Poker and War

I was invited by my buddy Slavek to go play some no-limit hold ’em at a cash game at his buddy’s house. There were seven of us there and they were all working for dotcom companies, obviously doing pretty well off with tech backgrounds. The guy who owned the house was doing pretty well for himself and his wife — huge house with lots of recently purchased stuff. I didn’t really fit in with these guys.

I played pretty conservatively all night — didn’t bluff much except to steal some pots. There weren’t any crazy bluffs at all really — people were playing straight up for the most part. So I just waited for good cards and bombed some people with traps.

One of the guys asked me what the troops thought of Iraq, knowing I used to be in the Army. I diplomatically said that you can find a different opinion from each soldier you talk to. I said more question what we’re doing over there than they used to. I also said that it doesn’t really affect the soldiers’ abilities to do their job — they’re still highly motivated and they’re earning good money and they get to hang out with their buddies who’ve they’ve trained with for so long.

Then the guy asks me what would happen if we left, what with Sunni and Shi’ite conflicts, and angrily throws in a comment about his imagining the troops are tired of “those liberal pussies”. I said, “Liberal pussies??” I told him I was one of those people who agreed with pulling out immediately, and that it was presumptuous to assume that the US could fix the situation at all over there.

The topic then sort of moved on. If I were more of a prick I would’ve bullied him about why he hasn’t enlisted to fight in this epic “war”. But I wanted to remain civil. Besides, people get pretty pissed off when you question their manliness. When did the military turn partisan, anyway?

The buy-in was $20 with unlimited re-buys. I finished with about $111, no re-buys. I’ll take it.