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Feb 2, 2008 Well...I took the BIG step! It has been a while coming, but circumstances at work have made it such that I can take the "big plunge"...that being that I will be playing poker for a living. If all goes well, I will be "unemployed" (jeez...I never thought I would be using that particular phrase!) around the beginning of March or possibly April and will be attempting to make my living playing cards. It just made sense. Besides loving the game (and I know that may be very difficult for many folks to completely understand), I did the math and saw how much I was making playing "part time". Extrapolate that out to "full time" and it just did not make sense to keep sticking with a job that made me unhappy and miserable to be around. So, I made the ultimate life choice...I don't want to be "that guy" in 20 years....sitting on the couch and wondering "what if?". I think I have it pretty well planned out. If it does not go as planned, I have some cushion....so.... WISH ME LUCK!!!! I am sure, for those interested, you'll be able to read about my exploits here in the blog area. More to come soon!
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3 years ago
Anthony G Congratualtions Micahel and Good Luck buddy...Wish you always the Best! You need to save up for that Renato 9 karat...Yowzer! All kiding aside, Knock'em Dead bud. Anthony 3 years ago
Mark I wish you nothing but the best.I too look foward to seeing you on espn. 3 years ago
JOE THE HOROLOGY COLLEC… Michael, Congrats on the recent decision to change careers. Not many people take that leap of faith. I can tell you that I personally have made one of my passions in life into a career (Owning a Real Estate and Mortgage company) and while it takes much discipline, dedication and time...the experience can grow you as a person and be quite rewarding. I wish you the best of success and will also be looking forward to seeing you on the World Poker Tour! :) 3 years ago
Big Joe Hey Mike Glad to see you make that decision Im sure you will do well and I wish you the best of luck during this years season. I expect to see you at wpt and maybe the apt in atlantic city Im going on the 22nd and 23 of this month wish me luck again good luck and hope to bump into you soon take care and be safe. Big Joe 3 years ago
Scott Reboletti Congrats Michael! From my own personal (and quite recent) experience, I know that could not have been an easy decision. I'm glad for anyone that can leave a career that leaves them unhappy or unsatisfied. BUT, like Matt Damon said in "Rounders", there is no luck, so I will merely send you my Best Wishes. Based on what I have read about all of things you have accomplished in your life up to now, I amquite sure your discipline and dedication will take you very far in the latest venture. I can't wait to flip on ESPN and see you slugging it out at the MAIN EVENT or run into you on a trip out to Vegas! GO GET EM, Buddy!!! Scott ... Show more 3 years ago
Jan 29, 2008 My buddy Jim’s secret girlfriend! I could not believe it when I ran across this on the net! WOW!
LOL! 9:01 PM o
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3 years ago
Anthony G That is Awesome...Lucky Jim! That video is a keeper. 3 years ago
Shawn Wilsie best video ever, 3 years ago
Big Joe HEY THATS REALLY FUNNY HOPE JIM,S WIFE HAS A GOOD SENCE OF HUMOR OR HE MAY HAVE A LITTLE EXPLANNING TO DO. 3 years ago
Scott Reboletti That is GREAT!!!!! Believable up until she said he works out everyday. It is well documented that Jim HATES working out!!!!!! Looks like I'll have tons to talk about with Jim and his WIFE next weekend!!!!! LOL Good one, Michael!!!! 3 years ago
Actually, I was thinking that the well hung comment was a bit more of a "stretch" than the working out comment! LOL! Just goes to show what you can come up with when you have WAY too much time on your hands! Michael 3 years ago
N/A Oh my God.... I'm speechless. Too funny. 3 years ago ď‚ˇ
Jan 14, 2008 My martial arts background When I first set up this MySpace page and profile, I would have never expected that my background in the martial arts would garner so much attention from other folks. I figured the poker and watch topics would easily be the most discussed and/or asked about. However, that is not the case! I am getting more and more questions via PM about my martial arts background. To make things a little easier for me, I have pulled out some bio information about myself from a website I developed when I was still actively teaching and running a school. Hopefully this will answer most of the questions that folks will have.
