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A few words for the upstarts

May 11, 2004 1:16 AM

Carol, honey, I know I talk too much, I write too much, I play poker too much and forget too much. So I got up early this morning so I could feed the dog (Blazee), feed the two cats (Trouble and Cash), take out the trash and make coffee.

Yes, I remember that I am to put gas in your car, have it washed, go to the post office and then swing by the printer, drop by and pick up your glasses, take my new suit to the cleaners, go to the bank and cash a check and get a fill of cash for us to play with over the weekend.

Now, I just know that I am forgetting something. Oh, yes. While I am up early I will just sit down and write a couple of columns for "Back in the Saddle Again."

There are so many wonderful things happening in poker today. "The Seniors" World Championship of Poker and all the senior events around the world: in Paris, Connecticut, Las Vegas, Reno and Mississippi.

Then there’s all the new live action players (they play poker as if they were double parked) who have seen poker on television and are now playing with us on "The Seniors" Internet poker room to the world

And they all dream of being the new champion of the world of poker, and of being one of the new celebrities of poker with millions of dollars in their pockets.

Let’s take a closer look at these young pistols.

The young guns, who a few years ago were asking for help to get into a satellite so that they could just play in a poker tournament, now walk a little differently and their nose is just a little out of joint .

I have seen them on the way up and I will see many of them on the way down.

The new young guns — the whippersnappers — who have caught the brass ring don’t remember or even know the people who helped them up the ladder.

A few of them walk around like they are a little bit better than the other poor fellow.

Who had the aces when they had the kings but when a king came on the river, they very suddenly became a world champion and the other poor poker player who finished second is remembered by no one.

But poker is kind of like life in many ways. Players are born into the world of poker. A baby must sit alone, must learn to talk the talk, must learn to stand, must walk before it can run.

When the baby is old enough to play poker in a casino, the novice poker player must learn again to sit, and must learn the talk so that he can do the poker walk. And if he is lucky or unlucky enough to win a big one — he must learn to walk a little differently.

Yes, dear, I was once a baby, a novice poker player during World War II, and cut my teeth on poker in the card barns of California and on the ships of the United States Navy.

Yes, I won all the money in the United States Navy and I learned to do the sailor walk.

Yes, I had a little swagger I must admit, but my head size stayed the same and I did remember all my other sailor shipmates and when we made liberty, I put on the party.

  Now, I have just made a few of my friends, the new rich young poker millionaires, mad.

But I also know that one or two of the folks whom I have played poker with and may have even played in a few tournaments against, will have fun when they play poker and that they are the true champions of poker.

Moreover, the folks are the true champions of life and the living of it.

"Oklahoma Johnny" Poker Tip of the Week

It does not matter if we win or lose — a hundred years from now no one will remember.

But it matters how we play the game. Lose like a champion, when you lose!

But if you win, you have an added responsibility to win and to act like a champion.

Until next time remember to always stay lucky.