With World Championships festivities kicking off in one week, I thought now would be a good time to help disseminate last-minute tips to help those competing in the LCQ and main event. But rather than remind players to get a good night’s sleep and eat breakfast, as many writers have done before, I thought I’d delve into some of the lesser-known items to pack that are critical for tournament success.
Not because the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool will be blinding your eyes at high noon, but because it is hard to keep a stern poker face for two days straight. And I recommend not just any sunglasses. In commemoration of the 10-year anniversary of his World Series of Poker Main Event win, we need to channel the transcendent powers of Greg “Fossilman” Raymer:
The reptilian shades project the perfect combo of confidence and confusion. Your opponents won’t know what to make of you. The psychological edge is yours.
2. Penny Sleeves
While you want to strike fear and uncertainty into your opponents, you also do not want to overextend your prowess. There is no better way to instill false confidence into the opposition than by outfitting your deck with penny sleeves. A rubber band in lieu of a deck box would be a nice touch too. Heck, you could even play without sleeves, as one forward-thinking PokéDad did back in ’06!
One casual misplay can be the difference between winning and losing, especially at a high-level event like Worlds. Penny sleeves shout “Take it easy on me.”
3. 5-Hour Energy
Actually, why stop at 5-Hour Energy? Last year the Masters Saturday session lasted from 10 AM until midnight. And the grinder is just that; a grind! Five hours of energy will not be good enough. An event as momentous as the World Championships calls for:
With no planned lunch or dinner breaks, it is crucial that you are able to maintain hyper-focus while everyone around you gradually succumbs to hunger and fatigue. And by luck of immaculate juxtaposition, you are sure to crash shortly after the high, eliminating the temptation to stay up late, and you’ll wake refreshed, ready to rock top cut the next morning!
4. Foam Finger
Ruling disputes are more likely to occur during the World Championships than any other tournament of the year because of language barriers that are bound to arise. With 50-minute best-of-three Swiss rounds, time is of the essence and you cannot afford to lose even a precious few seconds attempting to gain a judge’s attention.
A foam finger is the perfect solution to the relative invisibility of a naked hand; any judge should immediately see your huge mitt and resolve issues in a punctual manner. Plus, on the off chance you happen to get knocked out of the tournament, your foam finger will double as a cheering device.
5. Adult Diapers
What is more important to you? Answering the call of nature, or answering the call to become a WORLD CHAMPION? Do not let a weak bladder prevent you from achieving greatness. Did you know that if you take a bathroom break in the middle of a match, you automatically LOSE if the series goes to time? I have witnessed many a competitor writhe in intestinal discomfort, attempting to gut out a match as their knowing opponent maliciously weans the clock. “Time.” A mad dash to the nearest restroom ensues. The battle might have been won, but it is feared not the war.
This coming weekend, I have a good feeling the age-old question will finally be answered:
Note: This article is not entirely serious.