With over a quarter of a century of training in the combative and energetic arts, the follwoing is a list of the ranks and instructor certifications that I hold in the stated arts:
Yondan (4th degree black belt) and Renshi instructor license - Ryukyu Kempo Karate-do Yondan (4th degree black belt) and Renshi instructor license - Matsukaze Aikibudo Sandan (3rd degree black belt) - Torite-jutsu Nidan (2nd degree black belt) - Shotokan Karate-do Lakan Dalawa (2nd degree black belt) - Modern Arnis Chodan - (1st degree black belt) - Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Certified Instructor - Torite-jutsu
Certified Instructor - Open Circle Fighting Method (OCFM) Certified Instructor (Level II) - Lin Kong Jing Qigong (Powerful Empty Force Enery Work) Koshiki Usui Reiki Ryodo (Level II)
In addition to the arts listed above, I have trained in a variety of other arts with different instructors. The following is a list of arts that I have trained in, but not pursued any formal rank:
Okinawan Goju-ryu Karate-do (IOGKF and Jundokan)
Chen Shi Taijiquan (Laojia Taolu Yi Lu, Er Lu/Pao Chui, Tui Shou, Chan Si Gong, and Sanshiba)
Lam Shi Taijiquan (Small Circle Form)
Yang Shi Taijiquan (Traditional 108 posture form and modern 24 posture form)
Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu
Fujian Baihequan (White Crane Fist) Gongfu
Bajiquan Gongfu (Eight Infinite Fist - Li Shu Wen lineage)
Piquazhang Gongfu (Splitting/Deflecting Palm Style - Li Shu Wen lineage)
Yiquan (Dachengquan) Gongfu
I am a firm believer in the martial and healing aspects of the energetic arts (qigong, chi kung, yoga, reiki, etc.). With that in mind, the following is a list of the martial, health and healing arts that I have experience in:
Lin Kong Jing Qigong (Powerful Empty Force Energy Work - Richard Mooney lineage)
Wuxing Qigong (5 Element Energy Work - Dr. Vince Black lineage)
Soaring Crane Qigong (He Xiang Zhuang - Pang Ming lineage)
Wild Goose Qigong (Dayan Qigong - Yang Meijun lineage)
Iron Palm Qigong (Tie Sha Zhang - Ku Yu Cheung/Gu Ru Zhang lineage)
Zhan Zhuang Qigong (Standing Stake Energy Work - Wang Xiang Zhai/Yu Yong Nian lineage)
Dragon's Gate Complete Reality School of Taoism (Lung Men Chuan Chen Tao)
Koshiki Usui Reiki Ryodo (Level II - Usui lineage)
I am also a firm believer in the power of the written word as a learning tool. I have been asked to share my knowledge and information in this manner on many occasions. The following is a list of some of my [martial arts] publication credits:
Co-author of the Dragon Society International's Torite-jutsu Reference Manual
(authored the chapter on the 5 Elements Theory or Gyogo/Wuxing) Kata Analysis Martial Arts Illustrated (09/2004, Vol. 17 No. 4) The Case for the 5 Elements in Vital Point Study: An Open Response to Rick Clark (currently unpublished) An Introduction to Traditional Chinese Medicine in the Martial Arts Black Book Fall/Winter 1997 Tori Technique 1 (Brush/Grab/Strike) Combat Magazine (Vol. 24, No. 11) Dragon Society International Webpage Point Analysis: GB-20 Combat Magazine (Vol. 1, No. 1) Dragon Chronicles (4th Quarter 1997) Dragon Society International Webpage
Other points of interest concerning me and my accomplishments within the martial arts community are as follows: One of the first six (6) people to ever be awarded a yudansha (black belt) ranking in Torite-jutsu. One of the first five (5) people to ever be awarded an instructor certification (menkyo) in Torite-jutsu. Have traveled nationally (13 states) and internationally (Canada, United Kingdom, Cyprus) teaching or assisting with the teaching of seminars on vital points and related topics. First American to be awared instructor certification in the Open Circle Fighting Method (OCFM) by the Open Circle Institute (OCI). Appointed to the Dragon Society International (DSI) research team by Professor Rick Moneymaker. Appointed by Dr. Glenn Morris to serve as an ambassador between the Dragon Society International and the Hoshinroshiryu organizations. 1999 inductee to the world Martial Arts Hall of Fame (Martial Artist of the Year). Appeared in and assisted with the production of numerous video training tapes distributed nationally and internationally. Written numerous articles that have been published nationally and internationally. Has trained law enforcement officers from the federal, state and local level in the use of vital points.
