I love to play online poker, but I recently realized how much of a different person I become when things don’t go my way. Here is the chat log, verbatim (screen names changed):
Dealer: marids11 (button) showed 10cQs and won ($170.60) with a straight, Nine to King
Seat 9: Youngman Brown showed KhKd and lost with three of a kind, Kings
Youngman Brown: aslkjflaskjf
Youngman Brown: WTF
Youngman Brown: you call all the way down with a ****ing gutshot?
Youngman Brown: what a ****ing donk
marids11: hehehe ul
Youngman Brown: unlucky my *** you idiot
Youngman Brown: you just called your entire stack with a 4 outer
Youngman Brown: I hope you get herpes.
The anger that flows from me is justified because this guy deserves to get verbally assaulted and that is a “bad beat” in any poker player’s book. What is surprising to me is my choice of ammunition.
Herpes? It’s not only mean, but it’s so… specific.
On the virtual poker table, I have been called almost every name in the book, as I have shelled out my fair share of bad beats. People have wished for me to die, or for me to kill myself. People have said, “fuck you,” “fuck off,” and “fuck that.” I have been told to fuck myself and I have also been told to fuck my own mother.
But nobody has ever wished a venereal disease upon me.
I am not sure what incited me to summon the VD. Perhaps it is the Pokerstars chat logs, which ingeniously weed out and replace almost all of the curse words with an equal lettering-amount of asterisks.
I must give the creator of the software credit, however. It can even asteriskcise parts of words. For example: “asshole” = “***hole.” It knows when to lay off, too. For example: “assume” = “assume,” not “***ume” as you might assume it would be. Genius! During one session, I tested the software to the brink, in order to discover which words were virtual poker-appropriate and which words failed the test. Imagine my virtual tablemate’s confusion:
Youngman Brown: assuage
Youngman Brown: Charles ****ens
Youngman Brown: shittimwood
Youngman Brown: assassinate
Some might consider this a waste of time, but in my adventures through the dictionary, I learned some very interesting things. Did you know that a Dick test is a test to determine susceptibility or immunity to scarlet fever? Or, that “bitch goddess” is an actual noun, meaning material or worldly success?
I mean, it is great that I am able to talk about the wood of the shittah tree, but what happens when my poker discussions shift into dialogues about the central themes of David Copperfield and we cannot even utter the author’s name!
There are, of course, ways around the all seeing eyes of the poker chat police. A simple space bar will suffice:
Youngman Brown: go ahead and bet you little *****
Youngman Brown: b itch
It is never manly, however, when you initially forget to input the space bar, and you have to clarify to your opponent exactly what you think he is.
Perhaps all the censorship is why I wished an eruption of blisters on the skin of my opponent. However, even if my angry wishes came true, he would still probably call my bets all the way down to the river, herpes and all. So until I figure how to get a 9% underdog to fold, I suppose I will just go eat shi t and die.