Monday, April 28, 2008

Beware: Poker Content within (and more)

I'm up in Cleveland. This is my first time in this city. Just like every other city in Ohio, I hate it. It's cold, dark, rainy, and the traffic sucks. I'm going to spend the next 3 days couped up in this motel room just cause I'm miserable anyway. That is, unless I can score some free tix to The Jake.

I got a new friend request on Facebook, which I don't use very often. I didn't recognize the guy, but saw he was a poker player. It looks like there are a series of tournaments in the area called the E.S.O.P. They run all games, not just hold 'em. I was checking out the website and it looks like they've had HE, Omaha, Razz, Stud, and even HORSE tournies. Awesome! I did also notice one guy that seems to frequent the games. This man is my mortal enemy. Ever since grade school, I've thought of this man as one of the biggest pieces of shit in WV. However, I can look by that fact if I can win his money.

I've messaged the guy trying to get some more info on when all the events are held. I'm eagerly awaiting a reply. Bowling is almost over, so I need something to do. I'm also feeling the itch to play some more poker again.

I also got a reply from the GM of the Princeton Devil Rays wanting to meet with me about possibly working with the team this summer. I plan on setting that all up when I get back in town.

My fantasy baseball team is sucking hard. On Saturday, I had Bedard, Owings, and Hudson starting. Micah sucked and got hurt. Huddy was yanked after 3 innings. Only Bedard got a win. On Sunday, CC Sabathia pitched a gem and got zero runs support for the loss. Then there's Justin Verlander...he decided to remain shitty. So, with only 162 starts allowed in the season, I've pretty much wasted 1/5 of them. I've had only a couple good starts by my pitching staff. I pretty much traded my entire OF to get my supposedly dominant pitching staff: Verlander, Sabathia, Bedard, Dice K, Hudson, Cain, Billingsley. If this pace continues up through the all-star break, I'm going to do some serious trade proposals to the competing team to build my team for next year.

The height of brilliance

Company pays $75 for a tech support call because they are wasting an extra 2 sheets of paper every night on a report they don't need. Wonder how long before they recoup the $75?

And since we are on WVU...

The draft is a prime example of why I have a problem with WVU's coaching..especially now. Rich Rodriguez, although a money hungry douchebag, actually had the program heading in the right direction. We had a shot at the national title. We are getting national exposure too. Then when he left, the school had a chance to really get the program heading forward even faster. But then an emotional decision was made and Bill Stewart was hired. Bill Stewart was the feel good story of the season for WVU. Lifetime assistant coach takes over the team temporarily after douchebag head coach leaves for greener pastures. New temp head coach takes a huge underdog team into a BCS bowl and underdog completely fucks up Oklahoma on national TV. Lifetime assistant turned Interim Head coach becomes new head coach after a single game.

The good thing about Bill Stewart is that he is surrounding himself with some excellent coaches. He knows he is in way over his head, so he's getting all the help he can get. However, the program is taking a step back. WVU really had an opportunity to step up and hire a big name coach. There were some big names on the list too. But they went cheap and emotional and we got Bill Stewart.

This lack of exposure hurts some otherwise talented kids. There are more players on WVU's squad than Steve Slaton and Pat White. One name that comes to mind is Dan Mozes. This man was such a good offensive lineman. He was the reason Steve Slaton and Pat White made names for themselves. Hell, I could have been an all american running behind this guy. Yet, he went undrafted in the 2007 draft. He should have been a 1st rounder. In fact, not a single WVU player was drafted in 2007. That's a fucking shame because there are some big time talents, especially that offensive line.

WVU needs to go forward and not backward. They need some press. This year, look for Noel Devine to have a breakout year and Pat White will be running his way towards a heisman trophy. A good coach would take that press and make his other stars shine as well. I got that feeling though that it's just not going to happen. You're going to ask a non-WVU fan to name some WVU players and they will say Pat White, or maybe Noel Devine, but then they will draw a blank. And that's just wrong.

Owen Schmitt

How does a talent like Owen Schmitt last 5 rounds in this draft? The man is awesome. He's a powerful fullback with some speed. The dude crushes guys. He's dedicated, loyal, and most of all, he's not fragile.

On the other hand, you have Steve Slaton, who would have probably been a 1st rounder after his sophomore year. Then he got fat and lazy his junior year and it showed. He came into the season 40 lbs heavier than his sophomore year. They tried to play it off like it was all muscle, but from my point of view it all looked like it went to his head and ass. He definitely lost a step and became even more fragile. Then he pretty much stunk up the joint at the combine. Yet he went 2 rounds earlier than Schmitt.

Schmitt can run, block, and catch. He would also make a good linebacker as well. Hopefully the Seahawks will see his talents and let the man fuck shit up like he does so well!

Friday, April 25, 2008

I just applied for another job

Good ol' unemployable me just applied for another job. My motivation behind this wasn't money or even replacing my current job. The motivation was for fun. I sent my resume to the local Minor League baseball team, the Princeton Rays. They are a rookie league team here in town. I go to quite a few Rays games every year and I thought it would be fun just to see what kind of jobs they have available.

I would work for them for little to no pay if it was a decent job. I'm not jockeying the concession stand, ticket booth, or cleaning the shitters. However, I thought if they could use some work on their website, maybe do a P-Ray blog, or even being a scorekeeper, I could help out. I'm going to be at nearly every home game this year anyway.

We'll see how it goes. I don't really have any expectations of landing a position, but if they do have something fun available, then I could get my foot into the door for working for Major League baseball or one of the teams.

Across town, we have the Bluefield Orioles too. I hate the stadium over there and don't go to many games at that field, but I wouldn't be opposed to working for them if the P-Rays don't have anything available.

I am also going to be checking out positions available at other franchises around the country starting with the Atlanta Braves. I really like the Minor League circuit, but I'm assuming MLB is where the money is at. I figure if I gotta be a working class monkey, why not have fun with it?

The best part about this whole process is that I don't really care if I land a gig or not. If I do get something, it will be for slave wages. So I can be picky about what I want to do. If all they have are positions wearing chicken costumes, cleaning the shitters, or shagging fly balls, I'll leave that to the kids.

Wish List

Remember the good old days, back before everyone and their dog had a blog? Remember when cam whores would flash a little skin so some perv would buy them a gift off their wish list they had posted on the website? I'll show some nipple if anyone wants to buy me some of my wish list stuff:


  • Digital Camera - I've had 2 in the last 3 years. I lost one, so I bought a new one. Then I found the old one, but lost the new one. Now the old one is broke and I have none!

  • LCD Television - I'm looking for something between 42-46". I don't even have cable TV anymore, but I still want a LCD TV so I can play games, watch DVDs, or even play poker in style.

  • PS3 + MLB: The Show - Enough said. All other baseball games < MLB: The Show

  • Sub Amp for my truck - My other sub amp burnt up and now I have nothing to replace it with. The once awesome stereo system now sounds anemic without the subs pounding a hole in your chest.

  • New Rims for the truck - I need some new rims because mine are in bad shape. The, in turn, makes a nice looking truck look dirty all the time. I actually bought a new set of rims a while back, but ended up getting the wrong ones. I returned them and never bought anymore after that.


It's a short list, but an expensive one. Maybe one day I'll buy some of these items. Until then, they are just flashy widgets that I don't need.

Doggies

In a little over 8 hours, I'll be heading to the dog track. I know! Not even 24 hours after posting about financial woes, I'm posting about spending a night blowing money on slot machines and greyhounds. It's really not as bad as it sounds though. I'm being staked.

I went straight home yesterday after work. My intensions were to work on my push mower (change oil, air filter, etc) and mow the front yard. When I got home, the temps were around 80 degrees and my body hasn't adjusted to that yet. It was hot and I was sweating. I walked into my A/C cooled house and it felt so good. I figured I'd just wait out the heat a bit and mow later. So I ordered up a pizza from my favorite pizza joint and fired up some Entourage on the computer and started watching from the beginning again.

My parents ended up showing up after about 30 minutes. They brought me some supper, but I had pizza on the way. So I declined the supper. My parents ended up eating some of the pizza with me because the Angelos pizza is so awesome. They then helped me work in the yard.

My Dad was telling me that him and Mom were going to the dog track today. He wanted me to come. I told him that I just didn't have the money right now. He offered to give me some gambling money to play with. I didn't really want to do that, but they convinced me. So, I'm driving up to Charleston directly from work this afternoon and meeting them up there. We'll probably hit up a nice restaraunt and then gamble the night away. I plan on betting on several races and then just donking around on the penny machines while I watch the doggies run.

I really just need to get out of town. This week has kicked me in the junk and next week isn't shaping up any better with a trip to Bum fuck Ohio on tap for Monday thru Thursday. This means I will miss bowling and the roll-off for the 2nd half champions. That really sucks. Tonight will give me a chance to get away and forget about all the hardships that I've put up with this week.

