Full Tilt - Poker & Casino - COM Cheats, Hack, Mod
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Skywind Games - Online Poker - Full Tilt
Skywind Games - Full Tilt Poker
Onlinepoker auf Full Tilt
Skywind Games - Online Poker - Full Tilt
11-10 02:13 - 'i have no trust in any online casino besides maybe pokerstars or full tilt poker, possibly party poker for casino. / Im done with online gambling. If i ever gamble again i will go to a real casino where if i get lu...' by /u/unpopularopinionwhat removed from /r/Bitcoin within 41-51min
''' i have no trust in any online casino besides maybe pokerstars or full tilt poker, possibly party poker for casino. Im done with online gambling. If i ever gamble again i will go to a real casino where if i get lucky enough to win i will actually get paid. And now i will go back to saving bitcoin, XLM, XRP and putting them on my ledger. ''' Context Link Go1dfish undelete link unreddit undelete link Author: unpopularopinionwhat
There is nothing wrong with lucrative companies to conquer new frontiers and online poker rooms have frequently expanded to the casino business. The latest to make such a move is Full Tilt Poker a subsidiary of PokerStars who proudly announced that it will provide its members with the opportunity to play blackjack and roulette. Instead of creating a brand-new client to incorporate these new games, they will use the same application that already runs on millions of computers worldwide. Back in January, when the new client was released, it was obvious that it was a major improvement to the previous version. Very few would expect Full Tilt Poker to undertake such a big change in a relatively short period of time, but that's exactly what they did. For the time being, only clients from the United Kingdom will be able to play blackjack and roulette here, but it is only fair to assume that players from abroad will soon enjoy the same benefits. Not so long ago, Full Tilt Poker was virtually broke with all its assets seized by the Department of Justice and players were anxiously waiting for their funds to be returned. The process completed in late March 2014 and at the time of writing, players from all over the world, with a few exceptions can play poker here safely. PokerStars was wise to make this acquisition, because after acquiring Full Tilt Poker, the number of clients grew a lot and they are now the biggest poker room in the world. By adding online casino games to the poker client, the Rational Group hopes to attract even more customers. In order to maximize their chances and in an attempt of speeding up the process, they decided to team up with Leander Games a company who has a reputation for developing excellent online casino games. The partnership was announced by the CEO of Leander Games, Steven Matsell earlier this month and both companies are confident that this joint venture will be a huge success. The game should be available on both play money version and real currency, just as the games of poker that have so many fans at Full Tilt Poker. There is no reason to believe that the poker room will change its profile and turn into a fully-fledged online casino, but this addition can't hurt. from via Casinoreviews
I'll cut off my dick for the ability to use a regulated site. (Shit post FYI)
*Its been a few months.. and it's about that time that I make a shit post where I bitch about everything* To all my fellow US players getting fucked in the ass per usual... WHAT THE FUCK DO I HAVE TO DO TO USE A HONEST POKER SITE!? It's 2021 and it has been almost a decade since I have been able to use a worthy-poker-site such as Full Tilt, Stars, 888, Party Poker, and so on. I am starting to fall out of love with poker because I can't keep playing on these bullshit sites located in Panama and throughout the Caribbean. Here are a couple of my experiences from the past 8-ish months or so. ACWPN/BCP: - 2 to 4 months ago I received 2 PARTIAL refunds due to bots being at my table, in which one scenario was a final table. Didn't even get a full fucking refund. This also doesn't mention the other partial refunds I received earlier in 2020. - As you all well know, ACR has had multiple scandals going back to 2012, like the the 2018-2019 PLO/NL cash game bots and several people colluding together to take advantage of the late reg glitch. Nagy can eat a fat dick. - If you play at America's Cardroom in 2021 you're a fucking retard. (No offence) Betonline/BOL: - 6 months ago Betonline removed $1000 from my poker balance on my account and said that the money was transferred to my sportsbook balance at 4am PST and all of it was spent in the online casino. When I asked them to investigate they did nothing. So I asked their Fraud/IT Department to send me a list of all devices, MAC addresses, and IP addresses that signed into my account that day... They refused to cooperate... Customer service said it was against company policy to release that type of information, even though its MY OWN fucking account and personal information. ( I took a break from the site but eventually returned because US players have no options and I love MTTs.) - 2 months ago I deposited $50 of ETH to their sports book to bet on an NFL game. Blockchain.com confirmed that BOL's Etheruem address received my money, and I even sent customer service proof of the transaction THREE TIMES. They still refuse to issue me my $50 deposit to this day, stating "our system says the deposit is still pending". - 2 days ago I received a $5 refund from a Windfall Sit n Go because the 2 other two players at my table were bots :) :) :) I should just kill myself at this point. WHO THE FUCK HAS BOTS AT THE JACK POT SIT N GO. Bovada/Ignition: - Honestly, I haven't used them in like a year or two because they removed the chat box, make it a pain to utilize HUD software, and that fucking update they did to their software. That huge software update was so fucking horrible the sites damn near unplayable. I'm sure you guys remember the old canvas/layout that Bovada/Iggy use to utilize, it was way better. Anyways, I just don't know what to do anymore. I NEVER had any of these issues back in the Full Tilt days. I don't even want to play half the time because I'm sick of all the bullshit. I am also in Los Angeles, CA so the lockdown bullshit makes live poker a huge pain in the ass. Some casinos are open, some are closed, some are outside, some make you wear mask and sit in between plastic dividers, some allow you to order drinks but not food. It's all fucking stupid. I really want to use my VPN but I don't want to build up a bankroll on a legit site like PartyPoker and then have my funds frozen. Maybe I should just hang myself instead. (joking, just being a dramatic pussy) On a serious note, thank you for listening to me bitch and moan about my first world problems. I hope ya'll are happy, healthy and staying covid-free. Cheers to 2021, MAY THE POKER GODS BE IN YOUR FAVOR!
Why are Americans forced to use shitty off-shore sites like ACR, BOL and Bovada?
Title says it all. Its 2020 and outside of a few states, 90% of American players are forced to use totally shady, unregulated, rigged-ass poker sites that are run by pieces of shit. Is there billionaire casino owners that lobby each year to keep online poker illegal? The US legalized sports betting, how the fuck is online poker not within the scope of those federal laws? This country just decriminalized fucking coke, heroin, and meth in the state of Oregon, but I can't sit in my living room and play poker at PartyPoker or Pokerstars?? I see online gaming companies, such as DraftKings, operating fine domestically, in both public operations and US-facing advertisement. I don't understand why its illegal for Americans to play on trust worthy, reliable, US-facing sites. As you can tell, I am tilted as fuck. I just got another PARTIAL refund from ACR because I was playing against two fucking bots at the same table. They wouldn't even GIVE ME A FULL FUCKING REFUND. Fuck the free world. Fuck everyone. I want the Full Tilt days back... (before black Friday obviously) Update: Please keep the up/down vote number at 69 ;)
Previous: The Humanity of Kanagi (Vampire) Fear is a concept that we're all accustomed to. As humans, we move toward things that move us toward feelings of pleasure and away from those that inflict pain or misery. Some things are ingrained into us, for example, snakes and spiders tend to arouse an automatic response related to anxiety, while it's common for us to avoid extremely high places or paths full of sharp objects. As was the case of Little Albert, the baby used in the (questionably moral) experiment that demonstrated conditioning an individual to fear something (in this case, fuzzy objects, something that stuck with Albert as he got older), fears can be "taught", either through personal experiences or second-hand. Interestingly enough, the concept of fear and hesitance develops early in our lives, as demonstrated in such experiments as this that observes infants who, at the start of learning to crawl, will not slow their pace when traveling over glass platforms, but begin to slow as they become more experienced with moving around, something that can be explained as a result of "trial and error", as infants fall and tumble. Easy enough, right? Us avoiding things that certainly will harm us can be justified without much thought required...but what about individuals who chase risk, these so called "daredevils" that would appear almost suicidal from most of our perspectives? Yukika happens to be one of my favorite characters in Magia Record, both in design and also her character background. As is the case with most characters in this series, Yukika has motivation behind her (reckless) behavior, which makes reading into her more interesting. With that all being said:
Yukika in Wonderland
I'll say it again, but Yukika's aesthetic is really fantastic to me, in that, as some of you might recognize already, it is based off of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland. What is amazing is the fact that this isn't a random choice in design, rather, it's based on the reckless/brave choices of the main character, Alice. From the start of the story, Alice spots the famous rabbit and immediately decides to chase it, even going as far as falling through a rabbit hole. This situation would coin the term "falling down the rabbit hole", which describes one moving (usually willfully) into a situation that is difficult, but very tempting. Another famous scene involves Alice finding a suspicious potion with the label "Drink me" attached to it, to which she responds:
“Well, I'll eat it. If it makes me grow larger, I can reach the key; and if it makes me grow smaller, I can creep under the door; so either way I'll get into the garden, and I don't care which happens!”
Most of us here would, hopefully, not be so open with drinking some random bottle that we found in a random spot, especially with the innocent but foreboding message to "drink it". Alice, however, chose to take a gamble and chug the thing as if it were lemonade. Coincidentally enough, Yukika's nature and effect of her wish bares semblance to that of Alice's adventures, where it is revealed in her respective event that Yukika tends to teleport or be drawn to difficult situations that can only be solved with her own wit (gambit). Looking at Yukika's appearance, she is modeled off a popular interpretation of casino-workers, which includes fancy suits and, err...bunny ears. Sometimes. This, of course, fits Yukika's theme as a gambler and her inspiration from Alice in Wonderland, but her artist is just really into bunny-girls and takes a lot of pride in Yukika, hence him being so active on his Twitter. Most of the content is SFW, but tread carefully, as he has drawn Yukika more perversely. Bunny's are a symbol of luck, being popular for their feet, in particular, but are also rather impulsive animals. In addition to this, they are also rather fearful little critters who show fear of heights, closed in spaces, my niece, and even cuddling, despite our desire to want to hug the furry little things. It's common for animals, especially of the small variety, to show fear, however, rabbits are most known to panic and can even die of literal heart attacks if placed under too much pressure. Hanging from Yukika's neck is her heart-shaped soulgem, which is chained to her choker. The heart is, of course, is pretty vital to us, so Yukika having it out and dangling by a chain is meant to demonstrate how her life is constantly hanging over danger...literally, considering that a magical girl's soulgem is what keeps them up and moving. To demonstrate this, Yukika wields a basic rapier, which, in of itself, isn't remarkable. But here's the thing: rapiers are not at all intended to be brought to real fights. They're just not suited for real combat when you consider the fact they're smaller than other blades/melee weapons and not at all good against an onslaught of opponents. In older times, rapiers would be used for duels, much like how cowboys would famously duel with handcannons, where the first person to land a hit would often be the winner, while the other loser gets a free ticket to the afterlife. Put into perspective, Yukika would be really outmatched in a straight sword-fight against, say, Momoko, as a major advantage she'd have, speed, is rather moot, as Momoko is strong enough as a magical girl to swing her giant sword around without much trouble. Yukika does, however, have precision, and if by some lucky chance she got a clear stab at Momoko's soulgem, that would be all she wrote. In other words, much like how Yukika's in-game abilities surrounding an emnity effect, are high-risk, high-reward, so is her combat ability. So just why is Yukika like this?
An Addiction to Thrill
As you probably know already, there are real-life people out there who are similar to Yukika. Some people jump from planes, bridges, mountains, others wrestle with apex predators, and then there are those who are foolish enough to throw money at gacha games for a...a small chance to...err... ...before I get a bit too real here, there are plenty of real live daredevils with different motives. Some like money and fame, but that doesn't explain why non-famous individuals are willing to risk their lives, even when they payoff is not at all equivocal to the risk/danger. Yukika has a very high-quality upbringing, where she receives a very good education and would easily be considered pampered. With such a lifestlye, one doesn't have to be too concerned with most stresses that afflict commonfolk, paying bills, providing resources for a family, otherwise climbing the ladder toward a better life, considering people like Yukika are already there. This sounds extremely comfortable on paper, and I'm pretty sure we won't see Touka complaining about inheriting a few of her dad's private jets when she gets older. To Yukika, however, a life without any risks is boring and unfulfilling, made even worse by the fact that she isn't even at the top of her own food chain. So where does a girl like Yukika get her thrills? Apparently through legally and morally questionable game centers that would make EA reevaluate their sales tactics. Although we are designed to avoid potential harm, some activities, especially gambling, feel so damn good. This is something I think a lot of us here can relate to. Think about all the times you've rolled the "free gacha" in Magia Record or any other mobile game and compare it to rolling the premium gacha. Odds are: you probably find doing so a lot less exciting (outside specific examples) as it lacks "grand" rewards, but also a large degree of "risk" since we're using a less limited resource. Rolling, in general, is meant to make us feel excited, and this goes from audio/visual cues that indicate a "grand prize" HIT to our favorite word: "limited". Same can be said for standard casinos, there are details everywhere that make us want to keep on rolling, and this is perfect for a girl like Yukika, as these sorts of thrills affect just about anyone, regardless of socioeconomic status/wealth. Granted, some of us can afford risk more than others, of course. This can all be explained by adrenaline, the fight/flight juice that kicks in our bodies when experiencing high levels of stress. This reaction was originally supposed to help us run from dinosaurs by allowing our bodies to achieve superhuman-like levels of strength and endurance, but because we're all clear of most those dangers, adrenaline pops for circumstances that revolve less around getting eaten. Needless to say, this "high" feels rather pleasant, and gambling, in general, already toys with the reward centers in our brain. There's a bit of a catch to this. As humans, we tend to be impressively resilient, and the more we're exposed to negative stimuli, the faster we build a tolerance to it. This applies to spicy/bitter foods, horror movies/scary things, violence/indecent imagery, and, of course gambling/danger. In terms of defense, this is awesome, but in terms of wanting to be stimulated and often, it's a bit of a killjoy. Also very dangerous for people like Yukika whose response would be to seek even greater danger. There's a quite a bit more to this, and I only covered gambling, as that's the most recognizable example for us gacha players. If you're interested but want an easy-to-digest source, Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji and Kakegurui toy around with compulsive behavior. Admittedly, though, I'd suggest the latter after the former, despite Kakegurui having one of my favorite, modern anime characters who is also voiced by my favorite Japanese voice actress. Otherwise, Poker Alice can tell us more about Yukika's behavior:
Poker Alice, The Doppel of Boredom
The Doppel of boredom. Its form is a daredevil. The master of this emotion feels a great and terrible boredom towards her peaceful life, spent sitting atop an easy chair. This Doppel imitates the form of an imaginary monster known as a “Dare-Devil,” and constantly covers its master’s eyes to prevent her from becoming aware of the danger in front of her. The Doppel currently boasts an undefeated record in battle, and is beginning to feel the same dangerous boredom as its master at the fact that no enemy powerful enough to overwhelm it has yet appeared. As a result, it’s been fighting more and more perilous battles by the day… but since her vision is obscured, its master still peacefully allows it to guard her back even as we speak.
