OK, finally getting around to posting on the second day of our Mississippi adventure. Yeehaw!
Lane and I grabbed a lunch buffet after waking up Friday. The great thing about the crowds is that the poker room bigwigs just hand out complimentary buffet tickets like tap water rather than checking to see if you've actually played any poker. It's a great opportunity for any casino angle shooters to score free food if they are knowledgable of the situation.
After Lane and I grabbed plates full of food (I believe I had one with quesadillas, egg rolls and sweet potatoes...yum, gotta love buffets) we overheard people's conservations about poker hands at other tables. The only thing poker players love nearly as much as playing poker is talking about poker.
"Those conversations go on for every minute of every hour of every day, 365 days a year," Lane said. And then in his best disbelieving voice in mimicing one of the other players, he added, "How could he call with that hand?!?"
Lane hung around the Shoe waiting on a game while I walked back to the Gold Strike to see how the tournament was going. I spotted Clonie Gowen talking with Robert Williamson III, but did not want to interrupt. She had agreed to an interview online a couple of weeks earlier and I hoped I might catch her at a more convenient time. Unfortunately, I did not see her again.
I spotted my buddies Joe and Scott from Tuscaloosa in line to buy into the $500 limit hold'em tourney the next day and snuck in line with them. Hey, no honor among theives. I bought my entry and headed back to the Shoe, passing tournament players walking briskly through the cold and rain to the Gold Strike with plastic bags full of chips. And they say poker is not a physical activity.
I later settled into a $10-$20 game, with a classic player two seats to my left. The man in his 40s had greased back hair, a leather jacket, four-day stubble and an unlit cigarette hanging out of his mouth Farha style. When a woman hit a $990,000 jackpot on a Wheel of Fortune slot machine behind us, we started chatting about what we would do with that money.
"I'd find a higher limit table," said the guy with the cigarette.
Shortly afterwards, a new player sat directly to my left with an elaborate poker tattoo on his right arm that incorporated kings, jacks and the four suits. He had nearly every part of his face pierced and said he was from Long Island. And to break stereotype he was probably the nicest guy at the table. He apologized profusely to me when he hit quad 4s against my set of 10s on the river to put a sweet little bad beat on me in a $500 pot. That one stung. Less than an hour later I was busted out of my $400 buy in and headed to the room for sleep before the big tournament.