weren't allowed to go to such places.
Sometimes, a local rabbi proclaimed that
he disagreed, Dr. Kaufman said. And it
typically happened in cases when the
rabbi gambled himself.
In a Commerce Township living room,
seven 30-something Jewish men sit
around a fold-up card table.
The players use fancy Vegas-style
striped poker chips, Bellagio Hotel
playing cards. A green-felt overset top,
with plastic slots for chips and drinks,
covers the table. The drinks are soft
and the talk is G-rated and work-relat-
The group has been playing for
about 2'/2 years. They meet every
third Tuesday at one of their homes,
starting promptly at 7:30 p.m. and
ending at 10:15 p.m. These guys
have to work in the morning.
Some play in other monthly
games; most have small children
and, like the "study group," most
learned as teenagers.
Samantha Cohen, 3, approaches
her dad, Paul, to give him a good-
night kiss. He gives her two chips to
throw into the pot, before wishing
everyone a good night.
Children's books occupy the
shelves and toys are neatly piled
throughout the house; the signs of
being in a young family's home are
This Commerce Township family is
too young to have decades-old family
photographs hanging on the walls, but
the poker games and the camaraderie
that come with it are ageless and will go
on from generation to generation. ❑
Below: Morris Prostak of Southfield
rakes in a winning hand
Bottom: Samantha Cohen, 3, of
Commerce Township helps her father,
Paul, ante up as Steve Teper of
Farmington Hills watches.
t's been called the Cadillac of
poker games and has insinu-
ated itself into television on a
nightly basis from the World
Poker Tour on the Travel Channel
to Celebrity Poker on the Bravo
Channel, to Late Night Poker on
Fox Sports, to the World Series of
J Katz of West Bloomfield.
Poker on ESPN.
the whole tournament very early on."
They're not lying when they say
Ruby plays Internet tournaments,
"Texas Hold'em takes a minute to
mostly limit games. He spends some
learn and a lifetime to master."
winter months in Vegas and knows
Texas Hold'em basics:
where and where not to play.
• Up to 10 players per table, and a
And the old adage is true.
round of bets after every deal.
"If you're playing for 20 minutes
• Each player is dealt two hole
you don't know who the sucker
• Three community (face-up) cards, is, its you," he says. "Remember that.
Any poker game, anywhere."
called "the flop," are dealt.
Patience is a great virtue in limit
• A fourth community card, called
he adds. "You gotta bide your
"the turn," is dealt.
in no-limit, fearlessness and
• The fifth community card, "the
being able to read the other person are
river," is dealt, followed by a final
the greater virtues.
round of bets.
When you get into high
• The best five-card hand
then the no-limit pro
it like a dog," he
A world of difference in
guys have a sixth
temperament separates those
who play limit Hold'em from
Tells, those nervous tics or
those who play no-limit,
habits that help opponents
where a player can bet his or
know if a person is bluffing or
her entire stack of chips at any
holding a monster hand, work
time, says Carl Ruby of West
only when the stakes are high, he said.
Bloomfield, who has played both.
"People playing within their means
"In limit Hold'em, the limits start
won't have a lot of tells because no
very low, and if you get a bad beat or
one hand is going to be that impor-
play a hand wrong, you're not out of
the tournament," he says. "No-limit is tant," he said. "And if they do anyway,
that's too bad. Maybe they should
so mentally tiring and so draining. If
take up some other game." 17
you play one hand poorly or you lose
your concentration, it can cost you
Too Much Gambling?
Playing poker or other games of
chance can be addictive and derail a
Addictive personalities are hard-
wired in the pursuit of pleasure, says
George Surowy, an addictions thera-
pist at the Maplegrove Center in West
Surowy works • closely with Temple
Shir Shalom in West Bloomfield,
which hosts Alcoholics Anonymous
and Narcotics Anonymous meetings.
For information on gambling addic-
tion, contact Gamblers Anonymous,
Michigan Hotline Number: (313)
792 - 2877; or