Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Another Mookie, another quick exit.

There were 61 runners in the Mookie last night. I wasn't one of them. Sure I was entered, but I wasn't in contention after about 10 minutes. Once again I donked myself out. I started off well and thought I was focused but I was wrong.

My starting table was going to be interesting

Joe Speaker

23 skiddoo

AQo to start off the tournament. There was 1 limper so I go with pot bet. I wasn't worried about running into a fancy play with A A right off the bat. Flop is A high with 2 hearts and I bet 300 and take down the first hand. Some people believe if you win the first hand, you are destined to lose. I don't believe that that crap. At least, not yet.

Soon I would get K K in the BB. It folds around to SB who completes. I bump it up to 115 and he calls. Hmmm. Flop is Q Q 3. Did he call with paint? I toss out a bet to see his reaction. A smooth call would be suspicious. Instead, it is a fold. Good to know the cowboys won't get cracked right away.

I went to get a beer and missed some action. Speaker was out! Apparently he flopped a set with his 10s. Problem was GMoney flopped a set of Queens. Ouch!

I am raising a lot of pots now that I jumped out to a small lead. With A Jo, I raise another. But then there is a re-raise. I decide to gamble and call. Flop is all diamonds though. Crap! I quickly fold.

I then fold for the next 25 minutes and promptly donk out with A 8s. Yep, A 8s. I was finishing up a SnG and was paying more attention to that. Some guy was winning pots with crap hands (including a big pot he took off of me with bottom pair) and I didn't like him. So with all the folding I was doing in the Mook, I wanted some action there. So I raised in EP. Osu called as did one other. Flop was K high but with two clubs. Hey, I have two clubs. So I check-raised him hoping my A was good. It wasn't as he showed A K. No club and I make another early exit.

One thing I must remember is that you cannot check raise someone if you don't have enough chips to scare him off. Man was that an atrocious play! I hang my head in shame just thinking about it. Heck, it was a piss poor showing last night. Hopefully the RiverChasers can pick me up.

At least I won the SnG.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007


I haven't been playing much poker lately. With much nicer weather, I would rather be outside than stuck in front of a pc. But that doesn't stop me from reading during the day. Sometimes I don't like what I see. There seems to be changes going on the blogosphere. To me, most of these changes aren't that good. I could say they are rather sad.

It appears more people would rather read someone bitch about losing a hand than a decent trip report or how someone played their tournament. Reading a good rant can be entertaining but when everyone else begins to do it, it gets tired. Quick. Especially when people think that insulting someone for the way they played a hand is the epitome of entertainment.

This shift towards just bitching about how lucky someone else got just isn't good. Or insulting others for how they played in a blogger tournament. If you cannot sniff out the Hammer, then you shouldn't be playing poker. If you do not realize that they games are more social than serious poker, maybe it isn't the game for you. Don't assume that others are not taking the game seriously because they are playing on the loose side. Ever think that you just so happen to catch them while they were changing gears? Or that maybe they had a bad read and just so happened to get lucky. It happens. Get over it and yourself.

I don't see BadBlood, F-Train, the guys at Up for Poker, or others complaining about their bad beats. They don't have Matusow meltdowns or Hellmuthian blowups. They get over it quickly and don't need a profanity laced tirade to paint the picture of what happened. The funny thing about this, is I would bet most of the players bitching probably do not care for Hellmuth or Matusows style, but they are falling in their line, walking down that same path.

Vegas is just over a week away. Looking over the list of attendees so far has been somewhat disappointing. Looks like the old guard that first started these fun gatherings is mostly absent. I am all for meeting new people but seeing old friends was something I always looked forward to. Maybe the list isn't updated. There has got to be more than 31 people showing up. I am not complaining though. It does take some work to get all of this done so go thank Falstaff for his efforts. Make sure to buy him a cold one when you see him in the bowling alley.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Rollercoasting the Mookie

I never limp with A A.

Well almost never. Actually, I like to believe I will not limp.

But there I was at the final table of the Mookie last night, I believe second in chips, limping either UTG or UTG+1 with A A.

I believe I was called in 3 places. Not good.

