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Old 02-07-2017, 04:17 AM   #426
Spike McAwesome
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

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Brady during halftime.

These two images are what got me through a dreary Monday:

"Belichick's halftime notes":




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Originally Posted by Da_Nit View Post
This kind of reminds me of this time I went to a high end Italian place in Houston called Tony's, for some white truffle pasta.

The crowd there is more the River Oaks oil money type but loaded. I was waiting at valet for my Toyota Corolla, and I asked the valet why he didn't park my car next to the two identical brand new Rolls Royce parked up front. He told me the one guy paid him $100 to park his Rolls up front and the next guy paid him $200 to park his Rolls is in front of the other guy.

I need to get a job parking cars at Tony's. I think took a pic let me see if I can find it.
Not to rant, but this is sort of the reason the community college is struggling here in Vegas. No one wants to go learn a "trade" if the valets on the strip are making crazy tips under the table. It's hard to compete with that incentive.

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Hey Spikey, probably going to order this Norm Macdonald book.

Good reviews and considering you read that Doug Stanhope book might be up your alley. Also it has a lot to with Norm being an unbelievable gambling degen which is a huge plus.

https://www.amazon.com/Based-True-St.../dp/0812993624
Unfortunately, my reading dance card is going to be full until next year. This semester is going to be a beast, I'll have to take two classes this summer and two more next fall. Plus comps are sometime this spring (I think). Otherwise that does seem right up my alley. Actually a buddy of mine would love that. I need to find out when his birthday is.
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Old 02-07-2017, 04:41 AM   #427
Spike McAwesome
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

I actually didn't mean to post that one so soon. Guess I was a little quick on the draw with hitting "Reply". Oh well.

This weekend started off with a night out for me and the wife:



I ran into a co-worker there, which I absolutely detest. I don't add work people to my Facebook page. I don't like to socialize with them outside of working hours. Hell, I refuse to use my personal cell for work-related calls, etc. Fortunately this particular person is nice enough that I wasn't outwardly mean (aside from a gentle "It's after hours, I don't have to pretend to know you"). In any event, this place is a really decent AYCE sushi place, really close to the Strip (in a plaza next to the Palms), and it beats the hell out of the hour-long wait we would have had a Goyemon.

Saturday, I dropped the ball on taking pics. It was the first meeting of that unofficial Drink Dine Donk group. We decided to meet up at the Grand Lux Cafe at the Palazzo. I know, I know. I **** all over Sands properties and/or Sheldon Adelson every chance I get. But I couldn't get a great read off of people as to budget, dietary restrictions, preferences, or anything else. The menu at the Grand Lux is massive, plus I figured it was a good location that we could spread out and play there, Mirage, TI or the Wynn without too much of an issue. Joboo got off work early enough to meet us down there. Four of you 2p2'ers came, but I only got the screen name off of one (Bikeking19). Don't want to blow up anyone else's spots with a real name. After dinner we decided to stay at the Venetian for the cash games, but one of these times I want to run over a tournament. I honestly think it'd be the funniest thing in the world for a bunch of 2p2'ers to run over a nightly donkament and put together stacks of chips like Trooper's friends at PLO.

A couple of the guys broke off for Big O, but three of us hit up 1/2 and got to start at a brand new table. The Super Bowl tourists were out in full force and firing away at the table, and I got to finish the night +$145. From what I could tell, the others were doing well, too, but I haven't gotten final tallies from the others yet.

It looks like we're doing another one of these around the first weekend of March Madness. And I think that will be the general theme - do this during the big tourist events. We'll see how it goes.

As for Super Bowl Sunday, the cats were set:




The wife and I had our jerseys on (I went with my red Brady jersey, she has a blue McCourty). I went 0 for 6 on my prop bets:



But I managed to make about $20 overall on the day. I hit the Patriots -3 to start the game. At halftime, the line was Patriots -6 total 30.5. I figured if the Pats were going to make a comeback, both of those things would hit. Double or nothing time! I parlayed that sucker and honestly forgot about the money until Monday morning. Because let's face it, my mind was elsewhere. There's a lot of things I could say about that game and my emotions during it. Let's just leave it at this - I fully expect to get a noise violation from my HOA sometime soon.

I actually started up another story (it's one I alluded to right at the beginning of this thread - not about Vegas but it was a really interesting/weird time in my life nonetheless). Work and homework have gotten in the way so I'm not sure when I'll be able to post it. Hopefully before the end of the week.
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Old 02-12-2017, 06:30 AM   #428
Spike McAwesome
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Re: June 18ish to 26maybe - A local's vacation

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Work was imploding (11 of the 12 people I worked with quit or were fired, and the temporary replacement boss sent over by the Senior VP was a monster who literally hit me one day).
I alluded to this at the very beginning of the thread, but the more I thought about this, the more it bears re-telling. It's not a Vegas story, but it's the story of a collapse, the most bad-ass thing I've ever said, how it was totally for naught, and the Hollywood outcome.

