A Not So Hard Days Night with the Beatles

The Beatles have had a sort of weird place in mind when it comes to covering them. Early stuff like "You Can’t Do That" (etc.) is pretty straight forward, and the hard part of it comes in not from the complexity, but rather from the deceptively-simple sounding, but not at all straight forward (Think "Close Your Eyes"), chords they worked into those tunes.

Their later stuff sounds so damned good — even after all these years — that I’ve had some kind of "I surely can’t play that because it must be hard" roadblock, even though much of it is even more straight forward than some of their early tunes.

Analyzing a Poker Hand

I’ve been really focusing on the mental and player side of poker lately, and am really enjoying doing so. On Friday, I made a great read on a player and then played that read accordingly, and I have to tell you it felt great.

The hand:

I’m in the BB with the stellar holding of 9d5c.

Three people limp, the SB calls, and I check.

The flop is Ah 5s 2d

I check, two others check, and the hijack bets. The SB folds, and I think about the hand.

My Biggest Leak

I’ll be the first to jump up and admit that I am a far, far better poker player today than I was a few years ago, but my biggest leak has simply got to be my temper (second biggest leak is calling when I know I’m beaten, and a distant third is not playing back against a pre-flop raiser with a marginal holding when I know I am ahead).

I’ve been working on it, to be sure, and I’ve certainly improved this aspect of my game. For instance, I’ve weaned myself off of (almost all) smartass comments when someone pulls a suckout, but just this past week I had two situations where I allowed myself to get tense at the poker table.

The Beatles’ Anthology Rocks my World

The Beatles’ Anthology — how in the hell did I miss this collection? Dave Bonora played 30-40 tracks from this incredible collection during our drive to Vegas last week, and man-oh-man is it incredible.

When it was released, I had thought it was nothing more than yet-another-greatest-hits collection, but as most likely everyone else on the planet knows, it’s a collection of outtakes, alternate versions, live tracks, and even a dozen or so unreleased songs.

This is, of course, the kind of thing I enjoy more than just about anything else from the bands I love, but to hear this stuff from The Beatles is just incredible. "Because" without instrumentation (I had heard that long ago on a radio special), the grooviest and most awesome version of "Helter Skelter" (a 5 minute sample from what was a 12 minute jam on the song — I WANT THE FULL 12 MINUTES!), an acoustic version of "While My Guitar gently weeps" that is George alone, a wonderfully slow version of "She Came in Through the Bathroom Window," and a host of other amazing tunes.

OH MY GOD, WILL YOU SHUT UP?!?!

Darla and I saw Jet Li’s Fearless in the theatre a few days ago. Great flick, if you’re into epic martial arts movies — and I am — but it was what occurred in the seats that I thought I’d write about.

First of all, there were only about 20 people in the audience, yet four of them — a full 20% of those present — felt it was OK to talk during a movie. The two folks behind us were clearly discussing the movie (I could be wrong, as my Chinese isn’t so hot, but the rhythm and flow of their talk suggested as much), while the two numbnuts a few seats away and a row down to our right were just chatting away.

The Latest Bill O’Reilly & Fox News Lie

The most recent lie from the crazy whack job known as Bill O’Reilly and his employer, Fox News, is almost too much to believe. During a recent O’Reilly Factor broadcast, these un-American pigs labeled Republican congressman Mark Foley a Democrat during a report about Mr. Foley exchanging sexually suggestive IMs with a 16 year old male former page. Mr. Foley is, of course, a Republican, the party for whom Fox News and O’Reilly work so hard to spread propaganda.

Fortunately, John Amato at CrooksAndLiars.com got a screen shot — you know, for posterity. My good friend Greg Snyder suggested we all help spread it far and wide for people to seem, and I think that’s a fine idea. Accordingly: