#s 1 through 10:
More details at Dr. Pauly's.
Politically, I'll usually take a northern Republican over a southern Democrat. (John Edwards is a happy exception.) Of the two New York senators, I'd actually rather have Chuck Schumer as President than Hillary. So it seems perfectly appropriate that Schumer's predecessor, brass-balled Alphonse D'Amato, became a lobbyist for the Poker Players' Alliance.
Today's NYT has a good profile of the Senator, noting his hopes of representing something I believe in for the first time since I move to New York (only seven years ago) and the Long Island poker game he plays in regularly with Howard Stern. Expect broad radio coverage.
Poker Player Newspaper columnist Nelson Rose thinks that D'Amato has only a marginally better chance of D'Amato and the PPA prevailing in the near future as I have of turning my last unclaimed 52 cents at Party Poker into a World Series bracelet in triple draw, but here's hoping. Just don't place any money on D'Amato at Betfair (unless you live outside the United Staes and its protectorates).
Last year, I said on the Women's Poker Club forum that if I didn't fix the holes in my poker game, I'd have to take up crochet.
Well, I fixed...some. And I took up crochet anyhow, after mom gave me a starter set last Xmas. So far, I've only made simple projects: a few scarves, a case for my Nintendo DS, a half-finished granny-square afghan, etc.
Last week, I evaluated my bankroll and decided it was time for me to jump up in limits again. I did well in a couple sit'n'gos, then decided to hit the cash Omaha games. Of course, I shouldn't have played when I was upset over Chris breaking my Philadelphia Fire Department Bicentennial mug. Long story short and short story boring, I started too aggressive, tried to capitalize on a loose image but got two big hands cracked badly on the river, then tilted off the rest of a double buyin.
So for the last three nights I've been working on a new scarf I'd had kicking around in my mind for a few months but put off until we finally got some twenty-degree temperatures. Watching the first season of Babylon 5 with Chris, then listening to podcasts after she fell asleep, I put about four hours a night into the double-yarn scarf shown at right.
It's six feet long, counting the fringe, with 21 double crochet per row. I used two skeins of Caron Simply Soft yarn, with both skeins on the size M (9.0 mm) hook from start to finish. The fringe is done with single alternating strands, so there's just a little bit of asymmetry. (One end has pink on the edges with claret between, the other vice versa.) Worn, it rolls halfway around the neck like a collar, then spreads out to protect the whole chest. And oh yeah, it is warm.
I may wear it at the computer even though the radiators in our building get plenty hot at night. It will be a great reminder to be patient next time I'm back at the cash tables.
Happy Hammer Day, minna-san!
February 7, the day on which degenerate poker bloggers celebrate the majickal 2-7 offsuit, is marked this year (2oo7) by the Hammer Day tournament hosted by Al Can't Hang-Dono. I missed the first World Poker Blogger Tour event for a family trip, so tonight's my first blogger tourney of the year. Warui na! Un wo iru!
|音読み: セイ, ショウ
訓読み: ほし, -ぼし
名乗り: n/a, for some reason
Meanings: star; (as suffix) planet; spot, dot, mark
Strokes: 9; Skip # 2-4-5
Deadlines and in-laws: both are, on balance, good for you no matter how much you dread them. More importantly, it's amazing what you can't get done when in their presence. Mosiwake gozaimasen. Welcome back to the experiment. Things are looking up!
Florida, despite its recent population boom and strip-mall sprawl, still has much less light pollution than New York. The night sky is beautiful; I haven't seen so many faint star clusters (星団) with my naked eye in years.
Yesterday, I was able to borrow a bicycle from my in-laws' neighbor and ride around for a while. The sidewalks here are teeming with geckos (守宮) sunning themselves. Only rarely do they have to scramble away from a passing cyclist or jogger; they know how to avoid the car-filled streets pretty well.
I installed a wireless router for my partner's parents a few nights ago, so I could still live the surf/blog/poker lifestyle. My star's been ascendant at Full Tilt this month. I've discovered that the mixed PL Hold'Em/Omaha games are the perfect thing to stave off boredom and keep me from investing too much in horseshoes for donkeys. I've had enough winning sessions and enough variance between the big wins and small losses to work my way back out of the kiddie pool.