Shortly after I graduated from college, I took a job at a bank. I was miserable. It was a long-ass 45 minute drive to open the drive-up window at 7am (for the Massachusetts crowd - North Reading to Newburyport). I was promoted to teller supervisor after about two weeks over people who had either been there for five plus years, or people who had degrees in finance. I was unqualified, unprepared, and handled failure poorly. I wanted OUT. On a whim, I decided to email my old boss from my work study job and ask/beg to see if anything was open. Sure enough, a spot was just about to open up and they'd love to have me back. I'd have to interview and formalities formalities, etc. But the job was basically mine. And so in June, 2002, I began my life in the office of undergraduate admissions of my alma mater.

The admissions office was basically divided up into two separate and very unequal parts - the counseling staff and the operations staff. Leading our division was a Senior Vice President. At the top of our office was the Dean. The counseling staff were led by the Senior Associate Director, followed by a couple of Associate Directors, then Assistant Directors, then Counselors at the bottom. On the operations side was the Operations Manager, followed by a handful of data entry/administrative staff, then student workers and alumni volunteers and so on. The counseling staff were the chosen children. The Dean would often invite them to her home for cookouts, fight for their bonuses and promotions, etc. We of the operations staff were left to our own devices. Even when people were being hired for the Associate/Assistant Directors who were dangerously unqualified and we fought against the hire, we were ignored. But that's neither here nor there.

Fast-forward to the summer of 2004.

Our admissions class is a mess. The demographics are way off. The acceptance rate is too high. The matriculation rate is too low. A half-baked idea to push qualified students to start in the spring (rather than fall) has blown up in our face. The Board of Trustees are pissed. The SVP comes down hard on the Dean, essentially telling her to retire or she's fired. The Dean opts to retire. Another Associate Director retires (unrelated, I think). That's when the SVP sends over her personal #2 - Judy - to serve as interim Dean.

Judy came to us from a neighboring school. She had been their Dean of admissions for about 18 months before our SVP essentially stole her away. I forget her exact title when she was hired on, but she was given the position of our interim Dean, along with all the powers associated with the title. And boy oh boy did she like to flex her muscles. She started making asinine rule changes about when we could and couldn't take time off. She ordered me and one of the Associate Directors to put together a project that a) had absolutely no purpose and b) would require both of us to cancel vacations that had already been approved. Once we put this project together, it was never looked at again. Once the applications started in the fall, Judy started making procedure changes that either made no sense, or had been ruled as ineffective by our very experienced staff years ago. Over the winter, I was snowed in (we had a parking ban on the street so I parked at an elementary school down the road assuming they'd be closed the next day - they weren't, and the plows dumped all of the snow from the lot onto my car). I took a bunch of pictures of the car and hosted them on a website I owned (that was basically just an image dumping grounds) to explain why I wasn't able to come in to work that day. Judy decided to go through all of my other directories, including one that said "ADULT NSFW". When I got to work the next day, I was written up and screamed at by both Judy and the SVP for hosting that kind of material on my site. This is the kind of **** I was dealing with.

Fortunately, we hired a new Dean! A charismatic guy, super nice, and wanted to be on the staff's side for everything. Awesome! My dreams are answered. And then, in the summer of 2005... ****. WENT. DOWN.

The operations staff was made up of:

Bobbi (manager) - 30+ years at the school
Lilliana - 15+ years, daughter is attending
Pat - 45+ years, brother and two sons are employees
Sharon - 5 years at the school, alumna
Kim - 10 years
Erika - 10 years
Tracy - 10 years
Kerri - 12 or so years
Marilyn - 20 years
Two others I'm forgetting
And me

Once the summer began, the staff started dropping like flies. It started when the SVP decided to write Lilliana and Pat's jobs out of the budget. Bobbi was so mad she just quit outright. The SVP panicked and put Judy back in charge of the operations staff. Our Senior Associate quit. Sharon switched departments. Then Erika quit. Then Tracy quit. Then Kerri just stopped showing up. Then Marilyn quit. The other two quit. Kim was the last hold-out but she was gone by early October. And one day, it was just Judy and I in the office. Well **** me.

We had a handful of student workers and temps, and I trained them as best I could. But there were a lot, Judy was too inexperienced, and our procedure manuals all had lines like "When X arrives, enter it into the system, then pass it on to Erika". Not the best documentation. The applications were starting to roll in and I had to essentially beg the Dean to get me more staff. Judy was no help at all, and our Dean hated her. But since she was hand-picked by the SVP, the Dean couldn't just get rid of her.

One day, it's chaos in the office. Judy is messing up the filing system and I'm trying to clean it up. I ask her to just leave the files there and I'll take care of it. She snaps at me. She claims she's doing everything right. I grab one of the files she just put away to look it over, and *WHACK*. She hit me. She ****ing hit me. With two students and a temp looking at us. I dropped the file, grabbed my keys, and went home.

First thing the next morning, the Dean calls me into his office and asks what happened. I tell him, and he says that's what he heard from the student workers, too. He's giddy. He's so happy. This is the ammo we need to get Judy out of our office and out of our lives. All I have to do is report her to HR, he'll back me up, and bingo bango we're done. But there was something about this that didn't sit right with me. This wasn't going to launch me to manager. This was going to be a headache, and the SVP would be watching us even closer and bring the fire down around us. I decide for a different course of action. I ask the Dean to call Judy in so we can have a meeting. Judy shows up, pale and sheepish, but still unapologetic. She claims that she was trying to get the file back from me and accidentally bumped me. I put one finger to my lips and just shush her. I then bust out the line....

