by Alan McGuckin
Last year, I paired my close friend Robert Henderson of Lake Texoma with Gerald Swindle for Fish and Chips.
Robert is a small town, southern Oklahoma guy (originally from Comanche, OK) who now lives at Lake Texoma. Happily married to Brandi, two great kids, a construction supervisor for Solitaire Homes that loves to fish tournaments.
Why would I pair him with Swindle? Henderson always listed Swindle among his favorite pros. And just like Swindle, Henderson was a former small school athletic star, class clown, nail gun operating carpenter, high energy Spirit from a fairly poor family.
Most of all I saw a chance to give Henderson, the epitome of the 'common man who never got to be a pro' -- the chance to taste it -- if only for a weekend.
Total strangers two days prior to the 2009 Fish & Chips -- Swindle and Henderson hit it off well -- they've become friends.
This year they competed again in Fish & Chips. Henderson is a great poker player (Swindle is not.)
Henderson was awarded the 2010 Fish & Chips MVP award among all 100 pro and amateur competitors.
Why? Nobody had a combined higher average score than Henderson's 4th overall in poker and 2nd overall in fishing.
He tasted it, alright. He cried -- couldn't speak on stage when Mark Jeffreys made the MVP presentation.
Two Quantum guys 'done good'.
One dream come true for Henderson.