Saturday, December 17, 2011
The season to be jolly, spend family time, give back...and play online poker?
I just got to Canada a few days ago. I usually try to spend the Holidays with my family. It's been really nice to be back to my hometown, Quebec city. The weather has been unusually nice, which is awesome because, I was dreading the cold a little bit. Living in Vegas, we get spoiled with winters that are pretty sunny with mild temperatures. Though the weather is usually nicer in Vegas, Quebec is way more beautiful and magical during the holidays. It is a beautiful, historical city and I am very proud to be from here. I am here for almost 3 weeks so I will have plenty of time to see everyone and catch up with family and friends. I especially will be spending time with my daugther, even though she is working a lot at the moment, I still get to see her everyday. *Happy mum*
The holidays is a time for family but it's also a time to give back. Before my departure, Mike and I got a few toys for kids who are less fortunate and dropped them off to one of the "Toys for tots" locations. There are MANY locations you can drop off toys if you would like to participate or you can donate money. They also have different events around the USA to raise money. You can go on their website at http://www.toysfortots.org/ for any information needed. You can give as much as you want/can and it truly makes a difference in a kid`s life. It feels good to do so, so just do it! ;)
I also was invited to play as a poker guest in a celebrity charity event for Cerebral Palsy called "All In for CP" at the Venetian a few days before my Canada departure. It is an event that is held by Jacob, who has CP and is a poker player, Many of you might have seen him during the WSOP as he is very friendly and wanders around the rooms with his electrical scooter/wheelchair. The event is held yearly, in December in hope of raising money for kids with Cerebral Palsy so that they can get an electrical wheelchair. For those who do not know, these wheelchairs are VERY expensive. They start at around 25K each but they change those kids lives tremendously. We raised close to 200k in the event, which consisted of a $550 buy-in tournament with $200 re-buys, with a silent auction in which some very generous donations were made. There was a total of 155 players. My girlfriend Pamela Brunson and I both made the final table, where she took 2ND and I took 8Th. It was lots of fun to be part of such a great successful event. You can still make a donation or learn more about it at http://www.onestepcloserfoundation.org/tournament/.
I surely hope I can be part of it again next year. A lot of people do not realize that poker is a great way to raise money for charities. It's not all bad like the government makes it look like lately.
Now that I am in Canada, I decided to open a few accounts so that I can play online poker. I do not have to worry about my money being frozen by the DOJ and can play freely on hours that are convenient to me. Since I came here to be with my family, I usually wait until they are in bed, busy or working. It's great to have that freedom again and be able to open your laptop and jump in a game whenever you wish! Even though I prefer playing live than online in general, I still really appreciate the convenience of online playing. The only day that will be all about poker and not family is going to be next Sunday, as it is when all the big payouts are being held. Being Pokerstars 10Th anniversary, the prize pools are even bigger than usual. Sunday million tournament has a guaranteed 2 million for 1st place so I will definitively be trying for my shot at that prize. So far I am doing pretty good in the cash games and I have won a seat to one of the big tourneys on Sunday so I am definitely having a good start. *smile*
I hope everyone has a happy holiday season.
Be safe, loved and happy.