Editor's Note: To be frank, the main reason I've been absent the last week has been due to doctor's orders! The Poker Shrink suggested that I take some time off and have fun before the 50K Horse and Main Event rolls around and I sleep one hour per day. I'm following his astute advice. In the meantime, I'm lucky to have him contribute to the Tao of Poker All Stars. Enjoy!
First, I gotta thank Pauly for this outlet for my dark side. You see as the reputable Poker Shrink but also a resident of Las Vegas, I witness a lot of 'moments' that I never write about. Dr. Pauly, on the other hand, writes about all of those seedy, late-night, undersides of life. So I figure what better place to get all of those dark, festering memories out than right here on the Tao.
I call this my "Worldly Moments from Series Past" or "Life in Los Vegas Stories that I never told Pauly."
Escalating the Insanity: Very early one morning, during the '07 Series, I was leaving the Planet Hollywood poker room after a very profitable session. The two fish just kept drinking and re-buying so I stayed well past my bedtime. PH like so many of the Strip casinos has parking way in the back of the property, so you have to walk out through the shoppes and restaurants, which are all closed at 4 AM.
When I got back to where the valet parking is located, the escalator was blocked by two pairs of "ladies" who were obviously drunk and screaming at one another. Standing there watching them was a security guard. I walked up to him and said:
"You think you can just get them away from the escalator, I am parked downstairs in the valet."
He frowned but said: "Well, I can try." He stepped forward: "Ladies would you mind taking this outside?"
Bad mistake. The two nearest banshees turned on the guard and were actually going to attack him. Since I had gotten the guard into this, instead of just finding the stairs, I stepped up beside with the guard and began to consider just how hard I would be justified in popping a very drunk and very high woman.
Just then, the other two ladies decided this was their opportunity to seize the advantage and they rushed the first two. Now I know that images of hair pulling, torn clothing and exposed body parts is what is clearly called for at this point, however, the security guard turned to me with a big grin and said: "Sir, I believe your escalator is now available."
Sure enough the cat fight had cleared my path to the down escalator. Taking the long, safe path around the girlie scrum, I did see several boobs freed of their spandex confines and I picked up a tip I hope you never need but I will pass it along: In a cat-fight, a good grip on a thong can create what appeared to be a painful camel toe. That's all I got, the security guard reinforcements arrived and the show was over.
Ransom for a Pair. I left the Rio one night after a final table in '08 and got a ride to New York, New York because my car was parked at MGM from the previous day (that's another story). Why NY-NY you ask, why not get a ride to MGM. Well they are across the Strip from each other and it's easier for me to walk across the pedestrian bridge then for my ride to navigate the Strip U-turn to the MGM valet. So I walked up one flight to the second level of the NY-NY casino where I spotted Denise, a lady I had written a story about in the past. Hadn't seen her in at least a couple of years, so I stopped to chat. Denise was a working lady and it seems she had branched out and had three other girls working for her. They used the New York-New York to MGM pedestrian bridge as their home turf, apparently under the protection of the night shift security guards.
After a short conversation, Denise had to get back on the job and we agreed to catch up via phone the next day. As I was about to leave, she took my arm and said: "You sure you have to get home?" She turned me in the direction of a truly spectacular young vision in white.
"Her name is Tiffany, you should say hello on your way out."
I did say hi to Tiffany as I headed towards the MGM. She has young, very young. She was thin, pale, dressed all in white with a white sparkled boa and well she was just the vision of innocence.
I said something like: "Hi Tiffany. Stick with Denise, she'll keep you safe."
As I walked towards MGM twenty feet above the Strip, I wondered just how erotic an hour with Tiffany might be. I was lost considering that possibility when I heard a too loud and too slurred - "It's the Poker Shrink! Right here in Vegas. The Poker Shrink!"
There was Dave, one of my old buddies from Minnesota, standing in the middle of the bridge. We did several: "What are you doing here?" and "What are you doing here?" again because Dave was a bit drunk and clearly cruising on what I discovered was ecstasy. So after three or four minutes of more "What are you doing here?" He changed his answer to: "I am looking for a hooker!"
I was about to say: "Maybe, you shouldn't actually shout that too loud, Dave." When off to my left I see Tiffany, the vision in white.
"Where are you staying Dave?"
"Right here." Pointing back at the MGM.
I asked him how much money he had. "Three hundred."
I waived Tiffany over and introduce her to Dave. I quietly pointed out to her that I could vouch for Dave and that she could see he was not going to be much trouble to well -- satisfy.
"I got three hundred," Dave blurted.
In good, tried and true fashion, Tiffany said: "The price is $400."
"But I only got three."
"Hang on," I said. I took out a hundred and put it in Dave's shirt pocket. Gave Tiffany and wink and helped her get Dave as far as the elevator.
"You're on your own now," I said to Dave, but I knew Tiffany was the one in charge.
Around four the next afternoon, I got a call from Dave. He asked me to come over to his hotel room; he had some questions about the previous night. When I arrived, Dave seemed to remember us talking on a bridge over a dark river somewhere. There apparently were a lot of fast boats with lots of lights. He also remembered a very white woman. But other than that all he had to show for the evening was a headache and a note that read: "You can ransom your shoes for the hundred bucks you owe me."
I got Dave to find his shirt from last night and sure enough the hundred-dollar bill I had given him was still in the pocket. I phoned Denise and we went by her place to ransom Dave's shoes. Tiffany was there. Dressed in black and looking much older and much wiser than the night before.
Thanks again Pauly, I gotta get out more.
The Poker Shrink recently co-authored (with Amy Calistri) the Mike Matusow autobiography titled Check-Raising the Devil.
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