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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in adbploink's LiveJournal:

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Wednesday, July 4th, 2012
1:55 pm
BARGE 2012
Not that this probably matters to many or any, but I won't be doing BARGE this year.

On the plus side, my son is graduating Navy bootcamp in mid-August (hopefully).
Thursday, September 1st, 2011
9:56 am
Thursday, October 7th, 2010
8:40 am
Life Is A Mystery
In about 45 minutes I leave for the airport, gone for a 5 day holiday. Where am I going? I know not.

That's right, it's time for the 2nd annual Mystery Man Tour.

For those who forget, a group of us put up an amount of money, book the same days off and one of us is chosen at random to be the organizer. We don't know who the organizer is or where we are going. Last year there were 10 of us. This year there are 9 (two dropped out and one new addition). We've upped the ante to £500 (last year it was £400) and 5 days instead of 4. Last tyear was an amazing trip to Puerto Banus, filled with drinking, food, great company and W****** Y*** O** C***. This year? We shall see.
Wednesday, September 1st, 2010
1:28 pm
I have been blessed
As some of you know I was recently in the hospital for a (relatively) minor procedure related to a medical condition I've had since my early twenties. Although it was nothing life threatening or really all that serious, it did and has given me time to ruminate on things. This is probably the most sustained no-work time I've had in about a decade.

One thing I have realized above all else is the fantastic friends I have. I'm not the best about reaching out and when I'm ill or (as in this case) recuperating and not feeling 100% I tend to not want company and just want to crawl into my cave and hibernate until I'm well. And yet, my friends have reached out to me. Not in an obtrusive way, but in the "whatever you need, we're here for you" kind of way. Old friends, new friends. Close friends and some just starting to be closer friends.

What can I say. I'm a lucky player and a powerful friendly force surrounds me. So, if I don't say it often enough, please do know that I do think it and mean it. I am very lucky to have *you* in my life. All of you. If you read this and think it might apply to you, well then it does. I love you all and I promise not to take you for granted.
Wednesday, June 30th, 2010
4:35 pm
Tuesday, June 29th, 2010
1:57 pm
From 2+2 Thread
"Dear Big Game 2+2 Fans,

We sincerely apologize for the dumb**** and the stiff from weeks one and two. This week we are providing you with a Russian born amazon stripper MILF in recognition of your disapproval.

Thank you for your continued support,
Friday, June 25th, 2010
1:28 pm
Final TOC Lineup
Has been posted to WSOP.com and here are the results:

1 PHIL IVEY 16,267
7 JOHNNY CHAN 10,434
10 JOHN JUANDA 8,835
11 ERIK SEIDEL 8,802
13 HUCK SEED 8,180
15 T.J. CLOUTIER 6,281
16 SAM FARHA 6,085
18 GREG RAYMER 5,404
19 JOE HACHEM 5,272

First of all, pretty surprised at the low turnout of voting. I thought there would be more votes placed. Only having to get 5K votes to make it is not much at all.

Surprises that got in (vs. my predictions):
Cunningham, Greestein, Harrington, Seidel, Farha, Cloutier
Surprises that got left out:
Mortensen, Moneymaker, Lindgren, Deeb, Gold (yay!), Eastgate

Greg's inclusion shows (to me) the value of continuing to play and being extremely fan-friendly vs. Eastgate and Gold (and Yang) who have basically disappeared. Really surprised about Moneymaker though, especially since Barry and Harrington both made it and neither have had any significant TV time in recent years.
Friday, May 14th, 2010
2:39 pm
TOC Update
So, WSOP.com has posted an update on their voting. With 2 months to go (jesus, you really need to have voting open 3 months?!?!?!) the current voted top 20 has some radical difference from my previous predictions:

On their list but not on mine:
Allen Cunningham
Barry Greenstein
Dan Harrington
Erik Seidel
Sam Farha
T.J. Cloutier

On my list, but not on theirs:
Carlos Mortensen
Chris Moneymaker
Erick Lindgren
Freddy Deeb
Jamie Gold
Peter Eastgate

Some interesting differences there. I thought that Moneymaker would be a given, but apparently his popularity is dropping.
Thursday, April 15th, 2010
11:38 am
Ten Signs You're Almost Maybe Getting a Little Bit Older
Meme from various LJ friends

10. You remember when NL hold'em was exclusively found in tournaments and anything other than limit in cash games was an extreme rarity
9. You remember when poker was pocker and 5 suit chinese and deadhead finishes 2nd and you know what # and ~# mean
8. You programmed on punch cards. In Fortran. In High School.
7. You played OGRE and remember the feeling of punching out the little pieces
6. There is no number 6
5. You watched ON-TV and SelecTV and Z-Channel... scrambled... hoping for that little clear flash of boob
4. You remember Vegas when slots all had pull arms and your fingers turned black from handling the coins
3. You spent a Susan B. Anthony dollar as a quarter
2. The bicentennial was a big deal
1. Making sure to watch Roots and Shogun (when they first aired) because if you missed them you would have to wait until they came on again
Wednesday, April 14th, 2010
1:10 pm
So much awesome
Watch this:

Star Wars: Uncut Trailer from Casey Pugh on Vimeo.

