Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Say "what" One More Time I Dare You!


I’m not going to say “what” one more time Mr. Jackson so please refrain from PUTTING SNAKES ON A PLANE!!!! AND THERE'S NOT A GODDAMN THING YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT!!

Iggy posted some great articles and provided his insight to the psychological difficulties that a poker player can go through. Granted most of those articles and statements were geared towards those taking the plunge into professional status and I’m just a humble low stakes grinder.

Grinding out wins. Sigh.

Not a very flashy poker lifestyle is it?

Playing perfect strategy (not ABC poker mind you) over and over like a blackjack card counter to win more often then not isn’t quite as exciting as pros on TV would have you believe. Your aces will get cracked, those two outers pre-flop will hit 1 out of 5 times, and sometimes your spouse will roll over and say “not tonight honey that spicy burrito is giving me gas”. I believe this is the plateau a lot of poker bloggers have been worried about. You know your odds chart, your Harrington/Sklansky/Ray-Zee/Dr. Seuss/Dr. Ruth readings give you an edge on most competition, and you’re capable of making a 18th level move on someone who is quite clearly playing a 7th level game.

Where do we go from here? When is a naked Courtney Friel going to pop out of my closet with a silver tray of $10,000 bricks, the $25,000 buy-in to the Belliago WPT Championship, and the electronic keys to her hotel room? Is Johnny Grooms going to announce my arrival at the final table at the WSOP Omaha 8 or better tourney before they eliminate all of the non-Hold Em’ games? Do I ever want to consider turning pro? Does Neutrogena’s T-Gel really help clear up dandruff?

While considering poker “fantasies” the first question a player should ask him/herself: What is your end goal? What tells you that all of your studying, practicing has finally paid off.

Poker trophies? I have an iPod and a Gateway laptop that I heart.

A lot of people ask “Why am I playing?”, and I believe you should ask yourself “What am I trying to achieve?”. The “why play” question is easy for me to answer, since I LOVE card games and numbers with a geeky passion. I also enjoy the competition, monetary rewards, and interaction that poker provides at the table (less so online, but live play isn’t an everyday viable option). The “what am I trying to achieve” question has me in a rut at the moment. I’m not much of a tournament player so attempting to win satellites to WPT, WSOP type events seems like a waste of money to me.

But playing without a goal in mind is a waste of time for someone like myself.

I read about Doubleas’ trip reports and get the notion of “hey that would rock to win a satellite and a free trip”. Bring the wife and enjoy a resort that our lower-middle income could never afford. Or I could head to Vegas and play in the WSOP, a dream that I’ve had ever since I first started playing emu poker on Pacific almost two years ago. I realize I’m dead money in a tournament setting, but would like to think I’d have a better then average chance of doing well in an O8 tourney if I dedicate myself to studying the game more and plug a few leaks.

"Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do." ~Johann von Goethe

I think I have my goal in mind now and what is needed to achieve it.

1) Scout WSOP satellites
a. Especially if O8 ones are offered (can anyone help me here?)
2) Continue to play cash games and PLO8 turbo SnGs the majority of the time to pad the bankroll
3) Stop being a tard while playing, no more “ah fuck it calls” (this is a recurring leak in my game), have a reason to bet/raise/fold at ALL times
4) Make sure there are minimal distractions while playing, no more trying to play with Little Drizz and counting my outs in three different PLO8 games
5) Reduce the amount of whinny posts/IMs because no one needs to hear that shit (although I don’t mind consoling someone, but I don’t like being the one who sobs about the 2-outer hitting all the time)

Ok, anal retentive goals listed, now its time to get to work… this weekend. The only poker playing I’ll be doing until then is the dime tourneys on Stars. Winning nine cents makes me quiver with glee.

Thanks for dropping by, now if you haven't been following Dr. Pauly's WPT Borgata coverage, dislodge that railroad spike from your head and get over there!

Monday, January 30, 2006

Poker Tip of the Day!


First off, thanks to all the well-wishers from my dark/gloomy/pissed-off-at-the-game post. I’m doing fine, staying away from sharp objects, and I’ll be back next week to take back the money I pissed away playing badly.





More sage poker advice from The Jopke-machine...

“Drinking at the table may help you for awhile; but then you’re screwed!”

- Phil Helmuth


Whazzuah?

Ok, kidding aside about bloggers enjoying a drink or fifteen while check-raising tourist douchebags off their third pair. Does Phil’s “advice” make sense to anyone? At what point do I become “screwed”? Is there a certain BAC in which I should admit myself to the drunk tank and leave the table? Should tolerance come into play?


“Winning leads to more winning”

- Phil Helmuth


I suppose there’s something in this statement. Just look at Dubya getting re-elected, or “Too Drunk to Call” logging in a Place finish after his glorious win at Mandalay Bay despite being a 43-1 shot.

Personally, I felt I won this weekend.

Monetarily, I lost $250 playing poker. But what I gained was far more profitable. I didn’t lose to bad beats and suckouts, I lost due to lack of self-constraint. That is why I was so pissed off this weekend. I can handle the runner-runner straights and the two outers hitting (after the #@%##%@ in chat of course) . What I cannot handle is giving away money by playing my hand “incorrectly”. Correct play doesn’t always mean playing the best cards in the best position. In some cases, it’s correct to play 47o for a raise, think implied odds here for no-limit and pot odds for limit. How hard you play your hand brings in other factors, like your table image, can your opponent lay down an overpair when the flop comes 4 4 8 giving you trips while holding the “garbage” 47o hand. There's a reason why G-Rob manages to log a win or two ;)

My incorrect playing at the PLO8 tables consisted of not listening to the other players talking to me through their bets. I often preach “don’t chase draws to half the pot”, yet I found myself doing so, despite the betting patterns from my opponents shouting in my deaf ear “I’VE GOT HALF THE POT LOCKED UP”. A little Q-tip action would have helped out, but I have a toddler who believes nap time is lets-empty-out-all-my-drawers-and-throw-all-my-clothes-all-over-the-room time which caught my attention. He also selfishly wanted me to play with him. And after losing a $100 pot due to my ignorance and looking into his bright, baby blues… I realized I need to prioritize a lot better. Daddy first, check-raising scooper a distant second.

Me and Wyatt spent the whole day together yesterday while the missus helped her dad with the new bathroom going in downstairs (one of a bazillion “home projects”). I assisted with the project in spirit since me and tools don’t get along. Yes, Wyatt was helping me pick the ponies with BG, Huge Junk, and CJ in the afternoon before his “nap” which consisted of every article of clothing re-carpeting his room. Even after confronting the linen graffiti artist his first words were “big smile Daddy!” while showing off his pearly white teeth in a grin the size of the Alice in Wonderland’s Cheshire Cat.

It’s funny now, but I was not amused at the time.

I promise not to be a stranger this week as I’ll be posting my usual nonsense while beating people sixty cents a time at these Ace Solitaire games I found at Yahoo! Games site called “King” games. You can play for real money, and even though I did not make a deposit there was $5.00 sitting in an “account” for me to use.

Sound familiar?

No, this will not become an Ace Solitaire nor Bejeweled blog, but they are fun distractions for the time being.

Thanks for dropping by, now according to “Stuff” magazine there are 690 Billionaires in the world currently. Actually it said 691, but since I lost $70 playing horses yesterday named after bloggers, instead of staying the course with BG’s awesome handicapping of the races at Tampa Bay Downs, I’m a little short of Platinium card status at the moment.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Going Off Line

The losing is continuing and the fun isn't there.

I'll be in IRC chat, and root people on from the rail. But not playing at the tables for a while, giving away money has been exactly that lately. I don't seem to have the chops to be a poker player and a parent. I get angry at wrong times for no reason, I call off chips when I know I'm behind, the grind has become overwhelming to my psyche.

Perhaps a week without booting up a table will bring back the fun because it just isn't at the moment. My Full Tilt and Stars accounts have dipped to all-time lows and its a feeling of quicksand while playing. The harder I try, the further I sink. Thankfully I do have the restraint of not playing beyond my bankroll and lose so much that I'd be forced to quit altogether.

