Wednesday, December 09, 2009

What I keep up my sleeves instead of aces

Monday evening I played at the Venetian. I was wearing my usual poker outfit of a long-sleeved shirt and a sweatshirt. About an hour into the session I was feeling warm, so I slipped the sweatshirt off over my head and draped it over the back of my chair.

A few seconds later I caught a bit of movement out of the corner of my eye, and was extremely startled to look down at my right upper arm and see a cricket! It made me flinch and jerk, because it was so completely unexpected. That caused the cricket to jump, landing in the middle of the poker table. Somebody quickly brushed it off of the table, and it was gone.

I still can't figure out how and when it got there. I wear different shirts and sweatshirts for poker than I do at home. (If you think I look slummy when at the tables, you should see me lounging around here. What I wear out is, for me, dressing up. It's the nicer crumpled shirts, with the less-threadbare sweatshirts!) Those two items had been draped across the unused side of my bed since the night before, when I took them off upon arriving home from my previous poker session. After I put them on Monday night, I headed straight for the Venetian, with my only detour being to my mailbox and a stop in the apartment complex office, where they had a couple of packages that had been delivered for me that day. There are usually a bunch of crickets on the sidewalks around this place, but it was raining all day Monday, and they weren't to be seen. It's hard to believe that one somehow jumped up from the ground and squeezed in between layers during that short walk, without me noticing it. It's barely plausible that one was riding along on the boxes I picked up and crawled from there up my arm, but I doubt it.

That means that most likely the little bugger had been not only in my apartment (which has happened a few times before), but on my bed (which has not), and found a warm, comfortable place to sleep inside my sweatshirt sleeve, only to wake up when we got to the Venetian. Hey, maybe he wanted an upgrade in accommodations. I know I would, if I had that choice.

By the way, the crickets where I grew up (Illinois) were all black. Here they're nearly all tan (as shown above; image taken from here), some of them so light that they look almost clear. They're harmless, but the sight of one showing up in the most unexpected place, at the most unexpected time, is a bit off-putting.

It was one of the oddest moments I've had playing poker.

Next time I'm playing cricket, maybe the ace of spades and a poker chip will fall out of my sleeve.


Anonymous said...

Please tell me you do actually play (or even enjoy watching!) the wonderful game that is cricket!

Wine Guy said...

Good thing the cards on your other sleeve did not fall out!