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Daniel - Poker Journal

Thanksgiving Weekend Part I- Snow Sucks

28 Nov 2004

Seriously, I just can’t hack it in the cold anymore. I love those mid July days in Vegas where you can fry an egg on the sidewalk. You really can, my mother tried it last summer and came out with two perfectly cooked sunny side up eggs.

When I arrived in Grand Rapids at 9:30am EST the weather wasn’t so bad. No snow anywhere and not too windy. I was pretty tired after taking a red eye that had a lay over in Minneapolis so I took a nap as soon as I got there.

I woke up around 2:00 pm and looked outside… it was like nine feet of snow! Ok well maybe not nine feet but man it really came down. Now remember I brought my little buddy Mushu with me and he is a west coast dog. I was really curious to see how he would take to the snow. I put his sweater on (no he doesn’t have booties) and we head outside.

Mushu looked totally confused. As in, “Are you serious? You don’t really expect me to do my business in this cold. You must be out of your mind master. I ain’t goin’ nowhere.” Mushu wouldn’t budge. I practically had to drag him outside but finally he ventured into the white stuff. He proceeded carefully for a while but eventually he got used to it. I wouldn’t go as far as to say that he liked it though.

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That night we went to the B.O.B. or Baaaab as some of the locals call it. **Trivia question** Does anyone know what B.O.B. stands for?

I was looking forward to the night out actually, I’d heard that the B.O.B. was a really cool hang out but had never been. From the moment I walked in the door I got swarmed. “Hey it’s Negrano!”

“You’re that guy from the WSOP.”

“Hey Negrano come have a drink with us in the VIP.”

That continued for most of the night. I had no idea poker was this popular in the area, it seemed like everybody in the building played poker on a regular basis in a home game or on the internet.

The B.O.B. has several restaurants, several bars, a club, pool tables, etc. I really liked the concept and the layout. The place was pretty big but it seemed like everywhere we went there were people who recognized me. Everybody was polite for the most part, but it was that night that I had probably the strangest picture request yet.

Some dude claiming to be my “biggest fan” asked if he could take a picture with me. Of course I agreed and he snapped one. Unfortunately the light wasn’t that good where we were so he asked if we could try again. Only this time somewhere that was well lit.

Now get this- he looks around the bar and finally says, “Oh dude the light in the bathroom would be perfect.” At this point I’m like, “What the @$@??! Are you serious?” It just seemed kind of creepy, going to the bathroom for a picture?

I felt like that request was a little much, but the guy was a friend of Lori’s friend who assured me that the guy wasn’t a weirdo or anything. So we took the picture but that’s the last time I think I’ll honor a request like that one. That’s a little much I think.

So anyway we all were having a good time and head over to the VIP section. It was a private party and I didn’t know anyone there but we were invited so, “What the hey.” It was getting late by that point and I really needed to hit a bathroom. Not for a picture or anything, just cause I had to go.

As I was headed that way, this big dude motioned to me and called out my name. Big dude didn’t do him justice- how about mammoth. A Left Tackle for some team I forgot, he was like 6’ 5” and right around 320 lbs. Huge.

So he says to me, “I’m a Canadian boy too” which he proved by showing me his Ontario license plate. “Have a drink with me.”

“Oh I don’t really do shots man but thanks.” I replied.

“Hey come on, have a shot you’ll like it.”

“Ok, but seriously I have to go to the bathroom and I’ll be right back.”

“Drink first, you can go to the bathroom later.”

“No really man, I’m about to burst. I promise I’ll be back.” He ignores that and orders two drinks. “What is in that?” I asked.

“It’s a Jaeger Bomb.”

“I’ve never had a Jaeger Bomb.”

“Drink it, you’ll like it.”

So now I see this little shot and figure that my bladder can handle it. One quick shot and then I’ll head to the bathroom. Just then the bartender takes that shot and drops it in a bigger glass and pours some other concoction on it. Now I’m staring at this full glass of liquid and my bladder now goes into shock. “Chug it” he tells me. Chug it? I can’t chug water let alone alcohol.

It became pretty obvious to me by now though that this guy didn’t take no for an answer. I could have put a beating on him but I figured I’d be a nice guy and not start anything. “Ok, I’ll try but I won’t be able to finish it all in one gulp. “You’ll finish it and you'll like it” he tells me.

Ok here goes… gulp, gulp, gulp. I did it! I couldn’t believe it. I had no idea how I got all that down, but my only guess is that he scared me into it. So I thanked the bohemian and was headed towards the bathroom, when from the other side of the bar I hear, “Hey Negrano let me buy you a drink! Come on man, come have a drink with us.” Oh my, I could see where this was all going. Thankfully so did Lori’s sister’s husband and he escorted me to the exit.

Overall it was a fun time and ending the night when we did was probably for the best. Besides, I wanted to get home to my little Mushu.


**Trivia answer: Big Old Building**… I know, who knew it would be that simple right?

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