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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Poker and Me

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Frank

Subject: How I Earn A Living

I've been asked a bit about my job so I figured I'd talk about what I do, and how I do it.

I'm generally a cash game player. Which means that I play in games where you exchange money for chips, and I can walk away whenever I want and change any of the chips I have for their value in money. The alternative is tournament play, which is what you see on television where you buy-in to the tournament, and you play until you either have all, or none, of the chips. I've played a tournament occasionally, but I generally stick to cash games. The big difference is with a tournament, you have to beat everyone to make money, in a cash game you only have to beat one person, and it can be the worst player at the table.

One of the biggest reasons my parents basically kicked me out of the house is because they didn't believe I could make a living playing poker, they considered it gambling with my future. Now poker playing does contain a lot of gambling situations, but it's not like rolling a dice for my dinner. What happens is when I get into situations where I need a certain card to win the hand, I calculate the odds of getting that card. If it's only going to come 25% of the time, I make sure that if I win I'm winning more than 4 times what I would be betting in that situation. If I'm consistent and play that hand the same way every time the situation comes up, in the long run I'm going to win money, even though each individual situation may be a gamble.

The trick to that is being able to play for long enough that you get enough of those situations before you run out of money. You should never run out of money while playing poker or you're playing at too high a level. Even if that means you're playing with nickels for months.

I'm not going to say how much money I make or what level I play at, but it's enough to get by. I've been banking money, and I have some loans to pay off, but I haven't made the push yet to play at a higher level. I like to have some extra money to do things with, and often times I splurge and spend the money that I'd need to bankroll to move up to a higher level. I always make sure I have enough saved, and can pay the rent though, I'm not stupid.

I've never been to Las Vegas for the World Series of Poker, but I hear even the cash games during those weeks are great. I suppose a lot of amateur poker players come and want to play. I may go and check it out this year, I'll have to look into it.

While it's always great to not have to get up for work, or have set hours, it's not all flowers and sunshine. I still spend a lot of time working, and I can get very stir crazy never leaving the apartment. Even if I did have a regular job, I don't imagine I could have one where I work from home. It's nice to get out and see the world sometimes, which is why I occasionally find a wireless hub and play from there.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Tequila Hangover

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Ann

Subject: Tequila Hangover

My bladder wakens me from a drunken snooze around 7:30am. I'm oddly not hungover or even tired at this obscenely early hour on a Sunday. I use the bathroom and step out into the living area, and the overpowering smell of lemons greets me. There is a squished lemon wedge ground into the carpet by a chair leg, and a multitude of discarded rinds in a pile on a plate on the table as well as inside shot glasses and strewn about the counter. There are a bunch of shot glasses on the table and counters too; some are sitting in puddles, and some are upside down. There is a soft drip coming from the kitchen area, as a puddle forming on the counter from a bag of ice that was never returned to the freezer slowly melts and overflows onto the floor. I put the bag in the sink to finish melting and grab the dustpan and broom to sweep up the remains of a broken shot glass. As I walk towards the garbage I find that the floor is sticky, probably from spilled tequila. It being much too early to mop the floor and really clean up, I ignore it and open up the fire escape and step out.

The cool metal against my feet, I cast my gaze down and take in the city at this early hour. I feel the first rays of sun warming my skin, and listen to the sounds of New York waking up. I can see people down the street getting their coffee and breakfast and picking up the morning paper. Some of them walk over to the bus stop, and start reading the paper as they wait for the bus to start the day and continue to their destination on this Sunday morning. Some may be going to work, others may be headed to church. Others are just early risers, out for morning errands, or even just jogging. I relax, leaning against the building and take in the sights for a while longer, losing myself in the bustle below.