The bump up in limits came just in time for me to earn points in FT's 12 Days of Xmas promo, which features cash bonus payouts until New Year's Eve, and could be the quickest way for me to get a bigger plasma TV than I ever expect to need. Much better, I stand a good shot at clearing my deposit bonus before the end of next month.
So, stars. Light of our lives. The character is nice and simple: the top half is the character for sun and the bottom is life (or beer--more in another installment). That bottom character is often pronounced セイ as in sensei, so let that be your handy mnemonic for the day. Tonight, 見上げた夜空の星達の光. Look up and gaze at the light of the stars in the night sky. And while you're still down here, enjoy the video for *Asterisk by Orange Range.
(Readings and definitions from Jim Breen's WWWJDIC.)
訓読み: ねむ.る (v), ねむ.い (adj)
Meanings: sleep; die; sleepy
Strokes: 10; Skip # 1-5-5
Last night, despite having had less than five hours sleep the night before, I sat down for a little Omaha high-low at the kiddie tables on Full Tilt. Plenty of donkeys were at the table working hard to bust themselves out, so I started off tight and a bit more passive than I usually play. After half an hour of getting absolutely junk hands and doing a lot of folding, I finally picked up a decent pot that sent my stack from -5% to +35%.
I went to the kitchen and said to Chris, "I was getting a little sleepy and thinking about quitting, but I just picked up a nice pot." すこし眠い, "a little sleepy," should be one of those great warning signs like ほろ酔い, "a little drunk." But when you actually are a little sleepy, sometimes you forget that. I thought about cashing out, but I didn't want it to look like I was just doing a hit'n'run on the table. No, I ignored Phil Hellmuth's good advice. Bolstered by my win, I kept playing.
About two orbits later, I was in the big blind with a hand I would normally fold: 5c6c7cQd. Three consecutive suited connectors are sucky to hold because you're holding one of your own outs to a straight flush, and that dangling queen was totally useless.
But it was limped around, and I checked to see a flop of 5s6s4c, giving me top two and a straight wrap. すこし眠り, I bet half the pot and unsurprisingly got three callers. The turn came with the two of clubs. What a dreamy card. I've got an inside straight flush draw. The UTG checks to me, I go half the pot again, and the next player re-raises the pot, prompting the other two players in the hand to fold.
すこし眠い, I know he hit his low and utterly fail to notice that the low is a wheel. So when I reraise all in, I'm drawing to three threes in order to take 3/4 of the pot. An 8, 5, 6, or club could get me only half. Damn, the things you recognize after a full night of sleep. The river came with a useless ten, and the other guy got my buyin. A little sleepy became a little broke.
I checked myself into bed, and when Chris came to join me I marvelled at the number of run-on sentences Hemingway stuffed into the first three chapters of A Farewell to Arms. But after eleven pages, I was 昏昏.
(Readings and definitions from Jim Breen's WWWJDIC.)
訓読み: おどろ.く おどろ.かす
Meanings: wonder; be surprised; frightened; amazed
Strokes: 22; Skip # 2-12-10
There's a sequence early in David Levein & Brian Koppelman's screenplay for ラウンダーズ (Rounders) that didn't make it into the finished film. Two side characters, Kenny and Irving, are in the big game with Mike D (before Teddy sits down). On the river, Irving bets out $8,000 and
Call, Irv. Take a suck on these babies--the brass Brazilians.
Kenny turns over a pair of aces.
Aside from being a moment without a principal character, I'd bet the term "brass Brazilians" was silly enough to have made the producers cut that moment. The Japanese translation avoided the Spillainesque slang.
(Call, Irv. A sight to see, ain't they. I got the nuts.)
(Kenny shows two aces in his hand.)
I chose to translate 見て驚くな as "something to see/behold" because I read it as emphasizing the adjective. On the other hand, I believe 驚く見ろう would be a good translation for "Read 'em and weep." If I'm wrong, it's because I'm working hard to gain the Japanese skills of a Kansai third grader. Please feel free to comment with corrections or counterarguments!
