Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Blogger Freeroll Results

Ummm ... before you jump to any conclusions if you were not in the game ... I did not win. Several months ago, Tony Bigcharles, in an apparent move to disguise himself on Seals With Clubs, used my name in forming one account. Therefore, the name lightning36 was taken. I did, however, finish fourth as SugarSugar -- because I am so sweet, of course!

It was nice to see several old school bloggers and some of my usual gang of blogger buddies playing. It was a fun time with some great conversation ... and more than a few friendly jabs!

Many thanks to The Poker Meister and Bryan Micon for setting this up at Seals with Clubs. After the tournament ended, I used my winnings to play a little PLO at SWC. My donktastic skills won me a triple up pot, so this was a good night.

Could tonight have been the start of a blogger Renaissance? Stay tuned!

Blogger Freeroll Tonight!

Last chance for any poker bloggers to get in on the freeroll tonight at 7:00 p.m. Central time. For further information, go to The Poker Meister's blog at As of this morning there were 21 people registered.

btw -- The lightning36 you see at the tournament tonight will not be me. Instead, I think it is someone who looks more like this:

See you there!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Full Tilt Claims Administration- Payment Notification

Dear lightning36:

The purpose of this email is to inform you that your Petition for Remission has been approved and you are entitled to receive a distribution from the assets forfeited in connection with United States v. PokerStars, et al., pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.

A payment in the amount of $*** will be paid electronically via ACH to the bank account that you specified in your Petition. This payment represents the full amount of your Full Tilt Poker Account Balance, which you confirmed on the Full Tilt Poker administration online filing site. Payment will be made within the next seven business days.

If you have any questions, you can call us toll-free at (866) 250-2640, email us at, or write to us at Full Tilt Poker Claims Administration, c/o GCG, P.O. Box 9965, Dublin, Ohio 43017-5965. For additional information you may also visit the administration website at

Poker Blogger Freeroll This Wednesday!

Ready for a little good old blogger tournament action? The Poker Meister has helped arrange a blogger freeroll on Wednesday, February 26 at 7:00 p.m. Central time. This tournament have a little bit of a twist in that the prizes awarded will total 1/2 of a Bitcoin.

The tournament will be held at Seals With Clubs. For more information on the freeroll and instructions for qualifying (pretty simple!), go to The Poker Meister's blog at

Interested in some bragging rights and some blogger chatter might prove to be interesting? Be there Wednesday night!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

1,000th Post!

I began this blog almost eight years ago as a way to get into a special series of private online poker tournaments designed for poker bloggers only. Little did I know at that time that I would one day be making post # 1000.
When this blog started back in 2006, it would be pretty easy to see that I was totally obsessed with poker. In fact, I even seemed to do quite well back then online and in b&m poker rooms, as my 2006 year end summary indicated:
Review of 2006

2006 has proven to be quite a year for me in poker. Some of my most significant or favorite moments include:

* Joining the OnlinePokerTour (which I did just before 2006) and playing in well over 100 tournaments. These many hours of poker play helped me to get better and better as the year went on