Then go here for more.

You can thank me now or later.
Thursday, March 25th, 2010
11:28 am
More TOC Talk
Out: Alexander Kravchenko
In: Billy Baxter

OK, so now we know those who are on the bubble. Interesting that Billy Baxter came back in when he wasn't one of the three who dropped out before (Bobby Baldwin, Jeff Madsen, Rob Hollink).

Looking back at the top 20 I think are going to make it, Terrence asked who was voting for Jamie Gold. I certainly didn't (and don't think he belongs there) but he is getting a surprising amount of industry support. Once of the recent televised cash games (I think it was High Stakes Poker) talked about how his WSOP victory was one of the most masterful in recent years. Again, I don't agree with this statement, but apparently it's becoming a more accepted wisdom. He did have the seemingly magical ability of saying the right thing at the right time to get his opponents to do exactly what he wanted. Of course those same players talked about how that didn't work in the cash games and how they wished he would come back to play.

Nevertheless, I do see many people placing him in the top 20 vote lists, so it might be that history is beginning to be kind to him and people are forgetting what a douche he really is. Kinda like Nixon maybe?
Thursday, March 18th, 2010
11:50 am
Update on Vote Whoring
Since I posted the top 50 from a few days ago, there have been a few minor changes.

Bobby Baldwin
Jeff Madsen
Rob Hollink

Alexander Kravchenko
Daniel Schreiber
Vitaly Lunkin

Probably a pretty good indication as to who is on the bubble and therefore likely not to make the top 20. My predictions (not my actual votes):

Antonio Esfandiari
Carlos Mortensen
Chris Ferguson
Chris Moneymaker
Daniel Negreanu
Doyle Brunson
Erick Lindgren
Freddy Deeb
Greg Raymer
Howard Lederer
Huck Seed
Jamie Gold
Jennifer Harman
Joe Hachem
John Juanda
Johnny Chan
Peter Eastgate
Phil Hellmuth
Phil Ivey
Scotty Nguyen
Tuesday, March 16th, 2010
4:49 pm
Vote whoring
Just put in my top 20 picks for the WSOP TOC tournament. After the voting, it shows you the top 50 (top 20 get in) in no particular order:

Allen Cunningham
Freddy Deeb
Dan Harrington
Howard Lederer
Amarillo Slim Preston
Jason Mercier
Ted Forrest
Phil Ivey
Prahlad Friedman
Peter Eastgate
Doyle Brunson
Annette Obrestad
Sam Farha
Huck Seed
Greg Raymer
Philip Galfond
Men Nguyen
David Benyamine
Carlos Mortensen
Antonio Esfandiari
Layne Flack
Alexandre Gomes
Barry Greenstein
Jeffrey Lisandro
J. C. Tran
David Sklansky
Johnny Chan
Erick Lindgren
T.J. Cloutier
Hoyt Corkins
Chris Moneymaker
Jamie Gold
Daniel Negreanu
Dario Minieri
John Juanda
Phil Hellmuth
Jeff Madsen
Eli Elezra
Daniel Alaei
Chris Ferguson
Jennifer Harman
Kenny Tran
Tom Mcevoy
Bobby Baldwin
Joe Hachem
Scotty Nguyen
Erik Seidel
Rob Hollink
David Williams
Humberto Brenes

More than a few surprises there. Obviously the VH going on by Annette and Prahlad (those are the two campaigns I'm aware of). Men the Scumbag? Really? Rob Hollink and Alexandre Gomes surprise as well. Amarillo Slim is just... weird. Will be interesting to see the top 20, but I think a popularity contest is not the way to run this thing.
Thursday, October 15th, 2009
12:30 pm
2009 Concert review
Those of you on my Facebook might have seen my concert schedule for the year, which was probably the most extensive for me in at least 20 years, quite possible ever. Short listing with 1-5 * ratings:

Pink at 02 in Dublin (*** 1/2)
It was a last minute call to go to this show and I was glad I did. Always liked her music but was very impressed with her showmanship and playing to the crowd. It was a bit of a more Madonna-ish show, with trapezes and the like, but all in all very enjoyable. Would have been rated higher, but the sound was unfortunately horrible.

