Friday, December 28, 2007

Head wasn't in the game

I probably shouldn't have played the RiverChasers last night. I signed up at the last minute, not really enthusiastic about playing. I paid off a hand where I knew I was beat. My gut told me the J on the river gave him two pair, but I tossed in the chips anyways.

I played rather uninspiringly. Is that a word? It is now.

I have done this too many times lately. Played without caring about the outcome. Or played knowing that I wasn't into the game. Yesterday it was the same old thing. I was more interested in ditching the cold I had than playing poker. My thoughts were on the shots I would be drinking instead of playing poker and drinking. See what happens when you head isn't into the game?

I did the two shots shortly after busting out. Very poor read. The Maker's hit the spot though. I felt great this morning. So great I did a shot just because I wanted to.

I may play some this weekend. The concept of the Blogger Skillz game intrigues me a bit. I just may have to show up on Tuesday for that.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Booze and poker cures a cold

I felt rather crappy yesterday. Woke up with a sore throat and was sneezing. Could feel the body begin to ache and tire as the day went on. As I left work, I could feel the cold moving into my sinuses.

I know the cure for a cold. It is quite simple. Do 2 shots before going to bed. Do 1 shot as soon as you wake up. It has to be the first thing you do. Do 2 shots before going to bed on that second day. On day 3, you will feel much better.

It is day 2. The shot this morning was the rough one. Maker's Mark will warm you up and make your stomach do a summersault.

Before I do my 2 shots tonight, I figure I will get in the RiverChasers tourney, assuming there is one. Otherwise I may donk around some low limit PLO or NLHE. I know the whisky will kill the cold. But can it help me kill at the tables?

Monday, December 24, 2007

Truer words have never been spoken

Nothing Comes Between Me And My Beer.

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Friday, December 21, 2007

Free money and me don't mix well

I was cruising through the free roll last night. Well, that and the bottle of Korbel. Brandy that is, not champagne. I am not the mimosa drinker.

It was down to 13 or so and I was just behind lucko. I felt like I was in the zone. I was in the top 10 of the Riverchasers tourney as well. Then I got a bit ahead of myself. Played a hand too hard and was basically done in both tournaments within minutes.

Suck and resuck and I go home. That blew. I overplayed A 10s against 10 10 . Got lucky when I outflopped him but the case 10 comes on the turn and I get crippled. Close to the same thing in the RC game where I overplayed A 6s. Yeah, drunk poker doesn't always pay off, but it irritates me that I played well until the end once again.

I made up for it playing some NL though so it wasn't a total loss.

Congrats to jeciimd and lucko on their wins.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Online return not good

Played some limit last night to no success. Things started good as I took down some nice pots just to see them go floating away. Getting aces cracked twice by K 10 and J 10 when someone catches second pair on the river is frustrating. It got me a bit tilty which didn't help much later on watching people play any connectors and hit.

After Vegas I have been interested in playing more. More live play that is. But I cannot get myself to go down to the Pot to play. Not yet, even though they have been running radio spots about their new expanded poker room for the last year. I guess what I need is a good home game.

Anyone got one in the Milwaukee area?

Being the end of year, things are slow at work. I need some stuff to read. Looks like I will start the day here, Tacky Christmas Yards. Sad to see how Halloween has influenced the Christmas season in trashy yards.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Fishing with the sharks

I have probably said this way too many times about how I don't consider myself to be a good cash game NL player. I am still in the learning stages. I can make some money in Las Vegas playing against other tourists but have to make sure I don't get myself in way over my head. I have blown trip winning on one hand when I couldn't fold aces knowing my opponent had outflopped me.

I managed to avoid those pitfalls this year. I guess is has been the result of listening to what others are saying about the games and then not trying to get too stupid when my butt is in a chair.

I played a lot of NL poker (that I can remember at least) with a lot of different bloggers the first couple of days. Pauly, Falstaff, Change100, VinNay, and Johnny Hughes. I was good as long as the table was never more than 3 of these players sitting. That was the plan. If the level of player got too great at the table, either play tight or walk. Again, avoid doing anything stupid. If the game was manageable, stay. Table selection was the key to making money.

Somehow though I found myself sitting with the sharks on Sunday night after the football games ended. It started out simple enough. Smokkee was in the 10 seat buying in short. I bought in for $200 and ScottMc was down in the 2 seat. Not a problem. Avoid these guys and I am good. Well soon Miami Don would be next to me and The Fat Guy would be sitting down two to my left. Add in Bacon Bikini Mary and later Zeem and I wondered what the hell was happening. I think I saw Miami Don staring at my chips and counting them as his own a couple of times.

I held my own. Played tighter than normal and tried to watch how these guys play. It seemed like a big fight for the money that was in the 3 and 4 seat. I managed to fight back from my early losses to be down just $17 by the time I left. But add in the Megabeat jackpot payout and I was ahead. Not too shabby from a guy still learning. Next time though, I find myself an easier table.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Mistakes and bad reads

It is a full week since I took off for Vegas. After spending some time reading some trip reports, I began to wonder if I was actually there. I say this because there is some time I cannot account for. Like Thursday. I left Caesars after busting out of the tournament. I went back to the IP. I believe I went to the bar (sounds like a natural act). But I am not sure. I remember throwing some craps and then later trying to find where everyone went. Somewhere in there is 3 hours that I do not recall. One thing I do recall is Maudie asking why her butt was vibrating.

Same with Friday. I remember getting something to eat at BK at O'Sheas. I came back and donked it up with Falstaff, thg, and the Bracelet at the 2/4 table before moving to the new 1/2 NL game. Played there for a couple hours and then.... next thing I know I was getting into a cab to go to the MGM. Though possible, I doubt I was in the IP poker room playing for 7 hours.

Somewhere in there, I lost two afternoons. Interesting.

The cash games were good to me last weekend. Not fantastic but good. Had a mix of winning and losing sessions but the loss was only $100 and that was after being stuck $300. It happened in a 3 way pot. I opened for $10 in EP with K K. Cowboy on my left smooth calls. Aggro boy in MP raises to $35. I lick my chops thinking I am getting his last $100. I raise to $100 even after it folds around to me. But then the Cowboy on my left pushes. Aggro boy calls. I said something like "I guess I have to call" and pushed my chips in. Cowboy had A A, Aggro boy had 9 9 and rivered a 9 to take down the main pot.

Later I would realize my mistake. I was focusing on Aggro Boy. I knew I had him beat. What I didn't do was take the time to think about what Cowboy could be holding. With about $200 behind, I thought I had to call because of how much was already in. Had I taken time to think about Cowboy's move, I may have folded. Doubt it as I quickly thought of this as one of those online moves that someone makes with 10 10, but I might have folded if I had thought it through.

On Sunday night, I lost a good pot simply because I totally didn't go with the read and the tell. I had gotten frisky and opened the betting with A 8s in EP. The table was tight and I was pretty sure the old Cowboy in the 10 seat would call and fold the flop like he continually had. Flop was all low cards and I made a bet. I believe he raised me. I called his turn bet thinking I would get him on the river. River paired up my 8. I called his bet thinking he was grasping at air, but saw his 6 5 offsuit had flopped a straight.

I totally misplayed that hand. Not only because I called down with a pair of 8s, but I totally ignored his read. Maudie mentioned in right after the hand. I had seen it before as well. He only bet when he had something and his left hand would shake in anticipation of betting or calling. Had I paid attention and gone with it, I would have saved myself some money. In the end I posted a small lost $17 from that session.

But toss in gains of $143 and $186 and it made up for those two bad plays.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Playing them blind

No, that is not a typo. The title should not be "Playing them blinds". What do you think this is, a strategy post?

I am talking about playing blind. Not looking at your cards, firing those chips out there, and playing the person and their hand. And the amazing results you can have.

See, it is easy when you find the right table. The right table is a 2/4 limit game at the IP that has a couple bloggers at it. One of those has to be an action junkie, the other a good player who wants to have some fun. The rest of the table needs to be those serious tourist players who are going to play any ace, any connectors and any suited cards. Those are the ones you are going to tilt.

An amazing thing is going to happen when you play blind. First, no one is going to believe you when you tell them you haven't looked at your cards. They simply are going to buy it right away. Second, they will get mad and think you are an idiot because you kept betting without looking at your cards. Third, they suddenly think you have absolutely nothing later on even though you have looked at your cards.

There is a legend in the annals of the WPBT December Classic trip. A hand that Iggy played from the rail as he smoked a cigarette. He kept telling the dealer he wanted to bet or raise against a kid. The dealer complied and put his chips in. The kid ended up folding to Iggy's river bet. That is the beauty of playing blind. In these low limit games, you can play the player hard and not worry about your cards.

I ran this gambit against on_thg and Bobby Bracelet with mixed results. I did get thg to fold a hand with my river bet (sorry Mike, had to say it), but the Bracelet got lucky on me though his lower lip was quivering at the end and he didn't have the grapefruits to make the final raise.

See, it all starts with the live straddle. Place them 4 gray chips out and have some fun. Auto raise when 6 people call to see a flop. Bet the flop. Most of these tourists haven't even noticed that you haven't looked at your cards. They think you have a strong hand. If that flop is ragged, at least 4 of those 6 will fold. Bet the turn and river as soon as the card is being turned. Shows strength and sets up the tilt. When they fold the river, turn over the cards one by one and tell them you had to see what you had. Give a look of disbelief when they admit you had them beat. In most cases, ace high will be good.

