When I first started in poker (back in 2004), I had never imagined that it would become my profession for more than 10 years. I had just gotten my Ph.D. in power electronics and was looking for jobs, but the economy was not the best, my area of research was too theoretical to be of use for most companies, also at that point I kind of sucked at job hunting and promoting myself, so the best I could find was a temporary adjunct professor position at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana which didn’t pay much. Since I had a student visa in the United States (in the stage of so-called optional practical training), I was not allowed to look for other employment. I definitely wanted to make more money though, so I was seeking legitimate opportunities. On most weekends, I’d go to local chess tournaments and usually win a few hundred dollars, which certainly helped but wasn’t enough.