Friday, June 17, 2005

Heroes at the Rio

I'm back from Vegas.

Everyone knows that poker has kind of taken a backseat in my life right now. It doesn't seem very important in the grand scheme of things.

Charlie decided to leave Vanderbilt on Wednesday. I don't blame him. If I were terminal, and laying in the ICU with machines beeping and no privacy, I'd want to go home to die, too.

He has also decided that the extra days or weeks he would get from radiation aren't worth the side effects he would suffer. Can't say I blame him there, either. It's a mature choice. At this point, it's not like they are offering him any hope, just giving him a few more days by shrinking the tumors.

Somehow whether or not I cash in a series event, whether or not I even play, doesn't seem to matter much one way or the other to me.

When I arrived at the Rio on Tuesday, Max was still in the PLO event. They were down to two tables. Shorthanded tables, at that. Max was doing well. We talked during his breaks and he promised to call Charlie. He also asked if he could stake me halfway in the 1k Stud 8. Since the structure was such a crapshoot, I let him. I usually won't allow anyone to buy any part of me (greed), but we were only starting with 1,000 in chips, and the first level was 30/60. Theoretically, we could be all-in on the first hand.

I quickly tracked down John Juanda, Evelyn Ng, John Cernuto and Marcel Luske. There are some heroes among us. I want to write about some of these heros very soon, but suffice it to say, these people went above and beyond anything I expected.

There are also some people who simply don't give a crap. I should know, I'm usually one of them. I am very preoccupied and sometimes am told things that make me say, "So what?" I don't care. I don't care about your bad beat, I don't care about how you were a 93% favorite when all of the money got in. I don't care that you drew a table filled with pros. I start detaching myself from the same group of railbirds who tell the same bad beat stories three hundred times per day.

So when people walk by me with this "I don't give a crap" attitude, when things are very important, I know exactly what they are feeling, and thinking. Maybe they are busy, and yes, this does have something to do with it at times. They are in a hurry, they have no idea the importance of the mission they are blowing off.

While players like Howard Lederer and Scott Fischman annoy me with their "F-you" attitude, I know that both of them wanted to do the right thing, they were just too preoccupied with their petty little errands to respond in the correct manner. I'll get them next time.

This trip I was strong enough to play for two days straight. Boom, boom, two full days before the hammer dropped. I must be doing something right. Last trip it was only one day, and not even a full one, at that.

Maybe by the time I make it back for the Razz event, I'll be strong for three full days.

I have decided to forgo the Sunday 2k Stud 8 event, and the Thursday 5k Stud event. I am simply not strong enough. I have to be 100% to make it through these long days, and I'm not even close.

On Wednesday when they announced that play wouldn't close until about 2am, I knew I was sunk. I felt like I'd already played a marathon by 2pm!!! I wasn't playing my best, and that is something I have to do at all times, because I'm not as good as these players. I have to be on top of my game to even have a prayer of cashing.

I'll get more into that later. Right now it simply doesn't seem to matter.

At any rate, the heroes that are reaching out right now to make Charlie's last days filled with happiness are as follows:

Marcel Luske (above and beyond anything he was asked to do)
Max Pescatori (ditto)
John Juanda (deserves a post of his own)
Evelyn Ng
Miami John Cernuto
Ted Forrest
Barry Greenstein

There are, perhaps, more of these heroes, and I will talk more about them in posts to come.

Felicia :)