Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Poster Child for the PPA

Lots of organizations have poster children.  So-called because their image adorns the posters for these organizations, the kids are usually sad, oppressed, pathetic victims of whatever disease or malady the organization is trying to stamp out.  And they are terribly effective.

The Poker Players Alliance does not have a poster child.  John Pappas is a handsome man, and Rich Muny equally dashing.  Neither are sad nor pathetic.  And I’m not certain that the PPA needs such an icon.  But if they do, I know the perfect poster child for the sad and oppressed victims of “no-online-poker-itus.”


I'm not sure if you’ve noticed, but there seems to be a rash of online surveys asking participants; “Where would you rather play poker - Live, Online, or Both?”  A couple of them ask for more than just a vote, giving a box for you to explain why.

So I did.

And the responses (no one believed me) lead me to believe that there is no one more sad and oppressed than I.

I wrote that I don’t have much of a choice in the matter, as where I live makes Live Poker a non-issue.  Online is pretty much the only choice, as no matter which direction I go, it’s a haul to find a live game.

Go south, and the closest casino is in Lincoln City, OR, a 2.5 hour drive (that’s one-way).  It is the only place I ever played live - once.  I happened to be there for another event, and we stayed overnight and I indulged myself into entering a $25 NLHE tournament.  Finished third, BTW.

Go north, and the closest casino now is in Tokeland, WA…and I don’t even know if they have poker (and it’s still a two-hour drive).  Long Beach, WA is only an hour away, but Six-Card Charlie’s closed five or six years ago. It’s a thrift store now.

Go east, and it’s Portland and its card rooms, a 90 minute drive in summer.  But I can’t go in summer (I work in tourism, seven days a week).  So that leaves the off-season, and I have to take US 26 over the mountains, so if it snows…forget it.  And if I played for any time at all, I’d be coming home in the dark.  Over the mountain.  In winter.  Uphill both ways.  At my age, that’s as smart as betting into the nuts.

Go west, and I get wet, as I live about 500 feet from the Pacific.  Hey, the closest casinos are in Macau!  Seriously!

So that’s why making online poker a reality is a big deal to me.  I explained why I joined the PPA in an earlier post, but this is the benefit part of why I joined.  I really want to play poker online.  For real.  For money.  Yeah, I play online now, but play money ain’t the same.  And you know it.

I can see it now:

“This is Mikey, one of millions of unfortunate poker players who cannot access real online poker.  Deprived of the ability of play poker for real money, Mikey and his ilk roam the Internet playing meaningless games of Zynga poker, and diving farther in their cups for a whack at Farmville, Deal-or-no-Deal Slots, and Angry Birds.  Once in a while Mikey will click his old PokerStars icon (replaced a few years ago with the .net version for U.S. players only) and he’ll try to recapture the vicarious thrill of what it meant to play poker for real.  But then, the pop-up screen will ask him if he wants to buy more play-money chips, and his dreams will be smashed again.  Don’t let Mikey go to bed hungry for victory again.  Join the PPA to help restore online poker to its rightful place at Mikey’s computer and laptops of millions of wanting Americans.  It’s the right thing to do.”

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