"I'm not going to HR about this. But I can. And I will. The only reason you still have a job is because I'm allowing it to happen. Don't you ****ing forget that."

I stood up, left the meeting, and went back to work.

I wouldn't say Judy was pleasant to be around after that, but she certainly left me the **** alone. Unfortunately this only lasted about two weeks, as this was right around the time my mom started to deteriorate rapidly so I left work for quite a while. By the time I got back, we had a new operations Manager and Judy was exclusively back with the SVP.

I moved to Vegas in September of 2006. About two years later, I hear from Bobbi that Judy had been fired and the SVP was told to **** off, so she took a lateral move to a school in the midwest somewhere. Apparently the Board of Trustees were on to Judy and started calling around. It turns out the SVP never actually checked any of Judy's references. Judy didn't leave her last job because our SVP stole her away. She was forced out because she did nothing but make mistake after mistake. Same thing with her admissions job before that. And her job before that. She had been run out of every job she'd ever had in higher education. But the best part of all of this is that she - and I swear on everything everyone holds dear to be true - she ended up bagging groceries for a living.

Oh, and now she's dead. I got an email from Bobbi about four years ago, with all of our former co-workers CC'ed, to let us know she had passed away. A couple of people responded with little things like "Oh". Or "That's a shame". I responded with "That's amazing. I always thought demons were immortal." And that's when the floodgates opened. Everyone started responding with "Thanks Spike for saying what we were all thinking! **** that *****!" and the like. It made me very happy.

Two small tangential stories related to this one -

1. At the bank, there were five branches. I was stationed at one (Newburyport), but when I was promoted, I was sent for training at another (Amesbury). The training would take the entire month of February. I was at my admissions job for a few months, when the bank president gives me a call. He said "We found a disturbing file on your computer in Newburyport. It had the username and password of everyone at the branch." I asked how it got there, when it had been created, when it was last accessed, etc. He said he would investigate and get back to me. A few days later, he calls me back and tells me that it was created and accessed in February. I laugh and tell him I had been in Amesbury during that time and that I had no access to that machine for that entire month. He tells me again that he'll investigate and call me back, but never does. So I call him, and all I get is "We don't keep records of who worked at what branch when, so we're just going to drop the matter." Oh good.

2. One of the guys we hired after the exodus was kind of a ****-up. True townie, knows everyone around, and everyone knows him. One day, he leaves the office at lunch and doesn't come back. No one can figure it out, until the cops show up and start asking questions. Apparently, he decided he wanted an engagement ring for his girl, but didn't have the money. So instead, he'd just rob a bank. Seriously. He used his mother's cell phone and called the police saying that he had just seen two guys with shotguns walking around the high school. He then used THE SAME PHONE to call in the same phony report and disguised his voice. So while the cops were all on one side of town looking for mystery guys with shotguns, he went across town in a hoodie and sunglasses and passed them a note saying "I have a gun, give me the money". Unfortunately for him, both the teller and branch manager went to high school with the robber. So did the cop who answered the call at the station. It took about four minutes to figure it out, catch him, and put him under arrest.
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Old 02-12-2017, 10:25 AM   #429
Da_Nit
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Pretty interesting stories. Was Judy a drug addict? You don't go from dean of school, to bagging groceries to dead just like that. It would also explain how she kept getting jobs but was inept at day to day tasks.
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Old 02-12-2017, 02:51 PM   #430
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Link to ADULT NSFW pics?
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Old 02-12-2017, 06:34 PM   #431
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Spike, thanks for organizing the meet up - it was nice to meet folks. I was on your immediate left at the poker table.
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Old 02-13-2017, 04:52 AM   #432
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

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Pretty interesting stories. Was Judy a drug addict? You don't go from dean of school, to bagging groceries to dead just like that. It would also explain how she kept getting jobs but was inept at day to day tasks.
I was able to find her obituary online and it looks like cancer got her. As for when she was alive, I suppose anything is possible. Drugs or booze would certainly explain the **** attitude and constant anger she showed while working.

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Link to ADULT NSFW pics?
I owned two domains in my life - one for a Call of Duty clan and the other was the image dump. Looks like I let both domains lapse and the images are gone. I lost basically all media I had right before I moved to Vegas. There was a massive storm back home and my surge protector failed. Hard drive was a complete loss. All of my music was gone (I had physical copies of about 90% of it), and all of my pictures (lost everything, including some of the great pranks we pulled in that office once Judy left) were wiped out.

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Spike, thanks for organizing the meet up - it was nice to meet folks. I was on your immediate left at the poker table.
Yeah it was great to meet you guys as well. I like the idea of doing these whenever there are major events in town, so March Madness should be the next target. The flip side is for someone to host a home game. That way we're more likely to get everyone at the same table for something like Big O or Stud or whatever wacky ****ing games are being spread elsewhere.