Blue Man Group at MEN in Manchester (***)
Having seen BMG many times in Vegas and owning the DVD of their tourning show, I wasn't expecting to have too many surprises for this show, and I didn't. It was a nice change of pace from the Vegas show in having more vocal musical numbers, but the strength of BMG is really the performance art and humor and in this setting the show really suffers.

Talon at Gaity Theatre in Douglas, IOM (*)
More for amusement purposes (and some slight foreshadowing). This is an Eagles cover band. Even though tickets were relatively inexpensive, I overpaid. I left at the intermission.

Dave Matthews Band at Brixton Academy in London (****)
I don't think I could ever give a DMB show less than 4 stars, so this is probably at the lower end of my scale for them, even though it was seeing them in a relatively intimate venue (probably 2000 people). Sound was decent but not great and the setlist was very disappointing, with too much emphasis on the new album, approximately 40%. Apparently this was being filmed along with the previous night for a future DVD, so we will see.

Hard Rock Calling at Hyde Park in London Day 2 (** - ****1/2)
Having missed the first day of HRC to see DMB, this was my first music festival in probably 25 years. Got there early in order to see the Pretenders and Chrissy was in fine form. ***1/2 for her show which includes a 1/2 deduction for brevity but 1/2 increase for the girl in the crowd hula-hooping in a bikini during the entire set. Went to sit in the beer garden until Ben Harper came on and he was somewhat disappointing, really not getting into the crowd at all clocking in the ** rating. Wasn't really familiar with Fleet Foxes but did enjoy the show and the came in a solid ***. Then Neil Young. Wow. The man can Rock. He had it all and really ramped up the performance, until finally bringing on Sir Paul at the end. ****1/2 as befits the headliner for the day.

Hard Rock Calling at Hyde Park in London Day 3 (**1/2 - ****)
After a late night previously, didn't get the festival quite as early as also my back was starting to act up. Age is definitely starting to get the better of me. Got there in time for James Morrison who was similar to Ben Harper the day before in that he really didn't seem to pull the crowd into his groove, although it could just be that his style of music doesn't work for a big festival crowd, resulting in a **1/2 rating. DMB was good but not great, not helped by the fact that they only got to play for 60 minutes instead of their normal 2.5 hours. Some decent rarieties and the crowd was definitely into them bringing it up to a **** performance. Finally Springsteen took the stage. He usual highly energetic performance had a crowd that was clearly overwhelmingly there to see him going wild. Unfortunately by this point my back was killing me and I had to miss the last several songs of his (long) set which clocked in at a solid **** performance. After these two days, festivals have taken a back seat in priority for me.

Kaiser Chiefs/U2 at Croke park in Dublin (****)
Got there around midway through the Kaiser Chiefs performance which was quite simply awesome. I would give them **** which I think it pretty high for an opening act, especially one having to perform in broad daylight. Definitely got the crowd going. U2 was amazing for a few reasons. The stage itself is pretty incredible. And seeing U2 in Dublin is something that should just be experienced. That said, it was still a pretty mundane set that seemed overly polished, but still ****.

Eagles at MEN in Manchester (***1/2)
Didn't expect to be going to this one and was pretty jazzed about going. As expected, the Eagles put on a polished show that reflected well their extensive catalogue of hits. Formulaic in spots, but still a rare thrill to see some true legends in concert. I do worry about Joe Walsh though, as it does seem as though he is permanently brain damaged at this point.

Glasvegas/U2 at Millenium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales (**1/2)
Actually arrived at the stadium too late to see the opener due to traffic delays and parking difficulties. Wasn't too disappointed as I only knew a couple songs from them. I chose to go to this show for a couple reasons. First, it was the closer on the European leg and I was hoping for some surprises. More importantly, I was able to get decent seats for this show (we had floor for Dublin), albeit behind the stage. However I wasn't too worried as the stage is a 360 view (it is called the U2 260 tour after all) which we didn't really get a chance to experience in Dublin as due to the stadium there they only utilized 3 sides. Well it turned out to be a bad decision. In fact, reflecting upon the show, I've just downgraded my rating from 3 to 2.5 stars. Only about 1 in 4 songs had any attention directed toward our end of the staging and only 2 songs in the whole set had any sort of presence throughout the song. In addition they played the exact same set as Dublin, which you would hope would have at least some changes. Apparently U2 are bringing the tour back over again in 2010. I won't be going.

Kaiser Chiefs at Villa Marina in Douglas, IOM (****1/2)
Rare chance to see a fairly decent name in a small veneue (<2000 seats). Also was lucky and got ahold of VIP passes which included an after-party with the band. All in all an amazing show. The intimacy of the venue combined with the incredible high energy of the band made it my show of the year. Including some neat tricks such as singing one of the songs from the back of the hall (which was about 10 ft. from me) was just icing on the cake. I would not turn down the chance to see this highly entertaining band again.

