Last night I got together with some of the guys from the rugby team for a round of poker...Texas No Limit Hold 'Em Style.
Now mind you, it's been a while since I have played this since the last time I did was in college and we had a max by-in of $5 in change so you didn't feel like you were going to lose too much money over the night. I was a pretty good player back then but I knew that I was going to be a little rusty going into this one.
First few hands I was pretty much dealt crap which meant I had to fold but I got into a pretty vigorous betting match with RuggerJohnnyD and finally went all in on one hand, sadly enough, was unable to hide the smile on my face. It was, enough, however, to make him fold and for me to take the pot and a pretty nice sized chip lead.
Of course that lead was short lived as I got dragged into another bidding war certain that I had the high hand when in fact I was mercilessly killed and sent back down to the minors and had to fight it out again until once again I went all in on another hand only to be called by RuggerJohnnyD, who was the chip leader for the majority of the evening. After the first hour, Alex had gone out and took advantage of the buy-in rule and Coach Harold did the same as well. However, it was Coach Harold who finished out of the money as he went out on a pair of sixes to RuggerJohnnyD's pair of Jacks (or maybe Kings...either way he won).
By this point, it was down to me, Howie (Harold's other half), Alex, and John. Alex was limping with between 50-100 bucks in chips and whenever the blinds came his way he had no choice but to go all in. Since Howie and I were battling for second we were more than willing to let Alex go all-in and finish fourth. Somehow, Alex would always seem to win these life-or-death hands and make it to another round of play.
Sitting in third place, I knew I had to do something in order to take some chips away from John and make my game go a bit longer. Now, granted, I don't remember my exact cards but for the sake of it all, I had a Q-7 suited in diamonds when the flop hit with another queen and another 7 giving me two pairs. I immediately called all in because I was willing to make that jump and at least double up and steal the blinds.
John called since it was really just pocket change to him at this point and he turned over a queen and jack off suit which meant I had the lead. At the turn, no card came up that would help John beat me so it was down to the final card...aka The River.
John's two pair beat my two pair and I went from trying to browbeat Alex into fourth place (he eventually did take third) to taking up firm residence (and 10% of the pot for my efforts) as well. If this was celebrity poker this would have been the equivalent of that blonde chick that won the first event pulling out a straight on the river to beat out Paul Rudd's trip sixes. A total suck out.
It was brutal.
But it was fun.