I'm going in a big circle. Actually it feels like a small circle as it seems I just zoomed past this spot. I was in a Culver City studio five years ago today. I had thoughts it would be a milestone in my life to get me out of the circle I was in. No such luck. Here I go again: spinning, spinning, spinning. Don't get me wrong, there is plenty inside my little circle I enjoy greatly and would not give up for the World. There needs to be a break in the circumference soon though.
I am playing much less poker these days. O.K., I am still playing seven days a week but I am playing less per day. O.K., I am still playing about the same number of hours, I am just playing fewer tables. Fewer tables=less poker. See. I am playing live three times a week now. One for fun and two for blood. There is a player who can not play poker, is incapable of folding in the face of certain defeat, in incapable of not drinking heavily while playing, and is incapable of being happy with a small win or loss. Invariably, it is a big loss. By invariably, I mean EVERY TIME HE PLAYS. It amazes me. In forty sessions or so this year, he has been in the black twice. On Wednesday, he started with the "Here I go again," when he ran into a string of losses on hands he shouldn't have been playing. Actually, he had been playing quite tight for a while and was up. I just looked at him and said, "Simmer down. You haven't screwed up too much yet." I know it is not my place to tap the glass. Honestly, I just can't stand listening to him bitch about losing. I took note one night of all his complaints and it resulted in an astounding array of excuses for being a poker loser. Eventually, he devolves into the old, "Nobody runs as bad as me" argument. Bullshit. Nobody has the opportunity to run as bad as he does as nobody plays as many hands. For my part, I take very little of his money. In a session, I am looking to win 6 or 7 hands. With the way I play and the stakes at risk, that is enough to make it a good night for me. By my nature of play, his chips and mine rarely make it into the pot together. His absence at the table would impinge on my profit but not as much as it might seem. When it comes down to it, almost everyone there is paying me to play. I grin and laugh at their jokes, throw in the occasional blind bet, and answer their legal questions so they don't seem to mind too much. He ended up on the night to the tune of a few hundred and there was no pleasure in his face, voice, or demeanor. The saying can be true it appears; He's not happy unless he's losing. When he loses big, he is animated. When he loses small, he complains about how far he was ahead. When he wins, he is sullen. That is brain chemistry I do not grok.
Now, this is a young guy (for this group) with small children. It sounds as though he makes a good living otherwise but he can't go down this path much further without quitting or deciding to steer into the oncoming headlights one night on the way home. He's shown himself incapable of quitting. So, I try to calm him down. Am I a enabler or a noble soul? I can't help but think about his children and their screwed-up Daddy. Then I think of my children and wonder about their Daddy as well.
As I found myself yelling at the television last night over something a 19 year old kid did or didn't do, I realized I was being ridiculous. I shouldn't be allowed to watch college football. I've decided to go exclusively with the EPL and have started a blog for my team over there (Know how I know you're gay?). It's soccer for goodness sakes. How upset could I get.
That being said. GO PIRATES! Every year needs a non-BCS party buster and this could be ECUs year (only if they can surprise a very good WVU team tomorrow and keep the dream alive).