I know I write one of these types of posts every so often, but not being able to deal with the highs and lows of missed draws and (insert number here) outers is not the way to be playing profitable poker. My competitive ego has taken one shot too many lately and before I do something stupid I'm gonna go play a little hockey with Wyatt.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Marshmellow Peep Sex With Heather Graham


If you had a choice which Spice Girl would you want to impregnate? Posh for me pretty please.

Slim Shady aside how the hell are ya this morning? Me? Fever gone, and my cold has been reduced to a couple of Kleenexes for my runny nose and working without a case of the spins makes for a happy cube monkey. End of the audit season around here means for a little downtime and busy work to be coming my way. The job has taken a turn for the better with the introduction of a couple of cool projects to pull me away from scanning pricing reports and deals all day.

It’s ok to be in a good mood once in a while, right?

Despite my good mood, I hardly played poker last night. Opting to delve into girly chat with the bloggers about Heather Graham sex scenes and why the tools who play Aces for a min raise into seven people need to be beat over the head with a rabid wolverine. I played just enough to get into SilverStar status at PokerStars last night. Not sure when the Thai hookers and the Macallan 25 will be arriving at my doorsteps for reaching this stratospheric amount of play, but I’m hoping it will be soon.

Hell, I’ll settle for a six pack of Pabst, a skin mag, and maybe a box of Triscuits (and none of that sissy “low salt, low sodium” crap Mr. Lee Jones).

Kidding aside there are some cool perks to this VIP deal PokerStars is putting out. $2,500 weekly freerolls, increased multiplier for getting FPPs (towards that Jacket that I want), but a little disappointment that you need to satellite into their $100K Monthly VIP freeroll, I could go for broke trying to rack up 2,500 FPPs this weekend (not happening). Unless I make a permanent move to join the roller-coaster 6-max limit games, I don’t see myself attaining GoldStar status any month soon. Since my most profitable game is full ring PLO8 the game usually moves slowly and if there’s no action players in the game your ratio to played hands vs. VPP point hands is probably 3:1. I don’t have 10 hours a day to get those kind of points.

Last night I dipped a toe into the low limit 6-max O8 game waters. There was some strange post-flop play that allowed me to sneak away with a small profit for the night. I don’t know if I have the stomach for the harsh swings shorthanded play deals out but I’m going to find out today as I’m fixing to play at least 2 or 3 tables for at least 3 hours tonight. Starting hand requirements will have to go down obviously, aggression up, but I saw people will bet for you last night regardless for their cards. I wondered if some players were just racing to see who would cap the betting with nothing but naked lows and overpairs. As Felicia had mentioned in a post… value calling with the nuts on the flop/turn can be very profitable in O8, because overcalls will more then take care of the profit “missed” from raising with them. Low limit O8 players LOVE to chase that naked A2 low and some will even call down several raises to hit it.

The nut low is sexy isn’t it? All dolled up in a high cut cheerleader’s outfit, ruffled skirt showing her miles of leg with a tease of Victoria Secret on every step. The school name stretched across her over-developed chest bobs in front of you within reach. You know you’re going to finally use that four year old condom in your wallet if you can just “get there”. But when you get to her house with nothing but your nut low and stale Trojan, her quarterback boyfriend that drives a Porsche 911 is waiting with his Magnums and a high hand to take 3/4th of the pot leaving you to spank it quietly in the corner to scrambled porn again.

Getting quartered isn’t the end of the world as scrambled porn can be mildly amusing, but what if the low doesn’t get there and you get scooped? You just chased half the pot with no expectation of winning the whole thing. That’s like attending your first major league ballgame in a restricted view seat or betting the insurance wager in blackjack. The only way you’re going to win money is if your opponent concedes the hand and folds, and in low limit O8 don’t count on that happening.








ALWAYS BE DRAWING!

Thanks for dropping by, now go forth and win many monies for the good guys, see you at the tables tonight.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Concentration Is Not Just for Orange Juice



I don’t know what kind of karma points I got for watching Wife Swap with my wife and staying awake, but I think I cashed in the entire amount last night. The IRC girly chat box was fired up last night and some well meaning people (i.e. money-whoring poker bloggers) as they saw my dead money name and coaxed me into signing up for the always fun Wil Wheaton dot Net (in exile) weekly tournament. I like to give away money, as seen by my second hand departure last week when my hammer bluff fell about 99 yards short of the goal line. I figured to play for the first hour, bust out due to a mixed cocktail of bad play/suckout, and make sexual remarks about my favorite female body parts in the chat box, then go back to my usual $1/$2 PLO8 game until it was time to sleep.

Then I made it past the break.

Then QQ held up versus AJ.

Then I got Aces versus Kings and they held up.

Ruh-roh Drizz has chips, lots of em, we’re talking Doritos factory mountain size stack. 73o? Excellent hand for a 1384 chip raise! If you want to figure out my system for size of raises… you’ll have to guess, because if I raise T1111, I’ll have Aces or 83o, your choice. Choose wisely as the Knight from the Crusades said to Indy, for one will grant you eternal tournament life, the other may take it from you.

While I enjoyed a sizable chip lead, a PLO8 tourney that I try to play every day was starting up on Full Tilt (click on the banner above!!) with 107 runners and me who left his cross trainers and spandex pants in the closet.

My first and only suckout occurred as I pushed an isolation raise from a short stack’s all-in with QQ, the other big stack in the tourney called the all-in plus my raise and we checked it down only to reveal his AQ pairing his Ace on the river. As someone pointed out last night, the side pot was NOT dry and contained a sizable amount of chips and I should have bet. With a King high flop, and both stacks leading the tourney with 16 left, do you bet here hoping to push your opponent off his hand or check it down and accept the fate of the river card? Chalk it up to my lack of tourney experience there.

Hmmmmmm… I doubled up, then tripled up in the PLO8 tourney, this could be good.

Good steals, bad steals and I made the final table to win some WHEATON BUCKS WHOO WHOO! (I believe PokerNerd coined this one). Quickly I get KK, flop a set, get middle pair to call and river quads.

Yeah, this game is easy.

Then QQ wins a race (yes I won another race, please contact PokerStars there’s a glitch in their system) vs. AKs. Again, this game is easy.

But, I spewed chips away with bad aggression. And while still solvent and three handed, I pushed with top pair-kicker so small you needed a chromosome viewing powered telescope to see it, which was correctly called by two pair and Drizz was on life-support with T224. Then I doubled through FOUR TIMES, until the party crashed down when the eventual winner hit top pair and my ace high was no gOOt. Thanks for all the rail well-wishers, I hoped to notch my first MTT win in a year, but it wasn’t meant to be.

Out in 3rd place.



Aren’t you still playing PLO8?

Holy shit, I’m in the money again! After going the entire month without a MTT cash (the dime tourney does not count) I found myself vying for two final tables in the same night. A night that I really needed sleep as the Nyquil I took at 9:30 was keeping me a step above comatose. Although I was the short stack almost the entire time at the final table, I managed to place fourth for a 10X buy-in win. The cards were not there, but bad play was.

And for once it wasn’t my bad play, as I closed down all other games to concentrate on this one. The gignormous chip leader lost all of his chips in a matter of 5 hands for not recognizing the cardinal rule of PLO8… aggression pre-flop does not work 100% of the time because it is correct to call with almost any four cards. He raised every flop for five hands straight with very poor cards and got called by potential scooping hands 4 out of 5 five times, and lost post flop because he wouldn’t let go when he was drawing to half the pot. Post flop play was the only reason I remained the tournament so long, because I took two flops while nine handed and could have considered myself “pot committed” after calling but folded when I didn’t connect at all with a “premium starting hand”.

Yes, it’s good to sweeten a pot pre-flop with a starting hand that is better then average (especially short-handed), but being able to get away from it once the flop comes down is the key to O8. People get married to AAXX way too much, yes it’s a fair starting hand HU, but you’re not an automatic 80% pre-flop favorite like you are in Hold Em’, sometimes you can be reduced to no more then a 60-65% favorite over a hand that is connected (straights and flush possibilities) and able to scoop the low and high.

I wish I could spell out my PLO8 strategies like a Hank or JoeSpeaker but I’ve always been that annoying kid who solves problems in his head and doesn’t know how he got there. Maybe if my writing improves, I’ll try to share a little more of what I’ve learned while giving away monies at the PLO8 tables.