My parents will be staying the night in Charleston at my aunt's house. I was offered a free bed to sleep in, but it's only a 1.5 hour drive from the dog track to my house, so I'll just drive back home tonight.

I'm not sure what I'll do with the rest of my weekend. I'm tossing up between going out on the town to watch some live music or trying to get some fellas together for a poker game.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Financial Woes

I gotta tell you, I picked the wrong time to try on work on having a positive outlook on life. The world around me is taking shots at me and most are connecting. I'm almost down, but not out.

My latest struggle is with money. I'm running bone dry right now until next week. The problem is that I have a trip to Ohio scheduled next week. 6 hours of driving + 3 nights in a motel + food is way > than the cash I have on hand at the moment. I'm not really sure what to do.

I decided to use some of my poker money to get me through. Great idea! Except I get an email from Full Tilt telling me that due to technical difficulties beyond their control, the withdrawl will be delayed 3-5 days. Awesome!

The last thing I want to do is live off a credit card for the business trip. But this might have to happen. I hate the way they schedule these trips. I get paid once a month. Of course, I get scheduled to travel at the end of the month when funds are low. To top all of that off, the boss people do payroll using our software (which supports Direct Deposit), yet they refuse to do direct deposit with us. So I'll still be out of town when my paycheck arrives in my mail with no way of depositing it to alleviate this mess I've gotten myself into. The reason we don't have direct deposit? That would require the 2 owners which are former husband and wife to communicate with each other.

Hopefully next month, none of this will be a problem. I'll have my refinancing out of the way so there's no more renovations coming directly out of my pocket. I've bit the bullet and bought a mower. Plus I've cut out several hundred dollars worth of expenses.

I'm so ready to give a big fuck you to April.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The war on drugs

I have a friend that is a cop and part of the local K9 unit. Frequently, the police department is boasting in the paper about all these big busts. 9 times out of 10, it's a marijuana bust. The department also severely overvalues the pot plants they confiscate so the headlines look great. Seize one plant and you get something like "$10,000 in marijuana off the streets". That's a big fucking plant!

I give my friend a hard time about his job because I feel it's meaningless. For one, they go after marijuana most of the time. Hardly ever do you hear about them busting a pill distributor. But even if they would do that, they are wasting their time.

His argument is that he's getting scumbags off the streets and in jail. My argument is that most of the time these guys are scumbags. But what makes them scumbags? I think the only thing that differentiates a drug dealer from a car salesman is the fact that a drug dealer's wares are illegal. If you legalize drugs, what have you done? You've turned a dealer into an entrepreneur.

My point of the whole argument with him is that we are just wasting billions of tax payers' dollars to get these people off the street. If we would just legalize the drugs, you would put the shady dealers out of business and the actual honest dealers would probably convert over to being legit sellers of the product, therefore helping out our economy.

Do you realized how much money we would save if Drugs were legal? How about this, do you realized how many extra tax dollars would make it's way to the government if drugs were sold legally (and taxed)? Let the abusers, abuse themselves. They can help thin the herd while our economy booms. Quit ruling Americans with the Bible and a lot of good things can be made from shady practices.

It's kind of like a sick joke...

I try to be a positive person and see the good in people. However, when I decide to do all of this, the world seems to want to test me. Yesterday was going good and then about 30 different stress inducing problems came up at 1 time. Surprisingly, none of them had anything to do with work. I'm still gonna be positive, even if it fucking kills me.

Oh, and I've noticed an alarming trend lately. Why can't anyone on any of the social networking sites spell? I get such a kick out of how they have to update their status lines every time they wipe their ass, but come on... AT LEAST SPELL THE SHIT RIGHT!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Positive

I guess you've noticed the content of this blog has shifted a bit. I've gone from poker content to baseball content to "what the fuck is he writing about now?" content. I'm not sure if this is good or bad from a reader's standpoint. My traffic volumes are low compared to many blogs out there and my reader base might be more fragile than others. The fact though is that I do this blog for me. And if someone is entertained in the process, wonderful!

Over the next few months the blog will contain less and less poker content, but more and more positive life aspects. I'm working on being a better person in life. I'm cutting out all the poisons that have affected me in the past such as alcohol, drugs, television, overall negativity, fast food, and even the people that bring me down.

Over the next few months, hopefully you will notice a change in the attitude of this blog. Instead of having a morbid, negative feel, hopefully all my writings will be more positive and motivating to my readers.

The truth is that I get depressed every winter. This winter seemed particularly hard with my struggles with money, poker, and living out of my comfort zone. I coped by locking myself up in the house feeling sorry for myself. I always wondered when something bad happened, "Why me?". It's easy to see why me. I didn't do anythign to help myself. I just sit around waiting for something to happen.

Here are my goals I want to accomplish by summer's end:

- Completely kick the fast food habit and lose 40-50 lbs.
- Be completely sober, alcohol and drug free and this includes nicotine
- Exercising regularly
- Have a positive outlook on life

I feel that if I can just make my life more positive and I take more of a pro-active approach to anything I try, then I will do well in life. This includes my poker game, investing, even my golf and bowling game!

I've realized over the past few months that the mind is a very powerful thing. If you can control your mind, it can control your life. If I go into every day with a negative mindset, then negative things will happen. If I just dont' allow my mind to focus on the negatives such as the nicotine withdrawls or whatever, then I won't really even notice. I have to be strong.

No TV Day 1

You never realize how many hours are in a day until you live life without television. Sure television can be useful, but more and more it is sucking the life out of Americans, myself included. I thought long and hard about the decision to get rid of TV. I had to ask myself, "What good does TV bring to my life?". The only answer was entertainment. However, lately, that isn't the truth. There really isn't anything interesting on TV. Here's what I'm missing out on:

Mondays: ???? never watched much TV on Mondays
Tuesdays: American Idol (sucks) and Hell's Kitchen (douchebag yelling at wannabe cooks for an hour)
Wednesdays: Ultimate Fighter and DEA (which I throughly enjoy and will continue to do so thru the magic of the internet
Thursdays: Lost (tough to lose this one, but ABC.com carries all the episodes)
Fridays: don't watch much TV on Fridays
Saturdays-Sundays: Sporting events (I have mlb.tv now)

As you can see I didn't watch a whole lot of TV throughtout the week, but it was a constant distraction. Cutting out just those few shows saves me at least 6 hours a week. Add a sporting event and we are talking 10 hours a week in front of the tube.

Yesterday was my first TV free day. I coped fairly well because I don't normally watch anything on Mondays anyway. Tonight, on the other hand will be a test. I don't mind missing American Idol because it's at that point now where the show is monotaneous. They choose a terrible performer and then idolize that performer while the contestants sing bag cover songs written/performed by the chosen performer. Hells Kitchen is also the same thing over and over. Here's a summary of the season so far: "YOU CAN'T FUCKING COOK AND I CAN SCREAM LIKE THIS FOR THE ENTIRE HOUR!"

It amazed me yesterday how much extra time there seemed to be in the day. The TV wasn't even turned on as a distraction when I walked by. I just worked on my chores and went along on my daily routine. Once my daily routine was done, then I had plenty of time to kill before bed time.

I can see where the lack of TV will benefit me in life. For one, I have freed up maybe 10 hours a week that can be converted to productive hours. Maybe I'll allocate a few of those hours to exercise and a few to poker. The possibilities seem endless. I have extra time to work in the yard (which I have been thoroughly enjoying lately), work on the house, hang with friends, work on a side project, go for a walk, etc, etc, etc.

You ever have that person tell you that they just haven't had time to do whatever it was they were supposed to do? Well, maybe suggest to that person that getting rid of the television in the home creates time. I know I'm one of those people always running around saying "I haven't had time" or "I've been so swamped". Truth be told, I have plenty of time, I've just been wasting it.

This is what I deal with every day

Here are a chain of emails for a tech support incident I did yesterday:

From Customer:

Guys,


I loaded a new vendor price file import into the catalog file, I had it add a prefix to the stock number for inventory but forgot to add to catalog part number. Can you tell me how I can fix this to have the prefix put on the catalog items or can I delete this file as these items have not yet been used.



Thanks

XXXXX

XXX@XXX.com

-----------------------------------

Reply From Me:


XXXXX,

If you go into the Catalog File Maintenance program, you can click on the File --> Delete All Items for Vendor... option. Then you would put that vendor's Short Name in the box. This will delete all the items out of the catalog for that vendor. Then you can run the price import again and put them back in there with the appropriate prefix.