I reenter the apartment and am again greeted by the powerful lemon scent. From this angle I can really appraise the wreck of a room; six friends and roommates and two bottles of tequila can do plenty of damage. Besides the squished lemon in the carpet, the broken shot glass and the puddles, there is salt everywhere. I can see it in the couch cushions, all over the table, on the floor and in Scott's hair, who I now realize has been passed out on the couch the whole time. There are glasses of all types discarded around the apartment as they'd been emptied the night before, puddles of sour mix, tequila and melted ice, and lemon rinds thrown all over the place. I vaguely remember Scott and Frank having a lemon-rind fight as the night degenerated, and I expect we'll be finding them around the room for weeks to come; especially at the rate we usually clean. As some of the memories of the night before flood back, so does the grogginess and hungover feeling. I pick up a martini glass off the floor before it can be broken, and head back to bed hoping someone else will clean up before I wake again.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Nothing Loosens Lips Like Alcohol

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Ann, Sara, Tabitha, Frank, Billy and Scott.

Subject: Nothing loosens the lips like alcohol

After the game Friday night me and Frank headed over to Union Square to meet the rest of the gang. As we get off the train I call them and it turns out they've also just arrived, so we all go to Max Brenner together. We're about to head in when we're stopped by someone calling most of our names. It's Amy and Sue, two girls who used to live on our floor before moving in with their respective boyfriends. Sue is actually getting married in a couple of months.

Sue: “Hey guys! It's funny running into you, especially today! Me and Amy just decided to meet up and go out and have some drinks tonight. You should come with us, it'll be just like old times!”

I'm in, are you guys okay with skipping chocolate tonight?”

It's a tough choice, but I guess I can skip chocolate for these long as one of them buys me a chocolate Martini where ever we're going.”

Amy: “Certainly! I'll do it, Sue should be saving for her wedding!”

Did you pick a date yet?”

Sue: “Not quite yet, we're decided between two dates in the spring of '08. So what are guys doing out besides getting chocolate?”

We were grabbing dinner at the Corner Bistro, and we just met up with Sara and Frank returning from the game.”

Amy: “The Met game? How'd they do?”

Mets won 3-2, Pettite thought Endy was bunting, instead he swung and hit a two run home run. One more win and Frank loses our bet.”

Amy: “Oooh, a bet. That sounds like fun. You guys going to any more of the games?”

Nope, I'll have to wait until they come to Yankee Stadium to see them beat the Mets I guess.”

We arrived at the bar Amy and Sue were headed to, and found ourselves a semi-empty corner to hang out in. As is typical when we go out to bars, we ended up forming a circle so that we could all talk to each other.

Sue: “You guys look like you're already a little tipsy, a bit too many beers with dinner?”

You know we can never pass up those McSorley's. It's just a shame that the real bar is always so jam packed.”

We had a couple of beers ourself at Shea. It's such a rip off but I can't help myself.”

Just trying to drown your sorrows huh Frank?”


Sue: “So what's new with everyone? What have you guys been up to? Any dates recently?”

I was on a date just last night actually. It was kind of a bore.”

You never did mention how that went. I noticed you didn't come back with him and you certainly weren't home very late.”

Well you know he was a guy from work. He really seemed to not want to talk about anything except work. We talked office politics, coding was just like lunch in the cafeteria.”

What a snooze.”

Exactly, I didn't even have to make up an excuse to part ways after dinner, he wanted to go home because we had work the next morning.”

As I recall, you're asleep early most nights too.”

Yeah yeah, we don't all have the luxury of your schedule.”

Amy: “Still doing well with the Poker I take it?”

It pays the bills, and it certainly beats rising with the sun and trudging off to work.”

Sue “I imagine it would. So Tabitha, you think you did well on your finals?”

I think so yeah, I wish I didn't have to wait so long to find out my grades.”

Tab, are you chewing on the appetizers menu?”

Tabitha pulls the wad of paper out of her mouth and opens it up. “Looks like it, you want more food?”

I'm not into paper as a snack actually, I'll pass.”

Sue “So how about the rest of you? Anything to write home about?”

I drove the M train this week!”

Yes, that's all very exciting. You still travel a lot for work Amy?”