Thanks for dropping by, now here’s Phil Hellmuth’s tips for the past two days (combined for your displeasure).

Phil H. “A great call makes your opponents afraid to try to bluff you and it lets you know you’re “In the Zone””

Drizz: I curse Rini every day for giving me this calendar.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Too (Sick) To Call

If you can’t win at cards, might as well bet on the ponies.

After spending the majority of the weekend wrapped up tight with my good friends Nyquil and Sudafed. I’m back at work today hoping that no one approaches me with any questions that require a two syllable answer. Ever felt that way at work, just wanting to sit down at your desk with the cute pictures of your loved ones staring at you and putting a hex on anyone who even breathes towards your cube?

Normally, I love answering questions due to my rather solemn job description that has me buried beneath mountains of ledgers and receipts. Unfortunately block print doesn’t contain cool pictures and jokes. Being from a customer service background, I’d rather be helping people then sorting out debits and credits.

Not today.

Today is “let Drizz work or I’ll puke like that pie eating contest scene from Stand by Me”. (Hi Wil!!) I used to pride myself on working regardless of how I felt, but I now I realize what’s the point of dragging on an illness for a few bucks? Not to mention becoming that annoying guy in the other cube who coughs and sneezes till want to jump over the cube wall and encase him in saran wrap.

Enough about being sick since just about everyone has had to deal with this damn flu/cold/evian bird epidemic/plague/hangnail/compound fracture illness and I should stop whining.

Steelers vs. Seachickens? I should have had Little Drizz pick the winners again, or picked the teams who showed the most heart. No refs bungling up calls, no whiny perennial All-Pro quarterbacks getting more face time then they deserved. Just flat out domination on both sides of the ball for two well deserved teams. Anyone betting on Kobe vs. the final score of the Super Bowl? If you haven’t heard about his 81 point game, Sportcenter seems to be jacking themselves off over it with way too many recurring stats/highlights/cue-ins even three days later. Phenomenal performance yes, but why burn out a good thing by over using it?

Kind of like the mountain of poker shows out there.

High Stakes Poker may be the only exception to this rule. Since I’m a self-proclaimed “cash game player”, ok I suck at tournaments so I’m forced to play cash games, is that better? I think people can get more out of seeing “true” poker being played for real dollars instead of fake chips that represent the amount of money you’ll receive for placing within a tournament structure. I have nothing against tournaments or the players who excel at them, but there’s an added danger to playing cash games versus the set amount of a freezeout tournament. The psychological difference between bluffing at a pot with tournament chips versus real cash (which you shouldn’t be thinking of your checks as cash in the first place, that’s a post for a different time…).

One unique difference between cash and tournament play is betting on draws and when its “correct” to do so. While stack size does come into play in both games, in tournament play it is actually correct to call a short stack’s “All-in” pre-flop with minimal holdings in hopes of sucking out to eliminate an opponent. Calling all-ins pre-flop with minimal holdings in a cash game is a more refined way of playing video poker.

Sure, today you might catch the nut straight with 64o and crack that table coach’s KK (actually that’s going for the reversed implied tilt odds which can net you money in the future, but that’s a play for the true loose-aggressives out there who are only establishing a table image…). When I’m not playing I like to open up tournaments and watch them, trying to figure out the DaVinci code behind the successful tournament player. “Get lucky” seems to be the cop-out theme that non-winners whine about. I believe there’s a saying “luck favors the prepared mind” or something like that. And with that in mind, there’s a reason why players like CJ, JoeSpeaker, and Otis do well consistently in tournaments, and I do not. It’s not because a leprechaun is stuck up their posteriors, or they made a pact in blood to never appear on American Idol. It’s because they have a game plan that works, granted it might only work 15%-20% of the tournaments they enter, but when a final table cashing pays for the 80% of the misses plus more, its VERY profitable poker. Make sure you’re reading the morsels they drop about being a profitable tournament player; it just might help you get over your bubble finish when your AA got cracked by A5 sOOOOOOOted.

Thanks for dropping by now on a belated note please go give Ryan at Absinthesparks some props for winning a NLHE event at the LA Poker Classic. You sir are the man and will be buying the lap dances at the next WPBT event!!

Saturday, January 21, 2006

HORSEplay


Maybe this guy should have stood in for me last night.

Muy thanks to April for putting together the WPBT H.O.R.S.E. tourney last night, I had a blast for about two seconds! Kinda like sex!

I apologize for the mindless tilt-dump yesterday as I'm still learning the art of taking variance with a grain of salt.



I have gone back home to the PLO8 cash game tables and they've greeted me with open arms thus far. I do hope to return to the limit O8 tables in the future, but for now its time to make money again.

Just bubbled in a PLO8 SnG from runner runner. Guess the bright days will be starting tomorrow.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Time Out

After blowing $200 on tourneys last night without even a hint of cashing, and a $300 one-outer hitting today for the visiting team, I'm going to lay low and go back to PLO8 ring games till the tilt goes by.

Right now, poker doesn't like me much, and I can't say that I have the patience to continue this "variance" string.

What's the overused phrase? "Taking a shot and missing"? Hell, I don't even feel like I got out of the dugout. I was hoping to take away a learning experience, but I neither learned nor got any knowledge from the relentless junk kicking.

Hope I'm in a better mood later this weekend so I can bring back a little sunshine because right now I feel like shit.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

It's Crunch Time

The audit season here at work is coming to a close so all busy work for the biannual audit must be done by the end of next week. This is probably the reason why I’ve been literally passing out on the couch for the past week without the help of alcoholic beverages. Either that or I’m still battling this flu bug with no end in sight. Maybe its withdrawal and I need a quick trip to Vegas to refuel?


“Honey, I’m going to Vegas this weekend to get smashed for 48 hours straight, gamble away my poker bankroll and hit on that cocktail waitress with the watermelon size tits while you take care of Wyatt’s pee soaked Bob the Builder underoos and freeze your ass off”

Sounds cordial enough.

With the trip to South Carolina this summer, Vegas will have to be put on hold unless I go on some amazing rush between now and then at the tables and can afford both trips. Maybe the players at Full Tilt and PokerStars will be kind enough to fund both a trip to see my relatives and a trip to see my friends. Winning a new iMac courtesy of Full Tilt (remember bonus code Drizz99) would go a long way towards the funding.

I think my best chances of funding both trips will be at the $3/$6 and $5/10 tables nailing scoops versus the hold em’ players who mis-clicked into an O8 game. I’m sure they feel the same way when I take a night to play hold em’ and generally give away a buy-in while drawing to a nut low. That, or one night I could channel CJ and miraculously hit it big in a tournament with a buy in of more then 10 cents. The big weekend H.O.R.S.E. tourney at Full Tilt is getting my attention as a place to take my shot. I would not feel intimidated by the competition like I would in a NLHE tourney. But, the buy-in amount would be the biggest mental barrier as I’ve never entered a tourney online for more then a $50 buy-in (Thanks to CJ on that one), and that was only once. I’m a big pussy when it comes to bigger buy-in tourneys despite having the bankroll to enter comfortably into the $30-$50 range tourneys.

Why the mental block?

It’s not so much a mental block, but an expectation block. When I sit down at an O8 table I expect to win. When I sit down at a PLO8 SnG, I expect to cash/win (this is the only tourney exception because they truly are the worst players on the planet). When I play a MTT tourney I expect to lose, not necessarily to a suckout/beat/emu, but to lack of control. In a cash game, you control how much you bring to the table, how much you are comfortable with winning/losing, and how long you are going to play. In a tourney you lose that control as blinds are raised with the inability to reload your chips voluntarily (not counting the idiot with a pair of fours pushing all-in on your nut flush).

Is it worth it for me to “take a shot”?

Since I’m an auditor by trade, it’s my job to scan the books for things that don’t look right, and ways that the company can save money. I believe this has an effect on me “taking a shot” at higher buy-in tourneys. The WSOP is an exception since that’s more of a dream-shot, and crossing off something I have always wanted to do in my life. Not part of the daily grind of playing profitable poker to improve ones bankroll.