Has had live-in students (uchideshi) from both the US and Europe come live and train with him for advanced knowledge.
If you have any questions about me and the martial arts after reading the above, please feel free to go ahead and shoot me a PM. I appreciate all of the interest! 11:15 PM o
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3 years ago
Jan 12, 2008 New camera arrived - Fuji FinePix S700
I finally got tired of my old HP "point and shoot" camera and the generally crappy pictures that I can get with it. After ALOT of research, I finally decided on the Fuji FinePix S700. I got an absolutely great price on it from Beach Camera and their free shipping offer got it to me in 3 days via FedEx. I have been playing around with it this evening and could not be more pleased with it. The macro mode (needed for close up watch photography) is great and the quality of the shots are better than I could have expected. I am still in the process of figuring out how to use it correctly, but here are a few shots I was happy with:
Hopefully, as I figure out how to use the camera better, the pictures will improve. But, as it stands, I could not have asked for more with this purchase. Oh...watches are my Potger Pietri, Invicta Corduba and Invicta Ocean Ghost II.
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3 years ago
Scott Reboletti Thos Potger-Pietri Shots are GREAT!!!!!! Nice pick-up on that camera. I've been contemplating a new too, since it is so hard to get good shots of dark dial watches! Can't wait to see new photos! 3 years ago
Michael Davis Thanks Scott! I entered the first picture of the Potger Pietri into the WoW contest for this week on the forum. Maybe I will get a couple of votes! LOL! If you are even considering a camera, I really recommend the Fuji S700. I got it from Beach Camera (www.beachcamera.com) for about $170 with free shipping. It got to me in 3 days with a Saturday delivery from FedEx. You really cannot beat that deal. It has a macro and supermacro mode that works great for watch photography. The only thi ... Show more 3 years ago ď‚ˇ
Jan 10, 2008 Invicta (OTV) Skeleton Invicta (one of my favorite watch companies) recently had an OTV (Our Top Value) on the ShopNBC shopping channel that introduced this wonderful new mechanical skeleton. Wow! What a really, really nice watch! I wore it all day today and really fell in love with it. I managed to get some pictures of it tonight and here they are:
This watch has sapphire crystals front and back and comes in at a 46mm case diameter. This makes this watch one of the largest mechanical skeletons that you will come across. The watch is powered by a Technica Swiss Ebauche 2600K fully decorated mechanical movement. For my non-watch collecting friends, a mechanical means a watch that is powered only by winding it. No battery and not powered by wearing it (an automatic)...think your father's or grandfather's watch. It is also important to note that even though "Swiss" is in the name of the movement, neither the watch nor the movement is Swiss made. The movement originates from a company out of the Orient that is fully owned by Invicta. The bracelet is nice with a multi-piece link that is brushed and polished 316L stainless and has a "scissors" style clasp (something I really like). I
was able to pick up the watch (including my coupon, cash back rebate and free shipping) for $169. The price is now at $350 and worth it. Congrats to my other friends that picked this beauty up! It is a keeper for sure!
