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Adventures of a new grinder now living in the Phillipeens

    • CypherPrimes
      Joined: 23.11.2016 Posts: 2
      Hello you fellow grindaholiks,

      My name is John and I am a 39 year old US Army retiree currently living a dream here in the Philippines. I ran across the “Get Rich or Die Trying Bankroll Challenge” as I was reentering back into the poker community. Blogging is something I really wanted to start as I began my second life here in the Philippines and what better way to start then with you guys. So this blog is going to give a little (A LOT) background about myself, my goals, my adventures here in the Philippines and of course my re entered back into the poker world. P.S. WOW biggest intro in the history of blogs below. Sorry just could not stop writing.

      I dumped my first $50 buy in over the past month at 2nl zoom on Poker Stars.

      I will be depositing another $50, study up and grind it out. I will follow the standard bank roll management. I plan to play at least 1000 hands a day maybe up to 6-8000 some days.


      Have fun/get better

      Play minimum 30,000 hands a month.

      Turn $50 into $1000
      Bellow is a lot about me and the crazy times I had in my life. It started as and intro and turned into 17 pages but I made read more tabs so you can skip what what ever you don't want to scroll through.

      I am also looking to grind another sight anyone have any suggestions.

      Well I was born too two druggy parents in Sacramento California.
      Looking back life really sucked then but I didn’t really notice it, it was just life. My mother has been married 7 times and I have had countless shit head step dads along the way. My early life consisted of new step dads and moving every few months and a lot of fighting. Then I was blessed with a miracle and my mom actually met a good non criminal guy who had a job and we ended up moving with him to a rural farm town of 800 people in central Minnesota. Talk about a culture shock. From inner city ghetto to the middle of nowhere. Was the best thing that ever happened to me. I settled in and began a new and exciting life. First time in my life I was able to make friends, play sports and be a normal kid. My mom had a kid with this guy and quickly broke up just like the countless other times. But this time I made a choice and said enough was enough and decided I was staying with my new stepdad. I found a passion for sports and a rapidly became very successful at them. I was 6 foot tall at 12, the same height I am now. I was also around 150 pounds with no fat. On the football field i was like a giant among boys. But I'll dive into that aspect of my life later. I had no real guidance or boundaries growing up. No curfew no expectations to do anything really. So as I became popular in school, started excelling in athletics and started getting a lot of girls, I got really cocky and me and my step dad who I really admirea and should have treated a lot better started to fight. Whe actually fought a few times. I was about 15 at this time and much bigger and stronger than him and had been on the wrestling team for a few years now. Needless to say they were kinda one sided in my favor.

      I then met this amazingly beautiful adopted Korean girl who move into town. Her dad had grown up in this little town and was returning after retiring out of the military. She was 20 years old and I was 15. But we were the only new people to come to this town in the past 3 years. We were both outsiders, grew up in big cities, listened to rap music before the times of “Ice Ice baby” and the whole ghetto rap explosion. We naturally gravitated towards each other and it spiraled into and out of control amazingly awful adventure that spanned the next 13 years many cities 2 states and 3 countries. Later that summer we “ran away” from our small town to the big city of Minneapolis. We spend the summer partying and living at her aunt's house with no care in the world. As the summer ended I knew I had to get back home for the start of football season. So our amazing summer of sex, party, arrest and a short stent in a foster home came to an end. She then got sick of the country life and headed to east St Louis to meet back up with some friends she met while her dad was stationed in Germany. This lead her down a road of becoming a pretty successful drug dealer, being arrested and in and out of a lot of abusive relationships with some pretty hardcore no bullshit gangbangers. After I returned back home from my summer with her, I had a falling out with my step dad and left home to move in with a Highschool friend. His dad owned a boat company and they were pretty well off. This was my first time being introduced to a situation where money was not an issue. Food, cloths, the light bill was not an issue. After living with him for a year, his younger brother died and his parents started to go through a divorce. At this point although I was a overall good kid who really respected this family I saw the signs from experience of a broken family and decided they did not need my added needs thrown into their family dynamic. I left for school that morning and thanked the mom for gratefully taking me in and let her know that I thought with everything going on in their lives it was best for me to move out. This is where my life kinda goes into the twilight zone.

      As I arrived at school that day. Our teachers were not in the classrooms. After a few short minutes we got an announcement over the intercom for everyone to just remain in their chairs and the teachers for each class will return to the classrooms shortly. After the first class had ended the teachers had not yet returned and another announcement came across for us to stay in the class and they would tell us when to change classes. After about another 15 minutes I heard my name come across the intercom to report to the library. This drew a lot of curious looks from my fellow classmates. I remember walking down the hall and thinking what the hell could this be about and why would they call me. Thoughts of my parents or family dieing went through my head, but then I was like why would they hold a meeting about that. Remember this is a town of about 800 where everyone knows everyone, what car you drive, what your dog's name is. As I walked into the library I saw the looks from all the teachers as they sat like an audience in the library. The principal asked me to step into one of the office where the guidance counselor was. I sat down completely dumbfounded on what this was all about. The counselor started by saying he understood that I was no longer staying with the family I had lived the past year with. There was no way they shut down the whole school because of this. No way!. But I shit you not. I told them no I had left this morning because they were having a lot of family problems and did not need to deal with mine. I was then asked where I planned to stay. I responded with whoever. I had spent the majority of the past few years even though I had a home. Staying at several friends houses for many days in a row. I guess I was just going to continue to do that until I figured something out. So the counselor tells me that they had a meeting and one of the teachers had decided to let me live with them. I was so excited because I thought for sure it was my football coach who was also my best friend in the world’s, dad. He was also our math teacher who would use dice baseball games to teach us math problems. Maybe my first good male role model. I use to always think how lucky my best friend Joe was to have a dad like that. Go out in the winter and play tackle football in the snow with all the kids. Sit and play videogames and Risk for hours with us. Something I never saw from a father. Then like a blast from a shotgun, I heard the words.

