Monday, June 30, 2008

I wanted to like it

Like Pokerpeaker, I was listening to the new Motley Crue album the other day. My expectations weren't high. I was a huge Crue fan years ago. I still listen to the music but I have become too accustomed to the new music not being all that great. Worse yet, they kept putting out anthologies and greatest hits packages, not an entire new album.

I got a copy and put it in my car to give it the once over. I listen to music better when I am driving. Fewer distractions. Road and music. First track is a long intro to the album. Eh. First song is ok. Second song is ok. Third song starts in the same manner. Right away I am thinking this album is a disappointment.

Then it changed. The lyrics jumped out as Vince Neil sang about their early years and the fond memories at the Whisky a Go Go. Next thing I know my head is moving a bit.

Fourth song is the one they released. I didn't think too much of it when I heard it on the radio but coming out of the speakers it sounded different. More powerful. Alive. Crue-ish.

As each song came on, I liked the disc even more. As Peaker said, it rocks.

So where the hell am I going with this and what does it have to do with poker?

This disc had me thinking of a book I had read last month. A book I wasn't sure I would like but one I knew I had to read. I had spent some time listening to this man tell some stories back in December. I actually bought the book in January and let it sit there for 5 months. The man was the genuine article and I hung on every word he had to offer at the lunch table.

The thing was, I didn't think I would like the book. Pauly and Iggy gave it good reviews, but I didn't like the excerpts as I read them on Iggy's blog. They didn't interest me.

That all changed when I began reading the book at the airport on a trip to NYC. I couldn't put it down. On the flight home it was the same story. I was entranced. The story hooked me and I had to find out how it ended.

If you haven't read Johnny Hughes' Texax Poker Wisdom yet, you are missing out on a great read. If you read the parts on Iggy's blog and didn't think you would like it, get the book. Those excerpts when put into context read better. At least for me they did. One of the best books I have read in a long time. Glad I finally got around to reading it after buying it months before.

Just like the Crue, Johnny has a hit that many probably haven't heard. Yet. Try them out. I am willing to bet you will like them.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Why didn't I think of that?

Tao of Poker

Benjo told me a hilarious story about how Bellagio hookers were trying to cash
tournament chips at the cage.
Apparently, a couple of horny and angle-shooting poker players removed $1,000 denomination tournament chips out of play. They used those chips to pay off hookers, who were not very bright and accepted the chips in return for sexual favors. Of course they did not read the fine print on the chips where it said it's not legal tender and only a tournament chip.

Horny Poker Players 1, Dumb Hookers 0.

I bet that would still work this winter. Unless hookers have a newsletter to alert each other of this scam. I am hoping they don't.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Bodog improving

One of the more interesting tournament series over the past couple of months was the Bodog Blogger Tournament. Week after week Bodog kicked in some extra money, making winning extra profitable for those who made the money. Personally I wouldn't know because I wasn't able to play each of the tournaments and I didn't properly adjust to the structure.

Rumor is this tournament may return in a couple of months. Smokee put in some hard work getting it up and running so hopefully he can pull it off again. Next time around I will make sure I get enough money on to cover more than 5 or 6 weeks.

Better yet, Bodog has worked to improve their software. They listened to what their players wanted and responded. The latest version is currently in beta testing but you can download it to view the new features now. Online poker is getting better. I am going to do just that in any attempt to gain a small advantage over the competition.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Pokerspace Crew Cup Competition

No limit Hold’em poker, weekly small buy-ins, countless freerolls, spirited teams, top notch lessons, amazing prizes, and a dash of friendly rivalry. Only at Pokerspace will you find teams competing against each other in poker to win the Pokerspace Crew Cup!

The first to devise the idea of a Poker Crew competition, Pokerspace gives users a chance to form teams of up to 6 members and compete against each other. Users earn points for their teams, and through various tournaments can qualify to enter the Crew Cup Final. In a final tournament for all the qualifiers, the Crew that dominates will win the final prize. The latest competition successfully ended in June, sending six users on a $25,000 trip to Vegas to play in the 2008 WSOP.

