Monday, February 28, 2005

CLUBbed over the head

Last Friday, the 'SC club volleyball team lost to Biola (Bible Institute of Los Angeles) in three games. We really didn't show up to play. It was probably the ugliest match I've been a part of in a while - and I didn't enter the match until midway through the second game.

It was obvious that we didn't show up to play. There was no intensity, no fire, no enthusiasm and certainly no sense of urgency. And it was frustrating as hell.

After the match, our coach (who showed up to the match 30 minutes late) told us how he would accept responsibility for this match but the next time we play that poorly, it's our own fault. DUH!

This one shouldn't be "his." No way it should be. That match was our fault. The team's fault. But I'm pretty sure that while no one on the team is okay with losing that match, not enough people care enough to change the overall attitude.

It seems like every week this team goes up and down. One week we're on top of the world and can't be beat. We played a great tournament two weeks ago in San Diego. Then we had two not-so-hot practices followed by a 0-3 loss that quite frankly we didn't even show up for. What the hell is going on?

The loss was our first outside of a tournament, but we definitely didn't need it to serve as the wake up call I hope it is. It shouldn't have got to that point. Practices are tough, but I just get the feeling that you can't make people care about a club sport. I care. I know a lot of the guys care ... sometimes.

But because it's a club sport, it doesn't have to be a priority for everyone. In fact, I'd say that this is no one's top priority. It isn't mine. What about academics? What about a social life? What about other clubs and organizations? What about fraternities? What about family?

It just seems that there are so many other things that people could put in front of this on their priorities list. That's the big difference between club and the NCAA team: at that high level, your number one priority is your sport. That's the sad truth about it.

I'm not trying to bitch about my teammates because I'm not saying that everyone doesn't care. I'm just saying that we are on-and-off about our commitment to the team, and last week we were at an all-time low. Tuesday's practice had maybe - maybe - 10 guys there. That's embarrassing. That's not even enough to scrimmage.

I hope this week we are on again, especially after what I consider the season's low-point last Friday. If we can get our intensity back, we should be all right. The only thing that matters at this point is how much people are willing to work at it and - more importantly - work for it.

Prior to Friday's match, I had planned to miss this Tuesday's practice to do play-by-play for the NCAA team's match that night. After our dismal loss, I called up the guy in charged of broadcasting the games and told him I was gonna be busy. I was gonna be at practice. And I will be. It won't be fair to the team for me to miss. Because if I just wanna get up and leave to do something else one night, what's to stop everyone else from doing it when I'm ready to practice?

It's gotta start now. The commitment to the team must start now. Everyone on the team needs to figure out just how much they are willing to put in to this team. If they don't want to put it in, then get out.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Check out the new Jeff quotes

Last night before dinner, Jeff and I had an awkward conversation online.

Then later in the night, I received an instant message from Albert with a conversation he had with Jeff.

But the greatest quote of the night came from Jeff's girlfriend Courtney.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Here comes the rain again

It's really rainy outside!!!

Actually, it's FREAKING POURING out there!

Honestly, I'm thinking this is day two of forty, if you get my drift!

no lifting

When I asked Jeff if he wanted to go lift with me this afternoon, he told me that he did not want to because outside "it's lightninging. I wanna sit here and be fat and happy."

Monday, February 14, 2005

Why Brad isn't allowed to shop alone

With a lot going on the past few days, I haven't had time to go to Ralphs to get some much-needed groceries. Tonight, Brad was nice enough to go on his own and take care of it. However, when I got back to the apartment, I realized I should never let Brad get groceries unsupervised again. Just Look at our refridgerator and pantry!

Sunday, February 13, 2005

The Poker Tournament

In order to fit enough people into Eddie's apartment for the poker tournament, I decided to bring over the chairs from my place. They barely fit in the back of my car.

Posted by Hello

We were just about to get started at table two around 8:15pm last night.
Posted by Hello

Table one was all set as well.
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At table one, Albert was looking to go all the way and take the first place cash prize.
Posted by Hello

And at table two, both Brandon (in the Dodgers hat) and I had our sights set on the final table.
Posted by Hello

At table two, Hot Karl picked up some extra chips with a full house, fours over sixes.
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In a shocking turn of events, Albert became the first person to lose at the tournament. Brian, happy that Albert was out, decided to make a funny face.
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I hadn't really won much of anything until I picked up pocket 8s (seen here). Posted by Hello

I picked up a third 8 on the turn for my first significant win of the night, beating Karl's pair of jacks. Little did I know there would be much more to come. Posted by Hello

So I gathered up all my hard-earned chips before my next hand... Posted by Hello

...which happened to be pocket aces. Jeff, a friend of Eddie's brother, had a low chip stack and a decided to go all in after picking up two pair on the flop, queens and jacks. The only problem was I picked up a third ace. I won the hand, and Jeff was the first casualty at table two. Posted by Hello