      My spanish teacher. WTF!! She was a divorced female in her mid 30’s with 2 daughters 6 and 8. Decent looking with an amazing ass. She always came across as kind of a hippie chick and I even heard rumors a few years later that her and another teacher would take weed breaks in their cars between classes. Which explains a lot about her now that I look back. Like I said small town. Our School was combined 7th-12th grade and teachers taught several different subjects. I think that year I had 3 different classes with her. I was like what the fuck? but what the hell. I really didn't have shit else in my life other than the school and my friends at this point. My spanish teacher, we will call Lisa (to protect the not so innocent) lived in a city about 30 miles away called St Cloud. It is a college town that almost doubles in size during the school year do to the 5 or 6 colleges in the city. Unknown to me and the others students, she owned several apartments, homes and even the best college club in the city. WOW how badass is this. Everything was on the hush hush at the beginning but soon everyone found out but it didn't really cause a problem. After one year we moved from are really nice house to an amazing huge place with the Mississippi river as our back yard. BALLAR. It was a great time in my life. Got a new car, wearing Calvin Klein, getting money to just go to the movies with my friends and shit. Brand new life. As High School was coming to an end it was apparent that me and Ms Lisa’s was not. She even talked about selling all her businesses and buying a big yacht to sail around the Caribbean and homeschooled her daughters. Even went to look at some boats. Sounds pretty badass but my whole goal in life for the past 5 years was to make to college to play football and run track. I worked so fucking hard for that goal and could not imaging giving up on that dream. So I chose the college route.

      WOW what a waiste of time that was. I lasted a whole 2 weeks. I ended up getting a scholarship to a division 2 school wich was hugely disappointing because I put up some very impressive football stats as a fullback and linebacker, along with my size, speed and strength. I thought I was a guarantee to get a scholarship to a big school, be on T.V. and take a run at the NFL. Needless to say none of that matters because after two weeks of school, 2 charges of underage drinking, damage to campus property and getting caught naked in a female dorm room. My college football career was over. Instead of going home because I was so embarrassed, failing as this big hometown hero. I met with an Army recruiter and left 8 days later to start my new life as a Soldier.

      Military Life

      In 1995 after a short lived college football career,I entered the Army as an artilleryman.
      I had no clue what that was. I told the recruiter I wanted to jump out of airplanes, travel the world and blow shit up. So there I was off to basic training. Me and the Army got along well. It is a place where good old fashion hard work pays off. They provided you everything you needed. Place to live, food, pretty good paycheck. They tell you where to be and what to do and you do it. Simple. It was in a lot of ways similar to college life. We lived in barracks which are the same as dorm rooms with a bunch of people from all over the US. We worked out every day and partied hard every chance we could. My first duty station was in the in South Korea up by the North Korean border. It was a lot less developed in that area back in 1995. I was lucky enough to return back to South Korea 2 more times throughout my career and spend a total of 6 years there. To this day Seoul is the most amazing city in the world I have ever been too. 20 million people and no crime or dumb ass people at all.

      After spending a year overseas I returned to the US with a new sense of self and my eyes were opened to the bigger world. I reunited with my teenage love. The Korean American 20 year old that I had dated when I was 15. We moved in together in Lawton Oklahoma. Shit didn't work out with us because she fell into her old ways of partying and selling drugs. At this point I was moving into another direction and our life styles didn’t mesh. After another 3 years my contract was up but I decided to stay in the military but changed my job to police officer. Not knowing then but this decision would lead to the most amazing experiences of my life.

      I went back to training and became a military Police Officer. Upon arrival to my new duty station I was in amazing shape and a pretty much a badass. I got a tryout for the SWAT team and quickly made the team and took over command of it 2 years later. I was blessed to work with the Ft Knox Gold Vault security team. We competed in statewide SWAT competitions. I was really loving life. Had a bad ass group of guys. We trained our asses off but would also spend a afternoon at the pool and then hit up a barbeque. After 3 years I returned to Busan Korea which is at south tip of South Korea. A whole different experience from the year I spend at the northern border 6 years prior. It was a coastal city of 3 million. This was also 2002 and the year they held the world cup which was an amazing experience.