I ended up losing to a set of 6s, hit on the flop. Can't say they would have folded that hand to a raise or not. I doubt it so to an extent, it probably didn't matter. But I think I would have been happier having my aces cracked with I had raised the hand.

Instead I went out with a wimper in 6th? I think so. Not sure as I had gotten back from the bar just in time to play and throughout the course of the night, drank the rest of the beer I had in the house. I was even encouraged to run out to the store and get more at the break. Would have if I could have. Stores were already closed. Instead, I had a bottle of Maker's Mark to hit if needed.

I was a bit surprised to make the final table. The deck was hitting me hard early. As Joe Speaker put it, it was giving me a concussion. And I was doing my best to take advantage of it. I built my stack up and wielded it pretty well. It afforded me the opportunity to really mix up my play. Gave me the chance to not only steal, but to resteal as well. Restealing is a much better rush than stealing.

I was cruising pretty well, sitting in the top 3 for most of the first 2 hours. Then I lost with A K
vs 7 7 and dropped right to the bottom. I was getting ready to break stuff over the cursed tournament until the deck slapped me around again. A couple timely pushes and doubles got me right back into the game.

So I was disappointed that I wasn't able to make a mad rush at the end. I am not happy with the way I played those aces. I felt I could catch Zeem, who apparently had crushed his other tables and had a big lead. But I screwed the pooch instead. Oh well. Can't complain too much to getting back into the game. Congrats to willwonka on the victory.

Check out Linda's rant at Table Tango about Harrah's expo during the WSOP, The Gaming Life Expo-Girls, Games, and Gear. Strange something like that happens still happens today.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Big Game

It was going to be tough playing the Big Game. The Sopranos were on and battling for my limited attention span. It didn't help to start at this table:
Julius Goat

Big Pirate

Just lovely. 49 started and I get a table with the top 2 from the leaderboard. I have tourney player Hoy and the never sleeping Pauly as well. I think was really ticked me off was each of these people have a game I respect. No soft players here. Except for me. Hopefully I could get through the first hour. With the Sopranos and then Entourage, it wasn't going to be easy. I had every intention to play really tight.

Got aces early but got nothing but the blinds. I was UTG and was tempted to limp, but decided it was too early for that. About the only other hand I played was with Iggy where I flopped a set of deuces. He didn't bite on the re-raise but it was a nice little pot.

I was happy to make it through the Sopranos with no damage. Especially after Tony busted up the guy's jaw. Brutal!

As Entourage began, I thought of loosening up but once the bikinis were on with Drama at a pool, I knew I shouldn't. It felt like the table was busy feeling each other out for the first 30 minutes. Only one big action hand had occurred and I didn't want to do something stupid to cause the second. It was like a boxing match and I was willing to spar along for the next 30 minutes.

Had one interesting hand come up. There was a limper from mid position. With A Ko, I raised it pot from the cutoff. The button and blinds folded. But then the limper re-raised. WTF? I thought it out a bit and folded. I wish I had more time (and had the TV off) to figure out what was happening. I kind of regret the fold. I don't think they were really that strong after I thinking about it.

Once Entourage was over, I realized now I had no excuses. Time to buckle down and plays some poker. At the end of the first session, I was down a bit to 2565. I had my work cut out for me.

I didn't play many hands. Cards were on the cool side. The only pot I took down was from the BB and I got lucky on the river. But I had plenty of time. No need to do something stupid just because I was bored. Besides, the table hadn't changed much. Still not many confrontations going on.

I avoided one myself. I tried to steal Pauly's blind and he pushed back. Following through with J 10 wasn't right so I had to fold. Next hand I come right back with A Qs. Being a stubborn person, I pushed when Bayne practically forced me all in. My thought was he was pushing back just like Pauly did and had A rag. I got lucky when I hit my flush on the turn. Should have known bayne-a solid player- for a better hand than A rag.

I then began the processs of folding for an hour. I don't think I raised the entire second session. The table had changed a bit. We had smaller stacks that weren't afraid to shove. Any stupid play would be painful. And I was determined not to make one of them.

Soon, I was right back to the starting stack. I wasn't getting much traction at all. Jumped up to 4500 but that was about it. The cards weren't getting any better andif I did see a flop from the blinds, it completely missed. I was fighting hard not to go crazy with steals because I sure didn't have any hands that would likely stand up.

