NYC Card Rooms, No Rake, the Rooster and Razz
Bob and I didn't quite make it to Atlantic City this past weekend. We originally had plans to go to AC and meet up with a bunch of bloggers there. We had some time constraints because Bob had to work on Saturday so we decided to stay in New York City. Plus, BigMike's mom died so it seemed like it was best to stay in NYC and go to the card room in Chinatown again.
I got up late on Saturday and hit the online poker tables right away. I had a bad session on Friday and was looking to recoup some of those loses. Thankfully I made most of it back! As soon as Bob was done working, he called and we made plans to meet up with F Train and his friend SoxLover in front of Macy's on 34th Street.
I was running late as usual. I spoke to Joaquin prior to jumping on the subway. I told him of our plans and he agreed to meet us at the card room later in the night. Ferrari was also planning on meeting us at the card room. On my way to the subway, some middle aged toothless woman who hadn't bathed in days hit me up for some change or a "smoke." I gave her a cigarette and took off down the street. She called out and asked where I was going. I replied, "Nowhere with you toots!" I'm not vain but I do require that my women have teeth so I blew her off. My kidneys and my bankroll were very happy with my decision.
I made my way to subway platform. Some guy was passed out, drooling on himself with a loaf of bread between his legs. There was no jam or jelly in sight. Thank goodness. Now, if this guy had a few bucks or some oxycotin in his pocket, I could've introduced him to a nice toothless woman. Timing is everything!
As soon as the subway made its way from the Bronx to Harlem, the smells changed from the fresh scent of powerful cleaning agents to garbage to urine to the foul stench of someone who hasn't showered in months (think Phish show). lol. I knew I was in for a seedy and sketchy evening. Either way, I was ready to gamble!
I arrived at Macy's and met up with Bob, F Train and SoxLover. The streets were crowded as hell and I was wasted and hungry. We decided to grab some grub first. We headed down to Little Italy to grab some food. The streets were crowded with tons of tourists. Cars could barely nagivate through the streets. On our way to track down the perfect eatery, we saw a Camaro driving through the crowd on Mulberry Street. The license plates read, "All N." lol.
We picked a restaurant and sat outside. The weather was much better this weekend than last. It was breezy and I liked it! We drank some wine and chowed down on some good food before heading to the nearby card room in Chinatown. Chinatown is a crazy place to be. The smell down there is also quite lovely especially after years of selling seafood, fireworks, assorted "other" meats and not being able to contain stumbling drunks from pissing on the streets. See, OTB isn't the only place that has it's problems!
I was surrounded by criminals, tourists, bloggers, Tony Soprano wannabees, and a bunch of old Chinese ladies sitting on a stoop, yet our waiter Roberto was the sketchiest person around. He had that Scientology look. Know what I mean? lol. After our meal, Roberto almost tackled us while we were walking down the street. He was yelling something about us signing the wrong receipts. I thought SoxLover was going to punch him!
We headed towards the card room in Chinatown. Bob and I went there last week and we were treated very warmly because we were friends with the newest internet celebrity, F Train. The owners and dealers were excited because F Train wrote a review of their card room. Last week, they gave Bob and I some ID's. We are official members!!
F Train was joking about the bouncer before we even got there. He wasn't there last week when Bob and I went. Supposedly, he was a large, bald Russian giant named Boris or Nikolai. We rang the door bell and smiled for the cameras. Nikolai opened the door and said, "What! Can I help you?" We flashed our ID's and he reluctantly let us in. Boris was huge. He looked like a WWF wrestler all BALCO'd up.
Later on in the night, he would calmly tell Ferrari to sit in a proper manner. The card room got real quiet after he spoke. You could hear a dime drop. Everyone was wondering if Nikolai was going to snap and kill Ferrari. Thankfully, the dealer cracked a joke and everything went back to normal.
As we looked around the card room, SoxLover mentioned that some guy named Alfonse was sitting at the 1/2 NL table. He supposedly played on the cable show that Party Poker hosted called "NY vs Boston." I've never seen it, so I had no clue who he was. He looked like some old FISH to me. We were in Chinatown, right?
We asked the owners if they could spread a mixed game table for us and they did. They even agreed to not take a rake. They didn't take a rake for a few hours too. Very cool. We started to wonder when Joaquin would show up. Then, one of the cocktail waitresses walked by and told us that Joaquin was upstairs watching TV. lol.
We got Joaquin and started our game. One of the owners decided to play with us. Someone asked if we could play Razz (3/6). They agreed. The owners immediately got on the phone to tell Teddy KGB that hell had frozen over . . . . . the club was spreading a Razz game! As Joaquin said to me, "We popped their cherry and christened the joint." Some buzz began to go around the club that some fools errr bloggers wanted to play some Razz. We welcomed the snickers and chuckles from the peanut gallery. Time to gamboool!!!