------------------------------------

Reply From Customer:


this did not work – see the attached screen prints

------------------------------------

From Me:


XXXXX,

When you tried this, what did you type in for the Vendor? Did you use the vendor number or the short name? You should make sure you type in the vendor short name exactly like it is set up. In this example, it looks like you should be typing in "PRECI" as the vendor short name to get rid of those items.

Thanks,
Me

------------------------------------

From Customer:

Using the vendor short name worked. I wish you would have told me about this earlier instead of me wasting time using the regular vendor number. None the less I have it working now.

------------------------------------

Wishful reply from me:

Dear XXXX,

Read the first fucking email I sent you douche bag!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Welcoming another big time pitcher to the lineup

I just got an email from my league. It was a trade offer. Straight up CC Sabathia for Josh Hamilton. I insta-accepted it. Now let's hope it's voted fair. And then lets hope Sabathia is done sucking for the season.

No more TV and summary of expenses I've cut

I no longer have cable television. I just found out that I didn't have to be subscribed to cable TV to be able to get cable internet. Super duper! That answers all my problems. Now, the hard part will be living without TV!

I don't think it will be too difficult considering I don't really watch TV that much anyway. The hardest part will be when the college football seasons arrives and then the MLB post season. I'm good for the summer as I have MLB.tv to keep my occupied.

Any shows that I want to watch, I can see through "other means". I might set aside a cable bill fund. I can take the $70/month I'm saving right now and put that towards a new LCD TV. After a year or so, I should be able to get a nice one with all the money I saved.

Expenses I've cut this month:

- Cable TV : $70
- Richdad Subscription: $10
- Netfilx subscription: $9
- Credit Card Payment: $200-250
- HELOC payment: $115
- Payment on appliances: $200
- Line of credit: $200

That's around $800 of expenses that I've cut in a single month. However, my mortgage payment will go up a bit. I expect it to be in the $550 range, but I'm not sure of the exact figure yet. I need to do some insurance shopping now that I'm 30 years old and have been out of my parents house for a few years. Things might be much cheaper these days for me in that department too!

The best thing about all of this is that my brain has been reprogrammed over the past year. Instead of seeing that as $800 in money that I can spend on toys every month, I now see it as $800/month that can get invested and collect interest and ultimately get me out of cubicle hell!

Scraping by

I'm having a difficult time making ends meet towards the end of this month. I spent all my money on this month on bills, food, GAS, and stuff to work on the house. Not to mention I just dropped $3000 on a lawn mower! The only things I have actually bought for myself this month are some guitar strings, some picks, and a $14 blender.

My checking account shows -$21.00 in it right now. I have transfered some savings money over and I have another transfer going in that is taking for-fucking-ever! That will help me scrap by to get to the end of the month. I have a trip scheduled for next week and I'm hoping to have enough money to get through that trip. Then I get a nice fat expense check and my paycheck at the same time. However, this time, it's different.

There are a few subscription based services that I got rid of, saving me a few bucks. Bowling will be over which will save $20-30/week. I also will not have to pay a credit card bill, nor any other loan payments. All I have are house payment, electricity, insurance, TV/Internet, cell phone, and water bills. These will total about $1000/month all together.

As gas prices rise and rise, I've considered putting my truck up for sale. I could probably get $10-12K out of it. It's a very nice truck and has $2000 worth of stereo in it (minus a blown sub amp). I can barely afford to keep gas in the thing right now with prices shooting towards $4/gallon. The last time I filled up the truck was a few weeks ago and it run me $73.50. Since then, I just put in $30 at a time and it gets me to almost 1/2 a talk. Just terrible if you ask me.

My car, on the other hand, gets 2 to 2.5 times the gas mileage and only costs about 1/2 as much to fill up. However, it has 165K miles on it. I don't really have any problems with the car other than keeping it clean.

I really hate that I'm a slave to the motor vehicle. They are getting too expensive to own these days, yet we MUST have them to get by in life. That's the case in my area where there is no public transportation and it's common to have a 45-50 mile commute to work. If it were any way possible, I'd never drive again. Driving is dangerous, expensive, and just an overall burden on my life.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do right now. I'm anxious to see how May treats me financially. I've cut some expenses this month. I figure I'll save $600-650 this month on the expenses that I've cut out. So all this might just be a moot point. $600 is a lot of money. This is sort of my own economic stimulus package.

---

One other thing I forgot to mention is that I'm currently working on trying to get rid of my cable bill. I'm looking into various internet options that do not require me to carry television.

Turbo Sunday

Yesterday was a super quick day. It seems like it was over before it started. I usually experience these types of days when I sleep very late or I'm sick or something. However, yesterday I was up at 8:00 a.m. I pretty much stayed busy the entire day and I guess that's the reason why.

I got up early, intending to mow while the church crowd was off to the temples. I didn't want everyone in the neighborhood watch me mangle my yard or myself with my new zero turn radius mower. However, mother nature didn't cooperate and I had to wait it out a few hours so the ground would be dry enough. In the meantime, I started doing the laundry.

While doing laundry, I caught the first part of Major League. I've seen that movie 100 times in my life and although a decent baseball flick, it gets worse and worse each time. I saw that the Braves were going to be on TV, so I ditched the 2nd half of the movie in favor of mowing grass. I was thoroughly impressed with my first mowing performance on my new toy.

After that, I had enough time for a shit, shower, and shave, and a couple innings of the Braves game before my parents showed up to take me out to eat lunch. We went to Hinton to a new BBQ restaurant. The place (which I can't remember the name) overlooked the New River. It was quite beautiful. The food was fairly good. I had a pulled pork platter with baked beans and roasted red skin potatoes. The pork was awesome. The beans were great. And the potatoes were meh. They had a texture sort of like potatoes you would get from a frozen dinner. I won't get them again when I go back.

Once we headed back home, I had to go to Wal-Mart to pick up some groceries, a blender, and some lawn mower oil. I managed to leave there with almost everything I need. Every time I go to that forsaken place, I swear I'll never go back. Yesterday was no exception. I spent the entire time in the store trying to get dumbasses to get out of the fucking way. Honestly, you have a buggy which barely fits down the aisle. Then you have another buggy coming the other way. Let's just stop our fat asses right here in the middle and carry on a conversation. Fuck the world around us...let them figure out another way around. One fucking guy was looking at salad dressings and kept backing up to see the selection. I stopped to see what his next move was. I then let out an "excuse me" to announce my presence and suggest he get the fuck out of the way. I thought I got an acknowledgement from him until I walked by and he backed his nasty ass up into me. He apologized. I refrained from cussing him. I would have liked to beat the idiot over the head with his salad dressing.

I got home from Hell-Mart and unloaded all the groceries. I made my first smoothie and by the time everything was said and done, it was 8:30 p.m. I settled down on the couch and flipped between Napolean Dynamite and the Mets/Phils game. I didn't make it through the entire game. I hit the sack and fell asleep almost instantly. I remembered waking up around 1:00 a.m., but falling back asleep again almost instantly. Then the next thing I remember was alarm clock to start off Monday....ugh.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

My first smoothie/shake

I bought me a blender just a bit ago and some various fruits. For my first test run with the blender I went with a chocolate banana shake/smoothie. I'm not sure what the difference between a smoothie and a shake is (assuming there is one), but that thing I made...AWESOME!

I think this will be my breakfast most mornings. We'll see how long I can continue to keep the thing clean.

25 Minutes



I finally broke down and bought a lawn mower yesterday. It was the most important thing on my agenda. I didn't want to spend a whole lot of time shopping as I have looked around plenty. I knew basically what I wanted and now it was up to the stores to sell it to me. I went with a small local shop that services their own products as opposed to Lowes or Home Depot. There wasn't much price difference plus this guy was nice enough to help me learn to drive the thing (hah!) and even filled it up with gas and delivered for me.

Once I got home, I was nervous. I tried to wait until there were no neighbors visible so I could go play on it. I started off badly. The damn thing was impossible to steer and I was scared to death I was going to send it over the mountain. After my first test drive in my own yard (with the blade up so I could just drive around), I came to the conclusion that this was how I was going to die...chewed up and spit out by a lawn mower. It's a mean looking sucker.

After I figured out a little bit of turning maneuvers and handling of the mower, I was ready to give it a try for real. Unfortunately, mother nature was not cooperative and started dumping rain on me. I gave up and went back inside, worried to death that I made a bad decision. What good is this $3000 piece of equipment if I can't control it?

This morning, I woke up to try the mowing thing again. Unfortunately, it had been raining during the night too, so the ground was wet. The dude at the store told me that I should do my first mow on completely dry grass because it will just look like a cleaner cut. I waited a bit and had almost written off today as a day to work on the yard. Then around 11:00, I said "Fuck it". No test drives without the blades down. Get out there and use the damn thing.