Tonight however I will be making an exception to the grind because frankly I’ve been in a rut during this month and need to divert my “woe-is-me” attitude. I will be setting aside $200-$250 tonight to play in MTT tourneys with a buy-in over $20 (unless there’s a mixed game tourney with a buy-in of $10) and “take a shot” relatively speaking. My expectation from these tourneys is exactly zero, I fully expect to lose the entire amount (as I did when I did my tourney challenge last month), but hope to take away a learning experience. So, if anyone has suggestions on what tourneys to check out tonight, I’m all ears.

Ok, enough with the me me me me me me me me today.

Thanks for dropping by, now if you have any burning life questions you’d like answered with a simple “Yes” or “No”, Wyatt will be guest posting tomorrow with his sage advice, at least till his nap time.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

King of Vegas

Hokey or good fun?

Definitely an interesting concept as most of us are gamblers beyond the scope of big slick, doorcards, and open-ended straight flush draws. Last night this newest gambling series started off on Spike TV with Mike “The Mouth” being Mike “The Mouth” on the very first hand of the blackjack portion of the contest. I’m still fuzzy on the exact rules and stuff but it seemed you needed to place high enough within a game (Blackjack, Caribbean Stud, Roulette) to advance to the next show. For the six players that did not “qualify” were subjected to a six-man Texas Hold Em’ match at the end of the show to determine a loser who would be ejected Survivor style, without the torches, eating various insects, gay men running around naked, or immunity challenges that involve drinking your own pee.

The poker portion was a little confusing as Matusow hit a big hand with AK vs AQ then suddenly wasn’t at the table to be eliminated. Maybe a more acute viewer could clue me in. A question about this choice of the “sudden death” game if it is Texas Hold Em’, this will severely favor the three poker pros (David Williams, Evy Ng and Matusow) or at least embarrass them should they lose. Of course just like on Survivor, one of the hottest chicks got eliminated first last night. Rigged.

Now, I enjoy watching gambling. In fact while in Vegas if you didn’t see me sitting at a bank of bonus penny slots or giving away money at the Excalibur poker room, I was watching the table games and craps tables. I do enjoy throwing a wager on cards or dice, but most of the time; I would rather be a spectator to the excitement of the unknown. The cast of characters seemed genuine while winning/losing their bets. The neon dressed Al Capone “Chainsaw” guy certainly got into the competition when hitting his 35-1 shot on the Roulette table, busting out a dance Young M.C. would be proud of.

Overall, the show is a little heavy on the cheese but doesn’t appear scripted to the point that it chokes the personality of colorful people like Matusow. Evy… more victory dances and definitely more smiles, you’re not re-raising some fish with second pair in a WPT event.

Little Drizz gives it two trains up, at least for the first week.

While I was watching the show I managed a little poker (AS SEEN BY THE SUPER-COLLOSUS CASH SHOWN BELOW). Final tabling in a dime tourney felt like winning a bonus round on a penny slot with one credit wagered after playing max credits for two hours straight (see Grubby if you don’t get understand how much that would suck). I won a coin flip, KK and QQ held up, I think somewhere a Democrat and Republican agreed on taxes and homeland security. All at the wrong fuckin time. Why couldn’t this happen in a “real” tourney? Its not about the monies, right?

Sigh.

Maybe it’s a sign to move up to the quarter tourneys now? God, I’m such a pussy sometimes.

I did enjoy a little side game action with Alan and Falstaff as I managed to piss off a table coach and chip leader at a .05/.10 table and book a win big enough to pay for a Turbo PLO8 SnG! If I ever get the balls to play more loose-aggressive at higher levels, I may return to the NLHE tables for a spell.

Thanks for dropping by, now go congratulate BadBlood on a fine tourney win in the weekly Wil Wheaton dot Net tourney. His cash is being withheld at this time due to physical threats being made by the thrash-metal lover at the final table, about how suckouts would be dealt with in the parking lot after the tourney. Shooter McGavin and Mr. Larson were not available for comment.

Damn I Rock At This Game!!






Heavy on the sarcasm.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Ineptitude


You see it everyday on TV, at work, on the road, at a restaurant, at the $2/$4 table when someone cracks your KK with 73s hitting a boat on the river (I would NEVER do that). You have experienced it while taking a test, trying to undo a bra for the first time, trying to keep up with Al at a bar, or having an argument with a toddler who doesn’t want to eat his/her dinner.

People show ineptitude in many ways, for example: a soccer mom may seem competent in multi-tasking while getting little Billy and Darla to all their college resume enhancing activities on time, making sure the lamb chops at home are kept to the perfect temperature, while juggling three pending court cases in her thriving home legal practice. This may sound like someone who’s got it all together, but not from the view point of that trucker she cut off on I-90 while yelling at some poor civil servant over her phone (with Bluetooth technology of course) getting a restraining order for one of her clients. Or the portly gentlemen who had to cover up his “anticipation” with his brand-spanking new issue of Juggs patently behind her at the supermarket express lane while she brought a week’s worth of groceries into the 10 items or less lane.

I bet the NFL refs this weekend thought they were doing the right thing and nearly caused the city of Pittsburgh to wreak havoc on the United States. How many TV’s do you think were destroyed by Steeler fans after the phantom interception got overturned during the game on Sunday? A while later, Terrible Towel nooses were probably being created after The Bus fumbled. For some reason the fumble struck a funny chord in me that I haven’t felt since seeing GRob kneeling in defeat of the brutal Excalibur poker room wheel and lost prop bet #274. But thanks to a sober Vanderjagt kicking the ball somewhere between Yemen and Qatar, Big Ben broke Little Drizz’s streak of correct NFL picks and Mean Gene can hop down to Best Buy and purchase a new Plasma screen for this week’s AFC Championship game.

Why didn’t I consult with Little Drizz about football wagering earlier? Three for four? Hell, I get giddy about picking one right.

None will improve your lot If you yourself do not.

- Bertolt Brecht


More ineptitude could be found at the virtual tables with a cute kid pic or sultry cartoon nurse and a name of Drizztdj underneath them. He managed to check-raise the wrong douche-bags at the wrong time, exhibited some flair with his patented bluff-call knowing he was beat, and my favorite… raising all-in into quads while holding an underpair to the board, far along into a MTT. As the Guinness commercial cardboard cut-outs would exclaim, BRILLANT!

I did manage to cash in an H.O.R.S.E. MTT at Full Tilt while changing the mother of all diaper loads. Little Drizz decided to explode with a dump worthy of a professional food eating contestant right near the bubble of the tourney, but I managed to nail a 6 in Razz to give me enough chips to overcome the card death for the next 45 minutes and squeak into the money. I know I shouldn’t have “been a pussy” but with truly unplayable cards in a limit tourney and zero fold equity, I was at the mercy of catching a few cards.

My foray into limit Omaha 8 or better has not produced results yet, as I continue to struggle with variance and some holes I’d like to plug. I am pleased that the usage of more aggressiveness while folded to in late position is paying off. This does not work at levels $2/$4 and below where 5-7 callers is the norm, but if I’m on the button or one off in a $3/$6 or $5/$10 game, I will usually come in for a raise with any suited ace + any wheel card, and follow up with a continuation bet of some sort to take it down.

Even though its limit, stack size and the blind’s playing ability do come into the equation of whether or not to come in for a raise. Raising into a short stack with 2-3BBs left will probably call you down with any four hoping to double up before having to reload or go do the laundry. I made this mistake a couple of times and due to icantfolditsis, had to pay off the small stack with minimal holdings.

Thanks for dropping by, now here’s an article from across the pond about the dangers of unhealthy eating. Don’t be looking at the Page 3 pictures you perverts… ok I took a peek too.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Drizz The Greek NFL Playoffs Week 2

Guest posting seems to be the norm these days so I thought I'd invite Wyatt to make the football picks this weekend since I'm on tilt from assorted retardedness last night....

















Confused about the selection process, he decided to seek assistance from one of his trains. Then drew four teams from a hat.

















Wyatt openly mocks Mean Gene, causing an audible sigh from the entire city of Pittsburgh. Terrible Towels are immediately found on EBay for bulk discounts.


















Wyatt's selections. Thanks to the Book of Sims for the theme of today's post.

Thanks for dropping by, now who's ready for some football!!!!

