Saturday, November 26, 2005

I dream of shots

Las Vegas is just getting too close for comfort. Lat night I dreamt I won just over half a mil on some strange Let it Ride/Video Poker hybrid using the remote control in our room at the Imperial Palace. The only other thing that I remember with any clarity from the dream was jetting straight over to the Wynn and getting a suite while Mrs. Head chartered a flight back home to hire a barber shop quartet to sing some variation of “Fuck Off” to her boss. I remember walking into the suite and being very drunk and surrounded by other similarly drunk blogging compatriots.

It was a good dream.

It wasn’t long after that I was stumbling out of bed hazily searching for a cold Coke and my Camel Wides so I could begin the day, when somewhere in the house I kept hearing a muffled beep. I thought it might be one of the smoke detectors crying out for a new battery, but the sound wasn’t nearly annoying enough. Shit, I must’ve missed a phone call. After leaving work on Wednesday I had left my cell in my coat pocket so as not to have to think about it all weekend, because many times I find myself longing for the cell phones of old that didn’t have the ability to speak up when they wanted attention.

I thought work may have called, so with a heavy heart I listened to the voicemail. The heaviness changed as I realized I had just received a dial-a-shot from Bobby Bracelet, BG, and THG. DAMNIT!

So, brothers, I offer my humblest apologies for not scoring the completion when the DAS went out. I humbly offer this post-Thanksgiving post-a-shot in return.

The Apple Pie Shot

Mix 3 Parts vodka (can be a mid-grade, you won’t be tasting it) w/ 1 part Apple Juice
Have 1 can of whip cream handy
Tin of cinnamon

The most entertaining way to do this shot is with two people. One person takes the shot and keeps it in their mouth, tilting their head back and not swallowing. The second squirts a bit of the whipped cream into their mouth and taps a small bit of cinnamon on top. Person #1 tilts forward and swallows. Porny, no?

Of course, it is perfectly acceptable to simply pour the liquor into a shot glass, throw a bit of whipped directly on top of the liquid, add cinnamon, and shoot it like a normal person. It’s just a bit less fun as they begin to have their effect.

Best of luck to everyone as they try to get through these next two weeks!

Friday, November 25, 2005

Done and Almost Done

At of 3 P.M. today, I reached the summit of Mt. NaNoWriMo.


Now the bad news. It still isn’t finished. I think I have about 15K words left to write before the story will be finished which is something I never expected. Now the question is, can I get it truly finished (not just the 50K word goal) before we head to Vegas?

I hope so.

I love you, FullTilt


All I can say is that if the FullTilt (bonus code: HHEAD) live event last night kicked much ass. Poker is fun to watch, but when it’s fun AND instructional like the show last night, it can’t be beat. The end got a little silly because of the blinds, but there’s nothing anyone can really do about that for a program of that type. I think FullTilt pulled it off as good as a live event could have been. It was good enough that I even hate FSN less for their continual Poker Superstars Invitational abortion.

Oh, yeah. Howard Lehderer? It's been said a milion times already, but here it is again. Best poker commentator EVER.

Rather than go on and on about the particulars, I’ll leave it at this: If you missed it last night, try hard to find a torrent or something, it will be worth your time.

Hope everyone had a great holiday! I’m thankful for a ton of things, but not the abuse I’m still taking at the tables. 2-outer river beats galore, and I’m losing my mind, but going back for more, nonetheless. Oh yes, one last thing. I had Mrs. Head hit me with a book when I was tilting a couple of days ago. That shit actually works! Shock therapy=Tilt be gone. Who knew?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Pokerstars just keeps getting better

I have stuck primarily with Pokerstars for my online pokering since I began, and they have never disappointed—from their customer support to nice software and of course, the tournaments. They were doing it right before anyone else. So a huge thanks to them for their WPBT support. If you’ve been under a rock or in a third world country, go read this to get up to speed. Sure I’ve strayed over to other sites, but Stars has always been my first love. That punk bitch PartyPoker thinks she’s all that and a bag of chips, sending me ultimatums and taking back my player points. She can keep ‘em, stupid bitch; I don’t care how good the fishing is.

Full Tilt (Bonus code: HHEAD) is definitely my piece on the side, though, with (IMHO) the best software out there and a player base that will hopefully balloon completely out of control pretty soon. They have also shown a ton of WPBT support and I would be absolutely remiss if I didn't mention them , too.

