Monday, February 27, 2006

"Hey Its Free Poker"

I hate bar poker. First off I've played twice now and JDub has finished better than me both times. Part of tonights problem is that I didn't catch any cards, before my last hand my best hand was 88. I only caught an Ace twice the whole night. I love playing cards but the players just hurt me on the inside. Why call a 300 chip bet (you start with 1000) on a runner, runner gut-shot straight draw. I had top two pair :(

My last hand was KK, I'm way short stacked, I go All-In, get two callers. Guy with A/8 catches a straight. Oh well, Vegas is in two weeks.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Spider Sense

My spider sense is tingling and trying to warn me of danger. I've loved the first two and hope for the best with the third one. This isn't what I was hoping for though. I will still be there on opening day though.

You never raise pre-flop

Pretty Bird wanted to learn to play Hold 'Em from someone other than me so we decided to play at the beginner lessons at the Luxor on Saturday. I love the Luxor, one of my favorite places to play, they have consistently the best dealers in Vegas. So we get on the same table, I make sure to put her to my left, and we take the lesson. After the 20 minute lesson you can buy in and play some $1/$2 limit. The table is full and everyone decides to buy in for at least $20. There is a husband and wife and then a mother/mother-in-law on the same table. The husband is apparently 'good', so good that he lost $400+ the night before at the $4/$8 game and wanted to try the lower limits. Then right before cash play starts on the $1/$2 the Luxor starts a $50 sit and go (yes Girard I love sit and go's also) and the husband gives his wife his $40 in chips and heads to the sit and go.

Now I'm not a great player but I'm fairly certain I'm the best play at this table. The first hand I get junk, Pretty Bird gets junk, and we're the only two players to fold, typical for $1/$2. Mom is the button and just called. The flop is 8/8/A. The SB leads out the entire way to the river and the mom calls the entire time. They flip over, the SB has 3/8 and the mom has AJs. Now in a normal low limit game in Vegas the SB probably calls anything. In a learning game people are much more conservative for at least the first 30 minutes or so. I explain to the mom that she probably should have raised pre-flop and then SB wouldn't have seen the hand. SB even chimes in saying he probably would have folded. Wife interupts me, "No you never raise pre-flop". Wha?

TMac - "No, really she should have raised"
Wife - "Nope you never raise, you don't win enough to risk the extra money"
TMac - "Really lady, raising pre-flop is how you win a lot of hands"
Wife - "You don't know what you're talking, you don't even know that Aces are only 30% to win. Trust me, my husband knows how to play poker"

At this point I decide to just let her be, I wasn't going to win my case. Sure 10 handed Aces probably only win 30% of the time, that of course is why you don't play 10 handed very often if you can avoid it. The altercation has really upset wife. Wife plays just about everyhand and is able to catch two pair a couple of times and a few straights. She then points out that she knows what she is doing, see she has a lot of chips. Husband now returns, having gone out first in the sit and go, apparently he thought calling with KJo an early All-In was the way to go. Husband has now lost $450+ in two days playing. I've been to Vegas six times in three years, never lost most than $80 in one session, and never left Vegas down. My basic math has me up in Hold 'Em about $900 in my six poker playing trips. Two of those trips were really good, winning $240 in 90 minutes followed by another $120 that night is good I hear.

Anyways back to the game. I don't catch many cards but I am able to leave about $35 up in the hour it took Pretty Bird to lose her money. Part me wanted to stay longer but we had a concert to get ready for and some dinner to eat. I did have a couple of good hands.

I have 22 in early position, I raise and get two callers, wife and another player. Flop is 2/3/K. I check, wife bets, other player calls, I raise, wife calls, other player folds. Turn is 2, mmm...I like nuts. I check, wife bets, I check-raise again, she calls. Who cares what the river is, it isn't a 3 or a K. I'm able to check-raise her for a third time. I take some chips, win a $20 bonus from the house.