Amy: “Not quite as much, but still some. I have more seniority now that one of the older guys quit. Means I get to pick and choose more about which trips to take. Last week I was actually in Vegas; best trip for work ever.”

I bet. You should have told me, I would've flown with you. I rarely pass up an excuse to go to Vegas, it's like my Mecca.”

Yeah, he actually makes sure every time he plays poker on-line he faces towards Las Vegas.”

Amy: “Ha! Well maybe next time I go out there I'll give you a call. I assume you feel much the same about other gambling places? Atlantic City? Reno?”

Yup, although AC is close enough that I really don't need an excuse to go there.”

We continued chatting and drinking and having a grand time late into the night, but none of us really remember much after that. Tabitha did develop a small cut on her lip, and Frank's arm felt sore the next day, and it certainly wasn't from cheering for the Yankees.

The Mets slaughtered the Yankees on Saturday, having starting pitcher Darrel Rasner leave with a broken finger in the first inning killed them. The Yankees managed to eke out the third game so Frank will not be my slave, but he does owe me a couple of drinks. I'm thinking of ordering every drink with top shelf liquor.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Corner Bistro Bash

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Ann, Sara, Tabitha, Frank, Billy and Scott.

Subject: Big Blogged Week and the Corner Bistro

We seem to have plenty to say but aren't saying it. Frank never blogged about the visit from his friend, and Sara never mentioned her date. Frank has something planned about his 'job', and how he makes a living by playing poker, and Tabitha's off for the summer and hopefully will find some time to do some blogging. We encourage you to comment or email us at, the emails go to an account we all share that's usually open up on the computer in the living room.

Friday night to celebrate Tabitha finishing her finals for the semester we all, minus Frank and Sara who were at the Mets game, went to the Corner Bistro to have some burgers and beers.

So how long is the wait?”

Probably close to an hour. I'll order the drinks, since we're basically waiting on line in front of the bar. McSorley's everyone?”

Yup, Dark.”

The darker, the better!”

I'll take a light, just to be different.”

Don't worry Ann, you're plenty different already.”

I'm getting light too, so you're not that different actually.”

Still different than them though.”

Yup, and that's definitely a good thing.”

What's so bad about being like us?”

Yeah, what's so wrong about me? Billy I could see, but me? I'm awesome!”

Billy punches Scott in the shoulder. “I should make you pay for my beer for that.”

Here we are, beers and burgers soonish. Should be a nice evening.”

Don't forget chocolate. We're going to Max Brenner after this right?”

It closes at 11, we might want to go somewhere else afterwards for more drinks.”

Burp castle? Bartender's in monk robes, and tasty Belgian beers?”

I have yet to see them actually wear those robes. I think you just like the naked angels in the paintings!”

Oh Tabitha, you know me so well.”

I'm so hungry. Hopefully it's faster then they said.”

Yeah, I definitely could go for a burger. At least we can sate my appetite with beer while I wait!”

Wow Billy, you finished your beer already? Good job.”

Me too! I'll get us some more Billy boy.”

Hey, I can't help it if the beer's good.”

That's true. So did Sara and Frank say they'd meet us later?”

They said it depends on the game and if we're still out by the time they can get back to the city.”

If they don't kill each other on the way back. It's a long trip back on the 7 for gloating.”

Of course they'll come out and meet us. Either way they're going to want a beer, celebratory or sorrowfully.”

Beer! The cause and solution to all of our problems!”

Exactly. It looks like we're only third or fourth in line now for a table. We'll get some of those delicious burgers yet!”

Billy catches Ann as she stumbles into him. “Looks like Ann could use some meat in her.”

That's what she said!”

Billy and Scott high-five.

I'm fine! I meant to fall into you, really.”

We get seated, order our food and another round of drinks. An hour wait provides plenty of time to down some beers, and we're all getting pretty trashed as our food arrives.

Some mighty fine burgers here. This was a really terrific suggestion Tabitha.”

Wonderful, so wonderful! This burgers are orgasmic! Such a fine specimen of meat!”

