Friday, February 10, 2006

No One Can Make You Feel Inferior Without Your Consent

"Do what you feel in your heart to be right- for you'll be criticized anyway. You'll be damned if you do, and damned if you don't." --Eleanor Roosevelt
When it comes to online activities, I've always been more of a "giver" than a "taker." There are some trolls and bottom feeders online who come to a site, suck everything they can out of volunteer posters and never give back to the community.

I have always gone the other way. I am a giver, not a taker. Sure, I love it when I pose a question on 2+2 and get some great responses. But mostly, I'm the one giving responses, not the one asking for more. Some bottom feeders suck the blood out of a turnip, then never return.

I've been on the Internet for over ten years now. I've given quite a bit of myself to the online world, at large. I am extremely candid, and blunt to a fault. Unfortunately, not everyone appreciates this.

Seven years ago I gave, gave, gave to several medical forums. After almost five years of this, and a lot of heartache, barely getting anything in return, I gave up. I walked away. I still get e-mails periodically from someone claiming I "saved their life." It doesn't seem that they could possibly be talking about me, I am so detached from the situation today. It's almost like I was another person.

Unfortunately, these acute medical condition communities seem to be populated with bottom feeders. They were just never happy. They complained, whined and cried. They took and took, then whined some more, no matter how much the "givers" helped. The chronically ill, unfortunately, seem to be weak individuals. I don't know if they were born that way, or if being ill for so long has taken the life out of them, and they simply have no spine. They cannot do for themselves, they expect everything to be done for them.

Moving from this type community to the serious poker community was a boom for me. What a switcheroo! I was constantly surrounded by "strong" individuals. Sure, there were still trolls and bottom feeders. I still "gave" more than I ever got back, but at least these people had real, strong, willful personalities. They listened! They actually respected my advice and gave back! Wow.

Lately, I have gotten involved in a community that I should have never involved myself with. They are weak; pathetic really. They suck the life out of me. They take, take, take and never give anything in return. They are mostly people with extremely fragile personalities. They need to be coddled and told how great they are at all times. If I dare say how I feel (which is all the time), they flame me all over the Internet and write hate mail. This, after having ASKED me what I thought.

So I'm making some changes. These people are not in my life anymore. I should have done it a long time ago, but a few individuals in their community are actually wonderful, strong human beings.

I have never been able to function well with an albatross hanging around my neck. I don't do well with weak people. Not only do they not get my humor, and think I'm putting them down all of the time, but they think that every reference to something negative, no matter how trivial, is all about them.

They've been bringing me down for the last two years and I should never have let it get this far. I should have cut them off long ago.

Two Plus Two has always been a fantastic outlet for me. I actually like the way it is run and the core group. Mason, David, Dr. Al, Ray, Mat and so many others have been a godsend to my life. Instead of giving back 100% of myself in return for their friendship, I have actually been giving myself to the albatross, the monkey hanging on my back.

The same goes for the pro circuit players I have met over the past two years. I could have helped people like Max, Ted, Barry, Shirley and John so much more if I hadn't felt this horrible obligation.

Just two weeks ago I was at Commerce and talking to people who really try to help me in every way possible. "You need a buy-in? Just say the word..." Those are the people I should be aligning myself with, not this horrible dead weight.

The fact is, I DON'T need the buy-in, but I love it that there are people who actually BELIEVE in me, instead of putting me down at every opportunity.

I sat down with John Cernuto at Commerce every day that I was there. I rubbed his back when he was stuck. I sat behind him and cheered him on. We talked about his recent gastric bypass operation and how he was feeling weak and lethargic. I recommended a certain type of protein that he hadn't tried yet, and how to mix it with cold coffee or have Starbucks make it in their machine (paying for the shots of espresso, of course), in order to keep his blood sugar stable, yet give him the energy and life that he needs at this time.

Talking to him, and others, who actually give BACK, made me realize that I have let the leeches take over my life. And suck the life out they did.

Suddenly at Commerce I realized that I need to be giving to back to these people. I know that three of them actually needed my help while I was there. They sought me out for advice or even just to give me pointers for play. These people are giving, as well as taking, and I need to be able to give back.

It's unfortunate that the weak minded people in the world drag down the strong ones. But that is the way it is. I've made this declaration about three times now in the past year, but always I've gone back to helping the leeches during a large part of my time. No more.

I won't explain myself or try to justify myself to the ones who can't be strong anymore. I won't constantly remind you that I'm not talking about YOU, I'm talking about myself, when I seem overly critical or harsh.

You won't drag me down anymore, because I won't stoop to your level.


