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'Poker Face' does more than top the charts
Don't be surprised if you see a lot more poker players bluffing with their muffins at the World Series of Poker this year.
Lady Gaga's song "Poker Face," in which the 23-year-old pop starlet lays claim to just that sort of trickery, is now the No. 1 single in the United Kingdom and No. 2 in the United States.
The song features a dog's breakfast of gambling metaphors and sexual innuendo, with Gaga (born Stefani Germanotta) going for broke with such lyrics as:
"I wanna hold'em like they do in Texas please // Fold 'em let 'em hit me raise it baby stay with me."
"Luck and intuition play the cards with spades to start // And after he's been hooked I'll play the one that's on his heart."
And, of course,
"I won't tell you that I love you, kiss or hug you // 'Cause I'm bluffin' with my muffin, I'm not lying I'm just stunning with my love glue-gunning."
The song's insidiously catchy chorus has propelled it to No. 1 on pop charts in such diverse markets as Canada, Belgium, Norway and Switzerland, and features Gaga proclaiming that her would-be lover "Can't read [her], can't read [her], no he can't read [her] poker face."
So is the song an attempt to cash in on the poker craze? Or will it further contribute to poker's mainstream appeal?
"I'd say it won't make any more fish play, but it definitely aids poker in being a bit more mainstream," said poker pro Adam "Roothlus" Levy, one of the few posters on the 2+2 forums to come out in favor of the song.
"With the growing popularity of Lady Gaga, it can only enhance the public's image of poker," he said.
"Is Lady Gaga good for poker?" said poker pro Bryan "The Icon" Micon. "Yes. Anything that gets poker out over the mainstream and makes it look cool and glamorous is definitely good for poker."
As for whether the song will bring more new money to the tables, Micon claims to have firsthand proof of the song's effectiveness as bait.
"Actually, I was sitting here, drunk, outside of [Las Vegas nightclub] Pure last night, and they were blasting 'Poker Face,'" he told PokerListings.com.
"Pure is right next to the poker room, and there were actually people coming out of the club and banging their heads to the song like, 'Ahhh, Poker Face!' and then looking over at the poker room and being like 'Ahhh, poker!' That actually happened."
The video, which features Gaga hitting runner-runner quad aces in a rubber-suited strip poker party, was filmed at the luxury villa on bwin's PokerIsland and features bwin logos prominently throughout.
The 2+2 community, at least, has taken note.
"Nice bwin adverts in there," wrote poster DaExMan. "All the fish are going to [the] Ongame [Network] imo."
"When this hits MTV I might have to change to bwin," poster youcanhaveitall agreed.
Time will tell whether bwin poker - and the poker community at large - will reap the benefits of Lady Gaga's rise up the pop charts.
But until Tiesto remixes "The Gambler," it appears the YouTube generation has found its de facto poker anthem.