Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!
Merry Christmas to all my online poker buddies throughout the world. For those of you not of the Christian persuasion, I hope your holidays are filled with peace and joy. Sorry - I am forced into political correctness at work, but this blog stays a politically correct-free zone.

Christmas. Merry Christmas. Christmas tree. Jesus. Ahhh ... I feel much better.
My Wonderful December Trip Up North
I decided that my family would make a rare trip up north for Christmas. My mother-in-law lives about 450 miles straight north, so normlly this is not a trip we make in December. It is currently a blissful, clear 45 degree day in central Illinois. The forcast for our destination tomorrow: Snow showers, high of 28 degrees, which is the warmest it is supposed to be for the stay. There were already 15 inches of snow on the ground as of yesterday, and snow is forcast for today, Wednesday (our travel day), Friday, and Sunday (our return travel day).

I can't believe that we made this nasty trip many times when our kids were real young. Now, of course, they are old enough to just complain about everything.

The one very nice thing about traveling north, however, is that my mother-in-law lives about 45 minutes from an Indian casino. And, better yet, the St. Croix Casino has poker tournaments scheduled for Thursday and Saturday evenings. They are low buy-in tournaments ($60 Thursday and $125 on Saturday), so who knows what level of skill will be present. This casino does host some of the Heartland Poker Tour events, so I am hoping that the tournaments will be good.
A Quick Review of 2007
2007 brought many changes to my poker life. The downfall of Neteller for USA players was a big pain in the ass, as was the number of poker rooms that shut their doors to USA players -- often with little or no notice, and often with no good way to get our money out. Such is the risk of playing online poker.
Several of my poker groups changed in significant ways:
CheckRayz: The head honcho, Mike (imjusthere4thebeer), disappeared some time after going to the Australia Millions. Mike posted on my blog a few days ago, which is the first I'd heard from him in probably over six months. I guess that this group is now kaput.
Shark Poker Tour: Shark also seemed to take a major trip away from poker in 2007. The tour started back up late in 2007, but is sputtering along.
K-9 Poker Tour: What happened here? It seems like financial issues and some personal battles took away the good feelings vibe from this group. It is still active, but one gets the feeling it has already peaked and is on the downside unless something changes.
OnlinePokerTour: This group dismantled its season-long free and money tours to concentrate on Rounder's Radio tournaments. Sadly, the season-long battles have been replaced by a series of low-level freerolls.
cardschat: This largely England/USA group is going strong. It sponsors regular tournaments and championships and is a model for how to run a good poker organization and forum.
hammershangout : This new group is struggling to get members. It is an offshoot of K-9 and some members are common to both groups.
Poker Bloggers: While not a group but rather a compilation of poker players who blog, this group kicked ass all year long with regular challenging tournaments and a couple of competitions, incluing Battle Of the Blogger Tournamets I & II. The winner of "II" got a trip to Australia for the Australian Millions!
As for 2008 ...
Frankly, I do not know. I will continue my semi-regular trips to Las Vegas, but I find myself tiring of online poker. I will probably be more judicious in choosing which tournaments I enter in 2008.
Good luck in the upcoming year!


Blogger smokkee said...

GL in '08 lightning.

12:05 PM  
Blogger Schaubs said...

I hope you had a great Christmas. All the best in 2008 bud.

10:30 AM  
Blogger MurryTheCat said...

Mr. Lightning. Nice summary, you made alot of good points. I was pulling for you to get that win today, great effort. I hope you sneak in a few more of those games, I know you have to wade through the donks but me need more guys of your caliber when the final table beckons hehe. See you around buddy. MTC

1:53 AM  

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