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3 years ago
Mark Great pictures and review!That is a beautiful watch. 3 years ago
Scott Reboletti I agree with Shawn. Great shots and review. Don't forget to save up for the special Admirale coming out for Philip's 150th anniversary. Oh yeah, or the 3 new models of Renatos coming out this year. Not to mention the SubAqua Noma Leviathan. Oh wait, Croton should have some new models coming out. You know what, never mind. They're coming out with more great watches than anyone could save up for! Thanks for sharing the photos and impressions of the OTV!!!!! 3 years ago
Shawn Wilsie DAMN, what nice shots and a well written review! 3 years ago
JOE THE HOROLOGY COLLEC… Another great review. I did see this one the other day and really like the scroll work. The photos once again are very good and the watch looks like a excellent addition to your collection. You know your picking up watches faster then me and thats saying something...just ask my wife, she always reminding me LOL! Guess i am gonna have some ketching up to do!
3 years ago
Michael Davis I got like 9 new watches in late November/early December...so I have to slow down some time! LOL! Plus, I need to save up for the new model of the SAIII...I really like that 3 hand model! Thanks for the kind words! Michael 3 years ago ď‚ˇ
Jan 9, 2008 My new 32 Degrees Apogee watch Current mood:
I just got this Apogee model watch from a new company called 32 Degrees. For those familiar with the watch, it is a take off or "homage" to the Breitling Navitimer, but at a MUCH lower cost. Here are a few quick shots of it that I took:
For the cost (~$130), this watch is really, really hard to beat. As already stated, it has the Breitling look to it. The case measures in at 47mm which is a real plus in my book as I really tend to prefer the larger and heavier watches. The high polish 316L stainless steel bracelet is held together with screws as opposed to friction pins and this usually not
something you find in a watch at this price range. The Apogee utilizes mineral crystals (front and back) as a sapphire crystal would really add to the cost. The really interesting thing is that the watch is powered by a Chinese produced TY-2871 21 jewel (decorated) automatic movement. The reason that I say interesting is because (for my non-watch collecting friends) for years now, Chinese movements have been the "kiss of death" for most watch brands and were usually on found in very cheaply made watches and knockoff or replica watches (think the fake Rolex watches you can buy from street vendors for $50). That is all really changing. This movement is actually made by a company called Seagull and they seem to be doing a really good job of things. Time will tell...no pun intended...and I am interested in seeing how this one holds up. I am not rough on my watches by any stretch of the imagination, but I don't baby them either. Lastly, this watch is a multi-function...meaning that it shows the date, day of the week, month and an AM/PM indicator. I am usually not all that into multi-functions, but I made an exception in this case. My only quibble with the watch is the bracelet. I just wish it were a bit heavier. I am considering adding a high polish Watchadoo (do a search on eBay) bracelet. Those weigh in at around 90 grams or so...which would make the watch a bit more substantial on the wrist. Other than that, it is certainly a keeper and there will probably be more of the 32 Degrees brand in my watch buying future.