Or if you are up against the former 863rd greatest player in the world, go for the staredown. I had a lot of fun with Bob in this hand. But on this hand, his poker fu was greater than mine.

I had the live straddle on. I am sitting in the 7 seat with Bob in the 10 on Friday morning. Bob raises me. I raise back blindly and we see a flop. Flop is........I don't know. No clue. I am not looking at the cards on the board. I am in a mortal stare down with Bob. He who blinks first is losing this pot. I bet out. He raises. Call. As the dealer begins to turn the turn card (hey, I can see movement out of my peripheral vision) I bet out. Bob stares back and raises. I call. River card comes and my four grays are out there as I bet out quickly. But this time Bob pauses and takes the time to look at his cards. I think I have him as he just calls. Bob turns over two pair. This could be tough. I look at Bob again and the take a gander on what the board is showing. I look at my cards and turn the first one. An ace, giving me a pair. I either need a an ace or something else to pair the board to take it down. A five doesn't cut it and Bob takes down a good pot.

When he just called, I thought I had him. Close but no cigar.

Next time you are in Vegas and looking for something to do in the morning, go play the 2/4 game. You will have a blast straddling and playing blind. Besides, if you somehow lose that hand, you should be able to make it back on those donkeys that are playing so tight at this game.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Figured it out

I have finally figured out the meaning behind the Las Vegas marketing campaign. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas because you can drink so much that you just don't remember what happened in Vegas.

No, there were no blackouts. No wheelchair rides back to the hotel. No puking. Or falling down.

Close, but no cigar.

Friday was one long session of poker and beer. It started around 10 am. It ended with a trip to Hooters for dinner and then trying to remember how to walk. Around 11 I finished eating some wings, got up to head to the casino and stumbled a bit. It was like I walked into a wall. Suddenly I felt blotto.

So I did what anyone would do. I went back to the hotel to sleep. I went and sat down in front of a slot machine and finished my 24 ounce mug of beer. After playing a slot machine for a while, I decided to try that walking thing again.

Still a problem.

Play some more games and try after 15 minutes. Hey, I think I can make it to the door. Soon I was in a cab and heading back up the strip.

I don't quite know what happened. Sure I drank alot but I didn't feel bad until after I got down to eating the wings. That might have been it. Tossing food into a stomach full of beer may be a bad idea.

Maybe I will have more later. If I can remember. Right now I need to get back to reality. The start of this latest trip was a rocky one. I had spent Wednesday just trying to survive work. Got out of there and went to shovel the snow at my mother's house. Got there to discover I had lost a glove. Probably fell out of my bag somewhere at work. Once I was done, I had to rush to the vet for cat food. Got there just before they closed. Went home and shoveled again. All the while noticing that the street hadn't been cleaned well because of the car that had been parked there. That meant all of that snow would end up in my driveway. Yep, a couple hours later I would be back outside shoveling.

But it gets worse. I was going to do some dishes before I left but couldn't because the trap on the kitchen sink decided it was a good time to develop a leak. Not a big deal but I didn't feel like running out to the store to get a new trap. So that had to wait (got it done today!).

Got up and headed to the airport on Thursday. Everything went well until the plane got in the air. I pulled out my DVD player and noticed that one of my ear buds had lost the little cover on it. I had to watch the movie with just one. Same with listening to the MP3 player.

To top it off, the cab driver decided the best way to get to the IP was via the strip. Asshat!

Thankfully it got better after that. As long as I forget the sessions at the craps table that is.

The poker tables were much kinder. I had two bad hands but managed to fight my way back and get majorly unstuck both times. Maybe I will review those hands later this week.

Also, before I had to get on the plane, the Megabeats jackpot was hit at the Paris. That meant everyone sitting at the IP was going to win as well. Getting handed $140 just before leaving cuz my ass was in a poker seat is my idea of a good beat!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

A trip down under

Thanks to the guys at Full Tilt Poker for giving us a chance to win a trip to the Aussie Millions. I hope everyone enjoys my tale.

I stood at the rail and let out a big sigh. Though I was a bit disappointed, I was also extremely happy. It was just over 3 years ago that I had downloaded Full Tilt Poker and won $100 in their Beta Freeroll tournaments. Now, here I was making the money in the Aussie Millions. Sure it was only $24k for 72nd place, not the $1.75 million first prize. But I made it through 2 full days of poker in my first major poker tournament. Not bad for a trip that was won on Full Tilt.

I knew things would be unique about the trip from the beginning. Having arrived in LAX, I was able to navigate my way to the correct gate in no time. I passed some of the Full Tilt guys along the way. Since we had time, I decided to get a beer to relax myself for the flight. It didn’t seem like to much of a surprise to run into Gavin Smith in the bar. I had met him at Al’s Bash at the Boathouse in 2006 and he was a good guy. As I mentioned meeting him before at the Bash, a big smile came across his face and he began saying what a great time it was. Hey, he was preaching to the choir as I am a veteran of Al’s parties. We kept on talking and before we knew it, the plane was boarding. We finished our beers and parted ways.

As I waited at the gate to get on the plane, I ran into Hoy and Lucko. Hoy won his way to Australia in the 25 seat giveaway while Lucko won the Battle of the Bloggers Tournament of Champions. Hanging with these guys over the next couple of days was great, especially when I was able to get some advice about playing such a big tournament. The advice they gave me helped settle me down and focus. Thanks again guys.

I mentioned that this trip would be unique. It started at the airport. The airline lost my luggage. Somehow they made a mistake and my clothes were headed off to Kuala Lumpur. Great! I may be stuck wearing the same underwear for the next week. Do they have Target stores in Australia?

But that wouldn’t be the end of it. Because I had to argue with the airline, I missed the limo rides to the casino that FTP had provided. The FTP assured me they would send a car back but I told them I could cab it. I just wanted to get settled in and take a shower.

Things seemed better as the cab soon pulled up in front of the Crown Casino. I paid the driver and stepped out of the car. As I did, I made sure not to smash my finger in the door like Dr. Pauly had. By doing so, I forgot my travel bag in the cab and didn’t realize it until after he started driving away. I panicked for a second until I saw he had to stop at a light. I then sprinted down the roadway after him, waving my hands like a lunatic. Just before the light turned green, I was able to slam my hand into the trunk and get his attention. He got out of the car and looked rather agitated for me hitting his car. I quickly told him my bag was in the back seat. He apologized, handed me the bag, and told me to get back in as he would drive me back that way. Nice guy. Hope the rest of these people are as well.

Next thing I knew, I was waking up wondering where the heck I was. Apparently I had checked in, found my room and crashed. It was now 3 in the afternoon and I hadn’t a clue what was going on. I showered and went down to the casino to see what was happening. Along the way, I kept hoping my luck would change. I figured the worst had to be behind me.

Nuh uh. Things would be rough as I played some limit poker just to ease into the scene. Nothing went right. I couldn’t win a hand to save my life. You name the suckout, it happened. How I walked away with just a small loss, I don’t know. Tried some blackjack and had the same result. It seemed a night in the sportsbook was the best solution. If I can’t win at the tables, maybe some Australian basketball would help. Well, many beers and bets later, I was still down. Maybe tomorrow would be better.

The next morning I woke up feeling much better. I had an itinerary for the day’s events waiting for me. A trip to the zoo, eh? What the heck, let’s check it out. As the bus headed to the zoo, I got to know some other qualifiers. Bill from Missouri was a good guy as was Mike from Seattle. We kinda wandered around the zoo together. Some interesting native species were seen. All was good until I was attacked by a rampaging kangaroo. Seriously. We were walking down a path when we heard some commotion from behind. Just as I turned around, I saw a kangaroo coming right at me. Bill and Mike moved just before it was on top of us. I froze. And caught a nice jab to the jaw and went down. Kinda like this except without the boxing ring:

I was stunned. I was sitting on my butt wondering if what happened had just happened. I got knocked out by a kangaroo? Wow. Can this get any worse? I guess it could because I didn’t soil my only pair of drawers. I would later choose to spend the golf outing in the club house at the bar. I had heard there were kangaroos on the course and I wasn't going to take any chances.

Back at the casino, I finally had some good luck winning $460 at the NL tables. Maybe I had some ‘roo luck going for me now. What I thought was bad luck was actually good. Hopefully things would continue

And they did. I won’t bore you with the details but I was up a nice sum for the trip. I gave the credit to my 5 day old underwear and the kangaroo punch. Thus, I had a good feeling going into the main event of the Aussie Millions. I had done well in the Full Tilt tournament the day before, just missing out on a final table. But I did get a bounty for knocking out Mike the Mouth Matusow. With the Hammer nonetheless! Setting him on major tilt is something I won’t ever forget.

I was playing in the first flight. I liked it as I was on a bit of a roll. Only problem was that I was quite nervous and I think it showed. Though I got lucky by having no big name pros at my table, the players there did notice how tight I was playing. For the first 3 hours it seemed like all I did was fold or play from the blinds. The one time I did raise, a couple of the guys joked about how I must have had a monster. Guess the K K showed in my eyes. Thus during the break, I called up the Hoy for some advice on how to calm down. He kept it simple. Relax and play. Act like you have been there before.