I started out slow. It took about 10 minutes of mowing and then I got the hang of it. After 15 minutes, maneuvering the machine was almost 2nd nature.... as long as I was going forward. It's hard to make your brain learn how to stop one of the machines. When you spend 15 years hitting a brake pedal to stop something, you're not used to just letting go. After all was said and done, I had my back yard mowed in under 25 minutes. I was pleased with my purchase after that.

I started out worried to death someone would be watching my dumb ass trying to maneuver the machine, but after a few minutes I was like "Yeah! Look at me!".

Friday, April 18, 2008

Good times with good friends

Tonight is an exciting night. It's going to be our first bonfire of the year. I'm stoked because I got reason to celebrate. I am now out of the debt cycle and don't plan on getting back into any bad debts any time soon. It's all about getting out of the rat race now. So now big screen TVs, no new guitars, no new bowling balls, Playstations, whatever. I will remain disciplined and continue to pay myself first. Sure, I'll still buy toys for myself, but with cash only and only after every other affair has been taken care of first.

Anyway, back to tonight, we have several people that should be there. The weather is going to be nice. I am just going to enjoy the night and the good times. There's always drinking, some BS getting tossed around. We cook weiners and marshmallows over the fire. Spook usually serenades us with drunken songs he made up because when he's drunk he can't remember the words to anything else, however he won't be there tonight. But there will be many more fires to come.

Tonight kicks off my new lifestyle. The new me! Out with the bad, in with the good me. I'm going to enjoy the night and then get started in the morning bright and early. I have to buy a new lawn mower, get my hair cut, and change the oil in both vehicles. The new me gets shit done.

-----

Things I plan on doing this weekend:

Friday night:
o Grocery shop (stuff for bonfire and groceries for me)
o Buy a blender
o Bonfire

Saturday:
o Purchase a riding mower
o Get haircut
o Begin yard work

Sunday:
o Probably finish up yard work
o Relax with some baseball

At some point over the weekend, I want to get a bottle of wine or 2. It's cigar season and I figure a good wine should go pretty well with a tasty cigar. I don't want to get anything really expensive. I'm interested in more bang for the buck. I'm not a big fan of alcoholic drinks, but some of those wines looks just too damn good!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Small Business > Big Business

I love it when small businesses get pushed around by the corporate giants and fight back. This particular company pretty much made the folks at Monster Cable look silly. No matter how this turns out, I like this guy!

http://www.audioholics.com/news/industry-news/blue-jeans-strikes-back

Smooth....ie

Google is telling me that it is now 84 degrees today. Awesome! Time to break out the lawn chairs, the grill, and throw on some steaks! The other night I was playing some games with friends and my friend made me a smoothie. It had a concoction of different fruits in it, but damn was it good! It was like the ultimate warm weather drink.

Then I was reading Dr. Pauly today and he was talking about a chocolate banana milkshake he's been making. I love fruit, bananas being my favorite. I also love chocolate.

I think I'm going to try making some of my own smoothies. I have checked out various recipes on the net and after review, it looks like all you do this throw various things in a blender with some ice cubs and blend until smooth.

I'm going to go to the store and get a bunch of bananas, some strawberries, kiwi, blueberries, some ice cream, milk, vanilla, and whatever else looks like it could be tasty in a smoothies. Then I will experiment with the different concoctions to see what I like best. I'll probably also steal several recipes from the internet.

LOL, oh yeah... I need a blender too.

The Dice Man


I just made the first blockbuster trade of the season in our Fantasy League. I feel pretty awesome about the trade and I feel like I'm getting the better end of the deal by a long shot. The trade:

I get: Daisuke Matsuzaka, Matt Cain, Dustin Pedroia (Farm), and Adam Lind (Farm)

Other team gets: Ben Sheets, Roy Oswalt, Daniel Cortes (Farm)

I have until 9:30 p.m. before it's official. The other owners can veto the trade and one has already voted to veto it. However, 3 of the 8 teams must veto before 9:30 and I don't think that will happen, but you never know.

Of course, the centerpiece of this trade is the Dice Man. He's a pitching machine, fairly young, and exciting to watch. Matt Cain is probably the best pitcher in the National League that can't win 12 games in a year (because the Giants are horrible), but I can start him when there is a favorable matchup. I will leave Pedroia on the farm for a while or use him as trade bait because I have Robinson Cano who is just a pure hitter when he gets warmed up (never hit below .298 in his career).

I'm starting to love my pitching:

- Erik Bedard (15 Day DL right now, but a strikeout stud)
- Justin Verlander (The tigers have started to win a few)
- Tim Hudson (got beat up a bit last night, but solid the rest of the year)
- Daisuke Matsuzaka
- Chad Billingsley (young guy with good stuff)

I also have Micah Owings locked up on the bench because of the tear he's been on this year and Homer Bailey waiting on Cincy to give him the call or better yet, trade him.

I moved up a spot in the standings last night, but now that I'm happy with my lineup, I'm ready to move up to the top!

Appraised

Well, the appraiser just left my house and early guesstimates put the value of the house in the $130,000 range. This was pretty much the number I was hoping for. Anything over that would be gravy. I told the appraiser, I wanted him to get it as high as possible so I can finish all the work on the house and be a virtually debt free man. It's looking now like that will be the case.

After all is said and done, I will have around $90,000 invested in the house. So we are looking at somewhere around $40K in equity. I'm happy with that. I still have a few projects around the house too. I have had some estimates to rebuild my porch. So far, I've been told that concrete is my cheapest option right now. The only concrete estimate I've had is $6500 and the same size porch made of wood supposedly will run about that much just in materials. I'm getting some other quotes though because I find that hard to believe.

Other than the porch, I still need carpet. I'm going to get new carpet in the downstairs bedroom (which will be my office), in the den, the living room, and the bedrooms upstairs. However, I am going to get some quotes for hardwood floors upstairs and compare that to carpet.

Lastly, but definitely not least is the upstairs bathroom. It needs completely overhauled. I want ceramic tile and a walk in shower with no tub. I also want a pedestal sink. I have everything laid out in my head how I want it, but it isn't going to be cheap. I might save that project for next year.

This summer will be spent working on the exterior of the house. As I mentioned before, the main project will be rebuilding the porch. However, I also need to do some landscaping (which I intend to start doing this weekend), and price some outbuildings (buying vs. building). I'll be buying a new lawn mower this weekend most likely and ripping shit loose on it :) I am going to check on one this evening though that supposedly a great deal (used).

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Out with the bad, in with the good

I'm improving my life. Spring is here and summer is around the corner. These are my 2 favorite seasons of the year. I feel more alive during Spring and Summer than any other time. The seasons bring new hope for me. Unfortunately, I usually end up wasting them on a couch under the air conditioning trying to figure out "What's there to do?"

I get progressively worse every year. The good months fly by and I wasted them with minimal golf play and more loafing than before. The reason things get worse and worse for me is that I let too many negative aspects into my life. I guess it's just a chance to rebel against the system or me trying to sew my wild oats. There are a few people that I've been dealing with on occasions. When you step back and think about it, they are scum. They might seem like good people on the surface, but just standing back and taking a look at the things they do and how they act, it's just not the type of people I would want myself or my friends to be around. Fortunately, there are only a couple of these people in my life and it won't be so hard to cut ties with them.

It's not just people either. I let many negative things influence my life... over my years on this planet, I've been negatively influenced by alcohol, drugs, tobacco, gambling, etc. Then I wonder why my life sucks so much. I just let all these negative influences come into my life and before I know it, they consume me. They define me as a person. "Why me?" I always ask. Well, I'll tell you why. I bring it all on myself.

Over the course of this year, I'm going to strive to be a better person. This means that I have to cut out these negative influences in my life. The bad people that only bring me and my friends down have been cut. Anything that makes my life worse has to go. One by one, I need to replace that negative influence with a positive one.

For example, I can cut out nicotine and replace that with something positive such as exercise or fishing. I refuse to believe that I can't quit dipping snuff. I refuse to believe that I'm stuck forever as a slave to the tobacco companies and even worse the government that collects all those taxes off my tobacco purchases. Tobacco does not positively affect my life in the least little bit. Although it does have several negative effects. It has to go.

One by one, I need to identify all the negative influences in my life and just rid them from my world. These influences bring me down, make me sad, make me angry, cost me money, hurt my friends, and just pretty much has a negative effect on my karma. I'm a good person and I don't need all these negatives. So I'm cutting them out.

**Footnote**

Gambling does not = poker. Poker is not gambling in my book. However, slot machines, sports gambling, etc are things I lose at consistently and should go. Poker has actually had a positive influence on my life.