As if Karin's doppel didn't have a surprising reference, Poker Alice is a direct reference to an old, western movie that followed the main character, Alice Moffat, played by the lovely Elizabeth Taylor. As you would expect from the trailer, Alice is a gambling gal who, like Yukika, desired to escape her life as comfort for one that was a bit more dangerous and exciting. The movie takes its name from "Poker" Alice Huckert, a real live Englishwoman who worked/managed a casino and brothel ring. Alice was always fond of poker, but this hobby became more serious after her husband died from a mining accident. Since then, Alice would splurge all of her winnings on luxuries such as clothing. Along with being a famed poker player, Alice was known for seducing men/opponents to get an edge in-game, as well as carrying a gun at all times and being constantly drunk. But it is said that she did not play on Sundays, so as we could see, Alice was a woman with high moral values. Eventually, at the age of 60, Alice's life of craziness would catch up to her, as she would be arrested for prostitution and bootlegging. Alice, the Doppel, is a strange being with hearts, clubs, diamonds, and spades tattoo'd on its body. We know these as parts of the suit we see on playing cards, with hearts symbolizing love (romantic and/or sexual), clubs as desire (for knowledge), diamonds as a passion for obtaining wealth, and spades as a forewarning for danger, most particularly death--otherwise known as the 4 components of human nature. Alice and Yukika sit atop a rocking chair, something that is normally comforting and practically free of danger, however, such a thing can become dangerous if one were to wildly swing on it. It's form is that of a monster which plays on the term "daredevil", or people who are aggressive risk-takers. Alice represents the idea that humans tend to gradually become more and more resistant to fear as they experience such stimuli. As such: it is layered in nature, which we can describe by observing Yukika, Alice, and the chair they sit on:
Yukika, alone, rocks on a chair. Such an action becomes mundane until Alice first manifests.
The first layer of Alice covers Yukika's eyes, who is not yet used to the newfound danger in front of her, as the weight of two beings would cause the chair to tilt further back/forward. This action becomes boring as the second layer of Alice manifests.
The second layer of Alice covers the eyes of the first Alice (with its mouth) just like the first covers the face of Yukika. The chair tilts even further, but this action eventually becomes bland.
The third layer of Alice manifests and does the same as the others. At this point, the chair is now becoming dangerous to sit on with everything rocking on it---but this is not enough to quench Alice's desire for excitement.
The final layer of Alice spawns as the others did, but this time, it rocks the chair to its full capacity. It opens its eyes and fully embraces the danger, as the other layers raise up their hands and yell in anticipation, just as one would while riding a rollercoaster. At this point, the rocking chair isn't a source of comfort, rather, danger and fear, as Yukika and Alice risk being thrown off.
Alice is a very mouthy Doppel, which reminded me of the Album Always Open Mouth by the band "Fear". However, this band is an extremely unlikely reference, given how underground the band is, so I'm about 99% sure that this is just pure coincidence. After every battle, Alice becomes stronger, but this is more a curse than it is a blessing, for Alice desires a constant stream of challenge and risks. In response, this Doppel seeks out more dangerous foes, unknown to Yukika, who has lost her sense of danger. For all intents and purposes, Alice is very compatible with Yukika, a girl who is at her best (namely during gameplay) when she faces imminent danger. As a final note, I know I stretched this to be part of my Halloween series, despite it not being very spooky, so, uhh...ooga booga! Next is the conclusion to my Halloween series, featuring Holy Momoko. After that, I will continue my normal schedule with the Kazumi girls and then move on to Mikage, a character I've actually been working on on/off for a month now.
UK side hustle live poker performance - year 1 results and thoughts
This is about 9 months out of date but I wrote this to help consider my results and then couldn't decide where to post it. Having recently got myself a Reddit account, this seems the place. ---- A little history: When I was 20 I considered dropping out of Uni and becoming a poker player. I had earned £18K profit across the previous year, and that is a lot of money for a student! Especially in the UK, where because poker is classed as a game of luck there is no tax on the winnings of gambling, it felt more like £25K. A significant “salary” for any 20 year old. Then I started looking at the data behind that and realised that I was averaging almost 70 hours a week grinding 6 tables simultaneously at small stakes to make that profit. In fact my income per hour was just £5.37. Not awful, but hardly worth dropping out of Uni. Suddenly that profit didn’t feel so great anymore. I tried moving up in stakes, from $20 buy-in’s to $50 buy-in’s, but in a month I lost £3K. The next level contained professionals, and the UK Government can pretend all it wants, but when you’re playing many thousands of hands, skill starts to overcome the short term coin-flips and variances. It was brutal. It was humbling. I wasn’t good enough, simply put, to do it full time and make decent money… so I decided to focus on graduating. When I was 30 I decided I would try a bit more seriously again, but in casinos. I’d played in casinos sporadically over those 10 years (actually ended up in one with the woman who is now my wife, after I “accidently” missed my last train home when I saw her in a London pub), and although I felt I was a profitable and solid player, you need to be mindful not to kid yourself. So I approached things systematically, recording data for 12 months to see what stood out and lessons I could learn. The results are in! · I am indeed profitable. The data told me I had made a total of £8,279 in profit. · I am fairly consistent, achieving a winning session 53 times from 77 visits, or 69%. · I played 337.75 hours, meaning an hourly profit of £24.51, or annualised a take-home salary of £48K after tax, which is £68K before. · I earned on average 14 “big blinds” an hour, a key metric for cash game players. At small stakes, anything over 5 is respectable, over 10 is great. I’ve heard it said 80% of small stake players are loss making, which seems a bit high to me, but I can easily imagine 60% are. Better still, my graph has very few swings. Interestingly though, I only had 2 amazing nights where I won >£1500, which probably means I played slightly too safe. I confess I did seek to minimise variance where possible, feeling that I was better than 80% of the players I was against, so I didn’t need to take 50-55% marginally favourable coinflips. Now because my sessions were of different lengths, it’s not immediately obvious if a £100 profit is good or bad. I mean if I’ve played 4 hours, it’s average, 2 hours, it’s fantastic, and 8 hours, pretty meh. So I took another look and blended the sessions instead across number of hands played, producing the below graph, showing a level of consistency I am genuinely proud of. Roughly speaking, I make £1 per hand played. OK Great, but what did I learn from this? Data is lovely and all (as is £8K!), but really you want insight from that data you can action to improve performance. Wait, I did better at larger stakes? Well firstly, there are a few things I found counter intuitive. Take the below, which shows the stakes I played at. In theory, you earn less the higher your stakes go as competition increases, but I didn’t see that at all. Playing at stakes 50% higher (£3 an “orbit” versus £2 an orbit – more significant than it might sound), my hourly was a whopping 600% higher. Put another way, I played just over twice as much £1/£2 as I did £1/£1, but made 13x as much profit! Surprising indeed, and massively unexpected. I am planning on playing some £1/£3 and £2/£5 once I grow my bankroll this year, it’ll be interesting to see if this trend continues, or if there’s something else going on not immediately obvious to me. Day of the week – weekends are worse?! Another unexpected development was found when looking at the days I was playing. I had expected that I’d be much better on Friday and Saturday when more amateurs would play and I’d be able to target them, but I found the opposite. Friday’s I made £2.47 an hour, Saturday’s £12.52, both way off my average, and across quite large sample sizes too (>55% of sessions between them). Meanwhile Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday all had ~10%+ of sessions, but saw hourly profit doubling my averages. My best hourly is Sunday, although I have never lost money on a Wednesday, so a close call as to which is my best. https://preview.redd.it/v10rt8fkgod51.png?width=600&format=png&auto=webp&s=8f3b3c4e57acd27dd00a70c1bc6fe05276270c38 After reflecting on these trends I started to realise something. Poker is essentially a game of knowledge and imperfect information. A key part of that is “position” (where you sit in each hand), where being later to act means you have access to more information, and “ranges” (what hands your opponents are likely to have), where depending on the position somebody plays a hand in and how they play it, you can start putting them on a range of cards. Nobody sane would bet with 7 players to act behind them with 2 7 off-suit, literally the worse starting hand, for example. More experienced players play more predictably, and I was much better at sparring with them because I have a good grasp of the fundamentals. I think my fairly conservative playing style is also more suited to regular players, as I tend to take fewer risks and so don’t punish mistakes as harshly. Finally, my risk adverse approach also fooled regular players into thinking I had weaker hands than I did, so I was able to mess with their attempts to put me on a range. Likewise I tended to just call, and rarely raise, any hand I wanted to play pre-flop, so I could disguise my hand and out-play after the flop. Again this isn’t traditional at all, but many of my bigger pots came about this way. Central casinos have easier competition Less surprising was my split in where I made the most money. Tellingly, Empire and Hippodrome are based in central London and are tourist destinations. I find the competitors objectively worse than I am, as a whole. The Vic and Aspers are less central, with the consensus being that Aspers was the toughest £1/£2 in London, consisting almost entirely of regulars and semi-pro’s. I mean, who wants to go to East London as a tourist? There’s way more glitz and glamour in Leicester Square and so much more appealing. The Vic is West London so less extreme, but a similar situation, it’s pretty out the way compared to central two. Length of session Lastly, something that was unknown to me was that I would see such an obvious split in hourly profit based on the amount of hours I was playing in that session: https://preview.redd.it/m9cs1n0xgod51.png?width=600&format=png&auto=webp&s=e23b60a18ef1f3cb6f77b32c92e12626f8450f3e Here, we see a jump in profit after 4 hours, and really between 4-8 hours is my sweet spot, running at 50% more than my average. I think after I have played at the same table for 4+ hours, that I am observant enough to spot certain patterns. One of my favourite tricks is to identify regulars targeting tourists, and re raise them. You know their range will be wide to target the less good player, so you take advantage of them trying to take advantage. This is especially good if you have a good position (so act after them), so that if they do call you can play the hand with more information. The drop-off at the end likely indicates that after 8 hours I start making bad decisions. Reviewing this, not only am I probably a bit tired, but I think those sessions I am on “winners tilt”, and I must be winning or else I wouldn’t be there after 8 hours. But when you’re up and doing well, you tend to play hands you shouldn’t and make bad decisions that cost you, it can feel like there’s less cost in getting it wrong because you’re still in profit, even though it can cost more in terms of £s. Once I became aware of this in myself, I started seeing it in others. There’s a regular at the Hippodrome who is a dangerous and good player, but becomes reckless and likes a gamble when they are up. If he has lots of chips, I always try and sit at his table, and look to get it in when I am a 60-80% favourite, and hope my luck holds. What’s next? I’ve taken 2 months away from the casino’s to make sure I don’t have a problem and focus on a work project, and I’m looking forward to starting this year on the 29th November. I suppose starting on a Friday isn’t ideal, but it aligns nicely with my wife’s office Xmas party, so oh well! That said, I will make sure I play the £1/£2 at the Hippodrome for 4-8 hours. As it will be a Friday I’ll look to punish mistakes more aggressively and make fewer assumptions about the other players and their cards if they seem less experienced. Let’s see if I can take the lessons learned across this year, and drive further improvements to make more money, improving on my operational performance, the real purpose of data in my opinion.
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Warning: this story will contain mentions of unhealthy relationships and adult themes. The main character also has some character traits that may differs from your own, please do keep that in mind. Review and comments will be appreciated (Customisation) There once was a dashing bachelor (That looked like )(uses the OH male feces) Face 1 Face 2 Face 3 Face 4 (Hairstyles) James Bond (black slick backed) Don Diego Vega (dark brown wavy hair slicked back long neck) Steve Rogers (Short blonde side swept hair) Agent J (Short kinky curls) Is this him? Yes No (go back to customisation) What is his name? (Default: George) (Surname) (Default: Bishop) There he meets A beautiful woman A handsome man A beautiful woman Face 1 (Asian; has pale skin, dark almond eyes, straight black mid-back hair with a mid-part) Face 2 (Hispanic: has tan skin, deep brown eye and over shoulder-length volumes wavy hair with side bangs.) Face 3 (Afro-American: dark skin, expressive brown eyes with long blackish brown chest-length kinky curly hair.) Face 4 (Caucassian: pinkish skin with freckles, clear blue round eyes, collarbone length layered dirty blonde hair) A handsome man Face 1 (Asian: pale skin, dark almond eyes, straight black hair put up in a pompadour style) Face 2 (Hispanic: tan skin, with slicked back wavy hair that always looks like it is coming undone.) Face 3 (Afro-American: dark skin, expressive brown eyes, with a crewcut with tight natural curls.) Face 4 (Caucasian: pinkish skin with freckles, clear blue eyes, dirty blonde hair in a Taper haircut.) As the two peoples eyes lock across the room. The sensation of a pull drives them to get closer to one another. As the dashing bachelor offered his hand his partner gladly accepted it. Leading into a dance that lasted the rest of the night. The whole world faded away to the sound of the Jazz band, their breathing and their dancing. As their lips moved to meet... ???: “Oh come now Joanna, you know that is no way that would ever happen.” (Record Scratch) Joanna: “Oh for craps sake, George I was getting to the best part.” George: “Forgive me for finding it uncomfortable that you have decide how my love life is going to go.” Lance: “He does have a point there sis.” Joanna: “Way to stand up for your sister Lance.” Lance “Look I’m all for love conquers and all that jazz but it is kind of difficult to make a love life for someone else.” George: “Thank you.” Lance: “I mean he isn’t a completely lost cause. I’m sure some desperate soul will take him.” Lance: “I mean he’s got dads looks, and he managed to get with mom when they were young.” Lance: “That might make up for his zero tact.” George: “Your faith in me is awe inspiring.” Lance: “Oh cheer up. With your upcoming trip to Vegas, maybe you’ll have luck in love and not just on the poker table.” Joanna: “Maybe you’ll meet someone special!” You snort, finding the idea silly. George: “I wouldn’t bet on it.” Chapter 1: One night in Vegas In an underground speakeasy decked out in old decor from the 20th centuries first half. You sit there nursing your drink. After a long day at the office you love nothing more than when you can enjoy your secret fancy. Dressed up in an old-fashioned pinstripe suit and a fedora. You feel like a king, this little piece of haven in Chicago that seemed to be frozen in time. You feel your friend beside you stir, he himself having to relax from work as well as dreading an upcoming event. After his fifth sight you opt to actually talk about it. You take a swing of your drink and decide to talk about the elephant in the room. Or more accurately you decide to talk about the issue in pre 1940’s slang George: “Your bear cat of a sister still giving you a hard time?” Jeremy: “Noneofya.” He mumbled. George: “Look Pally, I known you since we were scrubs and had squat. What's eating you?” Jeremy: “That dame will chisel me out of every dime I own.” George: “Stephie acting like a Big cheese cause she is getting hitched?” Jeremy: “She wants everything spiffy and I’m quite sure her ankle biters will be paying the bills. My folks are on my case regarding my dame.” You think for a moment. Jeremy and Katie had been together for four years. They got one another, they lived together. George: “Stephie’s lucky her guy thinks she’s the Cat's meow.” You said reflecting on everything you ever heard regarding Darren, he was a good guy. Definitely not the smartest but he loved Stephanie like she was the only woman alive. You just wondered why anyone would want to spend time with that woman. Jeremy: “Alright, real talk.” Jeremy said as he dropped ‘the act’, we were no longer hot shots in the prohibition era. We were now just George Bishop and Jeremy Jackson a financial advisor and a computer wizard. George: “In all do honesty I do not see why you need to go there? Aren’t bachelorette parties strictly female?” Jeremy: “They used to be, but I am quite sure I am not going with them to be pampered like the bridesmaids.” George: “Then your function is?” Jeremy: “If I were to guess, fall guy and pack mule.” Jeremy: “I think she is also doing it to brag, that ‘she did it first.’ To rub it in Katie’s face.” George: “You never really care what your sister does. Why now?” Jeremy: “Because they are pressuring me and Katie. Not just my family but next to everyone we know. ‘When is the wedding? What is the venue? How many guests? Are you going to have it this year?’ Look I love my girl, but none of us is in rush to walk down the aisle.” Yeah, you know, you were the first one Jeremy told about his plan to propose. You were happy for him but at the end of the day it was up to Katie and Jeremy. Not you or their families. However the rest of the world seemed to think differently. Mom: “Oh sweetheart, happy valentine’s day! Are you spending it with someone special?” George: “Mom, you know I am not looking for someone.” Mom: “Oh, don’t worry, I’m sure you’ll find that certain someone sooner or later.” Yeah, it isn’t enough your sister is married and your brother is utterly twitterpated with his boyfriend. You need to ensure your oldest is also with someone. Boss: “Mr. Bishop, I must say. I am impressed with your work ethics, but we have decided to go with Mr. Robinson as the face of the company.” Never minding the fact that you worked twice as hard as said college. George: “I understand. May I ask what made you choose him?” Boss: “We did research and found that your college would be favourable, due to circumstance.” Translation: we wanted a man that was married and not the workaholic bachelor. Stranger 1: “You see that guy over there?” Stranger 2: “You mean the one with the RBF?” Stranger 1: “Yeah, probably one of those loners, will never find anyone.” Stranger 2: “I mean who goes to a restaurant like this alone?” Honestly? You can’t have a meal alone? George: “Yeah, I know that feeling.” Jeremy: “Seriously.” Both of you take a sigh. Jeremy: “But in all honesty. Thank you for coming along, I really appreciate it. Would probably loose my mind if I went alone.” George: “Of course.”
