Tuesday, January 31, 2006

SnG update

I finished the first 10 SnGs of the experiment. Results are OK. Not fantastic but not terrible. I netted $130. That consisted of playing at PokerStars and PokerRoom in either $10 or $20 tables. Where I played depended on the wait and how I was feeling on my game. More specifically I finished first twice, second one, and third 3 times. My worst finish was 6th.

Seems weird but my two wins were the last two I played. One for $10, the other for $20. After having a mixed Sunday, I had taken Monday off and was unsure of my game. So I hit PStars for the 10 spot. The table was very weak. Though I felt like I was easily the best player at the table, I wasn't chipping up that much. I hit a high spot of 2700 before I bled out some chips to 2 slow players. They didn't get much off of me, but the pre-raise flop and continuation bet put a hurting on me. So much that when I made a great call with 10s vs 9s and got sucked out on the river, I was down to 466. With 4 left, I focused on the game, feeling confident that I was the best player and would at the minimum take 2nd.

So I went on a tear. I got lucky with a triple up when a pair of Jacks was good to take the main pot. Then I kept pushing on my passive opponents until I got up into second. When we went heads up, my opponent had a 5 to 1 lead on me. Instead of keeping the pressure on me, he let me see too many flops. Of course, I did get lucky when he pushed with A K and I happened to have A A. From there, I put the pressure on him until all the chips came my way.

Just before the PStars tourney game ended, I fired up PokerRoom and jumped into a $20 game there. I had to keep the rush going. When you feel you game is on high, you need to sit and play. I chipped up early and got a double when someone pushed with top pair weak kicker. A flopped straight in the BB a bit later helped as well.

But I think the key at this table was being in charge. I kept raising with good hands in the blinds and being the first to the pot. I had a nice lead when we got to 4. One guy then got on a bit of a rush himself. But A Q saved me again when the flop came A high. He bet into me and I check-raised back. I pushed on the turn to cripple him. I kept the pressure on the small stack, though I let them back into the game with a stupid call. But I was determined not to drop this one like the other person had dropped one to me. 4 hands later it was over and I was the victor.

If only I had done better in the Wil Wheaton Penner invitational. I did not play good there at all.

I will get back on the horse tomorrow. My focus will be soley on the $20 tables now. Depending on the success of the next 10, I will be looking forward to moving up to the $30s.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Not much to talk about

Work took over last week. I didn't play much poker at all. Thus there has been little to talk about.

I have started playing various SnGs to get back in the groove. Results have been a bit mixed so far. I will have more to say when I get 10.

I did manage to finally watch the Phil Gordan DVD I received at the Winter Classic. You know the one that has the banner at the top every day. Bill Rini had hooked us up with a free copy and did a review back in July.

I really liked the approach they took with the video. As Bill said, it entertains and gives instruction. Phil gives some good advice but he also tells you exactly what is going through his mind.


You know how it is. You have a flop and you bet it out hoping the other play will fold. As you wait you think "fold fold fold fold fold". Phil actually says that. He "speaks" on the good flops and bad flops that hit him. He even calls a guy jerk.

I thought by doing this, going through the exact process even though it seems like filler, I could relate to exactly what he was thinking. He explanations on various topics helps an intermediate player like myself. I would be shocked if others couldn't pick something out of it.

I anticipate having some sort of early report on the SnG project mid week. Until then, go read Dr. Pauly or the Spaceman do their reports from the big tournaments.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006


I haven't played much poker over the last couple of days. Been busy with other things and lacked any real interest in hunkering down. You know how it is, if your mind isn't in the game, your money won't be in your roll much longer. What little poker I did play was at the Razz tables where I eked out small gains in short sessions.

I am still wrestling with focus. Do I want to focus on tournament play or get my ring game back in shape? What is the goal, to play better poker or to build the bankroll higher? Yeah, better poker will lead to the higher bankroll. But you can get a higher bankroll by playing tournaments instead of grinding it out on the ring games.