* Chopping the Caesar's Palace noon tournament pot with three other players

* Chopping the Sahara 7pm tournament pot with five other people

* Taking down The Mookie (online bloggers tournament) in my second try

* Winning the initial K9 High Rollers tournament

* Great $1/2 NL sessions at Wynn, Bally's, and Luxor

* My first Royal Flush -- in a Shark tournament at True Poker

* Winning a Forum Challenge Event while representing the K9 Poker Tour

* Being part of the birth of the K9 Poker Tour

* Taking fourth place in the Season 1 Grand Final of the Blogger Poker Tour

* Many winning sessions at NL tables at

So yes -- poker seemed to be my life and I was doing quite well, winning online tourneys and chopping some in Las Vegas. Poker was huge everywhere and life was very good. My computer had somewhere around 35 icons for online poker sites. I remember staying up late many nights and crawling into work in the morning. Somehow my wife even found a way to tolerate me (I certainly married the right woman here!). I was attached to several online poker communities and my competitive juices were flowing 24/7. And then ...
Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 Founders Arrested
So in January 2007 when Neteller stop processing payments for USA residents, things changed. Online rooms were shutting down to USA residents, and the easy way of getting funds transferred was gone. However, poker still boomed for quite some time, but eventually the hold it had on modern culture began to fade. Online poker was still going strong in the USA, and then ...
United States v. Scheinberg
United States v. PokerStars, et al
BOOM -- these court cases caused what we call Black Friday -- April 15, 2011. Goodbye Full Tilt Poker, goodbye PokerStars, goodbye life as we knew it. Online poker and poker in general have not been the same since.
The past 999 posts have chronicled by poker experiences and many life experiences. As the poker boom faded, my posts have been less and less about poker and more and more about life in general. I still go out to Las Vegas several times a year and have lately begun dabbling a bit more in online poker. In fact, I am at a cash game table as I write this!
I am pretty amazed at how much I have written in the past eight years. Every so often I got very passionate about subjects and wrote some very good posts. Many times I was writing so that years from now I could have a journal of my life during this time, something I will no doubt treasure more in the future. And, as one of my work friends always says about life, it's all good.
Some of the unexpected benefits I received by blogging are the many friendships I have formed over the past eight years. With online poker having decreased in popularity, I have scant contact with some old friends. However, there are still several current poker buddies around, both online and in person. Sometimes these relationships overlap, which is like doubling the fun. I certainly consider my readers and contributers to be friends, for by sharing ideas, humor and camaraderie, we make our lives richer.
Thanks for reading.

 lightning36 playing in a WSOP event in Las Vegas. The beard is long gone.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Misc Poker Thoughts On A Lazy Sunday Afternoon

There is still plenty of snow on the ground in central Illinois and some nasty icy weather is on its way. Perhaps joining the part of the family that lives in Arizona would not be such a bad thing. The sun is shining, however, and spring is not too far away. But I digress.

Online poker funds and payouts

Last month I cashed out some money from Bovada. As expected, I received a check about a week later. Easy peasy -- just the way we like it!

We are now more than halfway through February. Will we really get our Full Tilt Poker money deposited in our accounts by the end of the month as previously notified? I am betting the answer is yes.

Home poker game

My home game has been held virtually every week after a long hiatus last fall, but I have been hesitant to go. The games seem to be more akin to playing slot machines than poker. A couple of weeks ago I lost a huge pot when someone called my pre-flop all in (Q-Q) with ... A-3os. Of course, the villain binked an Ace on the river. Others had called and I was good until the river. I am reminded of Daniel Negreanu and one of his more interesting WSOP moments:

Earlier this year I had, for the first time in my poker career, lent money to a fellow poker player, a guy from my home game who had busted out a few times while we were at a riverboat poker room. I had read and heard so many stories of guys getting stiffed by other players and was hoping that it wouldn't happen to me. Thankfully, I was paid back yesterday. All is good in the world.
Online poker activities
I occasionally play in some private tournaments on Bovada and Carbon Poker, then hopefully use any freeroll winnings to build up my account. It worked last month at Bovada, but the going has been slow in February. I tend to play micro pot limit Omaha, but have begun playing some Double or Nothing sit and go tournaments. It is fun to dabble in online poker, but I do not know that it will be anything more until the USA finally decides to utilize online poker and its great tax potential.
Next post -- something very special.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Upcoming Poker Blogger Bitcoin Freeroll at Seals with Clubs

New news on a new venture for poker bloggers -- a bitcoin freeroll tournament set up on Seals with Clubs! I will post additional information when I have a little time, but for now, please visit the blog of my good buddy The Poker Meister for details.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Monday Night Quickie & Marcus Smart

Just a quick post since the blog has not been active the past week ...

After a trip to Las Vegas, a bad week with a cold and then catching up on work, my life is still not yet quite back on track. Work keeps me busy with new challenges almost every day, and dang -- I need to catch up.

Sickness seems to go hand in hand with the extremely cold weather this winter. Just as I was getting well my wife and daughter got sick. Daughter recovered after a few days, but my wife was sicker than a dog for over a week. She is finally snapping out of it, though. My mom is currently in the hospital, which is always scary at her advanced age.

Marcus Smart

Every sports fan has likely seen the video of Oklahoma State University basketball player Marcus Smart shove a Texas Tech fan.

Granted, members of college basketball and other sports teams should have better control of their emotions. However, imagine giving your all on the floor, tumbling into the crowd (where two guys were actually helping Smart up), then having some jerkoff fan call you a piece of crap to your face. Yeah -- some stupid shit home town fan decided to play big man and yells at the college kid. The idiot deserved the push imo. Just show some class and don't embarrass the team you are rooting for. Great adult behavior.

Monday, February 03, 2014

The Day the Music Died: 55 Years Ago Today

The famous plane crash that took the life of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper was 55 years ago today -- Feb 3, 1959. In 2010, I wrote a post on my visit to the site, including some good information and pictures. If you are interested in this important event in rock and roll history, check out the pictures from my crash site post.