Another hand I have 2/5 in the BB, unraised, flop is A/4/K. It is checked, I check. Turn is like an 8, adding a second diamond. I bet, one person calls. River is a 3, no diamond. The other person flips over her cards, she has 3/4. Now it is a learning game and the dealer does tell her I can still bet but now I have to be nice poker player and just check, I know I have her beat, which of course I knew I did even without seeing her cards but I still must check.

I didn't play but four hours or so this weekend so hopefully I will get much more time on the tables in March.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

A Year Ago Today...

I started my first day here in Charlotte. It really doesn't seem like a whole year has gone by.


Pretty Bird and I went to Vegas for my birthday and what a great trip it was. I'm back for a few days before I leave for New York City, two of my favorite cities in back to back weekends, what luck. I'll write more about Aerosmith, Vegas in general, and the idiot poker players in Vegas later in the week.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Stupid People Tax, Round 2

So nobody won the PowerBall yesterday. We're going down to Atlanta again and South Carolina is a PowerBall state. Yep, that means we must give our $3-$5 donation to the Stupid People Tax. I wouldn't mind 375 million dollars.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

It really is Christmas in February

First Steelers win the Super Bowl, then I get a raise (hey that is big news based on the raise frequency of my last job), then I get a great birthday present, and now this:

Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank continues to pursue a purchase of the Braves. Blank's representatives have had a series of meetings and discussions with Time Warner about the baseball team, the most recent on Tuesday. Blank has been informed of Time Warner's asking price for the team -- believed to be slightly upward of $400 million -- and talks with him are more advanced than with any other prospective purchaser, sources said. He has not agreed to the asking price or yet made a counteroffer. -- Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Teams shouldn't be owned huge corporations. I understand that in most cases one owner doesn't own a team but people like Time Warner, Fox, or Disney shouldn't own teams. They're more worried about bottom line and less about winning. When Ted owned the team they wouldn't let every free agent and his mother skip town. Good stuff :)

Fun Size

A very nice girl in the customer service department has a bowl of candy for anyone to have some. Just what I need in my life, more candy. Anyways they're all the small "bite sized" versions. They wrappers all say Fun Size on them. My wife and I plus have a few friends have always wondered about that. What exactly is "Fun" about less candy?

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Stupid People Tax

We were bad, we contributed $9.00 over the weekend to the Stupid People Tax, also know as the lottery. We just couldn't resist, the jackpot was over 200 million in South Carolina and Georgia, we just had to get some tickets. I'm not sure why you are compelled to play a 200 million lottery more than you are a million dollar lottery. I would love a million dollars, of course 200 million would be better.

It is the Stupid People Tax for two reasons. First the amount of people who spend way much than they can afford to spend on the lottery on a weekly basis. I've seen people buy $300/$400 on the lottery and they obviously couldn't afford to spend $5.00. The other reason it is the Stupid People Tax is because a huge percentage of people, more than 1 idiot, think it is their means of retirement. I'm quoting an article linked I read a good bit ago so the numbers are probably wrong, plus it was on the internet so who knows how acurate it was. Anyways if I remember correctly it was somewhere near 20% of people believe it is their best means of retirement, wtf.

Anyways, I hope we win :)

Patience is a Virtue

We drove down to Atlanta and back this weekend. We also drove from one side of the city to another twice, overall a good bit of driving. I counted 17 vans, SUVs, or other large family type automobiles with DVD/Monitors playing in them. That doesn't count the ones that weren't actually using them. That is just insane.

We're pretty tech savvy, I love buying the newest, coolest gadget, as long as it is close to my budget. Outside of an HDTV or XBox 360 we own just about all of the cool goodies. We have two iPods, a Nintendo DS, a PSP, a PS2, a Gamecube, 3 functioning computers, a TiVo, five DVD players (if you count the computers), and a functioning secure wireless network. Heck we have a Mac and Windows PC in the same house. We plan on getting an HDTV and a Sling Box before too long. Our six year old knows how to use the computer, both of them by herself, she can turn on the TV, work the DS all alone, and with a little help work the Nintendo or PS2. She also enjoys reading, coloring, playing board games, and playing with friends.