      The next chapter of my life lead me to Ft Sam Houston Texas which I was so fortunate to be given my detective badge. I no longer had to wear a uniform or do organized Army fitness every morning. This was also the time I started to get into poker, but I will have a whole chapter of that below. I fucking loved being a detective. It was some of the hardest and longest hours I have ever worked. To this day there is no greater feeling than outsmarting a thug and psychologically mind fucking him to confessing to a crime that you have no evidence or ability to solve otherwise. I was able to attending many advance Police Schools including an FBI interrogation course that translated perfect to the poker table.

      I was then sent to Germany where I continued as a detective and spend time as an undercover narcotics officer. WOW out of control fun. My job was to go from club to club in the area of Germany around the Army bases and party with people and try to buy drugs. It was a lot more complicated than that but still, I got paid to party. My poker game really took off at this point and I got into a regular 1,2 euro home game that I ended up making more money than I was making from my Army paycheck. I did not get to travel around Europe at all because of my job which sucked I was really looking forward to seeing Europe. I was lucky again to be in Germany the year they held the Word Cup. Talk about the biggest party in the world OMG.

      I was sent back to the US 3 years later. I really hated coming back and wish I could have spent all 20 years overseas. I did a few tours back and forth to Iraq and Afghanistan. Don't really want to comment on those times hope you understand.

      I then returned back to Seoul Korea for what I planned to be my last 4 years in the Army. I spent this time in Seoul and loved every minute off it. I was selected to be the personal body guard of the United Nations Commander. Great amazing job but super stress sandwich. Got to travel the world and meet everyone from Obama to the Prime Minister of Britain and everyone in between. The 20th and last year of my military career I spent in my less glamorous job. I was in charge of the Military Police Station in downtown Seoul Korea. For the past 15 years was on special unit teams such as SWAT, as a detective or on the United Nations Security detail. I was always surrounded by high level ass kickers that you could count on to get shit done. The best of the best of the Army. When I returned to the “normal Army” I did not recognize it. My generation was brought up hard and battle tested. All of my peers had done several rotation to war zones over the past 10 years. I could not believe the amount of new cry baby, call of duty playing, political correctness pussies. I knew that first day it was time for me to retire. I submitted my paperwork for retirement and started counting down my days. I had an amazing career. Jumped out of airplanes blew shit up. Spent too much time in the Middle East. Held super high level positions way above what I thought I was capable of. I do miss some thing about the Army and am so glad I fucked up college and that ended up guiding me to my military service and the experiences it gave me.

      Since I was fucked up several times in the military and ended up having 8 surgeries over the past few years. After my 20 years I retired with full retirement and 77% disability. I am not missing my legs or all fucked up in the head with PTSD. I just tooks some bombs and bullets and got my ass kicked over the 20 years. So when it was time to pick where I was going to retire I looked at a map of the United States and realized there was nowhere I wanted to live. So much crazy, ignorant people in the US. I planned to stay in Korea and attend Busan University to finish my degree in sports science I had been working on over the past 20 years. I wasn't able to get the paperwork in time to start college so I got a Job as a Crossfit fitness coach right on an amazing beach in Busan Korea. What a dream, doing what I truly had passion for in an amazing city with an amazing girl couldn't ask for more. Well shit didn't work with the girl and my gym flooded so that dream quickly fucking ended.

      I had a clarifying moment a REALLY REALLY awakening. See with all my military training in security and SWAT being a detective and the personal bodyguard for the 8th most powerful man in the world. It can lead to other very lucrative career opportunities. Like working security for princes in the middle east or guarding oil rigs. Or being head of a security for large corporations in the US. I applied at a buch and got some amazing offers making over $200,000. But then I thought what the fuck for. I would have to drive an hour or two through traffic every day, where a fucking suit. Sit through meetings and listen to some over paid dump ass fuck shit up, that I would have to fix. Spend way too much on the suburban house with a white fence, and get hooked up to the matrix. So I threw a big going away party with all my Army buddies and systematically gave everything I owned away. 50000 SUV. 72 inch HD TV. Furniture everything! I packed one backpack grabbed my passport and booked a flight to the Philippines the next day, with no plan at all. I arrived in Cebu city found a hostel and began the first day of the rest of my life.

      As a young child I moved around every few months and only played organized sports 1 time in little league baseball.
      Boy did I suck. I played right field and got maybe 2 or 3 hits he whole season. The summer between my 6th and 7th grade year I grew 7 inches and put on about 40 lbs. I moved to Minnesota from California that same summer. I entered school looking more like a 10th grader. Needless to say the coaches took notice. I had not played baseball in about 5 years but noticed the local kids riding their bikes with baseball equipment past my house every morning. I did not know any of them but said what the fuck and just followed them. It was summer league baseball season. It was about halfway through the season but in a small town like this everyone makes the team. The coach who later was my football and basketball high school coach took me to the outfield and was pitching to me to see how i hit. I do not know what the fuck happened but I hit the shit out of everything. Every third swing I was cracking homeruns. The rest of the players stopped what they were doing and stood in awe. Needless to say instant popularity. Instead of being the poor loner with no friends from druggy parents. I was now this long blond hair, blue eyes amazing cool athlete kid from California. Wow what a change.