It would be a shame to lose my partner in crime.
My boss would be pissed if I didn’t.
Who would turn down free drinks?
Jeremy: “Yeah sounds about right.” *Choice 1* George: “Remember how we got back at Marcus Thatcher?” *Choice 1* Jeremy: “Oh, I remember. Too bad he didn’t check the file we sent, it might have saved him some embarrassment.” *Choice 1* George: “Big tough football star being fooled by ‘two scrawny’ freshmen.” *Choice 1* Jeremy: “And we were hailed as heroes for a month.” *Choice 1* Jeremy: “Wait, don’t tell me HR department has been on your case.” *Choice 2* Geroge: “Yep, too much overtime.” *Choice 2* Geroge: “Never mind I make sure that everything is quality controlled.” *Choice 2* Jeremy: “Geesh. Well glad to know I could be of service.” *Choice 2* Jeremy: “Ah there it is, I knew you had a hidden agenda. *Choice 3* George: “Jeremy, Jeremy, Jeremy, when have I ever hid something from you?” *Choice 3* Jeremy: “Alright fair, you are honest to the point of insult.” *Choice 3* Geroge: “You asked for my opinion, besides those shoes where ugly as sin.” *Choice 3* Both of you laugh, you had been in each other’s life since kindergarten. You where the odd ducks, most kids and adults always considered you to be cold or judging. Even if neither of you had that intention. Jeremy raises his glass. Jeremy: “To intellectual companions.” George: “To intellectual friends.” You said as you raised your own drink in a toast. The weekend finally arrived for the trip. You arrived at O’Hare airport with a good three hours to spare. You crack open the book you brought with you. It was a supernatural detective story you received as a gift on last birthday a few months back. While you applaud your sister for trying, it was still jarring to follow all the supernatural deus-ex-machinas that discarded real detective work. So that is how a 31 year old was reading a supernatural book in broad daylight. George: ‘ with gun drawn, Duskraven made her way down the basement, the surroundings smelled of blood and muck.’ Geroge: ‘Romano’s empire was now in full display in front of her. Fae, lined the walls, eyes hollow and only the movement of their chest indicating they were still alive.’ George: ‘Duskraven took out her polaroid camera, it was a risky but if this would ever have a chance to justice. Her leads and information would need to be solid if she wanted to take down the vampire cartel. She just hoped the light for the camera would be noticed.’ George: ‘With a blinding light the entire basement lit up temporarily blinding her, when she regained her sight again a new horror met her eyes. Multiple pairs of hungry red eyes.’ Jeremy: “George!” You tear your eyes away from the book in your hand. There is Jeremy and Katie, hand in hand. Seeing them together was always a happy occasion. Katie and Jeremy met at your favourite speakeasy a few years back. You didn’t blame your friend for becoming interested in the ICU nurse. Curly red hair and big blue eyes. Even if the courtship had started out rocky due to both of them being so shy. They overcame that hurdle and found something they wanted. Sometimes however you wished you didn’t feel like you were interrupting them. George: “Good morning, is Stephanie and her friends also here?” Katie: “No they had a sleep over at Daria’s house. So they will be carpooling.” You look at your clock and it was about two hours before the plane would take off, your bags where checked in and you were ready to leave and get to the section where the gates would be. But there was still no sign of Stephanie. As you though you heard a rumbling sound. Both you and Katie looked at Jeremy as a sheepish grim grew on his face. Katie: “Told you, a ham sandwich wouldn’t hold.” Jeremy: “It will hold till lunch, which is a few hours away.” George: “You sure that is a good idea?” Jeremy: “Tell you what, I’ll go if you come with me and Katie.” Katie: “So what do you say?” McDermott's · Sure, I could have a bite. (💎12) · Perhaps we shouldn’t Diamond Choice: George: “Alright, let us have something to eat.” Jeremy: “Good! Airplane food leaves much to be desired.” Katie: “You always think with your stomach.” Jeremy: “Yet you love me.” Katie: “Yes, odd isn’t it?” You make your way inside and stay in line. You look at the menu and order · Breakfast burrito · Bacon and scrambled eggs · Fruit and oatmeal You order your food along with a big coffee. You all slide into the booth, Katie had her yogurt in hand both of you looked worryingly at Jeremy’s breakfast. (Tilting tower of pancakes) (Holy crap!) You swore for a moment both you and Katie was reading each other’s mind. ‘He is going to puke.’ George: “Hey Jeremy, think you can get some napkins?” Jeremy: “Sure.” As he left you plied a few pancakes away, making sure that you saved the top one so he wouldn’t notice. Katie making sure the tower didn’t fall. She gave a thumbs up, thanking you. George: “So Katie, how have you been?” Katie: “There is always a lot of things to do at the ICU, sometime I wonder where humanity is headed.” George: “Really, that bad?” Katie: “How would you explain having a locomotive lodge up your rectum?” George: “How did that happened?” Katie: “They claim they fell on it, if I had a dollar every time this happened I wouldn’t have any student debts.” You shake your head, you have been thinking a bit about what Jeremy said at the Speakeasy. You had also noticed that something was up with Katie, she was on edge. George: “Katie…” 1.“Did you want to go on this trip?” 2.“Has Mr and Mrs Jackson been pressuring you?” 3.“Do you want to get married?” Katie: “In all honesty no, but Stephanie has made me a bridesmaid. I need to partake in these things. Even if I wish I didn’t.” *Choice 1\* George: “Why?” *Choice 1\* Katie: “I wish I could care as little about protocol as you do, but she is Jeremy’s sister, if I say no it might affect my relationship with Jeremy and his family.” *Choice 1\* Katie: “Yes, I mean no, I mean… it’s complicated.” *Choice 2\* George: “How come?” *Choice 2\* Katie: “I’m 30 years old George, time is ticking. They want grandchildren to spoil.” *Choice 2\* George: “And you have to be married to do that?” *Choice 2\* Katie: “Of course I love Jeremy.” *Choice 3\* George: “That wasn’t the question, do you want to get married?” *Choice 3\* Katie: “It is just so big, all those expectations. I… it scares the crap out of me.” *Choice 3\* George: “Listen, I will tell you something.” You said using your stern voice. George: “Jeremy loves you, he chose you. You chose him. That is the truth at the end of the day.” Katie looked at you, a shy smile graced her lips. She mouthed a thank you. Jeremy made his way back to you with a great pile of napkins. You all begin to take part of the meal. During the entire meal Katie and Jeremy’s shoulders touched and they looked as content as they could be. (‘Loving it’ you had breakfast at McDermott) None diamond choice: George: “Let us just sit down and relax, we should be in Las Vegas at 1 am. Knowing Stephanie we will probably eat something there before heading to the hotel.” Katie: “Maybe, I’ll get some water at least.” Jeremy: “Good idea.” (‘Not hungry’ you didn’t have a McDermott breakfast) As all of you wait for the supposed ‘bride’ you hear commotion. Sure enough you see a brunette with a close to permanent scowl on her face. Followed but two very flustered women. “There you are! WHERE have you been?!” Her tone is as pleasant as you remember, nails on a chalkboard. Jeremy: “We have been here waiting for you.” Stephanie: “You aren’t even going to help me with my bags. What type of brother are you?” Jeremy: “Well we are here, we have about half an hour before the plane leaves. So let’s get to the gate.” Stephanie just huffed. Storming away. George: “Wow she is in a good mood.” You state sarcastically. Jeremy: “Yeah she gets like that some time.” Jeremy: “Just try not to set her of, she can be a handful.” Katie: “I mean how bad could it possibly be?” You were never the very superstitious type, but you were quite sure that Katie just opened Pandora’s Box. From the time the plane touched ground in Nevada everything that could set of Stephanie did. Stephanie: “URRGH!!! where is that shuttle! He is LATE!!” Jeremy: “They told us like five minutes ago there is traffic jam.” Stephanie: “Then he should have planned it earlier!” Stephanie: “I will not wait an hour! WE have a schedule to follow!” George:’ This coming from the woman that almost missed the plane to her own bachelorette party.’ Daria: “They say it is only another 15 minutes.” Stephanie: “I DON’T CAREEEEE!” Stephanie: “What do you mean that our suits where not booked?” Receptionist: “You never sent in the deposit for your stay.” Stephanie: “THAT WAS GEMMA’S JOB!” Gemma: “I told you, the suits needed to be paid for by the same person that booked them.” Stephanie: “You are a bridesmaid, you are supposed to make things work!” George: ‘Honetly…’ George: “Sigh…” Stephanie: “THIS ISN’T WHAT I ORDERED!” Waitress: “Yes it is, you wanted a calamari.” The poor waitress looked exhausted and probably wanted to be anywhere but here, not that one could blame her. Stephanie: “NO IT ISN’T! I wanted the pasta with bacon and cheese.” Katie: “A cabonara?” Jeremy: “Stephie we are at a seafood restaurant.” George: ‘IS she ever satisfied?’ All of us where back at the hotel, Stephanie insisting that they ‘needed’ a new set of clothes for the casino and club they were planning on hitting. Jeremy looked ready to just give up. George: “You know, you could simply say no to her.” Jeremy threw an exhausted glair at me. Jeremy: “If it was so simple neither me, you nor Katie would be here right now.” George: “And you wouldn’t be here doing this Sisyphean task, which obviously brings you missery.” Jeremy: “Yeah well, I still want my parents in my life, if I didn’t do this, they would never let me live it down.” What to wear to the casino? · Tuxedo 007 (💎 15) · Basic black Diamond option: Jeremy: “You look like James Bond.” George: “I’ll have a martini, shaken not stirred.” You said and an amused smile spread across Jeremy’s face. None diamond choice “I Think I’ll stick with this.” “Fair enough, I am too exhausted to care anyway.” Jeremy said with a tired smile. You both left the room, making our way to one of the pulsing centres of the strip. There in the golden casinos you thought finally your luck would finally turn for the better. That the glamorous atmosphere would rub off on the soon-to-be bride. Causing her to stop doing her impression of a screeching barn owl and let ALL of them enjoy Sin City. Well it seemed to have worked, for now. Both you and Jeremy where at the black jack tables, enjoying yourself. While the ladies were back at the slots machines. Jeremy folded a while ago, it is just you and one more. You looked down at your cards a jack and an ace. You opponent opposite you had this confident smirk on his face. But you saw how the sweat was running down his face. He was bluffing. George: “Hum…”
Act as if you have a bad hand
Act arrogant and self-assured
Do not react at all and watch the man squirm
You decide to let your brows furrow in what would look like frustration. The man opposite you lets the edge of his mouth turn in a smirk. His confidence boosting with every minute. *Choice 1* You decide to put on the theatrics, giving a smile like the cat that ate the canary you look at your opponent. That is growing more and more agitated by the minute. *Choice 2* You keep your face natural, a lot of people often comment that you look angry whenever they see you. You could only assume it was true because your opponent was practically squirming in his seat. *Choice 3* When he reviles his hand, you pause for a moment before reviling yours. You won. George: “I’ll be taking these.” You said as you dragged them back chips and split them evenly between you and Jeremy. You had started with the same amount of tokens. Even if you did work with money daily, this was one of those occasions you allowed yourself to be a bit more relaxed regarding that subject. Jeremy: “Nice one.” George: “All in a day’s work.” Jeremy: “So what next?” Before you could answer you hear commotion from the opposite side of the casino. The screeching voice meant that Stephanie was somewhere in the middle of it. Both of you sigh, knowing that your happy hour was over. Sure enough there at the era leading into one of the shows where Stephanie and her entourage, all of them except Stephanie wearing baby pink dresses and Stephanie herself wearing a sash reading ‘all hail the bride’ along with a tacky tiara probably worth a five dollar bill at most. She was screaming at a bouncer, while all the others tried in vain to calm the soon-to-be bride. Stephanie: “You are an idiot! What service is this!?” When we had arrived there was already an audience forming. Yeah this was common whenever Stephanie was involved. ‘Drama Queen’ had been your nickname for her during high school for a reason. Jeremy: “What happened?” Bouncer: “Your friend here slapped one of your dancers, something about them stealing from them.” Stephanie: “I am the BRIDE! I am not supposed to have to pay for anything during my bachelorette party.” Jeremy: “Stephanie, what about we get some fresh air, okay?” Jeremy said as he tried to deescalate the situation. He gently grabbed her arm, but Stephanie was having none of it. It felt like it all happened in slow motion, Stephanie turned around and a closed fist and rage connected it with Jeremy’s face. Your friend flew back and hit his head on the floor pretty hard. Stephanie didn’t even care to check what state her brother was in. Katie flew to her fiancés side and the sight of your friend’s bleeding face was enough to make you see red. George: “Alright enough.”
