PiecesSo I have my laptop back and it works again, but the DVD drive is still fucked. Beyond fucked, actually. The guy couldn't fix it, nor could his guy. The BIOS says there's no optical drive, Windows says there's no optical drive. But there's an optical drive. Sigh. I did the Upper filters thing and that didn't work. I flashed the BIOS.
I went way beyond my competence and it still didn't work. Sigh.
Still, getting this laptop fixed cost me $75 and I could say fuck the warranty to the warranty people. You know, I think a warranty should mean I just give you the broken thing and I don't have to concern myself with it, but this is Australia, and here, a warranty just means you pay more for your goods, and get nothing for it.
So now I can play more poker, which will be good, because for the next while, I'm withdrawing all the money I make each month. I don't feel pressurised. If I make nothing, that's okay. It's just for a bit extra, to pay off my credit card, which is groaning under the weight of interest free transactions.
No, I am not a fool who takes on interest free and ends up paying through the nose when he can't meet the payment. We have tax concessions here that are paid in lump sums every year, usually in September if you do your tax return quickly. Which is nice. Every September, I settle my debts and can work out where I am financially. Usually, I am at zero.
But, you know, zero is a lot better than most, I know that. I know that my friend Father Luke would like to be at zero, and he's not alone. I do not knock zero.
I am looking at the red mark on my knee. Or at least, I think it is a red mark. I don't mean that I don't know whether it's a red mark or some other thing. I mean it is something that I think is a red mark.
Because my knees are bad. I began to think I was old when I heard the clicking of my knees coming up the stairs. It is like I carry castanets. But it doesn't hurt much.
Or hadn't, until last night, I woke up in my chair with a sharp pain in my left knee. I suppose I have had the slightest twinge, enough to know I have a ligament to wear out, but now I can feel that it is worn.
Some days you feel like a clock that is being wound down. And some days you feel that you are still fresh enough. I am after all trying to learn poker, trying to get to a level at which I could actually make money.
But I am a grown man with a family, and that makes learning tough. Some of my peers play literally thousands of games a month, and I plod along at a hundred or so. Of course, some of what holds me back is fear of failure. I hate to fail. So much that I find it easier not to try.
Yet I will never have failed at it, just as I haven't at a lot of things that it would be easy to tell myself I had achieved too little at. Because I am cautious and moderate, I will likely never go busto. I beat the game I play, and I probably always will (and of course I will improve, and that caution and moderation will turn out to be the foundation of making money, because most who fail do so because they do not take care of their money, or run ahead of their ability).
Actually, I am enjoying poker just now because, yeah, I haven't made the progress some guys would have done in the time I've been learning it, but I am, if not the best, one of the best players at the level I play. I really am. And that may be modest, but I can make $15-20 an hour playing poker fairly reliably. (Not every hour. You have better days and worse, and I don't play to full capacity often.
Most people lose.
And I'm reading about some guy who plays heads up sngs at huge stakes, and is a complete arsehole online, and his mates line up to say what a classy guy he is IRL. And someone inevitably posts how people will be arseholes online but not IRL, and what pussies they are, blah blah. And someone else posts something more interesting: that you are your real self more readily online because you don't need to do all the social shit. I think both POVs are partly true. I'm mostly how I am online. I have to tolerate shitheads less online, and that's a good thing.
It's funny because I was thinking, after skyping with P, how she was actually more of an arsehole IRL than online (which is saying something because she can be a bizzatch when the wind is southwesterly). I am currently running one for four in skyping. I had a nice talk with Father Luke the other night (or at least it seemed nice to me, because he's a pretty cool guy and comfortable on the telephone), but my experience of it has mostly been excruciatingly bad. I am not a great conversationalist in any medium and I use the phone functionally, not as a means of hanging out with people. But when I spoke to S, I was nervous and ran off at the mouth because I didn't want awkward silences; and A didn't seem to enjoy the experience (and didn't repeat it). P has been sulking ever since, spoiling for a fight the whole time, because she knows she was way, way off, and some people just can't let lie the time they fucked up, even if you are letting it go yourself.
I suppose I find it irritating when a person wants me to judge them in a particular way, and is annoyed that I don't. They'll be all, you should think this about me (and this will be something negative, and I don't, because I am generally much more forgiving than people think I ought to be (or maybe more than I seem at first look that I would be)).
Man, the guy out of !!! is a sick good drummer. You could set your watch by him.
The Field, btw, is essential listening. Every time my shuffle hits a track from So here we go sublime, I'm "wow, this is sooooo fucking good", as though somehow I had forgotten. It's so basic in its construction, yet somehow rises above it to be epic and moving.
On the subject of music, this Aussie band are all the rage on the interwebnetz, but I don't get it. Poor man's Hot Chip anyone? Dudes, you've got to match Ready for the floor before I give you iPod space.