How Can Something Good Be So Bad?
I've been on a stretch where I keep fucking things up --- work, life, poker, everything. If there's an odd typo or some fact in a story that I can somehow forget to double-check, it's gonna be the one that gets through, or I'll check into multiple, conflicting sources and go with the one that's wrong, even though it looks right. Bah. Just bah.
Even in poker, I should be happy with taking down a third in a nice big tournament, for one of my best finishes ever. But the ending was painful. Sitting in a confortable second place with three remaining --- the chips for the three of us roughly in a 3:2:1 ratio, I get it all in against the leader with K-K vs. J-J, and watch as the board delivers runner-runner spades on the turn and river for a four-flush that knocks me out in third. Bad beats are a part of poker, but that was my most expensive bad beat ever, and therefore worth the mention just this once.
If I'm going to get crushered like that, I'd almost rather it be early on when it doesn't involve good possible winnings cruelly disappearing into the ether. So there's a poser, for you all to ponder: Given that beats are going to occur, would you rather suffer them early in a tourney, or late?
I'm reminded, after some pondering before posting this, of the passage in McManus's Positively Fifth Street where he describes the night after losing with A-Q vs. Hasan Habib's A-4 and getting knocked out of the 2006 WSOP Main Event in fifth, for a quarter million shekels or somesuch. Sleep for an hour, cry for an hour, and do it all night long, as McManus recounted. I remember, too, when I played so miserably on the PokerDome and went back to my room at Caesar's, with rather fewer tears, I guess, but I still had a restless, solitary night, thinking about things that might have been and were unlikely to ever be again. My complimentary bottle of bubbly went untasted as well, returning home with me many days later. (It tasted good later, though.)
And I'm a poker nobody. Think of how it feels for the big boys, or the ones that get eight- or nine-tenths of the way to pulling a Moneymaker and end up with nothing for their dreams. There's a thousand of those stories out there, and they never get heard. It hurts to get close, it really does. Just as it hurts to work hard and fuck things up, too. Karma's for dreamers, it seems.
And my Badgers and Packers sucked this weekend, too. Bah, humbug. Just bah. Just shoot me please, and let this miserable stretch of days be over. Right now, when the chips are down, I cannot do anything right. If I wasn't trying I wouldn't care, but when I am trying, it's just frustration after frustration.