Horseshoe Hammond WSOPC Days 2 and 3, ORD-LAX-SFO

Day two was an exciting roller coaster. I came into the day with momentum, and on the very first hand a dude limped at 1500-3k/500. Another older dude made it 13k with about 70k total, I started the day with 124k, AQo, the small blind, and said, “All-in.” The limper folded two eights, and the raiser called with AKo. Oops. Flp J8x, T, 9. GG sir, the toll roads thank you for your patronage (yah I know pretty sick right?) Next hand we open the button with AQo, call a shove from the small blind for like 40k, and lose to 44.

The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. I chipped up pretty steadily from there to about 450k, and then played another big pot. I open UTG with AQo, a guy flats in MP with 25 bbs, SB shoves 18bbs, I high five the dealer and say all-in, and the flatter calls within three seconds. What did I just get myself into? I still roll my AQ proudly, sadly see KK in the caller’s pocket, and say whoops when I see that the shover has AKo. Txx. Q. A. EZ game. Congrats on making the money. 4 tables left and we have 1m, good for fifth in chips.

Down to three tables I’m steamrollin. I’m opening way more than I should, everything’s working, and I steadily chip up to 1.5m. William Reynolds is on my left and I win like six of seven blind vs. blind battles out of position. I haven’t been three bet in a while, I know one is coming soon, and when it does I have the top of my range, KQo. I snap shove and the guy goes into the tank, 450k or so total. I feel like I’m flipping at worst, he finally calls with AQo, I feel slowrolled, flop a king, and he rivers an ace.
Next orbit in my big blind Jared in the small blind opens for 60k at 10-20/3k with 440k total, I find 9Tss and shove, he snaps (ty for the non slowroll) with AQo, flop Q87, brick, brick. I feel like the shove is standard, would have flatted if he opened to 50k or less and then gotten it in on the flop, so, whatevs. It’s been a long time since I’ve lost a million that quick but it sure was fun.

I chipped up to a little over 600k when I found AK and got it in vs two jacks 19 handed, hit a king on the turn, and doubled up. That carried me through the last 40 minutes of day two and I ended with 1.15m, good for 6th of 16 remaining.

That Saturday was Northwestern’s homecoming. Bill and his buds all went there, so they started tailgaiting around 9am for the morning game. When I finally met him at 3am he was hammered. Always fun showing up in the 18th hour of a party. I had two beers to unwind, made it to bed reasonably soon, and was up shortly after noon so I could shower and look good for the last day.

We drove down Lakeshore Drive, made it early, I took 10% of Bill’s cash game action, and we got the cards in the air. First hand I open KTdd in the hijack, Reynolds calls in the big blind, and the flop comes K67ssc. He checks. I decide to check. Turn is an offsuit 9, he bets pretty big, like 125k into 170k, which I obviously don’t like, but I’m not folding. Turn’s a red queen, he bets like 250k, sigh again, but I can’t really see folding because of how under repped my hand is.. I call and lose to KJ. Damn. I lose half my stack and am between 5 and 600k now, still 16 left.

I maintain that stack into the final 10, where I hover between 400 and 700k until we get down to 8 players. I chip up to 1.2m without seeing a flop by the time we’re at 7, and then with just under 1m I play this hand out of the big blind. In the hand before, the small blind lost most of his stack to Reynolds and was left with 180k at 30-60/10k. He folds his button, the SB limps with like 2.5m, and I find two kings in the big blind. I raise to 170k total. The SB, who should have shoved any two pre due to ICM with the guy on the button being so short, makes it 395k. I move all-in obviously, hating a bit the fact that he’s pretty much gotta call since it’s 555k more and he’s getting about 3-1 on his money. After about 2 minutes he does with 82cc. I ask the dealer to please not shove these kings up my ass, and he responds by putting out a flop of 842. The board bricks out and I bust 7th place for just under $36k, which is obviously a good three days work, but was the most depressing five digit score of my life due to taking the worst beat of my life to earn it. Obviously I sucked out twice awesomely in day 2 to get me there, but once you’re there and then lose an 85% favorite to bust, especially when one guy has three big blinds and there’s a $12k pay jump to 6th… I’ll never be in that spot again much less six more times to balance things out. There is no long term in tournament poker. Some people will run hotter over their lifetime than others.

