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November '04 Cruise Reports

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  • November '04 Cruise Reports

    Let me begin by saying that I enjoyed the CardPlayerCruise and would go to sea with them again.

    That being said, there were problems with the pokerroom but even I, a card-carrying skeptic, believe were caused solely by Carnival Cruise Lines; the dealers told us the truth after many and/or several drinks. For that reason I will not be traveling with Carnival again. Lots of players raved about the previous cruises with Holland America, so that would be my next choice.

    I would like to recommend the PSO December '05 cruise---but I cannot because as of this date the cruise next year is booked with Carnival. I would love to sail & play with a bigger group of PSO members but I won't trust my money again to Carnival. All this adventure really lacked was more of the PSO crew to play with and the additional 5 or 6 tables that CPC brought with them that Carnival would not let them set-up, despite a previous agreement.

    Some hi-lites beyond the long wait lists and crowded cardroom:

    --finding a very, very juicy 6-12 game late in the week that made up for most, if not all, of my questionable tournament play;
    --the three shore excursions, there are lots of choices of what to do in port, we chose well for our 'tastes' and enjoyed all shore trips;
    --friendly PSO faces whether you made a final table or walked away early;
    --ya'll think they feed you in Tunica!

    I hear rumours of pictures 'to-be-posted' and I expect several if not many more trip reports. Feel free to just add them on to this thread because you can be sure I will feel the need to comment on any accusations or slurs what might arise (you know they can edit those pictures with them there computers and make it look like you are hugging just about anybody).

  • #2
    Welcome back zeroth. But where are the embarrassing stories...the tales of drunken debauchery...silly forays with mindless house advantaged games...a bad beat whine. This hardly meets minimum PSO gathering trip report standards 8)

    Comment


    • #3
      OilDoe
      Not to worry, I have trip report goodies galore as soon as I am awake. One of them even involves Zeroth and a woman in fish net nylons complete with a bar room setting.

      Comment


      • #4
        I knew I could count on you, New Jane

        So hurry up and have that cup of coffee!

        Comment


        • #5
          Part One
          Cruising with PSO members: The Untold Story

          The Carnival Legend is HUGE. Unfortunately, they were not able to find space to give Card Player Cruises enough room for the poker tables that were trucked from Vegas to Ft. Lauderdale. So, for 8 days, I bumped into people in the poker room. And for 8 days, people bumped into me and ran over me

          Thur. Nov. 11

          Bruce and I get up from an expensive nights sleep at some froo-froo hotel near the piers in Ft. Lauderdale. I am sure had we Googled for an inexpensive hotel, we could have found something for less than $217 that had sheets that stayed tucked in.

          We want an early ON cause we are **** retentive. Well, one of us is. We eat breakfast, grab a taxi and are AT the embarkation location and in line for early on yellow stickers by 10 am. However, the Customs dogs didn't cooperate, so the fine folks coming OFF the boat were held up, so we stood in line for 3 hours. At least I ran into SHARLA, our very own PSO BUSINESS MANAGER FOR THE USA, so visiting with Sharla made the "standing in line" process a bit more tolerable. Got on the boat at 1. Lovely room, gorgeous lobby, awesome blown glass figures sitting around, but where the heck is the poker room.

          4:45 PM Day One
          Card Player cruisers all meet in the Firebird Lounge for meet and greet. I rapidly spy Idoru, Bounder and Joybell. Walked around a bit and ran into Mark, Tina, and their lovely children. More on that later. THEN, I spy someone that resembles their profile picture, PSO member "ibpatti". After chatting with her a bit, she tells me we can sign up early for the first of the four tournaments. SO I make my way over to the crowd assembled to sign up for next day's $120 NLHE, and there I see Zeroth, Spiegel and someone taps me on the shoulder and it is Gary Adler, gadler. Everyone is accounted for! Even Ms. Sharla decided to sign up!

          7:15
          Poker Room Opens to Mob Scene and Possible Mass Tromping of the Elderly and Incapaciated

          What happens when you assemble 400 poker players and 12 tables? DUH. What happens next might not be something you want to have your pre-adolescent household members see. IT SUCKED. People were pushing and literally ramming into each other trying to 1) figure out which table they wanted based on games, and 2) the best way to reach that table. All means of approach were legal. I think my favorite was the "push the old man who is in a wheel chair and dependant on oxygen" out of the way, THEN climb ON the chairs, travel across the ledge of the bay window, THEN stop, drop and roll across any poker table standing between you and the one you want. Only to hear the floor announce that table 8 was going to be 2-4 NOT 4-8. You get the picture. ( kudos to Card Player cruise personel for a valiant attempt to keep things organized and running smoothly inspite of the lack of tables...)

