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There’s a very kind woman, a weathergirl, at a local TV station, who has a problem with e-mail. Let’s call her the “brick.” She moved to the South from a small midwestern town, and had no premonition of the impending culture shock. Her interview with the station, where she’s on the air right now, went well. She’s incredibly qualified for the sbobet job, has all the seals and certifications, and the other employees, her co-workers and new friends, thought she was a joy to be around.

So why isn’t she happy?

E-mail is a bitch.


There are a million ways to suffer the slings and arrows. These days, the archer remains unseen. Otis says the most outwardly egotistical are usually the most sensitive, which means he watches too much Dr. Phil. But beneath every silly pop-psych gimmick is a glimmer of obvious truth. I have a big ego and I’m a very sensitive guy.

I wonder sometimes about the chatter in online poker. It’s competitive by its nature, but usually its just nasty. I used to enjoy a stupid ramble with the dopes from Missoula or Mississippi, I’d tell them I’m watching “Alien vs Predator” and they’d tell me it’s awful. Again, that’s obvious, but people feel its worth a mention.

These days I have to ignore the whole thing. Half the time you get the baiters, who want to push you off your game. I’m not easily susceptible to that. The rest are whining like children over a beat, not always bad. How many times have we seen some douchebag bust out of a $5MTT on a very bad beat, and then launch into a hateful tirade like someone raped his mother? Grow up moron, you can’t buy a pack of Vegas smokes for that. It’s really awfully sad.

I suppose the problem is the supposed anonymity of the internet. People snipe at others because they never see the impact of their words. They never feel it either. Someone on a cursing diatribe, face to face, is likely to get their face pounded. It’s the same problem faced by “The Brick.”


In my line of work there are about a dozen, probaly more, anonymous websites where people spread gossip, rumors, and hatred of the on-air folks. I’ve been the subject of quite a few. When my work schedule changed several high traffic, subscriber-based sites told the world I’d been fired. We had one man, a former weather guesser, who was the subject of a “I wouldn’t trust him near my children…” campaign. It was totally false, and probably criminal. But, again, the poster wasn’t traced. They can range from flattering to threatening and it’s all part of the job, but I wonder if people really know how it feels?

“The Brick” would get those e-mails all the time, and some were incredibly mean. All female TV types have it worst, because people will write an e-mail to the station just to tell you they think you’re ugly. Good at your job? Perhaps. I don’t like you and I want to hurt you? For sure. What possesses a person? I’ve seen “The Brick,” again one of the nicest people I’ve ever met, close to tears in the middle of the day because someone said something more hurtful than you’d imagine.


In a recent issue of TIME, there’s the old looking ahead to the future bit. One of the experts offered this, “the internet is like alcohol, it causes people to act like what they really are.” I shudder to think that’s true, but perhaps we’ve learned something from online poker. The stupid chat window diatribes are only a start.

We’ve seen out friends, the poker bloggers, draw deep likes of division at times, over things that would never divide real people. Don’t like the way a blogger writes, why not post an entire column of insulting garbage to tell them they’re a rotten soul. Don’t like the financial foundations of a blog itself, well, obviously the writers are worthless scum. I work with dozens of writers, I don’t think ALL of them are great, but I’d never cruise by to tell them I think they suck. Why? Because only assholes would do that.

But online, let the hatred flow!!


Notice this, by the way, about the best online bloggers. Dr. Pauly does not talk trash about other people. He makes observations, sometimes very funny ones, but they’re never made with the sole intention of causing hurt.

Neither do BadBlood or Maudie. The best rise about the petty.

I promise to do the same.

It’s true that some of the best poker players are notorious jerks, Hellmuth or Matusow, but I contend they’re famous in the same way as Omarosa. We all know who they are, and they’ve gained additional fame by acting badly, but we don’t like them. We never will. I hope not.

When you read this blog, we will stick to poker. Or, at least, things that happen while we play poker… or think about it… or on the way to or from a poker game… or involving people who play poker.

We want to be the best. My ego demands it.

We won’t stoop to hatred to make it happen.

Neither should you.

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