Bill and I spent that evening chilling out in downtown Chicago and I was out the door by 9:20 the next morning with all my stuff, headed to the L. Red line South to Jackson, transfer to the Blue line, all the way to O’Hare. Back to LA, Karri picked me up, we went home and booked a flight to San Francisco the next day. Dull lives we lead. Giants made the World Series baby! They’re my favorite team, I’ve never been to a World Series game, Linscecum and Lee in game 1… obviously we’re going to that. It’s been a nice flight up and should be a fun few days in the Bay.

Peace and good luck,


Horseshoe Hammond WSOPC Main Event: Day One

I did a bunch of poker playing this week. Wednesday I grinded online for twelve hours. It’s been a super long time since I’ve done anything like that. I booked a small profit but was happy with the day overall considering the way things went.

Thursday it was much the same. Three hours online, was happy to book a $600 winner after starting that much in the hole one tabling over Cheerios. Ate a sandwich from Whole Foods. Made an almost two hour video for PokerVT going over the UB Perfect 10 NLHE freezeout I won on Monday. Went for a jog. Was sweating that one considering that three weeks ago I tried working out on my knee for the first time since I blew it May 3rd and it hurt. Like the not good hurt, got me to the doc who gave me drugs that I haven’t used. Anyway it felt strong which made me happy, my getting winded after a mile and a half pissed me off so I’ll have to fix that. I packed my running shoes and used them though, and for that I’m proud.

Bill made tacos and we watched the first few innings of the Giants game before getting back on the grind. I played a bunch of SNG’s and a 3-6 HORSE game, finally breaking my recent SNG curse to a close with my first victory in like 30 tries. Dropped my ROI 3% this month. After that we went to see Jackass 3D, and it’s possibly the funniest two hours of film I’ve ever seen. They’re brilliant, and idiots. I laughed myself to tears for much of the movie.

Friday I woke up early (defined as 11am away from the ranch), had Cheerios and hit the road with a cup of coffee headed to Hammond. I bought into the main on Tuesday, and good thing cause the line out the door was a mile long. It was a 90 min wait from when I got there. They ended up getting 872 runners for $1600 a pop. I’m not sure where this many people with that much money came from, perhaps they were taking buyins in livestock or something, but it’s one of the softest fields I’ve played in a long time. I was card dead all day, seeing JJ, 99, and four AK’s that I lost with in the first 15 levels. I steadily chipped up though all day and enjoyed playing tournament poker, until we busted all the I’ll never-3-bet-you but I’ll check-fold a lot players. They were replaced by a bunch of people who could find the raise button, notably Kevin Saul two to my left with 170k at 8-1600/200.

My 80k dwindled to 70k with one level left to play in the day. 1200-2400/500. 2nd or 3rd hand I call a 20k shove with A5ss in the blind and lose to A4hh. Ugh 48k, which is only 6m’s FFS, and there’s half an hour left in day 1. Bust me now and put me on a plane to my honey. I folded around to my next big blind, tick tock tick tock. Folds to the small blind who limps. I guess I should look so they know that I looked if they were paying attention, but it doesn’t matter, I could have two sugar packets that would be ruled dead at showdown and still shove.

He shows me A3o and folds.

Next hand a good spot to shove on opens to 5600, folds to my small blind I find A3o, and shove. He folds.

On my button, still stacking copious amounts of ante chips, a good aggressive player that I had three bet with T2o in this same spot several orbits earlier opens to 5k. I find aces (HOORAY!), make it 13,300, he folds.

Fold the next hand. Then, an old dude who had been snug with gross overbets shoves UTG for 40k+. I find two queens, have 75k, debate a little between calling and shoving, and decide to shove. The small blind tanks. Almost two minutes. I feel like he has TT, JJ, or maybe AK. He folds, claiming to have AK, the board runs out K high, and I bust A7dd. I’m still not sure what’s optimal there, but it worked out for us in this situation, course small blind had like 60k so it probably didn’t make a difference.

