Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Mini Road Trip To See TBC - sevencard2003 - Tony Bigcharles

It had been several weeks since I had taken a poker road trip of note. The opportunity came Sunday as I hopped in my car and took off on a poker adventure -- slinging some cards with TBC aka sevencard2003 aka Tony Bigcharles. I had hoped to do so the weekend before, but Tony's rampant paranoia about protecting his roll kept him from mentioning where he was until it was too late for me to sufficiently get my other life responsibilities in order to make the trip. In fact, I almost did not make this one.

A confession to make: I know I am exactly the kind of guy that Tony should fear. I mean, I own a house, am married with three kids, have a great job in higher education, and work as a professional counselor -- just the kind of guy who would be looking to mug someone and steal all his cash! Furthermore, I had met Tony earlier in the year, had sprung for a late night meal for him, and even bought him a pair of jeans that I had shipped from a department store to him. Obviously my cunning nature knows no bounds!

I had tentatively arranged to meet Tony at the Harrah's Joliet poker room on Saturday. However, his obfuscation of travel plans derailed that idea. The same with Sunday -- late notice, which certainly made things more difficult for me and took away the opportunity for Tony to get free lightning36 taxi service for the day. Ah well ...

I hemmed and hawed for awhile. Fool that I am, however, I took to the road Sunday afternoon. I almost turned back about 25 miles into my trip since I was still upset at Tony's lack of trust in me. Had a phone conversation with Very Josie. I dropped many f-bombs. I felt better. I drove on.

Pretty soon I began to think that I had made a big mistake. Rain and darkness enveloped me. This was my view out the front window. Looks kind of dark, huh? It was mid-afternoon -- about 3:30!

It got even worse as the rain came down even harder and the hail started beating on my car. Seeing the road? What road? Muhahahahaha!

I had to pull over and park under a bridge. That, of course, is scary in itself. Nothing like watching trucks whiz past you, hoping one doesn't lose control.

I got to Harrah's at 5:00 p.m. and went straight to the poker room. I texted Tony that I was there. He came shortly thereafter and sat down next to me -- right in time for the big blind. You can guess what happened next. There was a slight misunderstanding between Tony and the dealer. Tony left and came back a couple of hands later. No post was required and sanity returned to the poker room.

We played for a few hours with mixed success. I failed to get my really good hands to pay off. Unfortunately, they came against conservative players who folded to my reraises when I flopped the nut flush and flopped a set. At the end of the first session I was up a little bit. Tony lucked out when he called an all in with A-Q after the flop against a pair of tens on a low board. The turn: Ace. The river: Queen!

After getting something to eat in the Diamond Lounge courtesy of Tony (for I am a lowly Platinum Total Rewards Member), we sat down at the NL table again. This time Tony took one on the chin when he had a pair with a good kicker and called an all in push by someone with A-K that didn't improve after the flop. This time the Ace on the turn stole the hand from Tony. Later on he said he was tired and should stop, which would have saved him some money. He called an all in with A-Q, thinking the guy was just bluffing. Unfortunately, the player had K-K and took a large chunk of Tony's buy in. I lost a little bit and ended up down a few bucks for the evening.

After poker, I watched Tony play some traditional blackjack. I am certainly not a blackjack expert and do not have the strategy chart memorized, but it seemed to me that he only made one questionable move in the time I watched. He won back some of what he lost in poker, which seems to have been a common theme these past several months. In truth, I was more impressed by the blackjack skill I saw than by, in my opinion, questionable poker play.

Tony then sat down at the Omaha table, but I needed to get back home. We got someone to snap a quick picture of us ...

... and then it was back on the road to once again travel into a monsoon.

As I was tiring in the wee morning hours, I was abruptly awakened by the flashing red and blue lights of an Illinois State Trooper who pulled me over for having my rear license plate light out. I imagine the monsoon might have done that. Seeing that I was not intoxicated, he gave me a warning ticket and I was on my way for the remaining 45 minutes of my trip home.

