Players can ‘ride high’ in the saddle

Jan 4, 2005 3:10 AM

Carol, I think we have time today to take a long ride on our horses, so I am going to get Back in the Saddle Again and go for a ride with you into the back country of Arizona.

I have been wishing for a time when we could take the back trails and go riding at our Thousand Pines ranch in Arizona. I want to ride with you all the way today to the top of Bill Williams Mountain.

I love the wind on top of the mountain. It’s always fresh and invigorating.

A good poker player who is in command of situations can be anything he wants to be.

Yes, Carol, I want to tell the folks that a good player could even be a president.

There’s something magic about being in control of the poker game and everything else in life.

The wind sometimes blows cold on top of the mountain, but it is fresh and clean and no one has ever breathed that air before.

I remember a time when I was playing with Jack Straus. There is not time nor space for me to tell you and the folks the stories of me and Jack and the Mississippi River, or the night it cost me $250,000 when I shook my head no to Jack, just before he won the World Series of Poker. But e-mail me at [email protected] and remind me to tell you about me and Jack!

But there is time today for me to tell one of the things that Jack told me: "One day as a lion is better that a thousand years as a lamb."

The most wonderful thing about the air on top of the mountains of Arizona is that in October on a cold crisp morning it seems as if you could almost bite the air. It is the elixir that starts the adrenaline flowing.

That’s the way it is at the poker table when you’re on the top of the mountain, when you’re at the peak of your game.

Its an incredible feeling of accomplishment and victory.

As one of my favorite presidents Teddy Roosevelt said: "Credit belongs to the man who really was in the arena ”¦ who, at best knows in the end the triumph of great achievement. And who, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and cruel souls who know neither victory nor defeat."

Well, honey, let me step down off the horses and let them rest a little while before we start back down the mountain — I think that my horse is a just a little winded after that long ride up the mountain.

We will just let these horses blow a few minutes and I will take the time to tell you about cheating in poker. No, I will just tell you and the folks about cheating in a poker game at the circus or as I call it the lighter side of cheating in poker.

Well, these ol’ circus boys were playing in a poker game. The Rubber man was there, The Elephant man, the Thin man and the Pygmy. They were all playing a little poker as they sat around the poker table in the circus tent.

The pygmy was a little concerned and thought maybe that he was getting cheated. So during a break, he took a thumbtack and punched a little hole through about eight or ten of the cards so that they couldn’t be pulled off the bottom of the deck very easily.

Now then, the Rubber man starts dealing and the Pygmy likes his cards. He knows that before that he was cheated but this time he thinks he has got his best chance because he has nailed the deck so that the Rubber man could not deal off the bottom.

Well the Rubber man gives it a try, but he could not get the card off the bottom of the deck because the Pygmy had put that thumbtack in the bottom 10 cards.

So he looked over at the Pygmy and says, "I’ve been playing poker and dealing for a long time and I’ve cold-decked many a man in my life, but this is the only deck I’ve ever run into that was frozen solid!"

Well, now that the horses have rested a little it will be a lot easier for them going back down Bill Williams Mountain. But just before we go let me give you,

Oklahoma Johnny’s Poker Tip of the Week

If it looks like a duck, and waddles like a duck and quacks like a duck, it probably is a duck!

If the poker game you are playing in looks bad to you — you never win and the same people keep winning night after night — it may be a duck.

Until next remember to stay lucky.