Not too much to report from this weekend, I'm afraid. Every once in a while, my wife likes to pick me up after work and drive me to a mystery restaurant so we can try it out. This time, she picked:



My wife LOOOOOOOOVES conveyor belt restaurants. There are a couple in Tokyo we hit when we were there in 2013, and I completely crushed her in number of plates. I mean, c'mon:

Me


Her


It's like she's not even trying. But at the Chubby Cattle, it's not sushi that's on the menu, it's Mongolian hot pot. Basically the way it works is this: You order a broth base, then you order a protein (or two or seven). They bring out the broth and put it on a heating element, then you cook the protein in the broth. I went with the prime rib:



The conveyor is so you can grab little extras to drop in the pot as well, and there's a huge variety:



Also, there's a sauce bar where you can concoct your own sauces. Overall, it was tasty, it was unique, but I don't know how I feel about eating soggy meat. Next time I go (and I will be back), I'll stick with noodles and basically turn it into ramen.

Friday night I ran the TI 10pm. The crowd was small, only about 20ish. I busted relatively early when I lost two flips in a row, then lost after a remarkably strange call.

Blinds 500/1000
Villain 1: BTN, 10k stack
Villain 2: SB, 25k stack
Hero: BB, 7.5k stack

Folds to Villain 1 who limps. Villain 2 completes the SB. I look down at 53dd. I could theoretically shove here and just get it in and hope I've got like 35%, but I decide to check and figure I'll shove if I catch any part of the flop.

Flop comes: J52 rainbow with one diamond. SB checks, I jam it all in. I think a pair + backdoor flush and straight draws are too strong to check/call, and I can't risk it checking through and move over cards hitting the turn. BTN calls so fast he almost beats me to the pot, so I know I'm crushed. SB folds, and the BTN shows... ATo. I'm kind of amazed that I'm actually ahead. Or at least I was, until the 4 hit the turn and the 3 hit the river, giving him the wheel.

The rest of the weekend was a little dull. Nothing too exciting Saturday - spent the day cleaning, then getting an eye exam (first time in five years), then new glasses and sunglasses. Unfortunately my insurance sucks, so I had to pay for all hardware out of pocket. I suppose it's worth the money - I only take my glasses off to sleep and shower. And yes, that's the entire list. Let your mind run wild. But I'll definitely get my money's worth.

Today was just as dull. More cleaning, a trip to the mall to get the wife a Valentine's Day gift (along with two new Golden Knights t-shirts for myself), grocery shopping, more cleaning, then a handful of episodes of Intervention and Hoarders before typing out this drek.
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Old 02-13-2017, 12:49 PM   #433
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Nice stories. How does that Cattle place price the food, I have not see a restaurant quite like that before?
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Old 02-13-2017, 02:02 PM   #434
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Probably like comparable sushi places. They count the various colored plates. Each color priced differently.
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Old 02-13-2017, 04:22 PM   #435
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

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Probably like comparable sushi places. They count the various colored plates. Each color priced differently.
Correct. For anything on the conveyor, the price was determined by plate color. I think it ranged from $1 to $4 per plate, depending on what it was. Really not too bad. The broth bases (there were a handful to choose from) were in the $4 to $30, depending on what you get. Also, I misspoke in my last post - I got rib eye, not prime rib. The meat was $10 for 6oz. My wife got lamb for $6. The menu is here: https://m.opentable.com/restaurants/...75/main-menu/0
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Old 03-05-2017, 06:50 AM   #436
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

I just read through the post about my mother dying before my dad, and it's far more incoherent than I wanted it to be. There must have been a better way to say all that. Oh well.

I'm not dead! Work has been sort of annoying with a couple of new projects that popped up, a couple of other projects (that I actually wanted) were usurped out from under me, and classes have been kicking my ass. One class is being taught by an econ professor. One student (of ten) has had any econ class in the last ten years, but it's being taught as if we all have a strong econ background. My mid-term is due Friday and I can already tell I'm punting on at least 25% of it.

Let's dive into the last couple of weeks eh?

For Valentine's Day, my wife got our wedding vows printed:



The wedding was sort of a weird couple of days. I forget if I ever talked about it, but I may as well now.

My wife ordered a dress she loved from the internet for the wedding. As is customary in our neighborhood, the package was stolen from the front porch. Bad start. We also ordered custom Chuck Taylors for our wedding shoes, with "Mr. McAwesome" and "Mrs. McAwesome" written on the side. I was kicked out of the house the day before the wedding (as is customary) so I booked a couple of nights at the Plaza downtown. I figured hanging out with a couple of friends for some small-scale degeneracy and possibly titties would be fine. It ended up being me, Joboo, Brad, and Steve. And Joboo left after we grabbed a quick dinner. Me, Brad, and Steve ended up playing 2/4 limit at the Golden Nugget until about 7am. Someone at the table kept trying to buy Steve's Youtube channel from him - Steve was the first to upload one of the now-viral videos from about ten years ago, and it's sitting on around 46 million views. He never monetized it, and figured selling the channel would be just weird.

When I got back to the hotel room, I realized I hadn't quite written my vows yet. At all. I slept for about four hours, then tried writing. I was distracted, however, by the TV. Our wedding night was the same day as the terrorist attacks in Paris that killed 200+ people. That didn't exactly set the mood I wanted.