I did better after the break. I loosened up to take advantage of my new table image. It worked well. No one wanted to mix up with me at first. But then they began to doubt what I was playing. Thankfully they started calling and re-raising me when I had some big hands. A K suited twice got me some good pots. Catching a set with Q Q busted a short stack’s K K and I was just over double my starting stack with a couple hours left in the day. To make it to the second day was a nice accomplishment I thought.

Thankfully, I didn’t screw up and go broke. On the second to last hand of the day, I made a raise from MP with J J and got called by the button and BB. Uh oh. The button was a sneaky kid from Florida. He loved to play a lot of suited connectors no matter what the raise was. It worked well for him as he had over 40k in front of him. The BB was a rock. The flop came 9 10 3, two clubs. BB checked. I made a continuation bet of 2/3 the pot. Just the kid called. The turn was a rough one. J of clubs. Sure I had a set but now the flush and straight possibilities were there. I bet out ¾ of the pot this time. The kid thought and sneered “all in!”.

My stomach sank. How do I fold top set here? How do I call when I could easily be way behind? Moments ago I was just happy to be making the second day and now I was on the brink of destruction. I must have thought about it for 10 minutes. The table was quite patient with me taking so much time. Finally, I folded those knaves face up. I heard a “wow!” from the rock followed by a “huh?”. The kid showed A 5. A total bluff. Suddenly I was back below the starting stack of 10k and was feeling miserable. I folded the next two orbits, just happy to make it to the next day.

On the second day one flight, I spent some time watching Hoy and Lucko. I tried to study how they acted and reacted to the various bets, hoping to pick up some tips. When I got tired of standing, I would spend some time back in the sportsbook or playing a bit of limit. I wanted to keep my mind on poker but not have it immersed. I think I found a nice balance.

When it was turn to play on Day 2, I was ready. My new friends Bill and Mike had both been knocked out but were there to follow my play. It helped. I started out by being a bit too aggressive. I was getting froggy with A J and A 10, friendly or aggravating hands for bloggers depending on who you talk to. They worked well for me early as I scooped a couple decent pots to double up. I got a bit ahead of myself later with A J when I pushed on an OESD and was called down by bottom two pair.

That would be the only setback on Day 2. I changed gears to a conservative mode and it paid off when I went on a mini rush with Q Q, then K K, and then A K. I guess my opponents kept thinking I was playing any big Ace. I took advantage of a tight table after a change and began my process all over again. At the end of Day 2 I was solid in the middle of the pack, but more importantly, brimming with confidence. I felt like I could actually get lucky and take this tournament down.

But it was not to be. I sludged my way through the field and felt relieve when the call when out that the bubble had burst. I was happy that I was going to take some money home but had to make sure I didn't get stupid.

One strange that occurred during the tournament was that I wasn't at the same table as any of the top pros. That changed on Day 3. I found myself seated two spots to the right of Andy Bloch. As if that is bad enough, he had a monster stack and appeared to be controlling the table. I decided I wasn't going to tangle with him unless I had a monster hand.

I avoided Bloch for hours but didn't really collect any chips. I could steal the blinds here and there but Bloch kept coming over the top and forcing me to fold. I guess it is much easier when you don't play against the best.

Then I would find A K suited on the button. I figured I would pounce on Bloch and make it look like a steal. I raised it up 3xs the blinds to make it look like another steal. I was waiting for him to re-steal but he just called. Huh? No re-raise? What was he up to? The flop seemed great for me. A K 10, two of my suit. Top two pair with the nut flush draw. I decided to take it easy and bet half the pot when Bloch checked to me. He smooth called the bet. Uh...ok. The turn was a harmless 7. Nothing had changed for me. Bloch checked and I checked behind. Maybe he was chasing the flush draw as well. River was a final blank. But now Bloch bet out. My initial reaction was simple. He was going to bully me out of the pot. I wasn't going to allow that and quickly announced "All in!".

I stood by the rail and let out a big sigh. I was out. Hadn't taken the time to fully think about what my opponent might have. I was right about one thing. He was on a flush draw. Only problem was he had flopped a straight. If the turn or river had been a diamond, I would have doubled up and still been going. Instead I was out.

But I still had a smile on my face. It amazes me how this blog has opened up so many opportunities to meet some great people around this world. The number of new friends made from playing this game of poker has been stupendous. Quality people and quality memories that will last forever. Thanks again to the fine people at Full Tilt Poker for bringing a beer city guy to the land down under.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Good time to get out of here

I spent 30 minutes shoveling the 6 inches of snow this morning. By the time I was done, there was another 1/4 inch minimal on what I had cleaned up.

The 20 minute drive to work took 50 minutes.

And my electric razor quit on me this morning. I have an old one somewhere. Hopefully I can find it.

I need to hit the bank, the vet, and shovel some more snow before I can get home to shovel today's accumulation.

They say that there is more snow on the way.

Good time for me to get out of here and go drink and gamble and drink and meet up with new friends while I drink. I cannot really put into words what it is I like about Vegas. It is the one place I really don't have a care in the world. A nice place of escape.

In roughly 24 hours, I will be enjoying a beer at the airport. The weather better cooperate and not screw up my flights. I needs to get my gamble on.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Block off your calendar

Do yourself a favor right now and go block off the last hour or two of your last work day before Vegas. Stop thinking about the Bodonkey tournament on Bodog tonight. Go to Outlook or whatever calendar they use at work and mark your last hours as "busy". The last thing you want is some douchebag seeing you can attend an end of day meeting. You don't need to have a reason to block it off. If someone asks why you are busy tell them research.

Got it done? Good.

You can read all the details on the Bodog touney over at BadBloods. I am too busy to list it all out here again.

I am busy doing research.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Low expectations

At work, not Las Vegas.

Seriously. My employer cannot expect much to be accomplished over the next 3 days. I am here physically, not mentally. Too busy brushing up on when to double down, how many units is the correct bet on the craps table, and when to keep two pair together at the Pai gow table.

I did play some poker this weekend. A little limit as well as some no limit and triple draw to shake the rust off for live play. Ok, so there won't be any live TD but I had fun. Did good in the NL winning half a buyin in just 30 minutes. Played limit for an hour and lost 2 big bets at 3/6. All came down to the last hand where I went chasing with a gutshot straight. Pot was over $120 so I had to.

Made the final financial maneuvers this morning and will hit the bank tomorrow. I can then sit like a zombie at work on Wednesday. Will be wheels down by 10:30 and at the luxury that is the IP by 11. From there, I may go down to Hooters for a bite or may just go across to Caesars to hook up with Blood. Or I may hit the Pai Gow tables at the IP. Any which way, you know I will have a beer in my hand.

Commence the longest 3 days in the!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Vegas with "strangers"

Whenever I am heading off to Vegas, I always get asked the question, "Who are you going with?" Twice a year my response is, "No one. Going out to meet up with some people I know." There may be some pressing and I tell them how it is a group of friends I know from playing poker. I get an confused look and the topic is dropped. I go off and meet the people I know as well as make new friends. I always have a good time.

Mainly because you get to know people like Otis. Most of you have read about his gift to Dr. Chako. It is people like Dr. Chako and Otis that make these trips worth it. I have known Otis a couple years and played some poker with the Doc last December. I don't think he remembers the drunk guy who kept raising his pots at the HORSE game, but that doesn't matter.

Dr. Chako is off serving our country. Otis' gift makes his time away from his family just a bit more bearable. Now, you don't have to go and buy a guitar and send one yourself. But you can do something. Chako had mentioned a charity called Operation Happy Note. Their mission is to get musical instruments to deployed service men and women. Take the time to donate some of that advertisement money you are collecting and make someone happy with the gift of music. Not only will you feel better, it is good karma for Vegas. Besides, I am sure Al will buy you a shot if you do. I know I will.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Candy store

In just over a week I will be watching the elevator doors open up and be greeted with the warms sounds of a casino. The noise of the slot machines, the cry of victory from the craps table, and the thunderous bellow of PAI GOW!!!

I am often asked what games I play in Vegas. It would seem to be an easy question but for me it isn't. I play just about them all. Blackjack, craps, pai gow poker, limit hold em, no limit hold em, HORSE, slot machines, video poker, 3 card poker, even crazy 4 poker. About the only thing I do not play is roulette. Or that giant wheel or any of its derivatives.

I think I have casino ADD. I will play whatever fits my need. Years ago it used to be blackjack. Then it was craps. Then it was pai gow. For the most part it is now poker. But I always find myself looking for something different. Something to entertain me.

That is what gambling is for me. Entertainment. Everyone would like to win. I do too, but I don't necessarily mind losing money if I am having a good time. It doesn't matter what the game is, if the table is fun and energetic- and the waitress makes sure to come by often- I can walk away down but not in the dumps. To me it is paying for entertainment.

I have no clue what might take up the majority of my time next week. I know I will get pai gow and poker in there. There will be some craps of course. But what will the first game I play be?

I have no idea. But is puts a smile on my face to know I will have many choices and some cool people to be around. Just let me run loose in that candy store.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Week off?

