A Visit to the Past with Howard Lederer II

Continuing from yesterday. It’s interesting that I became involved with so many people in this chain of creating The Professor. Most of my emails and conversations were with Rick. I saw Howard Lederer when I went to a ‘shoot’ location and the cameras were ready to roll. But there were other people involved in the production away from the videos and poker fantasy camps.

My emails with Rick Bierman total around 240; when we met, I instantly liked him and his enthusiasm. He came to Bellagio one night before my shift started and we sat in an employees’ only section off the sportsbook for our initial meet. Everything moved forward from there.

I was asked to provide a couple of females for the first shoot. And I did. Then I found out that Rick had two males and I needed two females for a morning shoot and four more players for an afternoon shoot. We had an email discussion about the chicks in Vegas and plastic boobs, my two females were not in that category. Rick seemed OK with it, yet when we showed up, the director thought ‘some’ of the players were not the type that the public would die to watch in an instructional video, so the director called a woman he knew (I have my idea of how he knew her). A few on my chosen team were deemed not fit for the ‘TV’ category so…

We had a young, good looking, healthy buck that played a lot at Bellagio at the time, Tony, he was part of the team I chose and the director really liked him for a complement to the woman he had called. It’s funny now, I have those videos but haven’t thought about them in so long I would have to go watch them to get back in the swing of it.

I had to wear a white tuxedo shirt and tie and we were in a small studio which I’m sure it’s original purpose was porn shoots. Dark drapes every where, small quarters, and a fkng table that had a concrete surface on it. I kid you not! It was hard, slick, and ridiculous, even though it was covered with felt. I chided Rick about making me look like an idiot because I couldn’t even get a finger under the edge of the cards to life them to shuffle the deck.

In a way, it was funny, he simply had no idea.

While all of this was transpiring, I had OD’d on tomatoes during the last week. I have some weird reaction to ascorbic acid. When I get too much, my left eyelid always gets a red puff to it and then it drops down under my eye, runs down the left cheek to my jaw line and under my chin. If you don’t know me, you wouldn’t notice it. To me it feels like I have a plaster cast on my face and it has a weird itch, once you start scratching it, you can’t stop because it’s a deep down, inside type of itch. There’s no broken skin rash or anything. I felt like my face was going to explode all the time I sat at my hard-surfaced dealer table, in my prim white shirt, with the frigging heat of hell coming from the lights.

Present: I just put in the first DVD that was made, Howard starts it out by doing a ‘fright night shuffle.’ The first instructional video was really for a person that had no clue on how to set up a home game or play poker – “Secrets of No Limit Hold’em” – and if you hurry, there are still a few at amazon.com. If you happen to watch the video, Jennine is in the 2s – the one that was called in by the director.

My cute little friend Sylvia Hart and my hiking buddy Dan Burch are in the final four – along with Tony and Jennine. Howard has been in the dealer box explaining the action, what hand is a good gamble, the betting and side-pots and when it gets down to four handed, it’s Jon Bierman (Rick’s brother), Steve (an attorney which I see no reason to list his last name or the law group he worked with), Tony, and Jennine. And my copy of that DVD is autographed by Howard. Big deal, right? Of course it is you dipshit! Think about it. Back to the past.

The next video was ‘More Secrets of No-Limit Hold’em’ and I put a little more searching into ‘hot bodies’ for the poker game that would make a director happy. I got lucky, or the taping crew got lucky, depends on your POV. I wasn’t needed for a lot of the video as Howard was once again in the dealer’s box.

The funny part of the whole video is that I had invited Jim and Marlene and asked them to bring friends. One of their friends was in the video, he was visiting from New York or somewhere, but the burn notice is that he had told his girlfriend/wife/friends that he was going somewhere on business…but it wasn’t Vegas. So why did he agree to be in the video? Go figure!

I attended a Poker Fantasy Camp at the Palms in September of 2004, it was part of Howard’s Professorship. Somewhere in external hard drives I have pictures of this event.

This email was from Howard’s All-in address.