As for the wedding itself, we went back and forth on whether we should do a ceremony here or in Boston. Or both. After some soul (and wallet) searching, we eventually said "**** it", brought six of our nearest and dearest friends over, and did a quickie ceremony at the El Cortez. Well, not "in" the El Cortez. More out in the little courtyard area in front. Oh, and we didn't tell them we were coming, either. So the video of our wedding has just whatever music was blasting over the PA system plus an ad for their player's club. Security came to kick us out right after we had finished and were taking pictures, but even they didn't know exactly what was going on. They just gave us "If you're doing more than just taking pictures, you'll have to leave". Sorry not sorry, I guess?

Alright, enough sap. Let's get to some poker.

Had a hand during a TI 10pm tournament that set off a pretty long discussion in the chat room. Here's the situation:

First level of the tournament, blinds are 25/50. It's only maybe the 4th hand in with no significant action, so consider all stacks around starting (15k). There are four limpers to my BB, and I check with Q8cc.

Flop Q92 two hearts. I check. MP bets 400, I'm the only caller. Turn is an off-suit A. MP bets 800, I call (pot is now 2600). River is the 8h, so the front-door flush gets there. I lead for 2k.

The chat room is saying I'm better off betting like 1/4 to 1/3 the pot and get a cry/call from a worse Q. That way I maximize value with my two pair, and can fold if he raises a ton. My argument is that I know this tournament too well. No one leads with flush draws, but everyone's terrified of a flush getting there. I'm confident I can get better two pair and even flopped sets to fold that river. Results in the spoiler, below:

Spoiler:


If you've ever played that tournament, you should know the older couple. I don't know their names, but they have matching small-brimmed fedoras and the husband will stand up and shout "Honey I'm all in!". On the final table of this same tournament, I have the husband to my right and the wife is on his right. At 1/2k, she open-jams UTG+1 for 25k. The husband calls with 24k. I have 30k, look down at 99, and now I'm in a spot. For anyone else, I call. But for these two... eh. She's never shoving like that without a monster pair or MAYBE AK. He could be doing this blind, or with a pair, or two Broadway cards... I just don't know. I look at the rest of the table and see a 110k stack behind me, and fold. Everyone else folds as well. She has TT, he said he was in blind and had 42o. The TT holds.

I kinda get the feeling that they'll get accused of collusion sooner or later if they keep that up. But for now, everyone knows them and they seem relatively well-liked. That probably won't go over well at another room.

Ended up chopping 3 ways for $489 each. Not bad.

I played a couple of cash sessions as well during this time. Won $50 at Harrah's one night. No real hands to speak of, except I went from wide awake to "holy **** I'm so tired I probably shouldn't drive" in about 0.0004 seconds. Not sure where my energy went, but I racked up pretty quickly after that. I also played at the Luxor one night because why not. I expected it to be packed with locals and nits, and for the most part I was right. But then, the drunk came. The guy that couldn't wait to give away his money. The guy that was too drunk to say "All in" or push his chips over in one motion, but no one corrected him because we all wanted some of his stack. I thought I had the perfect chance, too, before this hand happened:

Villain 1: SB $161 stack. Drunk as **** and looking to splash money around.
Villain 2: BTN $160 stack. Just moved from the other table so I have no read on him at all.
Hero: UTG $160 stack.

I raise to $12 pre with A8o. It's not a hand I normally ever open with, but I had been playing super tight all night and wanted to see what some of the new players would do, plus I thought I had an outside chance of isolating the drunk. The villains call, everyone else folds.

Flop: A87r. SB checks. I check. BTN says "Aw these guys ain't got ****" and bets $20. We both call. Turn is a 2 and the board is now a complete rainbow. SB checks, I bet $40. Both villains call. River is a 4. SB checks, I jam all in. BTN thinks about it for a long time and eventually calls. SB shrugs and calls. I roll over two pair, BTN shows AJ and mucks. Drunk looks at his hand, looks at the board, looks back at his hand, mutters something that kind of sounds like "I don't know what..." and rolls over 53o for runner runner wheel. Unfortunately I only brought the one bullet with me so I couldn't re-buy, but man what a game.

Some random **** from the past couple of weeks.

The cats are getting better about hanging out together:


I just liked this shot of the High Roller:


My wife has been cooking with a lot of spaghetti squash. I don't know of a better way to get them open:


My daily grind if I'm not playing poker:


We're right around the corner from this:


Which is an Asian (mostly Korean) grocery store. The food court in front is incredible and vastly underrated. Definitely worth a try.

I wasn't sure if these would be Korean Oreos or Korean Hydrox. They were more like thin Oreos:


It's like being a kid again:


Got it for the $60 retail price through Amazon. Really glad I picked it up, but holy **** it needs 40x longer cords, or just go wireless.

I had to go to the UNLV Alumni building for something. I don't know why this bugged me so much, but it really did:


This past weekend, Brad talked me in to driving to Phoenix to catch a spring training game. It's not something I had ever thought to do before, but I'll definitely do it again, even with the trip being less than stellar.

The plan was for me to leave Thursday night after class. I met the wife for a quick dinner (really quick side note: If anyone watches Bar Rescue, one of the experts on there - Vic Vegas - opened a sub shop across from UNLV called 7 Sinful Subs, and it's incredible), then hit the road driving her car. Hers is nicer, plus she wanted to use my UNLV student parking sticker for a couple of days while she attended a deposition training course for a few days. It's about a 4.5 to 5 hour drive, plus you lose an hour in a time change, which put my estimated arrival time around 1am. Not ideal.

