...I received the following email, shown exactly as it was, with no "real world" name anywhere in it:
Hello Rakewell ~
I'm traveling to Vegas Feb. 11-16th for the Venetian Deepstack tournaments and associated cash game juiciness. It would be an honor to meet the illustrious author of Poker Grump while I'm in town!
Who knows, I might even generate a suitably usable reader report.
Please let me know if you're willing to meet-up at a table...
Raise or Fold: A
Year of Risky Business
Writing & playing poker as if they were activities worth doing well.
Fortunately, the air of mystery about the identity of the cheeky, anonymous sender piqued my curiosity, and I replied affirmatively rather than ignoring it or making some excuse. I also followed the link, started reading the blog, and was sufficiently impressed by the intelligence and personality it revealed to put up this post about it four days later. Two days after that, we met at Harrah's poker room, went across the street, and played a session at Caesars Palace, which I excitedly wrote about here. After another several days of getting to know her, there was this follow-up report. And, well, you pretty much know the rest of the story from there.
I think it safe to say that no email has ever done so much to change my life for the better.