Poker this weekend consisted of playing a drunken SnG and a tired tournament that was basically a SnG. Made money in one and got bored in the other. Guess I should have been drinking last night.

I may take a break from the BBT2 this week. The MATH doesn't work well for me because of the start time and it being on a Monday. I usually sleep like crap on Sunday nights and fall asleep around 10. Any good run in the MATH would have me feeling like shit at work the next day. I may play the Mookie on Wednesday. Yeah it is the same start time but I usually have a couple beers in me and can handle being groggy on a Thursday much better than a Tuesday.

I won't be around for the RiverChasers game. Big football game going on. It sucks the NFL and the cable companies couldn't cut a deal. The Cowboys game this week should be a good one. With the Cowboys favored by 6.5, I cannot wait to see that Miami Don says bet the house on the Packers.

Another thing I have been wondering lately. Why is every tournament a double stack? I know people want more bang for their buck, but it may be killing this series. It seems there is a lot of complaining going on about the skill levels of the players. Someone catches a bad beat and begings to harangue the person for what they consider a bad play. Nevermind that the supposed bad play could have been an incorrect read, a faulty button click, or a "aw fuck it, I don't feel like playing anymore" move. Why someone feels the need to keep going off in the chat box, following a person from table to table to bitch and moan is beyond me.

Is it possible that it is because of the double stacks? With extra chips, people can play a bit looser and try to get lucky on the flop. They can lose half their stack and feel like they are starting a regular tournament. Sometimes that is how I play. I will take some early chances knowing I can get those chips back later. With smaller beginning stacks, it could take that gamble factor down a notch.

Just a thought.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Food coma

After dinner yesterday, I was sitting on the couch at my brother's house in food coma, wondering what it is that I had to do that night. I couldn't put my finger quite on it. Maybe I was content to lay there with a full belly.

Then I remembered that I had signed up for the Riverchasers tournament. It would provide me an out. So took a piss and decided it was time to head out.

But then I got bamboozled into driving my mother home. It would be 15 minutes out of the way. I figured I would be about 15 minutes late, so another 15 wouldn't really matter. Plus, it would be bad karma to not help one's own mother right?

As I drove in the night, my stomach started to talk to me. I was in a bit of pain with how much turkey and stuffing I had shoved in there. I contemplated getting home and just calling it a night, sacrificing the $11, but decided to just play for a while. I could take one big risk and if I bust, I bust. I had to work the next day anyways.

When I finally sat down to play, I had only lost about 300 in chips. Not shabby. I waited for some good cards to come and played my game. I did notice my stomach, though feeling better, was still telling me to call it a night. Shut up stomach! I got a little loose making some calls and tossing chips around on weak moves.

I pissed someone off when I went tried to make a bluff. I can't recall exactly what I had. I think it was either A Q or A 10. I called the raise from MP. Flop came J high. The raiser checked as did I. The turn was either a Q or a 10, putting 3 of a suit on the board that matched my A. This time MP bet out. I put him on a mid pair and decided I could make a move right here and push him off the pot. I popped it back all in, representing that I had made my flush. He instacalled with J J. Bad read by me. But a K hit the river and I caught my gut shot straight. I had even noticed the straight was possible. That set flopped set o' Jacks on tilt. Later he would show up at a table and berate me for moving with A high.

The double up got me over 4k. Basically it meant my stomach would have to deal with me playing more poker. I continued to play patiently, waiting for the right time to gain more chips. Hoy helped out by giving me a good chunk on one hand. That got me closer to 10k and I would soon move above that mark.

Got lucky when I got moved to a table with a push monkey. Didn't matter much what the size of the pot was, he was going to put it all in. 3000 in the middle, bet the flop for 10,000. Thus when I got dealt K K, I started praying for him to get stupid. My prayers were answered when he made a raise of 6xs the blinds. I moved all in and was instacalled by his pockets 10s. A couple hands later, I would get another chunk when someone tried to run their K K through my A A.

Before I knew it, I was atop the mountain in first with 20 some left. It took a while but soon enough we were at the final table. I lost my top spot and was sitting around 8th when we got there. I stayed patient looking for spot to pounce. I thought I had my spot only to see it slip away. I called a raise from the player on my left with A 10 in the SB. Flop came 10 high and I decided to make a move with it. I pushed and was called by A Q. Uh...ok. Unfortunately for me, rag rag gave us both a wheel and the pot was split. It would have knocked him out.

That came back to bite me later. This hand bothered me. With J J in the SB, I again called his button raise. Flop came K K Q. It checked around. Turn was an 8. This time I bet out 10k and was raised to 30k. If I called, it meant I would have 11k left. I didn't like calling there and had to decide to push or fold. My notes on the player showed he was pretty tight. He only made raises when he had pocket pairs or face cards. I took some time to decide if he was playing A K or A Q. In the end I folded my jacks. I don't think he would have raised me there with a small pocket pair. My gut was screaming he had a K. Maybe I should have said WTF and pushed.

I would play another 40 minutes beyond that hand. I was down below 20k and needed to find some place to push. I made a poor play by re-raising with A 2 and was out by flopped set of 9s. Yeah, poor spot to try and make something happen.

I finished 4, one spot better than the Mookie the night before. Not bad for not wanting to play.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Not bad, could have been better

5th place.

Number 5 in the sea of 90. With the way I have played lately, I will take it and be happy. Not necessarily content, but happy. If I was content it would man I didn't care to win the damn Mookie.

Yeah, from now on, it is the damn Mookie to me. Nothing personal to Mook, but his tournament usually gives me fits. To finish 5 is a bit of success.

Congrats to the Budohorseman for his win. Pretty remarkable since he was the short stack when we were down to 6.

I played some good poker last night. Was not too wild. Made some good reads. Picked up some nice sized pots by putting players on draws or underpairs. I did not make any read dumb mistakes that I could not make up for later on.

But I ran into the same problem I usually do at a final table. I try to make a play out of position and get nailed for it. It is usually in a spot that I won't kill me, but it does leave a flesh wound. Did it again last night and LJ punished me for it.

At some spot I will correct that flaw. But in the meantime, I will be happy to hit a final table and push for a win.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

To Mook or not to Mook

Depends how drunk I get tonight. Like Al, I am not a fan of amateur nights at the local watering hole, but I do believe I need to make sure my bartenders are taken care of. Bar etiquette goes downhill today as people make their 1 of 2 treks out all year. They usually end up being rude to the bartenders, expecting to get great service as soon as they move up to the bar. They will stand in front of people shooting darts (hey, this happened to me). And they usually do not tip.

The way I see it, someone needs to save them. Plus there is a chance I can get looped up enough to unleash my inner aggressive donkey on the tables.

And please click on the banner above. Check out!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

You hear that?

I think you do. You hear that distant noise. No it isn't the TV in the background. It isn't the sound of traffic outside. It isn't the white noise being pumped into the office.

It is the sound of anticipation. The sound of poker players getting antsy for a trip to Vegas.
It is the stories that you thought were myths being retold and enjoyed for the umpteenth time. It is about wheelchairs and having imaginary kids with other bloggers.
It is about being rolled by a hooker.
It is about drinking until 11 in the morning and letting someone play your money at a blackjack table as you are about to pass out.
It is about the gravitational pull the Fatburger has as you walk by it.
It is about all the silly prop bets that will be made.
It is about the possibility that new legendary tournaments will be added.
It is about being able to stand at the MGM sports book bar without falling down.
It is winning rubber ducks at Hooters and having some guy in a kilt steal it.
It is about picking a horse with the name of Too Drunk to Call and having it win!!!
It is watching football with people from all over the country, cheering on all kinds of teams.
It is finding a poker tournament at 2 in the morning and deciding that you can make it downtown in 20 minutes to play it.
It is drinking for hours on end with someone you met earlier in the day.

It is about having a great time with friends.

It is the sound that will continue to build over the next couple of weeks. The sound that will make you ignore you work, make you review your blackjack tables, make you memorize the odds at the craps tables and which bets are the best. The sound of a good time personified.

How many days to go Drizz?

Friday, November 16, 2007

My own worst enemy

I made a decent run last night in the RiverChasers tournament. I was feeling pretty confident I was going to make the final table and have a chance to take it down. Maybe I was a little too confident.

I was my own worst enemy last night, making two bad reads that devastated my stack. It started out well. I missed the first half hour as I was out drinking. Came back and double my stack just before the first break. Soon into the second hour I would double up again as a huge stack tried to bully me out of a pot with a massive all in raise. Having the Hiltons, I called his bet with a 7 being the highest card on the flop. He showed his 2 2 and began to stew. I say this as he busted and berated a player for calling his all in bet with A 8.

Yeah, I was flying high in the top 5. But then I got a little too cocky. I was dealt K Qs, a hand I like. It was raised by the cutoff. I was thinking steal and that I could push him off with a re-raise. I re-pop it to force him all in. He goes for it and shows K K. Oops!

Soon I would do the same thing again. In the SB, I have A Qs and raise it. BB goes all in for like 2k more. I immediately am thinking he is trying to steal and quickly call. He shows A A. Oops part deaux!

