Sunday, October 31, 2010

Cowboys and cards

An inset from Charles Marion Russell's 1898 painting Making the Chinaman Dance at the Booth Western Art Museum, Cartersville, Ga.
CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- Today we went up to see an Ansel Adams exhibit at the Booth Western Art Museum and got more for our $10 ($9 with the AAA card) entrance fee.

We joined a tour with a docent that gave us the highlights of this specialized museum. It's pretty new (smells like a new casino) and modern, thanks to a mystery billionaire benefactor our docent wouldn't tell us the name of.

I was pretty amazed at how much I like American art from the Old West. Of course it helps when you spot your card-playing heritage in pieces above and below:

A portion of John Solie's 2007 Steady the Table, Booth Western Art Museum.

I'm pretty fascinated with the history of card games in general, whether it's reading Jim McManus' CardPlayer articles or books or the smallest exhibit, such as the trick cane and old cards displayed in the hallway of the Horseshoe Casino in Tunica, Miss.

The only oddity about this museum, which calls itself the country's largest museum of Western art (in terms of size and number of pieces), is that it's in the farthest reaches of metro Atlanta. You'd think this would be something you'd come across during the daytime in Las Vegas while waiting for the NL games to open up.

After I came home, I took a nap and finished my Full Tilt Iron Man points for the month, happy to take a break that included looking at the games of yesteryear.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Cats on the road (Nashville)

Took to the road this weekend to visit Nashville for two Chihuly glass exhibits and one on Impressionism. It was my first time to Nashville and it really didn't disappoint. I've been a fan of Dale Chihuly ever since I walked underneath the Bellagio's ceiling on my way to its poker room.

The first place we hit was the Cheekwood Botanial Garden and Art Museum. Memphis Mojo had been here and posted about the exhibit in September but as awesome as his photos were, it wasn't enough to make me want to drive 295 miles for the first time ever.

But when the Frist Center for the Visual Arts announced its Impressionism exhibit with works from the Musee D'Orsay in Paris (and when I discovered the Frist Center also was having its own Chihuly exhibit), things started to fall in place.

Never mind that one of the people behind the federal act that made online poker less accessible to Americans shares the namesake of the art center.

Cheekwood's Chihuly glass was pretty amazing. It pours out onto the grounds and blends with it, although at times I thought the modern glass took away from the real beauty of the garden's flowers and landscape. I had been to the Chihuly glass exhibit at the Atlanta Botanical Garden in 2007 and the one here in Nashville was way more vast.

The Frist Center's exhibit was smaller in scale and as such couldn't really compare to what Cheekwood had to offer. Because that exhibit was so short, we took the time to watch a long video on how the glass is blown and that was worth the time.

And it turns out that I don't have to wait too long to catch my next Chihuly exhibit, apparently one is opening up at the Aria in City Center the weekend I am in town for the half marathon.

Can't wait!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Free poker money (Take 2 is back!)

Full Tilt's Take 2 promotion is back, which means a pretty easy $25 for those willing to -- gasp -- play two poker tables at a time.

The way it works is you have to register first for the promotion. After clicking on the "Cashier" button, click on "My Promotions" and then "Take 2" will be at the bottom of that web page.

Once you're registered, you'll earn the following:

- $5 for playing two tables five of the next 10 days
- An additional $20 for playing nine of the next 10 days

The rules are here.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Preparing for Vegas

Now that fall is upon us, I'm getting ready to travel to Las Vegas for the first time this year for the Dec. 5 Rock'n'Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon.

Yet this trip won't be all poker, since I'm going with my fiancee. We'll be celebrating my birthday weekend with dinner at Michael Mina and anywhere else I can think of.

Because we both have the entire next week off, I'm thinking that after the race, we'll head up to Zion National Park, my favorite, for a few days and then maybe hit the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

And be back in Vegas in time for the blogger weekend. W00t.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Presto DQB

Full Tilt Poker $0.25/$0.50 Pot Limit Hold'em - 8 players - View hand 976308

DeucesCracked Poker Videos Hand History Converter

MP2: $46.50

CO: $11.20

BTN: $43.50

SB: $61.70

BB: $134.75

UTG: $35.00

Hero (UTG+1): $50.00

MP1: $29.25

Pre Flop: ($0.75) Hero is UTG+1 with 5 of spades 5 of diamonds

1 fold, Hero raises to $1.50, 4 folds, SB calls $1.25, 1 fold

Flop: ($3.50) A of clubs 5 of hearts 6 of hearts (2 players)

SB checks, Hero bets $2.85, SB calls $2.85

Turn: ($9.20) 5 of clubs (2 players)

SB checks, Hero bets $5.75, SB raises to $15.50, Hero requests TIME, Hero calls $9.75

River: ($40.20) 3 of diamonds (2 players)

SB bets $40.20, Hero calls $30.15 all in

Final Pot: $100.50

SB shows K of hearts A of spades (two pair, Aces and Fives)

Hero shows 5 of spades 5 of diamonds (four of a kind, Fives)

Hero wins $97.50

(Rake: $3.00)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

When a day is a set of 10s (10-10-10)

CHICAGO -- Decided to spend this weekend outside the A, skipping a lost NLDS game at Turner Field and a nice road win for the Atlanta Falcons by returning to my hometown and running in the Bank of America Chicago Marathon.

Score one for the bucket list.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Two wins, one shirt

It's done. Wearing alt mccann today. Hello postseason!
-Sunday a.m. text message to Gnome

As an Atlanta Falcons season ticket holder, I headed to the Georgia Dome yesterday to watch the Falcons take on the winless San Francisco 49ers.

But I wasn't about to let the Atlanta Braves down. I wore my lucky alternate-McCann shirt, which is 7-0 in games it's been worn, including crazy walk-off grand slams to win the game.

Having that kind of knowledge made the Braves moneyline very attractive.

And so I went to my parking deck to tailgate with Sham, Matt and his brother. Already, the routine was a little awry. This week I forgot the charcoal so we relied entirely on Sham's new propane Hibachi, which worked like a charm.

San Francisco scored early after a questionable pass interference call on Dunta "$22.5 million" Robinson. Then they blocked a Falcons punt and were up 14-0.

During the game Gnome was giving me updates via text and every so often they'd flash the score on the electronic screens at the Georgia Dome. Things looked pretty nice for the Braves with an 8-2 lead in the 6th inning. That gave me time to focus on the Falcons game and the Dirty Birds were still down 14-13 with about a minute and a half to go.

Then Matt Ryan throws an interception and we can see San Francisco running it down toward the end zone. It seemed like it was all over. I was justifying it at the time that last week's win at New Orleans was unexpected and this would even it out.

Until ... Falcons wide receiver Roddy White strips the ball away (just like he did last year against the 49ers) and the Falcons recover it. The Falcons drive down the field and kick a field goal to win 16-13.

The crowds were jubilant, but nothing like the chanting in the halls of the Georgia Dome on Oct. 12, 2008 when the Falcons kicked a game-winning field goal against the Chicago Bears.

Sham and I managed to make it back to my office in time to see Billy Wagner close out the 9th inning for the win.

And just like that, two wins, one shirt. You know you're going to see it in the postseason.