I was in bad shape at the second break. On life support. My cards were beyond dead. I was praying for any ace to push with and couldn't even get that. Now I had little choice but to make a move with any two cards. I wouldn't have to worry about the blinds for a couple of hands but the antes were going to kill me.

I went out with a wimper at 19. Iggy's pocket deuces held up to my A 4s. It was the best hand I had seen in an hour. I wasn't surprised it didn't hit. Maybe I will do better next time.

Friday, May 18, 2007

No chasing here

When I looked at the RiverChasers leader board earlier in the day, I immediately had one goal in mind. Pass Al in the standings. If I couldn't cash, I wanted to do well enough to pass up the hippie in the standings.

I was going to play tight. No stupid moves like the one I tried in the Mookie the previous night. I was going to find spots to hit big pots instead of little ones. I even tried a Phil Hellmuth trick and showed up 30 minutes late.

None of that mattered. I was beyond card dead. Pocket pairs twice, A Q once. That was it. So it wasn't too surprising that when I got K K, that A J would suck out on the river. That's poker. I did earn a couple points (I think), but not enough to get past Al who easily outlasted me.

I did wonder if I made a mistake of being too tight. Blinds were 60/120 when I got the kings. I only had 385 (?) in chips. I was pathetically low as my last two blinds were the same old crap I had been receiving. Sure any two cards can win, but I have a problem getting all my chips in with a 30% chance of winning. Call me strange.

But then again, sometimes you need to do just that. I don't think it would have mattered though even when I had 600. With Hoy doing the raising, I knew I couldn't push him off any hand with a raise of just 300 more. He is calling every day and twice on Sundays for a minimum more. And Q 3 ain't going to cut it either.

So I sadly went out with a wimper. The best hand of the night defeated. At least I got hooched up at the bar and only paid $10 for 6 beers- half of that ten went to the bartender as a tip.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Small w

I think I can chalk up yesterday as one in the W column. At least as a small w.

I haven't been playing much lately. With better weather, there are most things in life to enjoy. And I think by not playing as much poker lately, I have been enjoying the game more.

Beside the weather, blasting away most of my Full Tilt bankroll had not helped. In fact, it took me off of my game. Instead of playing any of the guarantee tournaments, I was playing the token tournaments for cheaper entries. And it wasn't working. I found myself playing my opponent's game, not mine.

It wasn't until I was below $100 that I realized what I was doing. It felt like I was waiting for the monthly welfare check from FTP to arrive. In fact, I thought of not playing for a couple of months to allow it to build back up. Or I could go back to the tried and true practise of playing SnGs for cash. I knew if I could stay focused, I could be patient and wait out the small stacks when bubble time was around and punish them when good cards arrived. Or in some cases didn't.

So I felt good cashing in two of three SnGs last night. They were only $10 buy-ins but I need to start somewhere. Sticking around to 11 in the Wheatie helped boost some confidence as well. Though it felt like my cards were total shit for most of the tournament, I found some areas I could exploit and felt I could make that final push. If only I didn't have to chop a pot, I would have been in contention (calling my push with K 7 for 3/4 of your chips is a great move! Damn board had to pair a second time!)

Now I wonder if I can shake this monkey they call the Mookie off my back tonight?

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Mind boggling video

I think I may have been as stunned as Iggy was when I viewed this video . It is mind boggling in so many ways that it cannot be real. In the end, I am not sure what was worse, some of the thoughts he had (such as 9 4 being a better hand than A 9 because of the straight possibilities???) or that he may have a blog featuring strategy on play money tournaments.

Just remember, learn to fear K 7. It is a pretty good hand!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Next time

I missed the RiverChasers Bracelet race tonight. Got back in to town from camping all weekend and didn't turn the computer on until it was an hour in. That stunk. I spent time last week earning a token just for that tournament. Feels like a waste.

Whenever things are going bad for me, I like to switch the sites I play at. I think I am going to take the time to play at Bodog some more. The overlays on their guaranteed tournaments made it worthwhile. The quality of player is still not that great too. Plus, they have a number of WSOP qualifiers running, giving you a chance to turn a buck into millions.

