Listen to me on KTRS/St. Louis every Friday, 3-6pm CT

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Poker Stories: A New Definition of Heads-Up

Another in my occasional series of poker stories...

I can't count the number of times I've sat at a poker table and said, "Now I have seen everything." Each time, I've been wrong. There's always something even odder waiting to appear.

The guy at my table last week is a perfect example. I was in a $5/10 no-limit hold'em game that had been full, but several of the players left around 6:30pm to go to the Cardinals game down the street, and others didn't want to play short-handed, but three of us agreed to continue playing in the hopes that the game would fill up again later. About 45 minutes later, the guy this story is about sat down.

He wore dark sunglasses, had tattoos down both arms, and spoke with only half his mouth -- and he talked a lot, about large swaths of land he owned in Illinois and other topics I couldn't follow. I didn't care, because he kept losing money. My attitude has always been you can say or do whatever you want at the table, as long as you're contributing to a lot of pots.

The guy had apparently been there before, but I'd never played with him. I texted one of the other players to ask if he knew the guy, and this was the reply:

He told us Monday that he just got out of prison for holding someone hostage, but didn't do it. He told us after the cops arrested him he woke up with a gunshot to the head. If he takes his glasses off you'll see his left eye isn't there. Dude is actually crazy. Dunno much else.
But that's not all. When he re-bought for the fourth time, he brought out his secret weapon -- a prosthetic head -- which he held in front of him on the table at all times. One of the other players finally asked, "What the deal with the head?" To which the guy answered,
"Oh, I carry it around in my Mercedes, which has dark tinted glass, and sometimes, I'll roll the window down and stick the head out to freak out other drivers. There are really only two months I can use it, September and October, leading up to Halloween. So this is the time of year I keep it with me."
That's when I joked, "You give new meaning to heads-up poker." The guy laughed as I thought to myself, "Now I've seen everything," before quickly correcting myself -- because who knows what the hell will happen this week!

Read more of my poker stories here.