Friday, April 01, 2005

April Fools Question

I am not a Catholic, so I must ask, since it popped into my head this morning with the news that the Pope’s health has taken a drastic turn for the worse:

“Would Catholics be super-pissed, or would they simply be relieved if they found out that it was a massive April Fool’s joke perpetrated by the Vatican?”

If I was Pope, I’d probably try it. Discuss.

Thursday, March 31, 2005

Poker is an Asscock

(title courtesy of Mrs. Head)

I was hoping to get out of class early last night so I could take over my spot at the table for the WPBT tourney.

Didn’t happen.

It’s probably best, since Mrs. Head made it to 40th hanging on with the thinnest of stacks and the worst cards, whereas I most likely would have gone out earlier on some kind of dumbass play.

Here is a card summary courtesy of Mrs. Head: My cards sucked. Highest hand all night was a pair of 6’s. I saw three Aces, all with a 2 or a 3 kicker. It’s like I got slapped with some kind of unlucky asscock. (OK, I admit it, she didn’t really write that, it’s just a short summary of a longer diatribe)

Other than the cards though, it was a blast, and she thanks all of the folks she played with and spoke to for making it fun, including Shelly, April, UpforPoker (CJ?), John Paul, and Pauly. Apologies to anyone she missed, she wasn’t sure who everyone was and didn’t feel like taking a bunch of notes.

Highlight of the evening: Finding out that “asscock” is allowed in chat.

Asscock, Asscock, Asscock. Use it in a sentence today.

PS—If your feeling the blues from work, check out the StB’s haiku in the comments of the previous post. Nice.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Haiku for the Corporate Monkey

Bland colors painted,
with motivational quips.
Decomposing soul.

Semi-private walls,
Holding like the strongest grip.
Case of the mondays.

(Geez, I gotta find somemthing to do)

Subtle Tilt: The Devil Inside

Last night was a losing night, -3 BB. Why is this worth taking up space on a page to mention? Subtle tilt didn’t get me, that’s why. The games last night weren’t quite as loose and sloppy as they were on Monday, but they were still decent. I started out on $2/4, but these were way too tight (pots averaging about 4 BB) so I dropped down to the looser $1/2, where they were running at least 7 10 BB/pot.

Right out of the gate, I get KK. I love great hands like this but am always worried when I get them on the first hand. After a preflop 3-bet with 5 people coming along for the ride, the flop comes AA2 and is 3 bet in front of me, so I feel I have to dump it. I suppose that this could be argued as weak playing given the size of the pot, but it turns out my read was good since the SB had A2 for the flopped full house. Ugh. Over the next 2 orbits I had quite a few really good starting hands, most coming with position. The problem was that either the flop didn’t cooperate (at all) or the river would save someone who had been calling against my top holding. I managed to get rivered five times within those first three orbits, and I could feel the subtle tilt coming on.

I opened up another table to play while I battled at the first one, and resolved to do one thing: Keep playing my good holdings aggressively, even though I’ve been getting crucified by suckouts thus far. This is much easier said than done for me, because when things go as they were last night, you can hear the pinging of the fish radar noticeably increase.

Fish Radar?

Yes, fish radar. I call it fish radar in general, but it applies to good players as well as fish. I can’t exactly blame them either, given the amount of hands I happened to be playing, and losing. The one or two decent players at the table kept coming at me, of course, because they immediately tagged due to the sheer amount of hands played in only a few orbits. 14 hands in three full orbits, I would have tagged me as a loose fish too, but goddamnit, I had an unusually high amount of playable starting hands! It worked out eventually, as the aforementioned decent players at the table finally realized I wasn’t the fish they originally thought once some of my later hands started to hold up. Hell, one of them even commented on the fact. I wish it would have taken them a bit longer to notice, however, because it took away from my comeback profit.

Next comes the second, and most often seen incarnation of the “Fish Radar”. Once I got rivered for the third or fourth time, any time I was in the hand so were the loose fish, no matter what. You could literally hear them thinking, “This time is my turn to suckout.” They all had tone and were looking to knock me out of the sky. Thankfully the cards turned, I was able to throw out some chaff, and eventually escaped the fishy missiles.

Here is why I’m proud of my loss: As I stated earlier, I’m normally very susceptible to the subtle tilt, slipping quickly into weak/tight mode when my good hands don’t hold up. By continuing to play my good holdings as they should be played, I made many more BB’s than I would have had I succumbed, and thereby limited and nearly eradicated my early losses. I won’t say this time that I’m over it or immune to it, but I can proudly report that it’s getting better, slowly but surely.

Note to the fishes: Pray for a quick death, cuz I’m steady coming for ya.

Obligatory Reminder:

Details: Wednesday, March 30th
$20 + $2 - No-Limit
Poker Stars - Private tournament tab
Password: thehammer

I can’t make it to the tourney tonight, but watch out anyway, Mrs. Head will be stepping in for me. Good Luck to everyone!

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

The death of the low-carb

The news was crying doomsday this morning because the low-carb fad has gone by the wayside. Were they actually expecting it to stick around? As a former bodybuilder, I’m all for the low-carb high protein diet combined with some good exercise, but the low-carb craze continues to piss me off.