I pulled into my driveway in the wee hours of the morning, tired after a quick 12-hour poker road trip. There was only one thought on my mind: Must sleep immediately ...


Blogger sevencard2003 said...

u never told me before about the trooper, or the hail. was glad to see u made it over, u are welcome to come again, my checkout date is thurs. not entirely sure yet where im heading. i did NOT shove with the AQ, i called his allin. but actually, that makes my play worse. (referring to the hand against the 10 10) not the KK. what was the questionable BJ move?

1:56 AM  
Blogger sevencard2003 said...

oops forgot to say, u should mention that u do NOT have a diamond card and that it was ME who invited to take u in the diamond lounge.

2:07 AM  
Blogger Carmel said...

You're splitting hairs Tony.

7:11 AM  
Blogger Josie said...

Lightning, you're fucking skinny! omfg! I'm glad we talked and you went to spend time with Tony. And Tony DOES trust you, it's just that he gets scared and paranoid sometimes.

Looking forward to playing poker with both of you in June. Oh and when Tony takes a picture WITH ME, he'll be smiling.

8:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

whos the mexican in the pic?

8:13 AM  
Blogger crafty said...

Lightning, perhaps an unfortunate combination of expressions, talking about "BJ skills" and "Taking one on the chin..."

8:26 AM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

@ Gary -- You had me cracking up when I read your comment, man!

@ TBC -- I didn't tell you about the trooper because it happened on my way home from the casino. I didn't mention the hail in our conversation -- no particular reason. You are also correct about the A-Q hand. My bad -- the post is now corrected. I do not recall the particulars on the BJ hand. As I recall, you asked for one more card in a situation where I believe proper play was to stand and hope the dealer busted. Sorry - just don't remember the details, which is why I said I thought the move was questionable -- not just that it was definitely the wrong play to make. I did not mention the Diamond Lounge in my original draft because you were trying to hide where you were staying. I put it in right before I published the post since you announced on Twitter where you were. I have now slightly revised thi part of the post.

Tony, I wrote this post in the hope that you may begin to understand how your lack of trust in friends affects them. I like you and consider you a friend. But you need to get past this idea that everyone is going to rob you. You have so many people who comment on your blog who are rooting for you. I hope you don't chase them all away as you have apparently done to other former supporters.

8:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was nice of you to spend time with him and help him out in the past. I think it helps that he has positive contact with people to counter the stupid comments some clowns leave on his blog. He should be more worried about telling strangers at the table or random women about his blog/roll rather than someone he's met before. Tatude

9:11 AM  
Blogger Lucki Duck said...

I check Tony's site occasionally, and I continue to see the same patterns in his decision making. I'm afraid where it will lead him and really hope he finds a way to turn things around before it's too late.

*Pat on the back* for you for making the trip.

9:30 AM  
Blogger The Poker Meister said...

You did a very nice thing going out & meeting Tony. I'd imagine the trust issue is due to Tony's autistic tendencies, so good for you that you can get past that. Next time I'm out in your area, we can make a go at a meet-up as well; unfortunately, it didn't work last time. I'm kinda scared to meet you though - it's the people you LEAST expect that are going to rob you :-).

10:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You head patter, you!

11:11 AM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

A guest appearance by this most recent "Anonymous." I am impressed!

11:43 AM  
Blogger SirFWALGMan said...

Tony looks a little angry did you pat his butt?

2:36 PM  
Blogger Rob said...

Very nice of you Lightning to meet up with Tony and risk the weather to do so. Joliet, huh? I thought he was in St. Louis. I can't keep up with the guy. I guess I just don't read carefully enough.

Interesting picture of you two. I'm pretty sure you just stole Tony's roll based on the expression on his face.

I like Josie's comment about putting a smile on his face! I'll bet.

6:25 PM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

Who's that skinny guy impersonating you??

9:10 PM  
Blogger Pete P. Peters said...

Lightening - Good thing you were not otherwise distracted on your drive by, say, taking some pictures through the windshield!

3:19 PM  

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