If you haven't read Part I, what the fuck are you waiting for?
Friday In Vegas.
I awoke with a number of thoughts and burning questions rushing through my head:
1: Man, I'm so lucky Mrs. Dynamite lets me jaunt off to Vegas at will. Being a softy, I lob her a text message: "I miss you." Yeah, Kid Dynamite is whipped. Completely.
2) Why does my calf hurt? Oh yeah - I almost forgot about the Mirage's attempt to tilt us last night: We were dominating the double deck blackjack game late night, and they decided to close the poker room crapper "for cleaning," around 2:30 am... for about THREE hours! We retaliated by dashing off to the sports book head instead, whenever the situation warranted. Since we were drinking heavily, and I have a bladder the size of a baseball, this resulted in frequent trips to the inconvenient bathroom. On one of these junkets, I missed one of the steps by the circle bar, and tweaked my left calf. While it appeared the Mirage may be succeeding in their attempt to take me off my game, and had even managed to inflict a calf injury somehow in a double deck blackjack game, we re-gained the upper hand when our dealer mentioned: "You know, there's a nice bathroom right behind this table in the high limit slots salon."
Big Show and I looked at each other, and dashed to check out this new found oasis. I beat him to the solo-bathroom: a luxe escape, with real linen towels, air freshener, mints and hair products! Jackpot! Suck it Mirage!
where was I... oh yeah.. Friday morning...
3) Where the fuck is Big Show? In all of our trips to Vegas, which now number almost 30 I believe, I don't think Big Show has ever awakened before me. This must be the result of his 3 hour power nap the night before. I knew I'd find him in the Office, and quickly showered and pumped myself up for some Mirage No Limit domination, and hopefully some serious sigmas.
I arrived in the Mirage poker room around noon, and found Big Show sitting in the 1-2NL game which I cannot beat. Danielle, my favorite floor person in all of Vegas, didn't have a 2-5NL seat for me yet, and I ran through the list with her: "10-20 limit?" "It's full." "Omaha eight?" "You're too young," she laughed, and I regaled her with the story of how I tilted the crap out of the game last trip by playing a non-nut hand and nearly caused 3 heart attacks and oxygen tank failures at the table. Since I didn't want to play heads up 40-80 limit hold'em with some resident cock chugger, I decided to destroy the 1-5 stud game while waiting for my 2-5NL seat!
Yeah baby - DYKWTFIA? I will take on any game at any time. This seems like a good time to mention that I've never played more than 10 minutes of stud in my life. Still, that couldn't stop me from crushing the game for $35 (BOO YAH!) in 15 minutes before Danielle called me for the 2-5 NL game.
The 2-5NL game was unspectacular. As usual, I was the dominant force at the table, but, even with my headphones on, I was steadily building into a state of full TILT, on account of Mr. "What's It Look Like?" Normally, being a Beantown original myself, I love people from Boston: the ignorant accents, the passion for the Sawx, etc. This doucheball, however, was driving me fucking crazy by asking "What's it look like?" every time someone bet. I'd say "THIRTY," as I stacked off red chips, and he's still say "WHAT'S IT LOOK LIKE?" What? Did you read a book or see a movie that made you think that was a cool thing to say? It looks like fucking THIRTY - that's why I said "THIRTY" when I bet it, so you wouldn't have to ask me what the fuck it looked like.
There was a multi-sigma Chinese guy to my immediate left, whose only English consisted of: "All in," "No pair," and "first time poker." He'd push all in, win a pot. Then he'd push all in, get called, declare "no pair," and nod as his opponent raked in his chips. Then, he'd reach into his pocket and buy another $400 in chips, and laugh "First time poker!" "Yeah, keep trying," we commiserated, as I begged for the chance to get a piece of the action: The guy was in for 2 grand, and I had none of it so far.