          Thanks to a very enterprising woman from Phoenix, on Day Three, she set up a que line and left dining early to monitor the line and make sure there were no fatalities. There were none. Standing in the line for a seat for half hour each night will be something I never forget. About quarter to seven each night, a mass exit from the dining room took place. This was poker players leaving BEFORE dessert to find a place in line...

          End of Day One: Meeting all the Spouses

          Poker School members have awesome spouses/significant others/partners, and I think they deserve their own paragraph.

          ZEROTH and Pat: Now, those of you who know Tim realize it will take a very special lady to spend the better part of a lifetime with him. Pat is just that woman. I enjoyed meeting her and had the good fortune to eat a meal or two with her as well as the "HI" as we passed in the elevators, dining areas, pool area ( yes, I did go to the pool). Pat, it was awesome meeting you and I am so glad you attended our event.

          Spiegel and Hugh: WOOHOOO what can I say about these two love birds. If there was ever a match made in heaven, it is this one. Not sure which of these two hotties is responsible for all the laughter I would hear coming from the cigar bar outside the poker room, but something tells me it was a combination of both personalities. it was great to spend time with you! ( Funny Spiegel story to follow in Part 2)

          Idoru_99 and Linda: Ok, you already know you two are two of my favorites. Linda, it was so nice to see your smiling face. Even when Mike wasn't, you were. THANKS for not going to the tan bed, guys
          Linda, I think turn about would be fair play. Why not sign yourself up for a "scrapbooking" cruise, and ask Mike to tag along!

          Bounder and Mary: Joel brought his wife, Mary and even tho I didn't get to spend much time with them, I saw her with a rather pleasant look on her face MOST of the time, and I think that might have to do with Joel's awesome performance in the tourneys. More on THAT later, too. Mary, can't wait to see you again, and it was a pleasure meeting you.

          Gary Adler and Amie: However you spell it, Gadler has a lovely wife and he even brought his Mom along. It is always fun to meet new PSO members, and this time, I got two for the price of one. Nice to see you, Amie.

          Joybell and assorted relatives: LOL. Gosh I love you, Joybell. Folks, Joybell endured a rather long 8 days with some non-pokerplaying cousins, but I did manage to whisk her away for one meal and LOTS of poker.

          IBPatti and Ed: Patti is a new PSO member, and it was a delight to meet her and her hubby, Ed. Ed is a serious looking, well-dressed gentleman with an easy demeanor. He also plays a mean game of poker. Many of you will get to meet Ed in Tunica as he will be driving his lovely wife there as she WON the PSO Live Tour event, thus qualifiying for the Grand Final in January. More on THAT later, too.
          Ed, it was nice meeting you and get the oil changed in that RV. YOu are gonna need it over the next few years if Patti keeps up her winning streak.

          Last but not least, my own Bruce. What is there to say about a man who is patient AND generous. He didn't stand in the way of my playing, other than monitoring my money a bit tighter than I wanted.
          ( Thanks, Joybell...) You never see the man without a smile on his face. But then, what's not TO smile about being married to me!

          My second part will talk about the poker and the PSO members who played it.

          Comment


          • #6
            answer to the Carnival issues

            Sorry to be a bit off the Road Trip flavor of this thread but since I brought up the problems we had on the recent CardPlayerCruise, I thought I should give you the response I got today.

            Text of my email to CPC and their reponses:
            zeroth: I have just returned from the West Carribean cruise and I would like to ask a question or two. We all heard about the Carnival screw-up or screwing, depending on your prespective. I was just writing up my 'Trip Report' for the PokerSchoolOnline forum and while I was giving you high marks, I was not so pleasant with the Carnival folks. I did say that I would travel with CPC again but not with Carnival; however I now see that next year PSO was another cruise with you in December and that is on a Carnival ship.
            So, are you going to change that?

            CardPlayerCruise (CPC): We have already started selling the cruise, so we are not able to cancel it. What we will do is try to get Carnival to commit in writing to giving us more space. If they are unwilling to do so, we will limit our cabin sales to fit the appropriate number of tables that the space they give us will accomodate.

            zeroth: If not, what assurances can you give that Carnival will not pull the same stunt again?

            (CPC): We have traveled with Carnival many times and have never had a problem with them before. As I said above, we will make sure that either we get extra space, or we will not sell as many cabins as we had planned to sell.

            zeroth: Will those assurances be in the form of a refund possibility if you trust Carnival and I do not and we get cheated again?

            (CPC): I would say it was more of a miscommunication than that they intentionally cheated us. We thought the convention area was going to include the immediate area outside of the Round Table as well as inside the Round Table. They thought all along that it was only going to include the Round Table and the Trump Card Room. When we realized two months ago that we were not going to have the additional area, we stopped selling cabins, but it was already to late. We are on a sister ship to the Legend next year, so I am going to speak with several of the top sales executives at Carnival next week to try to get more space. If we are unable to get more space, we will stop selling at 250 total passengers, which is about 150 players.

            zeroth: I must tell you I am going to change the last several lines of my post to the PSO gang and reserve any endorsement of traveling with CPC if you are booking with Carnival.