Give her the evil eye
George: “Stephanie, you are way out of line.” *Choice 1* Stephanie: “No I am not!” *Choice 1* George: “You have taken no responsibility during this trip, you have been rude to every member of the party, you have caused a scene at every place we have been to. Do I need to keep going?” *Choice 1* Your voice is like ice, you swear the temperature just dropped a few degrees. As you pointed out everything she has done during the less than 24 hours you been together. *Choice 1* Stephanie looks angrily at her bridesmaids as is she is waiting for them to defend her. *Choice 1* They do not, they know you are just stating the truth. *Choice 1* George: “Your own brother did not want to be on this trip, he begged me to come along. Doesn’t that tell you just how vile you have been acting?” *Choice 1* Stephanie: “You listen here…”*Choice 1* George: “No you listen for once in your life!” *Choice 1* You rarely let your emotions out but Stephanie was a special case. *Choice 1* George: “If this is how you treat people, do not be surprised when Darren leaves you at the altar. He deserve better than this.” *Choice 1* With that as a closing line you left, Jeremy might need to get to the hospital. He was worth more than Stephanie would ever be in your eyes. *Choice 1* As you leave you are quite sure you hear someone applauding. *Choice 1* With determined steps you made your way to one of the waitresses. *Choice 2* George: “Excuse me.” *Choice 2* You hand her a 50 dollar bill as you grab a big jug glass filled with beer and briskly walk back to Stephanie that is still screaming profanities. Because of her back being turned to you she didn’t see you. You saw how people began to take out their cameras and phones. No one made a move to stop you. *Choice 2* With one quick movement you had poured it over her and a shriek of surprise entered your ears. *Choice 2* Stephanie: “What the fuck is wrong with you!?” *Choice 2* George: “Are you done with your little temper tantrum?” *Choice 2* Stephanie: “What!? How dare you!” *Choice 2* George: “You have been acting like a spoiled five year old since the moment we landed. I am surprised no one has done anything until now.” *Choice 2* Stephanie: “You are so not coming to my wedding!” *Choice 2* George: “It isn’t a loss, I was never here for you. Now excuse me I have more important things to deal with.” *Choice 2* You left Stephanie to deal with the people that had gathered for the ‘show’ and she began to scream at them and calling them all sorts of names. But no one was intimidated, they found it hilarious. *Choice 2* You grab hold of Stephanie, until she has no choice but to look at you. She is screeching, calling you every slur and bad name in the book. Your hands are firm on her upper arm, you just hold no squeezing, no pushing. You keep your eyes locked on her, you must have stood there quite a while until finally her defiant stare became weaker and weaker. *Choice 3* You kept hold of her until she burst out into tears. At that point you let her go. Knowing you had knocked her down a peg. *Choice 3* But Stephanie wasn’t your main concern, Jeremy was. You moved to stay with Katie and Jeremy, the crowd parted as the red sea as you walked by. All in stunned silence. *Choice 3* George: “Are you sure you’ll be alright?” Jeremy grimaced at the questing, blood still trickling down his face from where he had been punched. Luckily the nose would heal, the only question was what colour it would be in time for Stephanie’s wedding. Jeremy: “I’ll be fine, Katie is here too. She knows what she is doing.” Katie: “Having your fiancé being a nurse does have its perks huh?” Jeremy: “Yeah one of many.” The two of them smile at one another, before Jeremy turn back to you. Jeremy: “Think you can manage your own?” George: “I think I can stay out of trouble for one night.” Jeremy: “Maybe, see you tomorrow George.” Katie: “Have a nice night.” With that the two of them made their way up to the hotel rooms. You decided to check out the hotel bar. Despite being 10 o’clock it was surprisingly empty. Some people where there, some having already had a few to many. But what caught your eye was a stranger sitting at the end of the bar. There sitting in a knee-length ocean blue dress was a woman, leaning over resting her elbows at the counter. She had a faraway look in her face as she absentmindedly stirred her drink. *♀* There sitting a young man, nursing his drink. His blue vest and slacks combo suited him well with the crisp white shirt. His attention seeming being elsewhere. *♂* You sit down by the bar and is about to call on the bartender when I noticed a man, clearly intoxicated made a move on the man/woman at the end of the bar. Drunk Idiot: “Hello there, did it hurt when you fell from heaven?” The person in question just rolled hehis eyes. Clearly not in the mood to be the object of drunk admiration. Drunk Idiot: “How about you and me go up to my hotel room and get to know each other a bit more.” Haven seen the man/woman in question do every none-verbal que but slapping the idiot you decide enough was enough. He had disturbed you and the rest of the bar enough. With the smoothest and coolest tone of voice you could muster you cleared your throat to get the drunk man’s attention. It wasn’t appreciated to say the least. Drunk idiot: “What the hell do you want prick.” The smell of alcohol radiating off him, one would think he had bathed in vodka. It was surprising no one had tossed him out from being a nuisance earlier. George: “I do believe that you are bothering him/her. Please stop.” George: “Look we are old friends, its noneofya business so bug off.” George: “Oh really, then what is your friends name?” Drunk Idiot: ”What?” George: “What. Is. your. friend’s. name? If you are old friends you should surely know it.” Drunk Idiot: “It’s ummm… Terry.” ???: “That is not even close.” With both of you staring straight into him, mentally cornering him. Drunk idiot: ”Screw this.” The man declared in frustration and with that the idiot stormed off leaving both of you alone. After making sure the guy was out of sight you turned back to the stranger. He/She gave you a grateful smile. ???: “Thanks’ I really appreciate that?” George: “It was nothing.” You said making yourself ready to go back to your seat. ???: “Wait!” The stranger called after you, out of sheer politeness you turned back around. He/she Seemed a bit nervous, what now? ???: “Can I at least buy you a drink?” You thought for a moment. You were on your own, Jeremy was probably nursing the bruise with some painkillers and you did not want to risk running into Stephanie or any of the bridesmaids. It also felt wrong to not take the opportunity to experience Vegas however. So you accepted. ???: “Well What’s your poison?” He/she asked in a joyous tone.
With a quick wave they called the bartender over. ???: “So what brings you to Vegas?” George: “Bachelorette party.” ???: “Did it have anything to do with that brunette that slapped one of the dancers and had security physically lift her out?” George: “Bingo.” ???: “No one got seriously hurt?” George: “Thankfully no.” With that the bartender served the drink and the stranger slipped a 50 dollar bill. You lift the glass in a gesture for a thank you. And let the beverage slip down your throat. It was nice, it was a good year and the taste was strong but not overpowering. You noticed that his/her eyes were on you, almost as if they were trying to decipher your character. George: “What are you doing?” ???: “Trying to get a read on you, some say what you order is often an indication of who you are.” George: “Really? Then what can you say about me?” You asked, deciding to humour them. ???: “I can say that that you are a man that know what he wants and how you want them.” *Martini* ???: “You are an old soul, you probably know your liquor well. My guess you have a great library at home.” *Old fashioned* ???: “You are quite classy, and you can find a way to get drunk before noon.” *Red wine* With that you give an amused chuckle. George: “Well there is some truth to that statement.” You take a look at the drink they self are nursing. (Dark n Stormy) (Humm...) George: “If I were to do the same to you, I guess you have a sweet tooth and might have wanted to be a pirate at some point.” At that comment the stranger began to laugh. It was the infectious kind of laugh that made someone warm form the bottom of their stomach. ???: “Alright you got me there.” He/she then stuck out their hand. (My name is..) (Default name: Skyler) George: “‘Skyler’ it is a pleasure to meet you.” You said as you shook it. You take in Skyler’s look. You had to admit that they were an attractive specimen of a man/woman. George: “The name is George Bishop.” Skyler: “George Bishop, how professional sounding.” He/ she said as if they were tasting your name in their mouth. George: “Well I do hope so, would be difficult to be an advisor if people believed I was a joker.” Skyler: “Ah, so you are one of those people that look at you and stamp ‘rejected’ on every paper?” George: “I believe that I am fair in my judgement.” George: “How about yourself?” At that their eyes fell. Skyler: “Right now, I’m a 30 year old trying to figure out my next move.” George: “How come?” Skyler: “Lost my job due to relationship issues between my manager and her boyfriend. Apparently, me being friendly was mistaken for flirting.” Skyler: “What, they want a grumpy Greeter at the door?” George: “That is unprofessional.” Skyler: “Yeah, well relationships are messy.” George: “Agreed.” Skyler: “I must say the way you handled that woman, it was surprising.” Skyler said in a genuinely impressed voice. George: “You were watching?” Skyler: “Kind of hard not to, I’m surprised half the hotel didn’t hear her.” George: “Someone had to show her she isn’t the Queen of Sheba.” Skyler: “What are your thought on marriage?” You shoot up a bit, a bit startled by the blunt question. George: “My thoughts?” Skyler: “You seem like a guy that know what he thinks. I want to pick that brain a bit.” It had been a while since someone had so blatantly flirted with you. To be fair you were a bit surprised. Dating had often been a minefield for you. George: “Marrige…”
It’s an institution
It’s a partnership
George: “Historically it was a way to ensure land, money and heirlooms where added into a new household.” *Choice 1* George: “It was also a safety for children back in the day, since basterds often faced quite a few challenges from being born out of wedlock.” *Choice 1* George: “It is a symbol of trust, that you do have someone that you can count on.” *Choice 2* George: “But at the end of the day, if you are unfair to that partner hey might not stay.” *Choice 2* George: “To describe marriage is like trying to describe oceans and water. Even with similarities we can see, gathering it all in an explanation would probably not give a fair judgement.” *Choice 3* Skyler: “To me it’s a promise. ‘To have and to hold’ it is silly in this day and age were people divorce left and right for trivial things.” Skylers eyes became dark, falling into deep thoughts. You had never been the poetic kind, but there was a sweet sentiment in Skyler’s view on things. Your parents where still married over 30 years now. Your sister was due some time in December, your brother was off celebrating a two year dating anniversary and your paternal grandmother still loved her deceased husband dearly. To you it just never happened, perhaps it wasn’t for you. George: “That we can agree on, people are so afraid they will settle. At the first sign of trouble they leave.” Skyler: “So that woman form before… how long do you think her marriage will last?” George: “If she acts like she did tonight, I wonder if her husband will even stay for the ceremony.” You looked at your new companion and in an unusual turn of events you called the bartender over. George: “Can I buy you a drink?” With that Skyler smiled, deciding to keep you company. Sometime later you awake to the sound of your alarm clock. You feel a splitting headache, you drag you hand over your face as you do you feel a cold metal band around your finger. Pulling back as your eyes focus you see that it is a plain sliver coloured band. (is that?) · Oh no… Feeling more sober than ever before you realised just what a mess you got yourself into. George: ‘I just got married in Vegas.’ Well, you’re screwed.
Sometimes it’s not the money it’s the principal. And I truly wish I knew whether or not I can swear in this post because holy heck do I want to unload. I have been playing poker since I was 14, slots not far after, sometimes as hobby, and years at a time as profession. Black Friday for the US crippled me, I was at a point that I was so determined to play the wsop 10k ME that I had 4-5 of the top “Steps tickets” worth 2k each and 1 win away from MAin event entry. Along with that prob 5-10k that I would get approx 1/3rd of back nearly 2 years later. On poker rankings I was consistently top 99%, partly because I played all day everyday, and partly because I was decent. After gov seizures I went on a crazy tilt, downward spiral where I degened away close to 100k of funds. These were any funds I could get my hands on, not all I could really pay, and mostly lost online. I played pokeslots online basically 24/7 for months straight. At the end I hated myself, hated my life, and knew I was effed in the a. But the next 3-5 years of not playing anything I was atleast comforted knowing or feeling like it was myself responsible for my own success, having once turned my very first deposit of 200$ into 22,000$ on full tilt, and unbelievably still $1.86 to nearly $30,000 on poker stars in 3 weeks. However the comfort came from also knowing I was the reason for my own failure and poor poor decision making. Atleast I didn’t feel cheated. Here we are what feels like 10 years later, I did manage to scrap together 1,000$ 5 years ago for a live satty at the rio, and right as the main event started I won a seat. Busted day 2. Pretty much hasn’t played since. Recently my bracelet winning friend got me to follow him around all over the state and neighboring states to check out his slot grind. I quickly got back into it and in downtime turned to gambling online. I struggled so much on the last sites I had known that were still around, but my faith will never waiver from them again. And after the bs I encountered I will never stray again. In any case I stumbled on these shoddily thrown together sites (it seems) such as Planet7 and Coolcat casino to be specific out of a long list of Royalaces, casinoextremes, captain jacks. Now I can’t say for sure the gameplay is rigged, but I will say for the 1000 or 2 thousand of dollars I’ve put into them, I have been able to withdrawl exactly 0$ dollars. When I signed up on coolcat, it was from my phone, when I went to login on my computer, it appeared I had a really old previous account but I couldn’t figure out the password. I have the chat screenshotted when I went to support straight away and told them that I believe I had opened multiple accounts and asked what I need to do, if I could play, and if it could potentially come back to bite me later on. The agent assured me and even transferred me to another who also assured me, I didn’t need to do anything accept stick to the account I was on now, never log into the old one, and only deposit from the one I just contacted them. They happily took my deposits, 1 after another. Until I hit for just under 2k with no bonus restrictions to pull bs with or max cashout to cap my winnings. Over the next 30 days I submitted and re submitted each document they requested. 12 days in the withdrawal was cancelled, and I was informed “since you’re doing BTC withdrawal you actually need to complete this other completely different verification process” 15 more days of pick and chose what documents the new support person would say I was missing and repeat the phrase “please wait 5-7 days for a response” and 5-7 days went and never once did I get a response. I took to complain on several forums as it was very clear my identity matched my account and everything was in perfect working order. The day after my complaint was posted on the forums for the casino to respond.... I go to access the casinos... Suddenly I’m not allowed access to my accounts, my accounts are closed, my funds are taken, and they will tell me this and only this.... “We regret to inform you that your casino access has been revoked. The decision is unfortunately, irreversible. Any casino account can be closed solely at our discretion as part of our policies to ensure game fairness, the safekeeping of company assets, and our third party payment service providers. I nor any of my supervisors can give you any further information or explanation” service provider left the chat That’s it, that’s all, that’s forever it seems what it will be. They happily took my money, confirmed in support that I have the pictures and transcripts of. Heck they even gave me a $50 no deposit bonus when I asked because the chat agent assured me, “I can offer this $50 chip because you have never opened an account here with us” well turns out both Planet7 and coolcat are full of it, and the whole 5-7 days withdrawal is dishonest at best but more likely is a straight up lie. I plead for anyone considering playing there, DONT! In 17 years I have never once been treated in this fashion, what feels like straight up mugged in the streets. I’ve had a gun put to my temple for 30 dollars, and still that doesn’t give me the sinking hopeless feeling of anger and despair this does. Atleast the addict with the gun had to get off his a** and put in the effort to steal my money. Shit had he not brought the gun I’d almost have respect that he got it. This just feels like some prince of Nigeria finally managed to suck me in and scam me, or my windows service tech was actually a Indian scammer all along. Surprised picachu Yet this is the only thing I can do because what the heck else can I do? If I could hire a lawyer, I would spend the money. If I could file complaints I would take the time. If I could deposit again and no I would be able to cashout, I would try to take every dollar, penny, and pixel they are worth until the site disappears. Nothing would make me happier than to put my foot soooooo fing far up there pooper that I’d tickle their tonsils with the tip of my toe.... instead “We regret to inform you that we told you you’d be okay, we gladly accepted your deposits for several months, we happily updated your address when you moved and emailed us updated address verification documents, we cheered when you won, and then we robbed you of every dollar you made.” Oh did I mention “There’s not a single thing you can do about it” Don’t take the risk. If you need legit gambling sites as a us player I can give you several other solid companies that actually care and actually payout and actually want you as a customegamer. You may not get 40090990% percent deposit bonus * (see terms and conditions) 1$ max cashout But atleast you’ll get the full experience of playing.
