Check out the trailer for “Living the Life”, an up-and-coming poker reality TV series starring the beautiful Trishelle Cannatella from “The Real World” & Amanda Kimmel from “Survivor”. It is produced by a Canadian company, Running Hooks Pictures, whose CEO is a fellow poker player, Josh Kimmel. I’m not in the trailer but I do make a cameo in the pilot 🙂
Xuan thanks those who contributed to her team’s St. Jude fundraising campaign and qualifies for WBCOOP 2013 by sharing her best moment on PokerStars!
It is a rather long video, so I would understand if you jump to
1:39 for my WBCOOP story, “My best moment on PokerStars” or
6:46 to see me pick the winners for my St. Jude fundraising contest
I finally made it back to Toronto on attempt #3 after doing one of these on #2:
I won’t be around to play the WBCOOP main (I will be en route to APPT Seoul!), but I still wanted to share my experience as a poker player and blogger.
I submit my entry for WBCOOP 2013 by telling the tale of my years between 2007-2009. Highlighted by WoW degeneracy, grinding SNGs, live cash games, WPT satellites, almost giving up on the dream, studying for the CFA, and finally winning a Battle of the Planets triple shootout to renew my passion for poker.
Once again, a big thank you for those who helped with my St. Jude campaign, and congrats to Zhihao Zhang, Ian Modder, Christian Harder, and Jen Shahade for winning an hour of my time! I will cook, clean, teach…you name it!
Xuan’s St. Jude Donation Page – You’re the best!
Thanks for stopping by! In this post I am utilizing the powers of social media for a good cause. As you may or may not have already seen or heard, the incredible Daniel Negreanu has reached out to his followers and fans for donations to St. Jude Children’s Hospital and Research Center, which he will then be matching dollar for dollar up to $50,000. We are on the same fundraising team, but since I am not balla like that, I am proposing to donate my time for those who are kind enough to help out.
I will select 1 person for every 5 $100+ donations randomly to offer an hour of my time. This could be used towards a poker lesson, my treat on a simple lunch, chatting on Skype, Yoga class, learning golf, whatever. If you don’t want to the prize please let me know. You can also donate anonymously and still leave a note as to whether you’re interested in entering the draw.
Why St. Jude? Why Now?
As a poker player I justify the fact that I earn money doing something that contributes nothing directly back to society by creating space in my life to make a positive difference. Whether that means reaching out to people and incredible organizations or having a connected conversation at the table, I think it’s important to show my appreciation and live a life of gratitude.
I am involved with a great team of people in which we have spent weeks together working on multiple personal and social challenges. We are concluding our legacy by attempting to raise $100,000 in 7 days. My personal goal is $3000.
St. Jude is one of the best causes I am aware of. I am not always a fan of blindly giving to charities, but through my research and involvement with the local chapter of the hospital I have no doubt as to the integrity of their fundraising and the efficacy of the work they do. Here are some facts from their site:
“Thanks to donors, no family ever pays St. Jude for anything. Care, housing, transportation, meals—the list of services we provide to our families is unequalled. But it is for one purpose: To ensure the very best outcome possible for every child.”
“Every child saved at St. Jude means children saved around the world—a direct result of cutting-edge research and treatment that set the standard in treating childhood cancers. And our discoveries are shared freely with doctors and scientists all over the world.
“During the past five years, 81 cents of every dollar received has supported the research and treatment at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.”
Click Here to go to Xuan’s St. Jude Donation Page. Good luck with the contest!
If you would like more information please visit their site:
Here is Daniel Negreanu’s blog on this project:
We have until Feb 17.
Remember, anything helps. I will also be posting up the names of everyone who contributes in my next blog.
Thank you very much!
On a more poker-related note, I’m going to APPT Seoul March 14-17. Woohoo japchae and dukboki!
The Story So Far…
January 2012 kicked off with a bang as I became the first ever female PCA final tablist, and by December I had landed my first magazine cover for Poker Pro Canada. Everything in between was A-OK, with a few more final tables and memorable trips to here and there. With the support of my family, friends, Twitter followers, and fans, I feel triumphant and eager to dive into my poker career and any other projects on the horizon for 2013. A while ago I entertained the idea of posting video blogs to replace these written ones, hoping I would have more fun updating my site regularly. I recorded a bunch of footage in one sitting, but the editing process weighed me down so I pushed the endeavour aside until the post became outdated.
2013 came subtlety, and PCA was another great trip. This time I had my mom, stepdad, sister, and cousin with me to root me on. It was not as glorious as a deep finish in the main, but I still managed to make them proud with my picture on the billboard and a final table finish in the ladies event. It was nice to feel their support breathing down my neck.
Seriously though, I think everyone had a great time, which is what’s most important to me.
