Monday, September 08, 2008

Running of the Bull

By Pauly
Atlantic City, NJ

Were to begin? I don't have much time. Shit, I'm always pressed for time. As my colleague Lacey said, "I dunno how you do it?"

Even with a couple of extra hours a day as an insomniac, I'm still juggling eighty things at once. Some days, I'm being pulled and tugged in so many directions at once that my gut reaction is to retreat and withdraw and do absolutely nothing.

Alas, I have too many responsibilities. My goal is to slowly shed all of those over the next couple of months as I prepare for a new project in 2009. Well, two new projects. One if obviously 2009 Phish Tour whenever that gets announced. The other project is sorta simple... write. A shitload. For myself.

I get grumpy when I have a burning desire to create but do not have the time to allow that process to unfold. It is a timing issue. Inspiration is fickle. You have to grasp a hold of it whenever you can. Over the last couple of years, that always seemed to strike in places were I was unable to follow through on those thoughts and impulses... usually in the middle of assignments for other people. That's the struggle within... I desperately want to do my own thing but I'm trapped writing for others. I try to remind myself that I'm doing those gigs for a reason... money. The more money I can accumulate right now... will allow me more freedom to write in the future. I understand that formula and gameplan in the bigger picture. However, at the time, when I'm in the middle of the shit, I have bouts of existential paranoia... and the hallways of my mind are bombarded with the statement, "Wait, what the fuck am I doing here?"

Anyway... back on course. Gotta suck it up for about two more months then I can go off and frolic and be creative and travel and enjoy the holidays (without the stress of working for others) and basically do my own thing for the rest of the year which includes strengthening my existing personal projects.

Derek arrived at the Borgata late on Thursday night. That kinda put me in better head space. I haven't had much time with my brother this year, so I was happy that he took Friday off and braved the Atlantic City buses to hang out.

On Friday morning, we were ready to head to breakfast when we got a text from the Rooster. He woke up in NYC super early and grabbed a bus down to AC. He was at the Borgata and joined us for breakfast. I had a couple of comps and treated them to some greasy food. Derek piled tons of food onto his plate and we kinda closed out the breakfast buffet.

That's when I got word that AlCantHang was en route to AC from his neck of the woods outside of Philly. Wow... three friends came to visit me. Just at the right time because I was losing my mind. Thanks guys, I needed that.

I went off to work. The Rooster went to the poker room to play cash games. Derek and AlCantHang headed to the B Bar.

I got an early dinner break and discovered that Derek and AlCantHang had not moved from the bar. When I walked inside, Al looked perfectly normal. Derek? Not so much. He was shitfaced. Wasted. Three sheets to the wind. Derek said that he drank 8 double shots of Southern Comfort. Al thought that number was too low. Sweet Jesus. That's at least 16-20 shots.

I applaud Derek for being brave enough to try to go shot for shot with AlCantHang. But that was one bull I don't think anyone can run with. I've seen dozens of people try and fail. At least Derek was still standing up... barely. We headed off to dinner at the Metropolitan Grill and Derek was visibly intoxicated. After dinner I headed back to work for four more hours. Derek hung out with Friedman for a bit before he went up to my room to pass out for a couple of hours.

Al and the Rooster left. Derek stuck around for a bit on Saturday when he realized that a storm was coming. He quickly hopped on a bus and headed back to NYC. He missed the bulk of the storm that hit AC on Saturday afternoon. We could hear the wind and rain from the Events Center. There were a few odd leaks here or there. On a break, I went up to Friedman's room only to discover that there was some hail in the mix of rain. Kinda scary.

Somehow, among the mayhem, I managed to finish off the latest issue of Truckin' and write an article for a client.

On a harmonious musical note, I scored pre-sale tickets to two shows... Trey Anastasio in Providence (going with Senor) and Medeski Martin & Wood in Los Angeles (going with Nicky).

I also won $300 playing in an online poker tournament on Saturday afternoon. I had a shot at $600, but came in second place. Unfortunately, I lost most of that playing cash games late on Saturday night.

I have been swamped with projects. I'm super happy that the NFL season finally kicked off. This week was brutal. I had the Lamont Jordan Fantasy Football Draft with Senor and yes, we took Tony Romo as our QB. I hate the Cowboys and they are always on every fuckin' week. So we figured that we might as well go with Romo so we can sweat his games every week. I'm glad that we passed on Randy Moss, especially after Tom Brady went down in the first quarter of the Pats game with a potentially season ending injury.

I'm running two pools (Pauly's Pub for money with friends and Tao of Poker for readers of my poker blog). I also joined a pool with several old fraternity brothers that I recently reconnected with via LinkedIn. Many moons ago in college, we used to have an awesome football pool. It's nice to relive old glory days.

Over the last couple of days, I was busying promoting Sundays with Dr. Pauly, which is a contest over at Fantasy Sports Live. Between that promotion and my private poker tournament on Saturdays... I'm fully booked on the weekends!

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