Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Calm After the Storm

First my condolences to all of the Katrina victims and to those who are forced to live elsewhere while the clean-up begins. As I have not been able to follow the news lately, thank you CJ and Gracie for getting me updated.

Here is a link to Yahoo's collection of Katrina news stories.

This is a link to Network For Good which links up the major relief organizations such as United Way.

A link to a Metroblogger who's giving updates to the flooding situation in New Orleans.


To switch gears like a pro here how about some poker stuff? There was another fun night at the micro limit O8 games as Princess Maigrey graced me and Easycure with her presence. Felicia attempted to play limit and PL with us and had to leave our game since the two games are very different.

I agree.

One is about having the best hand and extracting the maximum from your opponents (limit), the other is about representing a hand, pushing people off their hands, and building a pot for profit should you hit your hand (pot limit). I know I tend to get overly aggressive in a limit if I'm playing NL or PL at the same time and cost myself several bets chasing draws that could be dead. Such as a flush draw when the board pairs on the flop. I made the mistake last night of drawing to a second best twice on the $100NL table and it cost me. I was looking at the size of the opponent's stack rather then his obvious "I've got a better hand then you" bets. Its only $XX.XX to call, why not take a shot.

Bad attitude.

Bad poker.

This is a major leak in my cash game. Tournaments I'm all business whether its a $1 or $50 for the buy-in and I fight for every chip I can get my piano players fingers on. In cash games I sometimes let my mind wonder when the relative size of the bet compared to my stack is small, rather then assess the situation (pot odds, are my draws receiving the right price, position, how many drinks I'm in for the night). Its NOT the total stakes, its the bet size in relation to the table (a $1 bet at a $100 table is much different then a $1 bet at a $.01/$.02 table). Granted I'll play a little looser at the micro tables but that's for a different reason, loosen the table up, and shift back to nut peddling and get paid off with second best hands calling you down. Its an experiment in LAG poker (necessary for this self-proclaimed rock), so far I do see merits in playing a Loose-Aggressive Game as you DO present a manaic persona to even the densest (neato new word?) low limit player would recognize. Even someone who is just trying read his hand will take notice to someone 4-betting/potting the flop everytime.

The trick is getting away from hands with little potential once you're called. Kind of like overplaying AK in Hold Em' after the flop when nothing hits. Size up the board and ask, is he/she drawing, do they have a pocket pair that they'll clutch on to like a Prada purse? will a scare card and another bet on the turn take it down? And the biggest question for a LAG pushing a non-hand... does my opponent possess the ability to fold? This goes to BadBlood's recent post about Level 0 thinking. If you're going to get called down while holding JACK HIGH (cue Elix Powers) by someone on a King high pair draw, then checking it down to lose the minimum is NOT negative EV.

You get to show your busted straight/flush draw, the attempt to take the pot with jack high AND you gain valuable information about an opponent. Not only do you gain the likely hood of reading "he bluffed before and I had to call/raise" in the chat box (or in the conversation if you're lucky enough to play live poker) when you nail that nut flush, you save the bets that would have been wasted in a feeble attempt to trick a brick. Don't let your ego get in the way. Much like sitting in a deer stand waiting for that one shot in eight hours to shoot Bambi or Thumper, have the patience to wait out your opponent.

I'm probably spewing out some idioticy in my words above, but I'm trying to speak of my struggles I've had in trying to break out of the "break-even" player mold. If it helps someone struggling to find their game great! If it hurts then you didn't hear it here.


I watched a little bit of the WSOP on ESPN as I was just coming home from softball and caught Michael Gracz (sp?) calling an all-in after the flop with Ace high to beat King high on a paired board after calling an initial raise. Scary good? Or dumb luck? The kid didn't get that far in major tournaments over the past 7 months by being an idiot. Maybe a touch of luck, but you need that to win. One thing Norman Chad did get right... he was entertaining to watch and a breath of fresh air for not doing cartwheels and taunts after snapping off the bluff. A causal handshake and a nod. Nicely done man, it would be a pleasure to lose chips to you if I ever get the roll to play at the WSOP.

And the attempt at conversation by the old asian guy and Gracz felt like raking fingernails across a chalkboard or an embarrassing part of a movie. Note to ESPN: let the players be themselves, forcing an introvert to chat with someone 1/2 his age is about as entertaining as reading a blog entry by a poker player whining about getting wrong end of the variance stick in tournaments.

Thanks for dropping by, now go here to check out how much you rock at tournament poker at PokerStars. Plug in your favorite blogger/player and let the smack talk begin. Who's the better player me or this guy? Dear god, whatta tourney machine Gigabet is. What's up with him playing the $2 tourneys though? Love for the game?

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