            (CPC): I understand if you do not want to book with Carnival, but hope you will change your mind. Their fares are the least expensive of all the cruise lines, and I thought they did a good job of taking care of most of our needs. I can assure you that space will not be a problem, although if Tina wants to change to make the PSO cruise happen on one of our Holland America cruises, we will certainly accomodate you. The Alaska cruise is awesome!

            Comment


            • #7
              Day Two: The first of four tourneys: Meeting NEW PSO members!!

              The first tourney was to start at 10 am on the first sea day. $120 NLHE. So many people signed up that all 12 tables were full, AND there was an alternate list. Standing in line for seat assignments, a very attractive woman came over to me and said, "I am a PSO member". I said, WOOHOOO, nice to meet you. This was my first meeting with Kathy V., aka BettyWins. I introduced her to Mark and Tina, who were busily handing out awesome PSO merchandise. ( BE AT TUNICA and get your stuff. The PSO Coin is the most awesome thing I own now that is poker related) Later, I met her husband, Ken.

              My seat was at a table in the "other poker room", a small room at the other end of the ship where three tables were housed. Once I found my seat and the game was on, my table mates were very interested in PSO thanks to the PSO COIN. The man immediately to my right said, " I am a PSO MEMBER." Meet Cadillac-Joe. PSO members were coming out of the woodwork, so until he busted out, Joe and I had great conversations about poker in general and PSO in specific. WHile Joe doesn't play alot on PSO, he was a great table mate and it was fun meeting him.

              During the first break, I met another PSO member who was new to me, LisaBarr. Lisa told me that she had just finished 3rd in the Monday, Nov. 8 2-Day event! WOOHOOO Lisa. I didn't run across her again during the cruise, so Lisa, if you are reading this, it was nice to meet you!

              Total PSO members in the event: 11. When all was said and done, TWO PSO MEMBERS make the final table. IBPatti and BettyWins. These members played an excellent game, finishing 1st and 2nd. I stood and watched the action until it was down to four, when I had to leave. Both women made PSO very proud with their excellent play, and when they got down to two, they made a cash deal, and awarded IBPatti the Live Tour Seat!

              NewJane tourney highlights: NONE When I busted, the tables combined to four. Well, at least I made it long enough to get moved to the BIG ROOM.


              Day Three and 2nd Cruise Tourney: $120 Limit HE.

              Well, if by now the Card Player cruise folks weren't aware of the presence of PSO, they will be when the final table again boasts TWO PSO MEMBERS. Bounder finished 3rd, and BettyWins appeared again at the final table, finishing 9th. WAY TO GO, Joel and Kathy!

              A fine combination of great poker playing AND members wearing PSO shirts, flashing PSO COIN, and being just generally awesome players made PSO a huge presence on this cruise!

              Part three of my post will answer the question: WHERE IS MARK AND TINA? And WHO IS THE ADORABLE BLONDE GIRL?

              Comment


              • #8
                The next day or so:

                Mark and Tina work very long hours keeping PSO up and running. Their email boxes are always full, some days over 400 emails that need attending to, not to mention myriad other issues to face and handle. If anyone needed a break, it was Mark and Tina. Enter one little girl named Georgia. She is the youngest child of our beloved PSO mentors, Mark and Tina. ( They also have a very handsome young son named Joe, who, everytime I saw him on the ship was surrounded by an assortment of pretty American girls!)

                Georgia sings. That is putting it mildly to say the least. This child is multi-talented. She is, what they say in the biz, THE COMPLETE PACKAGE. During the daily Karoke sessions, people lined up just to hear her sing. She captivated the audience with her music. I told Bruce it would be much more fun if the Karoke sessions were Georgia Only events! I am so happy that I took the time off the tables to hear her sing. Later in the week, Georgia swooped to victory in the Karoke contest. She would have also won the ShipBoard Talent contest had she been 16 and old enough to enter. Shame on Carnival Cruise Lines for omitting the most talented person on the ship because she is only 12. Keep your fingers crossed as Mark and Tina are flying with Georgia to NYC later in December to meet with some "powers that be". BEST OF LUCK, sweet little one! You are going to go far..

                Linda Johnson and Jan Fisher hosted a PSO party during the cruise, where we had an opportunity to EAT ( yes, eat, imagine that..) It was fun to have everyone assembled for a few pictures, some booze, and general bulls***ing.

                This brings me to my final post..." Things you hear/see on a Poker Cruise...ala PSO STYLE"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Things I saw/heard that might not be fit to print, but I will print them anyway:

                  **Spiegel loves her Johnny Walker Red. ( doubles, actually.) Hugh loves her. Everyone loves her, actually! Anyway, one night, Ruth met another poker cruiser, who by chance happened to be named Johnny Walker. She said, " HI, nice to meet you...and oh, I HAD YOU THREE TIMES LAST NIGHT." LOL Ruthie!!!!!

