Wednesday, December 30, 2009


I've had a few people ask me for some tips on throwing a good new years eve party; so I figured I'd blog about it along with my current play list (I tweak it several times a day):
  • Music is huge. End of the year top ten lists are all over the music blog world and a great source for hidden gems. Be creative and use DJ fundamentals. I like to start off low key and crescendo around 11:45-1:30.
  • Typically the more the merrier. I like to give a personal email or phone call to several fringe guests I would especially like to come.
  • Have plenty of paper towels handy.
  • It's always nice to have some fun games or decorations that are original and creative. Surprise and delight people.
  • Good liquor, champagne and high gravity Belgian beers are well worth the money.
  • Complicated mixed drinks tend to take a bit too much time to serve and are not worth it.
  • Midnight can sneak up on you if the party is bumping. Make sure you turn on the TV or something to get a countdown going. A cellphone reminder a few minutes beforehand can help avoid sleeping the countdown (it can take longer than you think to hand out champagne and something to make noise with to most people).
Here is a majority of what I have in store musically:

The Beatles - I Saw Her Standing There
The Temptations vs. Ludacris - Move Girl
Shwayze - Livin' It Up
AC-DC - It's a Long Way to the Top
Lil Wayne - Shooter
Calvin Harris - Merry Making at My Place
LCD Soundsystem - Bye Bye Bayou
Blondie - Atomic
Tor/Sufjan Stevens - Dumb I Sound
Musical Youth - Pass the Dutchie
Queen - Killer Queen
Kid Cudi - Make Her Say
Spoon - Written in Reverse
Lil Wayne - Let the Beat Build
Metric - Help I'm Alive (Twelves Remix)
Jay-Z - Run This Town
Drake - Forever (Travis Barker Remix)
The Hood Internet Vol. 4 Tracks 2-7
Rye Rye - Bang
Black Eyed Peas - I Gotta Feeling (Remix)
THI V4 Tracks 11-12
La Roux - I'm Not Your Toy (datA Remix)
Dr. Dre - Drop That Dream (POMATIC Remix)
Franz Ferdinand - What She Came For (Drums of Death Remix)
Travis Porter - All the Way Turnt Up
Outkast - So Fresh So Clean (Personally Sped Up Tempo a Tad)
Michael Jackson - Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'
Rhianna - Don't Stop the Music (LAZRtag Remix)
Dorrough - Ice Cream Paint Job (Personally Sped Up)
LMFAO - La La La
Waka Flocka Flame - O Let's Do It
B.I.G. - Party and Bullshit (In the USA Remix)
Kid Cudi - Pursuit of Happiness (Steve Aoki Remix)
Jay-Z - Empire State of Mind
Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Heads Will Roll (A-Trak Remix)
Mystikal - Danger (Sped Up Some)
Sugar Hill Gang - Apache
Outkast - Hey Ya!
MGMT - Electric Touch
THI4 Tracks 20,23-27
Ke$ha - Tik Tok (Skeet Skeet Remix)
Rick James - Give It to Me Baby
Ludacris - What's Your Fantasy
T.I. - Whatever You Like (DiscoTech Remix)
Wale - Chillin (Meterhead Remix)
White Lies - Farewell to the Fairground (Yuksek Remix)
Queen - I Want to Break Free

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

You Just Don't Understand

I felt compelled to share some of the most insightful pages from the book I am reading:

Oprah Winfrey has said, "My biggest flaw is my inability to confront people. After all the shows I've done, the books I've read, the psychologists I've talked to, I still allow myself to get ripped off to the nth degree. It takes me days and days of procrastination and agonizing before i can work up the nerve to say anything, Sometimes I think I'd rather just run out and get hit by a truck than confront someone who is ripping me off."

One man described to me what his former wife called the I-like-chicken-backs phenomenon. When his family ate a chicken for dinner, someone had to eat the back, and in his family it was always his wife, who assured the others, "I like chicken backs." But, as this man commented to me, nobody liked chicken backs. She had convinced herself that she liked chicken backs and broken egg yolks and burned toast- to be accommodating. But years of accommodating built up to mounting frustration that they both believed had contributed to their eventual divorce.