As is her.” Scott says, indicating a blond woman standing at the bar.

Way out your league there Scott. Stop ogling her and finish your burger.”

I'm kind of full, I don't know if I'll have room for chocolate.”

There is always room for chocolate! Besides, we still have to get over there, sit down, and order. That's enough time to digest some.”

We finish our burgers, and our server returns with our check. We finish off the beers, pay, and head over to Union Square. We step out of the subway, and my phone rings. It's Sara, they also just got off the train in Union Square. It was a quick game, the Mets won, and they're ready for some chocolate and some more drinking, so we head to Max Brenner: Chocolate by the bald man.

To be continued...

Friday, May 18, 2007

Subway Series Bet

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Sara, Frank

Subject: Subway Series Bet

Ann's been bugging me to make a post about my friend who visited Monday. It would link in with an earlier post she made and she wants to try to have some post continuity on the blog, but I don't feel like writing about that right now. She'll have to settle for a post about the wager me and Sara made on the ballgames this weekend.

That was an awesome win yesterday, the Yankees don't have a prayer to stop that kind of momentum.”

The Yankees are going to start hitting eventually, it very well could be tonight. That is if Oliver Perez can find the plate, otherwise we'll just walk all over you.”

Oh, he'll find the plate. Maybe he'll even allow less hits then his last outing.”

There is no way the Yankees are being no-hit! Don't be ridiculous. I think the Yankees will come out of it, they're due for one of these 12 of 15 stretches to get right back in it. The Mets and the Red Sox are due for some losing too.”

I wouldn't count on that. Would you like to bet on it?”

Sure, what should we wager?”

If the Mets win the series, you buy my alcohol when we go out next weekend. If the Yankees win, I'll buy yours. Either way we go up to the roof Monday night to see the”> Empire State Building displaying the colors of the victors.”

Sounds good, but lets make it a little richer. If either team sweeps, we do the whole slave thing. You serve me my food, get me a drink when I ask..etc. Nothing crazy, just the normal stuff I don't feel like getting up to do.”

Sounds good to me. I'll have you take out the trash, or update the blog when Ann starts in on me.”

Speaking of which, weren't you supposed to update about your date as part of Ann's continuity thing? How'd it go?”

It was..interesting. I will update, I just got back a little late and worked all day today and then we're going to Shea tonight.”

Maybe we should escape to Shea before Ann notices we haven't updated like she asked.”

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The Inferior Starbucks

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Billy and Scott.

Subject: The Inferior Starbucks

I'm working the M line this week, and as usual I occasionally stop off at different stops, just for the sake of wandering around areas of this great city I don't normally see. So far my experiences with the M train are not as nice as the trains I usually work on. The speakers on a couple of the trains have been really crappy too. I imagine there aren't as many lost tourists on the M, most of the riders of the Nassau Street Local probably know where they're going and where to get off, but that's no excuse for faulty equipment. I got off somewhere in Queens, and went looking for something interesting. I didn't really find much, and on my way back to the train I decided to stop at the Starbucks on the corner.

It was a hot day, I figured I would get a Frappachino. Easy enough right?”

Oh, I hate making Frappachino's. They're such a pain. I wish everyone would just order drip coffee.”

Well anyway, I ordered the Java Chip and I don't know if she didn't hear me or just didn't feel like getting the coffee, but she made me a Double Chocolate frapp instead.”

Oooh, a lazy barista. Surely you've seen one of those before?”

Of course I have, haven't you noticed I always order simple things when you're making them?”

You're just afraid of what I'll do to them!”

Exactly! Anyway, I like the chocolate one fine enough so I didn't ask for a new one, just went to get a straw and sit down at a table.”

Well that seems pretty normal.”

There were no straws, and when I asked for one and told her there were no more out there, she glared at me and finally handed me a straw.”

Manager must've been away or sleeping in the back or something, so she was taking advantage of being lazy.”

Unfortunately the condition of the seating area left much to be desired. One of the comfy chairs was very obviously stained with spilt coffee, and the only unoccupied table was very very wobbly. I ended up just taking the coffee to go back on the train.”