With the completion of our first Crew Competition, it’s time to announce the latest Crew Cup contest. Hosted by Card Player Cruises, Carbon Poker, and Pokerspace, it will kick off July 2nd run until September 27th. The Crew Cup Final for qualifiers will take place on October 12th.

The crews will be battling for 6 all expenses paid trips aboard Card Players Cruises’ 7 night Mexican Riviera Cruise. Starting in San Diego, the cruise will visit hotspots like Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta in Mexico and offer several different tours. Possible excursions include dolphin encounters, horseback riding, sport fishing, and city tours. While not only offering your standard cruise trips and amenities, Card Player Cruises features a professional, fully staffed poker room open for the duration of the trip.

Check out for more details, and the chance to win the trip of a lifetime!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

the Circles of Poker Blogging Hell- 6

I thought I would be adding the latest circle to Poker Blogging Hell last week when I read a post from someone who claimed to be cheated in the Bodog tournament. It was both the claim and the reaction in the comments that I found amusing. I didn't expect Blinders to jump in with his thoughts on the Bodog tourney. Those two posts told me that the 6th circle of Poker Blogging Hell was real. The gist of this circle could have been added right after the 5th circle but it needed time to prove itself. Sadly, it did.

The 6th circle is inhabited by the cheaters and deceivers. They are out to get theirs by any means necessary.

Please, do not be so naive to think that cheating could not possibly occur in any of the blogger tournaments. I spoke with someone in Vegas about this last week. We both agreed that it would not be a shock if there was some cheating going on. The stakes are higher than most people thought they would be. With the generosity of Bodog and Full Tilt kicking raising the prize pool to such heights, people would do things that had not been anticipated in the past. With chance to win a $12,000 prize package for $11, it was bound to happen. We may think the people in the community would not stoop to lows but the fact is the action in the past BBT is a microcosm of what is happening in the Amazon Room at the Rio right now.

Cheating could easily happen in the blogger tournaments. This concept of “we all know each other and we wouldn’t fuck each other over” is beyond funny. People have already shit on the organizers, the websites, and whined about when they will be receiving prizes. Things have gotten bigger than expected and people will do what they can to get an edge just to massage their own egos. Face it, someone has most likely cheated in one of these tournaments.

Let's start with the backers. There are 2 players who disclosed that a backer had put them in a number of tournaments in the series. I am not saying these guys cheated. I have no proof to say they did, but also, I highly doubt they would have. But the question should be how many others had backers that were not disclosed? Were they playing in the same tournament at the same table? Was their chip dumping going on? How many of these teams were constantly chatting on the IM giving information or squeezing other players? It could have easily happened. With new people joining in these past months there were a number of names people did not recognize at first. We will never know if there were any shenanigans going on. But the possibility for it to happen was ripe.

Having new people come in to play these tournaments is a good thing. If there is a BBT 4, we will see even more new names. But how many of them may be existing bloggers who are setting up a front? A new blog that gives the perception of a totally different person. Playing under a different name is acceptable. It took a long time before most people knew my Full Tilt name. Some even advocate changing names ever so often in order to prevent others from tracking data on your play. I don't see anything wrong with doing so. There are no rules that state everyone needs to know what your screen name is.

Blinders goes off on Hoy for setting up a fake blog to play the Bodonkey. Was it cheating? Actually, yes. He may have not cheated at the table but he and those who were in on the scam, cheated everyone who played. This group conspired to deceive and defaud everyone who played in the tournament. To purposely set up a shell blog to lie and blast away at players and the site that is sponsoring the tournament series is deception. It is unethical and should not be tolerated. Even when confronted, Hoy denied his role until the end. A selfish act like this is a blow to the community that comes together to play cards and enjoy the company of each other. If people want to go that far to perpetrate a lie, what else would they do to cheat the community?

