Monday, December 21, 2009


Christmas Eve Dinner
Baked Brie

Baked Ham
Butter Nut Squash
Crescent Rolls


Iced Tea
Schlafly Christmas Ale
Sierra Nevada Celebration
Boulevard Nut Cracker

Christmas Dinner
Mushroom Puff Pastry Turnovers

Corn Casserole
Green Bean Casserole
Mashed Potatoes
Horseradish Sauce
Yorkshire Pudding
Prime Rib Roast * changed back to use the old recipe

Pumpkin Pie
Cheese Cake TBD

Iced Tea
Ommegang Hennipen
Trader Joe's Vintage 2009 Ale (hey, it's brewed by Unibroue and is $4.99 for 750ML so back off. seriously go buy some and cellar it, I am)
Avalon Cabernet Sauvignon

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Journey - Winter Classic 2009

Dear friend-

I am 90 minutes into a 3 hour flight and already finished my book. I am surrounded by cowboys and degens on Air Greyhound flight 2884 back to my life.

I am writing this on my blackberry. There are 4 ibuprofen on the tray in front of me, waiting for their diet coke. I am listening to Steve Miller as that is the only music I had that was a remotely appropriate companion to John's wonderful collection "Returning the Favor". Sorry John, they wouldn't let me read it aloud on the plane and I couldn't let it just sit there. "The Christmas Lights" gets me every time.

My ibuprofen are swimming now. The music is now Violent Femmes. My head doesn't hurt, my knees do. I am an old man made temporarily melancholy by a cocktail of exhaustion and a good read.

2009 is the year I barely played poker. I hung out more, tried to be myself as much as possible. Tried to have real conversations. The funny thing is I played as well as I could have expected to in the tourney. I stole timely and tried to keep my decisions simple. I busted on the 2nd hand of the final table. Al made it 25k from the button and I was sitting at 7 bb and had a pp. Al's bet had me covered. Al ran out broadway. The slow death.

So what has changed since the summer of 2005? A lot of the faces, even the ones that are the same. In some ways I wish I would have stayed with my normal M.O. In other ways this was the better experience.

The depravity and disgustingness that Pauly always writes about stood out to me for some reason this time. Maybe its because of Casino Royale craps, or maybe because I paid attention. I wonder if that is what the town does to you or if they are already like that and its why they end up here.

I went to a show and I left the strip. I played craps. I went deep in the tourney. I was basically sober. I drank but not much. I didn't get stuck the first night. I didn't bang Iggy in the ass, he was double teamed by two 2 Eurotrash grad students named Hanz and Franz. All firsts for a WPBT trip for me.

I always have regrets while flying home. Being Nardi free sucked. Bobby always brings a party and BG always has the right words to make someone get off their metaphysical plane and return to the floor of the Geisha Bar. That was less a regret than an observation. Regrets were more around not doing a better job of saying goodbye as I don't know how much longer I can keep doing this.

No I am not retiring or any bullshit like that its just my life is crazy now. I have three kids and a house that needs more work than Iggy's tranny hooker. I can't promise I'll be back.

It makes me sad because a few of you know the difference between the IRL me and the "good" me. I'd like to share that with a few more, but suspect we are stuck in a rut and will never have that chance.


P.S. In case I don't make it next year, Iggy will do ATM if you let him reverse cowboy.