      I saw right then what I could get out of athletics. I lived day and night to improve whatever sport I was doing at the time. Several seasons I was playing multiport sports. As I brushing my teeth at night I was doing calf raises. Me and my lifelong best friend whose dad was the coach gave us to the keys to the weight room. We were hooked. Are gym sucked really bad but it had what we needed to get bigger and stronger. I wish I knew then what I know now about fitness. Boy I wasted a lot of time back then doing soom dumb lifting. But I did learn that if I put in the time I got better. As a young athlete I thought there was no limit to my potential. I was so lucky that my best friend Joe was the second best freakish athlete I ever met. And I met thousand and thousand of Soldiers throughout my Army career. We made a great team. I had sickening work ethic and he was just a freak. I would push myself to the point of passing out just to keep up with him. So he in turn would have to push a little bit harder just to beat me. On the football field and members of the track team we combined for countless school records that still stand 20+ years later. I broke the varsity 300 meter hurdle record in the 7th grade. A record that had stood since 1979. Earlier in that year we began to get a lot of attention because our Jr high football team had went undefeated. This was a new era because we were the worst high school program in the state of Minnesota. We had never had a winning season in the history of our school. We would go several years between wins some years. During winter I also won a spot to the varsity wrestling team at the 152 lbs weight class. I got my ass kicked over and over. I was going against kids 17 and 18 years old because I was so big for a 12 year old. Our 8th grade year we went undefeated in football again and myself my buddy Joe and 2 other kids were brought up to practise with the high school team. The was unprecedented in the history of our school. But they saw that they had some young bad ass dudes coming up. During our 8th grade year me Joe and a 6 other boys won our conference track championship. We had several events like the 2 mile and the relays where we did not even have athletes in but we did so well in the events we did have athletes we ended up winning. This streak of winning our conference track meet with the same amount of boys continued for the 5 years. Me Joe and an absolute amazing jumper our friend Brian would take 1,2,3 in the long jump and triple jump. I would win the 100 and 300 meters hurdles, Brian would win the high jump and joe would win the 100 and 200 meter dash. We had a football lineman named Marty that would win or place really high in the shot and discus. We had a handful of others that would place in the middle of things like the 400 and 800. During the middle of our 8th grade year even though we were breaking varsity high school records our coach would allow us to compete in the Jr High meets against kids our age. So me and Joe decided to try the long jump for the first time. We bet our coach Mcdonalds that we could jump over 17 feet. Our school record at that time was a measly 19”6’ The coach thought there is no way we would jump that far in our first attempt with never doing the event before. Joe jumped 18”9’ and I jump low 18. Our coach was so shocked that he went and check the tape measure to make sure it was correct. We beat the other 12 and 13 year olds by a few feet. Joe continued to do well in the long jump. Jumping over 22 feet and going to the state championship. Brian broke our school record and jumped 7 foot 1 in the high jump, Won the state championship and went on to high jump in college. I was 2 inches from breaking the previous high jump record that I wanted so bad. But once Brian joined the team It was best for the team for me to move to another event to better get points during team competition. I ended with a career best of 6’2” at 14 years old. I really thought I had a chance to be an Olympic athlete maybe in the decathlon because I was really good at so many different events. Me and Joe found a book on Carl Lewis who had won 8 Olympic medals broke world records and went 10 years undefeated in the long jump. We noticed it had a chart on his jumping progress and we where actually had jumped further than he did at our age. Starting in the 7th grade until I graduated I won the coaches award for most dedicated athlete. I would stay after practice for hours running hurdles getting my timing. I was a big kid and not as fast as others but when it came to the hurdles I knew I could out work them and bet them when it came to being a better hurdler. I was able to win several MVP awards and broke several school records during my 6 year track career. Toward the end of my 12th grade year my coach came up to me after a track meet and shook my hand. He said congratulations you just broke the all time school record for points scored by one athlete.See Joe was a much better athlete but he took some time off during track and played baseball from time to time. He also did that in basketball and wrestling. Other athletes throughout are schools history were definitely better at certain events but none had been at such a high level since they were in the 7th grade and well rounded in so many different events. During my 12th grade year a few other good jumpers had came along from other schools which ended up moving into 3rd and 4th in the triple jump. pushed me down in the points. My track coach could not coach for shit but he was a great tactician. He had a hunch that I could throw the shotput do to my heavy lifts in the weight room. So during our last conference championship he took a gamble and put me in the shot put instead of the triple jump. He speculated that I could get 3rd or 4th in that event even though i never did it and get the few extra points we need to win the championship. Needless to say somehow I was able to throw 42 feet getting 3rd place behind my teammate Marty to clinch the points win for a team victory.

