Inside the New York Underground

by , Mar 25, 2009 | 2:34 pm

Semi-related to all the activity going on today … there’s a great story in Salon about poker:

A city awash in cards
Inside New York’s underground poker scene, where no one thinks about the recession, or their rent money, when there’s a good hand to be played.

Hi, my name is Jim, and I have a gambling problem.

I told myself the last time was the last time, but here I am, in another bind: $1,000 in chips resting anxiously on the felt in front of me, and the ace-queen of hearts in my hand.

My lone opponent is Al, an egg-shaped old wiseguy who breathes heavy when he has a winner. Right now he’s taking up most of the oxygen in this three-story walk-up.

The rational part of my brain is screaming at me. “Fold, you stupid motherfucker. That’s half a month’s rent you are about to toss into the pot on a draw.” But Al is legendary for losing and that’s all the compulsive part of my brain can focus on. “Maybe he’s bluffing,” it whispers. “Move all-in.”

Read more …

5 Comments to “Inside the New York Underground”

  1. Pauly

    Great story? Pathetically mediocre at best

  2. DanM

    Dude … non-poker media. And I haven’t read anything from you in Salon about the New York underground.

  3. Short-Stacked Shamus

    Yea, I was kind of surprised by how generic the piece turned out to be. Could’ve been about a hand played just about anywhere in the world, actually. (Not to mention the hand could’ve been explained better, too — even taking into consideration the non-pokery context.)

  4. F-Train

    Not only was the story kinda meh, but I feel like stories about the NYC underground rooms have been done to death at this point. Three of four years ago this story would have been more noteworthy.

  5. DanM

    OK, a-holes, I admit I didn’t read it all the way through. (Sorry readers, I’ll do better next time.)

    But still … interesting to me that they would run it now. Go poker?