——– Original Message ——–
Subject: Howard & Annie’s Invitation
Date: 3 Nov 2005 05:31:53 -0600
From: howard@allinenterprises.com
To: geenen@pokerworks.com

It’s easier than ever to join us…
but, time is running out!
The last poker fantasy Camp of 2005 is easier to attend than you might think!

Annie and Howard’s invitation to check out this Fantasy Camp…

Howard Lederer and Annie Duke are holding a Poker Fantasy/Reality Camp on December 1-4, 2005 at the Palms Casino in Las Vegas, see the details at: www.allincamp.com.

Here’s your chance to spend four days rubbing elbows with poker greats like Howard, Annie, Marcel Luske, Freddie Deeb, Andy Bloch, Huck Seed, Mark Gracz, David Williams and Amir Vahedi. The Camp also includes 6 hours of poker seminars, instructional Sit N Gos, a banquet at the Rio and two FREEROLL tournaments with $100,000 in prize money.

By visiting the web site, you’ll find ways to win a seat in this camp, valued at $4,000.00, by just signing up at one of the many satellite tournament opportunities you’ll find at www.allincamp.com.

Better yet, we’ll even provide you with FREE online lessons penned by the “Pros” so you can sharpen your game prior to attending the Fantasy Camp. Visit our site and help yourself to our FREE poker lessons!

Pick up your FREE lessons, sign up for one of the many tournaments where you can win a seat in the Camp, and check out the agenda for the fun filled, information packed seminars and poker learning experience.

See how easy it could be to walk away with a big share of the $100,000.00

We really would like to see you there, so we are making it easier than ever!

CLICK HERE to get started

You are receiving this promotion because you oped to do so, either through us, or one of our partners. All in Camp never sends unsolicited email. If you feel that you received this in error or are not interested in receiving future offers, please unsubscribe below, or contact us via regular mail at:
Horizons/All in Camp
W62 N228 Washington Ave.
Cedarburg, WI 53012

UNSUBSCRIBE

Horizons/All in Camp Affiliates are not responsible for third party offers, services or products and makes no representations or warranties regarding them.

….

There were affiliate programs through allinenterprises.com and through Full Tilt Poker – I have no idea how the Full Tilt Poker one tied into the Professorship but I had options to help promote Howard. I worked on them. I even made a few bucks from people signing up.

When Annie Duke came into the picture, Ultimate Bet was involved:

On 10/24/2005 12:49 PM, howard@allinenterprises.com wrote:
> A $4,000.00 value for just $109.00???
>
> Would you like to make your poker fantasy a reality? It is easier than you think!
>
> Howard Lederer and Annie Duke are holding a Poker Fantasy/Reality Camp on December 1-4, 2005 at the Palms Casino in Las Vegas, www.allincamp.com.
>
> Here you can spend four days rubbing elbows with poker greats like Howard, Annie, Marcel Luske, Freddie Deeb, Andy Bloch, Huck Seed, Mark Grascz, David Williams and Amir Vahedi. The Camp also includes 6 hours of poker seminars, instructional Sit N Gos, a banquet at the Rio and two FREEROLL tournaments with $100,000 in prize money.
>
> The cost of the camp is $4,000, including airfare and a 3 night stay at the Palms, all included in your Ultimate bet promotion! However, for a limited time, you can win a seat at the Camp by playing in satellite tournaments at Ultimate Bet. They will even throw in airfare and travel money just to make sure that the Camp doesn’t cost you one penny.
>
> Just sign-up at Ultimate Bet, enter daily satellite tournaments and for as little as $109 you could end up spending four of the most outrageous days of your poker life at Howard and Annie’s Fantasy Camp!
>
> CLICK HERE to get started
>
> You are receiving this promotion because you oped to do so, either through us, or one of our partners. All in Camp never sends unsolicited email. If you feel that you received this in error or are not interested in receiving future offers, please unsubscribe below, or contact us via regular mail at:
> Horizons/All in Camp
> W62 N228 Washington Ave.
> Cedarburg, WI 53012
>
> UNSUBSCRIBE
>
> Horizons/All in Camp Affiliates are not responsible for third party offers, services or products and makes no representations or warranties regarding them.

….