A couple of weeks ago I made a trip to the store to pick up some stuff, and being in a hurry I simply grabbed some bagels on my way out. Yum, it’s been some time since I had a nice bagel. Get home, pop one in to toast, add some jam, take a bite. WTF?!! Who replaced my nice bagel with a sponge that tastes like notebook paper? I check the package and lo and behold, it’s a low-carb bagel, which sent me off on a tangent that scared the dogs and got severely on Mrs. Head’s nerves. Stupid goddamn low-carb crap. You can follow a good low-carb diet without all of the paper products manufactured to resemble food, and it’s a damn shame most don’t understand that.

Now it’s winding down, though, and big food is back, baby. Even if it is terrible for you, it is and always has been so very delicious. Word up to the Carl’s Jr. Double Thick Burger, a beef and pork heart attack extravaganza. Am I the only one who finds it simultaneously amusing and sad that as a society we can’t (or don’t want to) achieve any kind of balance? Four pound greaseburger or a paper bagel. What happened to all the normal stuff?

Just in case you’ve been off the planet or under a rock, here’s a WPBT tourney reminder:

Details: Wednesday, March 30th
$20 + $2 - No-Limit
Poker Stars - Private tournament tab
Password: thehammer

Also, while I’m giving out just in case nuggets, right now are some good times over at Stars. Compared to Party the cash games there have always been pretty slim pickings, but in the last 2-3 weeks they’ve gotten progressively looser and softer (the games, not Paris Hilton & friends, pay attention). I can only surmise that this is due to the simultaneous running of WPT and WSOP satellites and the like. A ton of loosey goosey people trying to luck their way into being another Moneymaker, who obviously enjoy spewing chips in between $2 Turbo Rebuy tourneys. It’s been like Party Poker extreme over the last few days. Just last night I witnessed an $83 pot on one of the $1/2 tables I was at. Eight months ago I would have cringed at such thing, now I jump up and down with glee like a short bus class that just inherited a million dollars….payable in candy and stickers.

Some people’s progression in this game is similar to that of the Tortoise.

Others are similar to the Hare.

Whichever one you are, if you’re decent and sit at one of these tables, you’ll get yours, no matter your speed.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Me Play Good Poker One Day

Oh Boy, Vegas just keeps getting closer. CJ is almost finished with the RSVP list, and it seems as though there will be no shortage of degenerates meeting up for some great fun. I am extremely pumped to meet everyone.

The bankroll continues slow (VERY slow) but steady progress, which is becoming frustrating. Last night, in the $2 Stars crapshoot, I clawed my way to 104th out of 2325, only to make a stupid call and knock myself out. After much reflection last night, I think part of my frustration is the fact that I still haven’t mastered myself (no pun intended) enough to hang on in the late stages of a tourney. I work hard, stay patient, and concentrate, only to blow it in the late stages. Heh, I guess that’s why I’m still playing the $2 crapshoot.

On Friday I decided to take the opportunity to remind myself why I don’t play NL cash games. I completely suck at them. I think the reason for this is the fact that I’ve been focusing on Limit and am still in that mindset, so after donating $25 because of an overplayed JJ, that’s where I headed, back to the Limit tables. I think Limit stays more appealing to me simply because if I make a nasty error like overplaying my JJ it doesn’t cost me nearly as much. Granted, I can’t make quite as much, but I’m not necessarily playing to make a ton of money. Yes, I still want to make money, but at the level I play, I think that keeping the bankroll on a even keel with no real wild swings will allow me to keep the focus on learning, improving, and eventually stepping up.

Rounding out today’s confessional post, I must admit that I still haven’t fully accepted the fact that there is no justice in this game. I’ve posted several times in the past about how I’m coming to grips with this, but last night proved that I still haven’t really done so, and it makes me feel like a relapsed alcoholic. After busting out of the crapshoot I watched Mrs. Head in the process of working over some seriously tight passive’s at a $5 SnG, when the following occurred. Mrs. Head (big stack) gets AJs in the BB, button limps (2nd big stack), SB completes. Mrs. Head raises to 5X BB (100/200 ante 25), button goes into the tank and calls, SB folds. Flop AJx, 2 diamonds. Mrs. Head pushes due to the diamonds on the board, and button calls off the rest of her money, and turns over 77, no diamond. Of course the turn spikes her 2-outer, leaving the Mrs. with about T800, which she lost about 3 hands later.

Cue the Human Head Hiroshima Tilt.

I think what really caused it was the choruses of ‘Great Call’ and ‘Great Play’ that followed the unlikely win. Even the girl who won thought it was a great play, not even for a second acknowledging how supremely lucky it was.

So, new rule. No more watching Mrs. Head play poker, at least until such time as I can develop an emotional IQ that is higher than that of a infant monkey. Perhaps a lobotomy would help. As we prepared for bed I decided to revisit SSHE since it’s been a few months, and it is something I need to do a bit more often with my poker literature. It made me feel much better to see that I have actually made some progress in my game. I found that I had really absorbed some of the lessons it contains, and as well highlighting some lessons that I had overlooked the first couple of times through.

With that in mind, I need to get a new book. I waffling between HEPFAP and The Theory of Poker. For those that have read these, what is your opinion? I want HEPFAP, but I think it would just confuse my game at it’s current level, so Theory of Poker is a better choice methinks. I love that word. Methinks. OK, just one more time. Methinks.

Talk to you all later.