I had a weird epistemic thing happen to me on Wednesday as I was coming home from a night of watching my friend play poker at the Borgata in Atlantic City.
As you probably are aware, it’s possible to know an individual under two different descriptions and not realize that the two descriptions pick out the same individual. Take Lois Lane for example. She knew both “Superman” and “Clark Kent”, but didn’t realize that these two names referred to the same person. (Comic book fans, does she ever come to realize this?).
I bring up this Lois Lane/Superman epistemic situation for the following reason.
On Wednesday, I discovered that I was in Lois Lane’s epistemic position with respect to one of the readers of PokerMoments.
An old highschool & college poker friend of mine came in from Seattle to visit his father and asked me if I wanted to get together with him. I last saw him in May in Vegas at Caesars, where he and I had played at a $4/8 limit game, my very first experience playing Hold’em.
I suggested that we go to Atlantic City and play a little poker. He was up for it and was kind enough to drive. We ended up at the Borgata, where I watched him win around $80 at a $1/2 no-limit table. I didn’t play because these $1/2 stakes, the lowest at the Borgata for no-limit, are a bit too high for my comfort zone. They aren’t a problem for my friend, who is a successful doctor, who not only works in private practice, but also works in prisons, and who once had to treat a death row inmate. I was happy to watch the action and nurse my toasted almond. I can be such a chick.
On the drive back, my friend and I started talking about PokerMoments, and he tells me that he likes reading Sparky’s posts. You know, the ones that suggest that gambling is somehow immoral and anti-Quaker, or how to tell whether you have a gambling problem. So I tell him he should leave Sparky a comment. And he says that does. Huh?
It turns out that my highschool/college poker friend is none other than QuietStorm (I forgot the musical reference for why he chose this nom de plume), a writer of PokerMoments comments. I hadn’t made the connection. My friend thought that I knew that he was QuietStorm because when he commented his email address would be sent to me. While I do recall thinking that his email address looked familiar, I never made the connection.
Finding out that QuietStorm was my friend was weird for both me and Sparky. I’m still trying to figure out why.