Wednesday, April 30, 2008


30 APR 08

I have the week off, so I’ve been playing a little poker. I’ve been on a mini-rush, and it’s kind of a nice feeling. I had really been taking it in the shorts for quite some time back before I left for Iraq. Perhaps the break did me good.

I decided to ignore the stupid game at the Muckleshoot and try my hand at 20/40 again. Folks – this is horrible bankroll management. I do NOT have the bankroll for this game. This was clearly in the “taking a shot” mode.

I bought in for $500 (I hear The Wife cringing right now). I played for one hour.

The picture above is from when I cashed out.

I think I love Diamond Lil’s.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


Before I get to an interesting hand, let me once again mention how really great service makes me feel.

That would be awesome.

I've written about Darla before.
She's really amazing and friendly and has the best memory on the planet. I've been in Iraq since last year, but when she saw me at the table at the Muck, she immediately came over and gave me a hug before asking if I'll have my usual (two Diet Cokes if you were wondering). Darla - you are the best!

Now onto the hand.

I have been playing fairly tight (I think) at the stupid 3/5 spread game and I'm down just a little. So far I've been involved in no big pots. I'm on the button. There are 3 limpers in front of me and I raise it to $20. I get 4 callers. Five of us see a flop of Qc-8c-5c. Everyone checks to me and I make a small $20 bet into this $100 pot. The small blind (who is probably the best player at the table), raises to $60. Everyone folds to me. I debate for a small time and re-raise to $185. He just calls (?!).

What does he have? What do I have?

The turn is the seven of spades. He checks. I go all-in for my last $110. He calls.

Jack of clubs on the river (now there are 4 clubs on the board). Who won and with what?

Editors Note: I apologize if anyone read this post and wasted time trying to figure this out before I edited it. I just now corrected it (I'm famous for misremembering hands). The board did not pair up on the river. That's kind of key.

Monday, April 28, 2008

I am the Greatest Poker Player Ever

"You must be the greatest player ever."

Well, that's what the guys in seats 7 and 8 said. Here is what lead to the comment.

I'm playing 3/5 spread limit (as a quick refresher, it's called spread limit because the max bet in Washington State is $500. Max buy-in at this game is $300). I've got Ac-6c in middle position and I raise to $15. This is a small raise for this table and I expect a couple of callers. I get four.

The flop is Ad-8c-9c. I've got top pair bad kicker, but I've got the nut flush draw. I bet $25 into a $75 dollar pot. The button (and older Asian man who is an okay player, but never folds to any flop bet in position) calls. The rest fold.

The turn is the As.

This is an incredible turn card. I put him on Ace-rag (same as me, but with outs). If he has an Ace with a bigger kicker, I still have outs. If he already has the full house, so be it. I bet $40 into a $125 pot, but I'm committed at this point. He quickly raises to $200.


Well, shoot. I guess he has me beat. Doesn't he? If he is an excellent player, he has pocket 8s and reads me for a weak Ace (but if that's the case, why the huge raise? Wouldn't he want me to call?). At this point, I still think my read of Ace-rag is correct (it wasn't).

Well, I said I was committed, so I go All-In!

He does not insta-call. Sweet! He only has $100 left after the $200 raise, and he isn't pushing it all in. Wha????

He goes in the tank for a full minute and he pulls the old fake-fold move on me to try to get a read. I usually hate this move, but this time it pays off huge! I saw his bottom card - it was the 8 of diamonds. This is perfect. I'm all-in so I can't be bluffed. If he has Ace 8, he insta-calls. He might be hesitating on pocket 8s, figuring me for the bigger full house, but he's pot committed so if that was the case, he also insta-calls.

The only hand that makes sense is 8-9, and he was so pissed that he got counterfitted on the turn, that he tried to bully me out of the pot.

Here's where I get tricky and cause the entire table to think I'm the ultimate donkey. I announce that I'm on the flush draw and I show my 6 of clubs.

Remember, they have no idea that I saw his bottom card. They are all figuring him for A 10 or something similar. After a long time in the tank, he folds and I drag a huge pot.

I am NOT the greatest, but I sure don't mind basking in the glory every now and then.

Editor's Note: I fixed the hand. Of course I had the 6 of clubs (not spades). Sue me.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Ferrari Addiction

27 Apr 08

Many of my close friends know about my Ferrari Addiction. It's so bad, it deserves to be Capitalized. I will own a 360 spider some day. It's just a matter of time.