But who am I kidding. This isn't a community anymore. More like a dysfunctional family.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Monday, June 16, 2008

Good job FTrain and Iggy!

Go congratulate FTrain on his nice Razz run at the WSOP. Oh wait, it looks like most of you already have. I thought if there was one game at the WSOP that would be winnable it would be the Razz event. Too bad FTrain came up just a bit short. But look at the bright side. Had he won a bracelet, it would have pulled his arm out of its socket.

Then go congratulate the wee one. Iggy has won his way into the WSOP Main Event. Again, well done sir!

Who knows, maybe I will get lucky and win a SnG this week.

Update: One more! LJ won a seat in the ME as well!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Return of the YIPS

I was playing 3/6 at the Rio. I had pretty much folded every hand I had seen to this point. There wasn't anything good enough to battle with. So when I saw J 10 in the small blind, I decided to call the UTG raise. I decided to take a chance. With two other loose players in EP throwing their money in, I knew I would drag a big pot if I hit.

5 players see the flop. 8 9 x. I like it. I check instead of betting. Betting here is probably a good play but I rather let the original raiser do the work. Maybe I will check raise? Nah. Don't want to scare off action from the EPs. I just call the bet along with the others.

Turn is a 7. Bingo! Board is a beautiful rainbow to boot. I have the nuts. I am beginning to count my money. I check.

As I do, I feel the surge of adrenaline released into my blood stream. My heart starts pounding inside my chest. UTG bets as expected. EP calls and I announce "Raise". Heart is going crazy. An EKG machine would go ballistic if I was hooked up to one. I try to calmly put 12 chips into the pot. As I pull my hand away, I notice the shaking. I get called in 2 spots. The river is dealt and does not pair the board. I have the stone cold nuts now. I bet out and get called in both spots. My straight is good and I do take down a huge pot.

I breathe a sigh of relief. Not so much as in winning the hand, but to try and calm my nerves. I take my time stacking chips as my hands continue to shake.

WTF? I haven't gotten the poker YIPS in a long time. Why now? I talk with EasyCure a bit hoping that talking about my malady it will help but I do need to clean up the mass of white in front of my beer bottle. It takes some time but I am back to normal. I probably should have taken a walk around to work the adrenaline out of my system.

Later I am dealt A A. A new player in MP decided that J 7 off is a good hand to call a raise with. Though he flops two pair, he gets counterfeited on the river and again I take in a nice pot. No sign of the YIPS this time. I would get A A one more time and once again take in a nice pot. No YIPS there either. I would play somewhere between 1-2 hours at this table and win exactly 3 pots. I may have played 5 hands outside of my blinds. Yeah, I was that tight, but it worked.

I can't understand what I began to shake like that, especially during the only limit session I played. During all of the NL games, I flopped some nice hands but never found myself with a burst of energy that had my appendages flopping around like a fish out of water. I was much cooler in the NL games.

What gives? I would really like to know why it doesn't happen to me every time. I guess the only thing I can try to do is use it to my benefit one of these days.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Good plays, bad plays you know I've had my share

Of all the poker I played this past weekend, there are two plays that really stick in my mind. Both were the calls to big bets. You may think both were asinine. I am sure my opponent did on the one I made. But the other was what you hope and pray for when you sit at the table at the IP.

Falstaff and I had sat down at the 1/2 NL game at the IP. There were two young guys on both sides of me. Good players, knew their stuff. Talkative and funny, really enjoying the busty young waitress. I thought they were buddies but they weren't. Apparently they were not because one was Canadian. Who admits to being friends with a Canuck?* Anyways, the Canadian gives it some thought and raises from the 8 seat. Some dude in the 5 seat raises. Canadian thinks about it and raises another 100 on top. At that point everyone on the table knows he has aces. Maybe kings, but it is screaming aces. 5 seat thinks for just a bit and goes all in. I believe it was maybe 30-40 more. Insta call from the Canadian kid.