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Mice on a Plane

I brought Snakes on a Plane for the DADI: Omalymics PLO8 tourney last night and ended up as one of the mice. Excellent turn out by the bloggers once again, and even a crabby mixed game specialist managed to show that she has the chops to make it through this mine field and make a final table appearance. I ended up somewhere around 26th place after finally nailing a wheel only to have someone turnover a wheel plus a six-high straight.

SNAKES ON A PLANE ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRGGH!!!!!

I was finished off a little later as someone’s aces held up and neither a low, nor flOOsh came for my A3s49. A little while later I watched the chip leader take the worst hand in four times in a row at the final table and manage to channel CJ in picking off everyone in consecutive hands with mild suckouts. O8 is definitely a game where that strategy can be correct, since pre-flop only in extreme circumstances are you a significant underdog. With a massive chip lead it is correct to plow people over by just pushing them all-in every hand with hope of winning those coin flips.

Congratulations to all the winners.

Not feeling like playing is about as close to depression as I get nowadays. I was staring at the Full Tilt tournament tab while Mrs. Mortenson bounced in the stands as her husband took down Kido Pham in the Doyle Brunson WPT tourney, and Andy Bloch’s name in red was contrasting the various other participants in a $20 PLO8 MTT that was starting in a few minutes. Normally I would say “fuck sleep I’m winning a t-shirt tonight!”. Last year I would have signed up without even thinking about the potential time and energy investment. But, I have taken a new approach to poker this year, and one of those changes is entering tournaments on a whim. Before I click the radio button to pay for an entry fee, I go through a mental checklist of how much time I will be investing into this tourney and whether or not I have enough energy to play good poker for 3-4 hours during a MTT. I wussed out on entering the tourney, made the appropriate session notes in my notebook, and logged off with hopes of feeling refreshed for a full night of poker tonight.

It was a good plan until the neighbor’s dog woke up the dear and patient wife and she in turn decided I should be informed of this late night auditory aberration while I was dreaming of Lindsay Lohan in a Hooter’s uniform pushing a Fort Knox size pot my way while getting a full view of her…

What hon? Oh, sorry, I thought I was grabbing my pillow. Do you need a back rub?

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With mixed feelings I was informed I will be going on a week long vacation this summer in South Carolina!

The good news. Private beach house, cool relatives, plenty of golf, plenty of poker, and relaxation.

The bad news. This is my wife’s underhanded way of telling me I will not be going to Vegas for the WSOP. Although she hasn’t said anything directly to that point, I believe it’s the end of making it to Vegas this summer. It’s kind of like the subtle cold shoulder you get from a spouse when you were all ready to rock her world for 10 seconds, and all you get is a Charlie Brown kiss on the forehead, leaving you to deal with blue balls and internet porn for the balance of the evening. Also, it appears that we’re going to be too far away for me to catch the South Cacklacky crew in their natural habitat. Sigh.

Bradoween and/or The Bash at the Boathouse are still open for discussion in the household since making Erik Seidel my butler in the WSOP O8 tourney isn’t likely to happen this year.

Thanks for dropping by, now for Phil’s Poker Tip of the Day!

Phil: “You flop TRIPS with a pocket pair roughly one out of seven flops”

Drizz: “I know its tomah-to tomay-to, but isn’t that called a set?” But who am I to tell a NINE-TIME WSOP BRACELET WINNER, about poker jargon.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Socializing



My life can seem automated at times. Get up, work, go home, eat dinner, play with Little Drizz, kiss wife good night, make ass of myself online, and lose money playing poker. I enjoy my “schedule” and cherish my time I get with my family and also my friends online. Even those who have never heard of cheese curds before.

But last night I was given the green light to hit up a bar poker tournament despite feeling like ass. After downing some orange juice and some Halls (cherry flavored) cough drops I set out with my friend Burnsie to meet another friend and play some inspired donkey poker! We arrived at JCousineau’s around seven to see the poker action of 50 grizzled veterans of the Free Poker League…

… in the 3rd level of the tourney.

Thanks to our other friend J, who stated the tourney started at 7:30 (and wasn’t even at the bar), we didn’t get the chance to bust a ZZ Top look-a-like that seemed to stand up and dance around every hand he was involved with. So much for check-raising pseudo celebs off their 3rd pair.

Dejected but not defeated we hurried over to Alleygators for their Tuesday tourney. Once again players were already busting because it started 30 minutes prior to our arrival. I was even more heart-broken at the missed opportunity, for the chance to play against a pro was lost.

List the things that spell WPT-fanboi at a live table, then multiply them by 10 and you’d get this future $25NLHE PartyPoker dominator:

Mirrored Shades: Check
Ball cap listing in sharpie pen the dates of his recent “cashes” at the bar: Check
Oversized Bose headphones: Check
Free swag from an online site (actually I like swag…): Check
Huge card capper(s) (he had 4 of them, maybe he though Omaha was gonna get dealt?): Check
A scarf masking his mouth (no, he was not sick): Check
Rock-like stillness (even between hands): Check
Two minute staredowns even while folding 93o in early position: Check

What would cause someone to don I wardrobe worthy of a WSOP event?

Playing for WPT event package? WSOP buy in? Autographed picture of Otis falling at a Pai Gow table?

Nope… a bar tab, a t-shirt, and I think $50 cash (might have been more).

Which blogger do you think could crack the 1337dOOd’s fa├žade first by setting him on tilt? Al? Bobby Bracelet? Iggy? Maigrey? Hell, I would have put up a prop bet before the first hand for the first person to make him crack.

Two bar poker tourneys going on two miles from each other mid-week, and both were packed with the maximum allowed players. I don’t see the “decline” for this “fad” as the doomsayers in the news have been spewing out. Plateau it may be, but decline? Read Otis’ Pokerstars Blog to see the results of the recent PokerStars Carib. Adventure tourney and its attendance numbers and talk about decline then.

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Our heroes were denied the fun company of bar poker so we hit up Mama G’s for a little Golden Tee and a light drinking night since I’m an amateur (or weekend drinker according to Al’s guide to bar patrons) and still feeling like shit. J finally shows up and doesn’t apologize for the bad poker information so we huddle around the Golden Tee machine and bullshit for a couple of hours.

At the end of the night, J said something that got me a little on tilt. “Why don’t you socialize more?” A little back story, J is over 30, he’s been out of work for several years since a car accident and lives at home still. He is not handicapped but has had addiction problems with painkillers and a back problem which can make him appear drunk at times. For years we have been trying to kick him in the ass to try to better his life by becoming more independent and stop glooming over shitty luck with a car accident.

Self-pity can be a bitch, I know from personal experience. You can’t do the things you used to, you can’t be the person you used to be, blah blah blah. After awhile you need to look in the mirror and say “I need to do something, my life is going no place”.

I did.

I went off on him about having two mortgage payments, going to work in six hours, and other responsibilities while he bitches about having to do the dishes after his mom makes dinner at night (maybe I was a little too self-rightous here). Maybe I should have been tougher, louder, because some people need to get knocked on their ass by their friends before they can get up on their own. Poker (along with blogger friends) was a portion of finding life fun again, but my dear and patient wife along with my friend Burnsie made sure I didn’t waste away into a Dark Age of Camelot playing hermit by making sure I was never without a smile and left self-pity at the door when we’d go out.

It’s fun to socialize, but its better to know your priorities, whatever those priorities may be.

Thanks for dropping by, now my priorities tonight are kicking Jordan’s ass at the DADI: Omalympics PLO8 tourney (PokerStars 8pm CST: password blogsaregay). Be there and tremble in fear of my weak-tight play.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

I'm No Iron Man


96 hours in Vegas. 4.5 hours of sleep. Gallons of Captain Morgan consumed.

Yet I couldn’t make it past the beginning of “What’s Hot in Vegas 2006” on TLC at 7pm. Man, I feel like a whiny professional athlete who put himself on the IR for a hangnail. I remember making dinner (Pork Chops and Taters) for the lovely wife and Little Drizz. Then, I crashed on the couch with anticipation of firing up the new Gateway and logging in another night towards the Iron Man contest on Full Tilt as soon as they both retired for the night. But, true to wuss-like form, I woke up to Ken Barlow on the 10pm news telling us about the mild winter that continues today and quickly diving into my bed. In Minnesota, mild winter temperatures being in the teens rather then the usual snozz busting 20 below.