Table Selection

** Hand # 1969281656 starting - 2008-04-16 08:41:51
** Tell Me Why [Hold 'em] (1.00|2.00 Fixed - Cash Game) Real Money

gambler959 sitting in seat 1 with $41.13
PEARLHARBOR sitting in seat 2 with $572.27[Dealer]
SRVaughan sitting in seat 3 with $32.66
niraB sitting in seat 4 with $59.19
KEEFFF sitting in seat 5 with $119.94
orig456 sitting in seat 6 with $98.15
SRVaughan posted the small blind - $0.50
niraB posted the big blind - $1.00

** Dealing cards to SRVaughan: Jd, Js
KEEFFF folded
orig456 folded
gambler959 folded
PEARLHARBOR called - $1.00
SRVaughan raised to $2.00
niraB raised to $3.00
PEARLHARBOR called - $3.00
SRVaughan raised to $4.00
niraB called - $4.00
PEARLHARBOR called - $4.00

** Dealing the flop: 5c, Jc, 3c
SRVaughan bet - $1.00
niraB called - $1.00
PEARLHARBOR raised to $2.00
SRVaughan raised to $3.00
niraB called - $3.00
PEARLHARBOR raised to $4.00
SRVaughan called - $4.00
niraB called - $4.00

** Dealing the turn: 5h
SRVaughan bet - $2.00
niraB called - $2.00
PEARLHARBOR raised to $4.00
SRVaughan raised to $6.00
niraB called - $6.00
PEARLHARBOR raised to $8.00
SRVaughan called - $8.00
niraB called - $8.00

** Dealing the river: Kd
SRVaughan bet - $2.00
niraB folded
PEARLHARBOR raised to $4.00
SRVaughan raised to $6.00
PEARLHARBOR raised to $8.00
SRVaughan called - $8.00
PEARLHARBOR shows: 10c, 4c
SRVaughan shows: Jd, Js
SRVaughan wins $61.00 from the main pot

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

I was born a rambling man

I'm just going to ramble on here for a bit. I'm retiring for poker for the summer. As much as I try to keep playing throughout the spring and summer, I can't do it. It is at the point where I'm having to force myself to play. I'm having a terrible time working up the motivation to clear some of that bonus on Eurolinx.

I'm finally getting a haircut. I was going through this hippie phase and was going to grow my hair a little long. However, there's just too much maintenance involved in not making it look like Billy Bob from the back woods. Thursday evening, I'm buzzing this bitch.

Life has been pretty decent lately. I had fallen into a downward spiral there for a while (seems like the same thing every winter). However, I let some negative influences in my life. I've decided to just cut out these people completely because they offer nothing good to my life and I offer nothing good to theirs. If I keep cutting out all the bad stuff in my life, then my life has to be good, right? Seems logical.

I get my appraisal on my house finally this Thursday at 11:00 a.m. I'm excited and nervous at the same time. I got a big fat Monte Cristo White cigar waiting on the hopefully good news.

I should own a new zero turn radius riding mower this Saturday. I think I'm going with the Cub Cadet, although I haven't counted out John Deere or Husquvarna either. All I know is that it's going to hurt the pocket book a bit. Every time I save up for that new TV I want, something new comes along and takes it away.

Oh and happy tax day. For you dumbasses struggling to get all your paperwork done and filed before the deadline, just remember, there is a solution to all this madness. The Fair Tax plan.

Overmanaging

I've been severely over-managing my fantasy baseball team the first few weeks of this young season. Last year, most of my guys got off to par to above par starts. However, this year has been different and I'm getting impatient.

Robinson Cano has been cold as ice, Victor Martinez has been struggling with a hammy problem, Jimmy Rollins dealing with his ankle, Eric Bedard his hip, Roy Oswalt and Chad Billingsley are just dealing with the fact that their teams will never give them run support, Justin Verlander....ugh..I don't even want to discuss Detroits problems right now. It just seems like the list is endless.

I've been frantically trying to make a trade. I'm especially wanting to dump off Ben Sheets while his stock is high. The problem is that all the other owners in the league are knowledgeable and know that Sheets is probably only good for 10-15 sta)rts (if I'm lucky) and sure they'd like to have him, but no they are not going to come off a keeper to get him.

However, when I take a look back, my team is good. And as shitty as they have been, I'm still about middle of the pack and by no means out of it. My lineup is solid. V. Martinez is a hitting machine. Teixeira is one of the best power men at the 1B spot, Cano is a hitting machine when he heats up, Garret Atkins likewise. Rollins is one of the baddest mofos on the planet and my OF aint' so bad either with Markakis (love), Adam Jones, Matsui, Hamilton, and crew.

My pitchers are pretty good too if they stay healthy. I probably have the 3rd best pitching staff in the league and the 2nd-3rd best hitting staff. My pitchers are power man Erik Bedard (hurting and struggling a bit), Ben Sheets (pitching like God on Crack right now), Verlander (could use a better team/manager, but there is no way Detroit can keep losing...he's winning 20 this year when they get in the groove), Oswalt (declining, but still good, but also still on a terrible team), and Chad Billingsley (young and had an awesome outting last time in a losing effort).

My farm team could use a little work, but overall, I'm happy with my lineup. I just need to leave it alone and let them do their thing.

Monday, April 14, 2008

MLB Picks

Yesterday was a bad day for me on the baseball picks. I went 1-4 and also got a "no action" due to Bedard being scratched from his start. I went risky on yesterday's picks and only 1 paid off.

I lost $3.75 yesterday and this puts my 3 day total at -$2.01. Blah.

Bye bye bankroll...again

I've almost got everything set up for the semi-regular home game. I think we are going to start trying it out on Thursday nights, but might rotate it to various nights throughout the year to accommodate everyone's schedules.

My buddy Rusty offered to donate his poker table until he gets it sold. It's a decent table with bumper pool built in. It's pretty high quality stuff with cherry wood and ball and claw feet. I'd buy it, but don't have the money that he wants for it.

On the other side of poker, I'm cashing out most of my bankroll. I've lost any desire to grind during these warm weather months. I left about $35 on Full Tilt to donk around with and I have about $80 on Poker Stars. The rest I've cashed out. I'm going to go ahead and finish off the bonus at Eurolinx before cashing out there.

Overall, I'm happy. It took me 2 $50 deposits back in October and I'm cashing out nearly $1000. The bankroll was well over $1000 at one point, but I hit a huge skid that killed that a month or 2 ago. I hit several skids over the course of those months and never really got flowing like in the past. You can blame it on the UIGEA and the tougher games or blame it on variance. I did learn a lot along the way and how to play in today's nittier games.

So what am I going to do with the money? Well, I'm going to buy a lawn mower. Unfortunately, my bankroll only allows for me to purchase about 1/2 a mower, so the other 1/2 will have to come out of my pocket. I think I'm going with a zero turn radius riding mower. They run somewhere between $2500-3000. I can get a 2007 model Cub Cadet for about $2700 with 0% interest for 2 years. So I think that's the direction I'm going. Unfortunately, the Cub Cadet dealer keeps banker's hours and I might have a hard time getting over there. If so, then Lowe's has the chance to beat them out of a sale.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

I ended up going 5-2 on my baseball picks today along with a loss on my 6 team parlay. I was 5-1 on my parlay with just the Detroit game costing me. Did Jim Leyland die and nobody tell us or something? What's the deal with leaving Verlander in when he was noticeably fatigued?

Anyway, I ended up with a $1.74 profit on the day and a total 2 day profit of $2.49. I got a little more risky on tomorrow's picks, but I think I have some good lines. The particular picks in question are Yanks over Sox, Marlins over Astros, and Brewers over Mets. Here are my picks:

Date placed:
Apr 13, 2008 12:48a Single #111247074
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(979) New York Yankees +135 Sun@8:05p
Competitor: (980) Boston Red Sox


* Phil Hughes (R) must throw first pitch for New York Yankees or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 1.35

Date placed:
Apr 13, 2008 12:48a Single #111247073
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(978) Seattle Mariners -130 Sun@4:10p
Competitor: (977) Los Angeles Angels


* Erik Bedard (L) must throw first pitch for Seattle Mariners or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.77

Date placed:
Apr 13, 2008 12:48a Single #111247072
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(964) Arizona Diamondbacks -130 Sun@4:10p
Competitor: (963) Colorado Rockies



Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.77

Date placed:
Apr 13, 2008 12:48a Single #111247071
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(959) Florida Marlins +120 Sun@2:05p
Competitor: (960) Houston Astros



Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 1.20

Date placed:
Apr 13, 2008 12:48a Single #111247070
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(957) Cincinnati Reds -130 Sun@1:35p
Competitor: (958) Pittsburgh Pirates


* Johnny Cueto (R) must throw first pitch for Cincinnati Reds or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.77

Date placed:
Apr 13, 2008 12:48a Single #111247069
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(951) Milwaukee Brewers +125 Sun@1:10p
Competitor: (952) New York Mets


* Jeff Suppan (R) must throw first pitch for Milwaukee Brewers or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 1.25