Davy Knowles and Back Door Slam at Gaity Theatre in Douglas, IOM (****1/2)
Davy is a local legend and, if there is justice, may someday become a worldwide one. I first saw Back Door Slam open for the Who 2 years ago here in IOM. Back then it was Davy performing with 3 other local lads, but it was immediately clear that he was the star with his amazing guitar skills and great sense of rock 'n blues. Not long after Davy traveled to the US to promote his first album, along the way opening for the likes of Chickenfoot and Peter Frampton, who has also produced his most recent album. He also traded in his old bandmates for 3 Seattle musicians and his name has been promoted to the marquee.

This was Davy's first trip back to IOM in a couple years and I was again fortunate enough to score VIP passes (which included box seats, and I'm talking REAL box seats, up in the air about 10 ft from the stage) and the aforementioned after party. Well, the concert was simply amazing. Davy is a quality musician and the only thing keeping this from being my top concert of the year and a 5 star rating was the sound engineer's choice to keep the vocals turned down so low.

So that is my year in concerts (so far). I still have one more weekend scheduled to see Eddie Izzard in Manchester and Green Day in Liverpool over Halloween weekend and I may follow-up with a report on those as well.
Tuesday, August 4th, 2009
2:04 pm
Thursday, July 30th, 2009
8:40 am
Hime may not like this, but John Barrowman (of "Torchwood" fame) will be coming to the Isle of Man for a one night only one-man show tomorrow.

No, I'm not going, but I would.
Tuesday, July 7th, 2009
4:57 pm
It couldn't happen again, could it?
For Terrence: another Playboy Mansion event involving Annie Duke and a WSOP seat.

From the email they sent me (not that I could find on the site) there is already some good news:

"6 Poker Tickets Remain CardPlayer Magazine has a Special Offer for the Remaining Poker Seat Tickets

Purchase a Poker Ticket and Receive Double the Starting Chips!!

You'll Get $3000 in Chips rather than $1500.

Offer good while supplies last (new purchases only). After completing your purchase at Aces-Angels.org, send an emailwith the name of your VIP Host and the Codeword "CardPlayer" to invitations@Aces-Angels.org to redeem."

Wow that's so cool, if I registered after people who have already paid their money and really wanted to go, I get WAY more equity than they do! They claim over $50,000 in prizes, although $25,000 of that is for first place, which gets a 2010 main event seat as part of it. No mention as to what any of the other prizes are worth or even what they might be, which probably means they'll be along the line of the fabulous prize that Terrence won.
Tuesday, April 7th, 2009
12:40 pm
Not expected but not unwelcome
I am:
William Gibson
The chief instigator of the "cyberpunk" wave of the 1980s, his razzle-dazzle futuristic intrigues were, for a while, the most imitated work in science fiction.

Which science fiction writer are you?

Wednesday, March 25th, 2009
2:00 pm
Poker Quote
Recently read Neil Gaiman's "American Gods" book chosen at random from a bookstore shelf and really enjoyed it. Mentioned it to a colleague at work and was loaned a selection of his books, one of which I started reading last night. Very early on, I came across the following poker-related quote, which I rather enjoy.

"God does not play dice with the universe; He plays an ineffable game of his own devising, which might be compared, from the perspective of any of the other players [i.e., everybody], to being involved in an obscure and complex version of poker in a pitch-dark room, with blank cards, for infinite stakes, with a Dealer who won't tell you the rules, and who smiles all the time." ~Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, Good Omens, 1991
Monday, February 2nd, 2009
1:07 pm
My own Meme
Let's see if this one takes off. One of the things I do as part of my job is open accounts at various online poker rooms. I've realized recently that I don't always cash out of those rooms and have funds sitting at various sites (currently 7-8). It got me thinking about the number of sites where I actually have an account, whether active or not. Following is my list;

1. PokerStars
2. Bodog
3. FullTilt
4. Cake
5. Mansion
6. PaddyPower
7. DuskTilDawn (DTDPoker)
8. Virgin
9. Ladbrokes
10. Betfriends (moved from Nextpoker)
11. Titan
12. Pokerworld
13. Doyles Room
14. Party
15. GamesGrid
16. Empire
17. CDPoker
18. Everest
19. Hollywood Poker
20. PokerRoom
21. Ultimate Bet
22. Absolute
23. Paradise
24. Pacific Poker (888)
25. Golden Tiger
26. Platinum Poker (I believe now defunct)
27. JetSetPoker (now defunct)
28. Duplicate POker (now defunct)
29. Fleet Street Games (now defunct)

I'm almost certain to have missed one or two, but that's pretty close. Anyone else?

Current Mood: amused
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