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Baldwin takes a break from CityCenter

From the World Series of Poker:

CityCenter Chief Executive Officer Bobby Baldwin took a little time away from the $8.5 billion development Monday to play in the World Series of Poker’s main event.

Based on his results, he’ll be taking more time away from the project on Wednesday.

Baldwin, who also holds the titles of director, officer and chief design and construction officer for MGM Mirage, won the World Series of Poker in 1978 when he was known as "The Owl," the quiet and studious professional poker player from Oklahoma.

Baldwin, as he has done in past years, entered the $10,000 buy-in, no-limit hold ’em world championship event. When he won the title at Binion’s Horseshoe, he beat a field of 42 players to win $210,000.

On Monday, Baldwin was one of 2,809 players to enter the fourth day of the extended opening round. A total of 6,494 players entered the main event. This year’s champion will win $8.55 million.

Baldwin, along with 2002 champion Robert Varkonyi, survived Monday and will play on Wednesday (today). Fourteen former champions, including 2008 winner Peter Eastgate, survived the first day and will advance to the next round.

Baldwin has won four World Series of Poker bracelets, his last coming in 1978. The last time he cashed in a World Series of Poker event was 1994, when he finished 24th in the main event, winning $16,800.

For more, visit www.lvrj.com/blogs/wsop


Snake eyes in Moscow

From columnist John L. Smith:

When then-President Vladimir Putin vowed to clean up vice-riddled Moscow, it’s hard to imagine the city’s corporate and home-grown gambling bosses took him too seriously. But this past week current president and Putin pal, Dmitry Medvedev, made good on that promise.

Casinos were shuttered all over Russia. If they wished, the casino operators would be allowed to relocate their gambling halls and slot parlors to distant outlying areas — places so far from Moscow the average Russian couldn’t find them with a map and two tanks of gas.

For more from John L. Smith, visit www.lvrj.com/blogs/smith


A way to kill newspapers, not save them

From Editor Thomas Mitchell:

It sure must be great working for a big, sophisticated, forward-thinking operation like The Washington Post. Oh, to be able to afford to pay brilliant people to do nothing but sit around and invent whole new ways to make money.

Why just the other day they came up with something called a "salon." For a mere $25,000-a-pop sponsorship ($250,000 for 11, buy 10 and get one free) you get to rub elbows at the home of Publisher Katharine Weymouth with Post reporters and editors, members of Congress and officials of the Obama administration.

Actually, our crack marketing staff came up with a similar idea, but the publisher nixed the ice-water dunking booth, which was the only way we were going to get Harry Reid to participate.

We had a hard time finding any public officials and politicians willing to participate, since most of them refer to us privately as those bastards on Bonanza. Well, a few of them say it to our faces.

We kicked around the idea of offering to have our editorial board meetings in the silo room at the Draft House up on Rancho Drive — we’d call it a "saloon." Buy us a couple of rounds of brews and we’ll agree to anything. We’ll even go home with you.

The Politico quoted from the flier the Post was sending around to potential sponsors: …

"An off-the-record dinner and discussion at the home of CEO and Publisher Katharine Weymouth. … Bring your organization’s CEO or executive director literally to the table. Interact with key Obama administration and congressional leaders." …

But the higher-ups at the Post got cold feet. As the paper’s ombudsman Andy Alexander explained in his blog: "For a storied newspaper that cherishes its reputation for ethical purity, this comes pretty close to a public relations disaster."

Andy, who I’ve worked with on American Society of Newspaper Editors committees, explained the problem for the ethically challenged: "The problem: The Post often decries those who charge for access to public officials. This raised the specter of a money-losing newspaper doing the same thing — and charging for access to its own reporters and editors as well."

For more from Thomas Mitchell, visit www.lvrj.com/blogs/mitchell


Surviving infidelity

From Human Matters columnist Steven Kalas:

A marriage can survive an affair. Is it the normative outcome of an affair? No — not in my experience. Affairs are devastating, exhausting events. Betrayal is unique among marital injuries. Covenant bonds, once severed, can be reconnected, but never restored to their previous state of innocence.

In most cases, the blow to the ego is mortal. Even when every fiber of our being desires preserving the marriage, many people find it impossible to ever again open their hearts to the offending partner.

Some couples separate more or less immediately. Others agonize and rail for a few months, then separate. For me, the most tragic outcome are those couples who don’t divorce; rather, they walk one another to the grave in bitterness, guilt and recrimination. I’m saying that, if surviving an affair means merely not divorcing, this is not an outcome I’d wish upon anyone. But surviving, truly healing, and then thriving? Thriving at a level of trust, passion, authenticity and integrity heretofore unknown in the marriage? Yes, it’s possible.

There are couples out there living that very story. These couples have done the work. They have done the suffering. And they made it.

For more from Steven Kalas, visit www.lvrj.com/blogs/kalas

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