      Even though I was crazy dedicated to track and dreamed for a long time to go to the Olympics. But even a chance of competing in college started to fade. My problem was not that of hard work or even ability but overall physics. My main focus was football, that was my life. So I lived in the weightroom and really did track because i was good at it and to get faster and more athletic for football. All the work I put into the weight room before school every morning over the past 7 years had build me up to 225 lbs of solid muscle. My weight even though muscle really made it difficult to throw my body through the air in the long and triple jump or sprint at elite levels in the hurdles. I was a fullback and linebacker so my job on the football field was to be a human battering ram and wreck mother fuckers. Yes speed helps but size and strength where my focus. So needless to say my dedication to becoming a great football player limited how great of track athlete I could've been. I still did amazing things but really wonder how far I could have gone. Track is mainly a sport that you are born with 90% of your ability, that's just how speed and jumping work. There are countless super fast world class athletes that never once stepped foot onto a track or even trained it. You're just born fast or you're not. I had some ability but not that of super freaks like Bo Jackson who possed world class speed at 225 lbs.

      WInter time in Minnisota is down right brutal fuckkkkk. Cold as it gets anywhere. Especially for someone who grew up in California. But you stay active and you get use to it. During winters I was a busy mother fucker. Although I wrestled on the varsity team starting at 12 and had a shit ton of potential I really didn't like it. I liked basket ball much more. I was a 6 foot 12 year old so I played both. Never really had much success but had a lot of fun. I was a hell of a rebounder and defender. I could pass the sit out of the ball but never developed a shot and never grew any taller either. Wrestling I went at half hearted and did not amount to much. We did have a great team and many of my classmates went on to compete and win the state championship and on to college.

      It was amazing how many college level athletes our class produced across all sports. Maybe more than all in are school’s history combined. We are talking about a graduating class of 54 kids with about 15 going on to play college sports. We really dominated our conference in most sports from our 9th grade year until we graduated. I also joined a men's bar league volleyball team starting at the age of 12 with my step dad and step cousin Carl. Both are step dads played on the team. No one complained about it when we were younger but as we got a few years older we absolutely dominated. They then tried to get us kicked out of the league because it was a bar sponsored team and we were not 21. Didn't work and we continued to play until I left to the Army. I was lucky to be able to get back into Volleyball for severals years later in my Army career.

      Now to my true all time love football. Man this sport was created for me I felt. Like gladiators stepping into the coliseum. The rush of hearing that crowd. Hitting someone so hard you feel the air leave their lungs as they go limp. The physical and mental nature of the game. It was to me like a chess match played with gladiators. In Jr High it was almost not fair. As a linebacker I would average around 15 tackles a game and a few sacs. I was so much faster other than Joe and bigger and way stronger than any of the other kids on the field. I would be chasing the ball carriers down and shove my own team mates out of the way because they were in the way and to slow. I wrecked shit on the defencive side. But on offence because I was so big they put me as a guard. But when I started breaking school records in track they switched me to fullback in the 9th grade. Me at fullback leading the way and Joe at running back meant bad new for our competition. Like I said our school had never had a winning season in our schools history and sometimes would go years without a single win. That quickly changed. During our freshman year we went 5 and 5 that was 4 more wins then we had in the past 3 years combined. As freshmen we didn't take over games but we played big roles in this success. We were still only 14 and 15 years old. Me and Joe continued to wake up at 5 am every morning and hit the weights before school. We did not have a dedicated lifting program and did very little organized lifting during the sessions. But me and Joe were dedicated. We worked our bench press up to 310 for me and 350 for Joe. Even though he was only 175 he was a freak athlete. I was able to hang with him and beat him the legs though. We did not have a squat rack but we had a 45 degree leg press machine. We ended up building it up until we ran out of weights to add on, over 800lbs. I later on in my Army career got this up to 1200 lbs during my times as a powerlifter.

      Joe ended up breaking our single season and career rushing records. As a team our senior year we rushed for over 3500 yards and broke the all time school record that still stands today. We ended our football career with a 42-11 record from Jr High and varsity combined. That's more wins than our school accumulated through it’s entire history combined. Joe turned down a division 1 scholarship to the University of Minnesota and Ohio State to follow his highschool girl friend to a small division 2 school. What a dumbass. I followed him and dreamed of us kickass just as we did in highschool. We acually where kicking as as two freshman the summer before our first year of college. The coaches started to take notice and would place up against the starting team every chance they had to see how we would do. We won our fair share. Joe was by far the best athlete this school had ever had. I was a 230lb really strong and fast for my size young guy that would out work anyone on the field. But are dreams of dominating the college level and move on to the pros blew up on the same weekend. I had gotten caught underage drinking at a back to school party the weekend before school started then the very next weekend I was caught naked in a female dorm room drunk again. I did not get any criminal charges but I was already on probation from the week prior. I got kicked out the dorms and off the football team. My career was over before it ever began. All those years of hard work and dreams shatters over a few beers and chasing girls. Was a real kick to the balls. Joe broke up with his girlfriend and turned to drugs dropped out of school and never competed in any future athletics. What a waste. To this day he is still a 40 year old freak athlete with no training at all. Me on the other hand was able to continue in athletics throughout my military career. I was able to both coach and play flag football which wasn't the same thing but still really fun. I continued to play volleyball and even was on a team that won the Korean championship and went on to compete for the Asian championship in Japan. I stumbled into rugby while attending a detective school in St Louis. We went on to get second in 7’s Nationals. I continued to coach football and was able to get a coaching job for Wurzburg High School in Germany while stationed there. I just so happened to be doing undercover narcotics work during this time so I made my own schedule and could free up time to coach. The next year I met several guys that I was playing poker with and we got this crazy idea to create an American football team. They had a league but what a huge undertaking to find players, get equipment, find a field and become an actual team. We worked our ass of recruiting any and all guys we thought would do good at football. I had the fortunate access to the americans being in the army. But we were limited to 5 Americans on the team and only 2 on the field at a time. We got German SWAT guys. Ex soccer players and even and ex German Olympic sprinter. Unfortunately he only had one play and injured his knee. We trained up the first year then magic struck. The Army base in Wurzburg was closing. They were not going to spend the money to ship all the Highschool equipment back to the US. So I had free reign over all equipment we could ever want. We had the nicest stuff out of all the pro teams in Germany. The first home game in the small town of Albertshofen was a sell out crowd and the largest sporting event in the town history. The Mayor came out to do the coin flip and they had 2 radio stations covering the event. We went 7 wins and 1 loss and won the championship. Such a dream to be part of that. To continue to fulfill my football passion and coach a professional team. Being at the right place at the right time.