Until that day comes, I take every chance I get to see my beloved automobile. Today was the XXX Root Beer gathering in Issaquah, Washington, sponsored by Fiat NW. It was an incredible display of Italian perfection, including many different exotics from many different eras. My personal favorite was there - the 360 Modena spider (2004 model). This one will do, too - the 430 Spider (in a rare white color).

And despite my best efforts, my kids favor the Lamborghini. That perfectly sums up the difference between these two Italian beauties, if you ask me.

Friday, April 25, 2008

The Doctor's Wife

I have long lamented that my wife is defective. While most doctors have wives with spending addictions, I've got the most frugal and conservative (in dress, not politics) wife on the planet.

Well, until recently that is.

Thanks to her new-found blogging skills, and some wonderful peer pressure, she now has an honest to goodness shoe fetish. It's about damn time if you ask me.

But wait, there's more!

My hoity-toity wife just jetted off to SoCal to "spa-it-up!"

I'm so proud of the little degenerate. Wait, shouldn't I be complaining?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

White Cloud

24 Apr 08

For most of my medical career, I have had a “white cloud.” This means when I’m on call, I get very little business. I guess if you were going to plan to do something dangerous, you should find out if I’m on call that night. Your odds of getting seriously injured are certainly lower.

I’m on call today and I just finished reading out the resident. He told me the previous night he had 24 CT scans and twice as many x-rays. Last night (my night) he only had 4 CT scans and 8 x-rays.

Surely this has to be a statistical anomaly, right?

Speaking of statistical anomalies, does anyone have a good site to calculate the odds of winning (or losing) a hand? I got into an argument over a bad beat I received and wanted to show his odds at each stage of the hand. If you care (and no, I won’t pay you a dollar for this bad beat story):

Me: 10 10
Villain: K 3

The game is a full table of Limit Hold ‘em. He raised UTG pre-flop. I re-raised and three of us saw a flop of 10 3 2.

He bets and I raise. It’s a strong move with such a monster, but I knew he would re-raise. He did and I just called. The 3rd guy folded.

I lost this hand to runner runner Kings. I told him he was less than 1% after the flop. I’m too lazy to do the math to figure out just how far behind he really was.

Note: Too bad my white cloud doesn’t apply to poker.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Greatest Caption

21 Apr 08

I just saw this picture on another forum I read. Someone came up with the best caption I've ever seen.

Natalie Gulbis likes to keep her clubs in the shade.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Puyallup Fair

20 Apr 08

I could type 1000 words about the fair, but this about sums it up.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

A "Wow" Moment

We just bought a new PC - an HP with Windows Vista if you care. I turned it on and it was ready to use inside of 5 seconds!

Sure beats 5 minutes like with our Dell. I wonder if 3 GB of memory has anything to do with it?

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Dr. Chako Investment Strategy

17 Apr 08

If you come here looking for financial advice, I’m your man. In fact, I made one recent investor $25,000 in just 10 minutes. I challenge any of you to match me on that claim!

Of course, my “investor” was a large black guy with two fist-fulls of wooden-nickels* at the craps table. I rolled him 3 consecutive points before I 7’d out. You’d think he would have tossed me one of those nickels, eh?

You’d be wrong.

* That would be $5000 chips at the MGM Grand. He had just dropped a few, so he simply asked for 20 more (i.e. another $100,000).

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Why I Love Washington State

15 Apr 08

To distract you from the impending tax deadline (have I mentioned how nice it is to be married to a CPA?), let me show you one of the many reasons I love this state.

This is my birthday, April 5th.

And this is yesterday, April 14th – just 9 days later.

Sunday, April 13, 2008


12 Apr 08

My buddy Josh left last night after an awesome dinner at Diego here in the MGM. Jess had her 3 girlfriends here, including Kate, who is the spitting image of Kaylee from Firefly. So what’s a lone married guy supposed to do with 4 hot chicks (who, BTW, are all graduates from West Point) in Las Vegas?

We went to Thunder from Down Under, of course!

I felt like a total spy behind enemy lines. It was awesome! The show was very cool, and I actually had a blast. The girls were screaming when one of the dancers (is it redundant to say it was the gay one?) came over and gave me a high-five. I think there was only one other guy in the audience.

Having spent 2 hours a day in the gym over the last six months, I thought I was looking pretty good. Nope. These guys are the shit. Ripped doesn’t even begin to describe it. I was very impressed (in a totally heterosexual way, of course).

It was one of the best times I’ve had in Vegas. That said, all the girls said Chippendales was better.

Honey, you in?

Friday, April 11, 2008

Raging Solo in Vegas!

