A friend and his pen

Six or seven years ago, I stumbled into the circle of a guy named Pauly. You’ve seen me write a lot about him here. We’ve never lived in the same city, but over the years we’ve become close friends. Off the top of the head, I can recall trips to Monte Carlo, Argentina, Costa Rica, and the Bahamas together. We’ve seen concerts together in three different cities, including a five-day run in an RV in the backwoods of south Florida. He’s traveled here to Greenville at least three times I can recall. He took me on a dozen-bar tour of East Village a few years back. Frankly, I’ve lost track of the number of places we’ve hung out. Of all the trips though, the most significant–for better or worse–have been the five summers we’ve spent in Las Vegas covering the World Series of Poker.

I’ve written some about those months here on this blog, but most of what appears here is sugar-coated for family-friendly viewing. Vegas is often a disgusting place and I see a lot of stuff that just doesn’t fit on these pages. Pauly, meanwhile, doesn’t sugar-coat much. He’s written volumes about 2005-2009 World Series of Poker summers on his blog Tao of Poker.

Today, Pauly released his self-published book Lost Vegas: The Redneck Riviera, Existentialist Conversations with Strippers, and the World Series of Poker.

I once wrote this about the guy many people know as Dr. Pauly:

“I don’t fault the few people who think Pauly fictionalizes his life. If I hadn’t seen a lot of it, I’d call shenanigans, too. However, as an occasional character in his misadventures, I can point to my mild liver damage and need for serious therapy as proof Pauly writes the truth. It’s not always pretty, it’s often disturbing, and it’s bound to leave you slightly scarred, but it’s real. He also tosses a mean lime.”

If you don’t get the lime reference…well, you’ll have to read the book.

Pauly at the Langerado music festival, March 2008

I’ve not seen the book yet. Although he and I have had countless conversations about his efforts, I never wanted to see the pages in advance. That’s because I figure my name will pop up in there once or twice and I didn’t want to be tempted to ask him to keep something out of the book that he thought belonged. So, now, the book is out and I’m waiting (sort of impatiently) to get my hands on a copy.

This weekend, I’ll make my annual trip to Vegas to cover World Series of Poker main event alongside my buddy. I’ll get my copy then.

In the meantime, if you have the stomach for the underbelly of Las Vegas, click this link and buy yourself a copy.

Lost Vegas: The Redneck Riviera, Existentialist Conversations with Strippers, and the World Series of Poker.