I am back in my Toronto, currently looking for another lease even though I was only at my last condo for ~3 months last year. I really do intend on spending more time at home if I can help it, especially with so many new live Canadian stops and Full Tilt coming back soon. The WSOP was a stressful time and there are definitely things I would do differently next year. It was my second real World Series and I earnestly tried to focus only on poker but there was no escape from the noise and pressure to mold my own identity in this world. I will always be true to my values and remain stubborn in many of ways, but with recognition comes an interesting set of responsibilities that isn’t always natural for my personality. I felt bad and still do because I put a lot of strain on my interpersonal relationships when I questioned people’s motives out of my own insecurities this past summer.
My dad and stepmom came to visit me and had a great time, as did my best friend Huyen and her Nick. It felt great to be able to show them the different facets of Vegas and I was proud to finally give them a glimpse into my lifestyle. I was also obnoxiously sick just from being in the dry desert and being exposed to violent AC so of course I felt guilty for the tournaments I had missed and stressed myself out even more trying to make up for it. Some sweet stuff did happen though. Simon, Dom and Vanessa won a bracelet, and I still do have that Stud 8 final table. I also got an Ipad and a sweet massage at the tables for my birthday.
It was a great WSOP for women and although I feel the glory from being a girl and am very happy for every one of these ladies, I think it’s also alright to admit I’m jealous. It’s not malicious, it just comes from my competitive drive since it makes me feel like I need to work harder and set the bar higher for myself. It’s really an exciting time for players of every demographic with the predicted “second renaissance” of poker and this is a trend that is here to stay.
WPT Parx and EPT Barcelona are next on my schedule. These are exciting times because I will be doing some footage for WPT’s “Ones to Watch” segment so I will do my best to give them some impressive results. I am also honoured to have been selected to be a member of the inaugural EPT Player’s Council. The first meeting is at EPT Barcelona which was also my very first EPT stop on my first trip to Europe in 2010. It’s a beautiful city and I can’t wait to stay by the beach at the Hotel Arts!
2010 was an insane year of transitions. The tl;dr of my 365 days:
– Grinded a lot of RUSH and made a RUSH 6max $1/2 vid that never got launched (partially because I was too cheap to buy the full-version of Camtasia when I didn’t finish according to schedule). Paid for MTT coaching.
– Visited family in Tianjin, China, and rekindled with people I hadn’t seen for 17+ years. Had so much fun (and good food) I thought about permanently moving to Beijing.
– First time in Macau: not a very long trip and went there originally to play cash, but went deep in 2/2 events so didn’t have time. Grand Lisboa has sick rooms.
– Got everything hacked. Not fun. Mental game shot.
– Studied a ton for CFA exam, but not hard enough with poker (still) as a distraction.
– My first WSOP! Had own condo for a month and a half to grind cash. Rio was hit and miss but Venetian games were golden everyday. Won biggest pot of career of 1000bb at Caesar’s. Played 2 WSOP events, 3 VDS, 1 Aria 8game, and 1 Caesar’s main. Played a lot of 8-game online.
– Met a good man in a situation I wasn’t ready for.
– Made a vid for the Big Game. After the telephone interview (happened in Barcelona) I was told that if I don’t hear back from them til Jan it was a good thing…
– Took a leap of faith and became convinced playing liveaments was the way to go. Took a lot of reflection to make poker my #1 priority rather than just an auxiliary compromise.
– Fulfilled a dream of being a night/blood elf on Halloween. Costume was meh but it sure was fun reliving my ultimate nerd days.
– NAPT L.A: Rented place off Craigslist that didn’t end up having furniture, final tabled (no cash) 8game to a good start, some sick beats in others (e.g. flop straight on 7h5h3, get it in 100+bb deep vs. Ah7x who goes perfect perfect for a boat.) Didn’t feel significantly outmatched at any time which was a great enabler for my confidence. Sweated Van for 4th in the main in Compton, saw a Laker’s game and went to Disneyland.
– EPT Barcelona: My first time in Europe! Won mega satty and cashed in a side, got owned on first hand played in the main (review to come). Found a reliable roommate for the first time in awhile. Visited Gaudi’s spiritual/architectural gem; the inspiring/humbling/empowering experience will linger for a long time.
– IPT San Remo: lots of nomming of the pasta and pizza. First sense of loneliness on the road by myself. Binked mega satty and 1k side, got owned in main and ladies’. So far Italians in Italy are the friendliest people I have encountered.
– EPT Prague: Flew in right in time for 2nd level of the main and gave the eventual winner a lot of “positive vibes”. Prague is as beautiful as someone once dear to me described, but it’s even colder. Had lots of beef goulash and got hustled in Chinese. Went to a black metal bar and a strip club with midgets.
– Home for the holidays: was fortunate enough not to get stuck at an airport. It’s nice hermitting with family and eating home food. All caught up on Dexter, Bones, Modern Family, House, and my sister. NYE party was kinda nuts and became another friendly reminder to pour my own drink and not leave them unattended.
I joined a new gym today and was so exhausted when I came home i fell asleep super early so I woke up in the middle of the night and realized this was one of the only times I can force myself to blog. It’s just that on these trips I sometimes have to make an effort to be social all the time so when I finally have some time to myself I rarely feel like I’m in the mood to reflect publicly again. Hope that makes sense and doesn’t get misunderstood. I apologize if this post isn’t even a real post, but it will have to do for now. I don’t want to head off to PCA and kick myself for not blogging again.