                  **During the PSO get together on Wed. that was so kindly sponsored by CPC and Mark and Tina, I was witness to something that shook me to the core. Not sure IF Zeroth KNEW I saw, but I did, Tim, you bad boy. Zeroth was standing with his significant other, Pat. Obviously deep in poker conversation and not paying attention to his HAND, he had it firmly planted on Pat's backside. Now, my camera was not handy, so I wasn't able to catch it on film for historical purposes, but TIM KNOWS, and now, you all know.

                  **Joybell sailed with some relatives. Inspite of that bad beat, she managed to be the belle of the ball everytime she was in the poker room. Always dressed to the nines on other occassions when I have spent time with her, Joybell really let her hair down this trip! Not only did she Fall down on her veranda and mess up her ankle, she managed to wriggle into some VERY TIGHT and FASHIONABLE ...drum roll....BLUEJEANS. YOU GO GIRL!!!!!!!!!

                  ** I am certain that PSO members left the card room long enough to actually SEE the rest of the Legend ship. However, I didn't SEE anyone in a swimsuit other than Spiegel. She wasn't aware I saw her all tanned and looking pretty dang good in a two piece, but I did see her. Speaking of swimsuits, I managed to order one from Lands End that did a decent job of covering about 98% of my middle aged granny body. Thanks, Lands End!

                  **Gary Adler has a pony tail, folks. It is long and grey, but man, is he HOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If you see him at the PSO tables, it will be difficult to tell he has onem but he does, so give him a bit of fun-loving razzing about it.

                  **In the Omaha event, once again we had a final table attendee. Bounder finished 4th, bringing our PSO presence again to the CASH. Awesome finish, Joel!!!

                  **Zeroth was spotted ( and photographed) ON the bar WITH both arms around TINA. Now, remember,Tina and Zeroth have exchanged "words" on the forum in times past, so this photo op did not fall on deaf ears to say the least. Tina even enhanced the moment with some fish net nylons that I am sure went a long way in the "kiss and make up" moment.

                  **( Wildbill inclusion..) Almost every morning, I stood alone on my veranda deck, gazed out over the vast blueness that is the ocean, and lamented my fate. Once again, alone. No WildBill. No laughing hysterically when someone falls down. No beer foam on my face. No one to push down in the buffet line. No pocket aces to river with my T-T. No "perpetually single man" to flirt shamelessly with. OH WAIT. I take that back...Simply Put, NOT A TRUE PSO EVENT without the Wild One.

                  All in all, a great time was had...and this being my 7th poker cruise, I am here to tell you that it is difficult to find MORE FUN anywhere, well, with the possible exception of a PSO convention!

                  Check out the next one, and get your order in early. Something tells me the next one will sell out early.

                  Lovingly submitted...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks for the detailed reports on the cruise. I wanted to go on that cruise in a bad way! At any rate, Bettywins(kathy), who chopped with ibepatti in the big event, is one of the reasons I joined PSO. It turns out that Kathy and her husband, Ken, are part of the monthly group I play with and I knew I needed to up my game. I found PSO while using pokerpages to follow the WSOP (because Ken was playing in the WSOP) last May. I loved PSO so much, I convinced Kathy to join. Now she is off meeting all the great PSO folks and showing why I needed help with my game to compete with her! At any rate, I am delighted that my friend did well. I plan on going to Tunica and I look forward to meeting a lot of great folks. Thanks again for the reports! Videopokerman- Chuck

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If anyone is insulted by my response to THIS thread, feel free to pound sand and bark at the moon.



                      I am, as usual, saddened to see that Jane didnt miss me even a little bit.

                      I would consider it far more newsworthy if zeroth had patted no fannies. He cant help it if he is a fanny patter.

                      Ruthie had some drinks?

                      Joybell in blue jeans? I wouldnt believe that even if it were true.

                      Ahh well. I am glad to see that there was some fun had. More than a little it looks like. I am only sad that after 8.5 years in the Navy, I decided to never get on a boat with a propeller bigger than me, or more than 3 people ever again.

                      Bill

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Wild one..
                        Once again, the omission of your name was purely coincidental.

                        I have now edited my final post to reflect the many WildBill thoughts I had on the cruise..

                        Forgiven I hope

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Dont feel bad Bill....I was there for the whole 8 days and didnt get mentioned or missed either. 8O

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Au Contraire...
                            You were mentioned not once, but twice in the first segment.

                            apologies accepted of course

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Hahahahaha......guess my first time reading it through, the disappearing ink must have been workin'.....

                              Thanks for the mention......now i can sleep....although I am still feeling like Im on that boat...

                              Comment

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