10 Questions Answering the Who and Why Bill’s Poker Blog Site Exists
1. Who is Bill?
That’s a question I ask myself every day. As soon as I have an answer I’ll update this page.
2. What’s Bill’s Poker Blog about?
It’s been about many things over the years. Way back in the day I got together with a friend and we created the Real Internet News Initiative (RINI.org). We picked the name because I already owned the domain and we were too lazy to think of anything cooler. Of course, that was before it was called a weblog. In fact, it was so far back that it was before there was an Internet. We used to chisel posts into stone tablets and then we would walk those tablets (uphill in the snow – both ways) to our friends and families caves so they could chisel in comments as we sat around the campfire. Like I said, that was a long time ago. Things have changed a bit since then.
With the invention of computers RINI.org was combined with billrini.com and it was a weblog with little purpose and a complete lack of goals other than to serve as a place for me to post links to interesting stuff so I could find them when I woke at 2am in the morning trying to remember what the URL was to that crazy chicken website I had seen six months ago. Needless to say the audience was quite small.
The most recent transformation of the site has been to chronicle my poker life. When I first started playing poker seriously (and some would argue that hasn’t happened yet) I ran across Iggy’s site and said “That’s pretty cool. I’ll rip off his idea instead of coming up with one of my own.” With that, another poker weblog was born.
3. Will Bill’s Poker Blog help me become a better poker player?
I certainly hope not.
4. What’s your poker story?
Well, even at an early age I knew I was destined to become the world’s best poker player. As a child I was an egotistical sociopath prone to delusions of grandeur so thoughts of this nature were quite common. In fact, at one time I had my sights set on becoming supreme ruler of the universe but I figured that would be a lot of work and even as a child I was pretty lazy so I dropped that idea entirely. Still, as I grew older and my delusions of grandeur matured into illusions of grandeur I stayed true to my poker calling.
At the tender age of ten I left home and traveled to the world famous casinos of Nepal in search of divine poker enlightenment. For years I studied under the great Nepalese poker gurus and with each passing year my skills at the more ancient forms of poker such as 357 (the Hyndai of poker), baseball (the Yugo of poker), and blind man’s bluff (the Schwinn of poker) developed by leaps and bounds. I soon found myself able to make $3 and sometimes $4 USD a week (even more if they didn’t always screw you on the goat to USD exchange rate)! Yet, I still had not attained total poker enlightenment so I continued on my journey and became a poker nomad.
I loved the freedom of being out on the road. I would travel from village to village and town to town fleecing the locals for tens of dollars. But despite being flush with cash and blessed with more cheap women and loose booze than any twelve year old could ever want, I knew that to become the best I needed to master the game and attain poker enlightenment.
So here I am today; a successful poker player making gobs and gobs of money hoping to one day reach poker nirvana.
5. I see, so what’s your day job?
Depends on what day you’re asking.
I’m currently the Head of Online Poker for the World Series of Poker (WSOP.com). The best job in the world! We launched online poker in Nevada and New Jersey and became part of the first interstate poker pact with Delaware. We’re truly doing groundbreaking stuff everyday.
Prior to the WSOP, I was at the World Poker Tour (WPT) for a few years where I was the product manager for their online offerings.
The WPT was sort of my re-entry into the online poker world. After several years working for PartyPoker in Gibraltar as Poker Room Manager and Poker Product Manager, I felt that the next really “big” thing in online poker would be when the US market opened back up again.
Since I didn’t know exactly when that would be, I decided to take some time off and travel. I moved to Bangkok, Thailand and spent about two and a half years traveling around South East Asia, learning Thai, meeting a lot of really great and interesting people, and occasionally doing consulting for online gaming companies.
Before that I worked for Tiltware (cough, cough . . . Full Tilt Poker) in Los Angeles where I was a project manager in charge of everything from the Mac poker client to the payment processing systems.
Pre-poker, I was a child of the dotcom boom (and bust). I worked with companies like AOL, eToys, and the IEEE Computer Society on software development projects.
6. What do you like to do when you’re not playing poker or lying about how you got involved with poker?
Travel (goes hand in hand with scuba diving)
Above Water Photography
Design Software / Write Code
7. What places have you traveled to?
Not enough. Let’s see:
Isle of Man
The list goes on and on (hopefully). Check out my Where Have You Been? section where I try to keep the list of places I’ve visited up to date.
8. What’s the best poker advice you would give a new player.
Always fold pocket aces.
9. If I wanted to [ask you a question, send you free stuff, hire you, send you a subpoena, etc] how would I go about contacting you?
Use this link. My people will get back with your people who will get back with you and then you can get back with me. Sorry for all of the middlemen but I have to keep my entourage busy otherwise they’ll steal the silverware.
10. What’s next for Bill?
I was thinking about grabbing lunch. After that I may win a WSOP bracelet or two and then retire.