Monday, March 20, 2006

First Day in AC, meeting up with the man Fern-Dog

200% up to $200!!!
by Whitney

originally posted February 10, 2006

Day 3 didn't really start or end, since I did not go to freaking bed on Sat. night. As I was saying in the previous entry, Ian and I came back to campus around 3 am, with Ian aching for immense ass. After a couple of phone calls to make sure Ian wasn't missing out on supreme ass, we called it a night and cuddled in each other's arms.

As I mentioned previously, I had a train to catch around 6 am and had to make sure I made my informal appointment with
Pokerwire. Therefore, I wasn't taking any chances if I missed the first train. I would still have plenty of time to take the next one, anticipating my lack of real-world skills in purchasing a train ticket (do not laugh assholes).

Well I basically could not go to sleep and once 5 am rolled out and I just packed my bags and shipped the eff out of there. Sunday was the first day of the WPT Borgata Event and I was ready to go talk to my possible future co-workers with NO sleep. I might as well have been high.

I got into AC around 8 am and took the Jitney to the Borgata. As I took my first step into the casino, I serendipitiously got a phone call from
Fernando who wanted to meet up. I've met Fern before almost 3 years ago when I was 19 (damn) and it was good to meet him on a more personal level after getting to know him through our blog-communication. His friend Jay and him were up all night partying and just kept egging me on to put my name down and start playing cards. I was in no condition ready to play and had an appointment in a couple hours. We watched a short handed $500-$1,000 limit hold 'em game which is just sick.

Around 11 am, I went upstairs to the tournament section and was ready to scope out some pros. This is honestly an exciting moment for a fanboy. If you watch the NBA, you can attend the game in the nosebleed section but never get a chance to talk to the stars, introduce yourself, and make conversation. Poker is entering a transition phase of hitting big-time (well it may currently be considered big-time but we really don't know if this is the peak) as yesterday's big-time pros are now today's stars who are in the midst of the celebrity adjustment, or already adjusted (see
Phil Hellmuth). Therefore, most aren't really accustomed to acting as celebrities because they've been playing poker for so long without being recognized. Now with with the advent of television, they are "minor" celebrities as Barry Greenstein would say and really just normal people who don't mind all the attention (see Danny Negreanu).

So as I was awaiting near the escalators I wondered who was gonna show up? Who was gonna be the first big tv pro I'll ever see? Who am I going to get a picture with? Who along with Evelyn Ng will I bone ragged? Only time will tell. Sooner or later, I see Dwilli (David Williams) walk by , say 'hi' to some people, and talk to Stevie Dannenmann. I was kind of awe-struck because I've seen them on TV numerous times and they are the World Series Runner-Ups. But one was just really a college student and the other a CPA before their poker fame. All of a sudden I hear someone yell a joke in a hallway and it was Daniel Negreanu. I saw Barry Greenstein stroll through toward the tournament room with his book in hand, looking extremely miserable. As I entered the tournament room, I turn around and see Scotty Nguyen yell some jibberish with "baby" and a short Danny DeVito looking character, who was Freddy Deeb himself.

As I saw the tournament participants file in I see this lanky black guy in the corner of my eye. Phil Ivey walks in nonchalantly with that intense stare that I guess never leaves the poker table. Some of the interesting tables I watched were Juan Carlos Mortenson the 2001 WSOP Champ and Ted Forrest. Ted Forrest was falling asleep in between hands and may have the shittest looking clothes for someone who plays 4k-8k poker. He probably never buys new clothes or changes into them. Another table had Eric Seidel, Paul "The Truth" Darden, and Nick Schulman, a 21 year old WPT champion. I found it particularly exciting to see these pros in person, but watching live poker without seeing their hole cards was extremely boring.