Meanwhile, I certainly got a pleasant surprise (驚喜) last night when I was invited to see composer/conductor Darcy James Argue's Secret Society at the Bowery Poetry Club tonight. The Bowery has a small stage, barely twice the size of my bathroom, so I really, really didn't think that they'd manage to fit a 19-piece band onto the platform. But by seating the horn sections in waves during setup, they just managed. And the sound that tightly-packed bunch made could fill the East Village.
The first two compositions, "Ritual" and "Phobos," sounded a lot like Frank Zappa and Lalo Schiffrin, with some Andy Summers influence to the guitar parts. But soon, I stopped listening for influences and just let the "little big band" drag me along for the ride. (That included a piece called "Transit" inspired by the Fung Wah Boston<->Chinatown bus written "before it was gentrified.") Argue's fun to watch, too. His band bears no resemblance to Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra, but when the tempo gets up, he starts to bounce and skank as he conducts. Rae Bob says go see if you're in New York or Boston. In the meantime, check out the Secret Society audio archive to download the songs as they were played at previous shows.
So, with twenty-two strokes of the brush, this blog moves from occasional poker discussion to a daily kanji exploration (but not forgetting the occasional poker discussion). Like it says above, six thousand miles (to Osaka) begins with a single step. Surprise!
Note that 驚 is the second character in "bikkuri," which must
be one of the top 200 words used in anime. "Bikkuri shimashita"
generally means "You startled me" or "I was frightened."
What amazes me is that ~くり is not a reading given for 驚, nor is びく or びつ a reading for 吃 (キツ, ども.る, stammer). It's one of those things you just have to learn, and provides a good reason why びっくり is usually seen in kana.
(Readings and definitions from Jim Breen's WWWJDIC.)
I'm in Boston for the first time in my life this weekend. It's the first time I've been deeper into New England than Amherst (where I got a sadly short-lived kitten many years ago).
There are a bunch of things I've learned for the first time here.
And , although this is more of a national story, the idiot with his finger on the mute button at TBS for the broadcast of Comedy Relief needs to be farking fired. He stepped on all D.L. Hughley's and Dane Cook's punchlines while allowing plenty of curses to get through.
Finally, ESPN's Poker Club is a bloody peep. As in "soft as a marshmallow ____." I've played four O8 sit'n'gos there since signing up last night and cashed in all of them (two thirds and two firsts). If I don't win my way into the WSOP Poker Academy (since there aren't a lot of other ways to win a way into Vegas for a New Yorker anymore), I may be forced to give up the game. At least until a nice new carpet joint opens up in Chelsea.
I do adore a poker site with a sense of humor. To promote the fact theat they're still accepting American players, Bugsy's will have a player named "Bill Frist" playing in Saturday's "Big Stack Bounty" tournament with $500 going to the player who knocks him out. Plus they're offering a 500% bonus on first deposits (min. deposit $50, max $100) until Sunday.
When Bill Frist attached the online gaming poison pill to the SAFE Ports act two weeks ago, a lot of people in the poker world called it Black Friday. Today is worse.
First there was the email I received from DreamPoker saying that users in eleven US states, including New York and Nevada, would be blocked from the site--and unable to withdraw their money--as of 8:30 tonight, Eastern time. (It's reproduced after the jump.) There is no mention of this, of course, on their web page. And since Dream is a Microgaming site, I suspect that their other properties (RoyalVegas, et alia) will be pulling similar stunts.
Then, when I was putting up a post at the Women's Poker Club forums to warn everyone of that fact, since DreamPoker had hosted WPC events, I learned that JetSet Poker had unceremoniously shut down at midnight last night. Nothing was emailed. No notice given. Worse, they had even hosted a WPC tournament last night while I was out trivving with the Samurai Squirrels.
JetSet's website has been replaced by a "closed" notice. The SAFE Ports not only shut Americans off from the site but prompted them to close all accounts worldwide. Goodbye GWoT. Hello Global War on Poker. Somewhere, Osama Bin Laden and James Dobson are dancing together.
Fortrunately, I'd never deposited at Dream, but Jet owes me a check for sixteen and change. If you had money there, send a letter to firstname.lastname@example.org to attempt to get your funds back.