Ferrari showed up a few hands in and was laughing when he heard we were playing Razz. I like Razz and I know F Train does too so I was hoping to win some money here but unfortunately I didn't. Brick after brick! Oh well. Joaquin aka "the Rooster," didn't back down from anyone in Razz. He took down a few big pots and we were off! In one hand, Joaquin came out firing with a K high showing! Ferrari was pretty much heads up with Joaquin most of the way. After a few betting rounds, Joaquin had a K and a T showing. Ferrari had a J high showing. I was kidding Joaquin the whole way about his A2 down. The betting was ferocious. Raises and reraises all the way down. When it was all over, Ferrari flipped over 6543A. Most of it was showing too. The board looked horrible for the Rooster but Joaquin turned over 6542A and he rivered the 2!! lol. This was just the beginning for Ferrari. He was smoked on the river all night long. Countless times, he had the best hand and lost.
As soon as I called Omaha 8, another one of the owners jumped in to play. How funny is that!! They loved our game selection plus they weren't even taking a rake. This place was pretty cool. They'll get you anything you want too. They even leave the club and get food for you. You can't beat that.
We also made our rounds through 3/6 Stud and 4/8 Limit Hold'em. Soon enough, the other tables started to break up so we agreed to play 1/2 NL to accomodate some of the players joining our table. F Train and SoxLover did really well and cleaned up. Some kid at one of the other tables had a stack over $1500 in red chips. Supposedly, he took most of it from that guy Alfonse. lol. Too bad they both left before we got a chance to take their chips. That would have been fun!!!
I lost a big pot to SoxLover. It was three way and I had KT. With the board, I had K's and 9's. So did one of the club regulars. He reminded me of the Comic book guy from the Simpsons. He had a fanny pack on too. I suspected I was in trouble. I thought I was outkicked. SoxLover didn't raise preflop so I didn't put him on a high pocket pair let alone quads. As soon as the betting was over, he asked if quad 9's were good. lol. Me and Comic book guy mucked. Damn!!
I cashed out for the night even. I did best in Omaha and NL. I got AK 6 times in NL and won every time. Unbelieveable, right? I can't remember the last time it held up for me that many times without losing. Stud and Razz kicked my ass. SoxLover cleaned up Saturday night and Ferrari kept getting rivered. Ferrari wanted us to stop dealing the cards after the turn. lol.
I had a blast playing with everyone. The NYC blogger card room visit could be a new outlet for deviant behavior and bad gambling hijinks. Hopefully, Bob had a great time. He got to piss in a stairwell and he has a new picture ID card to one of the swankiest and cleanest card rooms in NYC (the only sketchy thing is the 2nd door in the bathroom . . . was Boris' cousin behind it with a shotgun?).
After the tables closed down for the night, we all headed home. No one lost big which was good. A few of us won big. Nikolai didn't strangle anyone. He played backgammon all night and helped one of the owners 4 table it on Empire. lol.
On my way home, I decided to take a cab back to the Bronx instead of roughing it with the subways rats. When I get into cabs, I have a habit of looking at the cabbies license to see his/her name. I was expecting an Arab or an Indian guy but the cabbies' name was Ivan! lol. Ivan, my Russian cab driver asked, "Where to, my friend? I'll take you wherever you want so long as you have the money to pay. I took some coked up whore to Queens earlier and she had no money. Fuck that shit, bro. You pay, I play!"
I told him that I have enough cash to get me back home so we took off. I had to piss really bad and Ivan was yapping the entire way down the Major Deegan Expressway. By the time we got to Yankee Stadium, I wanted to get out and hitch my way home. At some point, I blurted out that my doctor told me that I wouldn't have so many nose bleeds if I kept my fingers outta there. DEAD silence. Thank you! We arrived at my place and I paid the man. He thanked me and asked if I knew where he could find a nice lady friend at this hour. I told him that I might have an idea. I pointed to the bar across the street where I saw the toothless woman earlier in the evening. He parked his car and went in. I took off laughing down the street wondering if snaggle tooth was still around.
I had to piss really bad and I couldn't make it upstairs so I pissed on the street. I was hoping to make it to my building stairwell (ah, the memories), but it was probably best that I didn't. There was no one around so I went on the sidewalk. Ahhhhh . . . it was quite refreshing I must say. Gross, but very much needed. I soon began to wonder how you could possibly contain a stumbling drunk from pissing on the street in the Bronx, or anywhere for that matter, let alone in Chinatown? How about a well lit sign? That might do the trick, eh. Maybe not!