For many women, openly opposing the will of others- or what they perceive to be others' will- is unthinkable. Ironically, it may be easier for some to think of leaving. This was the case of a woman I will call Dora, who did not realize, until it was too late, that opposing her husband's will would not bring the house down. But the cumulative frustration of never getting her way did.

A source of frustration for Dora was a series of used automobiles. It was she who drove to work, and she who took the car to the garage, but her husband, Hank, who chose the cars they would buy. Hank always went for cars that were cheap, interesting, and continually in need of repair. After Dora was nearly killed by a run-down Tenault with unfixable brakes, they were in the market for yet another used car.

Hank fixed his sights on a fifteen-year-old Alfa Romeo that a mechanic he knew was getting ready to sell. Dora wanted to take advantage of the chance to buy a late model VW from a friend who was leaving the country. Determined to reach a decision by consensus, she tried every verbal resource she could think of to convince Hank that it made sense to buy the boring but dependable VW rather than the dashing old Alfa Romeo, but he would not be convinced.

If this had happened at any previous time, Dora would have acceded to her husband's wishes and cursed him in her heart each time she drove the Alfa Romeo to work- or to the garage for repair. But this incident occurred when their marriage was already on the rocks. With so little to lose, she bough the VW from her friend and steeled herself for the torrent of anger she was sure she'd incur. To her amazement, Hank never spoke a word of remonstrance. When she told him what she had expected, he told her she had been foolish: She should have just done what she wanted from the start if she felt that strongly about it. He couldn't understand why she felt she had to have his blessing to do what she was certain was right.

No matter how dissatisfied people are with the results they are getting, they rarely question their way of trying to get results. When what we are doing is not working, we do not try doing something totally different. Instead, we try harder by doing more of what seems self-evidently the right way to proceed. But when styles differ, more of the same is usually met with more of the same from the other party as well. As a result, far from solving the problem, our efforts only make things worse.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

A big break up can have some peculiar affects on a man. I now have this strong association between things that led to my loss and a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. I feel a bit like Alex in A Clockwork Orange. The idea of sleeping in late makes me feel gross. Causing mischief with my neighbors for the sake of confrontation seems asinine. Even little things like typing too quickly and spelling words wrong while chatting makes me queasy. And I quote Alex:

I woke up. The pain and sickness all over me like an animal.
Then I realised what it was. The music coming up from the floor
was our old friend, Ludwig van and the dreaded 9th Symphony.
Suddenly I viddied what I had to do, and what I had wanted
to do รณ and that was to do myself in, to snuff it, to blast off
forever out of this wicked cruel world.

Such a cathartic process does feel like a rebirth at times. It's almost a privilege. It take a special person to inspire you to better yourself whilst in their company, but it takes a whole higher level of character for that person to inspire you with their absence.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

I Spent a G on These Frames, but My Vision Is Priceless

First two noble truths of Buddhism:
  1. Existence is suffering
  2. Suffering originates from desire

Friday, December 25, 2009


A portrait my eight year old cousin did for me.

Note to Relatives

Just because I play poker for a living doesn't mean I want a ton of scratch off lottery tickets for Christmas.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


I am generally an extremely passive person. My past two previous relationships sort of just fell into my lap with little work. They both pretty much fell apart from a lack of effort on my part. I hardly did any homework in school. Poker came rather naturally and I now have to do little work to get more money than I need. Athleticism comes with little struggle. In high school when it came time to apply for colleges I did only one application (most of my peers doing at least 3-7) and got in to my first choice of school with no back up plan [funny story is when the girl I was dating at the time went to our guidance consular in a rush to get off a few applications he suggested that she be more proactive like me [her bf] to which she laughed in his face and to me later]. This is the first time in my life I really feel like I need to work hard to become a better person and I am setting some serious goals to get it done:
  1. Alarm set to get me up everyday at 9:59AM.
  2. At least 30 minutes a day reading about communication skills and emotional growth.
  3. Keeping current connections with friends and family strong and encouraging new ones.
  4. At least 30 minutes a day of cardio or anaerobic exercise.
  5. Keep my condo clean.
Once I set goals they almost always are accomplished. It's funny how buying things can really make you feel better as superficial and lame as that sounds. I got some rocking campers and a new years eve outfit in soho and I feel like a new man at times.