Hey! Aren't you not supposed to have drinks on the train?”

Oh? Are you going to tattle on me? After all the crap I see you do at your job?”

You mean I don't do a good job? I work tonight, come by and I'll make you a much better Frappachino.”

Uh Oh. No adding any of your sugar-free arsenic syrup though.”

Would I do that? Don't come by at six though, some buddies are stopping by with something I need to take care of.”

I'm not sure I even want to know. I'll stop by in the evening.”

Monday, May 14, 2007

What's Up This Week?

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Ann, Sara, Tabitha, Frank, Billy and Scott.

Subject: Our Plans For The Upcoming Week

It's Sunday night and we're all standing around in the kitchen. When we stand around and chat, we often do it in the kitchen; I think the presence of snacks and a counter to lean on keep the conversation flowing. We all recently arrived home after being out, some of us visiting our mothers, the others just running errands. A belated Happy Mother's Day to all the mother's out there. As the early birds start to think about getting to bed, conversation naturally drifts to the upcoming week, and any interesting plans we may have.

I've got some finals this week, but I was thinking it'd be nice to go out to dinner Friday. How does the Corner Bistro sound?”

Well me and Sara will be at Shea Stadium for the subway series game on Friday otherwise I'd go. Maybe if you're all still out when we get back.”

I'm always in for the Bistro. Plus they have McSorley's on tap, that's always a plus.”

Amen to that!”

Well I'll have to check my schedule, but that sounds good to me too. Maybe we can L it over to Union Square and have dessert at Max Brenner's afterwards?”

Sure, nothing washes out the bad taste of finals like yummy chocolatey goodness.”

That's the place with all the weird glasses and mugs right?”

That's the one. We might want to goto the 2nd avenue one though, it's usually less crowded.”

So anyone doing anything exciting during the actual week?”

I've actually got a date Thursday night. I don't know if it'll be exciting or not though.”

Oooo...Sara's got a date! With who? Where are you going? You bringing him back here?”

Just some guy from work. Maybe I'll bring him back here if it's going badly, meeting you is always a good way to scare off dates.”

Ouch, that hurts me!” Scott says, grabbing at his heart in jest.

Going anywhere good?”

We're just going to dinner. I told him he could pick the place. I'll let you know where we end up.”

A friend of mine is coming to the city for the day on Wednesday. I told her I'd show her around, and she mentioned she'd like to goto a museum or something. She's only going to be here for something like 8 hours though, so I'll have to figure out something fun for us to do. We'll probably get dinner somewhere near Penn Station before she gets on a train if any of you wanted to join us.”

Hmm, she hot?”

She's pretty good looking yes, but she has a boyfriend. You're still welcome to join us though.”


It's nothing real exciting, but I'm going to be working the M train this week. I don't usually work that route, it'll be a nice change of pace.”

I'm not sure I've ever been on the M train actually.”

You know I always welcome visitors on my trains.”

You mean besides the millions of New Yorkers who visit every day? Yeah I know. I've got too much studying to do for excursions to Queens though. So much studying in fact, that I need to goto bed and get an early start on that. Goodnight everyone.”

Goodnight! Don't let the bed bugs bite!”

Eww! Didn't we tell you to stop saying that? We've all heard too many bed bug horror stories!”

Sunday, May 13, 2007

6th Floor Goes To The Movies: 28 Weeks Later..

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Ann, Sara, Tabitha, Frank, Billy and Scott.

Subject: 6th Floor goes to the movies: 28 weeks later

This post is about 28 weeks later. As we will do with all new movie discussions, We refrain from mentioning much in terms of plot, although we do discuss possibilities for a third movie(without mentioning how this one ends). Continue reading at your own risk.

Well that movie pretty much sucked.”

I didn't think it was that bad. I do love how the zombies in these movies are a little smarter and faster than ordinary zombie movies.”