Date placed:
Apr 13, 2008 12:47a 3 Team Parlay #111247059
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(957) Cincinnati Reds -130 Sun@1:35p
Competitor: (958) Pittsburgh Pirates



Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(959) Florida Marlins +120 Sun@2:05p
Competitor: (960) Houston Astros



Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(978) Seattle Mariners -130 Sun@4:10p
Competitor: (977) Los Angeles Angels



Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 5.89

Saturday, April 12, 2008

More MLB Picks

I went 4-3 yesterday for a $0.75 net profit. I'm awesome at sports betting. Here are my picks today as I rev things up a bit:

Date placed:
Apr 12, 2008 12:01p 6 Team Parlay #111169089
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(901) Atlanta Braves -155 Sat@1:05p
Competitor: (902) Washington Nationals



Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(917) Detroit Tigers -125 Sat@1:05p
Competitor: (918) Chicago White Sox



Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(906) Arizona Diamondbacks -134 Sat@3:55p
Competitor: (905) Colorado Rockies



Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(920) Boston Red Sox -170 Sat@3:55p
Competitor: (919) New York Yankees



Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(910) Pittsburgh Pirates -120 Sat@7:05p
Competitor: (909) Cincinnati Reds



Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(914) Philadelphia Phillies -151 Sat@7:05p
Competitor: (913) Chicago Cubs



Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 24.03

Date placed:
Apr 12, 2008 11:59a Single #111168860
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(903) Milwaukee Brewers +131 Sat@1:10p
Competitor: (904) New York Mets


* Ben Sheets (R) must throw first pitch for Milwaukee Brewers or this pick is NO ACTION.
* Johan Santana (L) must throw first pitch for New York Mets or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 1.31

Date placed:
Apr 12, 2008 1:36a Single #111152793
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(915) San Diego Padres EVEN Sat@10:10p
Competitor: (916) Los Angeles Dodgers


* Chris Young (R) must throw first pitch for San Diego Padres or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 1.00

Date placed:
Apr 12, 2008 1:36a Single #111152790
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(930) Seattle Mariners -115 Sat@9:10p
Competitor: (929) Los Angeles Angels



Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.87

Date placed:
Apr 12, 2008 1:35a Single #111152789
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(927) Toronto Blue Jays -150 Sat@8:05p
Competitor: (928) Texas Rangers


* Roy Halladay (R) must throw first pitch for Toronto Blue Jays or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.67

Date placed:
Apr 12, 2008 1:35a Single #111152756
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(907) St. Louis Cardinals +103 Sat@4:05p
Competitor: (908) San Francisco Giants



Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 1.03


Date placed:
Apr 12, 2008 1:35a Single #111152744
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(917) Detroit Tigers -140 Sat@1:05p
Competitor: (918) Chicago White Sox


* Justin Verlander (R) must throw first pitch for Detroit Tigers or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.71

Date placed:
Apr 12, 2008 1:35a Single #111152741
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(901) Atlanta Braves -170 Sat@1:05p
Competitor: (902) Washington Nationals


* John Smoltz (R) must throw first pitch for Atlanta Braves or this pick is NO ACTION.

Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.59

Friday, April 11, 2008

Home Game

Before I get started.. How fucking hard is it to distinguish the difference between a phone line and the motherfucking internet? I have a customer who runs a business that has 3 fucking branches. He has some makeshift phone line going to his fax modem for faxing purposes. Of course it doesn't work. So, of course, now I assume all responsibilities of the phone company and they expect me to make it work. Fuck that. I told them to call the phone company.

"Our Internet is through the cable".

"This has nothing to do with the internet".

"We just had brand new cat 5 cable put in!! It can't be the line's problem".

"Jesus H. Motherfucking Christ! How is it not fucking mandatory to sterilize dumbass douche bags such as yourself?"

God damn I hate this place.

------

With that off my chest, I'm trying to start up a semi-regular home game. I'm in the process of getting in touch with all the possible participants and see when a good day/time would be. I have sent out several emails and hopefully we can come up with something.

Poker blogs are ghey

I have been trying to catch up on some of my RSS feeds lately which include more than several poker blogs that I read on a regular basis. However, after today, I really feel that I can slim that down a lot. Poker blogs aren't what they used to be and now are just pretty much gay.

I spent probably a week and a half away from all my blogs because I was too busy watching baseball, playing Oblivion, hanging with friends, bowling, painting, and playing guitar. Then today I decided I need to catch up before they get too overbearing. You know what I found out? I didn't miss a damn thing. Here is your average poker blog these days:



  • XXXX is a donkey. He pushed all in with XX and my XX got beat
  • XXXX, YYYY, ZZZZ, and the crew from WWWW all got together and got drunk and acted like donkies.
  • I don't play poker anymore, but I still have a blog and can call XXXX a donkey
  • Obama is God cause he's half honkey and all donkey



So basically, it's all the same shit over and over. What happened to the good old days of strategy posts by HDouble and DoubleAs? I remember reading about awesome home games and live games. I remember reading about the higher stakes players bringing in nightly totals that sometimes doubled my yearly salary. These were so fun to read.

Now, I'm sure there are plenty of good blogs out there and I do have plenty good ones in my RSS folders, but the amount of crap is far outweighing the good stuff (this blog included).

I gotta get back on track.

I noticed that Eurolinx has an April reload bonus. The best part of this reload bonus is that you don't even have to deposit. According to their web site, you can transfer money from your poker account over to the main account and they will credit you for the up to $500 bonus. You do have to play 15 times the bonus amount in raked hands though. That's 7500 raked hands for those that can't count. Not bad.

I'm still working on my first deposit bonus though. I'm only about 1/4 of the way to clearing that. It goes fast at the games I'm playing, I just haven't sit down and played any. I think we are supposed to get rain this weekend, so I'll try to clear off a bunch, if not all of that bonus. I'll probably start tonight if nothing is going on.

Once I finish off my first deposit, I'll be able to claim the $500 bonus and play that one off as well. If I can put my hands in, this should shape up to be a big month for me.

Baseball Wagering

I put $20 into Bodog and I'm going to wager on several baseball games a day and see how things turn out. It will probably be all $1 bets. Here are my picks for today:

Date placed:
Apr 11, 2008 9:33a Single #111085326
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(965) San Diego Padres -115 Fri@10:40p
Competitor: (966) Los Angeles Dodgers
* Jake Peavy (R) must throw first pitch for San Diego Padres or this pick is NO ACTION.
Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.87

Date placed:
Apr 11, 2008 9:33a Single #111085318
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(962) Arizona Diamondbacks -150 Fri@9:40p
Competitor: (961) Colorado Rockies
* Brandon Webb (R) must throw first pitch for Arizona Diamondbacks or this pick is NO ACTION.
Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.67

Date placed:
Apr 11, 2008 9:33a Single #111085317
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(960) Houston Astros -180 Fri@8:05p
Competitor: (959) Florida Marlins
* Roy Oswalt (R) must throw first pitch for Houston Astros or this pick is NO ACTION.
Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.56

Date placed:
Apr 11, 2008 9:33a Single #111085311
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(957) Atlanta Braves -160 Fri@7:35p
Competitor: (958) Washington Nationals
* Tim Hudson (R) must throw first pitch for Atlanta Braves or this pick is NO ACTION.
Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.63

Date placed:
Apr 11, 2008 9:33a Single #111085306
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(972) Tampa Bay Rays -160 Fri@7:10p
Competitor: (971) Baltimore Orioles
* James Shields (R) must throw first pitch for Tampa Bay Rays or this pick is NO ACTION.
Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.63

Date placed:
Apr 11, 2008 9:32a Single #111085295
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
NATIONAL LEAGUE
(955) Milwaukee Brewers +105 Fri@7:10p
Competitor: (956) New York Mets
* Manny Parra (L) must throw first pitch for Milwaukee Brewers or this pick is NO ACTION.
Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 1.05

Date placed:
Apr 11, 2008 9:32a Single #111085289
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(970) Cleveland Indians -165 Fri@7:05p
Competitor: (969) Oakland Athletics
* C.C. Sabathia (L) must throw first pitch for Cleveland Indians or this pick is NO ACTION.
Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.61

Date placed:
Apr 11, 2008 9:31a Single #111085284
Baseball - MLB Moneyline
AMERICAN LEAGUE
(967) New York Yankees -105 Fri@7:05p
Competitor: (968) Boston Red Sox
* Chien-Ming Wang (R) must throw first pitch for New York Yankees or this pick is NO ACTION.
Risk US$ 1.00 to win US$ 0.95

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The obsession of the week is....

BASEBALL!

The season has begun and we are more than a week into the swing of things. Baseball is fun. There are so many nuances of the game that normal people don't understand. You always hear "I can play baseball but no way I can watch that shit!". Bah. I could sit and watch it all day long.

