Sunday, March 20, 2011

Last Tampa try for this year

I drove up to the Tampa Hard Rock today and played for about seven hours.  Lost in the end forty two dollars.
My first session was the hard one.  I won just two hands in over three hours of play.  The table was perfect.  We even had a guy who would raise on the river with A=K and no pair.  But it did not do me any  good.
My second session was much better.  I had great cards and most of the time they held up.  Then I caught some help on blind hands like K-6 offsuit and I even called one girl with my pocket fives, a girl who bluffed often, and luckily I was right that time.  She had nothing.
I raised once with pocket sixes next to the button, just to push the button off and be last to act.  I thought I'd just see if I could hit a set by the turn.  The table was just so passive.  I flopped the set, and of course I was in total disguise then as everyone put me on a big pair, so they paid me even after the turn and river gave me a full house.
But at about nine most of the weaker players had been replaced with stone faced regulars.  So not only did the pots start to shrink, but the company was so dull and boring I could barely stand it.
That one delightful young bluffing girl was playing for the fun of it.  She had one of those fresh, girl next door faces and an attitude that just beamed good humor.  The rest were so damn serious.  And this was two-four.

So I headed home.

The drive back was more direct and absolutely dreamy.  Sunday night and few were on the roads out of Tampa, but by the time I left 75 no one was on the road.  I could see those reflectors in the middle of the road, winding like long Christmas tree lights into where I was driving next.  There were no lights to weaken their effect, no car lights, no signs, no houses, nothing except the winding double run of reflectors and the dark woods on either side.  How do they get these reflectors to pick up my headlights so well that it appears the road is lit with little lights all along the way?
I don't like driving much in the dark, but I loved this.  I just set the cruise to the speed limit, turned on one of my favorite CD's and eased on down the road.

Of course, the advantage of Vegas is I don't have to drive at all to get to bed.  Also, a forty two dollar loss at poker over seven hours would actually be break-even once the value of the rum and free food was computed.
I tried to use comps I thought I had at Tampa, but all I got was twenty cents off my supper.  And forget a free buffet.  The Sunday Brunch buffet costs thirty dollars and runs ten am until ten pm.  How can you serve food at ten pm and call it brunch?
So I just grabbed some chicken and veggies, but even that was a hassle.  The line was held up when the computer broke and they could only take cash.  The guy behind me had four slices of pizza at about five dollars each and he had no cash.  He had lost a thousand dollars that day and was grabbing some food to lick his wounds.  It was very sad compared to what I might have done in Vegas.
Still, I had a fine time, and that will be it now until next year.
I do love it here in Florida.  Yesterday we were out in the Dade Memorial Park listening to the BlackCreek bluegrass band play some great stuff, just sittin' under a shady tree in summer-like weather and watching the little caterpillars drop down from tree branchesto sway on threads in between the drapped Spanish moss and often onto our laps, their cute little antennae weaving this way and that way as if they were dancing to the sound of the banjo.
And today I was playing poker.


FleaStiff said...

Dade Memorial Park suggests the Miami-Dade area so why drive all the way to Tampa for a Poker Room? I thought all the casinos have poker now and all the racetracks have the new higher-limits poker.

I've been to Immokalee's casino and its a low level blackjack and low level baccarat. Its a very small poker room there but some of those regulars must consider the casino to be their home.

As to food at the various Seminole casinos, yeah they can't learn to do it right. Comps are few and far between at Seminole casinos and the food service is poorly organized. The Seminoles once had a 99cent Beer and 99cent HotDog special: with the beer and hotdogs served at opposite ends of the casino!

Dewey said...

I think I was a long way from Miami. But if Dade City had poker, I was not with any gamblers, so going there was out of the question.
Florida poker for me means most of the time a solo journey.
Now it would be even a longer drive, because I am back in Albany NY. Vegas for fifteen days, starting on May 2.
I know what you mean about locals owning the games. I stay clear of those games when I can. If everyone knows everyone and how they play, it is hard to get an edge.
I had some of that at the Silks, but it was fine there, especially since many of the guys were distracted by the horses.
Ocala is closer than Tampa, but I did not get there this trip. Maybe next trip.
Funny hot dog comp.