Sometimes, the "highway" becomes Main Street in a town of like 200 people, so the 75mph speed limit is dropped to 25. Other times, the road shrinks down to one lane in either direction. Every time this happened, I was behind an 18-wheeler, and almost never had a chance to use the sparse passing areas. Bleh. All in all, I made pretty good time and made it to the Ramada downtown right on schedule. This is where things get weird.

The Ramada only has a small parking lot in front of the building - maybe 20 spots if people are up on the sidewalks. But they have a parking garage around the corner. Four stories high and I can park anywhere. Great. I quickly find out that the walk is about 10x longer than anticipated, as there's an entire other hotel between the Ramada and the garage. I pull in and figure I'll go to my usual spot - the roof. For some reason, I always park on the roof of a parking garage. Just something I've always done. I find the ramp, go up to the second floor, circle around, go up to the third... and then I feel like I'm going to die. There are zero lights, it's completely empty, and I can't see anything. I get a shiver down my spine like a demon just entered the car with me, and quickly back down to the second floor. I see Brad's car so I park nearby and walk towards the door. The push bar has been ripped off, and in pen, someone wrote "Door Broke. Use other" with no arrow or directional guidance at all. At this point, I went back to the car and took all the loose change out of my wife's car and out of sight of potential robbers. I find an exit, then realize I have to drag my bags back to the hotel. Yuck.

The good news is that the ballpark is beautiful. At least, it's better than the park the Las Vegas 51s play at now. That shouldn't be too hard to beat, however. The Dodgers pulled their AAA franchise to Albuquerque because the park was so bad. We went to see the DBacks and Dodgers at Salt River fields, for anyone who's been.





After the game, I drove to Fort McDowell casino for their Friday night tournament. If this tournament were held in Vegas, it'd be the best sub-$100 tournament in town by far.


$60 buy-in ($12 rake) for $10k chips, plus a $10 dealer add-on for 5k more. It got 83 people with $1000 for first. There were a couple of interesting hands of note, plus a discussion that I had never thought about before...

With blinds at 50/100, here's the situation:

I'm in MP (16k stack) with KTdd and raise to 300 basically out of boredom because I hadn't played a hand nearly all night. Three players call, then the button calls (19k stack, old timer, seems terrible at poker). Flop is T73ddx. I lead for 900, one other MP calls, BTN calls. Turn is 2d. I check intending to check/raise (or check/shove depending on the size of the bet), but it checks through. River is another 3. I bet 2k, other MP folds, button calls triumphantly and shows 32 for runner-runner boat. I guess checking the turn saved me from losing my entire stack, but... ugh.

With blinds at 300/600, I'm down to about 12k. I'm in CO, it folds around to me and I raise to 1500 with T9cc. Another table had just broken, so the player on the button was brand new and I had zero read on him. As it turns out, he's a dealer in that room, playing the tournament on his night off. He calls, everyone else folds. Flop is J62ccs. I check, he checks. Turn is 9s, bringing a second flush draw on board. I bet 2k. He raises to 5600. I announce all in, and he practically beats me into the pot and shows J6o. I call for another 9 or a club, and I spike a 9 on the river. I honestly thought this dude was going to flip the table over in anger. Oops.

The discussion came up around this hand. I'm curious to see what the consensus is, or if there's an actual "right" or "wrong" answer:

Board is KKT74r. Player flips over his hand, KT, and says it's the nuts. Someone says "No, quad kings would be the nuts". Someone else says "He has a king, so no one can have quads. His hand is the nuts". So are "the nuts" defined as a) the absolute best possible hand that can be made, or b) a hand that can't be beat, given current player holdings?

I eventually bust in about 25th place when AA lost to KQ all in pre. Just one of those nights, I guess.

I thought of another non-Vegas story I planned on typing up, plus Brad told me one I hadn't heard before, but I'm already exhausted so it'll have to wait. I don't know if it's interesting or what, but I need to do something.
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Old 03-05-2017, 01:07 PM   #437
Alternate Identity
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Thanks for some great reading material.

I would say the nuts is the best hand given the board and what people are holding. On that board, the guy had the nuts.

Your story reminded me of my own wedding. I had an easy time with my vows as I stole parts from two TV shows, but the spouse knew where my vows came from and was fine with it.

Last edited by Alternate Identity; 03-05-2017 at 01:22 PM.
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Old 03-05-2017, 07:32 PM   #438
dingusmcphee
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Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

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Originally Posted by Alternate Identity View Post
Your story reminded me of my own wedding. I had an easy time with my vows as I stole parts from two TV shows, but the spouse knew where my vows came from and was fine with it.

"Cops" and "To Catch A Predator "?

Sorry, couldn't resist.

Ps. The "actual" nuts are the best possible with the current board and holdings. The "possible" nuts that the OMC crowd comments on endlessly, are the monsters under the bed lurking behind any paired or monotone connected board.
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Old 03-05-2017, 08:21 PM   #439
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Yup, b).