Thus to get some focus back, I am looking at doing two things. I am going back to my roots. When I started tracking what I was doing a year ago, I had deposited $100 to play just SnGs. I did well with it and worked to over $5k by the end of the year when I expanded to other games. Lately, another blogger (my apologies to whoever thought this up. Let me know who you are and I will give you credit) wrote about managing money so they could enter a WSOP event come summertime. They talked about playing SnGs and separating a portion of their winnings out towards that goal. I have decided to follow the path.

I figure to still play MTT as well, but will begin to work in more cash SnGs along the way. I am going to start with $10 tables first, with the goal of working up to the $20s. I have always had success at the $10 level, but not quite as much at $20. I figure I will play at least 5 of the smaller entry before hopping up to the higher level. I will post results after 10 are done. This time I will actually record results rather than just watching a bankroll level.

What I haven't decided is where to play yet. It is between PokerStars and PokerRoom. Difference is playing a 9 or 10 person table. PStars seems softer so I am leaning that way.

The goal is to earn enough to enter a nice sized tournament. If I stay focused, I am confident I can get there.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

And over the cliff!

On Sunday afternoon, it dawn on me that I was in the poker zone. My tournament play was feeling spot on. I had made 3 final tables in a row, getting cash in 1 and an entry to a bigger buy-in in another. I had won 2 other SnGs. I felt I was playing great.

Even a suckout in a Sunday morning SnG that sent me out in 9th couldn't dampen my spirits. I came right back to win a buy-in into a $200k guaranteed tourney on PokerRoom.

But at the end of the first hour, it came crashing down. I chased a flush (had 6 to 1 odds) that didn't hit. It hurt. But on the next hand I chased again with Q 10 suited, another hand I despise, and gave up more chips. From there I was blinded off.

At that moment, I felt like I fell over a cliff. The rush was gone.

Last night I felt the sting a bit more. A tremendous kick to the jewels was delivered when I flopped a full house. All bets were in on the river and I lost to the higher fullhouse.

I then made my decision to not play ring games at Full Tilt. For whatever reason, I just cannot win. The beats come again and again for me there. Now, I know that it just seems that way as we always remember the beats more than the big pots we drag in, but my PokerTracker stats back it up.

I love the tournaments no matter what others say about the structure being atrocious. The play is pretty damn soft and winning tokens to play the nightly guarantees is easy. I wish they would introduce higher token games than the $69+6. Having just one of those late night doesn't work for an early morning working guy like me.

I did hear a funny comment from a friend of mine that also plays on Full Tilt. From along the lines of "online poker is rigged", he swears up and down that if you buy into a tournament with a token you will not win. No matter what. The site doesn't want tokens winners to win the tourneys because they don't make any money that way. Though I tried to point out they made their money on the token paying SnGs, he wasn't hearing it. Nothing you can say to change their minds.

Noble gave me $20 to lure me back. I have started to play some low blinds NL there to strengthen that portion of my game. I have been donking a bit taking it up to $55 but back down to $26. I am hoping to go on a nice rush like BadBlood did and cash something decent out. Or I will just toss it into a guaranteed tourney there though they are rather weak.

Any which way, I need to find my way out of the short funk I fell into. I feel one of the FTP tournies calling my name tonight.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Card cemetery

I didn't really know where I was going. I found the church ok and parked two blocks away. It appeared to be a typical south side Polish neighborhood. I followed some old dudes figuring they knew where they were going.

The Smoker was going on inside the adjoining school's gymnasium. A Smoker is the term church's use for a social gathering where you play cards. Typically a bunch of old men are sitting at tables playing cards and smoking bad cigars. There are all kinds of games going on around the room. Sheepshead, cribbage, euchre, stud. You find what you want to play ask to sit on in. For $9 at the door, I was allowed in and access to all the beer I wanted. There would be food later too.

I headed towards the corner where they were signing people up for the Hold Em tournament. I signed in at #40. It was believed they would cut it off at 64. Interest was high and they started up with 80. Not too bad.

I was excited to be playing in a local tourney again. I hadn't played one probably since the Badger Poker days. Maybe I should drop in on one of those again.

I took my seat assignment at Table 5, seat 4. I scanned the table to make a quick assessment of what I might be up against. The guy my left was the spitting image of Frank Costanza. Each time I looked at him I wanted to yell Serenity Now or Hoochie Mama! He was a nice guy though so I kept it to myself. Next was hyper active guy. Had the look that he kinda knew what he was doing but isn't as good as he thinks he is. The librarian was next. He always looked aloof and could be read like a book. An old guy was on his right who was a total calling station, next was total dead money guy, and then Bradley Center.