      As I got older I started to test myself and competed in several sprint and olympic distance triathlons. I really enjoyed the suffering and training for the 3 different elements. The bike, swim and run. I quickly found my body could not hold up to all the miles of training needed to become competitive.

      Then during my times deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan I really got back into weight lifting. I started to compete in powerlifting and was able to amass some pretty impressive numbers. In 2009 before I got shot, I obtained a 405 lbs bench press a 565 lbs squat and 585 lbs deadlift. Then over the next 4 years I was shot once and blown up twice leading me to have 8 surgeries and spending almost an entire year in a wheelchair.

      Again football reentered my life. I heard that they had a professional American football league in Korea. WTF?? I found the coach told him my resume and he hired me as the defensive coordinator. The owner was a canadian ex professional agent. I meet some great guys and had a lot of fun. We again won our championship but it did not seem as fulfilling as in Germany because this team was already established as a great team and I was not part of creating it like I was in Germany.

      During my rehabilitation I found Crossfit. OMG what a game changer. To this point in my athletic career there had only been 2 types of training long distance marathon type running and weightlifting body building style. What an eye opening and refreshing method of training. I could talk about Crossfit for days. I completely encompassed myself in crossfit to this day I have watched over 7000 crossfit videos on their home page. The style of training was something I was built for and had trained for my whole life. A combination of everything. Lifting heavy, running far, gymnastics and just over all being able to endure pain like I never felt before and being able to keep going. This sport was made for me. Again like so many times in my life I was at the right place at the right time. Crossfit was just starting in Korea and in Asia in general. They only had 3 crossfit gyms in the entire country now they have over 200. They just completed a gym on the Army base in Seoul and my Journey began. I lived Crossfit and became fitter than I ever had been before. I could lift more lift longer run harder and push myself to the limits. To fill this way after training my whole life and now being in my mids 30’s was amazing. Was like a new beginning to my fitness career. I started coaching others and spreading the news about crossfit. We had a great community of both Soldiers and Koreans. I found myself with this new family of great people and we found ourself spending all our time together in and out of the gym. We were the godfathers of the Crossfit movement in Korea. We were so lucky to find that the Second level of competition to the Crossfit world championship was being held in Seoul for the Asian Qualifier. This was perfect timing for me. Then I got the news that I would be traveling with the United Nations Commander to a Middle East War Zone. I knew this would interrupt my training but I still would try to compete. Unfortunately our vehicle took a bomb and my right foot got destroyed. So the next year we put a team together and competed in the team competition. We didn't think we had a chance because the Australian regional was combined with the Asian regional, and damn them Aussies where bad ass. We ended up qualifying in 10th place among all the teams in Asia and got to travel to the regionals. We got our asses kicked but hey we made it. I coached that team and was unable to compete but I enjoyed every minute.

      My Army career was reaching its 20 year mark and I new I would be getting out. I loved Crossfit and was a certified coach. I decided I wanted to stay in Korea instead of moving back to the US. I had spent 15 of the past 20 years outside the US and never really felt like going back. I dropped a resume for a Crossfit gym located on one of the nicest beaches in the South tip of South Korea. I was lucky enough to get the job and again for the countless time in my life I was living a dream. Working on a beach training Crossfit. Things didn't eld well with the Gym closing from a flood and breaking up with my Korean Girlfriend of two years. So I gave away ALL my stuff packed 1 backpack bought a flight to the Philippines and left the next day. On to the next chapter of my life.