I’ve been playing Poker Stars VR on my oculus. Guys, it’s the future of gambling especially in a post Covid 19 world. These Las Vegas Casinos are gonna need some help. I’ve been wanting to invest in online gambling for a while. Looked into DRFT KINGS but also looking at PDYPY (they own Poker Stars and Full tilt among others) Anything else you guys are looking at for this?
Not going to lie. I have been following the Atari VCS for quite some time now and had actually considered dipping into my pocket to pick one up once it lands on GameStop shelves... However, the Atari Cryptocurrency Casino has me extremely concerned for the well-being of the company as a whole. As a company that is trying to rebrand it's self as a serious console in the new console race, this seems like a stretch and gimmick for cash from a dying company in a time of desperation. On top of that we've all seen how Full-tilt and Poker Stars were caught up in scandle and fraud. I'm now not so sure about the VCS... Hope I'm proven wrong.
Online Poker Provides Wonderful Gambling Experience
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Day 5 and here’s my observations as a first timer (from overseas) to Vegas playing tourneys and 1/2, 1/3, 2/5.
Everything is further away than it looks. Much further. Got a resident bus pass, $2 per day, sorted. Even still, be prepared to do a LOT of walking!
The Deuce bus on the strip is painful and overcrowded most of the time. But best way to get from Venetian to Golden Nugget for example.
New Yorkers are the least friendly Americans at the tables. Mid west guys are salt of the earth.
There is too much berating and tilting at fish. Just be nice ffs.
The games are soft. But higher variance as people love to gamble and chase draws - pot odds be damned (more like, pot odds?) Bet big for value and there’s absolutely no reason to slow play. But be prepared for more variance than usual.
It’s ok to be extremely fat and wear see through / skimpy clothing and tight mini skirts. Showing a lot of flesh seems normal. No one bats an eye. I know this sounds bad but I’ve never seen so many fat people!
The strip reeks of weed. Even saw guys smoking weed in the Golden Nugget.
People are allowed to smoke in casinos. It’s so last month. At least the poker rooms are smoke free zones inside the casinos. Just be prepared for some drunk twat to light a ciggy up beside you at the bar. Seems America is lagging when it comes to smoking regulations. (This was point 7b)
The ‘$1 tip” drinks are great. Plenty of non-alcoholic options. Love the cocktail service - really adds to the vibe.
The poker rooms are all very different, some reg infested, some full of happy drunk tourists.
Players fully decked out in WSOP branded kit (hats, shirts, etc) are usually pretty bad. But think they are really good. They tilt easily too.
A few people asked for my story so I figured I'd share. Writing it out has been good therapy I think. I first played poker on a camping trip with some friends some 10 years ago when I was 16. We didn't play for money and we used one of those cheapo wallmart sets of chips. None of us had any idea what we were doing. Pretty much every hand was limped family pots and checking down to the river. A year later my dad's boss invited me to a homegame with his staff. This was the first time I played with someone who knew how to play. It was $10 to play, and my dad's boss won all 3 tournaments he ran that night. For me it was pretty embarassing, folding straights face up because I thought I had a high card. Thinking a straight beats a flush. That kind of thing. That night I learned that poker was more than just luck, and that good players could make money. So I became determined to learn how to play and how to win. I started hosting games at my school. I brought my wallmart chip set to school and classmates would play with me on my free periods and during recess. Never for money though. During this time I started reading some articles about poker strategy online. Or at least that was my intention. After reading some articles about bankroll management and leveling I read an article on continuation betting. I didn't need to read any more articles because it only took the cbet to make me a BEAST at the school games. Pratically every player in this game was weak-tight and would limp preflop and check/fold any board that they missed. I started to win most sessions just by cbetting 100% of boards. A couple wins under my belt, combined with my secret weapon (the cbet!), and I knew that I was destined to be a professional. I started to host real home-games for money (none of us were old enough to play at the casino). Every second Friday we'd play a game with a $5-$10 buy-in (None of us had jobs). It took a few weeks to realise we had to increase the blinds to force the game to end at a reasonable hour, and a few more weeks to figure out a structure that actually made sense. I tracked all the results of these tournaments over the year, and by the end it was clear that I was the best. I had the largest ROI, the most first places, the most cashes, the most final tables. Every metric that mattered. And it was all thanks to my trusty cbet. I wanted to go pro. I had no other career aspirations so I stopped paying attention in school and would just day dream about poker. I wanted to play all the time so I signed up to pokerstars under my mum's name because I was still only 17. Because I had no bankroll on stars I played in the freeroll tournaments every day. The field was usually 9,000 players large, and I played in the 6pm game after school ended but before I went to bed. First place payed $6, so I knew I only needed to win 1 to launch my online poker career. I quickly learned that 100% cbet was actually not so good against the stations and maniacs that play in freerolls. I had to change the way I played if I wanted to make it to the money. Eventually, after a few weeks of busting before the first break, I made it to the money and I cashed in at 200th place for 50 cents - which just so happened to be the minimum buy-in for the 1c/2c cash game on stars. I FINALLY HAD AN ONLINE BANKROLL! I immediately sat down at a 9-ring cash game and bought in with my prize winnings. It took less than 5 minutes to completely decimate my bankroll. Much to my dismay, the players sitting at the lowest stakes cash game available in the entire country played like poker GODS! What the hell? Every one of my bluffs was called down. Every time I called down a bluff they had it. It was mental, these players were so good. Unlike anyone I had ever played against before. At this point I knew I'd have to return to my poker studies if I wanted to have any chance at all. So I picked up my very first poker book, "Crushing the Micros", because I was gonna be playing micro stakes of course. One of the early chapters talked about the concept of set-mining and this BLEW. MY. MIND. Needless to say, I didn't feel it was necessary to read the rest of the book. So, a few weeks later when I cashed my next freeroll tournament and returned to the 1c/2c cash game I completely changed my game. I used a new strategy where I only played pocket pairs preflop against opponents with full stacks. If I missed the flop i'd check/fold, but if I hit my set i'd check raise all in if OOP, otherwise i'd triple barrel pot bet every street if I was IP. It only took a few minutes to win my first stack with a flopped set. So I cashed out of the table and bought in to two tables. If you've never multi-tabled before, let me tell you, it's the real deal. Twice the hands means twice the speed and that means twice the winnings. It made sense to me that I could scale this as big as possible. Back then, Pokerstars would let you play 24 tables at once - So as soon as my bankroll allowed it I started playing 24 tables at once using my se-mining strategy. The beautiful thing is, it worked! So, playing 24 tables, only set-mining, I grew my stars bankroll to $1,000. I WAS A POKER GOD and I knew it. I crushed the school games, i crushed the home-game tournaments, and now i was crushing micro-stakes online too. The day I turned 18 I knew it was time to crush all those fish at the casino. So for my 18th birthday I got my school poker friends (the ones who were 18 anyway) to take a trip to the casino with me. We each brought $100 with us. 1/2 was too intimidating so the floor offered to open a 1/1 table just for us. Because it was a new table and 1/1 rarely got up, it was just us at the table for most of the night. Luckily for me though, I knew I could crush these guys with my 100% cbet strategy, and throw in a bit of set-mining and my friends stood no chance. I ended up busting every last one of my friends that night yet I only finished $300 up, which didn't make much sense. If I busted them all then shouldn't I be $800 up? In any case, it didn't matter. I'd just proven to myself I could win at the high stakes casino games. Now I knew beyond a doubt that I could beat any game I played in. Soon I would go pro. The next year I started uni but because I had no career aspirations besides poker, I'd just stay home and play poker online each day. Sometimes i'd go to class but I'd just play poker on my laptop in class At some point I picked up holdem manager and imported my hand histories. Over 1 million hands I had a win-rate of 0.5 bb/100 - Yeha I know, I played a shit-load of poker. It was eye-opening though. I'd played one million hands for pennies, with a win-rate that was hardly even positive. Just imagine if I'd been crushing that whole time instead. If my win rate was 10 bb/100 i'd be up thousands. So once again, I was determined to get better. I bought books. Lots of books. Like, enough to fill an entire shelf of my bookshelf. And I started reading. The theory of poker was first. Every time your opponent makes a mistake, you win. Every time you make a mistake, your opponent wins. Yes, got it, basic stuff. What's next? Professional no limit holdem volume 1. Pot odds, implied odds, stack to pot ratio. This was life-changing stuff. Simple mathemetical concepts I'd never considered before that made so much sense in hindsight. This was it, I didn't need to read any more. Like the cbet and then the set-mine, these concepts were the missing piece I needed to take my game to the next level. Now I know you're thinking: "Yeah ok, this is great and all but can you get to the part where you lose 200k?". And yes. Yes I can. So I started skipping uni completely to go to the casino every day. Obviosuly I realised that the rake on 1/1 and 1/2 was fucked, so I started playing 1/3. Even though I was over 1k up online, the buyins for this stake were still HUGE to me and I played pretty scared money. And honestly, I never ended up beating 1/3. I was break-even AT BEST. (I rationalised my results by blaming the high rake. It was unbeatable, you see) But, I made some friends playing 1/3 at the casino. One guy, Billy, started to invite me to his home game. I LOVED Billy's home game because the rake was lower than the casino's and the buy-in was only $100, which was much more reasonable. Billy had this rule, where you could buy-in for the max stack on the table. This worked well with my set-mining check-raise all-in strategy so of course I would always buy-in for the max. One night i'm playing in this game that's been going for 2 days straight and one palyer's got a 2k stack on the table. He's one of the fishier players so I think to myself, why not? And I buy in for my entire roll. 2k. First hand i get JJ. Flop comes AJ7r. I check, fish bets pot. "Got ya" I think to myself, and I raise all-in. Snap call. Oh shit. He flips over AA. I just lost my entire roll that i'd spent the past year grinding for over 1 million+ hands. I'm tilted. Billy asks me if i'm rebuying. That was my entire roll I say. And then Billy utters the words that you've all been waiting for. "Credit?" And yeah, basically that's it. I've played in Billy's game ever since. And funnily enough, it turns out I'm not some poker god, i'm just a grade-a egomaniac poker fish. Billy has me for 100k on his books and i've tracked another 100k in losses i've been able to repay. So i'm down 200k over my poker lifetime. Also, I flunked out of uni. Got married and subsequently divorced due to financial arguments. If you want to know where the money's come from I can assure you it's not my parents or a trust fund or anything like that. I sell drugs to poker players at Billy's game.
Hey guys wondering how people are feeling in the midst of this rally. Curious to hear peoples high conviction buys / plays. Love to hear both mainstream picks and contrarian investments. Long / short ideas both welcome. One of my picks is TSG The Stars Group ... online poker / casino which owns sites like full tilt and pokerstars. Company has become a good way for people to pass time while stuck at home with not much to do.