Can I still blame these flu symptoms on Monkey Patient Zero?

I await the the 103 degree temps, inability to move, cold sweats, constant smokers cough mixed with a barrel of lungbutter. Instead I get the slow burn of headache, fatigue, and leaky nose faucet. More annoying then painful, kind of like listening to Mr. Britney Spears’ new single while receiving a dual VIP lap dance at Scores.

Tomorrow night is the DADI: PLO8 tourney at Stars (8 o’clock CST, password: blogsaregay). Anyone have a PLO8 primer I can borrow?

Here’s primer everyone should be reading, you can’t go wrong with JoeSpeaker’s advice on Pauly’s site.

Simply fan-tab-u-los-sus!

What Tom Emanski does for youth baseball, John Basedow does for home fitness, JoeSpeaker does for teaching the ins-and-outs of low buy in Multi Table Tourneys. GOLD BABY GOLD! And he does it while not mentioning his back-to-back-to-back AAU championships or making the Crime Dog look like a dufus in a $.49 trucker’s cap. The post contains flair without the cockiness that this MTT crusher could show. Titled “JoeSpeaker’s Low Buy-In Online Tournament Manifesto Version 1.0”, the post takes you through the important parts of any large low-buy in freezeout MTT.

Personally being an unsuccessful tournament player, my greatest weakness (besides losing coin flips with NASA-like accuracy) is his tip #3 subtitled “Hour Two”

3. Don't Be a Pussy. By the end of the second hour, you are likely within sight of the bubble. Don't take the tack that cashing is your first priority. Going deep is your first priority. You are not going to get a solid return on investment from multi-table tournaments if you settle for minor awards. The big money is at the Final Table and a couple trips there can pay for months of bubble finishes. Yes, it can be frustrating to bubble, especially if you have a stack that was comfortably positioned near par. But that stack is going to get eaten up quickly while players accumulate around you. While protecting it may get you a small profit, you'll be at a disadvantage once you are in the money, as the large stacks will happily call your all-ins with garbage and suck out.

I tend to look at “cashing” too much since it doesn’t happen very often for this self-proclaimed Sleprock of tournaments. Woe-is-me. Granted I don’t tighten up to the point where I only play AA, KK, AK nor do I give up many prime blind stealing chances, but I do play like a pussy sometimes when I shouldn’t. An excellent example of this happened in a SnG over the weekend.
With four players left (three make the money) I was left with T52 while in the BB after posting, a fellow shortstack with only T48 more in chips goes all-in UTG and gets called by the two large stacks. What’s your play here (cards are inconsequential)? Fold, and there’s a 2/3 chance of the shortstack getting bounced and taking home 3rd place. Call and there’s a ¾ chance of losing $XX.XX for 3rd place. Can I cop out and say the play was +EV? Probably not. Sadly, the fold button was too enticing as I committed the cardinal sin of poker.

I looked at the money instead of the win.

Plays like that hurt a player more then losing a bucket full of coin flips and bad beats. It’s a reminder that YOU control the action pre-flop, not the cards. So, take the metrosexual’s advice and “Don’t Be a Pussy”, your bankroll and sanity will thank you.

Thanks for dropping by, now here’s an article on how bad web applications can cause bad publicity. Take note PartyPoker.

WASHINGTON POST
1/8/06
Wal-Mart Sees How Fast Bad Press Spreads Online
By Frank Ahrens
Sunday, January 8, 2006; F07
Used to be, when you were angry with a corporation or a government or even a person, you had to stand outside the building and hold a sign, or at least yell a lot.

Your distribution -- and potential impact -- was limited to the range of your voice or the size of the letters on your sign. If you hoped for a wider audience, you had to hector the local television news to show up. If you got really lucky, its feed was picked up by the networks, and you'd get 30 seconds at the end of the evening news.

But now, you can go from zero to global in a matter of minutes, as Wal-Mart painfully found out last week.

Early Thursday afternoon, some bloggers discovered a horrifying sight: Wal-Mart's retail Web site was telling potential buyers of "Planet of the Apes" DVDs that they might also like to buy DVDs featuring the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., black boxing legend Jack Johnson and black actress Dorothy Dandridge. In another nasty linkage, those titles were also recommended to buyers of a "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" DVD.

Zowie.

Perceived racism is like anthrax to a company: potentially deadly and hard to clean off. The graveness of the situation was reflected in Wal-Mart's quick public apology, in which it said it was "heartsick" over the incident.

As of late Friday, the Bentonville, Ark., retail giant insisted its site was not hacked. Instead it called the unfortunate product linkage a problem involving its "mapping" technology. On a retail site, mapping takes product titles -- books, CDs, DVDs, etc. -- and thematically links them to other products. It has turned out to be a powerful consumer theory, made popular by Amazon.com, based on the assumption that consumers will buy other stuff if it's similar to the stuff they just bought.

The first time I noticed this practice was nearly a decade ago on one of the early versions of http://www.allmusic.com/ . I'd look up a signer, say, Joe Jackson, and the site listed "similar artists," such as Elvis Costello and Graham Parker. I thought, "How'd they know I liked those guys, too?" Turns out, like most of us, I'm pretty predictable. Only rabidly self-conscious and eclectic hipsters can outsmart The Map. Wal-Mart's mapping technology is based on the same cross-referenced affinity-link assumptions as Allmusic's.

But as mega-corps such as Wal-Mart, Amazon and Target profit from the Web, they are discovering it has drawbacks, as well. Indeed, Wal-Mart, the world's biggest retailer, has found a bull's-eye on its back bigger than Target's.

Anti-Wal-Mart sites, such as http://www.againstthewal.com/ and http://www.walmartwatch.com/ , blast the company for what they consider poor practices and all manner of evils, from driving local retailers out of business to paying its employees low wages.

As happened with the supposed Air National Guard service records of President Bush and countless lesser stories, the Web -- bloggers, alt-news sites and so forth -- can now drive mainstream news coverage. Folks who never read a blog but read papers and watch the news now know that significant anti-Wal-Mart sentiment exists.

Thursday was a bad day for critical thought. It was amazing, frankly, how quickly some bloggers were ready to believe that Wal-Mart linked its "Planet of the Apes" DVDs to black-themed DVD titles on purpose. Aside from kiddie porn and e-mail scams, this is perhaps the most troubling trait of the Internet: Rather than opening minds, it can close them, thanks to echo-chamber Web sites and blogs.

Which, coincidentally, works on the same premise as retail-site mapping. We like to read Web sites and blogs that we agree with and that reinforce our opinions. Aside from the few of you who practice "know your enemy" browsing, how many of you liberals read http://www.nationalreview.com/ ? How many of you conservatives frequent http://www.thenation.com/ ?

People who hate Wal-Mart are going to flock to anti-Wal-Mart sites and blogs. And they did in droves on Thursday, writing sentiments along the lines of, "Well, what do you expect from a company that has non-progressive labor rules?" In other words: "Well, of course Wal-Mart is racist. Look at how they engage in various practices we don't agree with."

Kind of makes me nostalgic for the old days, when the only damage a kook with a sign and a bullhorn could do was annoy people on the sidewalk.

© 2006 The Washington Post Company

Monday, January 09, 2006

DADI: Domination To Follow

My selected team vs. Jordan's Team:

Drizz, TraumaPoker, and Daddy.

Hope you guys all make the final table.

Dog Eat Dog


I think the only reason anyone watched that show on NBC years ago was to catch a glimpse of Brooke Burns (photo by Stuff Magazine) or some hot nubile contestant who was usually as bright as your basic Vegas porn slapper. Strip Quarterback? Yes, ma’am please trade that bra for another chance to throw a nerf ball through the circle, no I’m not looking. Did you know that Las Vegas is the capital of Nevada? Neither did I until I watched the show.

