Because so many rumors have been swirling around, I thought I would set the record straight and lay down the official version of events. I'll tell you right now that the story does not have a happy ending: I did not turn a piece of my posterior into a million dollar payday at the LA Poker Classic. But at least I took a shot.
Having monied in one LAPC preliminary event, I decided to take a flier on another. I was doing okay, nothing special, when the conversation at my table turned to the surveillance cameras mounted above the tables in the ballroom of the Commerce Casino. I made some joke about mooning the camera. The guy to my left offered me a hundred bucks to do just that. Well, I reached for my belt... he reached for his wallet... and I... folded like an origami crane. Ah, but then a guy sitting across from me sweetened the pot with another hundred bucks. "Well," I thought, "now I'm priced in."
So I dropped trou, they paid me off, and we all went about our business. You can be sure that I earned some image equity for that move. After all, a guy who can moon surveillance cameras in a public casino is probably capable of doing anything with his cards. Alas, even my maniac image didn't keep my queens from getting cracked by jacks, and just before the dinner break, I got railed.
You know how it is, sometimes, when you go to play poker and you just don't quite get that itch completely scratched? That's the way I was that night as I wandered around the casino and wondered what to do next. I noticed a $200 super satellite forming up for the $10,000 buy-in LAPC main event. Realizing that I held in my hand the dumbest $200 I'd ever have in my life, I decided to take a shot at the super. My game plan was simple: Super fast play; no rebuys. Either my moon money would carry me through the satellite or it would not. Long story short, it did. Three hours later, I had my ticket to the Show.
I wish I could tell you that I parlayed a stupid dare into a high money finish (or even - dare one dream? - a win) in the championship event. Alas, it was not to be. Well, that's tournament poker: More than 90 percent of everyone who enters comes away empty handed. Still, I can't help feeling a little wistful. Man, would I love to have told the story on TV of how I played not for $10,000, not even for $200, but literally for my own ass, and turned a glimpse of my gluteus maximus into a million dollar payday.
In a parallel universe I'm convinced I did. However, as we live in this universe, and not the one of my fevered imagining, I have to settle for an amusing anecdote in lieu of a big tournament win. Oh, and a lesson, always a lesson: Be willing to do anything at the poker table. Absolutely anything. You never know what benefits it might bring.