Women and Gambling

Jan Fisher can tell if somebody has played poker for too long: it is called a sniff test. Basically, when somebody's body odor gets very bad, it is time for them to throw in the cards.

Fisher's personal record of playing currently stands at 24 hours non-stop, but this hasn't happened in 2 decades.

Linda Johnson played the game for around 32 hours non-stop and regularly played for half a day each time in California since there were low betting limits and it would take a while to earn proper money.

This pair is based in Las Vegas and they no longer need to stay for hours on end while playing because they are highly successful and talented at the game now.

They also happen to be extremely shrewd business women and are credited as marketing geniuses for their work in the biggest online poker website in the world, partypoker.com.

If you could see them, you wouldn't think Johnson and Fisher are actually poker champions. They do not exude any glitz and glamor whatsoever. They dress in modest slacks and blouses and look like regular people in the neighborhood who get together for Hearts games.

Linda Johnson's Story

Johnson's story began in California. She worked at a mailing office at 21 and went to Las Vegas once to play some blackjack. That's when she learned to love it and when she got home, her father advised her to try out poker instead since more skill was required in the game.

She then began to read books and learn more about the game. At work, she played with friends and soon, nobody wanted to anymore.

A decade later and still working at a mailing office, she decided to join the Vegas Poker World Series and promised herself that if she won third place, she would leave her job to play full-time.

Although she came in fifth, she still quit and ended up moving to Las Vegas. She hasn't looked back since then and played competitively for more than a decade before becoming a poker manager.

Now called "poker's first lady," she plays thrice a week if she isn't traveling.

She believes that successful players of the game need to be mathematicians who can calculate odds and card combinations, psychologists who can read opponents, and people who are patient and evenly tempered.