Right now my pokering between the two is about a 70/30 split. If your not playing at either of these two sites yet, just use the handy-dandy links on the sidebar and get to it.

Thanks again, Otis and Pokerstars + Full Tilt for "getting it"!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Emotion Commentary

Man, it’s hard to even put into words the size and ruggedness of the steel-toed boots poker strapped on yesterday and this morning. She laced ‘em up tight and went to work on my junk like a man-hating Lifetime producer. So here I sit with an icepack on my nuts and a fistful of anti-depressants, writing to you, dear reader, on the verge of a massive tilt-induced coronary of SirWaffle proportions minus the bankroll destruction.

Such is my dedication.

This situation lends itself nicely to a post that I’ve been brooding over for about a week now. I’ve been putting it off in the intense wake of NaNoWriMo, and lo and behold, it was covered in fine fashion by Hank who likely said it better than I could have. In taking on the more difficult task of writing the spearhead post on emotions, he has left me with the much lighter load of simple commentary.

(before proceeding, click on the link and read his post first if you haven’t already)

Winding up his post, Hank states, “In answer to the question, "Do emotional poker players have an advantage in tournament poker?" I think the jury is still out.” For me, the jury is in and they have reached a verdict:

Being an emotional player, be it in cash games or tournaments, is NOT where it’s at.

I repeat. NOT where it’s at.

I can say this with confidence because I am one of these emotional players. Watching these folks that have the ability to retain an ever cold and logical outlook makes me Scott's Turfbuilder green with envy. I have no idea where this emotionality comes from. Perhaps I didn’t get enough hugs from Mom. Perhaps I’ve been beat down by “The Man” one too many times in my short life. Whatever the reason, I am not, and it’s doubtful that I’ll ever be, a person with the ability to be completely emotionless.

Being emotional will cause a person to make frustration errors. Some emotional people will have better control and make less of them, but they will happen, and will happen more than those made by the person who can truly let the injustices and attendant frustrations slide off their back. If I get my aces cracked by runner runner gutshot backdoor shit cards, I’m going to be pissed. Carry this situation over multiple days or weeks and my heart starts in with threats of exploding inside my chest cavity if I don’t play those suited one-gappers out of position. Just once, you know, to get me back on an even keel.

Now, take the above and apply it to the roboticism of Hank and others like him. The aces being cracked will briefly annoy, but the cold precision of their play will continue unabated. Assuming that the skill level is the same (yeah, right. While I’m at it, why not go ahead and say that I play ball as good as MJ), if I make this error once per day that costs me at least 1 SB (and likely more) and Hank does not, just think about how much that he saves over the course of a year. And that’s just a loosely defined cash game example. What if the same loosely defined terms were applied to a tournament? I end up busting because I got trapped in a marginal situation and am either busted or have taken a hit to my stack. Hank’s cold logic avoids this foolishness and by doing so automatically gets an edge with which to travel higher on the placement ladder.

The conclusion? Be more like Hank and less like me.

But fear not, dear friends. I’m not one to simply discuss a problem, but rather, as corporate America has lovingly taught me, I must bring alternative solutions to the table. Think outside of the box and change the paradigm in order to assess the risk and take advantage of the current trends to fortify and streamline future margins and matrices, as it were (dear God, I seriously need a healthier work environment).

Get a big stick, preferably a giant bamboo stick like they use/used in traditional old-school martial arts training in the East. Give said stick to spouse, significant other, roommate, friend, or neighbor. Task this person with keeping a close eye on you while you play. When pesky detrimental tilt starts to arrive on the back of those ruinous emotions, have said designee whack you with the big bamboo stick. It will hurt and it will make you mad, but will help you recognize the absurdity of getting so angry. If it doesn’t, simply repeat until you DO recognize or are too injured to play.

Either way, everyone wins. Bankroll is intact and tilt is avoided, plus your designee has had a fantastic time doing something that would normally be considered “assault”. Pfft, assault, what a bunch of pansies.

My Tae Kwon Do grandmaster, Jin Yong Kim, used to always say, “You will NEVER have perfect Tae Kwon Do, but that doesn’t mean you should ever stop trying for it.” The same goes for getting rid of emotional play at the tables. You may not ever be perfect at it, but with constant effort and the help of a giant bamboo stick, you should never stop trying and consequently, get better at control.

Emotion is NOT where it’s at.