Smart zombies. Who would have thought? I'm surprised at how empty the theater was. I didn't think it would sell out, but I doubt there were 40 people there.”

Well the first movie didn't do spectacular either. It only made about 45 million in the US. It preformed pretty consistently over the first couple of weeks, so I guess it just doesn't have the 'must see' draw of an opening day crowd. Still, the crowd was paltry. I wonder if they'll even bother making another sequel.”

Well, they've made some sequels of some pretty bad movies, no reason to think they wouldn't make a sequel out of this if they feel like it.”

I think they probably will make a sequel. This movie really focused a lot on hope. I think they can build on that for a third movie. Although I don't know if the time frame really fits. 28 months later might be too long.”

How about 28 fortnights later? That's just less than a year.”

28 fortnights later just doesn't have the right ring to it though.”

That's the only smaller unit of time. I guess they could do 28 years later and do some sort of aftermath re-outbreak type thing. Or civilization has been completely decimated and there's a small sector of survivors trying to rebuild the world.”

28 countries later? They have the infection spread through a bunch of countries. It'll be almost like a full out war.”

I don't care, after two bad movies I'm definitely not seeing a third.”

I agree, I was pretty disappointed with this one. I know the jumpy camera work is standard in zombie movies, but it really annoyed me today. I could barely keep up with what was happening during the action scenes.”

Did anyone else think the boy was a girl for the first half of the movie?”

The long hair threw me for a second, but certainly not for half the movie. The helicopter guy, he was from Lost right?”

"Harold Perrineau He's also Link from the second two Matrix movies.”

Okay, it's my turn to pick our next movie.”

Well Pirates comes out in two weeks, I think we all want to see that.”

Pirates it is then. But we have to see Live Free or Die Hard when it comes out.”

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Guy's Night In

Welcome to the 6th floor.

Today's contributors are: Frank, Billy and Scott.

Subject: Guy’s Night In

I was playing Dr. Mario with Ann when Tabitha came and got her, and then they left. They said they were meeting Sara somewhere. I noted to Scott and Frank that the apartment was girl-free at the moment, so we decided to do some guy things while we had the chance.

Why do we still drink crap like this? Who bought it?” asked Frank as he handed out some of the Coors Light in the fridge.

Tabitha I think. We don’t have anything better?”

There were some Bacardi Silver’s. I think that would be a blow to our manly guy night though.”

Put something better in then. Dr. Mario is seriously not a man’s game.”

MLB: The Show? Or we could just watch SportsCenter.”

Skip SportsCenter. Look, there’s a poker game on.”

That’d be like watching you work. How lame is that? Watching poker is totally not manly. Playing poker might be, but I’m not playing poker with you anyway.”

So video games it is then. So where do you think the girls went anyway?”

I heard them say something about Sara.”

Must be. She’s usually asleep by this time. I wonder were she went.”

Maybe she snapped under the pressure and killed someone.”

Maybe they’re bailing her out of jail then!”

I don’t think you get out that easily if you kill someone. She’s probably just at a co-workers apartment. I don’t know why Tabitha and Ann had to go find her though.”

Action movies! Billy, pop in one of those shoot-em-up films and I'll get us some snacks. We do still have snacks right?”

I think we do. You live here too, just check. Or did you forget how to use the cabinet?”

I just leave everything I need on the counter so I don't have to use the cabinets.”

Doesn't Tabitha yell at you about that all the time?”

He has a cabinet full of half-eaten stuff, because Tabitha gets annoyed and puts them away, and then if he asks she won't tell him where she put it.”

Oh yeah, that's where those moths came from that time. The half-used tin of hot chocolate that Scott had forgotten about all year.”

I'm just an opportunistic eater. If it's not right in front of me, I usually don't want it that much.”

First cabinet to the left of the sink, there are some pretzels and potato chips in there. Lets start watching.”

There are some bowls in the cabinet next to the fridge.”

Bowls? Who needs bowls? Just for that comment, you're writing the next blog entry to get Ann to stop bugging us for a while.”