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3 years ago
Reed Hello Michael, I hope that you don't take this comment wrong, PLEASE DON'T, but I have a correction that you may be interested in. I am a huge fan of "BREITLING WATCHES" and I have one of these "APOGEE" and even though it it slightly close to the "NAVITIMER" it actually is an almost exact match minus the A.M./P.M. indicator and the fact that it is a "MULTI-FUNCTION & not a "CHRONOGRAPH", as is the "BREITLING", to the "BREITLING FOR BENTLEY" model "6.75" you can see exactly what I am speaking of if you go to their websitewww.breitling.com & click on the link for "BREITLING FOR BENTLEY". I absolutely love the SHARP photography you did on these timepieces & the in depth review that you wrote. I respect your knowledge and passion for fine timepieces & I know just how it is when the "BUG" gets it's teeth in you as I too am infected by the urge to collect & learn as much as my feeble brain is capable of. I only wish that someday I too could acquire a collection as "DIVERSE & IMPRESSIVE" as yours !!!!!!!!!!!!! Respectfully, Reed Smith A.K.A. WATCHFREAK420 3 years ago
JOE THE HOROLOGY COLLEC… Great pics Michael! I have seen this brand before and almost picked up another model, however I tend to be a little more reserved these days when it's comes to anything other then a swiss movement, not to say I dont own several Miyota's though. Very nice review and if you pick up anymore of the 32o watches let me know what you think after you have had it for awhile. 3 years ago
Scott Reboletti Great review Michael! Hope it works out for you! It definitely has the Navitimer look down. Even better at the 47MM!!!!!! Thanks for the review! 3 years ago
Jan 2, 2008 Closing out 2007 with some positive numbers! Current mood:
When it comes to poker, I am concentrating on Sit and Go (SnG) tournaments. For my friends not familiar with poker, a SnG is a single table tournament. Everyone puts up a certain dollar amount and when you get a full table of 9 or 10 (depending on the online sight you are playing), the tournament begins. It pays out the top three (3) places...50% for 1st, 30% for 2nd and 20% for 3rd. If you finish below that, you get nothing. I like
these tournaments because of my schedule. I travel alot (for instance, I am jumping on a plane to Indiana a little later today) and you never usually have to wait around for these tournaments to start and they typically only last about an hour. So, I can hop on and play at the airport or at the hotel or where ever. I also like them because I can play several at the same time online. Usually, I am playing 3 at a time. These are easier to play than most other tournaments as they have a formula in which you play them...very tight in the begining when things are cheap and hyper-aggressive in the later stages when the blinds are high in relation to your chip stack.
When it comes to these tournaments, there are two stastics that you are looking for. On is your "In The Money" percentage or ITM. Like it sounds, this is the percentage that you finish 3rd or better. The second stastic is your "Return On Investment" or ROI. Again, as it sounds, this is how much you are making in relation to how much you are spending to play. As I closed out 2007, I have to say that I am pretty happy with my results. My ITM is 44.3% and my ROI is at 20.8%. That means that I am finishing 3rd or better almost every other time I play and I am getting a 20.8% return on each dollar I spend playing. That may not seem like much, but these are very high numbers and most SnG players are loosing players. So, I am just hoping that this trend continues into 2008. I have about another 100 to complete with positive numbers and then I move up in levels to the next higher dollar amount of buy in.
Anyway, that's my brag post for today! LOL! More on SnG's and the strategy behind them later.
My watch for today (remember, I am a watch collector), as it usually is when I travel, is my Invicta Subaqua Noma III. Yes, this bad boy really is as big as it looks. The case diameter is 50mm and that does not include the pushers or the monster sized crown guard. It weighs a ton...some where in the neighborhood of 300 grams. It is a Swiss Made watch powered by a Ronda quartz movement. Believe me, this thing is alot of fun to get through metal detectors! LOL! 3:15 AM
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3 years ago
Big Joe Hey Mike How are you I like your selection,s in watches I have the same s/n in brown mop I also have the mech. skelton otv as well as many other Ivicta,s I have been collecting watches for about 4 yrs and I also play texas holdem I go to local tornaments at firehouse,s and play in a monthly game at the golden spike I love the game as much as the watches I dont know how often you watch shopnbc but looking at shawn,s and Jim,s blogs I see you name often Im Big Joe from New York and yes I have close to 920 watches at the present time. I do know Wing, Paul Woods,Lior,David, and a/l all on a personnel basis and have had lunch or just hung out with them from time to time.Id like you to add me to you friends list so that we may talk from time to time my email adress is BigJoe2@optonline.net and I have my own myspace page well thats all for now take care and be safe. Big Joe
3 years ago
JOE THE HOROLOGY COLLEC… Love this shot! 3 years ago
Scott Reboletti Hey Michael, I play around on Poker Stars, but not very often. Those are great percentages. I would like to flip on ESPN2 once and see you cleaning up on a rebroadcast of the WSOP!!!! Thanks for sharing the stats! Love the SAIII by the way!!!! 3 years ago