I don't recall how I went out. I believe I ran A Qs into A A again. All that got me 15th place and a thanks-for-playing. No cash, no nuthin'.

Of course the kicker is, I didn't need to be that aggressive. I should have seen a flop with the K Q and went from there. I was probably screwed on the A Q hand no matter what. Oh well, there is next week. I need to get me a token or make some cash for the Big Game.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Vegas and Booze

Somehow I felt compelled to post something about an oncoming adventure in Las Vegas after not one, but two people felt the need to point out that it is 23 days (depening on when you read this) and counting. Sure Pauly will post his survival tips pretty soon, but that may not totally prepare you.

So I offer up some sage advice from purveyors of the potent potable, the loudmouths of liquor, the bishops of booze, the demaigogues of all that is drunken debauchery, Modern Drunkard Magazine:

The Drunkard’s Guide to Sin City

A couple I know recently approached me on the eve of their first trip
to Las Vegas, looking for advice. They’d heard I was born and raised there and
figured I might know some inside angles.
And indeed I do. I spent a drunken half hour alternatively tantalizing and terrorizing them about their choice of vacation spots. A little wisdom did manage to did slip through, however, which I present here in case you are considering a foray into Sin City.
You want to arrive with the idea you’re going to win a great deal of money. It doesn’t matter how little money you arrive with, or how many painful lessons you have absorbed in the past, this time it will be different. Never set a limit as to
how much you’re willing to lose. That is plainly a defeatist attitude and will
jinx you from the start. You should, however, set a limit as to how much you are
willing to win. For most this means every chip in the house, and perhaps the
deed to the casino.
If you gamble, you get free drinks. It’s a helluva a
deal, and if you possess even an average amount of luck the drinks will only end
up costing you about 40 bucks apiece. The climate is very hot and dry, so
remember to stay hydrated by drinking a lot of fluids. Triple Wild Turkeys do
not count, unless you ask for a lot of ice. Sadly, the level of customer care
has steadily declined since the casinos were taken over by soulless
corporations. It is customary to meet every instance of McDonald’s-style service
by muttering, “At least the Mob knew how to treat their goddamn
The fact that you can drink 24 hours a day can have an unsettling
effect on some visitors. Realize you will have to be your own bouncer and should
cut yourself off after the bartender’s face has changed three times.
Some people seem to think that tipping the dealer is akin to French-kissing a mugger, but this is not true. It is akin to merely kissing the mugger’s hand.
It’s a psychological fact that money won on games of chance doesn’t seem like “real” money, which can encourage you to squander your winnings. So whenever you get a little ahead, turn those chips into cash and force yourself to
invest in tangible commodities, such as lap dances and $20 room-service shrimp
If you have a streak of luck, don’t smugly inform your friends
that you’re seriously considering quitting your job and moving to Vegas to give
the gambling profession a go. It will make them want to strangle you in your
sleep or, worse, want to borrow some money.
When you return from your trip it
is traditional to play down your losses and exaggerate you winnings. For
example, if you broke even or actually came out ahead, if only by $20, you
should inform your friends you “raped the bastards” and all the pit bosses
thought you were some kind of “internationally-renowned card shark.” If you lost
all the money you arrived with, you should say you “basically broke even.” If
you lost the money you came with and every cent you could squeeze from your
credit and debit cards, you should say you “lost a little, but more than made up
for it in free drinks.”

Just a friendly reminder that there is life away from the poker tables.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Was I too aggressive or too weak?

If I look at my poker game, I am much better at tournaments than cash. Better at limit than no limit. And a small stakes guy, 2/5 at the most.

That is why I am trying to learn the nuances of NL cash again. I had some success in June playing at the MGM and hear that they games are still good for a player like me. It is the little things I have picked up reading other blogs that I am trying to incorporate into my game.

This hand went down on FTP the other day. I don't think I played it that well, nor did I play it poorly. Any advice on what I could have done better is appreciated.

Playing .25/.50 (yeah, little stacks online). Dealt 8 9 clubs in MP. It is folded around to me and I just call. Person on my left raises to 1.75. Both blinds fold. Flop is nice looking but dangerous, Q J 10, with the J and 10 being clubs. I flopped a straight with a draw to straight flush. My opponent bets out 3.50. I like my straight but realize I could be in trouble. He could have easily raised with A K which means my dummy end of the straight is just that. Making me the dummy. But the flush draw could be good unless he raised with A K clubs. I decide to raise just the minimum to 7. He comes back with a raise to 15. I just called, deciding to take some time to put him on a hand. A K is worrying me but I don't think he has it. That is based on a previous hand where he cracked A A from the SB with 8 6. UTG played it cute and limped. He flopped two pair and stacked the guy. He kept going with min raises, showing that he may not be monster strong.

When a rag hit on the turn, I pushed my remaining $20 in. I figured it would all end up anyways and this way it looked like maybe I was trying to push him off the pot with a confident big bet. He called showing K K. Rag on the river gave me the pot.

Sure I won but somehow I think I could have played it better. Should I have been more aggressive on that flop? Or maybe more cautious? Do I get him to commit on the turn? Or is pushing there, knowing I could be behind a bad move? Any advice from you cash gamers is appreciated.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Don't know if I could have laid it down

I was floating along in the RiverChasers last night. Had one player that would never fold to my preflop bets. The flop would always have an A in it and suddenly they were betting out, causing me to fold my J J. No, I won't give them enough credit to be able to bluff me out there. I have played with them before and they play the I-have-an-ace-so-I-will-see-a-flop-no-matter-what-the-raise-is mentality.

But I didn't let that bother me. Much. I focused on playing my game. It worked well until the second period got going. With A Qs, I raised UTG. Only BuddyDank called from the button.

Flop was 10 10 10. Interesting.

We both check.

Turn is a Q. Not quite sure if this is good or bad. I cannot put Buddy on a 10 here. How can you? I think I bet about 3/4 of the pot to see if I am good with my boat.

Dank now pushes all in. He has me covered. Crap!

I go in the tank. Again, I cannot put him on a 10 here. Slight chance he calls in that spot with J 10s but doubtful. How could he just call with A A or K K? Doesn't seem to make sense, though I have seen a lot of people just calling raises with K K lately.

Is he trying to push me off the pot with his own pocket pair? That is the conclusion I came to. There are only two hands that beat me here, aces or kings (sure he could hold a ten but I have already ruled that possibility out). I can't see him slow playing either and I make the call.

He shows the K K and I am down to 3 possible outs that do not hit. I go home in 70th.

Well played Buddy.

If I somehow lay that hand down, I have about 2200 left and am alive and still in a position to move back up. Still, I don't think I made the wrong play. It didn't win but on the range I put him on, it makes sense. I believe I would end up calling again in that situation.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The dreaded Mookie

The dreaded Mookie has started. First table is interesting with Ftrain on my right, Maudie next to him, Kat on my left, and Hoy to the left of her.

Start out slow, raising only one hand, A Q in MP. I then fold for another round. Good thing Dennis Miller is on HBO otherwise I might fall asleep. Fold after fold is little fun, but necessary. If I raise with any of these field goal cards I will get my ass handed to me on any flop that misses me.

I then try to make a play on Ftrain. I call his raise with 6 6. Flop is J 2 3. I decided that no matter what, I am calling his flop bet and raising him on the turn. Call 400 to see a 3 hit the turn. He checks and I bet. But the little bastard goes all in. Damnit. Bad time to make a play.

Down to 1275. Let's see if I can get it all back in one fell swoop.

I call Ftrain's bet from the button with A Q. I think about re-raising his steal attempt but don't have the grapefruits to do it. There are no bets as the board comes 10 high and I take the pot. Power poker people!

8 8 raise and scare the EP limper away. I am on a roll!

Then with A Qs in the BB, I raise it up just more than the pot as 3 others try to limp in. Only one calls. Hmm... Flop is 10 10 2, two spades. What the hell...push! He thinks and thinks and calls with 4 4. Good call. But I get lucky and catch a Q on the turn. No 4th spade on the river to screw me and I am back above the starting point of 3k.

So now that I have been given a new lease in this game, how will I screw it up?

Well, I can call a raise with A 10 and fold on the flop. I thought it was fishy and sure enough, he shows the Hammer. Well played!

I wonder if Hoy will let me limp on in. Yes. Flop gives me an OESD but Hoy won't give me any more chips. Damn.

A couple hands later, I try raising with 5 5 in EP but get re-raised. No, still have no grapefruits to make the call and fold. I haven't seen this person raise a single pot all game so I figure he has to have me beat.

I try again with two black 9s and it gets me the blinds. Hey, it is a start. Good thing too, lots of folding as we head into the break.

Just as the break starts, I get moved to a new table. Don't recognize as many people here. 23skiddoo and Dionysus are here as is willwonka. Better yet, I don't have the big stack arseface Ftrain to my right anymore (dawn summers called him that).

Second verse, same as the first.

The action after the break is just like the beginning of the game. Fold, fold, fold. Then I see J J come to me. I am UTG+1 and raise it up. But willwonka pushes in the BB. WTF??? Doesn't seem right. My gut tells me he does not have any of the 3 overpairs. I decide to go for broke and make the call. He shows 10 10. No improvement for him and I get over 4k.

