Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Poker Prodigy

If you know me well, you know I love to play poker. If you don't know me well, then you should know, I LOVE TO PLAY POKER. I have been playing cards since I was a kid. Thanks to my wonderful Grandparents, who let me sit with them as they played nightly games at their cabin with friends, I learned games like Texas Hold 'Em, Omaha, Stud, 5-Card Draw, and wilder games like Chicago, Dueces Wild, and many others at a young age.

I not only had the chance to see my grandma smile broadly as she raked in a pile of chips, but we were taught card etiquette from the beginning. I was probably no older than 5 when I received my first poker lesson. "Always cut the cards toward the dealer!" -Grandpa Clifford. :)

I was reading my favorite blog this morning ( and she was talking about her father and how he is an eternal supporter of his children. It reminded me of my father and how truly blessed I have been to have the parents I do. They support my sisters and I and are our biggest cheerleaders. As I was reflecting and smiling to myself at the love and support they have given me over my 31 years, I thought I'd share one of my favorite stories about one of my favorite people (my father). The story covers one of my favorite hobbies (yes that's right, I LOVE POKER!), too.

A few years ago, I was playing in a poker tournament at a local casino, my father was also playing. He was put out just before the final table and decided to stick around and cheer on his eldest daughter. As the tournament ended, and I collected my profits, yes I finished in 1st place, I turned to my dad who was glowing with pride. Now keep in mind this isn't a world series of poker win and my cash winnings were probably not anything more than $400, but he was proud all the same.

Later that day, I was talking to my mom and she started to laugh as she relayed a conversation she had with my father. It went something like this.

Dad: "You know Marilyn, you've never gone to watch her play."
Mom: "Watch who? play what?"
Dad: "Kristin, play poker. She got 1st today, ya know?"
Mom: "Oh that's great! I guess I didn't realize it was a spectator sport." (she said in a joking manner, my father was totally serious)

Side note-My youngest sister is a gifted athlete and my family traveled far and wide when she was growing up to watch her play fastpitch. My father was (and is) her #1 fan. I tell you that because to him my poker playing is just like my sister playing fastpitch (which is an actual spectator sport). To him, I am the Bobby Fisher of poker. P.S. I am not the Poker Prodigy. :)

My mom and I laugh about it still. Not because we are making fun of him, but because he is truly proud of us in all our successes, even the fact that I can take down a pot here and there. I attached a picture of my dad and I after I finished 8th in a large poker tournament this year. He stood and watched me for 8 hours as I moved closer and closer to the final table. P.S. I lasted about 10 minutes at the final table and enjoyed every single second.



  1. You truly are lucky and not just at cards :)

    My father passed away before I got into poker, but my mother thinks it is just the most terrible thing on the planet. I sure wish I had the support that you do. Go get em!

  2. Ebes, I love that you love poker. I am down to go to vegas with you anytime! You are lucky to have your family so close....miss you!