Now you must be thinking we are looking at A A vs A A, or at the very least A A vs K K, or possibly A A vs Q Q (that would be ugly but people overplay those ladies). Nope, instead the 5 seat shows A K offsuit. A stunned silence comes over the table. The flop is nothing, the turn a rock and the Canadian scoops a nice pot. Eyes blink in amazement that the 5 seat got it all in with A K off. Best yet, the 5 seat reaches into his wallet to rebuy! But then his buddy comes and pulls him away from the table as he wants to leave. I should have tripped the bastard on the way out. He took the biggest fish out of the game.

I played some pretty tight poker over the weekend. It was hard to keep mucking like that when the tables were on the loose side. So I tried to loosen up and made a raise to $15 with K Q off in MP (standard raise was anywhere from 10 to 17. I blame Falstaff for this). I got a call from the 10s who was in the cutoff. Both blinds called as well.. Flop was K 8 3, two hearts. The action was checked to me and I made a continuation bet of $25. The 10s seat called while the blinds dropped out. My thoughts on the 10s were varied. Initially I thought he wasn't that good when he made some aggressive plays early and rebought a couple of times. But then I noticed he was playing some good aggressive poker so he wasn't quite the chump I thought.

The turn brought another 8. I bet my two pair, $50. He smooth called again. Did he have an 8? Was he chasing the flush? River was a heart, a deuce I believe. Crap. Not what I wanted to see. Someone had just crapped in my Cheerios. At this point I checked. 10s now bets $75. Great, he craps twice in my Cheerios. What to do. Part of me wanted to toss those cards into the garbage behind me with all of my beer bottles. I then began to think about what was happening. Was he chasing a flush or did he have trips? I don't think he had the flush. He didn't appear to be one of those guys who would chase hoping to get lucky on the river. Could he have an 8? Not likely. He made a call from the cutoff. The only hand that would make sense then would be 8 8, call and hope you catch your set. Possible. Could he possibly be playing A 8 of hearts? Not likely. I doubt this kid would have called 15 with a suited ace. He was better than that. He could possibly have A K but I believe he would have raised on the turn with such a hand to squeeze out the flush draw.

Finally, I decided to call. All of his actions weren't adding up to me. Sure he could have been slow playing with trip 8s or chased a flush but it wasn't making sense. I figured he had K J and I pushed my chips in. When he asked if I had an 8, I felt good and told him I had the K. He mucked and they slid a nice pot to me. Unfortunately I did not see what he had. I guess he had a pocket pair and thought I was trying to buy the pot myself.

It was a good feeling to put things together and make such a call. We all like to be right. It also feels good when the players around you make comments about it being a sick call, how they would have folded etc. It was a moment that makes one feel good about some of the intricacies learned in this game over the years. Making a tough call like that is just about an equal as making a big bet like that to steal the pot. Just nice to be on the winning side of one of those hands.

*Please no Canadian hate mail. It is a joke. It isn't like I said "who admits to being friends with a Canuck, ay?"

Monday, June 09, 2008

That act don't play around here

The weekend in Vegas was just what I needed to get in a better frame of mind. Meeting up with old friends and meeting new people was what the doctor prescribed.

Not too shocking to say I had some mixed results in poker. Did well playing the NL games at Hooters, the Sahara and the IP. Made some money playing 3/6 limit with CA April at the Rio as well. It helps when the donkeys at the other end of your table don't crack your aces with J 7. The only bad session was one at Bill's Gambling Hall with Falstaff and the tournament at the Sahara where things were going well until I got frisky with J J. Ran that into A A to get knocked straight out.

I think the most interesting session was a late night stop in the Hooters poker room. I had heard a lot of local sharks like to feast on the tourists there. I am sure they were drooling when I sat my drunk ass down at around 2 in the morning. I was able to play pretty tight mainly because my cards were for shit. But then the best thing happened. A drunker player sat down. Their eyes lit up as they hoped for a chance to bust this guy out.

