This is the second part of a two part interview with Alex ‘Kanu7’ Millar’. To read the first part, click here.
Tell me an interesting fact about yourself that not many people know?
“I only became a poker pro because I messed up the final interview for the job I wanted after university and decided to play poker for a year and then re-apply. It was one of those interviews where you have to tell a story where you have shown good leadership skills, a story where you have shown the ability to solve problems in a team, etc. They asked three questions that I wanted to give the same story for and that cost me the job. At the time, I thought it was a run bad. Who knows what my life would look like now if they had asked better questions for me in that interview.”
What is your favourite book and why?
“I barely read these days actually, so I’m not sure. I used to read a lot when I was younger, all sorts of genres and I’d say my favourite series was a fantasy epic called “The Wheel of Time”. I guess I’m a sucker for an epic good vs. evil book/film, not sure what that says about me. Nowadays I tend to finish a long day of poker and often prefer the easier option of watching something to reading.”
What has held you back from being, even more, successful in the past?
“It depends on what you count as success. There’s a chance that I could have made a fair bit more money if I had made an effort to travel around and play in big live games in Vegas/Macau, etc. so you could maybe say that. On the other hand, though, maybe I wouldn’t have got anywhere with that, and it would have undoubtedly cost me regarding the improvements in my game that I have made while working hard online, so it’s hard to say for sure. From a non-financial perspective, I am not sure that I would be happier if I had done that, even if I had made some more money, so I’m not beating myself up about missed opportunities.”
What are the biggest problems you encounter on a daily basis?
“Not having enough time and staying on a reasonable sleep pattern. I always feel like I could do with some more hours in the day to fit everything in that I want to do and perhaps partly for that reason, I often end up going to bed later and later every night. Also, one night of good poker games making me go to sleep late leads to me being on a bad sleep pattern for quite a while.”
Just locked myself in my bathroom with no phone and gf not due home for hours, had to climb onto sink and out window #highstakeslife— Alex Millar (@Kanupoker) November 10, 2015
What apps or pieces of software do you use to make life easier?
“I am the worst with technology. I got an app called AnyDO which is a to-do list app. That should be useful, but currently, I have 20 items on the to-do list for today, most of which have been on there for months. I am a lost cause.”
What is the most efficient habit you have picked up?
“I have no efficient habits. Unless you count eating and working at the same time which is often pretty much forced upon me by good games and hunger coinciding.”
What is your worst?
“Snoozing my alarm in the morning.”
Who is the most overrated person you know and why?
“I don’t know, in general, the most overrated people are those who have had financial success and think that makes them better than everyone else. It doesn’t and if you think it does you become a worse human being pretty much instantly.”
When was the last time you were intimidated or afraid and why?
“I can’t think of a time, maybe something at school or maybe I just forget these things quickly. Maybe just a sign I need to get out more.”
What song might people be surprised is on ‘Millar’s Greatest Hits’ and why is it there?
“I’m not sure what people expect to find there haha! The Scientist by Coldplay is my all time favourite for tilt avoidance. It was always my go to song for if I was down a bunch of buy-ins in an HU session or something, stick that on and take some deep breaths and I could focus again. A while back I heard on the radio someone talking about some songs having a beat in line with a resting heartbeat and that those songs were great for calming you down if you were feeling stressed. They mentioned The Scientist as one of those songs. I have no idea if that’s a load of rubbish or not, but I have never looked it up because I’m happy to believe it!”
Would you give money to a starving child in Africa or a homeless person in your city centre, and explain your choice?
“Both are good, and I do give a bit each month to charities that help both. It’s hard to pick one and explain why without belittling the other. Anyone can fall on hard times, and I think we should do more to help people who become homeless. When faced with a stark choice between the two I would go for the starving child in Africa though because they have less of a chance through any other source.”
If I gave you 10,000 hours to work on anything what would it be and why?
“So tough, in reality, I guess I do have 10,000 hours to do whatever I want in the next few years so the real answer is that I’d do whatever I’m going to do anyway. If I got this magical time outside of reality, I would either spend it on some major charity project or on starting the business with the highest EV I can think of to be able to have more money in the future to help do something worthwhile. I’d get way more enjoyment/satisfaction out of that, and it’d be way more worthwhile than getting really good at a musical instrument or something. Then again, that’s kind of just my plan at some point when I retire from poker anyway.”
Give my 14-year old teenage son some advice.
“I think it’s hard to give blanket advice without knowing someone’s situation. Great advice for one person is bad advice for another, and I’m not going to pretend that I have solved life at the age of 30. When I was 14, I thought everything was a much bigger deal than it was. Now I take a step back and think about how significant whatever it is I’m worried about is compared to all the other issues that the other billions of people in the world have on this one tiny planet in the universe. Perspective is important I think. It doesn’t mean that the things you do don’t matter, everything matters, just don’t beat yourself up too badly and worry too much over things that you will have largely forgotten about in a few years time. Like I said, though, take that for what it’s worth and decide whether it is good advice to you or not.”