Monday, January 31, 2011

Poker Politics - Welcome to the Corporation

The poker world is divided into two distinct columns.  The production side and the performance side.  The production side of the house is reserved for employees who keep the industry well tended, the media who provide the coverage so sought after by players and the organizations keeping things moving fluidly to the best of their ability.

The performance side is reserved for any player with enough money in his or her pocket to pull up a chair.

Regardless of what circuit you're playing or in what card room, this is one big monopolizing corporation with no address or company directory. 

So far, I haven't met anyone I can't work with. (Well, with the exception of Rogers. But that's a whole other issue!) One thing I'm astounded by are the politics of poker. On both sides of the house. The more successful you become on the poker food chain the more your name gets swept up in scandal.  Throw out a name, any name, and I can find you someone who has an awful scandalous story they're just dying to share over cocktails.  Some of these stories even involve incriminating evidence, a weed eater and the types of edible toppings you'd find suitable for an ice cream sundae. I'm not kidding.

The bigger the name, the bigger the drama and scandals. Its the sort of scenarios that you'd expect on an episode of Survivor or in a fraternity house.

I was told, almost ominously by someone recently that it was just a matter of time before someone in the industry hates me too. This said after I pointed out that I have no scandal and I have no issue with any one individual. I put a great deal of thought into this, because I already have my ideal road map lined out, and I'd like to make my way without stepping on any one's toes. What a girl mentality too, to exist in a highly competitive and cutthroat world and genuinely expect to do so without getting swept up in the negative dynamics.

Another friend of mine uses the term "Poker Mafia".  This is humorous to me, because I absolutely see what he's talking about. I suppose this is to be expected when you exist in a world where the color of your card determines your worth and viability.

So if we're all to be swept up in scandal, I would like to go on record in advance... that I'd prefer mine to be the type that involves a weed eater and edible toppings.  I'm not much for backstabbing or playing favorites. I'm going to continue to form my own opinions about people in this machine based on my specific interactions. Don't get me wrong, I love hearing the stories just as much as the next person.. but I've also seen how sky lining yourself in this industry can have an impact that is virtually irreversible.

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