Crazy Days Indeed

As I look back on the crazy times of my youth and tell stories about the craziest of all the poker games I have played, I can’t help but wonder if the games were as good as I remember or if everything changes once you put the bong down.

The games were crazy and there were many of them. I am not sure any game really deserves the title of the craziest game I ever played. I reflect back to a large game at Spirit Mountain in Oregon. We were playing $15-30 limit hold’em but the game was playing much bigger than a normal $15-30 game. There were at least four millionaires in the game and a couple of crazy action junkies. I played in the game for ten hours and there was not a single pot that was not raised before the flop. There were a couple players that saw every single flop all night long. Every single hand was shown over at the river. The small pots in this game were five or six hundred and the average pot was around a grand. I remember at least a dozen hands where the action was capped pre-flop with all ten players still in the hand. Yes the pot was $600 before the flop and every player tried to win that pot. I remember the hand well because I had pocket deuces and flopped a set. The flush got there on the turn and the river the board paired queens giving me the smallest possible full house. I was raising on the flop and it was capped. The turn I was just calling and it was capped again. On the river I was just a caller and I put in another $120 for a six way showdown. I won that $2500 pot and remember it as just a surreal feeling like something from a dream. My good friend Gene played in that game and ran into some bad luck late in the session and lost about 100 big bets. I had another friend Stuart who won a $2000 pot with ten high in one of the more famous poker hands I have ever witnessed. Yes that game was crazy.

A second crazy game I remember was a $3-6 game at Elk Valley Casino where they play the game with a $1-2 blind. People had just started to put the live straddle on from the under the gun position; for whatever reason it had become fashionable to straddle. The table must have been full of crazy players because soon the live straddle was raised in the dark. The player making it $8 to go did not have last action but he had stolen some of the thunder from the under the gun player. After a few hands of increasing action and craziness, players were raising and capping the bet before the cards were dealt. I remember one entire orbit where it was $14 to go and every player had put $14 in before the cards were dealt. Simply stated the pot was $140 and the flop was put up. At that point players were trying to bet the flop dark before the cards were dealt. For some strange reason the management of the casino decided to step in and not allow action on the flop before the cards were dealt. I guess the whole idea of gambling offended their senses. I thought all the players were having fun and the house should do their almighty best to stay out of the way. That game was crazy for an hour or two until the casino management felt the need to throw a wet blanket over the action and actually piss off several of the action players. That game had the potential to become the craziest game ever. I could imagine a scenario where every player would have put $89 in the center and just ran the cards out and awarded the pot to the winning hand. I guess I would call it lottery poker.

I played in many other crazy games and I will follow up with a few more stories detailing why each game was considered one of the craziest I have been involved in.

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