At first it didn't happen. The drunk guy was beating them, catching his draws and quickly chipping up. The guy had little clue on what he was betting at times. At one point, a dealer came to help him stack his chips because he was having problems doing so. She had stacked around 40 whites for the guy when the action came to him. He stared at the stack and declared, "I bet the white ones." I just about spat my beer out when he said it. Unfortunately for me, he would soon bust out.

Just after that happened I got my best hand of the night. I called a raise with 5 5 and promptly hit my set. When my opponent bet out 20, I came back with a min raise which was called. Turn was a blank. I bet out 75. He thought and called. The river was an ace. He checked to me again. I looked at the ace and accidentally said aloud, "I don't like that ace." Honestly, I didn't because it wouldn't have surprised me to see him turn up A A. I looked at the board and thought fuck it, I can crash if he caught the river. It was 3:10 and I was pretty buzzed up. So I slid my remaining 60 in. Apparently my opponent thought it was all an act because he laughed and said "That act don't play around here!" and mucked his cards. I started laughing myself, thinking this guy thought I was acting when the bottom line was I was on the drunken side. Hell, I couldn't act my way out of a paper bag.

Two more players got busted out leaving only 6 of us at the table. It was 3:30 when the thought dawned on me. The 3 locals had busted two ok players and the drunk guy. With the other drunk busting out, their eyes were on my stack. Best play I made was making a move for a rack and cashing in for just over $100.

Isn't there an old saying out there. If you don't spot the drunk at the table, it is you?

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Maybe I should put a bounty on my head...

I started laughing when I read that $mokee collected the bounty on his head by winning the tournament. That is going out in style!

Big thanks to Bodog for all the extra money they kicked into the series. I wished I could have played more of these tournaments or at the very least, played better in them. Anyways, my opinion is that all of us should show Bodog some love for all the love they gave us.

Just need to get through one more work day before I become more of a stumbling drunk gambler. I am not sure what I will be doing this weekend. I will play whatever game presents itself whether it be blackjack, pai gow, craps, or even those dreaded slots.

It will be interesting to see how my poker game fares. Usually I will play online for a couple of weeks to get a feel for things but this time around I have not. I don't think it is necessarily a bad thing. It may get me into a frame of mind where I am not over thinking plays. I am hoping that by sticking to the basics it means I have win and have fun.

Otherwise I have most of the Vegas pre-trip ritiuals down. Made a donation to a charity. Hey, if I can go toss some cash around like a drunken monkey for a couple days, I feel the least I can do is give some to people who can put it to good use. Have keys to the house set aside for friend. Bills are paid.

I just need to swing by the bank to pick up some cash. About the only change I may make involved stopping at McDonalds on the way to the airport. Not that I am superstitious but I recall the best results I had in Vegas involved me stopping by McDonalds on the way to the airport for a quick bite. That flight was scheduled at 4 just like this one. I figure some fries on the way can't hurt, can it?

Monday, June 02, 2008

Knock out $mokee and win a prize!

I am disappointed I won't get a chance to knock $mokee out of the Bodog tomorrow. I will either be at the stadium watching the Brewers game or working late. Good luck to everyone, especially for whoever is lucky enough to cash in on the bounty.

The BIGGEST bounty ever in the history of blogger tournaments is on the head of $mokkee, the Bodog blogger tournament host, adding an extra T$270 in value to Tuesday's June 3rd poker blogger tournament! The lucky poker blogger to eliminate $mokkee will be rewarded with a seat in Bodog's WSOP* Semifinal 5 Seat Guaranteed Tournament scheduled for June 8 at 3:15 pm ET. Details at

Poker Blogger Tournament Puts Bounty on $mokkee

Bodog is proud to host the Bodog Poker Blogger Tournament Series where poker bloggers worldwide are gathering each Tuesday in the Bodog Poker Room. One lucky blogger will win a $12,000 WSOP* prize package and be a part of Team Bodog 2008. This tournament is open to poker bloggers from around the globe with a Bodog Member Player Account.