"Integrity is a good shield" --James Michener

Cancer Help Requested

I'm a big proponent of personal responsibility. I can't stand the way our society has managed to shift the blame to everyone else. Read any newspaper. Watch TV. No one ever just says, "Yeah, you're right, it's my fault and I take the blame!" I believe this will cripple our society in the future (as if it already hasn't, lol).

One thing I try to keep in mind at all times is that I'm not always correct, and I should take the blame as fast as possible when I'm wrong, then immediately go about apologizing to the offended party. I have no problem whatsoever admitting when I'm wrong, nor apologizing about it.

Take that PLO8 tourney we played last month. I said a couple of things that I shouldn't have said. I wrote up an apology to the poker blogging community at large, then published it as soon as I possibly could.

I also believe in taking responsibility for things that aren't necessarily even "my fault" and refuse to place the blame higher if I can simply stop the buck here. Why whine to a complaining customer that the mistake "wasn't my fault" and that I will transfer him or her to the responsible party when I am able to apologize for the inconvenience and take care of the situation right here and now?

In that vein, I feel responsible for not addressing a few issues here that should have been taken care of a week or more ago.

I get this odd feeling when someone else tells me that they are suffering from cancer, or that they are terminally ill. It's like that pre-vomit feeling one gets. The bile rises and my body shudders slightly. I almost want to cry. Maybe because I don't cry I have a worse psychological response? I don't know what it is, but I guess the whole cancer thing is still too close for me to respond in the correct manner immediately.

Today I'm ready to take responsibility.

So without further ado, here is my belated message.

On February 2nd, Glyphic posted a plea for help. Obviously Christine is not being offered much hope, but this is her only hope, and I thought she would get an outpouring of emotional support. Instead, Glyphic got one spammer comment, and mine. Sad. If a "popular" blogger announces that her pet hamster died, she gets 50 comments. What a world we live in.
On January 31st, it was announced that a member of the Full Tilt Forum is currently at Johns Hopkins being treated for Leukemia. She, also needs a bone marrow transplant. I was asked to help spread the news, yet I put it off for days. I apologize.

It makes me sick that I put these messages off, although I have nothing but time on my hands. I am also humiliated that I could continue to be part of a community that constantly ignores emergency requests like the ones above, in favor of posts about drinking contests, joke "charity" events and insulting pictures. I am guilty of this.

While we all must stay humorous at times in order to cope with catastrophic things that happen in our lives (Bill's parody of my cancer diagnosis), when it ALL becomes a big joke, and I start purposely ignoring real requests for help, something is definitely not right.

I am humbled and humiliated. I apologize to the community, and I hope to face these real issues when help is first asked of me in the future.


Thursday, February 09, 2006

Chilly Humor

Don't miss Chilly! I love how he picks up on my abuse of LOL and smileys :) haha!

And it's ALL about ME (feeds my narcissistic personality).

Felicia :)

Thank You, Sir. May I Have Another?

I continue to run well in Omaha. It doesn't seem to matter if I simply sit for five minutes at an online table, play live, switch from PLO8 to PLO for a juicy game, the stakes I play or anything else under the sun. I'm just running good, which is a whole lot better than running bad, lol.

At Commerce, I saw a guy only willing to go three bets with the ace high flush in LO8. Most of the table berated him, because although there was a straight flush possible, the players were extremely live and would call down with second, third and fourth nut hands (both low and high, but especially low).

I never berate anyone when I play poker. It's much more than refusal to tap the glass. Anyone who has read this journal from it's beginning know those reasons. If you haven't started at the beginning, and don't know much about me, well, that is your loss, I suppose, lol. Seriously, I'm not sure why anyone reads this trainwreck, but c'est la vie.

After the hand was shown down, and the berating began, I commiserated with the winner, saying that I don't always keep raising heads-up with the ace high flush when there is a straight flush onboard either. I didn't tell him this, but most of the time I do.

In the not so distant past, I was running extremely bad in O8 and a funny (not then, but looking back) quirk happened.

I had the ace high flush in an online LO8 game. I kept raising, although we weren't allowed unlimited raises on the river, although it was HU. I think we put in our four bets and that was that. He scooped me with the nut low and the straight flush. No biggie, next hand please.

And next hand it was...haha! I once again had the ace high flush, someone once again had the straight flush. Yes, two hands in a row at the same table.

Now, does that make me look for MUBS? No. Although a straight flush is much easier to get in O8 than in other games, I typically keep raising. Too many times I have half or more of the pot. Too many times some dumb tamarind keeps raising with a bare nut low. I rarely get quartered with the nut low and the ace high flush. While those two back-to-back hands stand out in my mind, I will not let such an odd occurrence hinder good play on the river.