Monday, December 21, 2009


History begins to repeat itself. I did it for a lot longer last time, but again I am finding myself using the mental crutch that I will someday get back with my ex-girlfriend to ease the pain. It is hard to differentiate between wanting to get back together because you are madly in love and want to spend the rest of your life with this person; between wanting to get back together because it would be the quickest and easiest way to stop the pain [I suspect more of the latter]. Today was a big band-aid rip. She took all her belongings out of my apartment and we agreed to cease all contact. It is officially time to move on. I am now home for the holidays after some extended travels to Chiacgo, Veags and New York. After Christmas and New Years Eve and the Bahamas (PCA) I will be looking into experimenting with some online dating. I have given up almost all hope of meeting new people in person. I have yet to sleep past 9:59AM these past two weeks. Sometimes it is hard to distinguish the difference between the pain of lost love and the pain of acid reflux. I think it was a bit of both this evening.

Weekend in NYC

Little issues can cause big problems. It's funny how in baseball even two of the most refined and talented outfielders can let a routine fly ball drop in between them on rare occasion. All it takes is a hand gesture or an "I got it" and there is no problem. The same seems to ring true for serious relationships. Many times a problem will come along that two people can solve with ease as long as there is a simple open dialog. Back in high school I vividly remember one day after practice when my football coach approached me in private and said how he got the feeling that I didn't let anyone get close to me and that I didn't talk much. At the time I just thought whatever, you are a dumb old redneck, why would I want to talk/open up with you? But his words seem to ring true a decade later. Lately I've been having frequent conversations with close friends and family about the break up and life. In nearly each talk I have brought up how I don't let too many people get close to me. Nearly every time I say this I get an immediate and emphatic affirmation. Honestly this caught me off guard a bit. I don't feel like I hold much back. If the people closest to me in my life feel like I have a wall up, I can't imagine what those who barely know me think.

Fun fact of the day: In a study called American Couples, it was found that lesbians have sex less often than gay men and heterosexual couples. The sociologists believe this to be true because among lesbians they found neither feels comfortable taking the role of initiator, because neither wants to be perceived as making demands.

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Things I Have Been Thinking

  • Long distance relationships are nearly impossible.
  • Yes I make enough money playing poker to get by... do non gamblers not see how this is a rude question to ask someone you just met?
  • New Years Eve is definitely my favorite holiday and planing/hosting a party is quite the pleasurable experience. This recent break up will damper both my attendance and guy:girl ratio; a potential sausage fest is one of my greatest fears.
  • There is a lot of useful information in books and on the internet.
  • It seems to take around 15% (or more) of the time you were in a serious relationship to grieve afterwards before you can healthily connect on an emotional level with a different woman.
  • Comments are the lifeblood of the blogging industry.
  • Meeting new people after college whist working at home is daunting.
  • Sometimes when I am at my lowest emotional states and don't feel like going on anymore its the far chance of catching that runner runner that I would someday get back together with my ex that keeps me going.

Wise Words from Cartman

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Next Day

You get a few drinks in me and I will say the silliest things on this blog. A good nights sleep did me well. I have my alarm clock permanently set to 9:59am and don't plan on sleeping a wink past ten AM for at least the next 6 months. It's painful at times, but after much rumination I believe it is the optimal play. Despite going to sleep last night at nearly 5am I somehow found myself wide awake at 8:45am this morning. One of my best friends just bought a house less than 1.5 miles away from me and I got the pleasure of taking the tour this morning. My future is relatively up in the air. Such uncertainty is slowly progressing from fear to excitement. Some of the best advice I've gotten about poker is to adapt your game to your personality. If you are generally a conservative person, a tighter game will come more naturally. If you are a bit wild and adventurous, you probably will see more success playing looser poker. I presume the same to also be true of other aspects of life. I need to recognize my natural talents and play on my strengths. I respond well to setting goals and if something can be turned into a competition I will find a way to win. I genuinely believe that at my core I am a good person. There's an old saying my father oft quotes that goes, ""Show me your friends and I'll tell you who you are." I have had the privilege to be surrounded by a plethora of top notch people in my life and can only expect this trend to continue.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Figured I would write a mix that summed up the emotions I've been feeling this past week:

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Thursday, December 10, 2009

4 Things I Could Have Done to Have Cultivated a Healthier Relationship

1. Listen for hints: I am a very blunt and honest person. When someone asks how I feel or what I want I almost never beat around the bush. This isn't to say that way is good or bad, but just that I seem to expect others to reciprocate similarly. Consequently, when people make slight suggestions or choose more delicate wording I often overlook important details. It is essential that I can learn to step outside myself and take strong note when significant issues are brought up; if only by implication or briefly touching on them.

