Sunday, December 31, 2006

2006 Year in Review (November and December)

31 DEC 06


Ah, politics. I never started out to be a political blogger, but I’ve also never been one to hold inside what needs to be said. John Kerry pissed me off. It later turned out that I really think he botched a joke (as opposed to calling me a idiot for not being smart enough to stay out of Iraq), but it lead to a pretty good post.

Sometimes, I think of something and I can’t let it go (no pun intended). Finally, I decided to write it down thinking, “Surely, no one else has the problem of when to pee while playing poker?” Boy was I wrong.

I love poetry and wit, but only when they are brief. If I have to work too hard to translate the words, I get bored and miss meaning. That’s why I love The Onion for its wit, and why I loved this short poem by Samuel Menasche. It has such profound meaning in such a short space.

Scribe out of work
At a loss for words
Not his to begin with,
The man life passed by
Stands at the window
Biding his time

I stayed a little political in November (it was hard not to with the election results), and then taught you all how to tell The Perfect Bad Beat Story. How come you haven’t learned?

I also started to get paid for blogging this month by signing up with Review Me. In a never-before-seen comment, I give you, right here and right now, my review of Review Me:

The folks at Review Me are criminals and sham artists. They will never get another review from me. They were sending my money to the wrong PayPal address. Here is the entire email they sent me when I asked about it:


Very sorry, but we are unable to reinitiate past payments.


ReviewMe Support

I finished the month by once again apologizing to my wife. At least I got the Vegas trip approved, right? Too bad it nearly cost me my marriage. Okay, that’s overstating it a bit, but trust me – it was ugly and it was my fault.


December brought World Poker Blogger Tour (WPBT), and Trip Reports One, Two and Three. What an awesome experience. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that thoughts of this trip will carry me through my impending deployment to Iraq. Thanks again for the memories and stories.

As I approaced the end of the month and the end of 2006, I decided to let you all share in my Midlife Crisis. Folks, I am really struggling with this, but it’s been cathartic to share it with you. There is no end in site, but the revelations are coming fast and furious.

First – here is the Wikipedia description of a Midlife Crisis (don’t you just love the Wiki?)

My favorite part?

Acquiring of unusual or expensive items such as clothing, muscle cars, jewelry, gadgets, etc.

And so, we are down to this. 2006 was an incredible year. 2007 will be interesting, even though I will spend a significant portion of it in the desert. I know that going to war and going to prison are very different, but that’s how I’m approaching this. I’ve never been to prison, but if I was sentenced, I think I would mentally prepare myself for the dead time and focus on the end. In this case, the end may be in doubt. I’m told it’s “just 6 months,” but the Army is notorious for changing things at the last minute. Think about it for a minute. What would you rather have?

Option 1: You are told you are deploying for a year, but you get to come back at 11 months.
Option 2: You are told you are deploying for 6 months, but you get extended to 7 months.

On the surface, Option 2 is 4 months shorter, but can you see how much more difficult it is mentally?

I will end this year on two notes – one political and one personal.

First off I give you my thoughts on Iraq. Saddam is dead.

Saddam Hussein execution. Warning! This video shows to the end. It’s crappy, but it’s important.

I’m a little conflicted here. I personally want him dead. I’m glad he’s dead. He deserved to die. I’m just a little worried that things will get worse in the short term – like, just when I’m boarding the plane to head East.

Lastly, it’s time for a little revelation.

I first heard about this concept on a couple of old posts from Iggy and Wil Wheaton. The question we need to ask ourselves as poker players is this:

Why do we play poker?

Folks, I am stuck over $15,000. Now, I am very fortunate that this will not affect the way I live my life. I can absorb this loss and move on. But, what have I gotten for my 15 large?

I had one helluva time playing cards. My heart beat like crazy. I got some great stories and met some interesting people at the casino.

I met you all through poker. Surely, no value can be placed on that. I never would have known about the WPBT if it wasn’t for poker and blogging, and that would be a shame.

But, at the end of the day, why do I play poker? My big revelation is this: Poker has been an ego thing for me. I got so much pleasure when I was winning that I lost site of the big picture, and it affected my game. Poker, at least limit poker, is a grind. I needed the action and played too many hands. By putting myself in too many drawing situations, and not having the bankroll to sustain when the odds don’t come my way, I decimated my bankroll. I now have two options – rebuild the bankroll, or take a break from regular poker.

Guess which one I’m headed towards?

I know my wife and family will be happy. I spend too much time away. I have decided to limit my poker to home games, Vegas and freerolls (unless Stefan comes into town – then I’ll be forced to hit the Muckleshoot once again).

So the big answer and the big revelation is this. Why do I play poker?

For the wrong reasons.

It’s time to fix that.

Starting right now.


Ignatious said...

excellent post, doc. here's to a safe and +ev 2007!

Anonymous said...

Ignatious sounds like a smart guy . . . this was one of your better posts . . . even with the recap.

Love you in 2007 more than I did last year.

Unknown said...

Play for fun.

Play for money.

Never play for ego (read bankroll busto posts on 2+2 about kids who play because "I'm better then you").

Good luck Doc.

whiskeytown said...

hey, I met the wife unit - she was cute -

positive EV play - will send prayers and flak jackets forthwith