Justice is Blinds Returns With Vanessa Selbst, Olivier Busquet and Ingrid Weber

3 years ago
Justice is Blinds Returns With Vanessa Selbst, Olivier Busquet and Ingrid Weber
24 Sep

One of the existential grinds poker pros tend to gripe about, once they are old enough and mature enough to have got over the sheer bloody joy of being able to tell their bosses to shove off, is the soul erosion caused by doing a job that benefits no one but yourself, while actively exploiting Joe Shmo on holiday in Vegas along with – and far worse– the addicted, deluded and irresponsible.

Some players do their best to give back. The success of the WSOP’s partnership with One Drop probably stems in part from this desire. But in Vanessa Selbst’s case that meant joining the board of the Urban Justice Centre and setting up  the punnily named Justice is Blinds tournament on the UJC’s behalf.

Fighting the Good Fight

The UJC’s website boasts that “since 1984, the Urban Justice Center has served New York City's most vulnerable residents through a combination of direct legal service, systemic advocacy, community education and political organizing.” Since then they have helped in ways that range from changing laws that victimized people who had been trafficked into the US, to providing free legal advice in soup kitchens.

Selbst’s role at the UJC has been in organising the Justice is Blinds tournaments, the third installment of which will kick off on the 25th September 2017

Big Names, Big Prizes

Tickets range from $500 for an observer to $25,000 for “one Full Table (9 seats) at the event, with VIP celebrity room access for all players, VIP champagne service, and a private poker game at your location with Vanessa Selbst for up to 10 guests, at a date TBD.” 

If that sounds a bit steep the winners of the 2015 (Ingrid Weber) and 2016 (Olivier Busquet) events have joined Selbst in making the following promo video which, by sharing, may allow you to win a seat at the table.

For those who enter, there are a range of prizes available to those who ‘cash’. These run from seats at a Jets Game down to a bottle of nice wine and PokerStars chip set.

As well as Vanessa herself, there will be a number of other poker pros in attendance; Olivier Busquet will be back along with Jonathan Little, Scott Seiver and Erik Seidel among others.

There will also be celebs from the real world, people like screenwriter Brian Koppelman (half the writing team behind Rounders), stage actor Aaron Tveit, journalists Ian Rappaport and Maria Konnikova, and comedian Richard Kind.

If you want to buy-in you can do so on the UJC site.

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Jon is a freelance writer and novelist who learned to play poker after watching Rounders in year 9. He has been giving away his beer money at cards ever since. Currently he is based in Bristol where he makes sporadic donations to the occasional live tournament or drunken late night Zoom session. He ...Read more


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