This was the weekend we turned the clocks ahead, about a month earlier than years past. Normally I’ll feel a little tired after losing an hour, but this weekend was so packed with fun stuff and lack of sleep that I’m way more exhausted than usual.

Friday I took a half day and headed down to The Borgata with the whole gang, eight of us in total. Twoin, Kat and I made our way down early and grabbed dinner at Specchio because we were jonesing for their agnolotti with foie gras cognac cream sauce. We started with a couple of unremarkable apps- a cold seafood app and a plate of braseola. I ordered an Italian syrah, the only one in our price range, which also turned out to be rather unremarkable. Then came the agnolotti which seemed a bit toned down from the first time we had tried it. Had the food police come and ordered them to reduce the richness? I’m not sure, but maybe. It was still very rich, but lacked the depth and foie gras flavor I remembered it used to have. Oh well, fortunately I also ordered the lamb chops which were awesome. Perfectly charred on the outside and medium rare on the inside and was the one dish that paired admirably with the wine.

We skipped dessert and headed to the blackjack tables. I played for a few hours and the others finally showed up and split up between the poker room, blackjack and the craps tables. I busted out after about 3 hours thanks in large part to a hand where I re-split 8’s four times against a dealer 6 and the dealer drawing to a 21. Doh. I went to find the others and came across Kat and Esth at the craps table. Tried that too, and had no luck there either, so since I had blown what I came with, I decided I’d just kill time in the slowest possible way- $1/$2 no-limit. I ended up playing there for almost 8 hours and only playing 2 big pots, both of which I lost. First one I tried to price out the flush draw on the turn but the guy called anyway and caught the river flush. The second one I flopped a set of 9’s, check-raised the guy to my left who called on a board of 96Q, two clubs. The turn came K of diamonds, I lead out with $100 to price out the flush again, and he immediately moves all-in over the top. I figured him for 10 J of clubs and after a long while of deliberating, I folded. Rog said he caught a glimpse of his hole cards and saw a 9 and a red Ace, but I don’t see how the guy could have called the flop bet with that. Regardless, there was no way I could have called his all-in since I figured to need the board to pair in order to win. C’est la vie.

Fortunately a couple of the others fared better than I did. Gar chopped a sit n’ go and Esth cleaned up at the roulette and craps tables (her first ever in a casino too!). Even Rick hit on a slot machine! Good stuff. The winners treated for a giant breakfast at the Metropolitan and then we hit the blackjack tables for one last session. We got lucky and caught a good couple of shoes at the handicap accessible table. In 45 minutes, I recovered half of what I lost the night before and we all headed home on a high note.

I had to take care of a server reboot at 7p in order to get a patch installed (for the daylight savings time change), but the plan was to meet back up with everyone at 9p for dinner at Gama. Everyone barely had anytime for even a nap, and I was running on only 3 and a half hours of sleep myself. But the food was really good at Gama and the watermelon soju was flowing freely. Also tried some light Korean rice wine which was really pleasant. And all of it came to only $30 per person. Good deal.

After dinner, everyone was too pooped to party except for me, Gar, Esth and Twoin so the four of us went to Decibel for some sake. Gar had some kind of special hot sake with a piece of dried salted fish at the bottom and which they ignited when serving. I tried it and really liked the fishy taste. It made the sake taste almost like soup. We killed off a bottle of daiginjo sake and snacked on some edamame and lychee and then called it a night…

Well, they called it a night anyway. I headed over to Punch and Judy’s to hang with the High Life for a couple hours until she got off work. She was headed to a birthday party afterwards but by that point I was pretty exhausted so I bagged and went home. With the time change, I think it was almost 5am by the time I actually went to bed.

Sunday was a recovery day, just sitting around on the sofa and watching the last episodes of the K-drama Stairway to Heaven. It turned out to be a pretty good drama despite my initial annoyance with so many of the blatant similarities with Winter Sonata (same lead actress, a car accident, a person thought to be dead, half-brother/half-sister issues, residual damage from the accident, etc). But just on the merits of the performances of the two leads alone, this drama was a winner. It also featured a caucasian actor in a very cool role as Director Jang, the loyal corporate right hand man who takes care of everything; kind of a Mr. Wolf type character. All the hero would have to do is say “Director Jang, please take care of this” and people would get busted out of jail, people who were hiding would be found, whole weddings would get arranged, and in general shit just got done! I wish I had a Director Jang type working for me. That way I could make him take care of business… so that I can go back to sleep.

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