Mean Gene
Mean Gene
Pittsburgh's most decorated poker blogger, which I admit is like being the best shortstop in Greenland

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My Articles

Presto, the Arlo, & the Hammer
An Online Code of Conduct
The Ethics of Ratholing
"The Professor, the Banker..."
"Ace on the River"

My Columns

Lose the Shades
If You Can't Say Something Nice
Whither the Kicker
The Lady is a Champ?
Covering the WSOP (or not)
Statistics, Luck, and Poker
Poker and New Orleans
Managing a Bankroll
How To Tell A Bad Beat Story
Telling Lies
The Power of Poker Tracker
Advanced Card-Handling

My Greatest Hits

5 Things To Do Before I Die
Cafeteria Nostalgia
Mean Gene's Dubious Dating Tips
Poker and Business?
There's No Such Thing As Luck?
Isabelle, Je t'adore
No Shirt No Shoes No Service
Well, The Food Was Good
Good Morning, Mr. Matusow!
The Weekend of our Discontent, I
The Weekend of our Discontent, II
Books That Left Their Mark
Ode to a Fish Sandwich
Bill Simmons Ain't the Poker Guy
The Sports Guy Still Ain't the Poker Guy
Again, The Media Tackles Poker
Five Years After 9/11
Hitting Pretty Girls in the Face
Sixth-Graders Suck

Fellow Poker Bloggers

Guinness and Poker
Cards Speak
Tao of Poker
Up for Poker
Boy Genius
Chris Halverson
Poker Grub
The Fat Guy
Todd Commish
Poker Works
Bill Rini
Bad Blood
Love and Casino War
Double As
Lion Tales
Paul Phillips
Daniel Negreanu
Poker Nerd
Poker Nation
Poker in Arrears
Human Head
Sound of a Suckout
Chicks With Chips
TP's Table Talk
Royal Poker
This is Not A Poker Blog
Chick and a Chair
Go Be Rude
Poker Cheapskate
Poker & Other Stuff
Seven Two
Musical Poker
WPBT Online
Isabelle Mercier
Cardschat Blog
Amy Calistri
BJ Nemeth
Annie's Blog

Poker Sites

Cardschat Poker Forum
Barstool Sports
Card Player
Internet Texas Hold-Em
Poker Pages


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    Friday, July 14, 2006


    This is my 500th post (pauses for applause, pauses some more, drinking it all in...). As this epic milestone approached I tried to think up something doubleplusgood to give to you, my dear readers. And I have some longish posts warming up in the bullpen, but I don't have them done yet and frankly I want to move past this meaningless milestone. 500 posts. Whoopie.

    Like many people who do this blogging thing, I've often asked myself this pressing question, "WHY THE HELL DO I SPEND SO MUCH TIME WRITING THIS CRAP?" Seriously, 500 posts? And I'm long-winded--how many words is that? A quarter-million? More? Jesus, that's like 5 novels I could've had in the can. The time I've wasted! And when you figure that about 350 of my previous posts dealt with how some donkey called my 4BB raise with J-9 offsuit and flopped the straight to crack my aces...oh, oh, oh the humanity.

    Of course I'm one doggone lucky blogger. Every day a few hundred people read what I write, which is cool. Far cooler are the people I've met over the last 500 posts, all of whom are, uh, far cooler than me. Hell, people I know are covering the World Series again this year, and, hell, a dozen or so are PLAYING in it. Our strange little community has come so far, sniff...

    But a few nights ago I again found myself thinking, "Why the hell DO I spend so much time writing this crap?" I had a bad night, couldn't sleep. Got out of bed around 4AM, poured myself a glass of cabernet sauvignon (gotta get back in wine mode for this weekend) and hoped alcohol would dull the racing thoughts in my mind. It took its damn time about it, but eventually I got woozy and went back to bed.

    In the meantime I read a few late-updating blogs, checked the news. Checked my own blog, and saw that I'd gotten a few hits from the Blogger Buzz blog. Turns out they'd been following the WPBT hijinks out in Vegas and they posted a little something about F-Train's big win. And then they mentioned some other poker blogs people should check out and they listed mine. I actually laughed out loud-in part because it's always nice to get a little attention, but also in part because it seemed a bit silly to put MY name out there. Hell, I wasn't even IN Vegas. And I'm not exactly your source for red-hot poker action.

    As the wine fuzzed my brain I wondered if I'll write 500 more posts on this here blog. And then I wondered if that would be a good thing or a bad thing. Lately the passing of time has weighed heavily on my mind. I think that's why I couldn't sleep the other night, my life has been in a state of flux and I don't have any clue what my future holds. It caught up to me that night and my mind wouldn't stop asking questions that have no answers. At least no answers that I'm privy to.

    There was an article in Slate a few months back written by a woman who abandoned her blog. She did so because it was keeping her from her other writing, the work that was really important to her. I'm sure I'm not the only person out there who hasn't looked at that dread "DELETE THIS BLOG" button and seen in it's stark, blue rectangularness a chance to make some grand, futile gesture, one that doesn't involve crashing a wedding ceremony or cutting yourself.

    But seriously, what would be the point of deleting a blog? There's probably some way to reconstitute it, or you can spend ten seconds and start a new one. Heck, even the woman who wrote in Slate about abandoning her blog left herself an out, writing, "I suspect I'll come back to blogging eventually. It will be something I quit on occasion, like whiskey and melted cheese, when the negative effects outweigh the benefits."

    (A brief aside--What negatives to whiskey and melted cheese have?)

    The best way to send a blog to oblivion would be to stop writing. And I don't think I can do that. Don't want to do that. I like writing. Like arguing. Like pontificating. Like making myself feel all smart and tough. Like patting myself on the back. And as I'm a quiet and shy guy in person, this is where I get to mouth off. Where I get to say what I goddam please. Where I'm Mean Gene.

    Am I going to write 500 more posts? Dunno. But I'm pretty sure post 501 will be about me drinking lots of red wine in blistering heat, with the occasional chilled Reisling as a restorative (thanks, DP).

    And so, have a good weekend. Looking forward to reading lots of good stuff when I get back. get this widget Please visit Pokernews site for more poker news, poker strategy articles or poker rules.

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