Friday after work, I met up with someone that I know that plays in a band. I mentioned in this post that I need to find some folks to play with. A week or so after I decided to pursue that, I found out this guy who I have known casually for a few years in fact played guitar in a band. I was at a lunch with him and just plunged in with, "so do you guys need a bass player?" and it turns out they did. We arranged to meet last Friday evening for the band's regular practice. It turned out really well. I played real simple stuff but for the most part was able to fit things into the songs. Although I wouldn't call my playing performance ready by any stretch I think I made clear that I understood the basic role of the bass player in a band and that I had enough knowledge and basic talent to give them faith that I can get up to speed by the time they perform next which is sometime in May, so ... I'm in my first band.
Which means Holy Crap, I've got a bunch of work to do! Their set list has over 30 songs on it, some of which I had never heard before last Friday and none of which I really know how to play yet. There are a couple of tunes which have parts which will technically challenge me, but I think the challenge is exactly what I need to improve my technique (i.e. the physical manipulation of the instrument) and having more confidence in my technique will allow me to get over one of the really big hurdles I've had as a musician.
Saturday was breakfast with Mrs. Flops followed by my bass lesson. As you might imagine from the work I've outlined having to do above, I'm seeing my lessons with a heightened sense of urgency. My teacher was definitely excited to hear about me taking this step and he's promised that we'll go through the whole song list and that he'll help me get ready.
After the lesson, the Mrs. and I headed out to run errands, the biggest of which was me making a run to the mens store to pick out some new suits. That was an involved process, but I'm very happy with what we've picked out and think it will help me stay looking sharp during the day job. When we got home the Mrs. announced that she had a bunch of work to do around the house and suggested I should go play poker. Who am I to argue with a suggestion like that.
I got to the room about 10 minutes before the evening tournament was supposed to start and there was also a cash game going. I elected the tournament which ended up only getting around 20 folks. That was fine with me as I was starting to feel pretty tired (up late the night before and early that morning) and I knew the tournament wouldn't stress my brain too much.
I was groovin' to some great music in my ear buds while I was playing and was able to get into a zen like state pretty quick that helped me be very aware of what was going on.I spent most of my attention focusing on the player two to my left. I was able to pick up some tells on him, both bet sizing and physical which really let me know where he was at pretty solidly. The hands he was in where I wasn't (which was a lot since he was playing just about every freakin' hand) I would watch his behaviors and then make a prediction on what he would showdown and I had him pretty well dialed in. Unfortunately, the main way I got to put those observations to actual use was to know when he had hit some crazy hand that now had me crushed and making laydowns. Meh, that's how it's going to run some time. I played patient and as my stack dwindled and the blinds escalated found myself in EP with two 9s and about 11 big blinds. I stuck it all in and it folded to the button who went into the tank and started counting his chips seeing how much he had left after a call. The tanker had about twice my chips. In my experience at this level of play someone taking this long to make a decision almost always has a hand that has decent equity against something like 99. In this case it was AK. Flop king, turn brick, river king. I smiled and said, "that last one was just kind of rubbing it in." Stood up, wished everyone good luck and headed out of the room. It's nice to be able to bust out of a tournament and not feel that whiny "why can't I ever win a flip" feeling that can be so prevalent among poker players. It's nice to be able to divorce the results from your analysis of how you played. I was actually really happy with how I played especially with being so locked in on one player and knowing that if presented witht he right opportunity I would definitely be able to exploit him. That fact that the deck didn't present me with that opportunity in that session is just the way it goes. Besides, I was freakin' tired and the idea of crawling into bed was pretty appealing right then.
Sunday the Mrs and I got up and started working on a meal we were taking over to my Mom's apartment that afternoon. We made the traditional Easter fare of cheese enchiladas. That's one of Mrs. Flops' specialties and we worked on it together. Rolling enchiladas is kind of a PITA, but when you have two people doing it it feels better cause it goes by faster. I also smoked a chicken to take over to Mom's. We wanted to make sure she had plenty of food at her place that she could just heat and eat because, well, because Mom is starting to show signs of not being so great at taking care of herself ... but that's a whole nother post.
Anyway, we shared a nice meal and then headed home in time to crash and get ready for another week. It was definitely a busy weekend, but also a fulfilling one.