Yeah. I’m tired. It was a long day but I feel like a pig in shit after that end of the night heater giving me 123,900 headed into day two, resuming tomorrow at 1pm CST.

Peace and good luck,


My Kind of Town, Chicago Is

Karri and I walked outside at 5pm ready for the gala. She was lookin’ hot in a formal gown, I was feeling out of place in a tuxedo as she introduced me to DB Sweeney. I recognized the name and the face but had no idea from where. “When you’re in the presence of a legend and you’re unfamiliar with their body of work, you have to divert from that fact.” He likes toast too. Turns out he was the navigator in Memphis Belle, one of my favorite movies that Jared and I watched all the time as kids. The family of the soldier that just was awarded the Medal of Honor was also in the car, and we were driven over to the Navy Pier. Past the taxi line. Past the parking. Past the authorized vehicles only sign, past the “NO VEHICLES BEYOND THIS POINT” sign and some soldiers, and to the end of the pier where we were dropped off. They took a few pictures in front of a beautiful backdrop of the lake and Chicago skyline in magic hour and then walked inside.

There we went to Karri’s green room she was sharing with Bonnie Hunt to drop off stuff. It was guarded by a marine. Upstairs to the VIP reception where Karri and DB were whisked to the end of the red carped where they stood with Gary Sinise and Bonnie and took pictures with groups of people standing in a long line waiting to do so. I fetched Karri a Jack and diet. Way outta my element but I’m a good blender. Karri was then appointed a marine guard who followed us around for the entire evening. We offered him a drink and he declined.

After the VIP reception we entered the regular reception hall for cocktails, mingling, and a silent auction. We bid on a few lots of wine and lost. We offered our marine a drink and he declined. I met Admiral Mike Mullen. I met a lot of other neat people that could all individually have books written about them. I enjoyed taking it in and watching Karri be herself. We headed inside to our table, center stage second row, and watched the opening ceremony. Presentation of colors, National Anthem, invocation, speech, and the coast guard silent drill team. I was impressed nobody took a rifle butt or bayonet to the head. We ate, offered our marine a drink which he declined, heard a couple more speeches, and I was moved seeing the Gold Star families who had lost sons overseas. Gary Sinise who presented the USO Heart of a Patriot award to Karri last year introduced her who then presented it to DB. He gave a speech, and the ceremony was closed.

The Lieutenant Dan Band then took the stage with Gary at bass. Kick ass cover band 13 heads deep. The party kicked off, the night started getting blurry, we offered our marine a drink and he accepted, and somewhere around 2am we were leaving the hotel bar saying good night. That took us to the waterfront where we watched the golden leaves of fall float on the stagnant waters of the Chicago river blocked at Lake Michigan. It was beautiful though, Wrigley building reflecting on the water and giant rats running in the bushes behind us. But seriously it was beautiful.

Sunday I woke up intending on writing the blog that I was supposed to write on Friday and realized that I left my laptop charger in Las Vegas. Whooooopssss. That took me on a mission down Michigan Avenue to Best Buy past the gay/anti-war parade which I successfully returned from in 45 minutes. Plugged in, wrote, won a few bucks playing cash, and then went to Old Mother Hubbard’s to meet Bill and company for the Cowboys/Vikings game. Post game we launched a spontaneous Irish Pub crawl. The first two were accidental, but when the third was a block away we realized we had a theme. Ended the night at Dublin’s in the Viagra Triangle, then back on the waterfront.

Monday was a bummer because I had to put Karri back on an airplane. I lost a couple of buyins quickly in the morning getting kings shoved up my ass twice, we had lunch, and then I hitched a ride to Bill’s place in her car for O’Hare. Bye honey. Spent most of the night grinding at Bill’s, won a tournament, and still ended up stuck $5-600 on the day. I’ve been playing these UB Perfect 10 tournaments this month and have a score that’s 43rd overall and best amongst the other pros so far. Take that Hollywood Dave. I’ve got a 1st, 3rd, 8th, 14th, and 2 15th’s in my first 12 events. They’re soft you should try some.

Tuesday I woke up jonesin for some live poker. The Horseshoe in Hammond, IN is about half an hour away without traffic and in the midst of WSOPC prelims. I called down at 12:05 to inquire how late registration would be open for the $560 6max NLHE that just started.

