Two Reunions + Two Thanksgivings

A Guest Post, by Carl Frommer

Reunion No.1:  I recently returned from a reunion with my old Army unit, the 2-505 Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.  Proud paratroopers we were and will forever remain, Fort Bragg welcomed us home 33 years after our now mostly forgotten deployment to the Caribbean island nation of Grenada; a mission code named Operation Urgent Fury.  

It was October of 1983, I was a young Infantry Sergeant turned 21 years of age just a few weeks into our deployment.  Grenada was the first and last military operation since WWII that U.S. soldiers were overwhelmingly welcomed by all but an insignificant few of its beautiful citizens as liberators from an unpopular murderous communist coup that overthrew their democratically elected government with the help of Cuban and Russian advisers. Hundreds of American citizens who attended a popular medical school on the island were also at peril.

Good times at our reunion bound by our brotherhood forged by all that we had experienced together.  I have no sufficient words to convey what it all meant to us to reunite.  It was a beautiful larger than life event. It was a deeply meaningful thing to us all.  From laughs to tears we shared, it was all good, both healing and up lifting.  It was unequivocally a necessary pilgrimage for this old soldier to make.   Our former Battalion Commander, Col. Keith M. Nightingale,  wrote in an essay about the bond of brotherhood between soldiers.  He wrote, “Love is not too strong a word.”   Not too strong a word by a long-shot, I say.  It is a sort of love distinctly its own as is the nature of love between lovers, family, and friends.

Thanksgiving One and Two:  One of my fondest memories as a soldier was Thanksgiving Day, Grenada, November 1983. Our unit was spread throughout the small Caribbean island nation.  The Grenadians wanted to express their own thanks by hosting individual Thanksgiving dinners to the troops dispatched throughout the island.  It was a beautiful thing to experience; the grace and expressions of gratitude from so many of its grateful citizens having their democracy and freedom restored.  The Grenadians were intrigued and loved the notion of this most American of tradition when we gather for a traditional meal and give thanks for all our blessings.  So grateful the people were and so lovely they found our tradition of Thanksgiving; the following year the Grenadians declared October 25th as Grenada’s own Thanksgiving Day marking the anniversary their freedom and democracy was restored.   It is a national holiday that stands to this day.  A humbling honor to any America that might take a moment to ponder it.

Reunion No. 2:  It was something special that my Army reunion to NC afforded me the opportunity to reunite with my dear friends Felicia and Glenn.   It had been way too long (perhaps 10 years or so) and it was ever sweet for the soul to reconnect with two very special people I so much love and admire.  My heart and soul was abundantly filled with the bonds of love and camaraderie that is the foundation of our enduring special friendship.  It was as if no time had passed from minute one.

It was a special thing my lovely wife Traci finally got to meet Felicia and Glenn. Traci quickly grew fond of both Felicia and Glenn and formed a genuine bond of friendship in the two days we connected; once just before and then just after my Army reunion.  We actually cancelled other plans to make time for that second day together and I’m so very glad we did.  

It was tremendously up lifting.   I have not shared this with Felicia until now, but in many way our friendship is akin to my soldier’s bonds of brotherhood.  There are reasons this is so, perhaps to be told another time.   

My reunion with Felicia and Glenn caused me to become more aware how particularly rare and special our enduring friendship is.  Mutually nurturing and unconditional.  

Be it built on bonds of brotherhood or friendship it is ever so sweet to be with people you love; to both receive and to see your love received with grace and gratitude.  

A gorgeous week it was for the heart and soul of this lucky fellow.  


Carl Frommer


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On Vegas and Weekend Plans

In Vegas I was so sick! I tried to play through the cold, but was having a tough time, coughing and blowing my nose day after day. The cold was almost over, everything was coming up.

I tried to play through it, although it was tough. Luckily I was at the tail end, but still played badly for the most part.

In the main event I was dealt AA during the third level and raised. One caller. The flop was QTx rainbow. I bet the pot and he called. The turn brought another ten and diamond. I sensed weakness. He checked again, I bet the pot, putting me all-in. He reluctantly called. He turned over AJ for a gutshot and runner diamond draw, got there on the river and IGHN. I was 77% on the flop, so I’ll take those odds.

After saying goodbye to Van Alstyne, Glenn and I went to play cash games. Thank God for low limit O8.

We also played some at the Aria, which spreads PLO. The Aria is a great card room and imo, happy tourists are always better than grumpy locals.

I’m getting ready to play again. Unfortunately I have had to make my posts more ambiguous about my location for now. I also plan to talk with the guy from Maryland Live again. He is about 6’5″ and strong looking.

God bless, see you soon.

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Florida PLO

Florida poker is everything I heard claimed!

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Florida PLO

Florida poker is everything I heard claimed!

I started out playing 6/12 FK and later switched to 5/5 PLO. The games here are absolutely phenomenal and the players are extremely friendly.

I will update the rest of the Vegas trip when I get some time.


Thank you to the great VanAlstyne for dinner and the sweat! It was so good seeing you again.


My cold is almost gone again. Wow, what a relapse. I felt really horrible in Vegas, played even worse! Fortunately, I won almost all of my cash game sessions, sticking to low limit rote O8 exclusively, except for a couple of small PLO sessions. It’s such a gimme that I can play while ill.