      The Philippines O the Philippines

      So after my clarifying moment upon retirement from the Army, I gave away all my stuff packed one bag and booked a flight the next day to the Philippines.
      Once I landed in Cebu I googled hostel and found one. Upon arrival I knew I had picked the right place. Lee Village hostel is a Mecca for backpackers coming to the Philippines. Every day dozens and dozens come and go. People from all over the world. I spent many a day and night just sitting and exchanging amazing stories with these people. educated, young, adventurous, open minded individuals. I ended up living there for 4 months. The whole time I did not run into many Americans. Guess we still haven't figured it out yet. See you can travel Asia for 6 months for the same price you bought that stupid overly large TV for. Yeah yeah I I know, I had the 52” but damn I had to get the knew 74. I been there. Now I do not even own a TV. So after 4 months it was time to get out of the city. I had traveled a few days here and there but the city was big, loud and noisy. I met one of the nicest most amazing person I have ever met and traveled with her and a group of 14 others to the small surfing island called Siargao. OMG what an amazing place. The community is made up off backpackers who found the place and decided to stay or ones that changed their lives so they can come back and stay. It has one of the best Surf breaks in all of Asia. They even have a pro surf competition there every year. It is a small surf town of a few hundred. It has an amazing dynamic and a really laid back surfing culture of party hard, surf hard. It does not get your normal backpacker or weekend vacationers like a place like Boracay. I met one of the most interesting guys I had ever met while staying in Cebu city. He created an online video game at the age of 17 and never had to work again. He has since grown is wealth to over $50,000,00 at the young age of 27. Not only that but he’s is about 6’5” and looks like a damn model. But you would never know he is rich. Laid back super intelligent guy. It was incredible to listen to him destroy highly educated people in debates on all subject. We started calling him Google because of the high level knowledge he possessed on such a variety of subject. But anyway he ended up joining me in Siargao and we rented this amazing 3 story house with an amazing swimming pool. It did not take long for us to start throwing pool parties. In Siargao every night of the week a specific bar host a party. So each night it is a different location and everyone goes there. Wednesdays did not have a party spot so we thought what the hell and threw a pool party. I’m talking about epic, legendary type shit you see on TV. 50 girls dancing and playing in the pool in bikinis, A DJ and live band, fire twirlers and of course free alcohol. We would buy about 20 cases of 24 bottle beer and then we turned our water dispenser into a pre mixed rum and coach machine. The local bar owners did like the idea because we were giving away more alcohol in 1 night then they would sell all week. They soon got on board and would close their establishment and bring all there girl staff to join in on the fun. We ended up having to do facebook invite only because by the 3rd week we had over 200 people and it was getting out of control. So we hired a guard to stand at the gate and only let in those with an invite.
      Right before leaving for Siargao I meet this wonderful lady named Cyrem. She was this 25 year old manager of the sport bar Time Out I would go to meet other Expats and watch American football. We had a few conversation and I was dating one of the other girls that worked there at the time. But I would sit and watch how Cyrem would carry her self. She acted different then all the others. I need to explain something about the Philippines and how the economics of the country play into the culture. The average wage in Cebu city is about 6 to 7 dollars A DAY!! Even here that is survival money. You can never save to start a business or better your life. So it is accepted and expected normality for young good looking females to hook up with an old expat and in turn change the financial future of their family. They see their friends, sister, aunts do it. Meet and old foreigner and now they live the good life. The guy might give their family money. Send her younger sister or brother to college. You see it everywhere. And this is a big draw for old expats to come here. Me being only 38 in shape fairly good looking guy actually worked against me here because I was seen as someone who would be a “player” and not serious so they would go for the older guys even if they had less money. So I would see the bar girls running behind the male guest treating them like kings hoping to date one and live a new life. But Cyrem was nothing like that. She was amazingly gorgeous, with a body to die for. But she just did her job running the bar. Not arrogant in anyway but you could see she was not interested in finding a guy to take care of here. This attracted me so much to her. In the bar one night all the other bar staff and guest left to go get food and it left just me and her there. We talk for several hours and played Jenga. I knew then that this was “the girl”. We went to the movies the next day and then I left to go to Siargao. While in Siargao I dated several girls but keep thinking about Cyrem. We continued to chat and I thought what the hell come visit. So she did and ended up living with me for several months. I quickly found out that Siargao was not the ideal situation to get to know someone though. Every night was a party and Surfing during the day. Things didn't go well and she ended up moving back to where her parents lived in Moalboal. I always knew I fucked that one up. She was the one that got away. After another month I knew I had to get that girl back. Even if it meant leaving my paradise behind. I talked to her and told her I would be moving back to Cebu City and she should come back and we could try again. But this time like normal. I would pick her up after her work and we would go eat. Go on a few dates a week like normal couples getting to know each other. So we started to look for accommodation for her and separate for me. Then we just destroyed the previous plan and decided to get a place together. Neither of us was in love with the idea of living in the city though. So after a little discussion we decided on Moalboal. Moalboal is this nice small dive town in the south part of Cebu Island. Her aunt who lived in the US for the past 20+ years had an amazing 4 bedroom 3 bathroom house that she had build but decided she was not returning back to the Philippines. I rented the house for a whopping $280 a month. Yup thats right $280. Moalboal is a nice place with one of the best beaches in Cebu and a mass backpacker and dive industry. But I started to get bored. It was just me and Cyrem in this massive house. We thought of the idea of buying some used motor bikes and renting them out. Then the idea came up to turn the house into a private rental and hostel type hotel. This was an amazing idea. I loved the time I lived in the hostel in Cebu city and we had more than enough room. So over the next few months we bought beds, aircon units, hot water heaters and all the things to make the transformation. We put up a sign and waited. It was slow going at first. Just word of mouth bookings. I was getting so bored I would travel to Cebu city for 3 days periods to train at a Crossfit gym and then drive back. Then I posted online at the travel web sites and BOOM! Now we have guest every day and sometimes are fully booked. It keeps us busy and brings in some extra revenue. I am currently buying the land owned by Cyrus aunt across the street from our house and we plan to build a bigger hostel/hotel and bar. Things are amazing now but I am still missing something. I have always been a gamer, and competed at things my whole life. We had a good workout routine going. Running 3 miles to the beach and then swimming and doing workouts on the beach. I built some sand bag and pulling sleds here. There is also a 1970’s style gym in the town that we go to few times a week. Trying to get consistent and live a happier life all around. We plan to get these 2 businesses in full swing then hire people to run them so we can travel around some other parts of Asia and take a visit back to the US. The Philippines is amazing an the ideal place to retire for foreigners.

