"The original labels were signed by Heron himself and carried the phrase, 'None genuine but mine.' - from the history of Southern ComfortJust getting on the road Saturday afternoon was no bargain. I was way overdue for a honey-do day. small projects were piling up whilst I alternated pretending to be a musician and a poker player. So, before making the one hour (fingers-crossed) journey to the picturesque countryside of Commerce, California, I had the relatively simple task of clearing the kids clogged bathroom sink. Easy, right? After 6 hours, a trip to Home Depot, much muttering, a call to the father-in-law, another trip to Home Depot (this time with the father-in-law) and more muttering, the job was finally done, father-in-law thanked for bailing me out at the river yet again, and I was in the car, heading south.
I told myself on the way that I’d stay away from the $100 NL and only play $3/$6 limit. I also knew I was full of shit.
I found the tournament room upstairs at Commerce in a banquet hall. It had a very similar look and feel to the tournament i played in back in October. I find Hank immediately and talk to him briefly between hands. His next hand is dealt and he goes back to his table. Meanwhile, I see an Eagles 5 jersey and long hair walk by. And so begins my alcanthang experience.
As a shareholder, I was particularly interested in getting the near-real time trip report from the man himself. Soon Glenn joined us and we talked about Al’s key hands in the tournament. The tourney went on break and I met Grubby. It was all of 20 minutes from the time I met Al to the time when he and I were heading down to the Commerce Casino sports bar for a little double you-know-what and water.
Jimmy, our waiter, already knows Al and asks us if we want “the usual”, which we do. We talked about eBay auctions, being tech nerds, Chelsea football (about which I know nothing), Eagle football and, of course, poker. After the second round, we decided to hit the main casino floor, find some of the other bloggers and maybe even sneak in a hand or two at the $100 NL, errr, $3/$6 limit game. Jimmy brings the check and points out to Al that former football player and actor Bob Golic is standing over at the other side of the bar, getting ready to do some sort of live radio broadcast. of course, Al walks right up and starts talking with Golic and his lovely wife about the Eagles and Terrell Owens and the Super Bowl.
Now, I’m no doctor, but I’m pretty sure Mr. Golic is suffering from some sort of terrible hand-embiggening disease. Shaking his hand made me feel 7 years old. And I’m not exactly tiny. Anyway, Al insisted on a picture, Mr. Golic obliged and I snapped it. I will let Al post the photo. We bid the Golic family farewell and headed for the tables.
Already sitting at various no-limit tables were MrsCanHang, Bill Rini, and Glyphic. Al puts both of our initials down for $100 NL. I fought and fought but could not manage to get my initials off the board. so much for $3/$6.
I get called and go sit in the 9s at a blogger-less table. Third hand in I see KK after a couple of limpers and raise to $15. The 10s calls and everyone else folds. Flop is JT3 with two hearts, I lead out for $20 and he calls. Turn is a 2 and I bet another $20. Call. Damn, 3rd hand and I’m almost all in. River is another blank, but I’m chicken shit and check. He bets $20. thats not enough to convince me I’m beat. I don’t think too long and call. He turns over AQ of hearts for the busted flush and gutshot draws and I almost double up. That was really the only notable hand of my 90 minutes at the table. At 7, Glyphic grabs me for dinner in the bar. I cashed out, up $90.
Dinner was the highlight of the evening. The lineup included FeliciaLee and Glenn, Hank, Glyphic, Flipchipro and the las vegas vegas guys, the Canthangs, Jeff and Grubby. Shortly after sitting and ordering, Joe (Kent?) from Obituarium walked up and introduced himself. I had a great time talking with Flipchipro and Kent. After dinner Al, Kent, Flipchipro and I all ordered a round of socos. We soon got word that our order had cleaned out the bar. At least one of Al’s goals for the weekend had been realized.
After dinner we went back up to the tourney to watch Hank and catch some of the pros in action. We watched Amir Vahedi and Miami John Cernuto on one table. David Pham had a lot of chips on another table. Hank was shortstacked and in survival mode. After a while, we drifted out to the lobby and soon Hank joined us. Many of us found a spot in the lobby to sit and talk. The 3 SoCos and 1 Guinness I’d had were wearing off and decided to head for home before I got my second wind, started drinking more and sat back down to give back my meager winnings from before dinner. I made one last trip to the NL tables to find lkim, who had arrived after playing in a tournament at hollywood park earlier in the day. He was already sitting, winning, having fun. I said goodbye to Al and Glenn and headed for the door.
It was an amazing time and it makes me even more sad that I didn’t make the trek to Vegas in December for the big gathering. The people I met were great. Big thanks to Glyphic for herding us all together.
i know I’m not a big time poker blogger. I’m just a tech geek that is hooked on the game and studies it religiously. I write about poker occasionally because it consumes me and I happen to have this outlet. I certainly never expected anyone to find me and link to this nonsense. I have to say that it was nice that a simple love for the game was sufficient to be accepted and included by all these folks this weekend. Thanks to everyone I met for making me feel welcome.