Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A road trip (Part 2)

Continuing on from last time, we ended driving up to Canada. Crossing the border back then was a simple "What's your citizenship?" and "Reason for visiting?" and crossing. Nowadays it's more stringent because of 9-11. Anyway we headed to Toronto because my traveling buddy Dexter knew a girl there. The 1st thing I noticed is that Canada had a different set of measurements. It wasn't miles but kilometers (for speed limit) and it wasn't gallons but liters (for gas). As for Toronto it was a big city w/ a diverse group of residents from all ethnicities. I don't remember playing any poker there but I'm sure there are plenty of poker rooms and casinos there.

We headed west towards Vancouver because somehow Dexter had a job interview there. Now Vancouver is in western Canada while Toronto is closer to eastern Canada so it was quite the drive. We decided to drive through the U.S. again because, let's be honest, there aren't as many cities or things to see and do compared to the U.S. Now I want to mention that there are a whole lot of cornfields in America. I know because it seemed like we drove through nothing but cornfields from northeastern U.S. to northwestern U.S.

Anyway when we were driving through South Dakota we noticed a bunch of bikers passing us often. I remember thinking, damn there are a lot of bikers living in South Dakota. It turned out they were all heading towards the annual motorcycle rally at Sturgis, South Dakota. We went ahead and followed the bikers to Sturgis and it was quite the spectacle. There were bikers and girls in leather everywhere. I read they had over 750,000 people attend it in 2000, 2 years after we attended so you can imagine how crowded it was. Sturgis is listed as having a population of 6,400 in 2000 so to say it was crowded is an understatement. Again we were fish out of water. Here we are, 2 young asian guys, surrounded by (mostly) older white guys in black leather riding around on their Harleys. It was a fun time though.

Nearby Sturgis was Deadwood, a small town that allowed gambling. Now if Deadwood sounds familiar, that's because it was a popular HBO series based in Deadwood of the 1870s. It is also the town where Wild Bill Hickok was shot dead holding the poker hand appropriately named after him ,"dead man's hand" aces and eights. Anyway we played some poker there but unfortunately the state allowed a maximum betting of $5 per round so stakes were small.

Along the way we drove through a few different states but I remember driving through Montana because it was a vast land of openness and there was no speed limit. The law was to drive at a speed that was deemed safe, and for us 100mph+ seemed safe to drive at. We zoomed through Montana for that reason but did make a pit stop in a casino in Billings I think. I remember cleaning up in limit omaha 8 while playing vs. a bunch of white people (after all, it is Montana) and thinking these locals have no idea what hit them (literally...wonder if they've ever seen an asian guy in their city before...joke, somewhat).

We drove to Washington and hit up some casinos outside of Seattle before making our way up to Vancouver, Canada. Now once in Vancouver we had a few days to spend before Dexter had an interview (for a job in Dubai of all places). We ended up frequenting local casinos and poker rooms and did well. I believe the biggest games they spread at the time was $10-$20 limit hold'em. Also the conversion rate was 1.5 Canadian to 1 American so the games played smaller. Now if you've never been to Vancouver, I'd recommend visiting. It is a really beautiful city next to the Pacific Ocean. There is so much greenery around (trees trees trees) and it rains quite frequently. I believe Vancouver has the largest Chinatown outside of China in the world so the asian population is pretty big (ah, finally a place I didn't feel like a fish out of water).

Anyway one day Dexter and I decided to head out to celebrate his birthday. We went to a restaurant where we were serviced by 2 pretty waitresses. Dexter was a little smoother than me around girls I have to admit, and he managed to get the waitresses to go out w/ us once their shifts were done. We ended up going to a coffee shop (found out it was the Bread wife answered it when I asked her) and I somehow managed to get the prettier girl to like me by pretty much bs'ing the entire night (jk, I told the truth, mostly). Anyway we decided to meet for lunch the next day at Knight N Day (think a little more upscale Denny's, but Canadian) and almost fell off my chair when I saw her walk in in a mini skirt. I don't want to say it was love at 1st sight (probably lust at 1st sight, technically 2nd sight) but I knew I had a keeper if I could, well, keep her.

Anyway we ended up dating just about every day after that. Dexter had his interview and told me he was ready to go back to Los Angeles to get his things together before heading to Dubai for his new job. He thought we would be driving back together and finish our trip but he would be wrong. I told him I was serious about this girl and gave him money for a flight back to L.A. He wasn't too happy but understood and left w/o me. Somewhat sadly that would be the last time I'd see Dexter in my life. He did take the job in Dubai so I lost touch w/ him.

Part 3 and final part next time...

***Off topic, poker is meh...volume is horrible but I'll be looking to finish strong for the month. Also week 2 in fantasy football was not good. My 3dime team lost the hu match even though I got Michael Vick and started him. I lost all my weekly side bets except one in that league which hurt more. Edog has Mccoy and Best and it was torturous watching that game (Phi-Det) because both guys absolutely went off. It looked like those two were in a Madden game scoring 20+ yd td runs left and right. I also lost again in 1dime and am now befuddled because I thought I had a top 3 team. I still think I do and feel most of my guys have been underachieving so far (Flacco, Fitz, Crabtree, Zach Miller, Brandon Jackson, and getting 4 pts total from my kicker and def). I expect to make a run at the title in that league still. Nickel league was much better as I ended up high man which meant I swept all side bets. Peyton Manning, Best (it sucks to have a guy that conflicts in a diff. league w/ who I have a ton of action w/), Gore, Roddy White, and Pitt def. went off for me. Overall because of my team's lackluster showing in 3dime it was a bad weekend.

I was watching the games at a Buffalo Wild Wings and had my laptop open and my stattracker going (tracks stats of your players and teams) and the BW3 manager walks by and sees that and comments how bad his team is doing then asks me how my fantasy teams are doing. I truthfully reply, "I'm about to lose $10k because of their crappy showing". Obviously he was skeptical but then realized I wasn't kidding when I gave him that "does it look like I'm kidding?!" look. He gave his condolences and went back to his duties of trying to make sure all his customers were happy.


  1. I think Fitz is going to have a bad year, who is throwing to him... I'm guessing you don't actually bet the spread? I had no idea that fantasy football has gotten to be such huge action, but I'm sure your leagues are an annomaly. I probably have over 3k in spread action each week which is probably terribad considering I play .5/1 nl for rent.

  2. Our leagues are not the norm...3dime is a bunch of poker players who are somewhat degens as well..there is one team that has $5k/wk and a $25k total pts bet vs another degeneracy. The nickel league we have $50 or $100 weekly bets vs every team. Most fantasy leagues are played for pride, ours are for entire bankrolls.

    As for betting the spread, I do so from time to time but not for much and not often. Already got enough sweat w/ the fantasy teams as is.