I have a ton of stories from my days of dealing in the underground clubs in New York. I now live in Vegas and work here full time in the poker industry. I often get asked by the players here in Vegas to tell some stories of my club days. Maybe poker will find it interesting as well. This all started in 2006. Fox's Club - 1.1 A bit of some background about me -- I basically grew up in the poker world. My grandmother was a playedealer decades ago (her boyfriend ran a large club in Queens, NY) and she started teaching me 7 Stud, 5-Card Draw Hi, and NL Hold'Em starting when I was 6 years old. We would play with a cheap Hoyle chipset she had purchased from the local grocery store. Occasionally, I even beat her — I’ll never be sure to this day if she let me win, but I’ll always hold those memories close. Poker was something we always did together and did often. It would be unusual to see my Grandma without a deck of cards on her. As I got older, my whole family would play together. When I reached middle and high school, I would host multi-table $20-$50 buy-in tournaments at my house and there would be about 40-50 of us at my house playing poker, socializing, eating, and doing what kids do. We were all terrible and had no idea what we were doing, but we were all having fun and little did I know it, but I was getting a taste of what was to come in terms of my career later on in life. When I hit 16 years old, a friend of mine from high school — Joey — who had gone off to college in Queens at St. John’s had come back home for the summer. He had been introduced to a very large and popular underground club in College Point, NY. At the time, he was making a regular income from playing small stakes MTT’s on Full Tilt instead of having a regular job during college, and naturally found his way into live poker. This was my first introduction to the underground poker world. In addition to playing online with him, I accompanied him and a couple of his college buddies one night to play $1/$3 NL at a live underground club. I was able to play because I had made some substantial money from running and eventually selling my own web hosting business while in high school. My other passion that I had started learning from a very young age was computer programming. I was coding in Visual Basic by 11 years old because a friend of my father’s, who was a software developer, had decided that I had shown some aptitude for the field and took an interest in mentoring me. I was lucky to have been given the opportunity of his time, teachings, books, etc. Anyway, off we went to Fox’s Club — Fox was the connected mob guy who owned the club. The game was protected and everyone knew it. It was a very social place. If you’ve ever been to an underground club, then you know that the quality of the customer service and experience can vary greatly from game to game. Fox’s game was the creme of the crop, it was absolutely top notch. It ran everyday, night and day. It was located in a large, multi-story industrial lot which sat right near a main intersection, which meant lots of traffic — a very good thing because the traffic to and from the game just blended in with the usual activity. When you pulled in, you could park anywhere you wanted out of the tens of dozens of spots. It didn’t matter where you parked anyway — I’ll get to why in a minute. Then, you would walk upstairs to the 2nd story to come stop in front of a giant steel door with a buzzer and several cameras positioned in front. When you rang the bell, they’d ask you who you were, you’d tell them how and who invited you, and in a minute or two you’d be buzzed in through the first steel door. After entering, you’d come to a second steel door with another camera positioned in front, which only opened from the inside. When you finally entered the room, it was gorgeous — clean, large, comfortable, and was equipped with everything you wanted in a club. A full-sized kitchen, multiple clean bathrooms (one even had a shower), a lounge area, a high limit room, waitresses, a bunch of large flat screen TV’s, and a smoking room among other things. The first thing you’d notice was that they had 6 high-quality poker tables paired with executive chairs, not including the one in the high-limit room. This club was spacious. As you walked in, a valet would ask for your keys and he would go fetch your vehicle and park it in an organized fashion amongst the others. You’d then make your way over to the podium and tell the floor which game you wanted to play — they usually had at least several games going — $1/$3, $2/$5, and $5/$10 NL and higher when it ran, but the much higher games were much more private. Strapped with $1,000 in cash on me, I request a seat in the $1/$3 game and eventually make my way onto the table. The max buy-in was $500, which I opted for because most stacks at the table were deep. It didn’t really matter anyway — this was my first time playing in an underground poker club and I was nervous as hell. I didn’t know how to act, was totally naive to my safety, I was 16 years old and I was clearly “the kid” in the club. I remember winning one of my first pots, and a mid-30’s Asian guy sitting next to me taps me on the shoulder. “Aren’t you going to tip the dealer?” “What do you mean? Are we supposed to do that?” “Of course, they work on tips. When you win a pot, toss them a buck, if it’s a big pot then maybe a redbird or two.” “Oh, uh… I see… I’m sorry, I didn’t know…” and I toss the dealer a buck. Over the course of the summer and playing there a dozen or so times, I began to take notice how much these dealers were making. Back then, in this particular club, dealers were well taken care of and I managed figure out that they were pulling in at least $1,000 per shift depending on their duties and how long they spent in the box. Some guys had multiple roles, would often spend time on the phone with players, some would work the cage area, some would floor other times, etc. The questioned then dawned upon me — why am I risking my money playing this game, when I could learn how to deal it and be guaranteed to make money without any risk? That was when I started to become friendly with Big Mike — one of the regular dealers. I wanted to deal and I wanted a job there… How was I going to make this happen? How could I pass up learning how to make $1k a night at a job that looked like it could be a lot of fun? To be continued… Fox’s Club — 1.2 Thinking about it now, the thought of a 16 year old kid wanting to learn how to deal poker in an underground club and actually turning out to be good at it… is just plain hilarious. But, I was determined to learn this skill, and even though I was a little naive about it, I made a promise to myself that I was going to study poker and poker dealing. When you’re that young, the problem is that your brain is not yet fully developed and no matter how mature and intelligent someone of that age can be, the fact remains that they have yet to gain “wisdom” — the kind which can only be acquired through time. I say this because I grossly underestimated the amount of time on the felt it really takes to become a solid, “A”-Dealer. But again, I had drive and determination to learn how to deal. I became friendly with Big Mike, got his phone number, and would text him whenever I wanted to come down to the club. I let him know that I wanted to learn how to deal and asked him how he learned. He told me that he had went to dealer school. I didn’t know such a thing existed. He wasn’t too enthusiastic about me learning how to deal, he said I was too young and didn’t know the game well enough yet. I came to the conclusion that Big Mike wasn’t going to help me, and sure enough, he never did in that regard. I kept him as a poker contact and would eventually be invited to other games and clubs by him, something that could be really helpful later on. With Big Mike not wanting to teach me, my plan was to go to Fox’s to play, and when I wasn’t in a hand I was going to study what the dealer was doing — what he did with his hands, how he shuffled, what he said, what he was constantly doing with the chips in his rack? This was how I discovered rake, by the way. I didn’t even know what rake was. At Fox’s, everybody paid $5 per half when the dealers would make their push. I thought that that was how they were making their money. What I didn’t know was that they were also taking a rake. There wasn’t a gator or dropbox for the rake. It didn’t sit out openly in front of the players as it does in casino card rooms. The dealer would quickly take out chips from the pot and they would go right into the well. Every half, the dealer that was pushing in would replace the well with the one they were carrying. The first time I saw the rake being taken, I was puzzled by what was happening and didn’t know what was going on. No-one else at the table ever seemed to say anything or even acknowledge it so I figured it must be okay. When I saw Big Mike go into the smoking lounge for his break, I got up from the table and went inside to ask him about it. He then educated me about rake and what it was. I was dumbfounded. This place must be making a sh*tload of money. 10% of the pot up to $25? I started to do the math on all the tables running, the time being taken every half hour, an average pot size for an average rake amount, and came up with an impressive number. Damn, what a lucrative business to be in. During the time I spent watching the dealer, I picked up lots of little things here and there, but ultimately just watching was not enough. I needed some proper instruction. I also knew I needed to learn how to “deal” the cards the way Big Mike did with that flick of his fingers — not knowing at the time that it was called “pitching the cards”. All of this information. All of these techniques. There must be some resources and information on poker dealing on the internet, right? I mean, if Big Mike went to a school that teaches how to deal poker, then there must be some info on where to go. I’d later on make a discovery that would make a huge impact on my life. So, I decided that moving forward, I was going to focus on getting better at the game while I spent my time at Fox’s. Maybe Big Mike was right. Maybe I didn’t know the game well enough yet. Instead of trying to learn how to deal there, I’ll just play the game and try and win as much money as I can. This didn’t turn out so well, however, as I was not yet a competent player. I had no live experience — I was very easy to read, made the mistake of engaging in table talk and failing at every verbal jousting I took part in, and I hadn’t yet been a real student of the game. I was learning the hard way through trial and error, which of course cost me tons of money. I didn’t always lose, because I wasn’t an idiot and was intelligent enough to realize that there actually is a skill component to this game. The Asian guy (from Part 1) in his mid 30’s, the one who politely taught me about tipping dealers, turned out to be a pretty cool guy. His name was Andy. When we first officially met, he asked me about which college I was going to and what major I was studying. “So, you in college? What are you studying?” “Actually, I’m still in high school. I haven’t decided yet which school I want to go to. I still have a couple of years left.” “What? How old are you, buddy?” “I’m 16, I’ll be 17 after the summer.” “So you can’t even drive, yet? Is that why you always come by with a friend?” “Yeah, I’m still saving up for a car. I think I’m gonna buy a used Mazda 6.” He was curious about where I was getting all of this money I had to play with at the tables. I told him about my computer background and web hosting business. He was impressed and I had earned his respect. He told me that he had initially thought that I was just another one of the college kids that came by to play — money from their parents, or playing with the extra college loan money that was left over and sent out as a check to students who got loans. We developed a kind of student-teacher relationship. He smoked a ton of cigarettes, and every time he did, I would join him in the smoking lounge and he would tell me his thoughts on how I played certain hands, point out mistakes I made, give me positive reinforcement on things I was doing correctly, pull me off the table when I would start to tilt, and overall just looked out for me. Andy was a very good player as well, judging by the fact that he consistently won and could always give me a logical reason and argument to why I should do things a certain way. Other people who tried to teach me the game would say things like “You should have raised on the turn”, and when I asked “Why?”, I would always get the same response — “Because you lost the hand”. That made no sense at all to me. That’s not an answer, it doesn’t answer the question at all. That’s just another way of saying that if I was a psychic and could predict the future, the way I could have won the hand was by knowing what the outcome was and making the right play. Andy would say things like “You should have raised on the turn”, and when I asked, “Why?” He would say things like “Well, why did you decide to call instead of raise? Did you even consider raising at all? Did you consider folding? What did you think he was betting into you with? You had a set of 9’s on a board that had one broadway card and two flush draws”. That was when I realized that I wasn’t even thinking much about what the other guys had, I was just playing my own cards and when I didn’t make hands, I would try and bluff, sometimes successfully and sometimes not so much. I was starting to learn the game from a thinking player’s perspective. Andy had been playing poker for a long time already and was an underground grinder. After graduating from college with a degree in finance, he got a job at some firm but eventually left to pursue poker. Between his investments and playing poker full time, that was how he made his income. He played in tons of games and clubs all around New York and was what you would call an underground pro. At the time, if you were a competent player, it was quite easy to make money in those games. There were tons of fish and people who would literally donate money. In the beginning, I was one of them. So were Joey and his college buddies. Joey was a decent online MTT player — skilled enough to consistently cash in small tournaments — but he wasn’t very good at playing cash games. Especially live cash games. He was too easy to read. So was I — absolutely awful at hiding tells, let alone knowing what those tells were. I remember one particular session at Fox’s where I was running like God. I had turned $500 into nearly $4,000. I was getting super lucky, super quickly. I’ll never forget this session as it was the first time I walked out of Fox’s with a huge wad of cash in my pocket. And it started off with the first hand I played that night. I always waited to play until I was in the big blind, something Andy advised me to do, as you couldn’t come in for free behind the button, not that I even knew what that was at the time. Forgive my recollection of this hand, it’s rough at best, it was over a decade ago, but it was the first time I saw how brutal poker could be. There was a raise to $15, a re-raise to $50, a call, another call, and I look down in the big blind at T9ss. I was still superstitious at the time and always played my first hand, no matter what it was. So I called and the original raiser called as well. 5 players. The flop comes TT9 with two clubs, and I check. There’s a bet of $150, then the next guy jams, the next guy also jams, another all-in, and at this point I remember thinking to myself — holy sh*t — I quickly call, so does the guy in front of me. I then turn my hand over. What does it matter? Everybody is all in, give me the money baby! Everyone else follows suit, and tables their holdings wondering what the hell is going on here. We’ve got a 5-way all-in, something I’d never seen before — AK of clubs, pocket aces, pocket 9’s, and QJ, which I’m fairly sure was suited. I’d be lying if I told you what happened after this point. My body was overflowing with adrenaline. The dealer does his work and the next thing I know I have $2.5k in front of me and some really pissed off people sitting next to me. As the session continues, within the next few orbits I manage to pick up pocket aces and pocket kings, stack two players, and it was at this point that I had around $4,000 in front of me. Like I said, running like God. Then, it happened. Thinking I was invincible, I re-raise a guy with 64o. The flop comes A44. The guy bets and I just go all-in, not knowing what else I could do. He then tanks for a minute, and says to me, “You’re really that lucky huh? You got that 4 don’t you?” I remember just smiling like a teenager who had just lost his virginity. “I don’t know what to tell you man, but yeah, I do. I have 64”, as I shook my head “yes”. “I believe you.” And the guy open mucks AK. I show him the 64. I get shipped the pot, and then Andy says to come join him in the smoking lounge. I didn’t smoke, but my Mother had for years so it didn’t bother me much. “Why in the hell did you tell that guy what you had? You need to learn how to act composed at the table.” “I didn’t know what else to do. It didn’t feel right lying to the guy.” “That’s because you’re a good kid. This is poker, buddy. You can’t ever feel bad about taking someone’s chips, or else you’ll never succeed at this game.” “Well what should I have done then? What should I have said?” “For now, the next time that happens, don’t say a word. Just stare at the board until the other player makes a decision. You’re clearly not capable of table talk, yet. If you feel like you have to respond and can’t ignore the other player any longer, then just use my line and then tell him it’s on him.” “What’s your line?” “Well, I can’t lose if you fold.” And I’ll never forget that line. I still use it sometimes to this day. You have to understand that this happened back when you could actually engage your opponent verbally when it was heads up. Now, you can’t discuss the contents of your hand whatsoever. That era has ended and table talk is not what it once was. In my opinion, I firmly believe that this particular change in poker was not a positive one. It made poker really fun and really interesting. It was a large contributor to the social element of the game. And it felt really, really, good when you would successfully talk your opponent into making the move you wanted them to make. Andy continued smoking his cigarette while telling me I should cash out and go home with a huge win. “How much more money do you really expect to make? You’re way too deep now in this game where everyone is going to start shoving on you. Trust me, cash out and hang out until your friend is done playing so you can go home.” “What else am I supposed to do? Isn’t everyone going to get mad that I’m leaving?” “Who cares? Sit at the table and fold everything except Aces or Kings for the next hour. If you pick up one of those hands, just go all-in. Trust me, you have nothing more to gain and only something to lose if you continue playing. For the next hour, just watch everyone else and how they play and what they showdown. You might learn something.” And that’s exactly what I did. I folded every hand for the next hour, then cashed out. While I was hanging out and railing Andy and my friend who I came with, I realized that I needed to buy a poker table and the same type of cards they were using at Fox’s — they used KEM bridge size, jumbo index. Something I had learned about from picking Big Mike’s brain. I figured this would be a perfect time to invest in a real poker table, considering that I just cashed out $4k. Maybe I could start having cash games at my house with my friends and deal the game to practice? I already hosted tournaments at my house regularly, but never thought about hosting a cash game. Would my friends even want to play a cash game? What stakes would it be? I still need to figure out how I’m going to learn how to deal. Hmm, I’ve got some thinking to do. To be continued… Next: Inside Underground NY Poker #2
I’m 30 years old and I have been gambling for more than half of my life. I’ve lost about 700 dollars this month playing poker and blackjack on online casinos. I’ve had multiple years where I’ve lost more than $5k a year and I haven’t been able to accurately track my total losses, but I’d imagine there are somewhere around $30k over my life. Luckily I am not in debt, but I realize that this may not always be the case. This morning I woke up and for the first time felt compelled to seek help. I started when I was 15 years old. It was right around the time that the big online gambling boom happened in the US and I spent a lot of time as a teen on Full Tilt and Pokerstars gambling. In college the behavior continued and I found that I was particularly prone to gambling whenever a big assignment was due. Time and time again I would engage in compulsive gambling often under the influence of attention deficit disorder medication which would allow me to stay up all night and boosted my dopamine when gambling. In my twenties my gambling was sporadic. I stopped gambling for while until I moved to a new town in my mid 20s and didn’t know many people so I frequented the casino that was conveniently located between my job and my home. I’d spend entire nights gambling and drinking often times hitting my self imposed $1k debit card withdrawal limit. Fast forward to today. I’m once again in school and working full time. As is usually the case when I’m stressed and overworked, I’ve gone back to online casino especially when taking medication. I lost about 7k in 2018, 4K in 2019 and somehow have managed to stay about flat this year despite high betting volume. I don’t want to lose anymore money and most importantly time. I’m stopping today and I’m doing research on what the best form of treatment will be for me. I hope to be able to track my progress and provide updates.
