I was on a couple of mental health days recently and during that time I played a game of $1/$2 limit Texas Hold ’em.
I sat at the last empty seat across from a man wearing a fur duster and a giant black hat. Mother of pearl buttons….you get the idea. I’d say he was maybe 26 or so. Old enough to know about manners at least. I sat through about eleven hands before I got something worth playing. I played the hand and won.
At this point BBH (Big black hat) says something he probably thought was witty and his entourage that was sitting in the seat next to him (an entourage can consist of one person right?) actually laughed and said “Yeah, man… yeah.” with a little giggle. Just like in the cartoons.
I have played poker for a very long time. I can kick shit with the best of them. Last time I checked there was a line that divided kicking shit to being just rude. And misogynistic. And just being a heinous douche bag in general.
I said nothing, and played some cards. A few hands go by and this guy keeps talking borderline ugly stuff to me…to the point where the dealer leaned over to me and asked me if I was ok.
I told the dealer I was fine. No worries. Then, when I shouldn’t have said anything, my curiosity got the best of me, and I gave him an open door to be a jerk. I asked him “Is that coyote fur?”
Well he just got this smug look on his face while he informed me that yes, his long duster was made of coyote fur, some of them were coyote puppies, and that he killed them himself. He then begins to laugh and his entourage laughs with him.
“Great.” I think to myself, “good one, you shouldn’t have said anything.”
So then I ask him (in for a pound and all that) “Did you eat them?”
I was looking at his hands and discovered something. This “cowboy” had never worked as a cowboy, ranch hand, or anything like that in his life! His hands were nicer than mine. I bet he was a desk jockey playing dress up. You can get a manicure, but you can’t erase work lines, scars, and calluses.
He answered my question with a sneer and question, “Who eats dog?”
What I SHOULD have said was “Who HUNTS dog?”
But I didn’t, I just shook my head. He asked me if ALL my hair was blue. (My husband dyed most of my hair blue-green at my request. I wanted mermaid hair an he is humoring me.) I just looked at him while I decided what I was going to do with my pocket jacks. He raised me while being ugly. So I call him. I turn trips. He raises, I call. All the while, blah, blah, blah. So nothing to help for the turn or the river. He bets out $20. I look at him. I raise him. He looks at me for a long minute. Then folds. I win.
This is a very long intro to a point that was difficult for me to come to. I didn’t get angry. Annoyed, yes but not angry. It was a first for me. Anyone who knows me would have just waited for the top of my head to come off. To say I can be prickly is an understatement.
I just didn’t feel anything. I realized that what that person saw in me, or felt about me didn’t matter to me in the slightest. His behavior didn’t surprise me at all.
Having recently left my 9 to 5 in retail to run my own business has taught me a valuable lesson, doing what you love changes your whole perspective on things. You are your own boss. Which is very freeing on the one hand but it also means that if something doesn’t get done, or a deadline is missed or what have you, it’s your bag. So, I work twice as hard as I ever did for anyone else. Most of the time I am happy. I create beautiful things. I work hard for myself and my family. Why should I care what anyone else thinks of me? I’ll use that energy for creation, not to fuel useless anger and frustration.