“At least the first level.”
“At least? How long are the levels?”
“Half an hour. We generally close registration when people stop registering.”

LOL. I texted Nolan Dalla and he talked to Charlie and they said no problem come on down. I made it into the tournament by 1pm, lots of people registered after me, and that’s where bad things ended. The structure was great, the field was big, the venue was sweet and reminded me of the River Rock in Vancouver, the dealers and staff were competent, and I enjoyed my time there.

I didn’t enjoy the end of my tournament though, when I busted less than half an hour after a dinner break that I came off of with 61 bigs. First hand back it goes limp, limp, I make it 5500 in the sb at 500-1k/100 with AKo, fold, fold, and the 2nd limper shoves 36k total after about a minute. I snippity snap and lose a flip to his sevens. “I didn’t think you were that strong.” Obviously. I hate when you’re crushing their range and end up getting it in flipping and then losing. Couple orbits later I open the cutoff with 23k on his BB, he thinks for about 30 seconds and shoves with K8cc and makes a running club flush to beat my jacks. Back on the Skyway to downtown, tournaments can be so annoying sometimes.

Peace and good luck,


Travel to Chicago

The drive to LA was nice. I always enjoy that drive, but this one was awesomer than usual because I spent most of it with the top down enjoying perfect fall weather in the desert. I’m going on my fourth month straight of mid 80 degree weather and am not sick of it at all. I kinda want to keep chasing it.

After I arrived in LA we had dinner at Louise’s and then found out that Lars was in town from Dallas for an event at Fuller Seminary. We met him, one of his staff, and one of his former kids from Bel Air at Karri’s favorite little dive in Los Feliz. It was a pleasant surprise and nice to see him, and thanks to a random drunk girl at the bar I have some excellent material that I’ll get to use on him for a long time. She didn’t understand how he could move from So Cal to Dallas and was speculating why his wife let him.

Thursday was travel day. LAX to Chicago O’Hare first class, courtesy of American Airlines supporting the USO. Thank you. We were met by a greeter, one of those people with names on a sign that meet you at baggage claim. Her job was to smile, help us with bags, coordinate with and show us to the car. She wasn’t even the driver. I have no idea where she went after we hopped in the car for downtown Chicago.

We’re staying at the Hyatt, also free, tyty Hyatt and your support of the USO. The first time I was in this city it became my least favorite I’d ever been to. I also didn’t spend any time downtown. The next time I did and didn’t like it still – too congested, too cold and windy, gloomy. Meh. Then I was here last year and spent time on foot downtown with Bill in August, and that was awesome. And I’m digging it so far this time too. There’s a neat energy here at Michigan Ave and the river, unlike I’ve ever experienced in an American city. It reminds me a bit of Vancouver and Montreal and I love those cities as much as I can love an urban place. She has a dinner with USO peeps tonight and I’m going to go play with Bill, then the big gala is on Saturday.

Peace and good luck,


Fun Weekend on the Grind

Saturday morning I slept in a bit because I didn’t want to play 50-100 with 10k starting stacks in the Festa $1k O8 tourney. I made it to the Bellagio and at a table by 1pm, just inside the 2nd level. I had Scott Clements on my left, which is always good for fun but not good for stacks since he’s the best in the world. By the second break Scott and I had less than 6k combined. It was a good table in a good field and neither of us could win a thing. I busted somewhere around 5:30 or 6, was somewhat out of dollars in my Bellagio box so decided to head over to the Venetian for a cash game.

The must move game I started in was the nuts. I was making great calls and good bets and up $1k without a sweat before getting moved to the main game. I wasn’t too excited about this since my friend Bryan Andrews just quit it to go see about a game at the Hard Rock. Apparently there was some guy making it $300 pre every hand dark Friday night and he said he was coming back tonight.

There was a ton of money on the table. Over $50k in 9 seats, including the $2500 I had sitting in front of me. It took me about an orbit to realize that this game was completely batshit. In the two hours before I got any substantial money into a pot I watched one dude lose $10k. This 5-10 game in that first orbit after I sat down turned into a round of straddles that flowed directly into mandatory straddle. A guy came from the must move game, refused to straddle, so we turned it into a 5-10-20 game. Which got straddled often enough too, and 5-10-20-40 is a big game.

