On June 1st, I won a seat at the World Series of Poker Championship playing poker online for $85. The tournament starts July 3rd in Vegas, my $10,000 buy-in and travel expenses are paid.
On June 23rd, I became Pokerface. Shortly after lunchtime, my wife came home and only half my face could smile. It had only happened moments before she arrived and I was a bit shocky from the realization that something was dreadfully wrong. She immediately drove me to the hospital. I thought I was having a stroke - basically writing my epitaph in the car. I was clinging to the fact that both my arms and legs were still working normal. I told my wife how to get the money for the poker seat and take me out of the tournament if she had to. I worked at the hospital for a long time in my past and I've seen some of the worst things that can go wrong with your health. I was scared I wasn't coming back.
I cleared my work schedule as quickly as I could and as best as I could. We arrived at Emergency and had to suffer through the wait of triage. My facial paralysis was getting worse, coming on in with waves of pain in my jaw and ear. I'd been feeling pains since Thursday, booked a doctor's appointment on Friday, waited as it got worse until Monday, and ended up with paralysis an hour and a half before I was booked to see my doctor. About 20 minutes later I saw the triage nurse, or rather the triage nurse saw me and did some quick tests. The first thing he told me - it probably wasn't a stroke. He thought it was Bell's Palsy. This was great for getting my blood pressure down. But then we had to wait, and wait, and wait. My wife and I knew a few things about Bell's Palsy but not much. But after over three hours waiting, it was confirmed.
Life can turn on a dime. It's precious and you must nourish each moment to its fullest. Today, I'm back at work looking at sweet homes. I really do love realty and really hated being in the hospital, everytime I go back it is confirmed. I made a decision to decrease the amount of time I spent feeling bad and increase the amount of time feeling good. It helps me get through this so called life.
So now I've really got a Pokerface. This should be interesting. At the moment I find it quite embarassing. Although I'm talking okay, to me it feels like a huge speech impediment. The smile is weird, kissing is way off, straws are out of the question. But it's what I've got to work with. It can only be fate. It must be to help me win this tournament. I'll have some fun with it. Let's see if I can freak out some young punks at the tables or throw them off their game with an evil grin. Try to tap into the sinister side and keep them scared while I take their money away. Got to look at the brighter side.
I am really looking forward to this tournament. I love watching the hold 'em tournaments on TV and I look forward to seeing the poker stars that will be there. This is a world championship game and I'm going for it, Pokerface and all. Wish me luck.