Listen up. I want everyone to start addressing me as “Colonel Nolan Dalla.”
Today, by official proclamation of Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, I was given that state’s highest honor, the designation as a full-fledged “Colonel.” Thanks to Gov. Steve Beshear, whom I’m pleased to find out is a Democrat. Receiving this award from a Republican might have been awkward.
I was told this honor had previously been granted to none other that the following luminaries — President Lyndon B. Johnson, astronaut John Glenn, Sir Winston Churchill, Elvis Presley, Muhammad Ali, and now yours truly, “Colonel Nolan Dalla.” Seems fitting, doesn’t it? Has a nice ring.
Many of you know I set and maintain the highest standards possible. I have strict rules for social engagements — including dining out with other people, being served in restaurants, and engaging in casual conversation.
Now, with Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Eve right around the corner, it occurred to me that most of my dedicated readers and followers might not be aware of my rigorous holiday protocols. Should you invite me to grace your merry occasion make it truly special for you and your guests, that means certain qualifications must be met. Note that depending on how important you are, and the prospects that you can either help me financially or with my career, some of these conditions may be flexible. However, the rest of you will be required to meet my demands in full and without question, or risk me blowing you off. Should you wish for me attend, adding significantly to the chances of your holiday gathering being successful, listen up and take careful notes.
Here are my ten demands for attending public holiday festivities:
I was delighted to be invited to play in last night’s poker charity event held at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas.
Each year for as long as I can remember, poker pro and legend Jennifer Harman has given something back by organizing and hosting a charity benefit for the Nevada SPCA (be warned about visiting the site — you might fall in love and end up adopting an animal). The Nevada SPCA does fabulous work rescuing needy animals, and helping to find them loving homes. I cannot write or say enough good things for this organization and the fine people who do this kind of work.
Friday night’s gala included several speeches, public and silent auctions, a red carpet extravaganza, dozens of cute and cuddly animals, and a charity poker tournament designed to raise money for the Nevada SPCA. We were informed that for each $50 raised, that would save one dog or cat. Hundreds of people showed up, and 180 players entered the tournament, with multiple re-buys. First place was a seat into next year’s WSOP Main Event Championship valued at $10,000 (which would have been ironic had I won it, since due to obvious restrictions I would not be able to play). What really mattered was coming out, supporting this great cause, and helping to raise awareness for these innocent animals who desperately need our love and care, and deserve so much more than the tough beats these creatures have been dealt in life.
She’s a special girl, filled with lots of love. More love than you can imagine. And more heart. And more strength. And more courage. Just wait until you learn what Toni has been through.
Toni is a 12-year-old part-Labrador mix. She lives a happy dog life with her human family in Fargo, North Dakota.
Toni might look perfectly normal, except for some grey around the eyes revealing she’s become a senior. But she’s quite a bit different from most other dogs. Instead of four legs, she has only three. But that doesn’t stop Toni from partially running and more frequently hopping around the house and yard, trying her best to keep up with her busy family.
She’s also different in other ways, too, and when you read further about her tear jerking start in life and the struggles she’s somehow endured and survived since that beginning, hopefully then you’ll come to appreciate the special bond Toni has with the Hanson’s.
Here’s Toni’s truly remarkable story.
Full Disclosure: From 2004 through 2006, I served as Director of Communications for PokerStars.com (Rational Gaming Enterprises). The views expressed herein do not reflect the opinions of my past or present employers or associates in any way. My views are entirely my own.
All I could think about last night, upon hearing that PokerStars.com had finally been approved to operate legally on U.S. soil for the very first time was what must have been going on in the mind of Isai Scheinberg — the founder and pioneering force behind the company that I served loyally for nearly three years.
Somewhere out there, he must be smiling.