Even with all of that though, my wife and I read a lot, we own 30+ board games, and have spent many a night without the TV even on. In the past three years we've driven from Norfolk to Atlanta or Charlotte to Atlanta with the three to six year old at least 10 times.

I refuse to be some bitter old man remembering how it was during my time, I like the time we live in, I love my iPod and this PSP thing is great. To think when I get a Sling Box I can steam a Braves game or BSG to my laptop anywhere in the world when I'm on the road, incredible. I can't imagine what my daughter will be able to do when she is about to turn 30, I'm sure it will make her and my head spin.

Technology is great but does your child really need to be entertained by Sponge Bob on the way to the grocery store? I can barely stand most 14-18 year olds now and they've only had in your face technology for 6+ years of their life. What is your 6 year old going to be like when they're 22 and can't sit still waiting for a job interview. Let them color or heck even look out the window for the 10 minute drive to the store.

Thursday, February 9, 2006

Fantasy Baseball!

As The Girard pointed out it is only a few days until pitchers and catchers report. That means Fantasy Baseball time! I was in two leagues last year, both were crap. So I'm starting my own league this year, at least one. The first one will be standard Roto scoring, 12 teams with a $20 buy in. Top 4 get cash.

First - $120
Second - $60
Third - $40
Fourth - $20

If you want in, let me know.

Wednesday, February 8, 2006

When it rains, it pours

I've been fighting some sort of stomach bug since Saturday, bad enough to make me miss today at work. Now my wife faints while she is out running errands. Man I hope we both feel better soon and don't pass on anything to the child.

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Wisdom of a Six Year Old

"Daddy I think the Steelers should win the Super Bowl everytime"

So do I sweetheart, so do I.

Monday, February 6, 2006

Thanks for the Memories

What a Bus Ride it has been.

13662 Rushing Yards (another 674 in the playoffs), good for fifth on the all-time list.

92 Rushing Touchdowns (another 9 in the playoffs) putting him tied for eigth all-time, tied with Franco Harris. Now that is fitting.

I remember Jerome terrorizing college teams when he was with Notre Dame, including Florida State. I remember watching him as a rookie with the Rams. I remember my brother David and I meeting him at the 1994 NFL Experience in Atlanta, we were in line for Neil O'Donnell. It was still great to talk to him for a few minutes. I remember being at work with another Steelers fan and two Browns fans when we found out the Steelers traded for him. I remember him rushing for over 1600 in 1997, of course his thunder was stolen a little by TD in Denver. Most of all I remember Corners and Safties getting out of this way in the 3rd and 4th quarters. Now I will remember him holding up the Lombardi Trophy.

I will so miss singing "The Wheels on the Bus" with Emily when he scored a touchdown. So will Emily, at least that is what she says.

Thanks Jerome, the Wheels on the Bus do go round and round, all the way to Canton.

Sunday, February 5, 2006

Super Bowl Champions!!

Super Bowl XL Champion Pittsburgh Steelers!

Moment of Truth

With just a few hours until kickoff it is time to make my prediction. I could literally come up with dozens of reasons why either the Steelers or the Seahawks will win the game. Mike Holmgren's record against the Steelers is really good and I remember too many games with a West Coast offense beating the Steelers. I really think that mixed with the Football Gods love of making me get so close but not get any means the Seahawks win. It will be brutal at work but I think that is how it goes.

Seahawks 24, Steelers 13

Here We Go Steelers

...Here We Go!!!!

Seven hours till game time!

Saturday, February 4, 2006

East Coast Bias

There is no such thing as an "East Coast Bias". There might be a New York bias because there is 15+ newspapers, 8+ TV stations, and 9 professional sports teams divided into the 4 major US sports. To think people really don't like Seattle because they're on the west coast is a load of shit. You don't win a playoff game in 20+ years and people don't know how you are and sportswriters don't think you're any good. It wouldn't matter if the team was in Boston or Seattle.