      I was doing some detective training in St Louis and ran across the movie Rounders
      at my Hotel movie selection. What a great movie. After watching the movie I hopped online to learn the game. After 30 minutes I hopped in my rental car and drove to Harrah's Casino. I bought $200 worth and sat down at th 1-2 table. I was a detective in the Military at this time and really excelled at interrogations. I studied, went to tons of schools, even the FBI interrogation course to be the best detective in the Army. I absolutely loved it. You against them, a battle of the minds. I had a 2 years stretch while stationed at Ft Sam Houston where I maintained above 90% confession rate. Now this is not waterboarding or anything of th such. If you read my other parts of my blog you will see that I had an extremely diverse upbringing and with my military training, I have an uncanny ability to read people. This had served me well over the years in live poker games. I played played a tight aggressive game and walked away with $1100 my first time at the tables. But that was then. It is a whole new game now. When I got back home from my school, I got online at Party Poker and played the free games for awhile. I stated a home game with the neighbors that grew and grew. We had an amazing front yard that connect 4 different houses. All the neighbors would bring there kids, we would start barbaquing about noon and then play $5.00 tourneys all day until early morning. Man I made a killing. We then discovered this thing called Bar Poker. It was a amiture poker league throughout Texas that dozens of bars in all the major cities were connected with. Every night of the week different bars would hold free pokers tournys where you could win trophies, t shirts or bar tabs. There would be 2 tourneys a night and would last from about 6 pm to midnight or so. Your finishing place would then be entered on the website and you accumulated points throughout the month and year. At the end of each month they would invite the top 200 or s players for that month throughout the state for tournaments with bigger prizes. At the end of the year they would take the top 200 or so and invite them for the yearly championship for a trip to the WSOP. I was playing these as much as I could depending on my
  • 6 replies
    • Rains7
      Joined: 21.04.2010 Posts: 242
      man that was a solid read, but i dont regret a second of it!!!
      honestly, i skipped the whole part about sports, as i do not have that much clue about football (not really popular in my country), but the rest was really interesting!

      GL with everything you wanna do :f_drink:

      edit: added you on the community tool - would really love and be interested in asking you some questions if that is ok
      Also, it seems there is a cap on signs you are allowed to use in just one entry, as this is probably not the end to the whole story.
    • VaskataBuci
      Joined: 08.08.2011 Posts: 2,440
      Amazing read, waiting to be continued!

      Good luck!
    • SDK1987
      Joined: 12.11.2008 Posts: 39,320
      Hello John

      Welcome on the PokerStrategy forum :welcome:

      It’s nice to see that you started a blog.

      Don't forget to register for our Get Rich or Die Tryin' - The Bankroll Challenge - Opt-in now! promotion.

      It looks like your still a basic member and then you can use 1 or more of our free money offers on poker rooms you don’t have an account yet. If you are bronze member you can post pictures without help.

      Further I wish you a pleasant stay on our forum and good luck with improving your game :gl:

      Best regards,
    • metalmonkey80
      Joined: 15.08.2013 Posts: 2,778
      Hi John,

      Welcome to :f_drink:
      I believe you are among the top of the list with your intro blog length. :f_thumbsup:
      What ever your skill level has lots of great articles and forums to help you make the most of your game.
      A good place to start is in the strategy section 'poker for beginners' found here also host a great video tutorial section for many different games and strategies found here
      Though out the year there are many challenges where you can win status upgrades and other prizes.
      There is also a TaF (Tell a Friend) promotion which will reward you money to help build your bank roll or buy tools with!

      And I look forward to reading future posts and successes.

      If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask.
      Good luck at the tables.


    • Lazza61
      Joined: 23.03.2011 Posts: 11,030
      Hey John,

      I have to say, "That is the most epic 1st post in the history of the World, maybe even the Universe". I have no doubt that you will keep us entertained. :f_thumbsup:

      Good Luck :gl:

    • CypherPrimes
      Joined: 23.11.2016 Posts: 2
      I tried to put read more tabs but I think I messed it up. Ask any questions bro. Thanks for the reply