Things didn’t go well this weekend, but they’re looking up in the last 24 hours.

Friday I showed up for the limit tournament. I couldn’t make pairs. Then I played 40-80 LHE. I made some pairs, and they usually didn’t win. I had the worst 40-80 session of my life losing $3800.

Friday night I got to spend some time with my little brother, something we have never done too much of sadly. We headed down to his local comic book and card shop, one that I used to go to as a kid, and fired a draft with us two, five other kids, and the store owner. Since we got 8 players he ran it as a DCI sanctioned event, and I won. Undefeated lifetime, watch out David Williams!

Saturday I headed in to the Commerce, intended on staying a while and winning money, and I did neither. I lost $2700, left before 8pm, and decided that I really want Islands. I picked out West Covina as the location that I would visit.

After ordering my burger from the bartender, she asked me if I work at Islands. No, but I used to, Montclair, 1998-1999. She asks if I worked with Gina, and Gina was my favorite. She was the big sister I never had and there for me that brutal senior year of high school after my dad passed. The bartender says that Gina’s her best friend and works here now.

We swap names, her’s is Hillary, and then she asks if I know Pops. Not immediately familiar with the nickname because he took it after high school, turns out it belongs to one of my best friends back then, the house that I went to immediately after finding out my dad passed.

I helped get him a job at Islands all those years ago, we went to youth group together, camp, we were close. He’s her boyfriend. I call him, tell him that I’m drinking beer and hitting on his girlfriend at the bar and that he’d better come down and stop me.

He did, we chatted and caught up, it was good. I then drove home, grabbed a change of clothes, and headed south to Fallbrook and Shelley’s mom’s house.

I had a brutal sleep as the Commerce schedule doesn’t agree with the normal Sunday morning family, and their two German Shepherd puppies figured out how to open doors and needed to check on me several times that morning. Shelley and I eventually headed into Temecula wine country with the top down, a perfect 75 degrees and sunny outside on February 14th. Ty So Cal.

I’ve never been to the Temecula wineries, and from the limited experience I had Sunday I think that I greatly dislike the northern side on Rancho, because everything felt way too over the top. We went to the South Coast Winery… Resort and Spa. C’mon. I don’t want this crap when I’m going wine tasting. Traffic? In wine country? Gimme a break. I saw a lot of these on the north side and it really turned me off.

But, the way we came in on the south side, the Portola Trail I think they called it, was awesome. First place we started was Robert Ranzoni Vineyards, an Italian winery. Immediately after opening the door to the barrel room the vinter himself, Fred Ranzoni, introduces himself, shakes my hand, and says hello. Pretty cool.

The one next door to Cougar had a Bocce court. The drunk guy serving the wine who reminded me a lot like Miles in Sideways snuck us some Sangria, complete with a chunk of pineapple, orange, and two blueberries. We played bocce in the afternoon sun sipping on Sangria. It was fantastic.

Monday I headed in at 1pm for the $1585 NLHE event, and didn’t make it to first break. First two hands I got caught bluffing, then I lost a flip, and then I lost the rest when the button opened to 250 at 50-100, the SB called, I made it 1025 with AQo like 5k effective, button folds, SB calls. Flop AT5hh, SB check calls 1100, turn a T, the 3k leftover gets in and I lose to JTo.

So, back to cash games, please don’t break me before the main event, get on the 40-80 list, look at a game that contains Theo Tran and Bart Hansen and Joe Tehan’s girlfriend who’s good and I consistently mistake for Kristy Arnett.

Plus the people I didn’t know looked more like sickos than SAGs so I went elsewhere. Ended up playing 5-10, sucked out with KK>AA aipf for 1k each, on the river, awesome, yay. Ended up winning like $1900 for a morale boost.

The $1065 8 game starts in 51 mins and I’m registered so I better get running.

Peace and good luck,