Of course it’s all gone, kaput, the DVDs are still around but all of the links load to ‘can’t find’ – it’s just a memory. This is the last email I received from Rick:

On 1/19/2006 12:34 PM, rick@allinenterprises.com wrote:
>
> Linda,
>
> Since I didn’t hear from you, I found another dealer. I apologize for the short notice, but I am dealing with television people.
>
>
> Rick
>
> From: rick@allinenterprises.com [mailto:rick@allinenterprises.com]
> Sent: Wednesday, January 18, 2006 12:18 PM
> To: ‘Linda Geenen (geenen@pokerworks.com)’
> Cc: ‘xxxx xxxx, SportsHD’
> Subject: NATPE Convention
>
>
> Linda,
>
> SportsHD is a high definition television production company that will be filming our European Fantasy Camp. SportsHD will be attending the NATPE convention in Las Vegas (Mandalay Convention Center) and will be offering the European Fantasy Camp show to television networks. In order to promote the Fantasy Camp Show to television networks, Howard will be playing poker from 3:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. on January 25 at the SportsHD booth. We need a dealer and chips and I was wondering if you would be interested in dealing for those 3 hours, and if not, if you could refer me to someone who would be interested.
>
> Rick

….

I was out, a new dealer was in, the affiliate business kind of went to hell, everyone and their dog started making poker instructional videos. I’ve searched and searched for the information I received – can’t find it but I know I didn’t dream it. The last word I heard was that Rick Bierman had absconded with a batch of money that belonged in the allinenterprises fund – like stole it and ran away with it, never to be heard from again.

And now allinenterprises.com loads to a site far off the beaten path of professors and poker but the email address listed if you have any questions or concerns is: rick@allin-enterprises.com. Which makes me go ‘Umnhhhhh’ WTF?

And the Professor is in really hot water.

About Linda R. Geenen

The easiest way to begin is to start at the beginning. But where is that? At what point does one suddenly decide they are going to spend the rest of their life involved in the intricate art of the dance? What is the art of the dance? A game about people - played with a deck of cards. Poker! I stepped into the poker world in 1980 in Missoula, Montana. I didn't know anything about poker, couldn't tell you what the difference was between a bet and raise, or if a straight beat a flush. I had three boys to feed, needed a job and a dealing spot was open in one of the local bars. I played my first hand of poker in a 5 Card Stud game (with the help of one of my bosses) and that was it! I was hooked. I lived, breathed, slept, dreamed, ate, and talked poker. I eventually ran my own games (licensed by the County) in several different bars in Missoula, and at one point, managed the games in the bar where I started my first dealing job. In 1987 I traveled from Montana to Nevada to deal major poker tournaments, returning to Montana at the end of each one. In 1989, I opened The Mirage – along with 6,400 other people. In 1993, I moved to Gulfport, Mississippi, and opened Grand Casinos Poker Room, returning a year later to Las Vegas and The Mirage. In 1998 I opened Bellagio - along with over 9,000 other employees. In 2003, I dealt the final table of the Aruba Ultimate Bet Poker Classic event. Hey…I’m on TV! I had the privilege of being chosen as the dealer in the Howard Lederer videos that have been released on No Limit Holdem. I play poker on a regular basis and I deal to every name brand player that is still above ground and breathing air, the elite, the freaks, the ne’er do wells, the rich, the poor, the illiterate, the educated, the beautiful, the ugly, the superstitious, the rational, the sane, and the insane. Perhaps I am the one that is insane but if I am, I fit right into the game plan. Five nights a week I walk into the greatest, social melting pot known to mankind. I no longer dream about it but the art of the dance is prevalent in everything I do - see you there!
This entry was posted in Dear Diary and tagged , , | 4 Comments

4 Responses to A Visit to the Past with Howard Lederer II

  1. ten mile says:

    It is amazing, really, how your writing voice changes when you write contemporarily, as opposed to personal “in the past”. It doesn’t make a great deal of difference, however. The story was interesting. More, please.

  2. I’m sure you’re right. Being there and living it in the present brings a lot more detail to mind – plus emotion. The past is more telling a story that happened to someone else.

  3. Yeah, it’s going to be interesting to see how the whole thing plays out. With our court system, we might not live long enough to see the end. :-( I just wish it was all over…I’m sure they do too.

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