Two hours into the main game I was $2300 deep. The cutoff, a solid player playing very well opened to $70. The guy who had punted $10k already called the button, and it folded to me in the middle blind. I had AKo and made it $420. Initial raiser folded, the guy made it $1400, I instantly shoved, he asked how much and then called within about five seconds. The board ran out bricks. I said, “No pair…” He responded, “Ten high.” Sweet ship the double up. Next orbit I’m in the biggest blind and check my option five ways with pocket treys. Flop QcJs3c. SB bets $80 into $100, middle blind folds, I make it $250, the bettor (solid dude) calls and everybody else folds. Turn a red king. He checks, I bet $500, he calls. River a brick, he checks, I bet $900 which I think is probably a little small but I didn’t think he was terribly strong and wanted to get paid by KT and the like. He called and my hand was good. Played another hand against the guy, same spot as before. Cutoff made it $70, guy called, I made it $550 with two kings. By this point my stack was like $6k and I realized that the guy didn’t like folding pre-flop so I gassed it for value. Cutoff folded, he called. Flop QJX rainbow. I checked, he checked. Turn an eight, putting two hearts out there. I checked, he bet a canary ($1k chip), I called. River the king of hearts, a curious card indeed. I checked, he bet another canary, I called and beat his AKss.

By that time I was 450bbs deep and thirteen hours into play for the day. I had been slowly drinking Bud Light for the last four hours in the spirit of the game. I then witnessed an amazing hand. Small blind (solid player) makes it $70. The guy, in the middle blind, calls as does the big blind. Flop 234r. SB bets $100, the guy makes it $330, and the big blind who is also solid makes it $660. The initial raiser folds and the guy calls. Turn a queen putting two hearts out there. The guy checks, BB bets $1200, and the guy calls. River another queen, and after about ten seconds the guy shoves for a total bet of $6800 and change. Holy shit.

I just went wooooooow. Pretty clear that our hero doesn’t have a boat since he goes into the tank. After about five minutes he turns up A5 for the flopped wheel. Three minutes later he finally says, “Alright, I call.”

“Nice call,” said the guy plain as day. He then talks about how he was gonna leave but now he has to stay, asks our hero if he’s gonna stay, he says about an hour so the guy says he’ll stay an hour. But I’m exhausted. I’m really not thinking clearly or focused at all. I would shit myself if put in that spot. Against much of my desire I pried myself out of the game, not willing to make a mistake super deep in a big, hyper-aggressive game. Drove home with the top down and an extra $7360 in my pocket. Felt damn good.

Sunday was online play. Nothing exciting happened. Made a few bucks in cash games on UB.

Monday I woke up in time to go tuxedo shopping before the $1k NLHE Festa event at the Bellagio. I’ve never owned a tuxedo before mostly because I haven’t had a reason to wear one since prom my freshman year of college. Yeah I said it. Karri has half a dozen black tie events a year and renting a tuxedo sucks, so I had no problem spending $500 on something that I would have rented for $100 at least once. They are professionals though at the Men’s Wearhouse and got me for $830 out the door. Three ties, one shirt, one vest, one tux, one stud set, and two pocket silks. Over to the Bellagio, get sat at an awesome table, quickly chip up to 12k, and then can’t win a hand. I finally get in with JThh on 442hh vs two black eights and lose. I sit in an awesome 5-10 cash game, win one $3400 pot with JTss making a flush and value shoving the river on a paired board. I lost every other hand though and quit stuck over a nickel.

Today I intended on playing the $1k limit event. Woke up at noon feeling groggy, slept til 1:30, called the Bellagio and heard that they only had 27 runners, and laid there wondering what I was going to do with the day besides get ready to leave town. My first black tie event is this weekend in Chicago. Last year Karri won the USO Heart of a Patriot award, this year she’s giving it away and I’m her date. About that moment Jared called, wanting to borrow one of my rifles so he could blow up a television with a bomb he bought at a gun show. Yeah come over.

