Well I’m a little late in reporting this, but the entire country has gone poker crazy. There are probably 5 shows on television right now celebrating Texas Hold ’em. There’s the WPT (World Poker tour) and the WSoP(World Series of Poker) and the CPS (Celebrity Poker Showdown, my personal favorite). Poker has singlehandedly brought The Travel Channel back from the dregs of cable hell. Then there’s fictional shows revolving around poker. Where TV writers can drop little nuggets of poker knowledge in dialogue to claim integrity. People are really eating this game up. And why not? All you need is a deck of cards, some people to play with, and cold hard cash.
My issue is simple. When you play amongst friends it should be more of a social thing than an opportunity to win money. You get addicted to playing. Tuesday poker night turns into Tues/Wed/Fri (late night)/Sun poker night. People start treating you differently. Obviously some people take it more seriously than others and there will inherently be good players and bad players. Even amongst friends, the “dead money” gets treated like ATM machines. And this is a problem. Can you tell I’m talking from experience? These guys playing in the WSoP aren’t friends.
Is the poker craze about winning money or about hanging out with your buds and having a good time? Put your money on the line in Vegas. Not in your living room.