Friday, May 18, 2007

My 7 Things

So thanks to Don-nie, the Uniballer (yeah, that one might stick), you are going to be treated to a bunch of me rattling on about my 7 things. I intended for this to be pretty short, but it wasn’t meant to be I guess. Sorry about that. And with that, I am off…

1. I have never been addicted to anything, with one exception. Yeah, online poker is the only thing I have ever been addicted to. For about a year, that was all I was doing and thinking about. I think it was born out of my hatred for my job at the time. I was not interested in it at all and poker was a welcome distraction. Unfortunately, it did turn into something that I was doing entirely too much, and the rest of my life suffered, but only slightly. It never became a huge deal, but it could have, had I had an addictive personally.

2. I have never had an illegal drug in my life. This one is pretty hard to explain really. I guess I was just always a goodie goodie, or something. It is almost embarrassing that I have never even tried pot in my life, but that is the truth. I was always a pretty responsible, hard working teen. I worked a lot from the time I was 14 years old. I guess I did get a small addiction. It was an addiction to money. I worked in restaurants, on harbor cruise boats, mowed lawns, shoveled driveways. I was into sports. The drug thing just never came up for whatever reason, and I never had a strong urge to try anything.

3. My wife and kids mean everything to me. I do like my job these days, which is always a good thing. The one thing about any job for me, though, is it needs to offer enough flexibility so that I can still do the family thing. I love to coach my kids teams, no matter what the sport may be. Actually, I really like coaching all the kids, not just mine. The problem with coaching your own kid, or at least my problem, is being overly critical and not fully enjoying it. This is another one that is hard to explain, but sometime I wonder if I would be better off not coaching my kids teams. I am really hard on my kids about how they play, practice, pay attention, etc. Much more so than I am on the other kids. I guess that makes sense in some ways, but sometimes I wonder if I am being too hard and they will look back and not have the best memories. A good example is baseball this year with my oldest. He is doing unbelievably well pitching but he can’t hit. He can hit, but he is having a serious mental block at the plate this year and I can’t break him of it. I am constantly harping on him to practice his hitting, but he isn’t that into it. He just says he can’t hit. Our team is 3-3, which is pretty good with the talent we have, but I am not enjoying it as much as I should, because I know how much better my son can do. I know he senses it too, which is a real downer for me. It takes a lot of time and effort to get there each practice and game, and I love doing it. I just hope he is enjoying it as much as he should, since he is doing really well pitching and on the field. Enough about sports for now. More about the family. I have been very lucky in my life so far. We have 3 great boys, our health, and our happiness. Do I sometimes think about what it would be like to live like Don-nie out in Vegas? Yeah, sometimes I do. It is a fleeting thought though, because I know that isn’t me. It wouldn’t truly make me happy. I am a working stiff who does what it takes to make the cash so that my family can do things and have things that make us enjoy our life. I wouldn’t trade it.

4. I am not a fan of politics in general. I don’t pay attention to politicians and what they stand for really. I have my own opinions, and I keep most of them to myself, because they only really matter to me. I will admit I can be swayed on a number of topics when talking to the right person. One thing I don’t like right now though, is this damn war we are in. I spent 8 years in the Mass. Air National Guard as a munitions specialist. I put together missiles for the F-15’s at Otis Air National Guard base on Cape Cod. I did it because my parents weren’t able to pay for my college after my freshman year, and I needed to do something about it. I took a semester off and went to basic training (San Antonio in August, sweet!) and technical school (Denver in October, November) so that I could do the weekend warrior thing, and they would pay for me to go to any state school in Mass. It worked out well for me and I enjoyed it while I was in. Once I graduated from college and started my working stiff career, I didn’t renew my enlistment because I wanted more time for me. On drill weekends, I would be working 12 days in a row and I needed more time with my wife and my first son. I got out and figured I would let some others take over. Little did I know that a war would start only a couple years later and a lot of the guys I was in with, were deployed. The bottom line of all this is, I have an unbelievable amount of respect for our military. Any chance I get to thank a soldier, I take it. You should do the same. They are people just like you and me, but they are tasked with separating from their families for months, even years at a time. A quick story on that. Last Thanksgiving, my wife and I went to New York City for the weekend following the holiday. Just the 2 of us, while the kids stayed with Grandma. We shopped, went to a broadway show, got our hands on a Wii just as they were coming out, ate and drank our asses off. It was great and we really enjoyed it. The second night we were there, we went to dinner at a pretty nice place. It was packed and about halfway through our meal, a family came in and were seated next to us. I saw the son, who was about the same age as my oldest son, grab a seat and then look at Dad and begged him to sit next to him. Not sure why I even noticed, but I did and thought it was cool that the kid wanted to sit with his Dad so much. The place was one of those Brazilian bar-b-que places where they bring meat until your arteries harden or your stomach bursts, whichever comes first. Anyway, you start off by going up and grabbing appetizers from a place in the middle. The older woman with the family came back first and leaned over to us with pride and whispered, “My son just got home from a year in Iraq and we are celebrating”, then she went and sat down. I am not sure why, but her words hit me like a brick in the gut. I almost couldn’t talk to my wife and she could see I was looking weird. All I could think of was the sacrifice that this guy had made, and how much his family had missed him. How much his son had missed him. I was literally choked up. On the way out, I thanked him for what he was doing for us and he thanked me for acknowledging it. As we walked out, I could hear his son say, “Dad, do you know them?” To this day, I wish I had turned back and told the kid that his father was a hero, and that was how I knew him. Please make sure you thank the soldiers and their families if you are ever given the chance.

