LEX LIVE 3: Meet ‘Driftinator’, who’ll celebrate his 21st birthday with Lex and the community
In the build-up to the highly anticipated Lex Live 3, we’ll be introducing you to a different member of Lex Veldhuis’ Twitch community every week.
This week, our guest is ‘Driftinator’.
‘Driftinator’ was born, raised and currently resides on the eastside of Norway. A prominent member of the Beaker Army, he’ll be attending Lex Live 3 in London in April with an extra reason to live it up.
“I actually turn 21 years old just three days before the event starts,” he tells us. “So I guess we can count it as a celebration as well!”
As well as in Lex’s chat, you may also have seen ‘Driftinator’ streaming on Twitch, as just like last week’s guest ‘RichyRob’, he was busy grinding throughout the #DaretoStream competition.
We caught up with ‘Driftinator’ to find out how he discovered poker, what he’s looking forward to at LL3, and what exactly an SMT line operator does.
PokerStars Blog: Hey ‘Driftinator’. For a bit of background, how did you first discover Lex?
Driftinator: Hey! Well, I come from a long history of gaming. I first started watching Twitch back in 2012 when I was heavily into Minecraft. Jumping a few years forward, I learnt about poker in the fall of 2018 from a friend at one of our house parties. I was curious if there was any poker content being broadcasted on Twitch and, to my surprise, there was!
I wasn’t too thrilled seeing people play online back then, but I was watching a ton of runitup247. The Big Game was what I enjoyed the most. All the episodes replay over and over of course, so eventually, the episodes with Lex came on while I was watching. I remember so well a few people in the chat were getting a bit hyped that he was on, and I, not knowing who he was at the time, simply asked “Who is Lex?” in the chat. All I got back was a smug “lol”, and that’s when I knew I had a lot to learn about the scene.
A fresh-faced Lex Veldhuis battles against a fresh-faced Justin Bonomo while a fresh-faced Doyle Brunson looks on (The Big Game, 2010)
What do you enjoy most about watching Lex on Twitch?
At first, being the complete noob that I was, I tried to soak up as much info as I could by focusing on the gameplay. Relatively, I’m less of a noob today, although still very new to the game. I’m much more engaged with the chat nowadays while still following the hands. The overall atmosphere of the stream is very relaxed and inclusive, which I very much enjoy. If I want to lean back and just chill while listening to the music and conversation I can do just that, and if I want to be interactive and mess about in the chat I can do that too.
The mix between educational gameplay, solid background music and the interaction between both the streamer and chat just makes a very good atmosphere that I enjoy watching as often as I can.
Do you play poker yourself?
I am an active player both online and live. I average around eight tournaments per day, but that’s because I tend to grind for long periods of time once I start a session. I definitely don’t play every day though, mostly because I always try to enter a session with the right mindset and energy. Those things don’t always exist after a day of work.
I started playing play money games and eventually moved to real money micro stakes. After a while of playing, losing and slowly learning bits and bobs I figured I wanted to understand a little more about the game. I grabbed the chance when Lex had a promotion for a sizable discount on the RaiseYourEdge Masterclass. I’m not the greatest student by any means, and I feel like I could be putting more effort into studying because it’s definitely helped me so far.
I still stick to the micro stakes sit & gos and tournaments, with the occasional $7.50 or $11 shot, but I’m enjoying slowly grinding my way up while learning on the way.
What about outside of poker?
I’m a gamer at heart, so a lot of my time definitely gets soaked up by that. I play a variety of games. Recently I fell in love with the Lego Star Wars games again that I played a lot as a kid. The nostalgia and excellent gameplay make it a really fun ride to try and reach that 100% mark.
I’m not the most extroverted guy. I’m fine spending the Saturday night at home chilling and watching a series, movie or Twitch, but I do like a night out with my friends.
As for work, I am a fulltime SMT line operator for the biggest employer in my area. I finished my two-year apprenticeship last fall and was fortunate enough to get a fulltime position instantly.
For those who don’t know–including me–what does an SMT line operator do?
An SMT line is, very simply explained, an automatic production line that mounts electrical components onto a printed circuit board, making it a functional part of a product.
A simple example of a circuit board product that most people can relate to is the graphics card inside your computer. Our company produces many types of circuit boards, and a few products we complete inhouse, for a wide variety of customers. Even a few military-grade ones.
What does being a part of Lex Veldhuis’ community mean to you?
I’ve gotten to know a bunch of nice people already in this short amount of time, even though I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting them yet. Compared to other big games on Twitch, the Poker directory is very small, and I feel like that makes us more tightly knit together. Although Lex has one of the biggest channels in the directory, you see familiar names all the time in other channels.
It’s really awesome to me that we can have this friendly community around a game that I’ve started to care a lot about in recent time. It makes it a lot more enjoyable to spend time on it.
Have you attended a Lex Live event?
I have not. I actually qualified for the Lex Live 2 Main Event from an online satellite last year just for fun, but I hadn’t planned far enough ahead and hadn’t considered vacation days, travel and accommodation, so I chose to skip it and instead plan better for next time.
We look forward to seeing you at Lex Live 3 then! What are you most excited about?
I really look forward to finally meet everyone I’ve met online through Twitch so far! I feel like I’m good friends with a bunch, but actually getting to interact in the real world rather than through a monitor is a step forward that I think will be very nice.
I also look forward to the actual poker. There aren’t too many opportunities to play live poker in Norway, so I try to grab every chance I get. I’m not as familiar with the live scene in Norway as a few of the old-timers are, so getting to play 10 days straight with people I already have a good relationship with is going to be awesome for sure.
Finally, do you have any goals for the future, poker or otherwise?
I’m a ‘live in the moment’ kind of guy. I tend to not worry too much about the past and future. My only near-future plan is to keep grinding work and to keep learning things in poker while trying to increase my bankroll. I also started streaming a ton during the #DareToStream challenge and really enjoyed it. I’ve continued into the new year and will definitely keep going.
Article originally posted on PokerStars Blog
by Jack Stanton