A Ks in the BB and I get a raise. Time to pop it back! Darn, he folded.

Two hands later, I am tangling with 23skidoo again. I make it look like a total steal from the button with A Jo. I am kinda happy when he raises me back because my immediate thought is he has A rag and just try to steal it back. So I push. He thinks and calls, showing A 7. My A J holds up and I am doing great.

Next hand, I get A A for the first time. I get a raise ahead of me and repop it. He then goes all in. Does it get any better? Suddenly I am up over 11k and in second place.

I then get a phone call and begin to play with maybe half of my attention on the game. With a couple of good hands, I suddenly vault into first with over 30k in chips. Which is a good thing as I don't have many good cards coming my way or am suddenly not hitting any flops. As we head into the second break, I am on top with just over 32k and 27 runners left.

But I am card dead for the first half of the 3rd session. This really sucks. If I get something I can make a play with, it gets raised ahead of me. And if I get J 3 one more time, I am going to break my monitor. It seems like every hand I get has a J in it.

Finally I get a break and the jacks stop coming. I see a flop as wonka tries to steal. It is only A 3 but I am sick of folding. Flop pairs my A. Nice. I just call his bet and decide to check-raise the turn. Works as I get a pot and get over 50k. Now I get into stealing myself. Take a couple here and there. We are in the money but the big money is at the final table. Problem is, I don't feel like playing much longer. Work will be here way too soon.

Within a couple hands, I would go from leader to out in 10th. Sadly, I really didn't care anymore. I was too tired to try to finish this off. I made a loose call with 2 2 on a board of 10 10 3, thinking my two pair was good. But the BB was slow playing K K and that took a chunk out. Next hand I bounce back against wonka with Q Q to knock him out. But then I way overplay A Qs from the BB and run into A Ko. Just like that, I get bounced.

I wish I hadn't been tired and could focus. Playing for 3 hours to basically win a pitcher of beer just isn't worth it.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007


Ever get involved in a hand that just leaves you befuddled?

Sure you have. Once the pot gets shipped to some clown, you sit back and wonder what just happened.

Played a tourney on Bodog tonight, trying to get my tournament credits to multiply so I can play the Blogger game. I am doing ok with two thirds of the field gone when I get involved in this hand. UTG goes all in for just over twice the 300 BB. UTG +1 calls. UTG+2 calls. Fold. Fold. I am up with J J. Pot has 7 BB in it and I push hoping to isolate the UTG player. SB folds. BB calls. Both UTG 1&2 call.


Flop is 4 4 9. Looks good to me. It checks to UTG+2 who bets 6000 (he is the tournament leader with over 10k at the start of the hand). BB folds. UTG+1 calls.

What do these kings of poker have?
UTG- 3 3
UTG+1- A 10
UTG+2- A J

I am looking great until an A spikes on the river. So sad. No Blogger tourney for me for a while.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Shaking the rust off

What can you do when you play a good game and lose because someone played better? Learn from the experience, grab some cash, and sit down at the next table.

That is how my RiverChasers tourney went last night. One hand knocked me down. I didn't give up and fought my way back, but just couldn't do it.

Kat was the one who crippled me last night. Her flopped set of 9s did the damage. She got my read of kilter with her play. She raised from MP and I just called with A K off. I thought about re-raising but with it being unsuited, figured seeing a flop was the better move. Got my K on the flop and decided to check behind. The A on the turn made me happy. I am sure it made Kat happy too. All the chips went in and I didn't get lucky on the river.

I was down at that point but not out. Without any decent cards to make a move with, I chipped down to 435 before building my way back up to 3150. A double through would get me back in the game. This is where I didn't play that well. Called a raise with a middle pair and saw a flop that gave me an OESD. Gave up another 400 to see the turn that completely missed. Had to fold to the turn bet that would have put me all in. Roughly 800 gone like that. Stupid.

I have no problem with my bust hand. At least from my point of view. I thought the person winning the hand made a very terrible and moronic play. NewinNov limped UTG. I was up next and pushed my last 1600 in with A Ko. I was sceptical of New's limp right away but with antes in play, I had no choice but to make a move with my small stack. I get a call from a player in LP. Then New goes over the top and pushes his 4500 (?) in. Right away I knew I was in trouble. I figured he had to have A A or K K and one of my outs was gone. The other player thought for a while and then called with 10 10.

WTF?!?!? You called a raise and re-raise with 10s???

New had Q Q, which surprised me a bit. I knew he was strong but didn't think he would make a move with just queens. I have played with him many a time and would have folded those 10s each and every time. Of course, the donkey hit a 10 on the flop and it would be over. I hate it when the worst play of the hand wins the pot.

I ended up finishing the beyond middle of the pack. Sad to say it was my best finish so far, but with how little poker I have been playing, it is understandable. Right now I am shaking the rust off and getting back in the game.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Mookie cubed is 3xs as bad

Once again, the Mookie was a kick in my ass. Once again, I was playing well. Nothing fantastic, but I wasn't in bad shape. I was alive and looking to make a move. But I would screw the pooch with a bad read.

I have fallen into a bad habit. Call it table cop. I watch someone continually raise or push and figure I need to step up and stop them from killing my action. Problem is, I forget that they just may have a good hand and that my hand, while good, is not a dominant one.

Thus, my push with 8 8 (when I didn't need to commit) was pretty bad. I can't blame my opponent for insta-calling with J J. I played an hour and a half just to blow it away with one stupid bet. No wonder I haven't done well lately.

Next up, I got loose and crazy in the Dookie. Again, I was doing pretty good. Had chipped up nicely and was at the top. But in two hands I pushed marginal edges and was soon done in 10th place.

To top it off, I was a quick out in the Spooky when my A Q was trounced by 6 6.

All was not lost though. I enjoyed a nice bourbon barrel ale, downing a 6 pack for a nice buzz and made $55 on the cash NL tables. At least two things went well yesterday.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Soon I will be back in the game...

Until I get my account straightened out and financed, I will have to wait on the sideline. But you don't have to. Get in the Bodonkey game today!!!

Play Bodog’s Online Poker Blogger Tournament This Tuesday Night!

Bodog invites Poker Bloggers to play in it’s Poker Blogger Tournament with a total of $600 in bonus money.

If you are 1 of the 5 money bubblers, you’ll have your $11 buy-in refunded and if you finish in the top 5 you will win an entry for Bodog’s Sunday $100K Guaranteed tournament.

This tournament runs weekly on Tuesday evenings and requires a password for entry that Bloggers can promote within their community.

Tournament Details

* Dates: October 30th through to November 6, 2007
* Tournament Name: “Online Poker Blogger Tournament” at Bodog
* Entry Password: bodogblogger
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Friday, October 26, 2007

Smart to retarded in 5 seconds

I think that explain how I did in the RiverChasers tourney last night. Went from smart to retarded in 5 seconds. Was playing a patient, smart game and then threw it all away.

I was determined not to play all loosey goosey again. I showed up about a half hour in and played some hands. Made some good reads to chip back up and missing some flops and draws. Was floating along, waiting for a spot to make a move. The cards weren't coming my way and when they did, I made good use of them.

But then I hit a bit of a dry spot, and then one bad read which led to a bad move. A below average stack decided to start pushing on every hand, from EP. First time I folded A Q not wanting to go on a potential coin toss. The second time I had crap. The third time, I had 5 5. Presto never loses. I believe he was pushing on any two cards, with maybe an ace. It felt right to not just call but come over the top and make him fold that crap hand.

He insta-called. Yep, with A A.

See ya! This retard must drink the rest of his beer and shut down the pc.

The good part is I was content with my play last night up to that hand. There is plenty of time left to get back into shape. And if it continues to rain all weekend, I may find myself playing more than I expect.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

The Mookie and my self junk kicking

Yeah, I pretty kicked myself in the junk in the Mookie. Played way too loose and aggressive early. That made for a short night.

I don't understand why I get into that groove in the Mookie. It isn't my game. I can get aggressive later in the mid or late rounds, but going crazy in the beginning has never worked for me. You would think I would have learned by now.

So I thought about it and figured these are the factors that led to my early exit:
  • I just suck in the Mookie tournament. Again, see above.

  • Maybe I was traumatized that the new Helloween CD wasn't going to be delivered as expected on Tuesday. I needs my pumpkin power!

  • Was it the beer curse? Once again, I went out as soon as I opened a new beer. The Sprecher was fantastic, but it didn't help my poker game.

I have a shot at redemption tonight in the RiverChasers tourney. Maybe I should go straight to the bar from work and get in shape for the game.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

2nd banana

I finished second in the Monkey tournament last night. I think I may have found my niche in the poker world. Small tournaments with bloggers. If the number of entries gets over 25, I am screwed.

The money won basically covered what I dropped at the NL cash table. It was one of those annoying nights where pots never built up when you had monsters and your good hands got sucked out on the river. The guy who pushed because he was freerolling with his straight and hit his flush on the river to take the whole pot instead of half is just a kick in the gut. But can you fold that straight? I couldn't.