Felicia :)

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


I finally found out what hell is like. For years, I've been wondering just how literal that biblical descriptions of hell are. Is it truly a fiery furnace where the condemned is sentenced to spend eternity being tortured? A silent grave, worms crawling in and out as the condemned must lie forever contemplating his wasted life?

After seven days and nights on the Princess Sapphire playing 4/8 limit hold'em with eight players who had no idea how to play (Glenn and I were the only vets on the ship), and dealers who had never dealt poker, I can truly say that I know what hell is.

Hell is being sentenced to play 4/8 LHE on the Princess Sapphire 24 hours per day, 365 days per year, for eternity.

Felicia :)

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Commerce Observations

Commerce was, of course, a dream. Over one hundred tables of poker looseness under one roof.

There are many things I hate about Commerce, but most of them have to do with the tournament situation, not cash games. While the players at cash games can be nasty (both physically and personally), I have always been around dirty, stinky, sewer reeking players, so that is nothing new. In fact, although I have never smoked a cigarette in my life, I actually petitioned to keep some poker rooms smoking, due to the reek of smoke being preferable to the reek of some players (gangrene Joyce, Korean KK). I have never retched smelling smoke, but I have retched smelling those two smells.

Soooo, now that I have completed my happy little segue, lol...

Commerce games were fantastic. I had underestimated the Stud game. I thought I remembered just how loose and juicy it was, but I was wrong. It was even juicier than I'd recalled, although not during the day as much as in the evenings.

I was hoping that my recent study and limited practice at Bellagio would bode well for me. Had the cards broken even, I'm sure I'd have a different outcome to report, but it was not meant to be this time. When I had aces, someone was rolled up. At times I was outplayed, at times I was outdrawn. Just the luck of the draw, no "bad beat" stories to report, tons of variance and standard deviation will do ;)

When I realized that I was not properly funded for four full days of 20/40 and 30/60 Stud, I moved to a lesser variance game, Omaha 8. The 30/60 third kill was a rock garden during the day (I later heard that the 75/150 players slum at 30/60 during the daytime hours until they can get a 75/150 game going). I played only one rotation, seeing two or three players take a flop, and usually no showdown, or a HU showdown, and got the heck out of dodge.

I asked Glenn how the lower limit O8 games were going, and he smacked his lips lavaciously like a testosterone driven late teen finding internet porn for the first time.

Commerce has a weird habit of not spreading transition games. It's like they don't understand the concept of moving up gradually. So players have these huge jumps in limits, with no "in between" games. O8 was spread in 3/6 kill, 4/8 kill and 6/12 kill (unless I indicate otherwise, kill means full kill). Then the next limit is 30/60 third kill! Huh? Oh, well. I love slumming, if I'm making money! And money I did make!

While schooling hindered my progress in the Stud games, schooling simply added to my wins in O8. I love Commerce O8, and I think that is what I will stick to when I visit again. After all, a nutpeddler like me has to love the effect that schooling has at a card barn which has a reputation of calling four bets cold before every flop!

I scooped some monstrous pots. I'm talking like $500 pots in low limits! One night after some long grinding, I was up almost 3.5 racks, lol. Yes, this is from rock-of-ages over here, Ms. "I don't play a hand unless I'm a favorite" Boulder City. Lovely. Had I gotten in a few more days, I think I could have recouped all of my Stud losses, even at stakes 1/3 to 1/4th the stakes I played at Stud.

Speaking of "Studs," lol, I got to embarrass my poor friend Ted Forrest again this year.

While he was playing Chinese for $100 a point (oy, vey), we had a conversation about things that had been going on in my life since the last time we'd talking during the 2005 Series. (Yes, Ted will only talk about the "other" guy, he never wants to talk about himself.)

Anyway, I got to tell him about the fan club. And watch him turn shades of red. I even further embarrassed him by saying that the president of his "fan club" was happily married, so he wasn't going to have any luck in that regard. Poor Ted.

So there ya have it.

I'll continue to write more about our four days at Commerce when I get a mo' and can think of some stories for you. Until then, here you have the first installment of "Felicia Rants."

If you have nothing to say, and you aren't a good writer (90% of you), don't post. Your blog is boring and unoriginal. No one wants to read it. Wait until you have something real to report, if you lack the skills necessary to be an interesting writer. With public high schools regularly graduating illiterates these days, most of you cannot even type up a proper sentence, much less whip up something that is interesting to the general population. Please spare us!

Felicia :)

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Home and Barely Breathing

We're home. I am not yet recovered enough to make a trip report, but the short story is that I lost playing Stud, won playing O8.

Commerce was even more awesome than last year, if that is at all possible. Thank God for the poker boom, every kid in a backwards hat with a stupid NLHE poker shirt suddenly thinks he is Ted Forrest.

Felicia :)