They obviously talked me into going and me made it into the desert shortly before dusk. The bomb was offensively unexciting, but we could have just been doing it wrong. The first hit was a nick so just made a small flash. The second was solid and made a big bright flash, but no boom or destructive television force we were hoping for. There’s totally a market for quality explosives out there, I’m surprised nobody’s tapped it yet. If only we had a quality product to shoot so the damn television actually exploded. Shot some video hopefully it’s fun. I drive to LA tomorrow and then we fly to Chicago on Thursday, first class courtesy of American Airlines. Alright :).

Peace and good luck,


LA, Vegas, and a Live Tournament?!?

Wednesday afternoon I took Karri to the Santa Monica airport, dropping her off at Trisha Yearwood’s private jet. Trisha greeted me with a hug and then gave me a tour of the plane (WHAT THE FFFFFFFF LOOOOOOL CAN’T BELIEVE THIS IS HAPPENING I LIVE IN TENTS FFS LOOOOOOL). It was the most badass thing I’ve ever seen. Tail numbers with golf-tango for Garth and Trisha, big enough that you could stand up inside the cabin with headroom, and done completely in this amazing blonde wood paneling. I want one. Good luck kid. Yeah who am I kidding I’ll be thrilled with a Cessna.

I heard that they have a lot of money at the Commerce held by people who don’t like it very much. I drove over there at 5pm and somehow hit almost no traffic coming across the 10 to the 5 South. I left about four hours later, and those players in the 10-20 games have about $1500 more to disdain. 3 games, they were good, but I couldn’t make better than X high and they didn’t fold so I gave up. Booked a flight back to Vegas and was on it early the next afternoon.

Southwest Airlines is awesome. Change flights? Bags? No problem. Sit where you want. Cheap rates. I love it. Made it to the airport and through security early enough to catch an earlier flight out of Burbank and they put me on the plane in seconds. Went to the car, drove home, and fired some of UB’s Perfect 10 promotional tournaments. Every day they’re running 10 $10 and $3 tournaments. At the end of the month your top ten best finishes in any of those 310 tournaments make up your point total and they’re giving away a bunch of money in the process. They’ve asked for pro involvement and tagged a little incentive onto the best performance. I want to win. After my 2nd session yesterday, like 8 tournaments in on each side, I have a 3rd, 8th, 15th, and two 16ths in the $10 department and nothing exciting on the small side. Fields have been like 200 for the $10′s and 300+ for the $3′s.

After a long session and multiple distressing beats I quit up somewhere under $500, walked to my neighborhood bar for dinner and a beer, then chilled out at home for the rest of the night. Friday was the start of Bellagio’s Festa al Lago series, and I was excited to get my paws into a live tournament for the first time since the main event.

I showed up bright eyed and bushy tailed, Cheerios in my belly, and took my seat amongst a field of hardly anybody I recognized. I only had seen the two seat around. That was quickly shattered when Scott Clements took the one seat, and although he’s one of the best he’s also one of the best guys on tour. I like Scott and was glad we could catch up (and that he was on my right). Then Allie Prescott showed up and took the three seat, and it turned into a party. GG focus. We start 4 way props for $20 units, each of us took a suit. If two showed up you collected 1 unit from everybody, and if you nailed a monotone flop in your suit you were collecting $100 a man. Turns out that happens about 5% of the time, thanks Google. On rainbow flops, if your suit is absent, then you pay each man one unit. Coronas were ordered.

I busted about an hour later. I left with 19 $20 bills. I never hit a monotone flop in my chosen suit of diamonds. I had raised out of the blinds over a bunch of limpers three of my last four opportunities, this time the chronic limper decided to re-raise, and I decided that I wasn’t folding tens. Wrong decision he had aces. Oh well, went to the poker room, took an empty seat in a 40-80 mix game that was goooood, and ran baaaaaad.

I hit my low point about 5 hours later stuck $2200, quit 3 hours after that only down $500. I made a couple of mistakes that I frustrated myself with, but I certainly ran awfully too. Happy it didn’t end a disaster I headed home and am getting ready for the $1k O8 tomorrow.

