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Daniel - Poker Journal

Why does anyone live in LA?

19 Feb 2005

I just don't get the traffic in LA. Whoever designed the highways in LA had to be the dumbest guy on the planet. On every highway people are merging to get on and merging to get off all within a one mile radius. No subway system to speak of and congested highways make living in LA unbearable for a guy like me. If I had to live in LA I think I'd eat, sleep, and breathe road rage. It's insane.

I planned on flying out to Burbank the night before the tournament but couldn't find any later flights. So instead I booked an 11:45am departure that would have me landing at the Bob Hope airport by 12:50pm. More than enough time to check into my hotel, shower, change, unwind, and make it to the Commerce for the 3:30pm start time.

So much for that plan. It rained for about 10 minutes this morning in Vegas which usually means the whole airport shuts down, but "luckily" for me it was only an hour delay.

I didn't get to Burbank until close to 2:00pm. The drive in a normal city from the Burbank airport to the Commerce is about 11 minutes. In LA when it's raining? Try an hour and a half.

It was pretty clear that Jennifer and I weren't going to be able to check into the Wyndam and also make the tournament so we head straight to the Commerce. On the way, I was losing my mind- honking like a madman for no particular reason, banging my head against the steering wheel, and shouting at the top of my lungs, "I HATE TRAFFIC!" Jennifer had to be a real trooper to put up with me.

We finally rolled in at right around 3:30pm and I was in my seat for the first hand. Took my secret vitamin, grabbed a disgusting slice of cheese pizza from the snack bar and I was ready to rumble.

I noticed a film crew there from CBS that I was supposed to interview with at 11:30am, but obviously I couldn't have made it. So, we scheduled the interview for the dinner break at 7:00pm. Only problem with that was that I'd also have to drive over to the Wyndam, check in, and then drive back.

So that's what I did and made it back in the nick of time. The whole day proved to be a high stress situation but I think I handled it well. I had my chips up to 22,000 at the dinner break but after that I just never really had anything good happen.

Going into the very last limit of the night I had 11,400 but still felt great about my chances. Kudos to the Commerce for an awesome blind structure, one that should be MANDATORY in any 10,000 buy in event. With 10,000 in starting chips, the structure looked like this:

25-50
50-100
100-200
100-200 (25 ante)
150-300 (50)
200-400 (50)
300-600 (75)
400-800 (100)
500-1000 (100)
600-1200 (200)
800-1600 (200)
1000-2000 (300)
1200-2400 (400)
1500-3000 (500)

That is a far cry from the ridiculous structure we saw in Tunica in January that saw the old 300-600, 500-1000, 800-1600 jump. My hats off to the Commerce once again for giving the players what they want.

The structure is what allowed me to hang in there late on day one with a short stack. I finally went broke with my last 5250 against Freddie Deeb when my pair and flush draw couldn't outdraw his two KK.

Oh well, I was extremely happy with the way I played today. Despite getting eliminated on day one I think it was one of the better sessions I've played all year. If I continue to play like that the breaks will come and I'll get there again real soon.

So now I have some free time in LA and may use the next few days as a much needed vacation. I'll probably go visit my good buddies Regev and Oren and reminisce about simpler times.

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