11 Apr 08

Well, technically I’m not totally solo. My buddy Josh came in from Colorado and my buddy Jess came in from New York (via Paris, via Iraq). We all had dinner together at a Chinese/Sushi place here at the MGM and then hit the poker, blackjack and craps tables. Jess had two other friends come into town and took off with them later in the evening, leaving Josh and I to attack the tables. So far, I’m up at everything, including 2/5 NL, which killed me last time I was here. Josh bought in for the minimum and sat to my left. He kept saying, “You just push these people around!” It was true, but it helped to have good cards. I made one great read, two bad reads and only had one bad suckout. Not a bad day with good friends.

I’m staying at the MGM Signature. This is one of the nicest rooms I’ve ever been in, and that includes the Wynn. Too bad it’s like a mile walk to the poker room – and they are part of the same complex!

Well, it’s time for breakfast. I think I’ve got a comped buffet coming.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Daniel’s Broiler is the Best in Seattle!

9 Apr 08

If you’ll remember, I wrote about an awesome meal I had right before I left for Iraq. Daniel’s Broiler on Lake Union was the one place I wanted to eat in case I never came back. It was that good. The manager, Rich Heely, made it a wonderful experience. Well, Rich has moved on to the Daniel’s Broiler in Bellevue. I made reservations tonight and brought along a special little gift.

For those of you who played in the last WPBT, you may remember a special American Flag. I had that flag flown over the Al Faw Palace in Baghdad to commemorate the winner of the event. In fact, I had three flags flown that day – one for the poker champ, one for my dad, and one for Rich Heely and the staff at Daniel’s Broiler. Tonight, I got my chance to say thanks to Rich for his amazing generosity.

The food was unbelievable as usual. I’m no food critic – I just know what I like. This is the best. We had the lobster tail and filet along with a Napa Cabernet for her and an Argentinean Malbec for me. The bottle of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Champagne surprised us both, but not as much as the invisible check at the end of the meal. We left a generous tip for our outstanding waiter Ken and drove off into the night an incredibly happy and well-fed couple.

If you are ever in Seattle, you must go to Daniel’s Broiler. Tell them Dr. Chako sent you.

Monday, April 07, 2008


8 Apr 08

There was an award ceremony before I left Iraq. It was pretty strange. There was a group of doctors – 8 of us in all – who all came to Iraq together. We were all scheduled to leave on the same day, so the commander gathered us all below the American flag and surrounded us with the entire hospital staff. The Army Commendation Medal was presented to all of us for the outstanding work we did in the combat theater of operations.

Well, all of us except me.

No one said anything right away. There were all kinds of rumors. “Why didn’t Dr. Chako get an award?” “Did he kill someone?” “Did he piss off the commander?”

Actually, the Deputy Commander told me to tell everyone that I didn’t get an award because I was sleeping around, but they just couldn’t figure out with whom. I told people it was because I punched out the chaplain during a poker game.

The real reason I didn’t get an award is because my award took a little longer to process. You see, it needed to be approved by a three-star general prior to being signed by the Secretary of the Army.

Sunday, April 06, 2008


7 Apr 08

Based on a recommendation from Otis about Ecco shoes, I went out to the land of retail in search of said footwear. I found Ecko (as in Mark Ecko) in Famous Footwear, but no Ecco. I was beginning to doubt whether I remembered it correctly.

On venturing into Macy’s, I come up to the knowledgeable shoe lady. She’s older and looks like she knows her stuff.

Dr. Chako: Pardon me. I can’t remember. Is it E-C-K-O or E-C-C-O?

Shoe Lady: Ummm… Echo is E-C-H-O.

Dr. Chako (after a stunned moment of silence): Ummm… Thanks. That clears it up.

Now head on over to The Wife. She just gave out her top secret recipe for the best guacamole you ever had. Seriously.

Dr. Chako Birthday Bash

6 Apr 08

My birthday was a rousing success and a helluva good time. We had a small gathering at Chez Chako with a mix of other docs, accountants and degenerate poker bloggers. The food from Fred Meyer was good as usual, but The Wife’s homemade guacamole once again stole the show. Seriously, there is no better guac on the planet.

I always get nice but usually impractical gifts for my birthday. This year was something special. Dave, one of the Army docs and my sole employee, brought me 18 year old Macallan scotch. Off the charts! He doesn’t drink scotch, but he knows I like it so he went into his local liquor store and said, “Just gimme your best.” Awesome.

The scotch was perfectly timed too, because I was on the dregs of my last bottle of Macallan. I got to polish it off thanks to a well-timed dial-a-shot from none other than Bam Bam! The Wife hands me the phone as says, “This is the most important phone call you will get tonight.” What, is it the President? Even better – it was the contingent from Bedrock and I was blown away. A hoist of the glass toward the Great White North and there were two scotch drinkers who were very happy.