I finally captured some of the sigmas in this hand: Mr. "What's It Look Like" (WILL from here on) opens for $15 in EP. He gets called twice, including a call from a woman who hasn't played a hand yet to my immediate right. I am on the button with QQ and a $650 stack. I make it $60 to go. Chinese Maniac (CM) cold calls $60 from the small blind, and the big blind cold calls also. Now WILL surveys the situation, and calls, as do the two players between him and I. I can immediately put the big blind and the lady to my right on pocket pairs, and WILL has either 99-JJ, AK or AQ. CM can have any two cards. I know full well I'll have no clue where I stand in this pot, and can only hope that I'll be able to gain some insight from my position on the button.
The flop is a beautiful: T-T-T. To the FELT! Everyone checks to me. Ok, I bet $200 into a $300 pot, begging that one of these idiots will call me with their under-full. CM quickly moves all in for $340 total, the BB folds, and now it's on WILL. "Holy crap - this is so sick," he's whining. Jeezus you dipshit - you've clearly watched too much poker on TV. Just because Antonio and Phil Laak say "this is so sick" a lot doesn't mean THIS hand is sick. You have AK and you should throw it in the muck you fucking cockchugger - what do you think I have? DYKWTFIA?!??
He eventually mucks (AK), as do the other two players. I call, and turn my hand over. CM nods, says "no pair" and I drag a nice pot. WILL then pipes up "that woulda got interestin' on the turn - I had haaaaaahhhhts too," as he would have picked up a heart draw. "Congrats - I flopped a full house," I pointed out, and he nodded: "Ohhhh yaaaahhhhh."
Shortly thereafter, CM got up to go get some food, and I didn't want to wait for him to come back - the game was boring, and although I'd love the chance to attack his stack again, I couldn't be sure he'd return, and there was negative EV awaiting us all over the strip. I prodded Big Show out of his 1-2NL slumber, and we went off to fuel up... at.. CHIPOTLE!!!! The Chipotle rebuy! A patented, and highly risky play.
Big Show executed the Guac Freeroll AGAIN, but I settled for a guac-less fajita burrito, and we planned our assault. We decided to head over to Caesar's, where the National Heads Up Poker Championship (NHUPC) was being filmed.
The Caesar's poker room was abuzz, as poker royalty was all over the place. We quickly walked right into Shawna Hyatt, and Gus "The Great Dane" Hansen, as Big Show hypothesized on the lines Gus was feeding to her. Fossilman was eliminated from the tourney, which we couldn't really get close to, and wandered out seeming somewhat annoyed. "Twenty bucks if you tell him a bad beat story," I propped to Big Show, but he only laughed.
Scotty Nguyen took a lot of time to glad-hand with his fans outside the poker room, as did Shannon Elizabeth. I quickly texted MO, who has a collection of blurry, impossible to identify pics of celebrities on his cell phone: "standing next to shannon elizabeth." He replied instantly: "200 bid for cell cam pic of shan e-liz," and Big Show and I laughed hysterically, as Big Show realized, "we could just take a pic of a random person - you can't tell anyway on the cell phone cam!"
After gawking at the poker pros for 20 minutes, we got bored and decided to keep moving up-strip. I called Chops on our way out the door and he explained that he was on his way into Caesar's to pick up some press credentials for the NHUPC. Hmmm... The wheels were turning as Big Show and I agreed it was worth a shot to stick around. We quickly found Chops at the entrance to the poker room. He was with a coworker from RawVegas.TV, and they quickly claimed their passes. The press guy then turned to me, "and you are?" "Kid Dynamite," DYKTWFIA?!?!? I didn't miss a beat - but he simply stared at me. "With WickedChopsPoker," Chops filled in, and just like that, Big Show and I had all access passes too, courtesy of the immortal Chops.
We blazed past the crew of NBC doucheballs, flashing our passes in their mugs, and Chops introduced me to the smartest man in the room, Brian Balsbaugh. Balsbaugh formed a company, Poker Royalty, to act as agents for the poker pros, to help them optimize their bankrolls, fame, and exposure.
I tried to help Chops come up with an idea for a RawVegas Prop Bet that Gavin Smith could win, as Joe Sebok had been kicking his ass. Tug of War? Hot dog eating contest? I eventually settled on belly flop contest, and Chops seemed to like the idea. Hopefully it will come to fruition.