I also made one bad play in the Monkey that bothered me later. It bothered me because it kinda screwed over another player. With 4 left, I am dealt 8 3 in the small blind. Big blind has 800 behind after posting the 400 BB. I have over 5k. I bet enough to force the small stack in. And lose mightily. I wasn't going to let a stack on life support take a walk. But is this an instance in which I should have? Immediately I thought so. With that pot, he suddenly was a factor again and would soon take out the person in 3rd. If I had let it walk, he would have still been in a bad spot.

So do you go for the knockout, or realize you have shit cards and let someone else do it?

Congrats to Spock on the win!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Strike a KORD

I left work and went straight to the bar. I figured a change of pace was necessary as I had to work late on a Friday. So the plan was to get a buzz and get home in time for Kat's donkament. Even though the beer and food were free, I got my butt off the bar stool and went home. If I stayed, I would have been there much later and would have needed a ride.

The donkament was interesting to say the least. Lots of crazy action before the rebuy period ended. I really screwed the pooch in this one. I got off to a great start, luckboxing out of the gate and was soon up over 10k. But I donkied it all away and stumbled into the second hour. There I survived just long enough for Poker Enthusiast's Razz tourney, the KORD Classic, to begin.

And what do you know...

Maybe that is the secret to winning at Razz. Be drunk. On Sprecher. Lord knows I made some really bad plays in the Razz tourney. Bluffing when it looked like the best I had was a J. Yep, I did that. But I was able to get the few remaining sober brain cells to rally and pull off a win. I have no clue how I overcame JL as he had a decent chip lead on me. Must have been more luckboxing. I do recall trading the lead a couple of times. Guess sometimes the drunk guy does indeed win a "world class" event.

Can't wait for the BB2 Razz event!!!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Part duh

With the Blogger Battle Part Deux coming up, I figured I should shake some rust off and play some poker. At some point I will learn only to play when focused. I had two SnGs going and lost interest about 30 minutes into each. I had been doing well but then proceeded to donk on out. Guess that means I am ripe for the picking in the oncoming series.

We'll see what happens over the next couple of weeks. My goal is to get focused enough to win my way into the Big Game. With the stuff I have to do around the house, that may be an issue. But where there's a will, there's a way.
Looking for some poker news? Dan at Pokerati is covering teh Abolute scandal going on. Haven't seen anyone else mentioning this story yet. Looks kinda ugly from my viewpoint.
Update: Drizz mentioned their was site with all the info. Found it. Could we have guessed Absolute Poker Cheats?

Friday, October 12, 2007

The IP comes over the top

Well, I thought I would only be able to get 2 free nights at the Rio and that it would be my stay. But the Imperial Palace came over the top with a totally free weekend. And some free booze and food. Not too shabby!

So no more worry about storing bags or money being spent on taxis. Only worry is for time to fly so it is December already! And to confirm Metal Skool is playing the Hard Rock.

Ask and ye shall receive

No sooner than I complain about not finding a good rate on a good room do the good people at the Rio offer me free lodging. Even if I have to pay for Saturday night (around $120), I will be better off paying for cabs to get to the strip. Only issue will be storing my bags on Sunday during the football games. Leaving them at the Rio would be a bit of pain at the end of the night when I have to get to the airport.

I just hope they have rooms available when I call later today.

How about some football. My beloved Dallas Cowboys play host to the New England Patriots in a big game of unbeatens. You know it is a big game when it gets a nickname right away. The Duel in Dallas. Cute.

Sports gambler/poker player Don quickly said to take the Pats and lay the points. And back up the truck! Ok, he didn't say that but he quickly jumped on taking the Patriots. I don't that is such a great idea. The Patriots are the better team. Yes, you read that right. I said the Patriots are the better team. But they may not be on Sunday.

Here is why the Cowboys can win:

  • The Patriots defense is not impenetrable. The Cleveland Browns put up 353 yards of offense on them. If it wasn't for turnovers, the Browns would have put more points on the board. They had it 1st and goal on their opening drive before the interception came. Pats fans were sweating that one.
  • Phillips defense stacks up well against the Pat's offense. From the Dallas Morning News:

But Brady has not performed particularly well against the Phillips 3-4. A
look at Brady's games against the Chargers the last two seasons:

San Diego 41, Patriots 17 (Oct. 2, 2005) -- Brady completed 19
or 32 passes for 224 yards with one TD and one INT in a blowout that snapped the Patriots' 21-game home winning streak. New England had only two first downs in
the second half.

Patriots 24, Chargers 21 (Jan. 7, 2007) -- Brady struggled
most of the playoff game, completing 27 of 51 passes and getting picked off
three times. But he made enough plays to win, passing for 280 yards and three
TDs. Marlon McCree's interception probably would have sealed the win for San
Diego, but the Patriots got new life by forcing a fumble on the return. Brady
took advantage by throwing a TD pass and setting up the game-winning field goal
with a deep ball to Reche Caldwell on the next possession.

  • The crowd. Don't under estimate the fans in Dallas when there is a big game. Sure they may not get all riled up when the Cardinals or Rams come to town. But when the game is big, they will be loud. They got into the Colts game last year and it showed. The Cowboys fans will be ready for Sunday and you will hear them.
  • No way in hell does Romo have another game like he did on Monday night. Though he played poorly, his teammates- especially the defense- took up the slack and kept them in the game. The defense has steadily gotten better this year and will be up for the challenge.

The Patriots win by simply playing their game. If Moss catches more than one deep ball, it is over. Moss has consistently hurt the Cowboys. This year I am hoping it is different.

The Cowboys can win this weekend and it should be a good game. Whether I will be playing the PokerStars blogger game as I watch has yet to be determined.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Early out again

I don't know why I play the Mookie. I never do any good in it. Usually gone within the first half hour.

Last night was no different. I played loose and passive to begin with, chasing flushes and straights that didn't hit. I did have one "smart" play where I hit my straight on the turn but knew I was screwed when the river paired the board. Sure enough, the full house took the pot.

I went out when my A Ko was outdrawn by a limper/call a pot size raise person who proceeded to hit two pair on the flop with A 10. Again, I knew I was behind but called the all in bet with just 640 behind because I didn't care at that point. I figured if it was a night that would see me continually outdrawn than why play? I made my donation to the pool and did a quick walk of shame away from the pc.

It looks like the rodeo is taking over Las Vegas. Been trying to find a reasonable rate on rooms for the WPBT event and am running into the wall. The good ole' IP wants to charge $159 for Friday and Saturday. I thought they were kidding at first, but she was serious. I found a better rate online but still, that much for the IP?

Been having no luck with any of the Harrahs properties either. They have offers for the month of December but not that weekend. The cheap rooms are again at the north end of the strip at the Sahara and Stratosphere. The amount paid on taxis and monorails may not be worth it to stay up there.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

No Bodog, but Vegas

Well, I did get the Bodog software to work last night. But I couldn't make a deposit. It wouldn't accept either of the debit cards I had and I wasn't about to use a regular credit card. No Bodonkey for me last night.

I do have 8 tournament dollars there and will have to parlay that into something bigger. Too bad I can't use those in a SnG. That sucks.

Looks like I will be booking a flight to Vegas later this morning for December. Falstaff has the details over at PokerStage. I will be in just before noon on Thursday the 6th and taking the redeye home after the football games on Sunday.

The best news is Metal Skool should be performing that Thursday night at the Hard Rock. Badblood, have you booked your flight yet? Any and all poker metalheads have to hit up this show. Believe me, you will not be disappointed!

I am also interested in checking out the Hoffbrau house for some good beer drinking. Anyone interested in doing so either Friday or Saturday (after the tournament), please let me know.

I probably should play some poker in the meantime. Or at the very least, some Pai Gow.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007


I see Smokkee is sponsoring a Tuesday night Bodonkey with a nice overlay. If I can get Bodog to work, I plan on playing. Only problem is I have no funds on Bodog. Anyone out there that can swap some Full Tilt for Bodog? It would be greatly appreciated. Drop me an email at so we can work out the details.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Poker Tournament

I have registered to play in the PokerStars World Blogger Championship of Online Poker!

This Online Poker Tournament is a No Limit Texas Holdem event exclusive to Bloggers.

Registration code: 8786670

Hey, an actual poker post!

I played some last night. Riverchasers. Ended up 20 out of 44. Not bad but not good. I didn't care for the way I went out. After starting out tight, then loose, then tight again, I managed to get myself back into the game with a stack that wouldn't force me to make unnecessary moves, but allow me to find the best spots.

At least that is what I was thinking.

I raised with K Qo in the cutoff or button. I get re-raised by the player on my left. Kat calls. Now, I should realize that I am behind at least one and probably both. Why I am calling the re-raise? Because I ain't that bright.

Flop comes K high. Hey, I got lucky. I am hoping that someone is playing Q Q. Kat is first to act and moves all in. My gut reaction is she does not have A K. I think she has Q Q or J J and is trying to push us off. With about 5300 behind and the other player having me covered, can I really just call her bet of 3200(around that)?

I believe I need to raise here to force the other guy out and simply pray he does not have A K, K K, or A A. So I did and was insta-called by A A.

In hindsight, the best move was to fold preflop. It is not because of the end result. It is I should have realized I was behind both of them. But I did have fun so that counts for something.

So Pokerstars is having the blogger tourney again. On the 14th. During one of the biggest early matchups of the NFL season, the Patriots and Cowboys. That is poor planning by those Europeans. Not sure if I will be playing or not.