Peace and good luck,


The Girl and Vegas

Saturday was the big day for the Darius Goes West charity poker tournament. I was excited but very much concerned about the venue. The Hard Rock underwent some transition in the past couple of months, moving from the 18 table poker lounge to an 8 table poker room just outside the pit, next to Wasted Space. The dude Troy that I dealt with was no longer around and the people involved had no idea what was going on. They couldn’t find the contract we signed (unfortunately neither could I), they had no record of the deposit I made, and they basically denied every promise that they made to us back in April. They didn’t promote anything, they lost our signage, they stood us up for a walkthrough, and overcharged the shit out of us. Needless to say they won’t be getting my poker business ever again and I’m pretty sure that Lisa won’t be hosting an event there ever again. Due to these things and a bunch of people being out of town the turnout was disappointing, and there was some miscommunication that frustrated people, myself included.

Besides all that, most of the people there had a great time and we raised some money for a cause that I believe in. We can cure Duchenne’s in my generation and I’m going to do everything I can to have that dream realized. I learned a bunch this year and things will be different next year. After the event was over Karri and I went home with my three new pieces of art won in the silent auction and chilled out. Hours of conversation later the sun was starting to come up and we finally went to sleep.

She was supposed to leave Sunday evening. It took about one sentence to convince her to reschedule the flight to Monday. Flying out of Vegas on Sunday is for the masochists only. With a full day ahead we went to the lake, intent on Kingman Cove on the Arizona side. We aborted that plan when we saw the line of cars extending past the Hacienda. It would have taken an hour to get through the Dam traffic. The bridge is complete and I think they’re supposed to open the new highway soon and it can’t come soon enough. We went to the old standby, Sail Beach on the Nevada side.

Turns out that the lake level has dropped faster in the last two weeks than it ever has before. It’s dropped about 30 feet in the four years I’ve lived here, perhaps more, and is down over 130 feet from its high point twelve years ago. Lake Mead is the water source for Las Vegas valley. Back in 06 they (maintenance staff and park rangers) said that it would take a bunch of years of above average snow pack in Colorado to bring the water level back up. We had that in 07, 08, and 09, and it dropped every year. The old intake spot is almost out of water now… it was designed to suck from the bottom of the lake, now it’s taking in algae and whatever else grows on the surface. Solution? Turn the lake into a bathtub. They’ve invested over six billion ($6,000,000,000) into a project that drills a hole down into the ground, out under the lake, and up to make a basin like a tub to more effectively drain the water out of the reservoir. What happens when the lake runs out of water? Clearly the population level of Las Vegas is unsustainable, especially when we’ve dilapidated over 15% of the water in the past dozen years with above average snow packs in our water sources.

Anyway, since the level has dropped so rapidly while I’ve been gone, turns out the bogs extend much deeper into the shoreline than they have ever before in my experience. I generally drive about thirty feet off the water looking for a good spot to park, and driving across rocks as usual I said, “Oh shit…” Karri looked at me funny as the truck buried itself in mud. Up to the engine compartment on the front end in mud, on solid ground at the ass end. Too bad that side was irrelevant since it was weightless (being a truck), we had to depend on the 4WD to get us out. It didn’t. “Now what?” she asked. “I have triple A.”

“Sweet, call em,” I said.

“Uhh… then what?”

“Then we have a cocktail.”

I mean, we got stuck in the mud on the shore of an awesome lake at a great time of day with perfect weather. Of all the places in the world to get stuck, I think we picked the best one. We plopped out a chair, poured a jack and diet and cracked a beer, and watched the sun set. Unfortunately the tow company took a bit longer than expected, but again… of all the places to get stuck, I can think of worse.

We eventually got winched out after dark, headed into Boulder City to grab dinner, and didn’t have enough so returned to our original mission: Kingman Cove, this time for a campfire. Love that place, we went, enjoyed it, and I drug her kicking and screaming out of the place at 1:30 am. Her flight was at 2:15pm Monday. She didn’t want to leave. I didn’t want her to leave. “How bout I come with you?”


Yes. As I write this from Los Angeles. Didn’t want her to leave. So I went with her. Cause she had to. Tomorrow she has to get outta town and I’ll head back to Vegas, but it has been nice to extend this visit a few more days.

Peace and good luck,