Jeff couldn't believe it as he got up from the table to join Albert as the two people now out of the tournament. Posted by Hello

He sure didn't bet on me having pocket aces. Posted by Hello

Over at table one, Brad entered the tournament after Albert left and was putting on his glasses for every big hand. Overjoyed by Brad sitting next to him, Brian once again makes a funny face. Posted by Hello

Brandon (Eddie's brother) became the next casualty at table two and the second person I took out of the tournament. Posted by Hello

After the win over Brandon, I was clearly the chip leader at table two. (white: $0.10; red: $0.25; black: $0.50 and green: $1) Posted by Hello

Jim (left) and Dave (right) were looking at a good straight draw with a jack, ten, nine and eight all on the table. Posted by Hello

Jim threw all his chips into the pot, putting Dave all in, then he sat back and watched as Dave called...and lost. Jim took Dave out and table two was down to six players... Posted by Hello in a random drawing, Curtis was selected from table one to join our table to make the numbers even. Posted by Hello

Eventually, Karl and Curtis both lost, leaving our table with five people... Posted by Hello Eddie became the next person randomly selected to balance out the tables. Posted by Hello

But with every other person's loss, I picked up more and more chips... Posted by Hello

...and decided to trade out most of them for the $5 blue chips. Those 11 blue chips alone added up to $55 in chips (and I along with everyone else had started with $20). Things were looking good. Posted by Hello

Over at table one, Brad was building up his chip stack after flirting with elimination. Posted by Hello

Brian took defeat harded than most players last night.

(photo courtesy of eddie)

When there were only nine people left, everyone from both tables came over to our table to form the final table for the tournament. I was chip leader going in. Posted by Hello

I traded out my red and white chips for blues, greens and blacks and made a run for the top spots and cash winnings. Posted by Hello

Eddie also advanced to the final table and was ready to win his own tournament. Posted by Hello

Eddie's friend Joel made a risky all-in bet but stayed alive when his pocket aces won the hand. Posted by Hello

Brad had also made it to the final table and made use of his glasses with each important hand. Posted by Hello

And for a little guy he was building a big pile of chips with each win. Posted by Hello

Eddie wasn't having much luck at the final table but managed to avoid elimination. Posted by Hello

He decided to put on a hat and get drunk to help his chances. Surprisingly, his strategy was paying off... Posted by Hello he went outside and had a cigar. Posted by Hello

Life is good when you're smokin' a cigar and playin' poker.

(photo courtesy of eddie)

Eddie was enjoying himself while Jordie, the only girl in the tournament, was trying to avoid elimination and make it to the money. Posted by Hello

I was just sitting back and taking it all in. I was still the chip leader and had stolen Brad's glasses for a hand. I assumed taking his glasses would cripple his ability to play poker, but I was wrong. Posted by Hello

There were six players left at the final table: (clockwise) Jordie, Mike, Brad, myself (not pictured) Brett and Eddie. The top four won money, and fifth place would get their $20 buy-in back. Brandon sat in between Eddie and Brett, closely watching each hand... Posted by Hello

...until Eddie flipped Brandon's chair and down he went. Posted by Hello

And while the fall broke the chair, the chair broke Brandon's fall. Posted by Hello

Eddie started showing signs of weakness or at least signs of "drunk-ness" as the night progressed. Posted by Hello

When Brad put Jordie all-in, Eddie advised her to call, but her pocket jacks were no match for Brad's runner-runner two pair. Jordie let Eddie know she was less than thrilled about his advice to call. Posted by Hello

After Mike lost (5th place), Brett along with Eddie, Brad and myself were guaranteed some profit. Brett made his move with his queen-jack offsuit... Posted by Hello

...and while Brett paired his jack on the flop, at the same time, I paired my king. Brett bet big, and when I put him all-in he called. The river gave me three kings and solidified my spot in the top three. Brett finished in 4th place. Posted by Hello

With only Eddie, Brad and myself left in the game, the prize money was on the table and on the line. Adding up the $20 buy-ins, 3rd place would get $60, 2nd would get $90, and the tournament champion would take home $150. Posted by Hello

With the blinds increased to $4/$8, Eddie was unable to keep pace with me and Brad. He took 3rd place in the tournament. Posted by Hello

You can see why Brad did so well in the tournament...INTIMIDATION!

(photo courtesy of eddie)

After defeating Eddie to solidify my spot in the top two, Brad and I decided that because it would have taken a while for one of us to actually take all of the other's chips, and because it was already 2:45am, we called it a draw. We split the combined 1st and 2nd place prize money and called it a night. Posted by Hello

VICTORY IS OURS! Brad and I split the $240 as co-champs of the tournament.

(photo courtesy of eddie)

Thinking about the tournament this morning, I don't mind that I split the winnings with Brad. As you can see, there was plenty to go around. Posted by Hello

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