January 31, 2010

The Ironman Inviteth

Navin R. Johnson:  The new phone book's here! The new phone book's here!

Harry Hartounian:  Boy, I wish I could get that excited about nothing.

Navin R. Johnson:  Nothing? Are you kidding? Page 73 - Johnson, Navin R.! I'm somebody now! Millions of people look at this book everyday! This is the kind of spontaneous publicity - your name in print - that makes people. I'm in print! Things are going to start happening to me now.

Sniper [points to Navin's name in the phone book]:  Johnson, Navin R... sounds like a typical bastard.

--The Jerk

Friday was an exciting day for the Ironman of Poker (IMOP) crew, as official invites arrived via cruise director Santa Claus’ secret email account. The IMOP-V crew is officially set, giving us our official theme—“A Wolfpack of 12”. Pledge names have been assigned to the newbies—Colt, Fat Jesus, River Joe, Baby Carlos, and Mr. Chow.

We are already booked in Rialto View Suites at the Venetian, taking advantage of the scandalously low, insider-trading level poker room rate. Santa Claus correctly describes these accommodations as “1,100 square feet of pure awesomeness.” Somehow the six hours per day of mandatory poker play doesn’t seem all that challenging of a hurdle.

Returning events this year include the four NLHE tourneys we will play as a group, though the Sahara has fallen out of the rotation for the first time ever (much to the joy of Ironman “Sahara” who has made this request four straight years). This year’s IMOP-sanctioned tourneys will be held at Planet Hollywood, TI, Mirage, and Aria. Fittingly, the Mirage is a nod to IMOP history, as it has not been on the calendar since IMOP-I, while Aria is the new kid on the poker block, providing temporal symmetry to events (not that we really care). Also returning will be the ugly jacket dinner, this year at Nob Hill in MGM. As three time and only champion ever, I am a prohibitive favorite to win this event. In case you scoff, here are my entries from the past two years (with a cameo from Sahara himself in last year’s picture):

First they didn't have the bamboo umbrellas for the drinks, and now snails on the plate!

New events this year include the first ever team competition, with three teams headed by the three all-time IMOP champions. We will also be having a pledge hazing event, involving a quiz about IMOP history and The Hangover. Losers will be required to play the opening tourney wearing interesting outfits, shall we say.

One of our IMOP newbies—Pledge Colt (so-named as the doppelganger for some Longhorn who had a bad day against a Boy Named Ndamukong Suh)—already has regaled the IMOP crew with a worthy IMOP-pregame poker story from a weekend trip by several of the IMOP home game crew to Riverside Casino:
The good news—I got to see a royal flush beat aces full of kings on a board of Ac, 10c, Ad, Kd, Kc.

Yep—the bad beat jackpot at our table.

“Why was this anything less than a positive experience for you, Colt?”—you might ask. Well, I’ll tell you.

After returning from taking a leak and sitting back down—I watched the hand play out—even commenting that the river card (King of clubs) had the making for a bad beat jackpot to those around me. Once the cards were flipped over; we went nuts—and then later found out you had to be DEALT in the hand to be eligible for 25% of the jackpot ($55,000).

So—that piss cost me $2300.

With that said—if I were actually in the hand—the beat would have never happened and Fat Jesus wouldn’t have free-rolled his entire IMOP trip (yes—[Pledge Fat Jesus] was dealt in that hand).

I vow to take no leaks this entire trip.

If this story is an IMOP omen, events this March will indeed be the highest and jinkiest ever!
I'm a jerk. I once had wealth, power, and the love of a beautiful woman. Now I only have two things: my friends and, uh, my thermos.

And hopefully the IMOP Champion's Bling!


  1. Please tell me that you have finally incorporated bonus points for hands won with the mighty 2-4.

  2. The official prop bet sheets have not been released yet. We will certainly do something again with the traditional "signature hand" contest. I have lobbied for the deuce-four, but some feel that playing such a strong hand poses insufficient challenge for an elite event like IMOP. If I had to guess, my suspicion is that the leading hand right now is Barbie's 6-3 (a/k/a "the Spanish Inquisition").

  3. Another suggestion: Any bounty tournaments for which knockouts are paid in cash, bonus points for actually rubbing the money on titties at the table while saying, "Who's got the money now?"

  4. "Another suggestion: Any bounty tournaments for which knockouts are paid in cash, bonus points for actually rubbing the money on titties at the table while saying, 'Who's got the money now?'"

    Umm, why would we give bonus points for normal IMOP behavior?

  5. are you disclosing the dates? Any random chance it will be late April so I can watch some of the hilarity ensue?

    - Vook

  6. Vookenmeister,

    Unfortunately, IMOP-V will be held March 4-8. I and a couple of other degenerates will actually arrive March 3 for some pregame action. But if you're going to be in Vegas late April, I may find a way to schedule another trip to Vegas.

  7. What about a last longer bet in any bounty tournaments? Winner gets all bounties collected by any IMOP player.

  8. There will be a signature hand event, but it will be the deuce/trey (2+3=IMOP 5). Deuce/fo hand will be imop 6 for 2011.

    There has always been an element of last longer for IMOP points in the tournaments, usually accompanied by a series of side bets. This year there is a team element to the last longer in each tournament where the team gets points.

    I think the fun part of the team competition will actually be those events held away from the felt. For those in the right age bracket, think Laff-a-Lympics from Saturday morning cartoon fame. Without giving advanced disclosure, these have the best potential for stories/memorable moments of the trip.

  9. If you and others are able to swing it...

    I fly into Vegas on Saturday April 24 and don't leave till the following Sunday, May 2nd. My wife may or may not join me at the end of the trip (depending on how she feels as she will be a little over 5 months pregnant at that time).

    - Vook

  10. If the new schedule at work holds, I should have thurs and friday off...I would love to partake in the IMOP shenanigans!!!

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