Bradley Center was a young guy chain smoking his Camels. He was one of those who acted like he knew what he was doing, throwing out the names of hands, and making chip movements like he would bet and stuff. Basically he looked like everything he learned about poker was from watching it on TV. The only thing he lacked was the sunglasses. But he quite proud of his gig working at the Bradley Center (Milwaukee's hockey/basketball arena) stocking the suites. He was happy he didn't have to do much and got paid $11 to do so.

Next to BC was an older guy who was pretty aggressive. A non descript guy next to him and finally on my immediate right was an older lady.

I got a great impression on how this game was going to go on the first hand. 6 people in the hand. Whoooooooo Party Poker! The librarian ended up winning with two pair, aces and queens. Oh, the aces were pocket rockets! He limped in from the button with 3 others with A A. He then made agonizing calls on each street. It wasn't an act either. Oh boy! I watched this go for a bit. Rarely any preflop raises at the table. So when I got A Q a couple of hands in, I immediately popped it to 175 (25/50). Frank Costanza called as did the lady who had limped under the gun. Flop was all rags. I made my continuation bet and took down the pot.

I believed I also succeeded in setting an image for myself with that play as well. Tight and solid. Each time I entered a pot with a raise, I got respect and started to chip up. I used this to my advantage too. With the flow of the game and my image established, I loosened up. And suited paint was played with an opening bet. I ran into trouble only once when the old calling station hit his straight on the river (J K 10 9 on board) and I was trying to buy a pot with A 9.

My favorite early hand involved dead money guy and hyper active dude. Dead money made a min raise UTG. If any betting was happening, it was min bets and raises. No understanding of pot odds to how to bet going on. Hyper called and they see a flop of A 9 9. Hyper active immediately pushes all in. Pot was about 300 and he bet 1100. Makes sense. Dead money thinks and calls showing A K. I laughed when hyper showed 7 9 suited for trips. It held up and dead money had one green chip left. He then laments to the old calling station that he had no choice. He had to call there. Two others chime in that it was the right move. I laughed some more at that. I knew hyper active dude had the 9. It was like the Full Tilt commercial. There were bells and whistles going off all over the place. Laying A K down was such a easy play there. It is way too early to make that stupid call.

Just before the break for food, I chipped up nicely in one hand with Costanza. Blinds were up to 100/200. With J 10, I went in for steal. I made a 3 1/2xs raise. Costanza called on the button and the blinds went away. Flop came Q J 7. I bet out 700, but suddenly Costanza raised me 500 more (yeah, it was the size of my bet but I wasn't going to argue). The raise knocked me back. Huh? Am I running into trouble here? I called. Turn is a 10. As much as I like the card, I hate it too. I check. Costanza bets 500. And I go right into the tank! I took probably a minute and a half before I made my move. I looked at him and tried to figure out what he was playing. The range of hands he could have was small to me. Did he flop a set of 7s? He would call the preflop bet with that. Did he have Q J? I think so. If so, I am dominated. I ruled out A K, even though he would have just smooth called the raise, but I don't think he would have raised on the flop for a 4 outer. I finally put him on K Q and called. If he then bet the river, I would have to consider pushing or folding. River was a rag. I checked as did Frank. He showed Q 3 suited and took a good pot. Whew!

We then had a break for food. I headed in to take a piss. I found the restroom to be interesting. I chuckled at the door that read "Boys". The little sinks were cute too. I then went into the cafeteria to grab some chow. They had mashed potatoes, German potato salad and green beans in the front. After that, it was sausage central. There was Polish sausage. Slovenian sausage, and Croatian sausage, both mild and hot. There was chicken too, but I didn't care. The sausage was damn good. These old ladies can cook. It was probably made by members of the parish. Kudos to them!