Glenn was down for the trip, but I kept us almost even.

When I first sat in the poker room tonight, one of the chip runners came to me and said that someone wanted to talk to me. He was someone I knew from Maryland Live who just wanted to formally meet. It’s so nice to see a familiar, friendly face. He is also a PLO player.

Until next time, signing off!

(Due to recent direct threats, I am editing my past posts as a safety measure)

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WSOP Lammer League

A WSOP lammer is nothing more than a seat in a WSOP event. It is not a person or a slur.


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We’re getting ready to fly out of Vegas tonight.

Sorry for the lack of updates. My cold relapsed and the past couple of days been hell.

More on this later when I get a chance to catch up on my posts.

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Beyond the Mask

Glenn and I are having a great time in Vegas. The Orleans is much improved since the last time I was here!

On the first afternoon (Saturday) I accidentally entered one of the events. I had no plans to play it, but John stood in line and held a place for me for so long while I got my card that I felt like it would be rude to decline. At that point, other than about a one hour nap, I’d been up for 31 hours straight. I figured I’d be dead money, and I was.

On the plus side, the guy to my left was a Brit who was from Manchester and played extremely well. He and I talked the entire time and in the end he won the whole thing. Woohoo, congrats Mark. I’ll do a complete write-up with pics when I get back home to NC.

I tried to get some sleep after I busted out, but my cold relapsed and had also turned into laryngitis, which means I can’t speak. And that is where hundreds of people got so lucky! Non-stop jabber Felicia was mostly silent Felicia.

The tag team event was very fun. I did so well in the beginning. I would chip up quite a bit, then we would switch and John was holding steady or down. So I was able to chip up John again, only to switch and see he’d lost all of my gains and sometimes even more! Poor John was running bad, and since he’s much more of a loose player than me, that meant the dents in our chips were bigger. Bah, here I wanted a partner who would provide a counter-point, but what I didn’t think about was that our stacks would also swing wildly and if he was running bad, well that meant both of us were running bad because I’m typically not ever going to be the chip lead, being such a rock.

So we lingered around a while, but then the blinds went nuts and John was down to two big blinds when we switched. I shoved with AQs only to run into kings and I was out. I had just doubled him up on the other table, so at least he had five big blinds. He ended up shoving with sixes which was called by JTo and died by trip jacks.

I found a last minute partner for Glenn. Scott is one of the only players I’ve ever met in the free league who actually looks at his opponents, not the board when he is playing. I noticed that right away, since I am used to the amateur league being full of, well, amateurs. That is the point. Scott at least tries to play well. So I told Glenn that they should partner and that turned out to be a great pairing. They both played very well and everyone knows that Glenn is a wonderful player. They had a great sense of each other and knew how to play out hands—mid hand at that, when they were tagged. They ALWAYS made the right call, even when all of the chips were on the line, when involved in a big hand and forced to switch. I have never seen such a great dynamic as the way those two worked together. I personally witnessed three mid-hand switches when every one of their chips were on the line and in all cases they did the right thing.

In the end, although Glenn and Scott were the short stacks, all remaining participants agree to an even chop. The blinds were so high than no one had any chips. Even the chip leads were sitting on something like three big blinds (I’m not sure about this one, because it was in the middle of the night and I was already in bed, having stayed up for 40 hours straight).

Carl told me I made a grave error in judgment going for the counter-point perspective rather than someone who plays more like me and not partnering with Glenn. I don’t know, he could be right, but hindsight is 20/20. Had John built a huge stack like he is wont, then we might have had two giant leads, which I would be able to hold steady during the switches, while he greatly chipped up being the bully and been able to win the whole thing. So I don’t regret my decision. John is a great player.

During the TOC event, I had a great first table. I was able to dominate the whole thing and bought a lot of pots. Sometimes the dynamics in the free league are such that I am the only experienced player and this was it. Unfortunately, we broke early and at my next two tables I never really got anything going on, while the blinds went wild. I made a couple of mistakes which I will try to address in a later post and wanted to slap myself silly.

Glenn never really had a stack and went out when his AJs met AQo. I went out not long after (I had already blown the whole thing for myself with those two mistakes). Finally I had only 3 bb’s. An EP player raised with A4s, I defended all-in with K6s. Although I flopped a four-flush, he flopped two pair,  turned a boat and IGHN.

I wish I could speak. My tables have been serious and morose. I tend to be the table cheerleader when this happens and get everyone talking/loose/happy. With no voice that means I can’t fulfill that role. Bah.

We played a lot of cash games. Orleans is known for their LO8, so I have been playing that in my spare time. The games are typically good, although natch there are a ton of grumpy O8 local nits. One thing I did NOT miss about The Orleans. What I did miss was the $3 rake! Oh, how good we used to have it. The games are easy to beat and the rake is outstanding.

Last night there was a costume party. We were lucky enough to run into two lovely locals from Burlington and sat next to them and John who easily won the costume contest with his BDSM outfit (love it, but then I love kink and pain, woot).

I didn’t wear a costume, but did buy one of those little masks they sell at The Orleans, just to be fun.



Until the next report, take care and God bless.

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