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Good times roll on the river

Dec 16, 2002 10:57 PM

   I want to tell you today about Laughlin, Nevada. Laughlin is about a 90-minute drive from Las Vegas, (if you keep your speed under the legal speed limits).

   I do not recommend that you break any of the laws or rules of the road, because you can only save 10 or 15 minutes if you drive 80 or faster. Just drop back to 65 and enjoy the drive. Be sure to stop in Searchlight at the casino for a break and enjoy their world famous 10¡ cup of coffee. Also take a little time to look at the mining museum that they have there.

   In Laughlin you will find a not so little town, but you will like it because it is a lot like old time Las Vegas. It has everything that Las Vegas does plus, it has the beautiful Colorado River flowing past, flanked by Laughlin and Bullhead City, Arizona.

   It has all of the stars in the showrooms that used to play Las Vegas when I was a lot younger. When comps were easy and rooms were $4 a night and shows were less than that because you could get comped to everything. (If you showed a little action at the table.)

   Well, in Laughlin you can still get most everything comped. (If you show a little action.)

   Be sure to drop by and see Connie Cox who is the cardroom manager at the River Palms. I will lay you 8-to-5 that she will buy your dinner. If you play a few hands of poker in her cardroom and don’t miss the Colorado Belle, where James Vinson is the ever present cardroom manager.

   Most every night, Jim will roll in the seafood and goodie platters for all his poker players, and on Friday and Saturday night the action is the best I have seen in any cardroom in quite a long time.

   Last weekend the action was so good that I got my pick hung in his 5/10 with a full-kill eight and better Omaha game and had to stay with it until 2 a.m. before I was able to get the money. Those old boys and young ladies will play with you.

   A lot of the poker players are snowbirds. They come in their RV’s and campers from Canada and other cold places to spend a few weeks or months in Laughlin each year to fish, see the shows, play the casino games and enjoy a little poker with The Seniors on the river.

   The poker players in that Omaha game did not know that I have been playing poker for over 65 years and they made me prove it all over again to them that I had not forgot how to play.

   Well I sure enjoyed the game and look forward to returning to Laughlin in the spring of ’03 when I will be hosting The Seniors Poker Tournament with Bob Thompson and Connie Cox at the River Palms.

   Now for the Oklahoma Johnny poker tip of the week.

   Enter the game slowly. Being a poker player is an occupation that requires a great understanding of the world in general. When you first sit down in a game, I recommend that you sit there for a while and observe before you play a single hand. See what is happening first, how the flow of the game is going. Use your mind during this period of observation to try to understand the people you’re playing against. You are teaching yourself restraint. You’re trying to determine how they play, what their tells are, and the nature of their betting partners. Then when you have gotten acquainted with the game, it’s OK to win the money and then go on home.

   My wife Carol say’s that if I want to play poker at the Orleans No Limit Hold’em tournament next Monday night that I should listen to my own advise and not play so fast. But I tell her that I teach a lot better than I play. And when you reach my age, you have to play a lot more hands because I don’t buy any green bananas.

   Remember until next time to STAY LUCKY!

   Editors Notes: “Oklahoma Johnny” is the author of the book “Gentleman Gambler” and the founder of “The Seniors” World Championship of Poker and “The Seniors” Charities. You may contact Johnny by e-mail at [email protected]. or through his website at