Been haphazardly working on this for a few days. I am spent trying to edit it. Its not quite what I hoped for the last post but itll do. I may return and add some stuff at some point. More than likely though this account goes dormant or just becomes another troll telling you to fold pre before going dormant. Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6 Part 7 Part 8 Part 9 2018 tails off with an opportunity. My friend who owns the restaurants has a daughter who is graduating from Rice and is done with the apartment she is living in. Essentially I can take an apartment month to month and it be furnished as he will leave the bed and a few things for me. I accept this offer and head for Houston. I still have my place back home (its dirt cheap) so I am spending 4-6 weeks in Houston playing 6-7 days a week then going home to see my folks and play a couple days a week while home, there isnt much action back home unless playing capped 1-2 which is miserable. The bulk of the reason I was logging minimal hours back home is that it is capped 1-2nl and its miserable. Ill never know how I can get stuck 2k in that game but I have done it many times and its just a terribly boring grind. I play PLO almost exclusively once arriving in Houston. I start logging more and more hours as the year has gone on. I have had some great months and some break even months. I am currently playing 6 days a week at minimal and it is the first time in a long time I have actually put considerable hours in and its been paying off. I have been playing NLH over the last couple months after the biggest room shut down (it reopens later this week though) as all the plo studs have been pushed into one location and the games havent been exactly great most of the time and I have the humility to know where I am going to fare better so I have only been playing PLO when the game is really good. I was on a bit of a plo skid after the big room shut down, ran pretty bleh also. Probablyyyyy (means obviously) was getting a bit sloppy (run good play well run bad play bad, thats poker in a nut shell) and gambling a bit too loosely. I know I ran nut full into quads twice in 3~ hours of play (allllmost folded one of them but was a weird spot vs unknown) and 4 times in 10 days. So I have been playing NLH just waiting out this reopening to see what shakes out of it. Only hand of PLO I will share is one with my crypto friend (he comes down and plays once in a while, he was living near me in SW MO but has relocated so I dont get to see him a ton) just because it is nuts. Ive never seen it or found anyone who has. 1-3plo and we are 3k effective iirc. I 3b an open with AAQQ one suit and my friend flats in late, couple calls and someone 4b and I squeeze getting like 800~ in and my friend rips behind and I obviously know he has AAXX also but was very unhappy he did (since we are going to be an underdog to a lot of hands) We end up in a 3 way all in preflop. I tell my friend I have his aces beat, he tells me “no i have stronger aces” to which I say theres no way you have mine beat, and he again tells me he has a better hand, so I show him my AAQQ and say you cant have better than this and he says “yes I do” and shows me AAKK one suit. Never have I seen AAQQ v AAKK (both had one suit). No one I have asked has seen it either. Pretty crazy situation. I obviouslyyyy fuck him on a Q33 flop (third guy in celebrates and tables 3467 before realizing he has one out and abruptly stops his celebration). He then has zero outs on a Q turn and I scoop the pot with quads. Pretty gross hand. I just wanted to get out with a chop. Me and my friend will obviously take each others money but in reality neither of us are aiming to do so. When we are HU we just bet the nuts essentially or top pairs in NLH, but multiway its just business as usual. My crypto friend has helped me acquire some crypto over the last year (BCH is the way he says) and I am slowly stockpiling it. Its the way out of poker for me I hope. I am just turning all of my available money into crypto when I can do so. He has as much knowledge in this field as just about anyone alive, buying some crypto now probably is a good idea. Ive learned to just trust what he says about crypto as he has yet to be wrong with anything he has told me (though tether didnt crash, it started to and somehow stabilized, can kinda claim hes wrong on that one but it will happen eventually). I aspire to be living in Montana or Alaska in the near ish future. All I want to do is live a traditional lifestyle as far from the grid as possible. No smart phones no 5g towers destroying my dna no soy in every fucking bit of food I eat. I just wanna shoot some deer catch some fish and be self reliant. I am pretty black pilled & red pilled over the last few years. I believe the conspiracy theories before I believe what cnn or fox or nbc tells me. Epstein “suiciding” himself is genuinely the moment I accepted this country is gone. (In the sense that it can not be taken away from the ruling class by anything short of massive war) The most important prisoner of all time and he just “dies”. I want out basically. I want to return to the way I lived as a kid (hobbies) and just be an outdoorsman. I have become so soft over my adult life (like most men in the Western world) that I want to fix it, I just await the out to do so and obviously will turn to the method with biggest chance of quick return. Guarantee me I can work X job for 15 years and 100% be where I want or give me a 20% chance to do it in 3 years with no ability to rebound if it fails, sign me up for that 20%! My evolving opinion of the USA as a country all started with the strangling of online poker. The USA, the land of the free yet you steal my source of income, you intercept my bank wires because they came from a poker site you basically remove my right to play poker online by going after these poker sites. All because casino owners are your donors. That and the fact that money is leaving the country but I cant imagine that was a huge issue in this. Its just donors and lobbyists constructing the agenda. Online poker being snuffed out was the beginning of me realizing I am not as free as I thought. Dont get me wrong, the USA is still the greatest country on earth no ifs ands or buts about it, it just is starting to fall apart at the seams. The whole world is really. The old saying that tough times make tough men make good times make weak men make bad times. Yea were going into the last phase I am afraid. Ok that veered off course so lets wrap this up the way I intended. Its been about 14 years since I stumbled onto poker. I have had some of the best times of my life and obviously some sub par times. I have met some of the greatest people I have ever met, and I have met a few shit heads. I have a smile while writing this paragraph just remembering the good times. The bad times didnt make me smile, but in a way I think they may have saved my life. I dont think continuing a massive oxycontin habit is a recipe for a lengthy life. I had left it out but on a few occasions my brother had awaken me mid sleep telling me I am blue (skin turning blue from suppressed breathing). Angry as I was for being woken up I am glad he did. Ive mentioned my parents minimally through this, but I am one of the lucky ones in this department and am extremely grateful and proud to be their son. I wouldnt have made it where I did or survived til now without them. My dad was a farmer and fire fighter growing up and my mom took care of 3 kids and started an online business during the dot coms and is almost certainly the side of the family I got my gamble from (her father is the referenced grandfather). I have been messaged and received comments stating that this story would make a good book, I have only told a very short version of it and may designate some time one day in doing so. There is a lot of backstory that led me to poker that I never covered and a ton of stuff from the hay days I never covered either, honestly it does make me want to rewrite it, every post I would remember something I forgot to add. Also when I started this there were references of an old thread that people thought were my work and would be me seeking money via patreon or whatever else to do these. I seek nothing, it was therapeutic to write these albeit time consuming. I gained plenty from writing these though and it would be the reason I turn it into a book. I am 33 years old now and somehow look like I am 25. When people say I look young I just say “drugs drinking smoking and gambling is the way”. I feel like I am 50 sometimes though. I have so much nerve damage from the opiates. Twitches here and there, constantly kicking when going to sleep. I refuse to quit smoking cigarettes for some reason. Its another thing that just goes with poker for me. Every 60-75 minutes I pop up step outside have a smoke and read some junk online. I often think back of playing the 2nl tables when selling my play chips. The awful tournament chops I willingly did. That first 3000$ check I cashed while my bottom lip trembled at the hoards of cash the teller was handing me. My first good live cash. My first 100k bankroll. My first 100k in cash money. My frivolous purchases that I shrugged off thinking no big deal I will just click some buttons online and make it back. The genuine love I had for poker and learning it and finding ways to exploit it. I really miss the love I had for poker. Its genuinely been my last passion in life. I hope that if the future goes as I hope it does that I can find renewed love for poker if it becomes leisure, though I dont foresee that happening. It is just a job that I have started to like less and less just like anyone else who does the same thing day in day out. Though I am finding ways to enjoy it more and appreciate my ability to do so. I drive past homeless people too and from and just remind myself that I am blessed on this earth. If I were to lose my legs tomorrow I would still be one of the lucky ones. It is easy to get caught up in our own strife and become overly self involved. We are selfish creatures, we like to think our struggles were worse than others and that we overcame better than others would have (hence why every jackass in a poker room will tell you a bad beat story like you give a fuck, dont be that guy, strangers dont care how you lost a pot with KK to A7o on the bubble, remember what my late grandfather said, “nobody at this fucking table gives a fuck what youre folding” and likewise for how you lost). I realize the opposite the older I get. I was dealt a great hand in life and played it poorer than most would have. My years of struggle I handled worse than a lot of people would have. The worst days in my life would have been the best days for some. Only once realizing how lucky I am was I able to just forget about what happened and move on. I have had a pretty good attitude towards everything for a couple years now and things slowly get better as I do, and you cant fake a good attitude. I still pout and get upset from time to time when things arent going well but I snap out of it faster than I was before and usually with a genuine smile knowing it is ridiculous to be upset. If I can give one parting message it is to learn to be accountable for your actions and never take opiates when you can avoid them. I was a normal guy before opiates and opiates turned me into a flaky bastard who couldnt be held to account for my actions. It turned me into a whiny bitch millennial and I have had to break out of that. You get out of life what you put in and theres some variance along the way obviously but we are all controllers of our fate and it takes being a man to realize that. It is so easy to point the finger elsewhere, yet so hard to be accountable for our actions. No matter what life throws at you we are all capable of standing up and fighting it. Human evolution wasnt full of lazy hedonistic people, it was full of bold resilient survivors facing difficulty that 1% of the population could handle today. We owe it to our ancestors and loved ones to keep fighting at all times. If I can give one more parting message for this thread this is directed at everyone aspiring to be professional poker players. Dont do it... if you are capable of beating poker your intelligence should be more of an asset to you in many other walks of life. Just be willing to find something that excites you to learn about it like poker does. For every guy making a million in poker year in and out theres 1,000 of me making enough to survive and for every 1,000 of me theres 100,000 fish/rec players and of that 110,001 player pool the only ones having fun are the fish and the rec players. Thats the truth. Just use your abilities to make money on the side of something, just use poker to fuel investments or savings. Do the exact opposite of what I did basically. Also for anyone who plays, try to pride yourself on being well behaved at the table. Never tell a fish he played bad, never get angry at a fish when he wins, never give the fish any animosity (aside from maybe some edgy attitude so he doesnt get too friendly and not want to gamble with you). Make everyone at your table enjoy your presence, poker is a slowly dying game and needs every player it can get on the local levels. If you are the fish, dont hesitate to move tables if someone does berate you, if youre a rich fish just plug that idiots stack you took in the tip box and then move tables. Youll tilt him far worse when you do that, or if you want some next level shit just cash out and give his chips to every other player at the table in cash split evenly. Make a fool of any jackass who opens his mouth and make sure he knows hes acting like a child over minuscule amounts of money while playing a game hes not emotionally mature enough to play. (I type that as a notorious tilt monkey from online days, I used to buy a few keyboards and mouses at a time because I snapped keyboards over my head or knee and threw my mouse against a wall more times than I can count, kinda bummed I left that story out, it was constant and usually the keyboards would get broken when I was typing in chat too much and tilted, just break it so I couldnt type anymore, then find its replacement as soon as my opponent said something I couldnt ignore haha) One more thing on priding yourself on making your presence enjoyable at the table. Theres a ton of meh regs at nlh who are just robotic drones, never say anything and will never go far in poker for that reason. If you notice one thing about the bigger names, they are almost always all fun players to play with. Hell theres a group of big timers who play nose bleeds and probably have the talent of some 100nl regs online, all because they are fun to play with and when youre fun to play with the rec players love to play with you and you can build your own games full of fish youll give a good time. Stop being lame, NLH isnt a game for hoodies and headphones and never saying a word. Crack jokes and have fun, its the only thing that gets me through sessions these days. The only days that sessions fly by are when the tables having fun, and when everyone is having fun the chips fly around a bit more. Ill continue playing until I cant spot a bad reg I suppose. Ill always have a way to make some extra cash if I need it and I am thankful for that, I just look forward to not needing to for too much longer. Lets get on with this next crypto bubble already I say! Thanks for reading these.
Previous: Inside Underground NY Poker #10 If you'd like to see this story get produced, please consider pledging to my Patreon. More details there. The link is https://www.patreon.com/undergroundpoker Thank you for all of your support. Spades — 1.10 I had just woken up minutes ago, still not yet home from my first trip to Turning Stone. I had just received an unexpected text from Andy — he said that he wouldn’t be playing at Spades any longer, and to call him as soon as possible. I immediately texted him back. “What happened? Is everything okay?” “Are you alone?” “No, I’m still on my way back from Turning Stone. I’m in the car with my friends.” “Call me when you’re done.” An hour or so later, all of my friends have been returned home, except for Theo. We drive to his house and he puts the car into park. I say goodbye, and he makes his way towards his front door, while I hop into my driver’s seat. I take off and instantly give Andy a call. “Andy, what’s up. I just dropped everyone off. What’s going on?” “Well, I won’t be playing at Spades anymore. Gonna start playing in Queens again. What I’m about to tell you *has to* stay between us, alright?” “Of course. What happened? You okay?” “Yeah, I’m fine, but again, this must stay between us. You’re a good kid and I don’t want to see anything bad happen to you, so I hope you take this piece of advice. You should find a new place to deal. It’s not safe at Spades.” “What do you mean? Why?” “How well do you know Matt? Do you guys work together at all?” “I don’t know him that well. Sometimes he’s working when I deal the tournaments, but for the most part I don’t really know him.” “Buddy, I’ve known Matt for a long time — you know that. I bailed him out of jail earlier today.” Andy proceeds to tell me the entire story. The night before, Matt had been driving home shortly after the game broke at Spades. Unfortunately, he got pulled over while he was riding dirty. Normally, this wouldn’t be a problem in suburban Long Island, however, Andy informed me that Matt also had a drug habit. When the officer who stopped him approached his window, it was crystal clear that Matt wasn’t sober. The officer, doing his due diligence, was no longer interested in simply issuing a ticket. He gave Matt a breathalyzer test — no alcohol was present. The subsequent sobriety test resulted in a failure, giving the officer probable cause to search Matt’s car. The cop found a bag of prescription pills, which contained enough to reasonably suspect that they were being sold. In addition to the amount of cash found in Matt’s pocket, something to the tune of a few thousand bucks, the officer reasonably came to the conclusion that Matt was a drug dealer. For all intents and purposes, that’s exactly what Matt appeared to be in this situation. He was about to be arrested for some serious charges — felonies — that could ruin his life. However, Matt vehemently denied the cop’s allegations of any drugs being sold, and said that he could explain the situation. However, he couldn’t provide a reason as to why he had so much cash on him. He was then arrested and brought down to the precinct for questioning. During Matt’s interrogation, it became quite obvious to him that he was going to get booked for drug distribution charges. In Suffolk County, Long Island, this is no joke. In most cases, it’ll end with you saying goodbye to your freedom. At first, and this is from Andy’s account of things, Matt tried lying and said that he was simply playing poker at a home game, which was why he had so much cash on him. He confessed that he had a drug problem, but that he wasn’t a drug dealer. The questioning detective didn’t buy his story. Matt didn’t have a real job that issued W2’s, so there was no sense in trying to lie about it, and he couldn’t provide a phone number for the host of the alleged home game that he was supposedly coming from — an easy and immediate way to prove his claims to be true. The detective wished Matt good luck in court. In a final and desperate attempt to try and walk away from his predicament as cleanly as possible, Matt played the only card up his sleeve, and offered the truth about the whole situation. He told the questioning detective that he wasn’t a drug dealer — he just had a drug problem — again, the only consistent part of his story. He