About Me in Poker

I liked poker from a very young age.  At the age of 12 (in 1960), one of my best friends and I used to play heads-up 7-card stud for nickels and dimes.  We played every Saturday afternoon, which just happened to be payday, not to mention our first day off from school.  Payday was every Saturday for both of us and we were never so glad to receive our $2 allowance.  Before or sometimes after our poker game, we would play softball in the park down the street from our houses, but our favorite time was poker time.  We really enjoyed our weekly poker session.  Sometimes I would win all or most of my friend’s allowance and sometimes it would be the other way around.  The winner would graciously treat the other to chocolate bars and pop at our local candy store.  This was our “little” tradition.  Thanks to my big brother who taught me 7-card stud, I would more often be the one treating my friend, more than him treating me.  Most often, the winner would still have money left over for spending money during the following week.  I would often feel a little sorry for my friend, sorry that he was broke until payday, but I learned early, better him than me.

I played poker with my friends throughout high school and as years went by, my passion for poker continued to grow.  I kept playing with my friends in home games and I kept winning, certainly not every time, but more often than not.  The games were usually on Friday nights, after we all were finished work.  At that time I was working at Crawley Films, a motion pictures film lab, in Ottawa.

After my job at Crawley Films, I was working at CKCO TV in Kitchener.  We had some real good poker games back then, mostly dealer’s choice games.  Every Friday night, the game would be hosted by one of our group of eight players.

Within a few years, I was working in a news film lab at Global TV in Toronto.  I was the lab manager and had things working so well that I often had time to play poker with the news cameramen and one of the anchormen.  We used to play in a large Winnebago that was parked in the Global TV parking lot.  These games were also real good games.  After all these years, I was still winning.  In fact, these games accounted for a substantial amount of my income.

One of the best things to happen to me in my entire life, happened in 1978.  I met my future wife.  From the moment we met until this day, we are best friends.  When she found out that I liked to play poker and was a winner at the game, she said, “Ok, teach me everything you know”.  She learned very quickly and became my “poker buddy”.  In the fall of 1978 we both played Texas Hold’em for the first time.  Our first experience with hold’em was in a $1-$2 game at the Palace Station in Las Vegas.  My wife fondly remembers winning $100 in that game, naturally she thought this “hold’em poker” was quite all right.   To this day we both like hold’em more than any other poker game.

In 1983, I accepted a job as an Electronics Technician with the Canadian Coast Guard near Prescott, Ontario.  Naturally, I made sure that I found the local poker games.  I accomplished this by advertising at the local hotel that I was hosting a 7-card stud tournament at my house.  Only one guy showed up, but he happened to be one of a bunch of guys who often played poker in the area.  My wife and I decided to start hosting a weekly dealer’s choice game.  The guy who we met at our house that night and his friends played at our game for a few years.  During those years I also started playing in a few poker clubs that had opened in Ottawa and Cornwall.  Subsidizing my income continued over many years and the games, as usual, certainly were great games.

Early in 1989, a wonderful thing happened.  A privately owned casino opened its doors on the Akwesasne Indian Reservation near Massena N.Y.  This casino was located one hour from our house.  I, still working for the Coast Guard, would frequently drive there with my wife after work.  We would play Texas Hold’em at the smallest limit available.  This limit just happened to be $25-$50.  We played often and we did extremely well, the games were unbelievable.  Anyone who played in those games would tell you that these games were some of the best games they had ever seen.  They certainly were good to us.

Late in 1989, a very sad thing happened.  Due to constant refusal to get rid of their slot machines, the casino at Akwesasne was shut down.  There is a long story that goes with what happened during that time, but unfortunately too long to go into here.  For my wife and myself, this was a sad time for us.  Even though the poker games at the clubs and the home games continued, we lost a huge amount of our income due to the closing of our poker room at Akwesasne.

In 1994, I was offered a deal from the Canadian Coast Guard that involved taking early retirement.  The time was just perfect for my wife and I, so I gladly accepted.  Now it was time to play poker professionally.  We have been doing exactly that ever since.

For many years, we played in cardrooms across Canada and the U.S., including Las Vegas, Reno, Atlantic City, California, Mississippi, New York and Connecticut.  In fact, we would frequent Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut about two weeks out of every month.  We continued our trips to Foxwoods for a few years until an unfortunate accident happened.  This forced us to try online poker.  We started playing poker online in June 2001 and immediately realized the great opportunity available to us.  Since then, our traveling to poker games has become less and less.  We love playing online.

The more we play poker online, the more we realize just how convenient playing online is.  We save a lot of money annually by not having travel expenses (gas, hotel, food, parking, valet etc.).  The rake is normally cheaper online and we also save by not having to tip.  The games are normally much faster online and the nature of online poker makes getting into a game of our liking much easier than in a brick & mortar cardroom.  Online poker has so many benefits that we now prefer to play in cyberspace rather than having to travel to play.

Thanks to computers and the Internet and naturally, online poker, life is good in this little house by the St.Lawrence River.




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