WSOP Main Event: Flusfeder makes Day 2

Otis' Note: Novelist David Flusfeder qualified on PokerStars for the WSOP Main Event and has agreed to tell us his story as he makes his way through the field.

by David Flusfeder

As a Main Event novice, my first aim was to survive the day, the second was to double up. For most of the day, playing conservatively, my good hands never finding much opposition, I drifted between eight and twelve thousand chips. I played 'uptown', by the rail in the center of the room, my table between Jennifer Tilly's and Daniel Negreneau's, who had an adoring crowd around him, teenybopper poker-babes eager even to hear him analyse his golf swing; and I played 'downtown', way to the back of the room, where there was far more yelling and testosterone needling going on.

Down to five thousand, a pair of kings doubled me back up, courtesy of the chip leader at the time, William Thorsson. And then I was moved again, for the final half-hour. My first table had had a bracelet-wearer in John Gale, my last one another bracelet, on the wrist of Brian Wilson, who had about forty thousand or so in chips. He said that he had made a vow at the dinner break that when he got to thirty he wasn't going to play another hand. After I sat down, he played the next five hands, zapping out raises, paying people off, winning a couple of pots.

With five minutes to go I was dealt aces. I had over 15,000 chips, just about enough to play with on day 2. I could have made a value bet. That would probably have been the smart thing to do. Instead I fired in the largest overbet of my life -- the blinds were 200, 400, and I bet 3000. Wilson said he had just been dealt his favourite hand. He was itching for action, but fought manfully with himself and listened to my clear announcement: I've got aces and if anyone wants to take them on good luck to you: otherwise I'm happy with the blinds and the antes and a return for day 2. He folded. I took the blinds and antes, and was up to a mediocre 17,950 in chips, which was the highest amount I'd had in front of me all day.

I relaxed. Wilson didn't. He couldn't stop himself from playing the next pot, got outdrawn, and shouted 'F***!' For a moment there was silence around us. The so-called 'F-bomb' rule with its 10-minute suspension for any swearer had been vigilently enforced throughout the day. There was no floor person around, so Wilson called for one himself. 'I just said "f***". I said it twice now. Do I get suspended?' The suspension was enforced, and a relieved Wilson would come back a few minutes later to bag his chips and not have to play another hand.

I'll be back on Wednesday -- and that's the most glorious and adrenaline-inducing sentence I've ever written.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in World Series of Poker