Saturday, January 02, 2010

Sleeping In

You ever see those pictures of baby animals, usually kittens or puppies, where they have their eyes half-open and they're looking around with that WTF? Where am I? expression on their face? That's how I feel right about now, except a whole lot less cute. I slept like a rock for about nine hours, not getting out of bed until 11:30 this morning. My arm was wet with drool and I had a big ol' crease embedded in my face from the seam of the pillow. I must've crashed pretty hard, but it sure felt good.

The first order of business this morning was to put on a pot of coffee, and I'm enjoying that very much as I type this. I'm all out of the peppermint mocha holiday creamer, so it's back to hazelnut and coconut until next November (which is also the same time the cocktail waitresses break out the naughty Santa outfits, so hooray for November!).

Since there are no decent bowls being played today, and no NFL games, my Saturday is going to be spent doing household chores. (But didn't they used to always play two NFL games on the last two Saturdays of the season? It seems to me that they used to do that, but I can't quite remember). I've already run the dishwasher, but the whole apartment needs a good vacuuming and my bathroom could use a good scrubbing. I'd rather it smell like an Olympic-sized swimming pool than the current damp-towel and air freshener scent it's got going on right now.

And my dining room is a mess. There's a shelf right next to the front door that has become a catch-all for everything I'm carrying when I come home--junk mail, CDs, random trinkets, pens, receipts, etc. I need to clean that up, and while I'm at it, I'm finally going to get the last of the storage totes out of there and put away. A few weeks ago, when I was looking for Alaska pictures while writing that road-trip post, I pulled all of my Rubbermaid totes out of the storage closet (which were stacked floor-to-ceiling), and emptied them out all over the dining room.

While the pictures weren't in any of the totes--I found them in the coat closet--I never gotten around to putting everything back, and my dining room looks pretty cluttered. But before I do, I'm going to have a document-shredding party that would put the most corrupt politician to shame. I swear, I've got about fifty pounds of old statements and bills and other assorted paperwork that I've been lugging around for years. But no more--today, it all goes to the dumpster. Same thing goes for the twenty-odd March Madness III pint glasses that somehow made it home with me. Seriously, if I'm drinking beer with that many people at the same time, it ain't gonna be in my living room.

I'll tell you what I'm not gonna do tonight, though. I'm not gonna go out and play poker. If last night was any indication of how 2010 is going to be at the poker tables, well, I may as well just retire my iPod and chip protector right now. I went down to the M around 8:30 or so, and managed to win one single big pot in almost four hours of play. The worst was when I raised a Kill Pot with Ace-King of Clubs, got three callers, and the flop came out King-Ace-Four. I bet all the way and one guy kept calling as the turn and river brought running Sevens.

I ended up losing my entire stack when my genius opponent turned over Seven-Four offsuit to show his runner-runner full house. What made it even worse is that my gal 'Sammi' was the one who dealt it. I could see the pained look on her face as she pushed the $180 pot to my opponent, because she knew that if she'd pushed it to me, she would've gotten a whole helluva lot more than the single dollar that the mope who sucked out gave her.

I figured that if the odds were that heavily skewed against me to lose a hand in that manner, there was no point in playing any further. I flipped Sammi a redbird that I had in my pocket (that's casino-speak for a $5 chip) and told her not to worry about it, and I headed for the parking garage. So no more poker for me for at least a week or two--I'm smart enough to know that if I'm running that badly, it's probably time to step away from the table for awhile.

I won't be playing next weekend anyways--I've got to spend two very long days up in North Vegas dealing another one of those semi-annual free roll tournaments. It's not so bad, except that the money is pretty light and it's a couple of very long days. When dealing a normal tournament, we usually make anywhere from $14 to $25 for every half-hour 'down' we spend in the box (except for one I did a few months ago where I made $86 per half hour! That ain't never gonna be topped). But this is a total free roll with hundreds of players, with no add-ons for staff, the structure makes it a total crap-shoot, and the prize money is extremely top-heavy. So hardly any of the players ever tip out--last time we made just $2.17 per down. Ouch. Between that and the 12-hour days, nobody really likes to work it, so those of us at the bottom of the Extra Board are 'given the opportunity' to deal it every time. Even worse, they do it during the NFL playoffs, and I'd much rather be watching the games instead.

On the other hand, the experience is not as bad as it sounds. The contingent from my casino who get the short straw with me are some of my favorite co-workers, and it's got that whole misery-loves-company vibe to it. And the last two times the house stepped up and gave the dealers an extra $75 per day in combat pay. Additionally, I'm qualified to play in it--I've got an invite--but I never get to since I'm working the whole time. However, they give everyone who busts out a minimum of $75 in prize money--even if you're the first guy knocked out, you get $75--so as soon as my table breaks and I don't have a push, I go out to the prize table, show my ID, they mark my name off the list, and give me the cash. So in addition to my minimum wage, overtime, and whatever tokes we may get, I'll make $225 just for showing up. Not exactly a king's ransom, but it takes a little of the sting out of the two-day grind.

Oh--and the best part? I almost forgot--we get to wear short-sleeves when we work. None of those god-awful long-sleeve polyester shirts. Yay! Seriously, y'all have no idea how nice it is to be able to deal while wearing short sleeves.

So besides that tournament next weekend, my schedule this week will keep from spending any time playing, which, like I said, is probably a good thing right now. The poker gods cannot use me as a plaything as long as I stay away from the table... On the other hand, no Sammi and no smokin'-hot Cuban cocktail waitress who flirts with me just enough to make me think I have a shot... (But they all do that, don't they?)

Anyhow, the coffee is running low, and this apartment ain't gonna clean itself, so I need to get up off this chair and get to work. Once the bathroom is clean and shiny and the living room carpet is vacuumed, I'll probably reward my efforts with bacon. Even a sleepy puppy would wake up for that.


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