After eating, I lost that hand to the calling station which set me back a bit. I then tried to make a move on one of the new guys at the table. With J 10 suited, I raised it up again. I got called by the new in the BB. Flop was 8 Q x. He bet out. Ok. I bet, he called. Turn was another 8. This time he bet out. Is he holding an 8? His bet was 500, too small for the pot. I had a good feeling here and called. River was a 9. I hit my gutshot. He checked and I pushed. He called with A Q. I doubled up and was happy.

During that first hour, we kept having people get knocked out. Bradley Center lasted about a half hour when he tried to bluff the hyper active guy. Hyper knocked 3 people out collecting $20 bounties on them. I collected none. I knocked people out after the bounties were gone. Old aggressive dude was gone in about 20 minutes as was the lady on my right. And it was all on very poor play. There were chasing or drawing dead each time.

They then broke down our table. I knew the game was about to change when I sat across from my friend Brian. I know he plays and I expected to see some aggression at the table. That is exactly what I saw. There were some younger guys here. The Miller man had some chips but looked like was about to fall asleep. The old guy was a non factor. Marquette had some big stacks and was trying to control the table. Acme hat was quiet and would show himself to be a push monkey. The chick at the table was really tight. She had a tomboy look and a nice rack. She liked to play these tourneys and was having a good time. Much better than the boyfriend who sweated her and just wanted to go home.

I watched the action for a bit until I jumped in with 10 10 in MP. It folded to Marquette who went through all stages of anguish before slamming his chips in the middle. All the time he was fretting, I thought about what he might have. Any big pair was out. A K too. Maybe A Q or A J or A 10. I finally settled with A x. Flop was K Q 10, two diamonds. He quickly pushed. I waited 2 seconds before calling. I was confident I had him here. His slamming of the chips was all I needed to see. As I tossed my 10s up, I asked to see A J, the nuts. Instead he showed 7 5 suited. Before the turn was shown, he was already stacking chips to move to me. That was a big double through for me. It put me around 10,000 and a comfortable spot with around 20 left. An old guy with glasses was moved in. He claimed to be new at this but his play said otherwise. He was aggressive and made bigger bets. He and I went to battle on some small pots and talked a bit between hands.

One interesting hand did come up. I am pretty sure I was right, though not 100%. Blinds are 200/400. I was in the SB. Glasses limped UTG. Next guy to act was a short stack. He goes all in for 600 total. It folds around to me. I have crap and toss the cards. The BB calls the 200. Now UTG wants to raise. I said he couldn't raise, because the bet that was made was half a bet. It had to be full bet for him to be allowed to re-raise. Of course, no one agreed. They call the tourney guys over and we explain the situation. They say he can. I tell them I am pretty sure they are wrong, but hey, I am not even involved in the hand so what does it matter to me? Now UTG goes and raises all in, which is called by the BB. He then shows 2 2! WTF? Amazingly, it held up. But can anyone tell me who is right here? I believe that any opening bet had to be full raise in order for any other raises behind to occur. I think I will go post this question over at Poker Works. Hopefully, Linda or someone else in the biz can give me the correct ruling.

I won a couple more small pots before we moved to two tables. Most of the table I was at moved as well. At this table I was able to drop the Hammer. Well, ok, I didn't really "drop" it. I caught it in the BB and saw the flop for free. Flop gave me an OESD. I checked as did the limper. Turn was a rag. I went to make a move and bet 2/3 of his stack. Amazing he just called. River was a 4 giving me my straight. I pushed and he showed top pair. I threw my cards down, announcing Hammer Time! and dragged the pot. I smiled as I saw the shocked looks from around the table.

I would win just one more big pot at this table. I was up against the spectacled man with the deuces. I had raised it up in MP with K Js. He called from the BB. Flop was A high. I bet out and he called. Turn was a rag. I bet out again. He grabbed a stack of chips and played with them in his hand. He set them down and picked up his cards. As he played with the cards, he flashed one to me. A deuce. There was a 2 on the board. He was calling with bottom pair? He called. I fire again on the river when a rag hit. He folded. At this point, I had somewhere around 30,000 I believe which put in the top 3 overall. With 12 of us left, I was going to make money. My friend even commented I could fold to the money. Yeah, but I wanted to wield that stack to get more.