Absolute nuts is meaningless knowledge. But when you have nuts in hand you don't have fret about getting raised.
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Old 03-06-2017, 04:53 AM   #440
Spike McAwesome
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

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Originally Posted by Alternate Identity View Post
I would say the nuts is the best hand given the board and what people are holding. On that board, the guy had the nuts.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dingusmcphee View Post
Ps. The "actual" nuts are the best possible with the current board and holdings. The "possible" nuts that the OMC crowd comments on endlessly, are the monsters under the bed lurking behind any paired or monotone connected board.
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Originally Posted by pig4bill View Post
Yup, b).
To quote my wife's alma mater's fight song:

Quote:
Fight, Fight, Inner Light!
Kill, Quakers, Kill!
Knock 'em Down, Beat 'em Senseless!
Do It til We Reach Consensus!
I got to Phoenix about 1:30am Friday morning. Brad called me and asked if I was at the hotel. He was on his way back from a karaoke bar. At least, he thought he was. He was very drunk and very lost, but figured downtown Phoenix late at night wouldn't be an issue... He muttered something incoherent about when and where to meet in the morning, and that was that.

I caught up with him around noon at some sports bar in Scottsdale not too far from the stadium (Zipp's, if anyone knows it). I asked him how long it took him to find his way home last night, and he had no idea. I laughed and told him he sounded super drunk on the phone, and he said "****, I called you?" I really want to check his call and text history from last night, but I don't get the chance.

Then he says, "I don't think I ever told you about the time Steve and I went to San Diego." I asked if that was the time he lost his belt, and he said no. That was Arizona. The San Diego trip was something different. Maybe not quite as "What the actual ****?", but still amusing for those who get to hear these stories and not actually live them. Once again, I'll be retelling this story from the third person. Apologies if I mess up any timeline or location specifics.

Brad and Steve hit up a Padres game. After a bit of pre-gaming, they discover that the bar behind their seats is a) a full bar, and b) overpouring. They're double-fisting Jack and Cokes throughout the game and get ****ing LIT. I mean rare form-hammered. The game ends and they scurry off to an Applebee's to keep the drunk train rolling.

So they're at the bar, putting down beers and being general drunks when Brad wanders off to go to the bathroom. He exits the bathroom, sits down at a booth, and falls asleep. Oh, did I mention a family of four were sitting in the booth attempting to enjoy a nice, quiet meal after the game? Yeah... minor detail. This was obviously enough to warrant getting booted. They make it to the hotel without incident and pass out.

Steve realizes the next morning that he lost his camera. They head back to the Applebee's to ask if they have the camera (or if, in fact, they had been there the night before). Before they can say anything, the manager sees them and says "Oh no, these ****ing guys again." Brad says "I guess we're in the right place. Do you have our camera?" The manager says he does have a camera in lost and found, but he wants to look through it to see if it's really theirs.

First picture, Brad and Steve taking a selfie.
Second picture, Brad and Steve taking a selfie and flipping the bird.
Third picture, one of their asses. I forget which one it was and I'm frankly not about to text either one of them to ask for clarification. Live with the mystery.

The manager gives them the stink-eye and hands the camera over. They left without saying another word.

Now that I've typed all that up, I'm really starting to make Brad sound like an alcoholic. And the stories aren't hyperbolic. I've either witnessed all of this or he told it to me directly. I'll let you know if I ever get my chance to be on reality TV for a second time - "Intervention"!

Good news! One of our friends whose alias I forget is coming to town this week. Hopefully something interesting will happen.

I decided on a whim to run the 4pm $65 buy-in at the Rio today. I wanted to see just how clownish it was, and figured the guarantee almost makes it worth while. It's amazing that the site of the WSOP can run such ****ing terrible daily tournaments for Vegas locals. The buy-in gets you 10k in chips, but blinds start at 100/200 and there are no 25's on the table. I managed to chip up a little, then this happened in the second level:

Villain: UTG. Hasn't been too active, also seems timid and could be his first time playing live. Stack of 8200.
Hero: MP. Played a few hands and chipped up to about 15k. Just won a nice 5k pot by betting on the river with AK on a T high board, only to get called by AJ and win.

Blinds are at 200/400. UTG raises to 1200, and it's his first time raising pre. I see two red queens and make it 3k to go. UTG calls.

Flop comes Q62r. I've got top set and figure I'm getting all his chips unless something weird happens. UTG bets 2500 leaving himself 2700 behind. I figure this is definitely AA or KK and I just coolered the **** out him. He's never folding, so I go ahead and jam. He calls triumphantly and rolls over QJo. The 4 on the turn leaves him drawing dead and I scoop a big pot.

Unfortunately my stack never grew again. Lost a bunch when a drunk moron went all in for like 5bb, I re-shoved over the top with 99, and he rolls over AA. Dammit. I lost again on a really weird hand where I never slowed down to think about what my opponent was doing until the river, and by that point I had punted away 1/3 of my stack with top pair mediocre kicker, then finally shoved 10bb with KJ and lost to AT all in pre. Of 12 total runners, I finished 6th. I should flog myself for that.
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Old 03-06-2017, 08:09 AM   #441
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

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He was very drunk and very lost, but figured downtown Phoenix late at night wouldn't be an issue...
Actually downtown Phoenix late at night is ghetto-gang-cartel territory.
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Old 03-06-2017, 09:51 AM   #442
JBmadera
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Great stories! Thank you.
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Old 03-06-2017, 07:46 PM   #443
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

It's allowed to have two different definitions. To the guy with no king, the nuts is quad kings. To the guy with one king, the nuts is a boat. After the hand, all is revealed.

