I used to think I had a bit of an anger management problem. You know...you chase a guy around with a snow shovel, you threaten to rape a man with a phone, and you ALLEGEDLY bean a little kid with a baseball and you start to think that maybe, just maybe, you're a little off kilter.
After Friday night, I'm not worried anymore. I'm a piker...a poser...a hack. I've been to the mountain and I've met 'the man', the Babe Ruth of freaking out.... the Tiger Woods of temper tantrums....I've met Andy.
The last couple of times that I've played pub poker I've had people point to this guy while he plays darts, " see that guy over there...never play poker with that guy." and " You should see that guy at the bar play poker, no wait maybe you shouldn't".
So Friday night I got invited to play at a home game with a bunch of people that I really don't know very well at all. And into this house walks the much revered/reviled Andy, and a buzz went through the rom, " OH NO...HE'S NOT HERE ?!??!"
But for the life of me I could not understand what the problem was. The guy was really nice. He was loud for sure, but there wasn't a friendlier guy in the place. He walked up to me as the newcomer and introduced himself, he made a couple of jokes, and made me feel welcome.
The only thing that gave me pause was when he pulled me aside to give me his warning, " Listen pal..glad to have you here...but let me tell you something about this game...we ONLY play good cards. If you're going to play BAD cards you're not going to be welcome back. So just play good cards and we'll all have a good time."
I really didn't want to stir the pot, but I had to ask, " Don't get me wrong, I hope to play the best poker that I can...but wouldn't you WANT me to play bad cards ? I mean if I play bad cards and you play good cards you're likely to take all my money. Isn't that the point ?"
He got very serious for a second, " NO ! We're here to have a good time. If I win I win...If I lose I lose...I can take losing to someone with better cards than me...but I cannot STAND to lose to someone who gets LUCKY !"
(long pause while I pondered this) "Ummmm....OK"
So finally we sit down to play, 8 men and 1 woman and Andy starts to distribute the chips. He gives us 100 chips with the blinds to start at 1/2. So I said, " since you prefer to eliminate luck out of it, why don't we start with more chips ?"
Andy thought about it for a second and said, " Good idea. We'll make the chips worth 100 each instead of 1 each...so we're all starting wtih 10,000......and we'll make the blinds 100/200"
" But that's the same....nevermind...good idea". Now dear reader, do you see what I have to put up with ?
Anyway we start playing and about 20 minutes while the cards are being dealt one of the cards flipped over.
" RE-DEAL" the young women next to me said.
" NO !", said Andy, " Just keep dealing, that's how we do it here."
" Well I want a redeal" to woman said and with that she flipped over her card too exposing a king, " Now you have to redeal".
Well out went good time Andy and entered the Andy of legends. At the drop of a hat he went from loud and friendly to loud and asshole.
" YOU FUCKING BITCH. IF YOU DON'T WANT TO PLAY BY OUR RULES THEN GET THE FUCK OUT. WHO THE FUCK DO YOU THINK YOU ARE."
WHOA WHOA WHOA everyone at the table jumped up to calm him down...easy big fellah.
" No, I'm just saying right is right. And this bitch is disrespecting me and the game. She doesn't know how to play poker."
and in deminishing degrees this continued for the next 45 minutes
" you don't know how to play....I'm right and you're wrong just admit it....blah blah blah"
The entire time the woman was unplussed...just sitting there drinking her beer playing cards.
Finally Andy knocked out 3 players and had the biggest ship stack at the table. Then he was happy as a clam. His good cards beat their good cards and all was well. There were 4 people left Andy, another guy, me and the woman.
The woman was down to two chips...$20. Then she doubled-up, then doubled again, then again, THEN AGAIN ! and the next thing I know she's tied with Andy for the chip lead. Then the following hand happened:
FLOP A 8 8
she checks...he checks
she checks....he bets....she thinks about it for a while and calls
she checks...he bets big....she thinks...thinks...then goes all in...
Andy quickly called, jumped up and said, " HA ! I have the 8 ! Three 8s !"
And smooth as butter she says, " I also have the 8..........and an ace. Fullhouse"
The room went completely silent and Andy..now completely red and veins in his neck bulging got up to walk out of the room.
" Wait a second" I said.
I counted up all of her chips and his chips while he painfully waited...standing to leave and biting his tongue. And it was worse than busting out...when all was said and done he had three chips left. He was going to have to continue to sit there and play at least one more hand.
You could cut the tention with the knife as the chick slowly and silently gathered up her chips...her massive pile of chips....and started stacking them.
Mind you, there was NOTHING Andy could say. She played 'GOOD CARDS', she had the best hand. And she knew , we knew , and he sure as shit knew ..he was totally outwitted and outplayed in the hand. With all the courage and strength he could muster, and between gritted teeth, Andy muttered, " ...nice...hand..."
And the woman, who had been sitting there for over an hour taking his shit smiled ever so gently and said,
" Yeah it was wasn't it"
and then to make sure that the knife went all the way in...
" And it's a good thing that I don't know how to play poker or else you'd have _NO_ chips."
Now have you ever seen the Buggs Bunny "Nature Boy" cartoon where Bugs gets the canibal dude to flip out with the whole "unga bunga thing ?" or have you ever seen someone set afire while being stung by a swarm of bees ?
Well neither of those things is even close to what followed.
Andy started running around the basement screaming and throwing his hands in the air. He was yelling and you could make out most of the swear words, but it was mostly speaking in toungues. I'm sure that if he were an older man that he would have stroked out or had a seizure.
Then after much coaxing by everyone else in the room and some physical restraint he would calm down to the point of hyperventilation.
And as soon as that would happen she would lay into him again... " Damn !!! Flopped the nuts and you walked right into it. You never saw it coming. Checking on the end was a nice touch too huh ?"
And he'd go again. By the end he was quite litterally foaming at the mouth.
Finally, after about 10 minutes of a complete coniption fit the owner of the house, the dudes best friend, came down into the basement and threw him out ! "You're a great friend and all but you're out of your mind and you have to leave."
The last thing I could hear was the dude upstairs sobbing and tossing stuff around the backyard.
Meanwhile the chick sat there smiling to herself...and quietly stacking her chips.