Been looking into room for Vegas in December. Falstaff has all the details. Someone had mentioned Harrahs had some good rates and to check it out. I did and found the opposite. If you have a good number of points with them, you can get free rooms but unfortunately, not that weekend. Couldn't find a cheap room in the middle of the strip beside the IP. I was saddened to see Hooters was booked up. Even the Excalibur was on the expensive side. Hopefully I will get an offer in the mail that will comp me a bed for at least part of the weekend. I rather spend my money on booze and gambling than a place to crash.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

You lookin' for debauchery?

You are in the wrong place. But don't worry, you can read Key West stories over here. And I haven't begun to cover the Adopt a Key West Stripper program yet.

Friday, September 28, 2007

I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop
I will not leave myself logged into on Al's laptop

Live Blogging the Key West cash game

Everyone is huddled around the kitchen table at the southern resort we know as AlCantHang Key West. As Gracie feeds me pretzels, the game goes on.

Drizz goes for the quick bully move on Pauly's straddle, raising it to 7xs the blinds (25/50). Pauly doesn't like it and folds on the flop.

Derek makes the raise and 4 people see the flop. Pauly wins with his pair of jacks.

Ftrain has the straddle on. I pop it to 3. Everyone is calling. WTF? 4 7 8, two hearts. Pablo and Ftrain check. I do as well. But Change 100 bets 11. Calls by Maudie and Pauly. Hmm...rather than chase the inside straight, I fold. Well, Pablo did go all in. 5 5 is not presto today! Pable shows the nut straight. Nice flop hippy!

Let's try it again. I raise Drizz's straddle. A J can be painful. Folds around to Drizz who defends the straddle. Nice hammer flop of 7 8 2 makes my bet of 5 seem like it is begging for the call. No call and I drag a pot!

"Straddle raise, reraise. You know I have junk", says Pauly as he goads his brother to call.
"I've heard rumors..." Maudie responds to the delight of the table.
Change 100 pushes....
Drizz calls.
The action is now on Derek. He hasn't even looked at his hand. And he isn't very tempted to call right now. 16.75 is the cost to see the flop. Derek calls dark!!!

flop is all hearts, J 2 6. 8 on th turn, 4th heart on the board gives Drizz the flush as he shows 9 9. Change's aces have been cracked!!! Derek shows Q J. Drizz hangs his head in shame. Until he stacks his chips.

Pauly talks quite a bit smack while playing. He also folds a lot on the flop. Which of course means he will felt me soon.

If you haven't figured it out yet, here is the table.
Gracie is on my immediate left, with Derek on my right. Going clockwise is Change100, Maudie, BG, Pauly, Sweet Sweet Pablo, Ftrain, and Drizz.

So far I have learned you can't really live blog and play poker at the same time. If there are any tells being shown, I sure haven't been able to notice.

Derek is now in Bully mode. And BG and Pauly are determined to smack him down. Flop of Q 4 3 and BG is betting 15. Derek goes over the top for just 8.5 more and BG has to call. K Q by BG takes it down. Rebuy Derek!

I need another drink.

It is official. Sweet sweet Pablo is no more. It is now just Sweet Sweet. Thank Ftrain for that one.

Aces are no good again. This time, Derek is the victim. Pauly flops a straight and busts Changle and his bro. "Whip out them tens" Yes, please ladies, whip out those 10s!

Finally, aces hold up! Sweet sweet shows the red guys

Friday, September 21, 2007

Short game

I think I played all of 2 hands in the RiverChasers tournament last night. I showed up about an hour and 10 minutes after the start. Hey, I was busy enjoying beer at the bar. What do you expect?

I raised with 8 8 in LP to win the blinds.

A couple hands later, I would go over the top of Astin with A Qs. My re-raise was just over a min raise so his call with J J was expected. Though I sucked out an A on the flop, the J on the turn sealed the deal and I was out.

I found myself wondering if that was the best play. I think blinds were 120/240. I believe his raise was a standard 3xs the blinds. My re-raise was to 1800 or so putting me all in. Was pushing all in the best play, or can I put basically half my chips in to see a flop or risk being re-raised by someone else?

If I see a flop with A high, there is no guarantee he folds either, though making a call there with Jacks doesn't seem too bright to me.


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Junk kicking Razz

It happened again and again last night. Have 4 great cards and then brick out the last 3. Man I hate Razz. But just like peanut M&Ms, I can't stop. I took the beats again and again. At least I didn't go on tilt like this other guy. Yeah, that is my excuse for not stopping and I am sticking to it even though it is beyond lame.

I will make the money up on FTrain though. He has a sick prop bet going that says he can gain 17 pounds by the time the WPBT event in December rolls around. Gaining weight sounds easy, but I am going with the Rooster's thoughts on this one. NYC is a walking town and whether he realizes it or not, he will be moving about and not gaining weight.

Plus, I have faith that Dawn will do something if he gets anywhere close. I hear she can be sneaky that way.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

I played!

It was just a sit n go. But it was after 5 hours of beer and bourbon so that must count for something. And in a nice drunken fashion, I took it down!

I think I pissed off the guy too because I got lucky with A 5 against his 10 10 to take the chip lead when it was heads up. Once I had the lead, I knew I could outplay him. Sure enough, flopped two pair and he tried to bully me with the big bet. His middle pair was no good and I am $45 richer.

Baby steps....

Thursday, September 06, 2007

What chicken???*

No, not chicken. The game is HORSE and it is on in London at the WSOP V.europe. Dr. Pauly and change100 are on the scene with the rest of the PokerNews crew.

I must give them credit for the report so far. The stories they have coming back are perfect for a slow moving limit event. German tourists sitting in. Debates between baseball and cricket, football and soccer. Jetlag for the Americans. Seriously, this may be the best way to waste time at work today and tomorrow on Friday.

* I will buy anyone a 6-pack if they can tell me what the title of the post is in reference to. Anyone beside Al and Blood that is. How I will get the sixer to you is a dilemma in its own right but there has to be a way.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Someone should get slapped

I am not sure exactly who should get slapped for what they showed on last night's telecast of the WSOP. It was Day 2 for both shows and we did get to see some interesting hands. Like Scotty Nguyen's quad 9s. Or Daniel Negreanu calling out other people's cards. That was just plain scary.

But, like we see all too often, we get the dickweeds. And that is where the dilemman begins. Who should get slapped, the dickweed who makes the bad play, gets lucky and wins and acts like his dickweed self because he is on the TV table, or the people at ESPN who decide to show this dickweed on their show because they believe it is good TV?

I think Negreanu should have bitch slapped the guy on his right. Dude tries to make a play with K 9s, gets re-raised and then ends up calling the all in with his flush draw that he hits on the river. Sure he was committed on the flop, but calling that bet preflop was stupid. Yelling and cheering for himself after he lucked out gave him the checkmark for being a dickweed. He should be ashamed. Instead he acts like he outplayed one of the better tournament players.

Later he would get cocky when he once again, sucked out a flush on the river. Finally, he would even make some smart ass comment when Danny boy got knocked out.

Now, I am not a huge fan of Negreanu, but I would have paid money to see him call the dickweed out and make him say that last comment louder so he could hear it and then furthermore, lay into him for being such a dickweed. That would have been good TV.

Then someone could slap the people at ESPN who think that is what people want to watch. Makes sense why those dipshits didn't hire Pauly. They didn't want to improve the show.

Maybe the thing that gets me the most is that dickweed used to be a dealer!!! He should know better about how to act at a table.

Why can't we get more stories like Kirk Morrison. Here was a guy who won a bracelet, does well in tournaments but decides to move off to New Zealand. He comes back and sees how the game has changed and how he needs to adapt. Sure they don't want to give his style of play away but I wanted to hear more of what he had to say about how the younger crowd is playing the game preflop and his strategy of seeing more flops. That would have been much better than some dickweed mouthing off.

Thursday, August 30, 2007


What it is on the menu...

Sublimely elegant this toffee toned Bock is rich with a blend of Wisconsin and German barley malts. Over four months of resting in oak Bourbon Barrels gives this beer a wonderfully smooth body that will improve and mellow with age. Should you choose to enjoy this classic today you can expect a treasure of vanilla, oak and caramel notes to be bolstered by hops from France, Slovenia and Germany. Wild Brett yeast sings in harmony to the tune of Bock. 20 degrees Plato OG makes this Bourbon Barrel a masterwork to remember.

-New Glarus Bourbon Barrel Bock
How does that sound?

Followed by....

Named after the cream colored bricks used to build Milwaukee, this amber pale ale with its pronounced hops and hints of citrus is tasty year round.

-Lakefront Cream City Pale Ale

Ok, so the Lakefront Brewery guys really need to work on a better description of their beers.

I shall be heading down to Chicago to meet up with the Donkey Puncher and then invade Wrigley to watch the Milwaukee Brewers beat up on the Chicago Cubs. I can say that only because the Brewers won last night, making today's game a big one. I can't think of how totally insufferable Cub fans would have been today had the Crew lost last night and was facing a sweep. Yost said coming in that they needed to win the series. A sweep would be nice but 2 of 3 is what mattered. Now they have a chance.