When we got down to 11, they decided to consolidate to the final table. Ten would pay. I looked around and saw 3 tiny stacks. Blinds are 1000/2000 at this point. I was in seat 11 so I was right behind the button so I didn't need to play until a couple people were knocked out. The tiny stacks played so tight. In fact, 2 of them basically blinded themselves out. One guy posted the small blind and have just 1000 behind. He folded instead of calling and having a chance to triple up. Finally the chick showed some balls and moved her 3000 only to be knocked out on the bubble. I just couldn't believe those guys played like total wimps. They got their money back though so who is to question it.

Now my friend had pointed out I could just fold into the money. That is what happened. I didn't have to play a hand for a while. But I wanted to play. I just never caught any cards. It was a total card cemetery for me at this final table. The best I saw was A 5. In EP. Q 10 in late position looked good but there was a big raise in front of me. Otherwise I had total crap. Plus it seemed the blinds were going up whenever they felt like raising them. And they ran out of beer. Could it get any worse?

People were dropping like flies. The worst player at the table was also sucking out big time! He would raise with ATC, call down with absolutely nothing but catch on the river, and just suck out again and again. It was ugly.

And all this time I have nothing. The first time the blinds come to me they were suddenly 3000/6000. It hadn't even been a full orbit. I had to fold to a big raise in each blind with crap. The next time they come around they are 5000/10000. We are down to 4 now and I haven't played single hand at this final table. I am blinded out in the SB. I manage to double up with K high, but then the suckout artist hits his gutshot straight on the next hand to knock me out in 4th. I would have had 3rd but the short stack got lucky 3 hands earlier.

Fourth place got me $250 so I am not complaining. I just cannot believe how card dead I was. I don't think I was playing super tight either. When the action was to me, I had bad cards. If I had an A, I was either in EP or there was action ahead of me. I was somewhat content to let them knock the others out and push me up the money ladder, but I wanted to be able to fight too. That never happened.

I did witness some very soft poker all night. When the guys paid me and said "See you at the next one", I quickly assured them I would be. I would say that half the field was bad. The other half maybe has 10 good players while the other had a clue on just how to survive.

There is another tournament next week that I have contingent plans to hit. Should be just as juicy.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Another final table...

but no cash.

I played a qualifier for the Full Tilt $200k on Saturday. Was kicking some ass too. Was the leader after the first hour. Never went below 3rd in the second hour. But couldn't hit anything in the 3rd and went out at 9th.

Top two got into the tourney and down to 5th paid cash.

I did spend some time at the first table with factgirl. We talked a bit about how great the WPBT tourney in Vegas was last month. It seems so long until the next one this summer. And as much as the Imperial Palace seemed to be one big clusterfuck, they did a great job of hosting our tournament. Setting up a ballroom to play in, giving us an open bar, etc. They even had press releases for the game. It was a blast.

So even though I got nothing out of the tournament last night, I feel good about my game. I also played the cheap ($4) SnG during the first hour, coming in 1st and winning the $26 token (I now have 3 of those stored up). All in a warmup for tonight's church game. I figure there will be around 30-40 people in this. Last one I played saw me as the bubble boy when I got rivered by an a-hole with a poor call. This time will be different. I intend to play a bit more aggressively, especially if I can chip up early. There should be bounties ($10) on the first 15 people or so, so I intend to make my buy in back there. Hopefully enough cards come my way to do so. If not, well, you can find me by the beer tap the rest of the night.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Not bad, but could have been better

PokerStars Tournament #17845159,
No Limit Hold'em Buy-In: $20.00/$2.00
180 players
Dear S.t.B, You finished the tournament in 7th place.
A $126.00 award has been credited to your Real Money account.
A ton of suckouts occurred in this game. I mean there were some real brutal beats. I was one of the victims at the final table when I called the all in raise from the really loose player. I had A Q. Him? 10 9. I hit my A on the flop but there is a 10 as well. He catches the two outer on the river. Oh well. Snakes on a plane.

I was happy with my play. I had doubled up in the first hour, mainly taking advantage of a loose player. Chipped up further in the second hour when I pushed against another loose guy with A Ks and he called with the most overplayed hand in online poker. A 10.

Beyond that I played aggressive poker, raising in position, putting out feeler bets, bullying weak players. I was doing well into I ran into A A at the final table. That led to the aforementioned hand and I was done in 7th.

