Fanning the flames of conspiracy

I don't know what I expected, really, but I think there was a part of me that wanted to see David Williams in footie pajamas.

It was 6am. The sky was still dark. The Sefton Hotel's fire alarm was blaring. It was the kind of sound only the dead or dead-drunk could ignore. Team PokerStars Pro, Team Online, and most of the assembled media here on the Isle of Man are all calling the Sefton home this week. I was with them, and I was disappointed.

Every single person who came out of the hotel was fully dressed. Liv Boeree, Fatima Moreira de Melo, Barry Greenstein...all of them looked like they were ready to go grab breakfast. Worse? Most of them were smiling.


This worried me in a way I didn't necessarily expect. Who were these people? They looked happy, dressed, and well-adjusted at 6am. To put a finer point on it, nobody looked the least bit annoyed at getting out of bed and standing out in the cold. This isn't how poker players act. Unless they are still awake playing a 6am, that hour is one they don't recognize under their own personal systems of governance.

And yet, there they were. David Williams wasn't wearing panda jammies. Neither were Liv and Fatima. They all had to be up to do a meet and greet before lunch, and some of them were returning to play the tournament. And they were being nice about being up a 6am! It was frustrating in a way I can't describe without resorting to hyperbole.

As I stood there in the cold, I found my mood changing. I looked at the people around me, and most of them were smiling. There was a group bonhomie, a spirt of "we're all in this cray thing together." I wanted to hug people or lead a group song. (I didn't, and that kind of restraint is probably why I'm still allowed to write here.)

Since then, I've had some time to sleep and think. The more of the latter I've done, it's occurred to me that there might be something a little more nefarious at work here. Why?

Because this same thing happened to many of the same people at EPT London in Season 9.

And it happened again at EPT London in Season 10.

Oh, yes, and it happened at the UKIPT Brighton two years ago.

You can divine from that what you like, but I'm calling conspiracy on the whole lot. Something is amiss here. Poker players aren't supposed to be happy at 6am any more than fate should allow fire alarms that early.

This will be a quiet investigation, friends, but I'm going to get to the bottom of this. If you see me in Supermanx (The Isle of Man version of Superman, of course) pajamas, you know why.

Brad Willis in the PokerStars Head of Blogging

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in UKIPT