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Poker News | World Series of Poker | WSOP2009 | The Works

Day 13 Of The WSOP: What Makes A Woman Scream With Joy?

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It is hard to believe that it's been nearly two weeks since the World Series of Poker kicked off. That saying “time flies when you're having fun” is oh so true. I spent most of today in the thick of things, walking around the tables and watching the action. Lately, I hadn't been doing as much of that and was beginning to wonder if there was anything to write about. The thing I learned is there's actually some interesting things to write about if you just watch and listen.

I started the day off watching the final two tables of the 5K NLHE event. Ivan Demidov was on the rail sweating his girlfriend and I could see that he was visibly anxious. I've always thought it's easier to play in a big tournament yourself than it is to watch a friend or a loved one playing in one. I tried to ask Ivan about this but he was so set on watching her that I didn't waste much time trying to get an answer. She would end up making the final table and finishing in 5th place. Not bad at all.

The 2.5K 6 handed NLHE drew a very impressive field. Over 1,000 players for a prize pool of nearly 2.5 million. I don't remember any 2.5K NLHE event ever drawing that many players, but I could be wrong. I was walking through the tournament and ran into Joe Sebok and started talking to him. We got to talking about this kid named Joe Serock and the irony of someone having a name that close to his. I joked that they should have a Joe and Joe Sebok and Serock show sometime on PokerRoad and Sebok told me that he had actually talked to Serock and that he was a really nice kid. Right about then, this kid in a blue hat turns around at the table next to us and says hey to us. It's Joe Serock! What are the odds of that happening. Sebok laughs and says “I'm glad I was saying nice things about you.”

Apparently, you have to be twittering to know what's going on in your tournament. When they re-started the $10,000 Omaha 8 event, Jack Effel got on the microphone and said “I hope you all got my twitter about the event restarting in the Amazon Room instead of Brasilia.”

I had taken the day off and avoided the overwhelming start of the women's tournament the day before. The women's event restarted with about 140 women today, a much more manageable number. It's not that I don't like watching women playing poker... I do... I just don't like watching women's event. I think you have to see it to understand it, but there's something about hugging people and clapping after a person busts out and the “oh, I'm so sorry honey” attitude that just strikes me as wrong. I'm all about being nice and respectful to your opponents but a lot of that just strikes me as fake and insincere. Then there is the overwhelming perfume. I literally start to sneeze walking through the tournament floor whenever there is a women's event. Don't some of these women know about moderation?

I actually spent a good part of the day, however, watching the women's event because a former student of mine was playing and I wanted to see how she did. When the women make the money is another interesting situation to watch. It's probably the most joyous cashing at the WSOP outside of the Main Event. Women are screaming and hugging and kissing and dancing on tables naked (ok that last part is just a dream of mine) and wanting so badly to be able to go on break to call everyone that the tournament director gives them a special break just so they can do so. So if you've ever wondered what the answer to the question “What makes a woman scream with joy?” is... it's money.

While I was watching my former student, a number of photographers came by and were snapping shots of a very cute, young female player. I had no idea who she was and thought it was kind of cliché that they were taking her photo just because of the way she looked. I was curious though and she had this patch on her shirt that said “Ari's Training Center” and I was wondering what that was about so I went and asked her. She told me that she had been training with Bodog Ari and Maven, the 2008 Bluff Player of the Year, at their training center. OK, so there's more to this girl than just a pretty face, I thought.

I got her name and went and did a little research on her and Ari and Maven. I read an article that explained a lot about their training center and it sounded very interesting, especially for someone like myself who has spent a ton of time teaching people NLHE tournaments. I wrote down my contact information and gave it to Lauren (the girl’s name) and asked her if she would pass it on to Ari or Maven for me so we could set up a time to talk. I don't do a lot of interviews, but this was something that interested me.

Turns out, I would be walking around and would see a young guy with glasses standing on the rail with a jacket that said “Maven” on it. I took a chance that this was the same Maven and went up and introduced myself. We talked for probably the better part of a half hour about poker and poker teaching and set up a time for me to go see the training center in person and see what it's all about. I left a little before the end of the day and unfortunately Lauren and her great smile would bust out shortly after I left.

It's weird the things you get known for. One of the things I've done at the Main Event the last two years is carried around a pink stuffed animal and had pro's take their pictures with it. I first did it two years ago as a prop bet and then again last year we did it for charity. I'll often walk up to a player and they'll ask me where my pink bear or pink cat is. Beth Shak wants me to get like a gigantic snake or something this year. I told her if she bought it, I'd use it. Erica Schoenberg told me the pictures of her with the stuffed animals were the only photos of herself she actually likes. I guess it's good to be known for something. Maybe I should change my online screen name to pinkstuffedanimalmediadude.

Rick Fuller came up to me on one of the breaks and told me that I had to check out this video he had just put up. I'd be remiss if I didn't share this with you just because I found it so highly amusing:

As I was walking around the tables, this older guy passed me mumbling “idiots. They're all idiots.” Well that obviously caught my attention so I turned to follow him. He continued his muttering by saying “this guy talks about losing 3K, 5K, all the time. Well it's no wonder.” The kid he is referring to is just sitting there with a big smirk on his face and is stacking chips. I'm going to take a wild guess that idiots mumbler guy had just suffered a bad beat.

While I'm there watching this, I overhear some talk from the table next to me. Greg Raymer and the kid he's sitting next to are talking about a fight and if Raymer would stand a chance against the kid. Raymer insisted his extra 150 pounds of weight would make a huge difference and the kid says that it wouldn't. “I'm used to dealing with large guys,” the kids says without realizing how that sounds.

The table laughs and I just start jotting a note down in my notebook. “You're not going to write that are you?” he asks me.

Well duh, of course I am. To be fair to the kid (and I figured I better write this or he might hunt me down and kick my ass), he was talking about when he played college football. It was still funny though.

Yep, the WSOP is picking up steam. More going on tomorrow and as usual I'll be there. Until then...

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