I was shocked at how bad some of the people were too. I hadn't seen poker played this poorly in a long time. Guess I will have to come back tomorrow. It feels like a good warm up for Friday's festivities.
On a side note, has anyone played in the Ultimate Bet Poker Challenge tourneys at all? The small buy in that play for a spot at a TV SnG. I was going to pop some money over there but I had trouble logging in. That was 4 hours ago and I still haven't received my new password. I wonder if they closed my account because I had signed up with PokerShare?

Fancy play

The poker weekend was interesting. I couldn’t money in SnGs or tourneys to save my life. It was only 5 of them. In 4 of 5, I got my chips in with the best hand only to be sucked out on. It happens.

On Sunday, I somehow finished 2nd in a 2 tabler after starting the final table as the small stack. I then made up the rest of my losses playing 3/6. So the weekend was a push.

I did notice some interesting plays that are happening more frequently. It seems like the check-raise is the most popular move in low limit hold em. Everyone and their grandmother are constantly check-raising. In my opin, check raising in limit hold em is giving money away. There are only a couple of instances where I will check raise, but I bet the majority of the time when I have a hand. I want to build a pot. But if my hand is concealed well- say I flop trip 3s or 4s with an ace on the board- I will let the intial raiser go at it when I am 99% sure they will bet it. But a lot of people will raise pre-flop, watch the A or K hit and check, just hoping you will think they missed their flop. So it may get them one extra small bet? Stupid in my mind. Most players will call your bet anyways. Why try to give one away? Plus, you may just be trapping yourself.

The other funny move I saw a couple times was in tournament play. UTG limps. Someone else raises. UTG then re-raises all in and shows a medium pair or A K at best. I saw this play 3 times. Granted I know they are trying to represent A A or K K, but what they do not understand is that I have been watching them for the last 30 minutes. Your play has been crappy. For you to make this move doesn’t make sense. You have gained any respect from me to make me fold. Furthermore, why do you want to commit with hands that aren’t big favorites?

People trying to play fancy at low limits is amusing. They act like they are at the final table of the WSOP when there are 200 people left in a tournament. I wouldn’t be surprised if they are wearing sunglasses as they play as well.

I may be playing in a church tourney this Friday. From the email I received, it shoudn't be too big. Levels look to be good too. If you are in the Milwaukee area, drop me an email at StB31@hotmail if you are interested in playing. I will shoot you the details.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Did that really just happen?

I think we have all seen it happen at the virtual felt during SnGs or MTTs. Some guy is playing a lot of hands and hitting, usually on the river. No I am not talking about the Luckbox. I mean that play that will play any suited or any connector, calling all bets, hoping to hit their gutshot, which they usually do on the river. It drives me mad when I see it.

Or the lucky player who gets those guys chasing each hand that they don't hit and he is accumulating chips like he is stocking his bomb shelter. You watch dumb call after dumb call wondering why those morons don't make those moves against you.

It finally happened for me yesterday in a 2 table SnG on Stars. I was flabbergasted when they showed their cards at the end of the hand. Of course, I would end up bubbling when my A K got beat by A J (always seems to happen to me) but this isn't a bad beat story.

This is a did that really just happen story.

I am dealt A Q in the BB. MP limps as does the small blind. Blinds were 15/30. I pop it to 120. They both call. Flop is 10 K Q rainbow. SB bets 120. We both call. I think it is a weak bet that allows me a good chance to draw to the straight or A. If he had A K, he would have raised pre-flop.

The turn is a J. Boo yah! I have made my straight. There are two clubs on the board so a backdoor flush is possible. SB bets out only 120 again. I figure he may have an A as well now. But to find out I pop it up to 600. They both call. Huh? Great, I am up againt 2 others aces and the pot is going to get chopped.

River is the 8 of hearts. Nice. I have the nuts, but figure I am going to see a chop. This time the SB checks. I push all in hoping that one of these players is a total idiot and calls with crap. The MP instacalls me. Damn, there is the other ace. But the SB thinks a bit and then calls.

