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I Was Dealt a Bad Hand

The definition is as follows: “Two cards, known as hole cards, are dealt face down to each player, and then five community cards are dealt face up in three stages. The stages consist of a series of three cards (“the flop”), later an additional single card (“the turn”), and a final card (“the river”). Each player seeks the best five card poker hand from any combination of the seven cards of the five community cards and their two hole cards. Players have betting options to check, call, raise, or fold. Rounds of betting take place before the flop is dealt and after each subsequent deal. The player who has the best hand and has not folded by the end of all betting rounds wins all of the money bet for the hand, known as the pot.”

The game? Texas Hold’em.

I have enjoyed Texas Hold’em ever since the 2003 World Series of Poker when Chris Moneymaker (yes, that is his last name) won the tournament. He was so enjoyable to watch and he revolutionized the event to what it is today. I loved playing Hold’em online, in person, anywhere really. And I was somehow good at the game too. At least, in the past few days, I have randomly been told that I was good at it. Maybe because I love numbers. Maybe because I like to win some money every now and then. Or maybe because I play in a very quiet, safe, and slow manner. Either way, as long as I have one chip left, I am still alive in the game – and in real life.

That is why I wanted to write this post.

In life, I was dealt a bad hand. I was dealt a 2-7 off-suit. This is the (statistically speaking) worst possible hand to be dealt. This is because your chance of winning with a flush is next to impossible. Also, these two cards are too separated to achieve a straight. All in all, I was dealt a 2-7 off-suit. But I am still at the table.

That does not mean I give up. Am I happy with those cards? Of course not. But I still have chips in front of me. I am not out yet. Am I able to buy expensive toys or throw a significant amount of additional funds towards my student loans? Not really. But do you know what I am able to do? I am able to wake up in the morning next to my beautiful wife. I am able to work full weeks (which was nearly impossible a year ago). I am able to go and hang out with friends on the weekends. In my eyes, that 2-7 off-suit has still kept me alive with one chip.

Now, let us put the camera on you. If you are reading this, then you are still above the ground, meaning you still have at least one chip left. You are still alive. Of course you can complain about only having one chip, or a few chips left. It is natural to do so. I do it all the time. But that is still more than the spectators around you. Be thankful and enjoy your life right now – today.

Take life slow. You cannot win with the first hand dealt (unless you win the lottery or something. In that case, you won on the first hand dealt). Sometimes you will get the pair of Aces, and sometimes you will get the 2-7 off-suit.

However, keep those bluffs on the card table.

Maybe you were dealt a 2-7 off-suit. But in my eyes, until I lose all my chips, I have a pair of Aces.

I was dealt a 2-7 off-suit, and look what I turned that hand into.


  1. Michelle Michelle

    No matter what cards you are dealt, you have made the best possible hand and made the best of what you were given, god bless❤️

  2. Dean Salah Dean Salah

    Paul this, like all your journal entries are amazingly inspirational and I look forward to your writings!! You know so many in this community and beyond have pulled for you and love watching you turn that 2-7 hand into a winner!! Now if only you can pull that off in your next tourney at the St Peters Club😜😜 love ya kid!!

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