Plenty of pokery things done this weekend as my play chip balance on Full Tilt went down, and PokerStars went up. Full Tilt is currently offering a $50K freeroll to those people who earn 50 “Full Tilt points” each day for 28 consecutive days. I am on day 4, and plan to ride it out despite some, um, server problems last night. Maybe it was for the better as the limit O8 games have been kicking my ass sideways. Second best hands and the “its only $X.XX to call” syndrome of limit poker has me bleeding away bets that I would be saving. I believe Caro said: “Bets saved are bets earned”, or something to that nature. And he’s completely right, for every bet you don’t waste, you are earning money as this is what separates the average and good players. Average players break-even because the cards eventually break-even, good players “save” those wasted dollars and invest them more wisely, like on super-duper draws that send the table coach into a tilting frenzy.

On Stars I have been branching out to the turbo PLO8 SnGs that I forgot about. When you cash in 10 straight, you’d think you’d remember how profitable that game was for yourself. I cashed in four more this weekend until my string was snapped by some stupid weak-tight play on my part and I bubbled. Gamecock was kind enough to point out the competition at the $35 level wasn’t much better then the $16s then I was accustomed to.

The players didn’t disappoint.

My bankroll can safely play these, yet I’m looking at the money too much, which is bad. There must be some +5 Magic Concoction of the Donkey that I can quaff to get more confidence to play at higher levels (like the $35s that I played last night). On the cash game side, I have been dabbling in the 3/6 and 5/10 games as promised with mixed break-even type results. The only difference in these games is better hand selection (but still not great) and more turn check-raises by slow-players. It’s true you shouldn’t slow-play often in O8, but my aggressive monkey side comes out when I see an orphan pot that no one wants and I make bets that are -EV. Except in the SnGs where I mostly play a “sit-and-wait” type game and get paid off by overly aggressive players who probably mis-clicked the type of game they wanted to play.

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Christmas was celebrated for the 15th time this season last night, as my father-in-law toted over my wife’s two half-brothers and some of the best fuckin wings I’ve ever had. Wing Joint in Blaine (franchise?), the flavor and buffalo styled dipping sauces made for some gluttony only matched by a Thanksgiving Day spread. A couple of 32 oz Cap’n Cokes, a little time in the hot tub, plus all those wings safely in my belly should have put me in a deadly sins induced coma…

What about the dog from the title, Drizz? Lucy, the kind and wonderful canine next door, was thoughtful enough to sing inspirational hymns at 2am for me and the wife. With God’s voice in our ears, sleep would have to wait until the divine’s projected voice got a fuckin milkbone shoved up his ass. Is there any reason the dog needs to be let out when non 3rd shift working stiffs are blissfully dreaming of playing $2/$4 limit hold em' with Brandi from California at the new Hooter’s casino in Las Vegas (watch TLC's Vegas Week for more details)? I guess the neighbors exotic birds were not enough amusement around the house, so they acquired a Rot with a penchant for waking up the neighborhood after the witching hour.

Now I’m at the office just waiting for this Sobe energy drink to kick in so I can be semi-productive as usual.

Thanks for dropping by, now go check out Pauly’s latest guest writer BigMike of the Boathouse and ACHE fame.

And for those of you who need your daily poker affirmation from Phil Helmuth…

Phil’s tip of the day… “Patience, patience, patience”

Drizz’s tip of the day… “Can you spell h-y-p-o-c-r-i-t-e, Phil?”

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Waffles!



Bloggers seemed hungry for waffles last night so here's batch! Strawberries and whip cream are in the fridge.

H.O.R.S.E. tourney was certainly going well till the resident luckbox moved ahead of my counterfeited low on the river to scoop late in the satellite for today's $215 tourney on Full Tilt. He had the chips to donk off, but I wasn't short. Maybe next time the one outer won't hit. I have been hitting up the limit O8 table for the last three with varied success and failures. I believe I'm calling too much and not enough raising, especially at the 3/6 and 5/10 tables.

Today we're finally celebrating X-Mas with the father-in-law so plenty of football, food, and Cap'n Cokes will consumed.

Daddy... you are a fuckin phenom. That is all. Crush.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Drizz The Greek's Playoffs Week 1

PokerStars Tournament #17612656, Pot Limit Omaha Hi/LoBuy-In: $15.00/$1.00
9 players
Total Prize Pool: $135.00
Tournament started - 2006/01/06 - 09:01:26 (ET)
Dear Drizztdj, You finished the tournament in 1st place.
A $67.50 award has been credited to your Real Money account.
Congratulations!Thank you for participating.

Nice to win at a game that I suck at and played in bed while having a pillow fight with Little Drizz. I get tingly just thinking about this new laptop, excuse me while I grab a tissue.

Ok then, get your mirrored glasses out and find out who NOT to bet on this weekend!

Skins at Bucs (-2.5) - Since the defense will cancel each other out, I like the Bucs to use their home field advantage and both cover and win the game

Jags at Pats (-7.5) - Both sides are hurting with key injuries, but Tom Brady is the 00 version of Joe Montana, take the Pats minus the points

Panthers at Giants (-2.5) - Here's my pick... Tiki needs to dominate once again for the Giants to have a chance. If the Panthers can keep him to under 100 yards take the Steve Smith train to the bank.

Steelers at Bungles (+3) - Home underdog? Have you gone mad? Bungle Bungle Bungles!

Thanks for dropping by, and enjoy your weekend folks.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Vince-sanity!

I’m sure any remotely interested college football fan was ready to turn off the TV after the first lackluster quarter last night. Building up a game for three months only to have a Pop Warner junior league styled performance isn’t good entertainment. But, WOW what a finish by Texas! Congrats on the win and my quasi-legal sportsbook account thanks you for hitting the over. Just one thing had a dick on cheese grater feel to the telecast… why all the shots of Matthew McConaughey? I don’t get it, he went to UT and he’s an actor, whoopy fuckin-do. Even during the victory celebration where the PLAYERS should have been getting face time, we were graced with his metrosexual mug and his over-flashing of the “hook em’ horns” gangsta hand signal. Couldn’t they find some cheerleader’s panty shots instead like normal football telecasts?

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On the poker front, I sat down at a NLO8 table with some known decent big bet O8 players on Stars last night to see where I measured up. It was a draw as no real big hands came into play except for the occasional salmon swimming upstream and finding this shark pit. Since a stalemate was going on in that game, on a whim I checked out the limit games going on.

Are they really this bad? Going from a super-tight big bet game where if someone bet they had either locked up a low or a high to someone capping with top pair only was definitely a culture shock to me. Plus, I was actually earning FPPs towards the new VIP system Stars has set up. Unlike the big bet games which are much slower, they don’t normally accrue the necessary pot size to acquire a FPP for the hand unless two players have a cinch or a huge draw.

I loosened up my starting hand requirements and my bankroll thanked me with a tidy 20BB+ win at the $2/$4 table. Wheel on the board? No problem, you’ll still get called down by a set or a flush drawing to only the high (and most of the time, not even the nut flush). Maybe last night was just unusually loose, but even the folks with the larger stacks were making several questionable calls and raises. For the rest of the week, I’ll be exploring the $2/$4 and $3/$6 limit games to see if last night was atypical or constant as the potential profit from these games could be quite high. Poker Babe even quotes the $30/$60 game as a gold mine. Since my purse is fairly small (relatively) and fairly tight (my problem), I won’t be putting up a large chunk of my bankroll to “take a shot” at these games just yet. I will be exploring the $5/$10 games within the next month if there are positive results from the lower stakes limit games if the big bet games continue to tighten up.

If you are deaf/dumb/blind like myself and didn’t read the fecal mist adventures of Daddy’s guest post on Dr. Pauly’s website, you’re missing out. Go now or forever wonder what fecal mist is. Warning do not consume liquids while reading, gut-busting laughter is 99.9% guaranteed.

Thanks for dropping by, now for Phil Hellmuth’s Poker Tip of the Day! Rini is right, these tips are like having a U.S. Treasury printer attached to your laptop!

