Posted: April 22, 2015 in poker
Tags: , , , , ,

He said,  The top card of the deck is burned at the beginning of each betting round, so that if the card was marked, the players would not be able to cheat.

She said, I need more orange juice.  The man lit a cigarette.  She listened to Balalaika music in her head. He glanced at the copy of Doctor Zhivago on her desk.


She read a passage to him.  “They loved each other because everything around them willed it, the trees and the clouds and the sky over their heads and the earth under their feet.  Pasternak, Zhivago”

She picked up her empty Star Trek mug.  Leonard Nimoy seemed to be watching them.  The man ran his fingers across his temple and pressed his forehead.

She told him to leave. He went back to designing his board game.  She put lotion on her hands.  It smelled like gardenia.

She said, “Yesterday’s gone on down the river and you can’t get it back. Lonesome Dove, Larry McMurtry”

The man said, Yesterday is the burn card.

She read silently. “All that’s left is the bare, shivering human soul, stripped to the last shred, the naked force of the human psyche for which nothing has changed because it was always cold and shivering and reaching out to its nearest neighbor, as cold and lonely as itself.” Pasternak, Zhivago. 


Write 500 words on any topic you like. Now remove 250 of them without changing the essence of your post.
 “Slash and Burn.”


The poker goddess isn’t me…it’s her: luck, chance, mythology, fate, destiny, adventure. It’s Maverick, Cool Hand Luke, old Westerns, whisky, cards, money, ramblers, con men, and the Bluff. It’s about skill, reading people, taking a calculated risk, making good observations, intuition. She’s intelligence, charm, image, cockiness, and out-of-the-mainstream. She is who my old friend from Ghana used to tip his cup to. She’s whispery, sexy, dark, and back alleyed. She’s danger and excitement, speakeasy’s, smoky rooms behind the bar, million dollar casino’s, 007, mystery and a gamble.


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “All About Me.” Explain why you chose your blogs title and what it means to you.

Quote  —  Posted: June 22, 2015 in poker


Posted: June 18, 2015 in poker

So, at the WSOP 2015 Colossus event at the Rio in Vegas, only 6.3% of the 22,374 (14,000 unique entries – not counting the rebuys) were women.  I wonder how many women did the rebuy?   I am not headed to Vegas until July.  One of the regulars in our poker group made it to Day 2 of the Colossus.  She is a great player!

I’m not sure how this relates to the writing prompt “Off Season” or “Choose Your Adventure” at all, but maybe for women poker players it always seems like the off-season.  Or maybe it’s because I’m having a bad run of cards.   AJ beaten by AK,  QQ beaten a flush….    It’s made me sensitive to phrases like “throws like a girl” and “that took balls.”

Honestly, I can’t be too upset, I beat men all the time.  Every time I make final table I’m beating a lot of guys to get there.  And any stereotypes about women poker players that go with it.  Most poker players seem more open-minded than to even notice gender, but I don’t know if that’s true of all of them.  Sometimes I get the feeling that some men just don’t like being beaten at cards by anyone, let alone a girl.

I know I’ve been called all kinds of horrible names on online poker, but I can ignore that, as it’s not the real world. They wouldn’t say those things to my face.

I guess they’re going to put a woman on the $10 bill. Maybe they should put a woman on the $100 to make up for lost time.

One of my co-workers gave me the the poster “the many emotions of Mister Spock.”

So, I’ve created “the many emotions of Phil Laak.” Hope you like it.


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Off-Season.” In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Choose Your Adventure.”


Recently published in an anthology by Tupelo Press.


Federico Garcia Lorca hears his heart beating at five
In the afternoon. Something changes.
He hammers stars into the evening sky. One by one
They appear and make the night grow black.

Dostoevsky climbs dark apartment stairs in Petersburg,
Remembers the firing squad, the reprieve. Startles awake
Cursing loneliness, a bright sun on a white night.

Keith Richards watches the wall, his shadow
Touching wallpaper, a song in his head,
Pepper vodka in a plastic cup.

A journalist in Sarajevo… crouched behind a jeep
As his best friend bleeds in the street. An airline ticket
Falls from the pocket of his camo jacket, hands begin
To tremble as the shots stick in the stone wall at his back.

And the angel they seek draws a few boxes with chalk,
Throws a little stone and starts to count.
From an open window in the house next door, she hears
Someone play a cello. She stops to take
A little breath, smiles ever so slightly.
Step, step, jump.
In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “On the Way.”

Quote  —  Posted: June 4, 2015 in poker

phil-lak-at-poker-tableIt really does help to have a poker face when playing poker, and if the shades & the hoodie help, which I believe they do, then I’m all for them.  I want to look like the Unabomber.  I am a huge Phil Lak fan, though.  I’ve played wearing nothing but jeans & a t-shirt and an innocent expression.  No, not strip poker.

I think the hoodie helps hide the pulse at the neck, the surge of adrenalin you get when you’re holding the best hand.

I want a sponsor so bad it hurts.  Give me a Full-Tilt shirt or a PokerStars hoodie, someone? The WPT & WSOP are only a month away.  I can do this, my game is good!!!

It all comes down to summing up the player, and for that you have to have sunglasses, although I usually just start flirting with anyone who tries to stare me down.  A little wave usually unnerves the guys more than a brutal Tom Dwan stare down.  I’ve got this boys.


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “The Clothes (May) Make the (Wo)man.”

Quote  —  Posted: May 14, 2015 in poker

Sometimes it is Aces against Kings, and you can see the storm coming.


In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Forces of Nature.”

Quote  —  Posted: May 13, 2015 in poker


I think a little time will help.  No injuries, but I was hit by a bad driver yesterday who pulled out of a side street without looking and plowed into me.  If only the other driver had taken a little more time, and not miscalculated her speed & distance.  I really love my red truck.

Life is all about physics.  Time, space & distance.

My kids had an great conversation yesterday:
“I want to just go home and watch Adventuretime all night.”
“But time is your most valuable commodity.”
“But otherwise I’d be doing math or something.”
“Well, not all time has the same value.”

And now I’ve spent my valuable time missing work and phoning insurance adjusters.  One day is not enough time to forgive or forget.

This is in response to the Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Forgive and Forget?.”

Quote  —  Posted: May 7, 2015 in poker

“If you are far from the enemy, make him believe you are near.”
 Sun Tzu

The quote above means that if you don’t have it, bluff.  If you don’t have the cards, make the enemy believe that you do.  If you have 3 to the flush, make him believe you have four, if you have deuces, make him believe they are three kings.  If you can.  Now that is the “Art” of war.

My brothers were all about bluffing.  Wouldn’t it be nice to travel back in time, to the games of our childhood? They also used to play a game with me called fifty-two pickup, that had nothing to do with Chevy’s or Fords, but rather just throwing 52 cards on the floor & telling me to pick them up.

Happy wandering….. reserving plane tickets today. Not traveling in a ’52 Pickup…although that would be way more fun. And yeah, with Maverick and Cool Hand Luke as role models, there is some planning, and a lot of happenstance.


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “The Happy Wanderer.”

What’s your travel style? Are you itinerary and schedule driven, needing to have every step mapped out in advance or are you content to arrive without a plan and let happenstance be your guide?

Quote  —  Posted: April 29, 2015 in poker