MP showed K 9 for the dummy end of the straight. Weird. Was willing to put in all those chips with the possibility of the ace high being out there. I would have folded or made a move on the turn. Then again, I wouldn't have been playing K 9 offsuit to that raise pre-flop.

SB turns over....K J? Way to read a board! How does anyone think that K J is good when you have been raised after you made two pair?

I was quite shocked when I saw those hands. Well, shocked and happy. Yes people, the poker boom is over and their is no more money to be made here.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

If he was as smart as he says he was....

he would have kept his mouth shut.

I have said before that I don't chat much. The majority of it is stupid trash talking that doesn't make any sense. There is only so much "you suck" and "nice catch idiot" that you can read.

Of course, if someone says that to me, I may just walk onto the dance floor and chat them up. If I can get them aiming for me, that will mean more dollars on my side.

I had this working on Full Tilt tonight. One guy got mad at me because his flopped pair of aces didn't hold up. It was a 6 max 3/6 table. I had opened from the cutoff with a raise holding K Q clubs. Only the BB called. Flop was J high. BB checked. I made the continuation bet. He raised and I called. I watched the guy for a while and he like to buy pots. Turn was a 10. I called his bet with my OESD. River was a A. I raised his bet and he called to show 2 pair. He then proceeded to call me an idiot for calling his turn bet. I was over 5.5 to 1 to call. If I hit, I get more. Plus it was possible I had the best hand at the turn (which I did).

Next guy started on me when I made it 3 bets to go in the 3 seat with A Qo. I hit my Q on the flop to beat his 9 9. He berated me for 3 betting with A Qo. I asked why he didn't cap the flop if his hand was so good, or ever bet out. He claimed he was 80% sure he was ahead. Again, I didn't know what I was doing. That I got lucky and couldn't play for shit. I told him I could prove I was smarter than he. I told him I was taking his money and leaving. I pocket $80 in about 15 minutes and left the table. (Note: This move was inspired by the Poker Geek)

Talking shit about a player isn't going to get you anywhere. Seeing that I was up, the best way to piss this guy off further was to leave. I know he won't learn the lesson and I sure hope he doesn't. He is on my list. He was quite a bad player and I will search him out.

Did I play these hands wrong?

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Another quarter, another year, another set of goals

2005 was one interesting year for me and this hobby. I had some successes, made some money and made a lot of great friends. There were easily more highlights than low spots.

  • Winning my first multi table
  • Cashing for some big dollars ($2000, $1300, & $800)
  • Final table showing in the WPBT Aladdin Classic
  • All the great people I met

There really aren't any true low spots to mention. They consist of many little items like not staying focuses in some tournaments like a Party Million. Ring games during November and December where I just couldn't win consistently. Not winning a seat in a big tournament.

That last one is interesting to me. I would like to win my way into a major tournament, whether it be WSOP or WPT. I came close in June when I won 2k and tried to get into Event #2 at the WSOP. But the lines were huge by the time I was going to sign up and decided not to bother. But in the end, I realized that this goal wasn't achieved because I didn't try. I didn't put my effort into playing tournaments that would get me there. I did some Party satellites but sucked in them. In other spots, I simply didn't want to fork out some big bucks. In the end, you cannot win what you do not set out to accomplish if you aren't in the game.

So now I have a plan. Now I need to execute said plan. I have chosen 2 sites that I wish to win my seat through, Full Tilt and Poker Stars. On Full Tilt I have a platform I like and a company that is great. In Stars, there are simply more opportunities. Either way, each site knows how to treat their people well.

Second part of the plan is to play the damn tournaments. I will need to set aside a portion of money to play just these tournaments. I am not quite sure how much. I will continue to play the guaranteed money tournaments on FTP and will use the 20 tablers on Stars to "train" if you will. Any money won in these will be used to take the next step.

Other goals for the year are to step up to 10/20 on the limit tables and develop a solid NL ring game. The main thing I see holding me back is time. I may not have time to play as much as I might like to achieve these goals. I realize that poker is just a hobby. I have no dreams (delusions?) of going pro. That can work for others, but that just isn't me. I am content with playing when time allows and just trying to play the best I can.

I can't help but feel that 2005 will be a springboard for 2006. Hell, I have already won with the people I have met. Now it is a matter of trying to improve and become better.