Phil says: “Phil’s Top Ten Hands: A-A, K-K, Q-Q, A-K, J-J, T-T, 9-9, 8-8, 7-7, A-Q”

Phil says: “Beginners: stick to ‘Phil’s Top Ten Hands’”

Phil says: “I’m a tool”

Shocking that he didn’t include the hammer. Jopke.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

You Might Be A Hold Em' Player


If you think a big wrap is something you use after entering an Amsterdam whore house… you might be a hold em’ player

If you think a doorcard is something you leave for someone after moving out and wanting to break up with them… you might be a hold em’ player

If you’re playing Razz and yell at the dealer for dealing out the flop cards… you might be a hold em’ player

If you’re down to 9 people in a Stud tournament and wonder why they have not combine down to the final table… you might be a hold em’ player

If you think snowing someone consist of something you’d see at cumguzzlers.com… you might be a hold em’ player

If you heard someone yell “goddamn bricks!” at the poker table and offered the gentlemen masonry advice… you might be a hold em’ player

If you ever tried to fold before putting out your ante and the bring-in for having the lowest doorcard… you might be a hold em’ player

If you’ve ever had Felicia scold you for sucking at poker… you might be normal

If you think Badugi is something BG puts into his pasta creations… you might be a hold em’ player

If you think “Rapping Pat” refers to Mr. Miyagi’s musical moniker before the Karate Kid came out… you might be a hold em’ player

If you think playing H.O.R.S.E. means betting the 7 Race at Belmont… you might be a hold em’ player

If you received 9999 in Omaha and at showdown and stood to shout “THEM QUADS BITCHES!”... you might be a hold em’ player

If you think Ray Zee is the new DJ at Caesars Palace’s Pure nightclub… you might be a hold em’ player

If you’re not playing in the PLO8 blogger tourney on January 11th 9pm EST at Stars (password: blogsaregay)… you might be a pussy, go sign up

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I’m ok with getting sucked out on early in a tourney. Big pocket pairs do go down to connectors and the like. I’m ok with KK running into the 38DDs of AA. I’m not ok with playing for three hours to have a three outer hit just shy of the money when I had been running very well.

Lots of have been written about not tilting after beats during tourneys, but it still irkes the shit out of me to watch dominating hands go down late in a tourney. I only played in two tourneys yesterday, forgoing my usual cash games due to lack of concentration, and got rather far in both only to watch the suckout come on the river.

If I could play that Stars $3 rebuy tourney with any regularity, I think there’s some money to be won there.

Here's what I saw last night, maybe those of you who play these tourneys regularly can add a few things:

During the rebuy period, jam with any high pocket pair (don't worry about just taking the blinds you'll get called by any random hand more then 50% of the time) pre-flop and hope your 70-90% favorite comes in.

Trap a little bit with post flop monsters and get called by someone who hit second pair. It deviates from “normal” tournament play as overbetting will get called more often then not because everyone tries to establish a stack before the rebuy period ends of more then 4x the buy in (start with T1500).

After the rebuy period ends its your basic low buy-in tourney play riddled with A-Rag push monkeys, and people with “I Like To Call-Bluff” tattooed on their foreheads. GOLD BABY GOLD! Just avoid the suckouts, or build your stack up enough to absorb a few, and you’ll see a decent payday for such a small buy in (first place took down $5.7K).


Thanks for dropping by, now check out this story courtesy of Fark.com on an unusual divorce, on the second page spells out a couple of things from their pre-nup.

"Paragraph 11: "Renzie will rub Sally's back/neck 3 times during the weekdays, and one time per weekend for a minimum of 5 minutes, but hopefully more, each time."

And to think I do this under my own free will for my wife, maybe I should seek compensation.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

New Years Resolutions (part 31)

Everyone have a good holidays by getting their Christkwanzkah on? I finally got the rest I sorely needed since a weekend of praying to Loki and the porcelain gods in Vegas. Now it’s back to the cubes for “regular” life as I was met with a flood of work while turning on my email browser this morning.

Does anyone look back at what they wrote in for resolutions last year? Do you make such resolutions? Have you ever felt your lunch that you brought to work today is inadequate, tossed it, and then bought lunch instead? Good money management skillz I have.

Let’s see if I followed through on last year’s garble of promises:

1) Spend more time with Little Drizz and wife. Check, in fact I spent so much time with the wife I got her knocked up again! Maybe I should go back to playing poker and MMORPGs for six hours a night to prevent more tax deductions from being spawned.

2) Go Back to School. This one has been discussed thoroughly and will have to go on the back burner as spawn #2 is on his/her way and will take up the majority of our free time for most of the year.

3) Learn More About Poker. Between blogs, books, babes, and bulletin boards, I’ve read more poker knowledge then I ever studied while getting my A.S. degree in Business Management. Do any schools offer a bachelor’s degree in Check-raising PartyPoker chumps? Or a masters’ in Omaha flush card blocking raises (I’m still getting the necessary credits for that one).

4) Playing Poker When I’m Ready To. This one I greatly improved. Not entering tournaments that I’m not ready to play, or cannot finish due to other obligations. No more opening up more tables when the wife says she’s ready for her 15 seconds of heaven. The bloggers still get me to stay up way too late… but I can sleep when I’m six feet under.

5) Meet the Bloggers IRL. I vaguely recall being in Vegas twice this year and seeing a dwarf, a hippy, a GQ model, a princess, and a genius. Can’t wait till next time guys.

6) Win Another MTT But Learn to Play Ring Games Better. Funny how things change over the course of a year. I actually used to think I was a decent tournament player, and while I did have a couple of final table appearance, I did not win a MTT. The majority (if not all) of my profits come while playing ring games, and tournaments are seen more for their entertainment value. If I cash in a tourney, great, I get my entertainment paid for. Much like going to the bar and hitting a $100 pull-tab winner, or winning a bar poker tourney and receiving a paid bar tab. Or going to a strip club and seeing someone you went to school with and receiving a lap dance (literally) on her.

Except for the school thing, I’d say 2005 was a success. I’ve moved up to $2/$4 and $3/$6 limit and $1/$2 no-limit/pot-limit tables regularly. I acquired not one but two poker trophies. The laptop (obtained over the weekend) is the second coolest thing I’ve purchased evah (nothing beats the iPod of course). While lounging on the couch I managed to watch “The Weakest Link”, and play along on GSN.com, eat some Leeann Chin’s (orange chicken, fried rice, and cream cheese wantons if you’re wondering) and cashed in a PLO8 MTT tourney on Stars yesterday. It was much more comfortable then being in the cold basement where I have to make a choice on freezing my hands or feet from the placement of the space heater.

Being a taskmaster and goal setter, I’m looking to fail miserably at the follow things in 2006:

1) Move up to the highest PLO8 tables on Stars: This one is tough, since even the lower limits are riddled with “regulars” and make the games fairly tight.

2) Re-learn to play limit poker: Even though I’d find more pleasure in eating lutefisk naked with Walter Mathieu in an unheated ice fishing house on Lake Vermillion, limit poker is the bread and butter of the poker world despite what’s shown on TV. The big bet games may dry up in the future so learning limit will be critical to those who love this hobby. I’ve been dabbling in the $2/$4 and $3/$6 LO8 games with mild success, while donating in the $3/$6 LHE games. I’d like to move up to $5/$10 by the end of the year.

3) Win a MTT and/or Bust a Pro at Full Tilt: I like poker trophies, so getting one of those “I Busted _______ “ t-shirts from Full Tilt is definitely on the agenda for 2006.

4) Read and Re-read Poker Library: I’m about 1/4th of the way through SSII, having read a dozen other books in 2005. I’d like to read more into the psychological side of poker and thru past posts I have several suggestions from fellow bloggers and readers to follow up on.

5) Play in the 2006 WSOP LO8 tourney: The dear and patient wife has given the green light to play (she never ceases to amaze me) and will be escorting me to the Rio should my bankroll be able to take the hit. I’ve heard of potentially asking people to back me, and I’m sure there would be several kind people to do so. I’ll need to discuss with a few experts before seeking backers.

6) Come up with a name for the new spawn: Drizzette has too much of a double penetration porn queen sound to it. Like Wyatt’s name, I’m sure it will become clear before the baby checks in to our world.

7) Get Together With the Minnesota Mafia and Raid Canterbury: Being the least mobile of the group this will depend on the others to pick up my gimpy ass to go check-raise some ice fisherman off his pair and runner-runner flush draw. Maybe steal some poker magazines while there if Chad doesn’t take them all first.

8) Teach Little Drizz the art of the curve ball: If he chooses to play sports, I’ll be there to teach.

Thanks for dropping by, now check out Wil’s tourney tonight at Stars as there’s a prize within a prize for winning.