I briefly met with Pokerwire who were busy since the tournament started. Apparently the tournament started at 11 pm and not noon. As a result, I caught them at a bad time. I believe they've already given me the axe, as they stated they can't pay for my relocation. Perhaps I came off as an extreme toolbag and now they don't want to hurt my feelings making up the relocating issue as an excuse. I really think I'm eternally fucked in life. The owner is getting married to Andy Bloch and her uncle is Howard Lederer, which means she is also family to Annie Duke. Those are some pretty goddamn good connections.

Barry and Phil Ivey were playing on opposing tables. After an hour of play Phil Ivey was missing and I thought he already busted out and wanted go to shoot craps, which apparently he did the night before, winning +1.3 million. It ended up he doubled up early, and then went to go take a nap. I saw him come back later in the day to play. Also, as I watched Barry play poker , he might have induced the most pity I have ever given to a person. He would look at this hole cards, yawn, contort his face in some painful grimace and then put them in the muck. The guy seriously just looked miserable. Goddamn, BG get some sleep.

In afternoon play, I saw Danny get up from his table and leave. Then a hound of fans surrounded him to get his autograph and picture. So I joined in and he was really cool about it.

Me: I guess I'm gonna have to read how you busted out in your blog.
: Yeah I just busted out (in that kind of humorous sarcastic tone that I'm signing autographs and taking pictures after i busted out, and it's not wrong at all to ask me since I'm supposed to be pissed off).

Danny seems just like an overall good, happy guy that is not full of himself. He is a great ambassador to poker and seems to always treat fans well.

Once dinner break rolled around, I felt like I had to brighten up Barry's day because he still looked miserable. So I stopped him while he was leaving the poker room.

As you can see he didn't really cheer up much. I gave him the "I hope you win" bs he probably always gets. He puts out his hand saying, "Take Care" as he was looking toward the door without eye contact. It was honestly the best, "I don't give a damn, but I will perfunctorily offer a handshake to not appear a dick," Barry look. I think Barry is my favorite player. You're my boy Barry!

As I left the poker room about to take the escalators down to the casino, I ran into another character. My boy Scotty Nguyen!! Dats No limit baby!!

Scotty is also another great guy who will always take time to say 'hi' to the fans. Plus he's always got his bling bling, a beer in one hand, and his 20 year old hottie in the other. He always seems to be in a good mood, cracking some joke, and ending it in "that's right baby." Frequently during the tournament, I would think he busted out because he was leaving the poker room, and with his arm around his hottie mistress. But then he just rolls back in, with his hottie mistress in hand of course. I honestly think wherever he goes he needs his hottie to come with him.

"Hey baby, I'm going to the bathroom, let's go baby."
Goddamn Scotty you are so pimp. That's right baby!!

Finally that night, I headed to the poker room and put myself on the 2/4 list because I did not want to challenge myself and was extremely sleep deprived. Interestingly, some WPT crew sat down at my table : a WPT cameraman and the WPT PR girl, who was hot. God, it sucked because I was at the other end of the table, and when a seat opened by her I didn't want to appear like OH I'll sit next to you and maybe get my jimmy rocked. I for one will say that, even though they work in poker, that does not make them good card players. But I really shouldn't expect anyone good to sit down at 2/4. As the early morning approached, I still had no place to stay as my head was pulsatingly begging for sleep.

Where the fuck was I going to sleep?

More blogs about poker.

Win Your Tuition - Click here to enter the College Poker ChallengeWin Your Tuition - Click here to enter the College Poker Challenge


F.J. Delgado said...

awesome story, Hansel!

Thanks for posting and providing a cool take on poker these days, it is greatly appreciated.


wallycrawler said...

Love da post . Danny is one of my favorites also but not for his poker playing but for his wife . She is SMOKE'N!

FilipinoNinja said...

Sweet post. I have seriously contemplated growing a mullet

FilipinoNinja said...

in honor of Scotty Nguyen...Scotty would make a fierce ninja.

WK said...

haha thanks guys
scotty is a real cool guy..check out his cardplayer matter what the circumstances he'll always give you the time of day.