My kids got together with my Au Pair and bought me Planet Earth. I’m very psyched for this show. I saw some of it in Iraq, but I’m really stoked to see it in High Def. Of course, my best birthday present comes next week from The Wife as I board a plane for Adult Disneyworld.

The three blogger degenerates (other than myself and The Wife) were Cayne, Joshua and Zeem. It’s so nice to see an outed couple like Cayne and Joshua. It must have been tough living their lives in the closet for so long.

I have a limited memory of the tournament. I know I didn’t win, but neither did The Wife (neener, neener). She was actually second in chips towards the end, but no one could figure out how. She spent most of the time playing with a baby and socializing. We had to call her back to the table multiple times. It was some sort of cagy accountant strategy, but it worked! At one point, Cayne and I looked at her monster chip stack and neither of us could figure out how it got there.

A monster three-way all-in between me, The Wife and Andrew (another doc) brought it to heads-up. It was 8-8 (Andrew) vs. A-K (The Wife) vs. 3-4 (me), and the eights held up. I think the final battle lasted one or two hands. Congrats to Andrew for taking it down and to Cayne for a solid second (who would never have been there if not for a well-timed fold on that 3-way all-in).

I can’t wait for the next gathering. Hopefully we’ll do it soon, but if not, I’m pretty sure we are all going to Vegas for the June gathering.

Friday, April 04, 2008


4 Apr 08

First off, thanks to Sean and the folks over at Buddy Bank Radio. I had a blast being on your show. Of course, you forced me to download all the Full Tilt software again (I’m pretty sure I erased all of it after dropping a grand over there). We’ll see if I can resist the itch to get back into online poker again.

Now I’ll leave you with the video that goes with the title of this post. I’m pretty sure The Wife is trying to train me to act just like these dogs. At least she gave me flowers as a pre-birthday present.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Vegas Here I Come

Did I mention that I'll be in Vegas next week?

(I dare you to look away)

Perhaps this is not quite safe for work (NQSFW?). There is no nudity, but the subject (pole dancing) is considered a little racy. If you have an open mind, this is art.

Jackie Chan is the Man

In case you had forgotten, here is proof.

Computer Tilt

2 Apr 08

The enemy of good is better. – Anon

So, my computer keeps giving me messages that it’s not protected despite having McAfee Security Center (AOL Version), Zone Alarm (thank you SO much Kim Komando – sarcasm intended), and Windows Firewall. In researching this, it said I had to update the McAfee, but it wouldn’t let me because the Zone Alarm was there. I couldn’t uninstall the Zone Alarm, because I’m not an Administrator (on my own damn home computer) and I have no idea how to change this.

So, being the resourceful doctor I am, I went to the Zone Alarm forum to see if anyone else had this problem. Sure enough, there were dozens of similar complaints. There were detailed instructions of how to uninstall it (which interestingly included re-downloading the program from the site). The special instructions also included erasing a bunch of files and changing the Registry (right now, those of you with computer experience are probably going, “uh oh”).

The upshot of all this is that I can no longer access any http:// site through Internet Explorer 7. I can get https and even ftp, but not http. Of course, if I use AOL to get on the web, I have no problem (which is how I made this post).

Any ideas out there?

Note: Morrie bent my wheel back into alignment and it’s good as new. He’s every bit the character you’d think he is.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Great Job Descriptions

1 Apr 08

First off – happy April Fools Day. Beware of office trolls pulling pranks.

Anyway, my tire sensor light came on, so I knew I was losing pressure somewhere. Sure enough, the left rear tire was low. I took it to my local Les Schwab. As an aside, there are only two businesses I promote regularly –USAA and Les Schwab. They both get my money, but neither makes me feel like I’m being had. Free flat tires fixes, free tire rotation and free tire swaps (winter for summer and visa versa) is one of the smartest marketing ploys I’ve ever seen. It’s the reason I dropped over a grand on new tires there.

So, they get the tire off the car and it’s worse than I thought. The rim is bent and that’s why it’s losing air.

DrC: What’s this gonna cost me?

Les: Oh, we don’t have this wheel. You’ll have to go to the BMW dealer, or…

DrC: Or what?

Les: Well, you could take it to Morie.

DrC: Morie?

Les: Yeah. He works out of his house, but he’s a good guy, and…

DrC: The suspense is killing me. And what?

Les: He likes to bend things.

So my wheel now sits on the floor of Morie’s garage. I picture him staring at it just giddy with anticipation. I’ll let you know how it goes.