Nobel, shnobel. The real money's in poker

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October 16, 2005|By LAURA VOZZELLA

The University of Maryland has been crowing all week about some professor who got a phone call from Sweden.

Well, they're missing the really big deal.

"I tell you what, there was a time in my life when I played a lot of poker," he said. "It was a long time ago, during the [second World] War. I was living in Santiago, Chile, and I had a job as night watchman in the U.S. embassy."

(Night watchman? Shouldn't this guy have been cracking codes?)

"I worked Friday nights. I'd sleep Saturday mornings, and as soon as lunch was over, we'd clear the table and get out the cards and play poker until nine the next morning. Then we'd go to a Child's restaurant and have pancakes."

So was the master game theoM-W rist a killer poker player? "I won more than I lost."

Pimp My Cruiser

You can say one thing about Baltimore's top cop: He's got street cred.

At least his car does.

When it came time for Commissioner Leonard Hamm to pick his official wheels, he went the way of Nelly, Carmelo Anthony, Mannie Fresh, Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins and other assorted hip-hop artists, pro athletes and professional bad boys.

They're all cruising in Dodge Magnums.

It's not your father's Chrysler.

The Detroit News has noted "the rap world's fondness" for the wagon and Chrysler 300 sedan, "whose in-your-face designs have offered an ideal palette for the oversized wheels, special front grilles and other accessories that have become the calling cards of the hip-hop crowd."

And at least one big-city police chief.

A BusinessWeek review calls the Magnum "a hit with critics and dealers."

They meant car dealers, but it's true enough for the dealer dealers who should be putting the pedal to the metal when they see the chief coming, not flashing their headlights in a friendly dude!-we've-got-the-same-car greeting.

The city spent $23,000 on the car, which is black and, for the record, has police lights but no spinners.

(If you're wondering, Ed Norris had an Expedition and Kevin Clark had a Suburban.)

"He chose the car because it is reasonably priced and performs well," said police spokesman Matt Jablow.

Jablow said the commish wasn't interested in chatting about his Magnum.

Maybe it shouldn't be a surprise that Hamm would go for a flashy car.

Known as a sharp dresser, Hamm graduated from the PhilM-W adelphia College of Textiles and Science and worked briefly as a fabric designer before his career swerved into law enforcement.

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