Busy week/ Poker Crackdown
I've been pretty busy the past weeks. Last week, i hosted and ran a charity tournament for an group of young Indian professionals. They had a four table MTT, and wow did those guys love playing poker. They kept on playing until the sun was almost up, and they still wanted to borrow the chipset so they could take it home and keep playing there! Fun game, great people, great food and drinks, great party! Made a bunch of cash to raise funds for the charity they were supporting in the process too.
Played some small games here and there. Still on a bit of a hiatus from poker (i almost only play once or twice a week now) and the times i have been playing, i wasnt rewarded for my lack of practice hehe. Last night at JG's house in Dasma, i kept getting premium hands and hitting the flop, only to get outdrawn or killed by a bigger hand like trips. I flopped top pair/top kicker twice and twice someone had a set! Went all-in in LP after several limpers with 9-9 when i was short and ran into J-J on the BB. Lost all my coin tosses too. I was first to bust out and decided to go jump in the pool and go for a swim nalang hehe!
This week i ran this poker game in Absinth as a part of an event which launched the Antiquary brand of Scotch whiskey. They had a cool set-up where registered participants in the event got 2000 in play money cash which they could exchange for chips and play in the play money 50-100 cash game. If you win enough, you can cash out and "buy" stuff like Cigars, Wine or Whiskey glasses, Money Clips, etc., from the prize booth. Most of the players were new and i even had to sit down with some of them and explain the game while they played, but i would have to say that the poker table was THE highlight of the event! Everyone crowded and watched, and players old and young were playing and haveing a great time. Even the Head Honcho, (who was wearing a Kilt) a genuine Scottish guy, sat down and played. Late into the game, he had murderous intentions of catching this young kid who kept going all-in on him 90% of the time! He called me to his side and whispered "watch me i'm gonna catch this kid! just watch!" hehe.
That event showed how poker really has a mass appeal that can get anybody hooked. There are really no boundaries in the poker table. Age, race, social status, all these things didnt matter. Everyone had a great time and i'm prety sure a lot of those guys will start looking for a game they can play regularly ;).
Moving on to other bigger things, last night while playing a friendly one-table game at JG's house in dasma, we heard the news that two regular running poker games in Makati and Pasig were raided by the NBI. The Makati game was pretty harmless, a very small buy-in SnG format game (and they never play cash games) with mostly young people looking for a good time after work. The Pasig game was supposedly a PPT sattelite game but i believe they run cash games too. Anyway, i heard they were all brought to the NBI office in Manila, but i also heard that they have now been set free after several negotiations. I'm pretty sure they couldnt really find any reason to detain the players, but i dont know what they are going to do about the organizers, if they are pressing charges or not. No details yet really, but i'm sure we'll hear the whole story soon enough.
I would have to say that i sort of have an idea of what they are going through and our prayers go out to them. I hope they resolve the issue as soon as possible. I guess PAGCOR is trying to send a message out there. The only thing i can suggest is for home game organizers to keep it small and private. We have to understand that these games have been running for a long time and are very public about their games. The Makati game even has a private cable channel televising their tournaments.
Maybe soon enough we wont have a need to go to "underground" poker rooms, and have a place where everyone can play poker with peace of mind in a safe and legal environment. We DO have that now in the ACF poker room, but not everyone likes going to the Casino. Till then, we will have to settle for small, private home games.
Again, our prayers go out to those involved. We hope everything works out in their favor.
On a lighter note, i decided that our Poker Blogger Invitational should be postponed until around mid-october, when Gamefrog gets back. That way, we will have a major sponsor on our booze and food haha! Share the wealth, share the love!