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Old School Poker Stories (pt. 2: Wrong Seat)

Today seems like a good day to explain the level of degen I was before hitting my rock bottom. There will be plenty more stories that follow this theme, but this one seems like the perfect window to open first to let you have a view into my craziest, wildest, most fun, darkest, most out of control time of my life.

stoic poker dave janis joplin southern comfort soco
Stoic Poker Dave Relaxing with his Favorite Drink SoCo

Let's go back in time more than a decade. I weigh about 450 lbs. I drink HARD every single day. I do whatever else is around if that is the vibe. I play poker on stake because I have a reputation as a player who is welcomed in every game, a complete lafaggaf (lag af, aggressive af) and someone who LOVES to play super hard against the grinders everyone hates playing with.

Whales love nothing more than watching someone take the 56o to the house against a nitty grinder with a missed gutshot, calmly wait until they fold, then flip over the bluff and fist bump the nearest laughing fun player. They love it so much, they will pay for you to play in their game, even if you have been a bit irresponsible with money management and couldn't put yourself in.

On the day I will tell you about in this post, I had been on maybe a 10-day bender, not super clear in memory tbh. I had woken up with a bit of a shake, which always prompted me to try and get a group together to go to the local breakfast place. I succeeded as always, in a house full of poor young people who know my credit card is going to hit the bill after we order 15 rounds of drinks and a bunch of carb-tastic breakfast food.

We came back to the house around 1pm and everyone wanted to take a nap. I made fun of them for being lame as I took a bottle of Southern Comfort to the couch to continue the party by myself while watching Netflix, if I remember correctly I was grinding my way through Star Trek TNG at the time.

A few hours later, my poker playing roommate woke up and announced he was going to play if I wanted to tag along. I had been partying for about 7 hours now and I wasn't going to turn down a free ride to action. We hopped in his car and headed down to the local casino for some overnight low-stakes poker.

If you have never been broke, but also had a wad of $100 bills in your pocket because of a stake, I don't suggest putting yourself into that absurd situation. But, sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do.

I drank the whole ride to the casino, then I stopped at a bar before sitting at the table, and as soon as I sat I was looking for a waitress. I was ON ONE and winding it down was not an option in my mind.

We play a very splashy few hours, then we see some friends who want to go to a bar and get a drink and maybe some snacks. We decide to get up, leave our chips, and have some fun.

I should clear something up here before going on. At the time we are discussing, I had recently been broken up with by a fiance'. I don't know what happened to my mind when that went down, but I started drinking harder and (after a life of being a very large, very peaceful hippie/punk kid,) I had started bar fighting... A LOT! I don't suggest this method of self-destruction, but at the time it is what my mind chose.

The two people who asked us to go get drinks and snacks were a beautiful cocktail waitress who often came over to the house and hung out, and the lame ass boy she was dating at the time. While we eat we bet on anything we can think of, and eventually the topic comes up of who would win in a fight between me and her new boy. He was a little fella, so I liked my side. Somehow an offer to bet 100 on a fight blurrily becomes an offer of 100 just to fight me... don't ask me man, I was barely there. He declines about 100 times while being called every name I can think of to egg him on.

Eventually, they leave and I go to the bathroom on the way back to the table. My friend was saying his goodbyes/apologizing for me.

I find my way back to my seat and start playing aggressively. I get a few bluffs in a row through and I am glad to be back at my table. All of a sudden, my roommate is standing behind me having a heated discussion with a reg. I look back because I think there might be a real problem, but then they both look at me and start laughing.

They were behind me discussing the fact that I had sat at the wrong seat, and i was playing the reg's chips. He isn't too mad because I made him money. Next thing, that fucking grinder is trying to get us to pay him in order for him to not turning me into the floor and getting me kicked out. My roommate agrees to pay him some small amount and I stand up and say, "Fuck that, kick me out!" They ignore me and send me back to my actual seat.

I couldn't tell you how that night ended, but I woke up at home with more money in my roll than I left home with, and more on my credit card from partying the day before, and the shakes again. I reached around for a bottle that wasn't completely drained. I found one on my bedside table, drank deep, and started another day in the cycle.

Writing this has made me very glad I am not living that cycle anymore. If you want more crazy old stories, or new stoic stories, or anything else having to do with mindset and poker come on back and keep reading. Thanks.


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