2007 World Series: Has Anyone Seen ElkY's Lobster?
by Simon Young
Many poker players like to use a lucky charm when they play. Greg Raymer, of course, has his fossil, Isabelle Mercier has a skull and Humberto Brenes uses a shark. Team PokerStars' ElkY is no different. For as long as I can remember, he has used a "lucky" red lobster to guard over his cards. But when I passed by his table today, something was wrong: The lobster was missing in action.
ElkY in Copenhagen....with lobster on the felt
ElkY takes up the story: "I lent it to a friend yesterday to bring him good luck in his Day 1. Unfortunately it did not work - he went out on the very last hand of the night! As a result he went out on the town and, of course, I have not seen him since. So now I have no lobster to look after me!"
So has "Lobstergate" affected ElkY's play or, more to the point, his luck? Not a chance - he's up to more than 50,000 after starting the day with 20,900. If he makes it deep without his crustacean pal, the little fella might be looking for a new job. That's presuming he ever comes back, of course.
Sitting on ElkY's right, meanwhile, is PokerStars qualifier Tom Pacelli from New York, who got here thanks to a $16 double shootout satellite and is nurturing a steady stack of about 45,000. Tom runs a liquor store back home, so will have no problem toasting any success in the Main Event. He's pictured below with lobster-less ElkY behind him...
Finally, on my latest tour around the Amazon Room, I spotted what I thought was an Italian PokerStars qualifier, given that he was sporting a jacket emblazoned with the word "Italia" (I fancy I should have been a detective). But I was a stumped to find he was Frenchman Nicolas Atlan, who works as a floor manager at the famous Aviation Club de France in Paris, and who got here in the $650 PokerStars satellite.
So, why is a Frenchman wearing an Italian jacket? "It is my lucky coat," he said, and it's working - he's up to a tasty 170,000 chips. Let's hope he doesn't lend his jacket to a friend. Just ask ElkY what can happen.