Growing up I played more than my share of cards. I played Gin, Rummy, Gin Rummy and the like, but it wasn't until I started drinking gin and rummy that I got into poker.
In college at the University of Georgia, my friends and I put together a poker night that evolved into a poker week. We would play cards almost every weeknight with a rotating cast of opponents from the dorm at which we played. It was easy to join into a game when you lived at the casino. The core members of our poker club were few, however, three guys and myself. As we practiced our skills improved to the point that the rest of the cast of gamblers didn't stand much of a chance. Our profits were still small, in that our stakes were the very definition of micro. It was also one of the best times I've had with poker, playing crazy dealer's-choice games mixed in with serious hold'em, omaha, stud and draw tournaments. A dollar buy-in became five, then the fish quit biting. My friends and I moved to a bigger pond.
The dorm days rarely left me without at least double my buy-in, and still my total bankroll was under $100. That is as much a testament to my skill as it is proof of the extremely low pots we were after. We migrated to the dorm across the quad and started playing $10 and $20 buy-in ring games. Occasionally, we organized into multi-table tournaments. I won two out of the three and scored my biggest payouts of the day.
The bankroll of my closest poker peer rose with mine and we had to move off campus for the bigger challenges and pots. That's what I like to call the "Rounders Years."