Hello. We are Heather Allen and Paul Gearan and we are very pleased to introduce ourselves…drum roll please…as your new Advanced Poker Training Ambassadors.   We’ll be posting on this blog, helping with outreach to members and partners, and doing any number of odd jobs that the APT hierarchy deem worthy of our pay grade. We believe there was some mention of picking up dry cleaning and on-demand foot massages, but we were so thrilled to join the APT crew that we weren’t paying much attention to the details.

Regardless of the specifics, we could not be happier to be lending our skills to APT, during this exciting time of growth. We look forward to conversing with you about poker, hopes, dreams, and “The Voice” (I wish I could quit you!).  Heather wants it known for the record that “The Voice” is Paul’s shame not hers. OK, Paul promises to make only rare allusions to “The Voice”.  Instead, we’ll use this space to discuss all things poker. We also hope to hear from all of you about your experiences and perspectives on the game.

Who the heck are we boldly wading our way into this enterprise?  We’re a couple who work together (as data analysts), write together, play bar trivia together, and most importantly, play poker together.  Most people upon hearing how much time we spend together put the odds of our relationship surviving similar to someone having to go runner-runner KK to win a hand (Heather still wakes up in a cold sweat from nightmares of getting knocked out in a tournament in that exact fashion 4 years ago).  They also suggest making sure all the sharps in our house are under lock and key.

But they are ignoring one critical factor: each of us has a significant other who enjoys playing poker as much as we do!  No ducking increasingly annoyed text messages at a once-in-a-lifetime soft table when a promise to be home by 7pm expired 4 hours ago. No need to barter cleaning the garage in exchange for a Saturday evening bounty tournament. We’re both in that tournament ignoring long overdue household chores together.

And why the moniker “Ambassadors”?  The short list of titles included “Liaisons” but that sounded too illicit, and we’re just not there quite yet in our relationship with all of you.  After watching The Grand Budapest Hotel we briefly considered “Concierges,” but Paul failed to correctly pronounce the word over 6 attempts, so that was out.  “Spiritual guides” seemed too lofty and Burning Man for our styles and “Envoy” too early Reagan administration.  “Ambassadors” just had a certain dignity and je ne sais quoi that we aspire to, so that is how we shall be known.

So here we are. In between trying to improve our early position play through APT tutorials and attempting to beat Scott Clements playing KQ in a Beat the Pro Challenge, we’ll be your APT ambassadors. Please feel free to reach out to us through this space or via email (Heather’s is heather.allen@advancedpokertraining.com and Paul’s is…wait for it… shockingly paul.gearan@advancedpokertraining.com).  Good luck at the live or virtual tables.  Check in with you soon.