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Seven agitated poker players — each of them reeling in poker pain — are beamed to the Painless Poker Clinic, where Tommy conducts a two-day seminar on how to play poker, and life, without all the stress and frustration.
Then we go to the Painless Poker Clinic. This is a fictional setting, with a self-stocking kitchen and the world’s most perfect poker table. At the clinic, the modern-day me leads a two-day seminar, with seven poker players who were magically transported to the clinic during their moment of greatest poker pain.
Those characters are totally made up, except that they aren’t. We know these people. We are these people.
There’s Charlie Archer, an innocent online grinder. And Mr. Lee, a big loser at Commerce Casino. And Alfonzo Calibri, a persnickety artistic type. You’ll meet Sonny Moon, a live-pro stoner. And Victor Salvo, a lawyer-with-family who plays at Foxwoods every chance he can get. And then there’s Mick Stanley, a famous high-stakes cash-game pro who is kind of a dick. And my favorite of the bunch, Babs McDerty, the grizzled battler.
We tell stories at the clinic. We bicker. We laugh. I lecture. They push back. I am there to offer up everything I know about painless poker. It resembles the coaching I do in real life, except that none of these people volunteered.
The seven chapters alternate between details from my real life—such as how I play poker, how I became a meditation coach, and how I hope to die—and the goings on at the clinic. Then, in the final chapter, aptly titled The Showdown… well, you’ll see.
"Painless is a fucking masterpiece." - Kat Martin
"The funniest book about pain I've ever read." - Zac Shaw
"Every monster is identified. This is tectonic." - Eileen Sutton