Thursday, May 10, 2007


Thanks Falstaff. I hate you.

I loathe memes. Hate them with a passion. Rarely do I even respond. You know the memes that include a question like "Who is least likely to respond?" I bat 1.000 in those among my friends. They know I will not respond with anything but "Please do send this bullshit my way!"

But better people that I have done it so I will play along this one time. Plus, I needed something to do while this boring conference call was going on.

1. If I ruled the world, I would ban certain music in bars. For starters, you would never hear AC/DC's "Shook me All Night Long", Meatloaf's "Paradise by the Dashboard Lights", or Van Morrison's "Brown Eyed Girl" ever again in a bar. Too many knuckleheads that feel the need to scream out the chorus (rarely do they know the rest of the song) at the top of their drunken lungs. Also, all Dave Matthews Band would be banned. It is bar buzzkill music.

2. Early in my career, I worked on an IPO for a wrestling company out of Florida. Went down to for a due diligence meeting and met the people involved like the Macho Man and the Bushwackers. I spoke with the main guy involved and he swore he could get me involved as a wrestling manager. Unfortunately, the IPO never got off the ground and I never did get my fame in fortune in the squared circle. My shot at glory in sports entertainment is gone. Yes, I still watch wrestling. It is the best soap opera around for men.

3. Remember the episode of Seinfeld where Jerry cannot remember what his girlfriend's name was? He kept looking for stuff that would show what it was. I did that once. Woke up the next morning with a girl and for the life of me could not recall her name. When she asked if she could take a shower, I quickly obliged and got her a towel. While the water ran, I ran through her purse looking for a drivers licence. And no, her name was not Dolores.

4. I have one fear in life. A fear of regret. I do not want the opportunity to do something come and go without taking advantage of it if I can. I don't like thinking back on life and saying "Damn, I should have done that back in college, or why didn't I go there when I had chance?" I think back to high school and how I wish I would have played football. To college where I wish I would have gone to Florida with my girlfriend. Life if about living and I intend to live while I can.

5. I own all the Autograph CDs as well as most of the work of Huey Lewis and the News on disc too. I also own most of the Duran Duran albums on vinyl. I even owned a Duran Duran t-shirt. Thankfully I grew out of that 80s stuff in college. I thought I would toss in some embarrassing stuff just for shits and giggles.

6. I had a role (albeit a minor one) in a major mutual fund scandal a couple years ago. Spent some hours talking with company attorneys and somehow did not need to speak with SEC or a certain AG from the east coast. That is all I can say about that here, except I was taken care of later.

7. I have a bad habit of watching people eat and then critiquing them. If I am dining with someone, I can help but notice any quirks they may have such as not letting food touch other food or how they eat like all of their vegetables first then the meat. That kind of thing. I used to eat with a guy who would cut his spaghetti into little tiny bits. WTF? Same person would cut his wife's meat like a mother does for a child. Drove me nuts.

Also like others, I shall kill my meme portion here, no tagging.

The Mook rolls me again

It was another miserable showing in the Mook. In fact, it was a miserable night of poker. I went 1-3-1. That would be a small win at HORSE, 3 losses in MTT (two token SnGs), and a break even at Razz.

The two losses in the SnGs really sucked. One guy hit his two outer and I check raised him all in with TPTK. I felt good about the move until his K hit the turn. Soon, in the other SnG, I would push with a short stack with A Ks and run into 10 10. As good as the K on the flop looked, it paled in comparison to the 10 that hit the board as well.

Yep, nothing like playing for an hour to go home with nothing.

In the Mook, I semi-donked my chips away. I didn't play a hand for the first 15 minutes. I figured I could raise with just about anything and get away with it. That was a bad idea. Sure I got loose with K 9, but the flop of Q J 8 with 2 clubs gave me a gut. I figured most people would have noticed my tight play so I tossed out the continuation bet, about half the pot to make it look like I wanted the call. Turn was no help and I bet half the pot. I now had my opponent on a flush draw. If the river was a blank, I would push. Sure enough, I pushed. And was called by A J.