revealed that he was driving around so late and had so much cash on him because he worked for an illegal poker club. The detective regained interest in what Matt had to say. He ultimately wound up coming clean and answering all of the detective’s questions, some of which had certain stipulations attached to them. In exchange for providing more information about Spades, Matt was ultimately booked for only a measly DUI — a misdemeanor which often resulted in nothing more than an inconsequential fine and rarely probation, if you had a halfway decent lawyer. In case you don’t know, there is a massive difference between a DWI and a DUI in the county of Suffolk. Judges are incredibly harsh on people who drink and drive, even first time offenders. DUI’s on the hand, which explicitly define a difference between alcohol versus drugs, are not looked upon the same way in the eyes of the judicial system. In Matt’s case, the detective made sure not to book him with any illegal drug allegations. This meant that a lawyer could easily provide a story of innocence to a judge, that Matt had simply taken a drive to the convenience store, after taking some sleeping medication. The result of this situation would undoubtedly be a measly fine and an ACOD — adjournment in contemplation of dismissal. In other words, stay out of trouble for a year and all of your charges will be dismissed. Needless to say, a good lawyer is always worth the cost. Matt spent the rest of the night in the precinct’s holding cell, and was brought to court later on in the morning. Not yet having hired a lawyer, the judge presiding over Matt’s case surprisingly did not grant him OR, short for “Own Recognizance”, which means you get to walk out of the courthouse by simply legally promising to appear in court at a later date. Judges grant OR depending on a number of factors. Matt didn’t have an existing criminal record, however, he also didn’t have any ties to the community, a history of meaningful employment, or a lawyer to essentially vouch for him, and as a result, the judge set bail on Matt to the amount of $5,000. This meant that he would be held in the county jail until his designated court date, unless he could pay his own bail with only the cash that he had on him at the time of his arrest. Matt didn’t actually live in Long Island, he resided in Queens, which meant that he didn’t know anybody in the area who could post his bail for him. At the time your bail is set by the judge, you can usually walk out of there the same day, as long as you are able to have someone post your bail before the court’s end of day time — usually 5PM. If you can’t get someone to post your bail in time, your situation will become much more complicated. You will be sent to the county jail where you will be searched, stripped of all your clothes, issued a prisoner’s uniform, and assigned either a cell or pod. You’ll stay there until either your court date arrives, or someone posts your bail for you. Nothing about this is process is expedient, whatsoever. Not wanting to spend any length of time in jail, Matt decided to call the only person he knew who would be in Long Island and also have access to at least $5,000 in cash — that would be Andy. “So, I bailed him out, which funny enough, left him in debt to me, yet again, for $2k. Although, I made it clear I wasn’t bailing his ass out if he couldn’t immediately pay me back.” “Holy ****, man. What happened to his car, did the cops impound it?” “No, actually. They left it on the grass, on the side of the state parkway.” “How’d you find all of this out? Why would Matt tell you any of this, I don’t get it. Couldn’t he just have told you that he got arrested for a DUI?” “Absolutely, but then I would wonder why he had to suddenly quit working at Spades, immediately after bailing him out of jail. He couldn’t take the risk of me asking questions.” “Why would he have to do that? What’s that got to do with anything?” “It’s too big of a liability for him, now. Buddy, don’t you get it? It’s a 100% chance at this point. An investigation on the club will be conducted, if one wasn’t already being done, which would surprise me if that were the case. It’s only a matter of time now before the cops come in and shut the place down. If that happens when Matt is there, he’ll be arrested.” “I already know that dealing is illegal. The cops let dealers go, you even said so yourself. You don’t remember? The first time I ever met you, after I told you how old I was — you asked me if I knew that it was illegal to run a game. When I answered “no”, you literally gave me a checklist of things to do, in case I ever found myself in a raid.” “I remember, and yes, cops *usually* let the dealers go. However, if anything should happen at Spades, it’ll probably be after Matt gets a sentence on his court case. I’ll bet you 10-to-1 for any amount, that he gets at the absolute worst, sentenced to probation. If he gets arrested, it will absolutely end with him getting a jail sentence.” “Oh.” “Yeah, buddy. There are a ton of other clubs, all over, where he can find another job. And it would be in his best interest to not stick around, especially after narc’ing to the cops. That’s why I’m telling you all of this — find another job, I don’t wanna see you get arrested. You never know, some cop might want to teach you a lesson to stay out of trouble, because you’re so young and caught up in all of this. It wouldn’t surprise me, at all.” “Can you help me get a dealing job at another club?” “Yeah, no problem, but it’ll be in Queens. I’ll see what I can do and get back to you. There’s no way I could get you into Fox’s — not yet, anyway. You’ve gotten great at dealing tournaments, but you don’t have enough experience dealing cash.” “I know. Well, **** man. My mind is blown. I was expecting you to tell me something like you had a disagreement with Vinny, or you wanted to renegotiate your agreement with Gary, or… something like that. Nothing like this.” “Yeah, well, I wouldn’t have told you at all, but… well, you know how I am. There aren’t too many people in the poker community who I actually respect. You’re a smart kid, don’t **** up your future.” “Well, thanks man. I appreciate you looking out. Please let me know, and get back to me as soon as you can, if you find another place where I can deal.” “I will. And buddy, one last thing. If you tell anyone about this conversation, I’ll never speak to you again. I trust you. Don’t let me down.” — he says jokingly, yet with authority, in a rather stern tone of voice. “What conversation?” “Perfect. Later, buddy.” I end the phone call, closing my Nokia 6126 flip phone. I begin to think, weighing out my options and trying to come to a decision, in order to formulate some type of plan. If you were to ask people who know me well, to describe me in one word, the obvious answer would be — cunning. I’ve always considered that to be one of my strengths, to be frank, it has allowed me to capitalize on many of the opportunities that have come my way. I’m an honest person, generally forthcoming when it’s paramount, and take comfort in believing that people are generally good-natured. Sometimes, the smartest thing to do is to tell people what they want to hear. As Canada Bill Jones once said, “It’s immoral to let a sucker keep his money.” In my paradigm of the world, deceiving someone isn’t even remotely the same as intentionally withholding information or being purposefully vague. Come to think of it, that might be what makes me a decent poker player. Taking everything Andy had just told me into consideration, I came to a final decision. I was going to continue dealing at Spades, regardless of if he could get me another dealing job somewhere else. If he were to ask me if I had quit, I would respond by saying something like, “Do I look that dumb?” Dealing at Spades was consistent, lucrative, and simply just too close to where I lived to give up. I did, however, decide to put an end to my ignorance about what I did to make money — cold, hard cash to be exact, that I could earn pretty much anywhere I could find a poker game. A realization that led to my deep appreciation for unmistakably skilled dealers, and floors who possessed vast, intricate knowledge about the rules and procedures of the game. I did some research on the legality of poker in New York — I wanted to be certain of any and all legal consequences that were attached to running a game. I scoured the internet for everything I could find in order to educate myself. I even had a serious conversation with Jennifer’s father, a successful lawyer, who made a few personal calls and got me in touch with a colleague of his. That was how I met Rich. Rich was a young, yet successful criminal attorney who practiced law in New York City. He was in his late 30’s and always wore an expensive suit — a bit of a hefty guy, prominently intelligent, articulate, and was way better at poker than I was. He was on Andy’s level, without question. When I first met him, one of the first things he told me about himself was that he was able to pay his bills, shortly after graduating law school, by playing in underground clubs. I know, it’s incredibly cliche. However, back in 2007, if a reg in a Manhattan-based club was a lawyer in their mid to late 30’s, it would actually be surprising to find out that they *didn’t* pay their law school tuition, student loans, or bills by playing poker. In other words, back then, any winning reg that practiced law and was of the right age, most likely adhered to the stereotype. You’d be surprised to know how many young law students were inspired by the movie Rounders. Rich and I would later on become poker buddies, and play in a ton of different games together. More relevantly, he was someone who would always show up and play in a new game to help me out — something that facilitated the acquisition of many of my dealing jobs. No pun intended, Rich had money and played stakes as high as $25/$50 NL regularly. He played in bigger games actually, but, was only comfortable playing up to $25/$50 in private or underground games. For him, anything bigger required playing in a casino. My first conversation with Rich would take place over the phone. Jennifer’s father set everything up and made it *very* clear to call him on a specific date, at a very specific time. I would be getting free legal advice, as a favor, and I was not to waste this man’s time. “Hello, this is Rich. Is this Julius?” “Yes, Hi. Thank you for taking my call, I really appreciate your time. I won’t take up too much of it.” “Not a problem, whatsoever. I’ve been informed that you are looking for legal advisement in the scope of poker games. Is that correct?” “Yeah. To be clear, these poker games are not friendly home games. They are ran as businesses and located in commercial areas.” “I see. Are you a player?” “Well, yeah. But, I’m also a dealer. I make money in the form of tips, from dealing the game. The players who win a hand will usually give me a few dollars after every hand. And — ” “Julius, let me stop you right there. Are you familiar with the Mayfair Club?” “Of course.” “I used to play there regularly. You’re preaching to the choir. I’m well aware of how these games operate, and fortunately for you, also experienced in the legal affairs that can manifest from them.” “Wow, a real life one-outer. What are the odds? So then, can you tell me what kind of consequences I could face from dealing?” “Do you have a criminal record?” “No, I’ve never been in trouble with the law before. I’ll be 18 very soon, if that means anything.” “Pardon me, you’re 17 years old?” “Yes, sir.” — I tell him about my family, my grandmother, hosting tournaments at my house, essentially rationalizing why my age is not a big deal. “Interesting. How long have you been dealing?” “Not too long. Less than a year, but I don’t see myself slowing down anytime soon.” “I see. Where do you deal?” “At a club called Spades in Long Island. I deal the tournaments, three times per week.” “Spades? No kidding. I know all about Spades. I play there whenever I visit my parents on the island. As you put it, what are the odds?” “Yeah, well, a friend of mine who plays for a living is trying to get me another dealing job in Queens. I feel like I might be putting myself at more of a risk, that’s why I needed to talk to you.” “I understand. Well, let me educate you about the law. In the state of New York, it is completely legal to play poker. You and I could set up a table in the middle of Times Square and play heads up. Inherently, playing poker isn’t the issue. The concern arises when someone starts profiting off of the game by taking rake. That individual is the one who is breaking the law, and can be charged with the promotion of gambling to various degrees, all of which can result in different consequences. It’s important that I point out that keeping a credit book is also illegal, in which you can be charged with the possession of gambling records. You don’t run the floor at all, do you?” “No, not yet.” “Not yet. I admire your ambition. Well, that’s a good thing. That means your legal risk is minimal.” “So then, I’m not breaking the law because I don’t get any of the rake, right?” “No, not exactly. The legal verbiage used, in the New York State Penal Code, to describe what actually constitutes the promotion of gambling is incredibly vague. However, legal precedents have been established that demonstrate that the court is more than willing to charge you with a crime, even if you never see the literal “profits” of the game. It’s uncommon, but it can certainly happen. For example, if the landlord of a rental property that houses a game was aware that it was being used for illegal gambling activity, they would certainly be in violation of the law. Even if the landlord only collected rent from their tenant, it would still be considered as profiting from the game. It’s very difficult to prove, but nevertheless still illegal.” “I gotcha. So, receiving tips from the players is illegal and puts me at risk.” “Correct. To be exact, it puts you at risk of being charged with the promotion of gambling in the second degree, a misdemeanor that carries a maximum sentence of up to one year in jail. It’s worth mentioning that the law doesn’t care if you’re a first time offender, or if you have no existing criminal record — anyone who gets charged can receive that sentence. In reality, it’s *extremely* rare to receive a jail sentence for that charge, but it’s still possible. I’m not trying to scare you, however, I wouldn’t be doing my job if I were to leave anything unclear.” “Wow. How often do people go to jail for this?” “Almost never. As I said, it’s extremely rare. The police will usually let the dealers go free, if that is, in fact, the complete extent of their involvement. What usually happens, if you even make it to this stage of the judicial system, is that you’ll receive a fine and be on your way. Even repeat offenders usually just get another fine. If you receive a cut of the rake, but are caught dealing at the time of your arrest, then it’s a different story. I’m not going to go over that scenario, because you told me that you don’t get any of the rake, correct?” “Right. Okay, then. So, to be clear — at the absolute worst, I could go to jail for a year.” “Yes, at the absolute worst. However, I can’t imagine a situation that ends with someone like you going to jail for this. You’re a minor, you have a clean record, and I suspect that the police would just let you go and call your parents, rather than arresting you. I’m just speculating about that, to be clear. Even if you were to get arrested, I’m all but certain that the police would still let you go. Any decent attorney could demonstrate that you’re a minor being used as a tool, by a conniving adult who is taking advantage of you.” “Are you trying to say that I’m a victim?” “I’m saying that that’s the way you would be seen in the eyes of the court, which is why you’ll most likely be let go, should you even get arrested.” “Ah, okay. I see. Well, Rich, I can’t thank you enough for taking the time to help me. You’ve given me some peace of mind. I really appreciate it.” “Not a problem, Julius. I would have told you all of this at the table, had you been my dealer.” “Oh, you still play?” “Absolutely. Currently, twice a week in Midtown. Why don’t you take down my personal cell number? If you actually find yourself in need of a lawyer for anything poker related, please don’t hesitate to call me.” “Awesome. Thanks, Rich. Before I let you go, do you play online?” “To be completely candid, I actually have Full Tilt running on my laptop, as we speak. I’ll usually sit at a couple of tables while I eat my lunch. Nothing serious.” “You’re joking, right?” “Not in the slightest.” The conversation went on for a while longer. We talked more about poker, the underground community, and exchanged Full Tilt usernames. The conversation ended with Rich asking me if I could bring him to Spades, the next time he was on the island. The club was in a different location when he had last come around to play. Rich actually did have Full Tilt opened in the background during our conversation. He had arranged for me to call him during his lunch break, which was when he would keep a few tables open, and play only if he happened to pick up Aces or Kings. Now that I was well informed about the legal risks I was taking, I felt very confident about sticking to my decision. I was sure now, I wasn’t going to give up my job at Spades. Almost a month later at the club, on a warm, weekday evening, I was sitting in a cash game during the break of the tournament. It was remarkably busy that night, and there were a lot of new faces playing. Every week was busier than the last. When I had arrived at the club to setup, Vinny had asked me if I would be okay with getting bought into the cash game instead of working. He explained that he needed someone to deal in order to work off a debt that they owed. I told him it was fine — I’d get to take a night off while freerolling in a cash game. Shortly after the break ended, I hear Vinny yelling at the entire room. “HEY! YO! WHO IS THAT GUY HOLDING THE DOOR OPEN ON THE SECURITY MONITORS? LOOK! DOES ANYBODY HERE KNOW WHO THAT IS?” — pointing to the flatscreen that displayed the security camera feeds. All of the players were looking around at each other, but nobody answered. “****!” Vinny makes a bolt for the steel door, closes it behind him, and begins running down the stairs to stop this unknown guy from holding the door open any longer. The entire room is watching this happen in live action, on the security monitor. Each of the four sections on the screen displayed a feed from a different camera. Just as Vinny reached the bottom of the stairs, a line of a dozen or so SWAT officers appears on the bottom left section of the monitor. The officer at the front of the line is carrying a bulletproof shield, they all have helmets on, and it’s clear that they are well-prepared for action. We all watch as Vinny collides into the SWAT team, face first, only to get MOWED down by the entire line. He got pummeled — it looked painful. SWAT makes its way up the stairs and over to the steel door. *BOOM* — A loud bang is coming from the steel door, as a huge dent appears simultaneously. *BOOM* — The door becomes bent in half now. *BOOM* — The steel door violently swings open, and pieces of the wall fly off into the air. About 12 or so SWAT officers flow into the club. As the sound of their boots hitting the wood floor fills the silence of the room, they begin to draw their rifles on each table, making sure that everybody is surrounded. “NOBODY ****ING MOVE! PUT YOUR HANDS IN THE AIR! DO IT NOW!” To be continued… Next: Inside Underground NY Poker #12
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