5. Ok, I need to shorten these up a bit because I need to get working. I have met some unbelievable people through this site and through poker. Even though I am way out of the loop, I still try to get back and catch up on a few blogs when I can. I have played live cards with Jordan, Hoyazo, and Soxlover in NYC. I have met up with Johnny Mac for lunch here in Boston. Last and certainly not least, I have played in tourneys in Vegas with Carmen and Don. I still need to meet a ton of people out there who I know I would get along great with. JJ, Mookie, and Waffles are at the top of the list. Well, Waffles is insane, but I am sure I would get along with him anyway. Just so you know, Don is the real deal. I spent 2 days with him last year in Vegas and I feel like we have been friends for our whole lives. I got the full (present day that is) Don experience where we played in a couple tourneys, I got multiple rides in the $10 van, and I saw him in his element at the NL cash tables. After reading Don’s 7 things, you wouldn’t think we have much in common, but you would be wrong. I can’t wait to get back out there and sit at the tables with him again. As far as Carmen goes, come on now. Who wouldn’t love the woman. I can’t wait to hang with her again as well. My conference at the Red Rock in September can’t come fast enough.

6. As you can assume from my coaching, I am a huge sports fan. I can pretty much get into any sport at all. I am a huge Red Sox and Patriots fan, and sadly enough, I had season tickets to the Celtics this year. I split them with a couple guys so I could bring my kids. That’s my excuse and I am sticking to it. The problem these days in Boston is that you can’t get Sox tickets. Last night my son and I were watching the Sox beat the Tigers…again… and on a foul ball to the left field seats, my son was like, “oh, that is where we sat!”. It was 2 freakin years ago. I literally can’t get into a game for less than $250 for my family, just for the tickets. It would be at least another $150 for food, parking, etc. A $400 day is tough to take when the little one will be bored after the 2nd inning. It pretty much sucks, but what can you do I guess.

7. I miss this space. I am way too busy to keep it up, and I really don’t play poker much anymore at all. As a matter of fact, if you are still reading this, help me out here. I need a new name for this space. Nominations are requested. I will probably try and get something out here every week or 2, but if you have read this garbage this long, you know what I am about anyway, so make a suggestion.

Thanks for tagging me Don. I am not going to tag anyone, since the people that I have been keeping up with have already been tagged. It is good stuff though. Have a great weekend to all!


At 9:16 AM, Blogger SirFWALGMan said...

It is crazy we have not met. I am working in Boston.. in Harvard square! We must meet!

At 10:10 AM, Blogger CarmenSinCity said...

I'm glad you got tagged!!!!! WHEN are you coming back out here?? I remember meeting you and telling Don how surprised I was because you are such a good looking guy. I'm not hitting on you - I'm just saying that in my mind I envisioned the poker bloggers to be - um - well - not that attractive. I was WRONG. Pleasant surprise!!

Bring the wifey next time if possible and then we can all hangout!!

We'll take you to the Red Rock and we can even lay out at the pool because I have a room key compliments of Pauly :)

At 10:15 PM, Blogger jjok said...


At 8:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awesome stuff bro.

We all miss you, but keep doing what you're doing, your kids deserve it.

September we will knock a couple back and throw some dice.

At 10:12 AM, Blogger mookie99 said...

Glad to see you posting again.

I think alot of people enjoy reading you with or without poker content so I hope you continue.

At 11:35 AM, Blogger John said...

hey there ... i'm still kicking around but posting to a 'locked' livejournal account. you still in boston?
i'm also enjoying the kids a lot more these days. we've got softball two nights a week, swimming meet this weekend, and piano lessons for my oldest son. much more fun than work.

At 4:48 PM, Blogger CarmenSinCity said...

Okay, it's been two months since you posted, time for a new one chris!


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