On Saturday, I played poker with my old gang for the first time in a couple years. I would say our seriousness far exceeds the stakes except that most of our single-table tournaments end in a chop – dividing the winnings when there are only two or three players — so we can get everyone back at the table.
I watched too much TV growing up. Because of “Happy Days,” I yearned for a hangout like Arnold’s (we did have one, Rocky’s at 14 and Crooks, for about two months until it closed) and I wanted a regular poker game like the one on “The Odd Couple.”
We picked up as if our last episode was only a week ago.
Poor play was analyzed mercilessly until someone else made a poor play. Bad luck wasn’t luck at all but karma meted unto the cosmically degenerate. Someone spilled a drink because someone always spills a drink (sorry about that, Rob). People talked when they should have been dealing. We played one more game than we should have.
Usually, when you bring a group back together, it’s never as good as the first time around. Not so with poker. Needling Mike about a bad beat is one of the premier joys of life. It’s like Christmas morning, and all the gifts are boxes full of his tears.