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12/12/2007: everyone gets everything he wants. i wanted a mission, and for my sins, they gave me one.

it wasn't supposed to work out this way, but due to the UIGEA, Full Tilt was forced to give us our tournament winnings and let us buy our own airline tickets. in the past, these trips were idiot-proof; you showed up at the airport and were given a plane ticket; you got on the plane and were given a seat; you arrived at the hotel and were given a room key and on tourney day went down to the lobby and were given a seat card. now? well, now there was me and like my dad used to say, i could ruin an anvil with a hammer. so with all that FTP cash in hand, i bum-rushed the ticket counter, upgrading to 1st class for both me and my girlfriend. heck, i was up for boyfriend of the year! but in a moment of poor decision making, Phil Gordon talked me into roshamboing for my ticket; who the hell throws rock three times in a row?! to make matters worse, Phil not only won my ticket but would get to sit next to my lovely girlfriend for the entire 15 hour flight. thank god he just got married - you know what they say about a man's feet.

so here i was, 8000 miles from Melbourne; über-hotel paid for, Aussie Millions buy-in set, but flightless and short $3200 for another ticket.

as i watched all 6'9" of Phil saunter off with my ticket (and my girlfriend!) i must have looked like Hunter S. Thompson on his way to the Mint 400: wide-eyed, keyed-up, and certainly planning something desperate and wild. if the most depraved sight was a man in the depths of an ether binge, then i must have looked like Satan himself.

real gamblers, the men who will bet on the letters in the plate of the next passing car, those guys play it to the hilt; they don't keep a backup roll; what's in play is what they have to their name. ask Uncle Tilty how many times he went broke before the age of 30. that number is greater than my hat size, i assure you. but me, well i am a degenerate-in-waiting, so i had a little something in reserve: exactly $843. not much. how the hell was i going to parlay this into another ticket? time is of the essence - no way i could take this and play $1/$2 poker for 20 hours. i needed money now. and as i looked down the concourse, the happy smile of Buddha spread across my face. coming towards me were Mike Matusow, Erick Lindgren, Phil Ivey and Mr. Prop himself, Gavin Smith. if i couldn't turn $843 into $3200 off these guys, well then i must have learned absolutely nothing in that boiler room back in NYC. but what prop? i needed something fast and something that played to a natural advantage. let's not calling it cheating - but this was going to get a BBV thread on 2+2.

three of these four guys have some serious addiction issues with golf, we're talking "Paging Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard" issues. what none of them knew is that i played four years of college golf on a scholarship, had gone to Q-school (missed qualifying by three strokes) and was a scratch golfer. but not only that, i liked to consider myself one helluva trick shot player. i once played a national tour champ 18 holes armed only with an empty beer bottle. i beat him by 8 strokes. Amarillo Slim and his broom pool cue ain't got nothing on me.

so, the trick was to make something sound wild, impossible, golf-related, and oh yeah, something i could do. now, you may not have thought about it, but airport terminals make great miniature golf courses. there are all sort of things to play off of and tons of space. and often, security is too busy swabbing down terrorists' shoes to worry about 4 guys playing golf in their airport. since i already wield a pretty good beer bottle (as a golf club...i'm a scotch man otherwise) the goal was to lure the boys into the flight lounge and then subtly make a wager on my skills. plenty of stuff to try out, but nothing looks cooler than chipping and putting. no one thinks about this, but using a beer bottle ain't easy. sure, driving is like playing baseball, but chipping and putting? it's like using salad tongs for brain surgery; precision is tough. but like everything else, practice makes perfect, and i could chip with a beer bottle better than many people can floss their teeth. so there it was: chip five in a row, tee'd off the bar, using the aptly placed Foster's sign for angle and into the beer pitcher on a table better than 20 feet away. i put in my whole $843. only Matusow was smart enough not to bet. this was like shooting fish in a barrel.

you've seen those MasterCard commercials where the tagline is "priceless"? well, the looks on their faces were...except for the little matter of $3372 that i rolled up and stuffed into my pocket! i wanted to soak in the the glory of their defeat, but i had to sprint to the ticket counter...no way was Phil Gordon stretching out those long legs near my girl!

see ya' in the Land Down Under, mate!

Replies: 1 Comment

im hosting my bounty tourney tomorrow night ..details
Sunday Night , 10 pm EST ( 22:00 )
buyin - $20+2, Bounty Knockout tourney
password - thepokergrind

thepokergrind.net said @ 12/15/2007 08:08 PM CST

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