I am currently in Las Vegas overlooking the Strip as I sweat the results for Day 1 of the NBC Heads-Up tournament. For those unfamiliar, the event has a rich history dating back to 2005 as the first poker event to be televised and produced by a major American network. I don’t generally watch poker on TV, but it’s a lot of fun predicting winners for each bracket and sharing them with players, media, and fans while receiving live updates on my Twitter feed. My fun predictions below are based on 70% skill, 10% media-training, 10% momentum, 5% favouritism, and 5% superstition :). I don’t have money on this so I will be entertained either way, but I would like my room mate and good friend Scott Seiver to win. No introduction is necessary for his talents, and his TV presence and table talk would be very entertaining to watch.
The event field is a mix of top-ranked GPI players and players who are “good for poker.” I aspire to be one of those rare hybrids (like Scott) who has mad skill and is also a fine ambassador for the game. The reality is that the changing nature of the industry has gotten even the elusive Phil Ivey to monetize his name. Yes, he badly needs a new ghost Tweeter and Team Ivey recruiter, but the players who put themselves out there for public scrutiny are doing us all a favor. Not only do they keep the demand high and player pool fresh, it should be a pleasure watching them connect with people in profound ways simply by playing the game. Anyone with this gift should pass it along without insecurity or guilt.
Which leads me to my (unofficial) announcement: I will be on the next cover of WPT Magazine. I haven’t seen the photo yet, but I did the no carb thing for a week during WPT Montreal so it’d better look decent. I’ll probably be wearing a green strapless dress with my phonetic name in an Oriental-inspired font and my Chinese name attached horizontally on the side. Hopefully this will be just as good for the poker world as it will be for my self-esteem and my family’s honour. I hope my arms won’t look fat.
I know poker in Asia has been trying to expand for some time now, but I sincerely believe that 2013 will be a huge year for the game in China. I missed WPT China in Hainan in December, but I have been brushing up on my Mandarin skills in preparation for the market to break through. I can finally do an Asia backpacking trip and spend months away abroad playing poker, eating delicious food, and achieving inevitable enlightenment.
I’ve been travelling around the tournament circuit and playing MTTs online for about two years now. At first I was a doe-eyed wanderer, easily influenced and thirsty for knowledge. I had nothing to lose. After a while and some scores I became anxious and uncertain. What if I was just lucky? Surely it’s not time to celebrate results yet. Don’t become complacent, still a long way to the top. That is the goal, right? Work harder, become more cut-throat. It was hard to find peace, and little things started to bother me. I know these transitions are not unique to the poker world, but the intensity of the poker pro experience magnified the instability. I did not feel good about my assimilating identity, and I had trouble embracing the present.
I was skeptical and got dragged into attending a personal development/leadership program in Vegas. The experience is different for everyone, but for me it’s been a personal retreat to examine some of my personal flaws and untapped potential. I’ve always nurtured a desire for self-improvement and feel like I am more self-aware than most, but this program has really been critical in helping me visualize the kind of footprint I want to leave. Most importantly, it’s convinced me I shouldn’t do it on my own! The processes of the program are not without criticism, but I truly believe that most people can benefit from it. This is by no means a paid endorsement and all opinions are my own. I would be more than happy to have a conversation with anyone interested in attending regarding my experience.
One of the opportunities that has opened its door for me is my role as board member for the inaugural “Against All Odds” Charity Poker Tournament for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. Along with the hospital’s Las Vegas chapter Chair, Daniel Negreanu, Michael Binger, and Nick Binger are just some of the powerhouses also on the committee. The tentative date for this black-tie optional event is November 13, 2013. We will be organizing an unprecedented multi-tiered SNG format event with awesome prizes, people, and activities. At the top of our wish list for prizes is a Virgin Galactic trip to space! We will be working hard in the next few months to gather the best donations possible to make the event a rewarding experience for all. Please save the date!
If you are unfamiliar with St. Jude’s, they are a cutting-edge research center and hospital for children that no family ever has to pay for. We are currently seeking sponsors and donations at various levels. If you are interested in helping or have questions, please contact me or any of our board members.
Next Final Table
Since there are no final table opportunities in Toronto I will be travelling across the pond for EPT Berlin, WPT Barcelona, EPT London, and of course, the EPT Grand Finals in Monaco. I will also be playing every Sunday and the occasional Zoom session when I am in Canada.
As an EPT Players Council Member I would appreciate feedback and suggestions for the upcoming events. I know that PokerStars already has a fantastic support team, but channelling ideas through different outlets can be quite effective. No question or matter is too small!
Until next time,
My first cover! Poker Pro Canada Dec 2012
“Why the PCA will be won by a woman” – PokerStars Blog
PokerStars forms EPT Players Council – PokerStars News>
Xuan Liu on making history for women at the PCA – PokerStars Blog