Today I have an exclusive interview with Newcastle local and very good friend of mine Ian Bertram (left), commonly known as Nemesis for our NPF readers.
During this interview we discussed various different subjects given Ian an opportunity to share his views on his journey into poker and where his future lies, as well as a number of awkward difficult brainteasers which I'm sure he spent countless hours tanking over.
DT "When and how did you get started playing poker? Did you have any inspirational poker players, books, moments, shows, etc. that were instrumental for you?."
IB "I believe it was in 2008. Although I had played pretty much every other card game, I had never played nor had I any interest in poker until one night I was flicking through the channels and found nothing to watch so started reading. I had stopped on a channel showing coverage of the GUKPT and became engrossed in it, which lead me to sign up to a blue square account. Managed to luckbox my way to winning a tournament and it’s been downhill ever since! I then ran a pub for a year and set up a weekly game and then progressed to playing in the casino. As for inspirational poker players….no, not as such. I don’t follow the celebrity pro’s, I don’t know them and so they mean nothing to me, I wouldn’t even know if I was sitting at the same table as most of them. I am more inspired by some very good local players and try and learn something from each of them."
DT "Your NPF screen name is Nemesis, how did this come to fruition?. Do you have any other nicknames?."
IB "I suppose because it’s what I would like to become, everyone’s nemesis at the poker table. In my pool/snooker playing day’s I used to be known as the Ginger Wizard."
DT "If money doesn't grow on trees then why do banks have branches?."
IB "I haven’t quite twigged that one yet!"
DT "What's your profession away from the green felt?."
IB "I tend to get bored quite quickly so not surprisingly I have tried various things from motorsport to retail management. I did manage to stick at being a self-employed bathroom fitter for a few years but took a break as a pub landlord for a year 2008/2009 where I managed to injure my neck and never went back into fitting. I have always been interested in property development so if and when the opportunity arises I will most likely have a go at that."
DT "How many hours a week do you spend at the table?."
IB "Usually about an hour or so on a Sunday! Oh you mean poker…..well if you ask the wife she will say “way too much” and if you include the “tanking” time then she is probably right! It varies I suppose depending on how deep I go in a tournament. At the moment I usually just play twice a week so in a good week about 16hrs and on a not so good week about 30mins…."
DT "Are eyebrows considered facial hair?."
IB "Well it’s hair and it’s on your face so I guess it is! Although the way mine are going I might have to call in the forestry commission who will no doubt declare them a forest!"
DT "What's your biggest spending spree after a win?."
IB "You do know I’m married right?"
DT "Why does glue not stick to the bottle?."
IB "I think it sticks to the bottle pretty well, it’s always in there when I go to use it!"
DT "In January 2011 you launched a thread over the NPF aiming to take online poker serious, starting with a $600 deposit. How did that work out?."
IB "Well as you know I got off to what can only be described as a disastrous start but after that it went pretty well. Although I didn’t commit to the hours I had initially intended, I was getting very comfortable with the levels at which I was playing. Sadly it was on Full Tilt and we all know what happened there……I have a few things taking up a lot of my time at the moment but I hope to set myself another challenge some day when I can have a real go at it."
DT "Is it rude for a deaf person to talk (sign) with their mouth full of food?"
IB "Only if they have their hands full!"
DT "September 2010 you organised an NPF paintball day, how did that work out? Is this something you will look to arrange annually? I for one would love the opportunity to take part."
IB "Well there was initially quite a bit of interest but as is often the case, when the day came there were only 7 of us but it actually turned out to be a fantastic day. If we could get another one organised next year then I think I have just about recovered to take part! Running about in a T-shirt trying to be Rambo isn’t all it’s cracked up to be when you wake the next morning, but well worth it!!!"
DT "What do you consider your best and worst qualities?"
IB "Tough one….i would have to say that my best quality is probably also my worst. I tend to just say it as I see it and that sometimes gets me into a spot of bother. I do try to be bit more diplomatic these days but I would prefer it if everyone just said what they mean."
DT "When two people marry, they say "you may kiss the bride". What do they say if two men get married?. Also do they go to the same stag-do?."
IB "Is this some thinly veiled proposal? They should probably change it to “you may kiss the broom” and have a “sten-do”."
DT "Your well known for taking a long time to make your decisions, almost like your auditioning for a Hollywood movie. Are you aware there are no cameras?."
IB "It’s a dress rehearsal for when I hit the big time! It just seems like I’m taking my time but that’s because everyone else is going way too fast. Besides I play such a wide range that I almost always have a decision to make and even when I don’t, I have to make it look like I do!"
DT "Favourite rubdown?."
IB "Can’t remember the name but there’s a great little place near the spar in Belmont."
DT "What does the close of 2011 and opening of 2012 hold for Ian Bertram? Can we expect to see you frequenting the local Newcastle poker circuit? Plans to follow any UK tours (UKIPT, GUKPT, etc)."
IB "I used to enjoy playing the GUKPT but these days the UKIPT seems to be taking over as the premier tour and next year I would like to play as many as I can. I hope to have a real go at online next year too but not to the extent where I can’t get out and play locally, because to me the only likeable side of poker is the live social side. Getting out and seeing some friends and hopefully getting a good table draw usually makes the trip worthwhile, winning is a bonus."
I hope you all enjoyed this insight and being in the tank, with Newcastle's biggest tanker Ian “Nemesis” Bertram. All here at FTP would like to wish you success in the future mate.
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