2. Change my schedule: At the time it seemed trivial, but in retrospect I truly believe having askew sleeping patterns puts tremendous strain on the relationship. It really wouldn't have taken all that much effort and the benefits would have greatly outweighed the costs. I have very strong will power and not exercising it here was a mistake I hope not to repeat.

3. Take an interest: If you really care about someone, inquiring about their hobbies, activities, jobs, family and leisure time should following naturally on a daily basis. It seems like on the deepest level the biggest thing people want is just to have someone who listens and understands what it is they think they are saying. If you don't let people tell you who they are, you'll never learn.

4. Develop communication skills: This is without a doubt the biggest thing. If I learn nothing else from this whole experience, I'd be content if I just sharpened my ability to communicate. I recently picked up a book (You Just Don't Understand by DR. Deborah Tannen) by suggestion of my mother and only 70 pages in I feel it has challenged and enlightened my inter gender linguistic skills to the bone. It is widely known that most relationship problems can be resolved by means of healthy communication. It's about time I play a little less Tetris and start sorting out my real life.

Wise Words from Churchill

If you're going through hell, keep going.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

DJ Gambel^3

Stuck alone in a cold and snowy Chicago.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Stuck on Repeat

I watch an episode of Simpsons nearly every night before I got to bed. I have a hard time turning off my mind and this seems to help. Lately I've been watching them in French to help learn the language. It helps. The other day the folder containing all the episodes just disappeared. I don't remember deleting it or moving it and all searches came up empty. It just seemed to leave without any notice. Elizabeth and I broke up this evening. We dated for about twenty one months. On paper the relationship seemed to be a reasonable match, but if the Acura TL has taught us anything it's that intangibles are what keep the wheels turning. If something big was missing it won't show up in the record books. I will try and make an extra effort to avoid too much alcohol and gambling in the trying coming times.

DJ Gambel Take Two

My second mix tape. I am getting better... I think:

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Music by DJ Gambel

I am learning how to mix music a bit and this is my first ever mashup. Be kind; it's rough and I am still figuring out the basics.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

My First Hand against Durrrr

Full Tilt Poker Game #16441766787: Table Vista (6 max, deep) - $25/$50 - Pot Limit Omaha
Seat 2: bemguestbud ($6,185.50)
Seat 3: gamblegambel ($2,500)
Seat 4: Ollioli ($19,855)
Seat 5: durrr ($12,696)
Seat 6: Bbby_Club ($2,229)
bemygustbud posts the small blind of $25
gamblegambel posts the big blind of $50
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to gamblegambel [Js Qs 9c Td]
OlliPlli folds
durrr has 15 seconds left to act
durrr raises to $175
BobbyClub folds
bemyuestbud folds
gamblegambel has 15 seconds left to act
gamblegambel raises to $550
durrr calls $375
*** FLOP *** [Ah Ts 5d]
gamblegambel bets $1,125
drrrr has 15 seconds left to act
urrrr calls $1,125
*** TURN *** [Ah Ts 5d] [3s]
gamblegambel bets $825, and is all in
durrr has 15 seconds left to act
drrrr calls $825
gamblegambel shows [Js Qs 9c Td]
urrrr shows [Qh Kh 6c Jc]
*** RIVER *** [Ah Ts 5d 3s] [8c]
gamblegambel shows a pair of Tens
durrr shows Ace King high
gamblegambel wins the pot ($5,022) with a pair of Tens
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot $5,025 | Rake $3
Board: [Ah Ts 5d 3s 8c]
Seat 3: gamblegambel (big blind) showed [Js Qs 9c Td] and won ($5,022) with a pair of Tens
Seat 5: durrrr showed [Qh Kh 6c Jc] and lost with Ace King high