by dtools22 | Published Jan 17, 2013
A belated welcome to 2013 all, since you’re reading this the world did not in fact reach extinction just yet and we get to back to our daily musings until the sun does in fact blow up and eat us. In the meantime, might as well go on a road trip. That’s been my mentality anyway. I’ve embarked on a journey across the country to play poker and to force myself out of my little bubble. Our plan was to head from Boston, MA on January 5 and reach Los Angeles, CA no later than January 12. SPOILER ALERT; we made it across in one piece and I’ve spent most of the down time of the trip playing poker, because really, what else is there for a grinder to do?
The first leg of the journey brought us to southern Illinois, about an hour’s drive from St. Louis, MO. After a 24 hour journey our trio of travelers and their faithful canine companion took a few days to rest and get back some semblance of humanity. A few days of showering and sleeping later, I mentioned that there was a solid casino in St. Louis that I wanted to check out. Thankfully my travel partners were all gung ho to head anywhere they could find a Wi-Fi connection so we hit the road and made our way to the Hollywood Casino in St. Louis.
I will say, thus far on my trip this was probably the nicest poker room I’ve seen. At time of writing I’ve spent some time at the Commerce Casino as well as the Bicycle Casino in California, but I’ll save those gems for a later post. Once my fellow travelers found a café with internet and power outlets abound, I made my way over to the poker room. It was smaller than most places I’ve been, but still looked like it comfortably had 40 tables. There wasn’t a ton of game selection but for a low stakes grinder like myself, I’m pretty easy to please. Sure enough they had my normal game, a 1/2NL Holdem table with a min buy of $60 and a max of $300, just like I play at Foxwoods. It felt good to get into some action, though not much happened in terms of financial success. I lost $7 after 4 hours of play, so more or less a break even day. What was more important about the stop was that I felt a little more comfortable. I’m very much in my element when I’m in a poker room. Every place you go has its own bells and whistles to it but in the end it’s all the same game and this place more than most made me feel right at home. It was classy looking having recently been remodeled. The felt was new, the chips felt similar to those that I have spent the better part of 15 months shipping into pots, and the décor made me feel like I was perfectly in my element. As I mentioned, not much happened on the felt that was worth noting, but I enjoyed the experience all the same.
We left Illinois the next day and found ourselves in Valencia California 30 hours and 1800 miles later. I was really excited to check out the casinos in the LA area, having heard plenty about them through legendary word of mouth stories and a little of my own personal recon through the magic of the internet. Sadly thus far it hasn’t lived up to the hype for me, but that’s another blog topic right there so I’m going to sign off and head back to the Commerce to grind some cash while the LAPC rumbles along.