Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Vegas Trip Report-Arrival and Day I - Part I

Ive been on a little heater since I got back. No wins but three runner-up finishes including one in a short-handed rebuy and one in the PA buyin league for $84 in a small field $10 buyin event (with Lou "my lucky penny" Krieger in the field). Been collecting my thoughts on Vegas so here goes....

Depart from Albany International Airport at 5:45 PM July 8th. Mom has dropped me off and has proceeded to lecture me on stashing my cash to avoid pick pockets and BLAH BLAH BLAH.. Why do mothers always mother?? As critical as mom can be sometimes, she did tell me I looked great with my hair newly colored and styled etc and she could really see that I had lost a good amount of weight since Xmas.

While waiting to board, I pull out All-IN magazine and a gentlemen casually wanders over to ask if I play. I say yes, and I'm on my way to Vegas. Turns out the gent's name is Norm and he plays in Norm Chads Home game. He was back east for a wedding and headed home to So Cal. He said its not often you find a gal reading a poker magazine in the airport (unless its Vegas I reckon)--note to self try this again sometime.

A nice looking guy named Jim sits next to me on the first leg. I guess him to be about mid thirties. Turns out he is a soldier (army 14 years) returning to base after visiting family in Glens Falls. When I change planes at Midway, I'm southwest A boarding line and he is B or C so we aren't seated next to each other on the Chi-town/Sin City leg. Its at Midway, I definitely know Im stood up. No tears as I was expecting Scott not to be there.

Arrive in Vegas about 9:20 PM PST (Its 12:20 AM back east). We are about twenty minutes early. While waiting for bags Jim offers me a ride to Treasure Island and a tour of the strip and downtown Vegas. He hasnt driven down the strip in a bit and I say what the heck. I may not get the opportunity again. So I get a cool ride all the way from the airport past Mandalay Bay and down to Fremont Street/Glitter Gulch and then back to my hotel at TI... WOO HOO. I saved on cab fare. I see about 3 Elvis Impersonators on one street corner (more run in Bay to Breakers I mentally note) and am amused. Vegas is one big adult Disneyland. Seeing the Excalibur reminds me of Cinderella's Castle. As I pass by TI I hear the noise of the Siren battle. Im taken by Vegas and can't wait to really feel its pulse.

Finally arrive at TI after midnight. I had called to change from smoking to non-smoking when I knew Jayke/Scott was probably gonna be a no show. TI can't accomodate me Saturday nite due to my late arrival, but assure me I can change rooms and floors on Sunday.

Sunday AM. Im up kind of early even with the travel day and time change. I head down to Starbucks. They are out of Blackberry stuff for the Blackberry Green Tea Frapps or some ingredient. I order my next fav Venti Java Chip lite. Back up to room to wait for Carol/DCI Assassin headed in from Toronto. Shes booked at the Stratosphere for her trip. Carol finally arrives I give her the money she had sent to me on pokerstars player to player so she could avoid getting dinged the exchange rate on a Neteller withdrawal. We head down to the TI buffet. I am true to my word and dont overeat. For a gal that's been dumped my appetite is good. I binge on four desserts. Creme Brulee my fav and some mousse thingee, a chocolate covered banana pop (yum) and chocolate covered strawberry. I passed on my favorite Eggs Benedict but did have lots of Lox and onion and tomatoes... NO CAPERS!!! . All in all TI buffet gets a A-. Carol stashes her bags and herself for a a nap in my room after I change floors and rooms as she has a late check-in of 3 PM. She marvels at the number of pairs of shoes I have brought for 4 days. After changing shoes about three times I default to the trusty and comfy Birkenstocks. Im wearing an OLD Navy tshirt and pair of Madras low riding shorts.

On to the Rio to check out the Ladies event and the PL Omaha 10k buyin (Ka-ching). I spot Emily H right away. We had met in Atlantic City in 2005 at the WPC showdown. Shes direct bought in and gives me the so-so sign. I go in search of Ellen and anyone else I might recognize. No Ellen, no Jen Tilly but while watching I hear "I know you". Turns out its Lisa, another gal I met in Atlantic City. She won her seat thru Poker Host(aka Poker worst in my book) but busted out early. We catch up exchange email addresses etc. I run into "Survivor" aka Tina Bergstrom after she is busted (Tina is Kathy Leibert's manager/friend etc)We are having breakfast tomorrow. She tells me that she had only one other person at her table who had played live before. Her Tourney is a trainwreck. Kathy comes over to make dinner plans with Tina. She's hopping between two events.

One blog report I read said he had never seen such a large assembly of fat ugly out of shape women as assembled in the Amazon room on July 9th 2006. He had a point. I'd say there was also quite a large amount of testosterone in the ladies event. I've never seen that many mannish looking gals in one place either. Another thing I noticed, one minute one side of the Amazon room was filled with woman players, and after we were kicked out for breaks (annoying as all hell) and we returned only half the field remained. WTF. Women were busting out like Pamela Anderson's breasts in a low cut top!!

Carol has now caught up with me at the RIO. I announce I'm off to watch the PL Omaha event. Which means I really just turn around and face the other direction or head down the other aisle. It is a $10,000 buyin and a who's who of Poker Nobility. First I spot hottie Ram "Crazy Horse' Vaswani of the Hendon Mob, then I see Scotty Nguyen, then Eric Seidel and Howard Lederer at one table, then I see Doyle's brim of his Stetson, Then I see Scottie Fischman and Chau Giang. DevilFish stands up with his WSOP bling on one wrist. Clean shaven he is. Then I see what looks like Sam Farha without a suit jacket or trade mark cig in mouth. Im told by another on looker that it is indeed him. Incognito Sammy?. TJ is seated and I see he is a big man. When he walks by me on his dinner break I realize he is a really big man. For some reason I pictured him Emmett Smith sized. Jesus also walks by me but not on water at the break. Chris, its time to cut the hair, trim the beard and get a little more fashionable. Not sure I can trust a man who cuts fruit with cards.

The annoying thing is being kicked out of the Amazon room what seems like every 30 minutes or so for staggered breaks. Carol and I browse and check out the poker rooms who have set up shop at the WSOP and I accept all Swag. We head into the Full Tilt room and Pstars room. Who is sitting next to me in the Pokerstars lounge.....????.... Isabelle Mercier and her friend from the EPT whose name I now forget. I congratulate her on her 5th place finish in her recent event. She is gracious and doesnt make the faces she makes on TV. She's signing autographs and waiting for mustard for her sandwich. She never gets her mustard and she never eats the sandwich. I dont bother her for her autograph and I forget to take a picture with her. Barry Greenstein also stops in. He munches some food but is in the VIP area. He signs autographs too and is carrying around a copy of his book. Im not an autograph hound so I dont bother him either.

End of Part I Day I (to be continued with the Cartel party and IG's first live cash!!)

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