My Braves are off to a slow start as is my Fantasy team. I had a cruddy draft this year and I'm trying to make up for it with some key trades. Even with my bad draft, I still have probably the 3rd best Pitching rotation in the league. Here is my entire lineup:

C - Victor Martinez
1B - Mark Teixiera
2B - Robbie Cano
3B - Garrett Atkins
SS - Jimmy Rollins
OF'ers - Josh Hamilton, Hideki Matsui, Nick Markakis, Delmon Young, Jermaine Dye, Brad Hawpe, Adam Jones (on my farm and I prematurely called him up), and Andruw Jones

Pitchers are: Erik Bedard, Ben Sheets, Justin Verlander, Tim Hudson, Roy Oswalt, along with Homer Bailey and Chad Billingsley riding the pine.

My farm club is starting to shape up with youngsters like: Chris Marrero, Andy LaRoche, Jason Heyward, Chris Parmelee, Rick Porcello, Jacob McGee, Daniel Cortes, Andrew Miller, and Luke Hochevar.

I have room for one more draft spot as I traded James Loney from my farm for Hideki Matsui. I'm trying to trade one of my outfielders for a stud farm-worth outfielder such as Jacoby Ellsbury. The owners of Justin Upton and Jay Bruce refused to trade those 2.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Time for a post!

I finally have a break from all my fun work to actually do a decent post. But I can't really think of anything to post about so I'll ramble on for a bit.

TOnight is bowling night. We are somewhere around the top of the standings during this fourth and final quarter of the year. We won quarter #3, so if we win quarter #4, we can skip the roll-off and go straight into the championship. We've had 2 bad weeks in a row though, so we need something to happen tonight. It's hard to focus on your bowling when it's 70 degrees outside.

I'm winning at poker again, although I'm scared to post any good fortunes to this blog because it always starts some downward spiral into being broke. I have been playing mostly $1/2 limit poker. I think my winrate over the last 1500 hands is somewhere north of 11.0 BB/100. Sustainable? I wish.

I've been listening to Widespread Panic lately. Does that make me a hippie? Probably. I've also written my own tune. It's a cool guitar diddy and some sub-par lyrics about my life. I'm gonna get my buddy Spook to help me with a solo. The music is coolest part of the song and I can't get it out of my head. Basically, I took some different chord progressions that I accidently discovered and made a cool sounding rock song. You will never hear me sing so, I'll never post the song on my page or anything, but with Spook's help, I might get him to sing and play the song and I'll post it. The only thing I ask are my royalties when the song goes Platinum and shit.

I'm supposed to be getting my appraisal this weekend. I was supposed to have it done tonight, but we couldn't work out the schedule. So Saturday or Sunday is the day. My hopes are high as I have had several people tell me that $150K would be a low appraisal for my house. Not sure if they are blowing smoke up my ass, but they sure have my hopes up now. My parents house appraised for $100K just the other day and although a nice house, it doesn't have all the features of mine such as the FULLY finished basement, nearly 100% sheet rock walls and ceilings, and the big double lot yard. I think I'll be in good shape.

I can't think of anything else. It's almost home time for me.

Working on change

I've been doing a lot better mentally lately. I have been putting that extra effort out to not be a lazy prick. This, in turn, has made my last few days better. However, there have been a few things that fell to the back burner like poker.

I have been able to play some poker the past week, but only in small spurts. Most of that time has been at the $1/2 limit tables just trying to clear some bonus money. I have faired pretty well at the tables, but that's because the games have been good. I booked a $60 win today in about 15 minutes because some guy decided he was going to raise every hand pre-flop and regardless of the board, he was going to bet/raise every street as well. This was a 6 handed table and my other 4 opponents had no clue how to deal with this. Fortunately, I love these idiots and was able to take advantage before he left.

I still have a good deal to go before I clear my first bonus. I should then have enough money for a 2nd bonus and then I'm going to reload for a 3rd bonus, so I have a lot of poker ahead of me on Eurolinx. The money is all laid out, now I just gotta go put in some time to claim it all.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Sick

My head is pounding today and I skipped out on breakfast to be safe. However, I'm training and had to come into work. Now, it's after lunch time and I braved some food for lunch and I'm starting to regret that decision.

When I get a headache, I also get sick at my stomach and I feel like I could puke at any time now. 4 more hours and I'm in good shape!

Monday, April 7, 2008

Uninterested

I've become uninterested in writing about poker lately. In fact, I've become uninterested about every aspect of poker except playing the game. I don't want to write about poker, read about poker, or even watch poker on TV. For some reason, over the past week or 2, I've lost all interest.

I'm sure the big reason is the weather and Spring time coming. As I spend more and more time outside, I'm spending less and less time in front of the computer. However, the weather hasn't completely killed my desire to play, just my time frames to do it in.

In fact, yesterday I got hooked up with a place that runs 12 week poker tournaments with a tournament of champions at the end. The tournies are only like $30/week and seem to get a fair number of runners. The downside? Most of the participants are retired golfers and therefore typically douche bags. I'm going to start playing in that at the beginning of the next 12 week cycle.

I also have a long list of cash games running around the area and I'm going to start playing in those as well. There's just too much money floating around for me to ignore all those games any longer.

Lastly, I have those bonuses at Eurolinx that I'm working off, so those are pre-occupyign my time as well. I'm having a blast playing limit poker again (just because I'm winning probably).

All that being said, the poker content on this site might drop a bit (not completely), but I will replace that content with hopefully more interesting stuff about investing, golfing, baseball, music, and general bitching and moaning about my job.

Winning the Fast Food war!

Subway has the tools to win the Fast Food war. They could blow McDonalds out of the water because they have found a niche: Fat people. When you think healthy fast food, you have to think Subway. I do anyway.

Subway has all the tools to become bigger than McDonalds. The food tastes better and is better for you. However, there are problems that will prevent that from ever happening.

First of all, Subway is expensive! I just paid $7.50 for a ham sandwich! C'mon guys, everyone has the dollar menu and then you have a product that doesn't even require being cooked and you charge $4-5 for a half sandwich? Add another $2.20 for chips and a drink and it's a down right rip off. For that $7.50, I can make my own sandwiches, chips, and drinks for the entire week!

Also, Subway's service has historically sucked ass. I have frequented many of their establishments all over the east coast and the only one that I would say had good service was the one in a commons area of my old college. The rest are filled with lazy, ignorant workers who can't hold a job any place else. How hard is it to place some meat and cheese between a slice of bread? Evidently, it's more challenging than I thought because for some reason, it always takes me 30 minutes to get my damn sandwich regardless of how many people are in line.

Lastly, what's the deal with not having a drive-thru at most locations? This is just pure laziness on their part. You have to realize that your niche audience are lazy people and don't want to get out of their car. So they will choose McDonalds and the convenience of never having to get out of the car over Subway every time!

Bottom line: Subway, if you lower your prices, practice better hiring standards, and put in some more drive-thru's and you will topple all the other fast food restaraunts in town.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Family Guy



Pauly just wrote a very good post about his family and the disappointments family can lead to. Since, I have been avoiding the poker tables lately, this post actually stirred up some thoughts in my head that I could write about in my own blog.

It's no secret that Dr. Pauly is my favorite of all the bloggers. I envy it when people do their own thing and succeed in life. It's kind of like giving a big middle finger to everyone that shoves doubts in your head from the time you're born to the time you're all grown up and move out on your own. You see it time and time again. Eat your vegetables, go to school, get good grades, get a good job, then become a monkey working paycheck to paycheck. No offense to the other monkies in the world, but that lifestyle has made me want to eat a bullet a time or 2. I'd rather buck the system.

When it comes to my family, I have my parents and then I have the rest of my family. Now don't get me wrong, I love my parents more than anything in this world. However, I do blame them for some of the issues I had when growing up. I was sheltered, being an only child. There were so many things that I have never experienced or didn't experience until later in life than most people. My parents, having been brought up this way themselves raised me to follow that Nazi-like path from childhood to school days to adulthood where you spend 33% of your life working for the man. That's all fine and dandy for some folks, but it's my version of Hell.

I love my parents a lot and the last thing I want to do is disappoint them. However, there has to be a line drawn at some point. They wouldn't be happy if I quit my job and played poker professionally. What about if I quit my job and started my own business? I doubt it. I'm sure if it was a success, but if it failed, then that's what I get for bucking the trend. I'm 30 years old and there is so much I haven't tried because I was following this path my parents lead me down. Blindly I followed that path until I got to this destination where I am today...Hell. Their answer to my problems is "Get another job".

I've chosen a lifestyle to that would make my parents proud (for the most part). I've done the school thing. I've done the good grades thing. I've done the job thing. I'm sure it makes them all warm and cozy inside saying "My son is a computer programmer". Now, I'm getting older and responsibilities pile up and now here I sit having to have this job to survive in life. It's a road that I'm frantically trying to get off of.