Being called down by second pair irked me a bit. I didn't have to fire all 3 bullets, but it was the only way to take it down. Now one could argue that they had a read on me. If so, I say bullshit! I had never played with this person before and had not played a single hand (except for the blinds) up to this point. All I could do was sigh and put a note on his name.

It could have been worse. At least I didn't get slowrolled by him. On the next hand, with just 30 left, I was all in with A Q. Same guy and Otis got involved. From what I recall, the action unfolded just like the previous hand. Otis kept firing away, but I believe he actually had something unlike me. On the river, Otis pushed. The other player took his time and then started talking.


"are you sure?"

He then called showing a full house, made on the turn.

Not good. People, no matter what, don't be an ass at the table. There is rarely a place for slowrolling an opponent. It will come back to kick you in the ass. And that could literally. I am sure this donkey will get his soon enough.

To an extent, I am happy there is no River Chasers tonight. Just not running well. I don't think it is necessarily my game that is bad right now (part of it no doubt, but not all), just can't get over the hump. I may not play until next week at this point. I need some tokens for the WPBT even as well as the RC bracelet. Hopefully, I can score those soon.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


I haven't played much poker lately. Besides hitting up some of the blogger tournies, my bankroll on Full Tilt has been on the low end. When I do play I try to earn tokens for other events so it has been kinda boring. I need to hit one nice score to lift the funds up so I can get reckless again.

Maybe this Sunday in Miami Don's Big Game...

It is just under a month away. Only 29 days until Vegas.

I am so in need of a vacation to just get away. Go somewhere without a care in the world, with plenty of booze to keep me going. I heard they have that in Vegas so I figured I must go.

I have spent some time game planning for the trip. Nothing is ever set in stone. Going with the flow works well in Vegas, but having ideas can help. Thus I am searching around looking for things that might be interesting.

I get in Wednesday around 11 pm. Should be checked in at the Rio and good to go by midnight or so. Hopefully I can get in touch with Pauly, Change, or Otis and see if they are done working for the day so I can buy them a drink or five. Before hitting up some Pai Gow of course.

For once, there is actually some music I wouldn't mind seeing. Usually bands that interest me play either a week before or a week after I am in Vegas. For example, I see Tesla is playing the week after. But of interest is Metal Skool (Thursday) and Richard Cheese (Sunday) both at the Hard Rock. There has to be some hair metal fans that wouldn't mind crashing the Metal Skool show.

And in between drink and toss chips like a fish.

I should be playing the WWdN tonight. Hope to see some people there.

And brdweb, if you read this, shoot me an email I need to transfer your the funds from the bracelet race.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Another uninspring Mook

Walking the line of loose aggressive and mixing up your game can be troublesome. I tried it last night and basically got nowhere in the Mookie. From the get go I was done, running A Q into a turn push that I had to fold. From there it never got any better. The highest chip count I believe I had was 1700.

Thus when my Q Q was cracked by jjok's 10 10, it just seemed fitting. I expected the 10 to hit, just wasn't sure if it would be the flop, turn or river. Those queens were the best hand I saw all night. Thus we my crappy play before, I really didn't deserve to earn any points.

It somewhat felt like a kick in the gut then when I walk into work and quickly notice Howard Lederer's puss on the front page of the Wall Street Journal. The article (hope the link works) is simple. Is poker a game of skill or luck? Sadly they don't answer their own question.

But Lederer does have one great argument.

"The vast majority of high-betting poker hands are decided after all players
except the winner have folded. So if no one shows his cards, can you
legally argue that the outcome was determined by luck?"

Check out the article if you can. But do yourself a favor and skip over Annie Duke's stupid comment about losing on purpose. It is not the brightest thing a poker player can say.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Corrections and congratulations

I realized in my haste to post about the Blogger tourney, that I did not update the actual prize. Sir Al was kind enough to pony up the extra dough to ensure a seat was won. Congrats to brdweb on his win. You could go and leave a comment but his comments require some log in that most people probably don't have.

Last fall during the trip to the Bash, I played some blackjack with brdweb. He went on a tear, stacking up chips while I couldn't hit squat. Seeing how he has offered 1% to all final tablers from the tourney, I will have to sweat him a bit in his event. I just need to check what day #15 is on. If he can hit his stride at the WSOP, we may all make a little pocket change.