Just when I’m close to my wit’s end, wondering why the hell I’m alone in this godforsaken town hunched over two pieces of laminated plastic, fondling filthy pieces of clay for twelve hours a day with nothing to show for my efforts, something like today happens.
I wasn’t even going to enter the $150o Shorthanded NLHE World Series event, but my friend Kevin talked (actually, texted) me into it. I need to thank him for that. It turned into an exciting, marathon whirlwind tournament for me, and when play finally broke for the night, there were 62 players left in the field, with me sitting somewhere around 10th place with 96,000 chips. Play resumes tomorrow at 2:00 PST. I might earn only a couple of thousand dollars, and I might make well over $400,000 and win the bracelet. Who knows? It’s beside the point.
The point is that today got me really excited about poker again. It was exhilirating. Tournament poker, when played over an extended period, leaves the realm of mechanical “do’s and don’ts” and enters a different zone where it can be honestly described as an art form. Today I entered that zone, and it felt very good to be back.
I harbor no illusions about my play. I’m painfully aware of the fact that I’m not one of the world’s elite players. But I am a very good poker player, and one who can take apart exploitable players over the course of a long day’s play. And that’s exactly what happened at the Rio today. There is too much to explain about all the unique situations I found myself in today; I’m too tired to get through it all right now. It was a great day.
I’ve loved poker since I was a little kid, but it’s been a long time since poker loved me back. The flame is rekindled.