Confessions of a Grinder
Playing poker can be so inhuman sometimes. The inhuman nature of poker can be of different types. There are animal-like celebrations when people get lucky or suck out on the river. Then there is the inhuman torture when you’re on the receiving end of a suck-out. Sometimes, people tend to act like animals, throwing chairs around, biting their own knuckles, and grunting and moaning, like wild animals, when they get unlucky. There are also downright ugly poker players who remind you of pugs.
Don’t forget, there are those who hurt other players and act mean- dog-like, with their harsh words and attitude. Of course, we all know weak players at the poker tables are known as fish, nits, mice, donkeys, etc., and strong players are referred to as sharks, eagles, lions, and jackals. To an amateur, they might easily pass as aggressive loud-mouth Big Dogs. But do dogs actually play poker?
In 1903, C.M.Coolidge put this idea into reality when he painted sixteen oil paintings collectively referred to as ‘Dogs Playing Poker’, commissioned by Brown and Bigelow, to advertise cigars. These paintings, criticized as having ‘Schlock’ Value, depicted various poker situations with dogs replacing traditional humans. Interesting thought, isn’t it?
Rick Caran from Long Island went a step further than Coolidge’s crazy imagination. Rick trained his old dog Ruby, a Yorkie, in card games and tricks and, believe it or not, over a period of time, Ruby actually played poker.
I know a couple of smart dogs. They are named Buddy and Lucy, and if our chief dealer is ready to train them, who knows? The main event of a WSOP final table could easily witness mutts in shades and scarfs.