Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Hotel Tony Bigcharles: You Can Check Out Any Time You Like, But You Can Never Leave


The other day I happened to look at a post I wrote in December 2014 -- almost five years ago. At that particular time, I had become frustrated being the assumed head (or Grand Exalted Poobah, as I liked to call myself) of the Tony Bigcharles Inner Circle, a small group of friends that Tony had to complain to, share ideas with, etc.
My post was titled "On Leaving Walden" and quoted Thoreau:

I left the woods for as good a reason as I went there. Perhaps it seemed to me that I had several more lives to live, and could not spare any more time for that one. It is remarkable how easily and insensibly we fall into a particular route, and make a beaten track for ourselves. I had not lived there a week before my feet wore a path from my door to the pond-side; and though it is five or six years since I trod it, it is still quite distinct. It is true, I fear, that others may have fallen into it, and so helped to keep it open. The surface of the earth is soft and impressible by the feet of men; and so with the paths which the mind travels. How worn and dusty, then, must be the highways of the world, how deep the ruts of tradition and conformity! I did not wish to take a cabin passage, but rather to go before the mast and on the deck of the world, for there I could best see the moonlight amid the mountains. I do not wish to go below now.

I had just returned for a trip to Las Vegas and had, actually, one of my all-time favorite trips. I spent time playing poker and hanging out with two of my poker buddies -- Rob and Nick. I won a lot at poker that particular trip (except at, of all places, Bally's!), and had fun doing some other things like participating in the old WPBT (World Poker Bloggers Tournament) and playing Cards Against Humanity with Rob, Nick, Alysia Chang, Rob's old poker friend "Prudence," and via computer for part of the game, Poker Grump. I had hung out with TBC for a bit, but he was being a dick this particular visit and my frustrations with him were at an all-time high. After I got back home, I thought it was time to give up the leadership of the TBC Inner Circle.

I first met TBC in February 2012.  As I recall, I somehow assumed Inner Circle leadership after it was abandoned by poker friend grrouchie. Very Josie had been kind of the interim leader for a time, but she felt like she needed to back away and reclaim some of her life. That was also my intention as 2014 came to an end.

It is funny how time flies. In the almost five years after I decided to back away from the day-to-day life of TBC, I find that I am still connected to him. We don't communicate as frequently as we used to, but I believe and I hope that he still considers me one of the friends that he can depend upon. I sometimes hear from him when he is stressing out or has some big decision to make, or is scared that someone is going to kill him and steal the sockroll. He knows that I am honest with him, and hey -- friends sometimes get upset with each other but still stay friends.

One of the big benefits from being part of the TBC story is the many, many TBC followers whom I've met over the years. I can truly say that almost all of them have been good people who, at one time or another, attempted to help out Tony. Sometimes they get a little frustrated at the progress, which I have sometimes compared to drilling through rock with water - one drip at a time. But their good intentions were there.

This coming February will mark eight years since I first met TBC and became involved in the circus. I must say that the ongoing TBC story provided some light to me on some of the dark, crappy days of my life. Like a lonnnnng book that takes seemingly forever to read, there is always another chapter to try to sneak in before you call it a day. The sockroll lives on!

Thanks for reading!



10 Comments:

Blogger Cokeboy99 said...

That trip you referred to was one of my favorites as well. My longest trip in terms of time spent there, and just a lot of good time with friends. I miss those days.

8:51 PM  
Blogger Ace said...

I wonder what Tony would write about a day in his life where he only did fun things not related to casinos.

9:04 PM  
Blogger VegasDegen said...

Ace, you must not be familiar with him, TBC would have nothing to write about outside of casinos

10:55 PM  
Blogger Pete P. Peters said...

Here's what's depressing about this: while you've backed away, Tony has spent every day of those past 5 years in a casino (save for his brief period in jail), measuring his life by how high or how low is "roll" is, even though, no matter the state of his roll, it has no impact on his life, aside from the level of craptastic the motel, trailer (or occasional apartment) he sleeps in. And, this will be Tony's life until the day he dies... I use to find Tony entertaining; now it just makes me sad.

7:25 AM  
Blogger jfc said...

pete peters. who are you to judge someone else's life.

10:36 AM  
Blogger jfc said...

just read your twitter. a washington lawyer and a democrat lol. makes sense now

10:39 AM  
Blogger seattleirish said...

jfc - I do hope you get the irony of you making judgments on P3s life...

s.i.

11:15 AM  
Blogger Poker & Gambling 24/7 said...

FWIW, as a long time TBC follower I find Pete Peters post accurate, articulate and non-judgemental.

One thing I thought of as I read the Lightning blog post, is that it should have been much longer and more detailed considering the subject was his relationship with TBC. That should fill pages of blog text :)

Anyway, one of the refreshing things about the human condition, is that a man like Lightning (and others) have been able to give of themselves to try and better the life of another human being who has obvious and difficult challenges to get through each day. I hope there is a special place for Lightning in heaven whenever that crappy inevitable time takes place...

4:40 PM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

In the bottom photo, I see you smiling with your arm around Tony. I see Tony with arms folded and scowling. That pretty much says it all.

11:10 AM  
Blogger AyeCarambaPoker said...

Lightning looks like a bounty hunter who has stalked his prey and is going to collect.

8:09 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home