I guess things will start with my being "bad debt" free. Not having to be a slave to pay off my debts opens me up to more options. For 1 thing, I don't need as much money every month to live. Secondly, I can save money a lot easier, which will help me get out of the rat race in the long run. But the question is "What do I want out of life?".

Pauly's response to this questions was "I just want to write and be left alone". I can simplify that response to work for me: "I just want to be left alone". I sit down on my couch last night with my guitar and after about 2 hours, I realized that this was as much fun as I had all week. No worries, nobody bugging me, just be banging away at the guitar and sometimes making pleasing sounds come out.

It's all fine and dandy to make someone else happy or proud of you, but I honestly can't sacrifice any more of my time to please other people...family or not. Life is too short to live like this. Changes are coming.

Guitar stuff

I just bought some new guitar stuff. I got a dozen picks because I'm tired of trying to find the same one I've had for over a year. Sometimes I can't find it and have to resort to playing with a cut off corner from a credit card. No more! I will soon have a dozen of my very own.

I bought a capo because some of the Old Crowe Medicine Show songs I've been playing really need a capo if you want to sing and play at the same time. I'm sure there are tons of other songs where this would come in handy as well and the things are dirt cheap so yay!

I got 2 new sets of acoustic strings. The ones I have on my acoustic now have been on for quite a while and I know they are due for a change. I opted not to get any electric strings because I think I actually have some somewhere. I also got a new peg winder because I lost my old one. These things are a must for changing strings.

It looks like I'm going through my guitar phase now. I'll probably be passionate about this for a month or 2 and then move back into poker or golf or something else.

Another Friday

TGIF. I got a busy weekend ahead of me. I have to finish painting because my papers are finished at the bank and I should be expecting a phone call for an appraisal any day now. I also need a haircut. I've turned into a complete hippy and haven't had a haircut since like November or something. Needless to day, my hair is getting long. Lastly, I need to change the oil in both vehicles, go to the dump, hit the bank, and go see my new second cousin who was born day before yesterday. Oh yeah, I gotta clean house too! Luckily, it's supposed to rain all weekend, so I don't have to feel bad for bailing out on a golf trip with my buds.

I did play a little poker last night, but my heart just wasn't into it. I booked a win and called it quits early. Then I fired up Oblivion and played it for a little while before settling down to watch the Braves game. I need to quit watch Braves games. I've watched 3 and they lost all 3. The only game they won was the one not on TV.

Speaking of TV, I'm cutting an expense today. I'm getting rid of my Netflix account. It's not their problem or anything. I just don't watch the movies anymore. I have had the same 3 movies at my house for a month now and have only watched 2. Yet, I'm keep forgetting to put those 2 in the mail. The only time I remember is when I'm at work. I'll probably resubscribe in the winter.

I'm contemplating taking guitar lessons. I need to check around for prices. I'm also going to ask my buddy SPook if he wants to school me a bit. I'm sure he doesn't care, but they have just had a baby and I don't get to see him that often these days. When I do, he's usually playing a show with his band. I doodled around the acoustic last night so much that my fingers are in pain today. I can tell that I'm getting better, but I'm kind of in a rut playing the same stuff over and over. I think my way of avoiding work today will be to find some new stuff to play.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Can't find the motivation

I'm having difficulties finding the motivation to play poker lately. I'm sure the reason is a combination of Spring time and this little video game called Oblivion. Sometimes you just get burnt out on poker. I'm not going to force myself to play unless there's something involved like a bonus. It just so happens I have a bonus to clear right now so I have to force myself to play. I'm sure the urge to play will come back in due time though. It's not like I hate the game like I have in the past. I'm just kind of ready for something else to occupy my time.

I've been playing A LOT of guitar lately. I can tell it has been a lot because when I type, my left fingertips are so callaused that they kind of slide off the keys. Guitar is fun when you learn new stuff. It's also pleasing to the ear and relaxing. I still haven't broken out my electric guitar in ages. It's such a pain in the ass hooking the amp up. I also need new strings for the guitar as well. I love acoustic music though, so I have no problem banging away on the Tak.

I guess one of my reasons for not wanting to play much poker lately has been my work. I've had a rough week here at the office. Between Windows Vista headaches and my boss mumbling about some crisis all the time, I'm ready to go postal. All I want to do when I get home is relax. Poker is not relaxing. The guitar is.

I'm not sure if I'll play poker tonight. I might take one more night off and then start back at it tomorrow evening. On Saturday, I have so much to do. I need to finish painting the trim in my big bedroom. I also need to go to the dump and get a haircut. Now my friends are hounding me to go golfing and I REALLY want to go, but Saturday is my day to get shit done. I guess I could paint tonight...who knows, I might. Doesn't seem too relaxing to me.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Tidbits

...Like those poor sots who are going to vote for Obama thinking he'll actually shake up DC.


Pauly wrote that quote and it couldn't be more on the money. Think about it.

- I've noticed the conservative talk shows spewing some garabage lately about the economy not being as bad as the press lets on. I can feel the effects of the economy more than the average citizen. I don't rely soley on a monkey's wage to live. I have other irons in the fire that make income. When the economy is bad, I feel it. I've felt it for the past 6 months. Where does all my money go? Food and gas. Food, I can deal with... Gas is another issue.

Diesel fuel is over $4/gallon now. Diesel fuel is cheaper to make than regular gasonline. Also demands for oil are lower now than before. So, what gives? I understand the basics of supply and demand. So if demand is on the decline and supply is on the rise, how come prices are also on the rise? Bottom line is that $3+/gallon is too much for product that affects so many peoples' lives. I don't blame the oil companies either. They show record profits, but the profit margins are very low when compared to other products being sold around the world. I blame the tree-huggers who won't allow us to build any more refineries.

- I stay away from the internet as much as possible on 4/1. Everything you read is crap anyway. Then when 4/1 comes, the non-crap even turns to crap. I had read American Idol was having Dolly Parton night. I was very surprised when this turned out to be true. Brilliant move AI execs. Needless to say, Dolly Parton night was crap.

- I did play poker last night. At least I tried. I got a couple hundred hands in before I gave up. My PC just didn't want to behave. I've had the same install of XP on it for about 2 years now. I guess it's time to clean that up a bit. I need to back up a ton of files and downloads before clearing out that beast. At least I won at poker. Not much, but a win's a win.

- I used my special "Small Town" guy powers to circumvent my fears of getting a bad agent to do my house appraisal. I used my underground network of relatives and friends and secured the same guy that did my last appraisal. He knows my house, he knows what it looked like before and will be impressed when he comes in for a 2nd visit.

- If you are running a fantasy baseball league, avoid USA Today's Sandbox site like the plague. So far, we've had a draft page not work (manually drafting in a keeper league sucks!), our live scoring page has yet to work properly, slow updating of the stats, and now the whole damn webpage will not show and allow us to set our lineups. Oh yeah, and they just raised prices $2/month starting this month. Awesome job guys!

- Oblivion is still ruling my thoughts, but I'm getting aggravated because I don't have time to play. I had time last night and was able to play for about 30 minutes before my computer problems blew me away. I haven't even picked up Bioshock since starting Oblivion. It's such an awesome game and everything about it is impressive. I never really gave RPGs much of a chance in the past, but they are right up my alley when I think about it now. I guess you can think WoW for that one.

- I'll be out of town for the GTA:IV launch. Boo!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Busy bee

I've been busy today and not able to get my usual blogging done during work hours. I got a new laptop for work and have been dealing with that. Vista sucks... Vista networked to an SCO Unix server sucks major monkey balls.

I played a little bit of poker yesterday, but nothing major. I did fairly well I guess considering I was playing LHE. I'm going to continue to play LHE until I finish off these Eurolinx bonuses too. This first bonus at least. If I get enough so that I can play $50NL or $100NL then I'll switch back to those games. There just aren't enough raked hands at $20NL to even waste my time trying.

I also spent the majority of yesterday evening watching baseball. I watched the Braves/Pirates donkathon. Ummm Atlanta's bullpen needs help as always. Some people are picking the Braves to go to the series, but when comparing them to the Mets, there is no comparison. I'm still rooting for them anyway. Maybe some of the youngsters will break through *Ahem* Yunel Escobar.

My fantasy team started out ripping shit loose. However, none of my pitchers got any run support. I've had 5 starters go since Sunday. Hudson went deep and no-decision, Sheets deep and no-decision, Bedard went 5.1 and got no decision, Verlander went 6+ and no decision, followed by Oswalt going 5+ with 6 K's and a loss. Can a brother get some run support?

Tonight = Poker + Oblivion + maybe some American Idol.