Chops, Vegas mover and shaker that he is, had to go back to "the office," so Big Show and I decided to take a break from the NHUPC scene as they were going on lunch break anyway. I couldn't focus on poker at the moment, with so much buzz in the room, so we decided to instead crush the THREE CARD POKER table right near the sports book and poker room. On the first hand, I refused to play the "pairs plus" sidebet, severely tilting our old school dealer, Billie. After clarifying the rules, I got on board with the pairs plus, and manged to spike 6 straights, and take about 25 units out of the game. Our dealer, Billie, who'd been dealing at Caesar's since 5 years after they opened, also threw us these monstrous Caesar's medallions, which would surely come in handy as intimidating bling later, especially when combined with our NHUPC press passes.
We cruised back inside for the start of the next session of the NHUPC, featuring Scotty Nguyen vs. Phil Gordon, Jamie Gold vs. Jennifer Tilly, Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi vs. John Juanda, and Mike "The Mouth" Matusow vs. Kid Poker Danny Negreanu as the feature match. This really isn't much of a tournament, as rapidly escalating blinds and antes quickly turn it into a push-fest.
As I confidently strode to the set, some uninformed NBC cockchugger put his hand out: "Can I help you?" I thrust my chest out, attempting to intimidate him with my pecs (I'd done some push ups before getting dressed that morning) and giving him a clear view of my all access press pass. "I'm just going up there," DYKWTFIA?!?!! I explained. "Who are you with?" What is this? The Spanish Inquisition?
"WickedChops," I explained patiently, but was somewhat unprepared when he retaliated with:
"What's that?" What? DYKWTFCI? (Do You Know Who The Fuck Chops Is?!?!?!) I thought "I'm with Chops" would open up every door in Vegas - places only the highest of high roller and inside men get to see - but here I was, being cock blocked by some NBC flunkie, even after busting out my "open sesame" pass code.
"It's a website," I explained, being elusive, and taking another step forward, not to be denied.
"Oh, do you need access for your laptop?" Was he trying to trick me?
"No thanks, my map is in my head," a la Sean Connery in The Rock. Kid Dynamite does not need a laptop. He writes a running diary real time in his head.
Thus, we scampered onto the set, and took a spot in the bleachers. It's pretty friggin' boring to watch, as we quickly realized, but were able to share several exciting moments when Negreanu twice went runner-runner to suckout on The Mouth and stay alive, before finally sucumbing to The Mouth. Over at Phil Gordon's table, Phil had Scotty all in, and drawing dead to three outs. Scotty spiked a miracle on the turn, and Phil slumped in his seat, but Phil re-sucked out on the river to slam his own 3 outer, and claim the match. "NICE SUCKOUT," I bellowed over the crowd, hoping to set Phil up for a vicious circling.
We exited the NHUPC set, and there was only one thing left to do: Circle Phil Gordon. This is where I, Kid Dynamite, became a complete pussy and blew the opportunity of a lifetime. I had a black $100 Caesar's chip in my pocket, which was the perfect bait to use for Phil: "Hey Phil - Roshambo for a hunge," I'd say, as I pulled the black chip out of my pocket with my thumb and forefinger around it. He'd look at it, I'd shout "BOO YAH!" and slug him right in his rotator cuff.
Perhaps it was his guido-esque Full Tilt leather jacket that intimated me, or the fact that I was worried I wouldn't be able to reach his shoulder, as he's about 6'9". I was somewhat concerned that he'd decide to pummel me if I ambushed him like this, or, more likely, I just completely pussed out and left shaking my head at my own incompetence - another optimal opportunity blown. I fear I'll regret this non-circling for a long time.
We proceeded over to the Flamingo, for an extended double deck BJ session, which will be recounted in Part III, along with the conclusion of the trip, featuring:
-The only six deck shoe we played all trip: at Harrah's
-Wynn Peach Chip cold decks
-Hollywood preflop action in the Wynn Peach Chip game
-Mirror ceiling heat at the Frontier
-a first class upgrade for the flight home
until next time,