Monday, May 07, 2007

Estefans: Getting Into the Game

#286 of 2500, Commemorative Gloria Estefan Caesar's Palace $5 Chip

Pictured above is not only a commemorative $5 gaming chip produced by Paulson and released by Caesar's Palace, but it is a goal. It is an idea. It is a game. It is a hope, and a wish.

Last time Darsky and I went to Vegas, we spent a little time in the Caesar's card room. While there I was forced by my affection for poker chips browse through the different commemorative chips I had in my stack. The ones I found ranged from "Grand Opening" to "Celine Dion" to "Gloria Estefan". As I had finished plucking through my chips I headed over to Dar's table to ask if had found any different ones.

As I neared his table I could see that him and Brandon were already feverishly tearing through their stacks. As I approached Brando let out an excited "hah!" as he held up a Gloria Estefan chip. I asked Darsky what was going on between the two of them, and he had told me that the hunt was on between the two of them to obtain the lowest numbered commemorative Estefan chip. Brandon had just found #0059, and he had proudly placed it atop his mountain of cheques.

The mission quickly spread throughout the entire table, as Darsky and Brandon had everyone at their table searching through their stacks to try to beat the current leader. By the end of the night, Darsky had managed to extract the #0059 from Brandon, and he had held the lead when we left the poker room that night.

I hadn't bothered to take any Estefans that night, both because I wasn't at their table, and because I busted. But as soon as I realized the severity of the challenge, I promised myself that whenever we went back I'd get in the hunt to compete with the other two playahs.

We were impressed for sure that night, both with the classiness of the poker room as well as with the atmosphere of the players. And although the location isn't optimal the room still gets decent action. We instantly put it on our list of places to play every time we went out to Sin City, and even though it felt like a short trip this time we made it over there again.

When we arrived, since I had no roll and barely any cash on me, I decided to sit in the $1-3NL game. There was a bunch of tables of different sizes running, and Vegas in general was extra full because of the fight at the MGM Grand Saturday night. I didn't have to wait too long to get a table.

I bought in for $100 and quickly turned that into around $380 before getting smacked by two back to back inside straight draws for my entire stack. This put me on ultra tilt and I went into a mental shell for a second before I rebought for $200 and quickly upped myself back to around $460 within twenty minutes. Once settled on some chips again, my brain calmed down and I realized that I hadn't even started looking for Estefans yet!

I quickly tore down my two towers to sniff out any Estefans, yet the only one I could find was a #1516/2500. Surely enough that wasn't even something I could show around the circle of competitors. Even though Brandon had already reported back a #0029 since our last departure, I felt that I could hold a position in the races if I could find anything within the #0300 mark.

Darsky had come over since he left his table, and him and I got into discussion as to what the number to beat was. The kid sitting across from me overheard our convo and he was soon looking through his $800+ to find some Estefans of his own. He ended up coming out with the #0286. I bargained with him and it was soon in my possession. I found a decent number to hold on to until next time we go back, where I'll be in major hunt mode.

We left Caesar's with me up $160, but that was the extend that my profits would see for the weekend. We headed over to the MGM while I decided if I should hit up the $1-2NL and have enough for a couple buy-ins, or if I should try to take advantage of the super soft $2-5NL games they had running, which would require putting my whole cash stash on the line.

I picked the latter, and found myself at one of the softest tables I had seen in quite a while. There was a bunch of guys drinking, and they were damn friendly. If the phrase "the nicer the guy, the worse the poker player" was ever true, it definitely applied to this table. I dropped a tiny bit with a couple missed flops before I picked up QQ in late position.

The friendly next to me check-raised me from the small blind on a flop of 4-5-7. I made my read and it didn't take long to get my stack in against A-7. An Ace on the turn felted me and I was done for the weekend. Mitch and JCruz came to pick me up and we headed over to Buffalo Wild Wings. At that point I hadn't slept for 37 hours, and hadn't eaten for 12. We ate like kings at that place, and after that Mitch and I headed back to the MGM to wait for Darsky to finish up so we could go hang out.

Darsky treated Mitch and I to a night of drinks after we were both completely cleaned out, and we had a hell of a good time on Saturday morning/Sunday night. The three of us ended our drinking parade at Planet Hollywood, where John works. We sat at the bar and Keno battled (as is tradition), and met a few fun people.

There was a smokin hot chick in the lounge, talking for forever with what looked like her parents. I kept checking her out, and after about a twenty-minute losing stretch at Keno, I decided to have my drunk self recruit her for my number-picking. As I approached them, the parents looked pretty shocked, but she had no hesitation to jump out of her chair to follow me to the video Keno machines.

The first round she picked for me, she hit a 4/7 and I was instantly shouting with joy. She was hesitant to stay for one more round, but she did again and hit for 3/7 spots. Again, I shouted with elation as I praised her infinite skill. I was definitely drunk, and I definitely made a big deal out of it to all those involved in the Keno battle.

I pleaded with her to stay, but as she laser-eyed her parents, a sad look came across her face and she insisted that she had to go. I looked over and saw her parents (now standing) with a stern/disappointed look on their faces, and I quickly asked her name. I'm pretty sure it was Christina, and as she picked up her purse to walk away I found out that she was only 17, hence the severity of her parents demands that she walk away.


We finished up and headed over to find John, who was dealing a $2-4 game in the poker room. The three of us sat down courtesy of Darsky, and I almost instantly started falling asleep at the table, thanks to the fact that I had been up for 50 hours straight by that point. I busted with A8 on a 6-7-8-8 board all in against 7-7, and I blanked the river.

After that I tried to fall asleep in about three different spots in the poker room while I waited for Mitch and Darsky to finish up, and for JCruz to finish his shift. I was rejected three times.

I finally pulled up a chair behind Dar, and dozed in and out while trying to keep awake for the next hour. I finally got some relief when Cruz finished his shift early, and I passed out for six hours at John's place before we headed home.

All in all, it was a weekend of fun and hanging out with John. A little cards were played (obviously), but moreso it was a hell of a getaway from the every day grind at the office, and I definitely need that. I also came away with an Estefan to get myself in the game, and you can bet your ass I'm gonna make a strong push for a good number when we go back in June.

Until next time.


Brando said...

You sir.. HOW DARE YOU insult my estefan! I hold #0026 thank you very much. We def need to hang out next time you guys are in town. lemme know

Kid Crash said...

Haha so it's 0026....I knew it was close to that. Sorry to offend

And we should be back out there at the start of June, so we'll be giving you guys a call for sure.