Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Isildur1 takes his driving test

I just did an email interview with Gutshot.com on condition we just talk about my driving and not my poker. Here's the result:

Isildur1, we’re very happy that you’ve agreed to this interview. You recently stunned the poker world by pulling out of the Big Game IV in London because you had to take your driving test.

I heard Cole South just paid cash for a Bentley Continental with money-green leather seats, Brian Townsend has a new Porsche Cayenne, and Brian Hastings just got "TY ISI1" numberplates. You played for millions against these guys. So, what kind of wheels do you have?

My mum's Volvo 740 is a helluva ride. When I'm cruising around I can play all my favourite cassette tapes. On hot days, I wind down the window and open the sunroof and imagine I'm in the Ferrari Enzo I could have bought back in December.

Did you take many lessons before your test?

You know what Brian Hastings, Townsend and Cole South have in common? They all needed to be taught how to drive. But no amount of CardRunners videos can teach me how to pass my driving test. I have a natural, instinctive gift for driving, and so there'll always be guys happy to lend me a car and put me in for my test.

But you must have learned from somewhere?

I watched Gone in 60 Seconds, 2 Fast 2 Furious, The Last Run, and Monte Carlo or Bust. I found it easy to identify with these titles. Straight after watching Harry Garmes cruising down the French Riviera, I fired up my mum's Volvo 740, and sped along the coastal road out of Uddevalla. I took a hand off the wheel to turn up my Velvet Underground tape while the wind messed up my already artfully-messed hair and the speedometer pushed past 120km.

I felt like James Dean, only Donald Turnupseed couldn't catch me. I was unstoppable; and in total harmony with the car, the road, the whole material world. It was almost as good as playing poker.

Doo da-doo da-doo doo-da-doo doo da-doo da-doo...

So what kind of driver are you? Does Isildur1 drive like he plays poker?

You could say I move my car like I move my chips. I have a super-aggressive style and I’m always putting other drivers to a lot of tough decisions.

I don’t like other drivers to get a read on me. I've perfectly balanced my indicating range. When I signal left, sometimes I turn right. Sometimes I do go left. But other times I just keep going.

When I’m behind the wheel I don’t even like to look at the dashboard. I’m more of a feel kind of guy.

I don’t have the patience to work through the gears. I keep trying to move from 1st into 4th.

And when I’m too tired to drive at 60km, if I speed up to 120km I’m okay.

I see. Well, the question everybody has right now is “Did you pass your test?

For me, driving tests are not about passing. It's not about the score at the end of the day. I just love to drive, and maybe for the first half of the test I was the best driver in the world, and for the second half when I was tired and angry and very emotional I was the worst, and the instructor was screaming at me to stop, and I just wouldn't quit until I had crashed and burned. But that's okay. I can take the test again another day. What matters is in that moment I was alive, Alive, ALIVE!

Sadly I can't say the same thing about my mum's Volvo. Or the driving instructor.

I took the bus home.