It's kind of like counting outs. Let's say you have KK, now many Kings are left in the deck? two. Let's say you have AA, how many kings are left? Four. How can there be simultaneously 2 and 4 kings left? Depends on your perspective. Nuts depends on your perspective. If you are on the rail and only can see the board, then the nuts is going to be obviously the maximum hand possible.
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Old 03-06-2017, 08:35 PM   #444
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Yeah, but the guy with no king is wrong. He only THINKS he knows what the nuts is. The other guy KNOWS what the nuts is.
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Old 03-06-2017, 08:38 PM   #445
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Asymmetric information. Exploit!
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Old 03-10-2017, 01:13 PM   #446
Spike McAwesome
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

I kinda ****ed up last night.

My buddy is back in town. I'm too lazy to back through this thread to see if I've already given him an alias, so let's call him Cosmo. Cosmo moved to Vegas with Steve in early 2007. He eventually met a girl and got hitched, and his new bride hated living in Vegas, so they're in Ohio somewhere.

Anyway, he loooooooooooves South Point. He talked me and Joboo into playing the 7pm tournament there last night. Both of them busted early but I eventually made the money. Top 3 paid with $1440 in the prize pool. We battle a little bit and someone suggests a chop. I look and realize we can chop for better than second place money, and just agree. The other two say okay, and we get an even chop. With bounties added in, I'm about to profit $400. Once the floor comes over, I start counting out my stack...

... and that's when I realized my mistake. There were 140,000 chips in play. I had 90,000. And I didn't even think to ask for any kind of ICM/chip chop. Definitely could have gotten myself an extra hundred bucks or so.

Yuck.
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Old 03-10-2017, 02:36 PM   #447
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

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Originally Posted by pig4bill View Post
Actually downtown Phoenix late at night is ghetto-gang-cartel territory.
Actually, downtown Phoenix now includes the ASU downtown campus, plenty of bars, restaurants, nightclubs, etc. Not nearly as scary as it was before the D'bax and Suns moved downtown. 40 year resident of the Valley of the Sun (minus that one year in the Old Pueblo). 10 years ago, if you would have told me I was going out to 2nd Ave and Van Buren to see a band, eat a meal and go out drinking, I would have told you "no way". But that's my plan tonight, and tomorrow night, for that matter.
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Old 03-10-2017, 03:12 PM   #448
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

I was there just a few years ago. I had played at CAZ until about midnight then went looking for food. That I ended up way down there tells you how scarce an open restaurant in Phoenix at midnight is. Anyway, it was like a bad B movie, zombie-like. Absolutely nobody on the streets and only occasionally another car driving by. I figured it was the same as it always was and everyone was bunkered up at home. It wasn't all the way out at 2nd Ave though, more like 24th St.
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Old 03-10-2017, 04:32 PM   #449
Stu Ungar
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spike McAwesome View Post
I kinda ****ed up last night.

My buddy is back in town. I'm too lazy to back through this thread to see if I've already given him an alias, so let's call him Cosmo. Cosmo moved to Vegas with Steve in early 2007. He eventually met a girl and got hitched, and his new bride hated living in Vegas, so they're in Ohio somewhere.

Anyway, he loooooooooooves South Point. He talked me and Joboo into playing the 7pm tournament there last night. Both of them busted early but I eventually made the money. Top 3 paid with $1440 in the prize pool. We battle a little bit and someone suggests a chop. I look and realize we can chop for better than second place money, and just agree. The other two say okay, and we get an even chop. With bounties added in, I'm about to profit $400. Once the floor comes over, I start counting out my stack...

... and that's when I realized my mistake. There were 140,000 chips in play. I had 90,000. And I didn't even think to ask for any kind of ICM/chip chop. Definitely could have gotten myself an extra hundred bucks or so.

Yuck.
In those situations where I have the majority of chips, but am open to a chop, often I'll agree if the others give me $10-$20 each.

They almost always agree to it, as it only cost them $10-$20 each, but to me it is an extra $50-$100.

Of course this is only for small donkaments when the blinds are huge compared to the chips in play, and often all it takes is one all-in hand to lose the chip lead..
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Old 03-10-2017, 05:20 PM   #450
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Re: Vegas stories by Spike (ongoing TR)

Don't want to derail this into a thread about late-night dining in Phoenix (cliffs: there isn't any). Finding an open restaurant that isn't Denny's at midnight is tough, but that's a long way from 'gang-banger cartel zombie wasteland'

Kitchen's are rarely open past midnight, but I can think of a few places I'd go at 11:30 expecting to be fed. 2am? Denny's or the drive thru, buddy.

You drove thru Scottsdale (and past Tempe) to get to 24th St in Phoenix. If you can deal with 20-something hipsters, you can find stuff there at midnight. CAZ (Talking Stick, if you are talking poker) probably was your best bet.

I don't any place outside of Vegas (24/7!) that has decent options at midnight.
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