There is however a "Make Us A Lot of Money Bias". People with the power in sports, media, sportswriters, merchandising, tv rights, whatever, they're in this to make money. If a team makes them money then they will get more items made of them, more national TV spots, more coverage. That is the bias, how much money someone can make off the team. The NFL and the people who cover, broadcast, and license them want the Steelers in the Super Bowl only slightly more than they want the Seahawks. They want Tom Brady, or Peyton Manning, they want Steve Smith or Santana Moss, they want a team from Chicago or the high powered Colts. It doesn't matter what coast, it matters how much money the league and its partners can make off the teams.

The two Seahawks fans, one in particular, bitches about the "East Coast Bias" all the time. They've stopped a little over the past two weeks because of my mini-rants against them. I had to hear them for college football, this just in, the Washington Huskies just stunk. It was 162 games of how the Mariners don't get their due, um, they stunk also, signing Adrian Beltre for a ton of money was dumb. Then onto the Seahawks. They don't get their credit, not enough people pick them, everyone thought Carolina would win, we beat the Colts, what more do you want. When you win the NFC and have a 13-3 record, who gives a shit about credit. live in Charlotte of course everyone thinks the Panthers will win. You beat the Colts B-Team, point out you beat Dallas or the Giants or even Michael Vick.

Go back and look at what was said about the Patriots before they beat Shocho's Rams, no credit for them either. That must be the "East Coast Bias" being from Boston and all. Wanna see kudos and coverage flock to a team, let the Raiders or 49ers start winning again. Ask LSU or Auburn or heck even U of Texas before the win if they think there is an "East Coast Bias" because USC didn't get a lick of support or coverage.

It is just a load of crap. It will be even more fun if the Seahawks win, I'll have to get better headphones. Gloating that your team beat my team is fine, that happens, complaining that it is hard to get Seahawks stuff on Monday will be too much.

Come on Ben, make it so I don't have to deal with it.

Friday, February 3, 2006

48 Hours

A TV show, a couple of movies, the amount of time I have to wait until I see if the Steelers win. Should be a great weekend.

Thursday, February 2, 2006


I'm a horrible speller and if you've ever read my blog you know it is usually full of typos. However when I need to write something important to help me get a job or anything else I want, I do know how to write. I take the time to proof it, spell it correctly and eliminate the typos. I learned very early on in life that the horseshit they tell you in school about first impressions not meaning anything is a load of well, horseshit. First impressions are the only impressions.

Someone emailed me to become a volunteer, not really a job but for a 16 year old who wants free TCG product for his favorite game, a pretty big deal. He misspelled about five or six words including my name. Yeah that is a great first impression and I sure want you representing my product to consumers.

I was in the mall and someone had a job application. He was a kid, probably 16 or 17 and wearing a hat, basketball jersey, and ripped jeans. Sure a mall job is junk but you still gotta pretend you want it.


This will be the last non-Steeler related blog post until after the Super Bowl. If you don't like it just deal with it.

Go Steelers!!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2006

Brokeback Mountain

Someone in my life is giving me crap about not wanting to see Brokeback Mountain. They said it was because I didn't want to see a movie about two gay cowboys and I was being homophobic. Now I could go on and on about how I'm not. Someone thinks you call them racist or sexist they immediately go on and list their non-racist or non-sexist feats. It drives me nuts when someone does that so I refuse to do that.

Back to the movie. I have no desire to see the movie for a number of reasons before we get to the crux of the pulicity for the movie. I don't like either of the leads, Heath Ledger in particular. I can probably count on one hand the amount of love story movies I've actually seen in the theater. I don't like love stories. I don't really like westerns either. I know this isn't a traditional western but it is still about two cowboys. So even if it was about a cowboy and his love affair with Elisha Cuthbert I still probably wouldn't want to see it, at least in the theaters. I will admit that it being a love story about two men isn't a selling point.

Like most movies I don't have a huge desire to see, if given the opportunity to see it later I probably will. I have Netflix and HBO and if the wife wants me to watch it with her later I'm sure I will watch it. I have forced her to watch a movie she didn't want to see from time to time.