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So, it’s been over 25 years since I attended my first BARGE gathering in Las Vegas. Don’t know about BARGE? I’ll tell you more about it some other time. All you need to know is it was (and is) a collection of poker degenerates who get together in Vegas to play poker, tell lies, and carouse until the wee hours. I bring this up because it gives you a lower bound on how long I’ve been hanging around Situs Poker Online players.

Which means I’ve been hearing bad beat poker stories that long.

Early on, I realized that I hated listening to bad beat poker stories. After you’ve heard the first half dozen, they’re all the same. You learn nothing from them, and they don’t provide any consolation to the teller. They’re a great waste of time and create negative energy.

But they seemed to be de rigueur among poker players, so I came up with a great idea: I charged $1 to listen to a bad beat poker story. Here’s how it went:

Random poker degenerate friend: “You won’t believe this. [actually, yes, I would]: I flop top two and…”
Me: “Wait. Is this a bad beat story?”
Degen: “Well, yeah, but…”
Me: [extending hand] “Gimme a dollar, or one of us is leaving.”

I’m not making this up—there are people reading this article who have given me a dollar to listen and commiserate. Usually, though, the bad beaten player would go look for somebody who had a lower price to listen to his story. Generally, the price would be that person replying with, “Hey, you think that’s bad; listen to this…”

One r00ler did proffer a $100 bill and say, “I want to put you on retainer.”