1-31-06 [poker] - 3

1-31-06 [poker]

I played the last match in the heads up series with Dustin. He won the series 4-0 (!!!). I can't believe I got skunked, especially because I don't feel like I really got outplayed, though maybe I made a few more donkey moves than he did. In this last match I feel like I was generally in charge of the match, and got some very good cards, until one horrific hand took place :

Dustin limped the SB (Button). I checked in the BB with 23o. Flop was KJ5. I checked, my hand is junk, and Dustin bet 2 chips, 10k, into a 20k pot, and said "whoops I meant to bet 3". Suddenly alarm bells went off in my head. He's disturbed he didn't bet enough because he's bluffing and wants me to fold! So, I called the small bet. Turn was a 4. Now I have an open ender. The pot was now 40k, and Dustin only had like 80k left (I was a decent chip leader at the time), so it's hard for me to have any moves. If I check and he bets, he's pot-stuck himself and I can't raise enough to fold him. So, I just led all-in with my straight draw. Dustin called with J9, I think, and it held up.

Sort of bad luck for him to actually have a hand there, but also a bad donk move by me, it's not a believable line for me to bluff, and the call on the flop is just ridonculous. I have this major poker brain defect where if something weird happens in the hand it totally throws off my game and I do wacky things.

1-31-06 [poker] - 2

1-31-06 [poker]

I've got a new idea for playing low pockets (shh don't tell any one). This is mainly against decent players. What you do is min-raise them preflop. Normally I hate the min raise, but here's the thing : with low pockets, you don't want people to fold, so that's okay. Now, if someone has a high pair, like JJ+ they're going to reraise you. Because you only min-raised, that reraise isn't too big, so you can call it and try to make a set. Because of their reraise, you know exactly what they have and will get paid if you connect. Basically the min raise is teasing them into unveiling their strength. If you made a normal size raise, like 4X BB, then they could raise to 14 BB and you're not getting good odds to call. Of course you don't want to announce your hand so clearly, so you also should min raise some other things, like suited connectors, mid pockets, suited aces, basically hands where you don't need to thin the field.

The key to this strategy is there's a major flaw in most low-limit NL player's game : they don't reraise with many hands, and they almost always reraise with high pockets, and furthermore they usually raise too small, because they want action.

1-31-06 [poker] - 1

1-31-06 [poker]

I'll let you in on two nice bluffs that are almost 100% effective and easy. (these are both for heads up pots only, multiway pots I almost never bluff).

1. Bluff the 4-flush. Any time there's 4 to a suit on the board and your opponent hasn't really shown interest in the hand, you bet the pot. You're risking X to win X, so you need to win >= 50% of the time here. It's very hard for your opponent to call without a flush, and he has a flush much less than 50% of the time. He has the flush about 36% of the time here, so your EV is -1 + 0.64*2 = 0.28 (in units of pots).

2. Bluff the split pot. Any time you think it's very likely you're splitting the pot, you should bluff. Say the board is something like 7744J and you have an ace kicker. You think you're both playing sevens and fours with an ace. You should bet the pot. Against a mediocre opponent, don't do this too much, because he'll just think "we're splitting, I call", so it's not so +EV, and you lose value when he does have something like 55. Against a thinking opponent who understands pot odds, it's very hard for them to call this if it's believable that you might have a better hand. The reason is if they call and split, they only win half the pot, so they're risking X to win X/2. That means they have to be right 66.6% of the time for their call just to be break even. Of course the correlary to this is you need to bet out when not splitting.


1-30-06 [poker] - 1

1-30-06 [poker]

I just discovered a new stat which appears to be the single most correlated simple stat for fishyness. I call it "PFWtSD%". This is similar to the standard Poker Tracker stat "WtSD%" , which is "went to show down percentage", eg. how many hands do they take to showdown after seeing a flop. The "PF" in mine means from "pre flop", which means they take a hand all the way from being dealt to show down. For a solid typical TAG type player, PFWtSD% is usually in the 2-5% range. That comes from folding a lot preflop or postflop, but also from betting postflop and getting others to fold so there's no showdown. An uber fish will have a PFWtSD% over 10%. I've seen them above 40% (!!). This means they're not betting much, and are calling bets, and when they are betting they're getting called a lot. Unlike other stats, the correlation here is fantastic. For example, if you just use "vpip" (voluntarily put in pot), you can find the loose preflop players, but some of them are very tight/aggressive postflop, so they aren't necessarilly fishies, but even those guys have a low PFWtSD, since they will usually fold or get their opponent to fold before showdown. If they're showing down a lot (high PFWtSD%) and their big pot % is high, then they're a money factory.

It's a funny truth that these statistics are far more reliably than their winnings. Obviously over a large # of hands, you can just look at someone's winnings and tell if they're giving away money or taking in money, but that number is incredibly variable. Players that I'm sure are good show big losses over 5k hands. Players I know are terrible show wins. The actual money won is incredibly affected by short term luck, which makes it a bad way to pick fishies. Someone's play style stats are also affected by short term cards, but much less so.


1-29-06 [poker] - 1

1-29-06 [poker]

Here are some real poker secrets for you.

1. Don't try to avoid going losing with AA vs. sets and other well disguised hands. eg. don't try to fold. What you should do is pot control. When you have one pair (eg. AA) you play a small pot. When you have a set, you play a big pot. Now, you will win Set vs. AA just as often as you lose AA vs. Set, but the pot sizes are in your favor.

2. Don't try to get tricky and milk your big hands (mostly). You just bet your big hands. If you didn't get paid on your big hand, it's not because you didn't extract enough. It's because of all the *other* hands you've played - you didn't play them aggressively enough to create a loose/wild image.

3. You need to reraise AA and KK preflop. If you're worried that it gives away your hand and you won't get action, the problem there is not the reraise with AA and KK, the problem is that you're not reraising enough!! Reraise with more hands, that will get you action when you reraise AA and KK. (see also "Shania" and 23o).

1-29-06 - 1


Pretty much any time the monitor goes to sleep & wakes up again, it gets slightly out of adjustment and I have to auto-adjust again. That's annoying. Also, thanks to Sean I know about the 1x1 grid trick, and you can really see if the monitor's off adjustment with a 1x1 black and white grid. It looks all wavy and shimmery when it's out of adjustment. So now I've gone all OCD and I have to open my adjuster image and run the auto-adjust all the time. Damn! If only I didn't know it could be this could, I could relax about it !

I still think the Planar is sharper for black and white text, but the Dell looks just amazing with color photos. I got a bunch of 1920x1200 photos from interfacelist and they just blow me away. The default color settings on the Dell were really whack too. The "PC Standard" makes everything look super green. I've got it set at Red 44, Green 55, Blue 45, which seems about right, but I'm not happy about the fact that I just pulled those numbers out of my ass. I need Amish Nick to calibrate everything for me.


1-28-06 - 1


The first season of American Idol, I suppose contestants didn't really know what they were in for, and it was funny to think you had all these people who seriously thought they had a shot, but were just really aweful. Now the contestants surely know what they're in for, and yet the horrible ones go anyway and ham it up and take their tongue-lashing. That's not funny, it's part of a sick American humiliation (in the family with Girls Gone Wild), in which the average American will gladly humiliate themselves to get on TV. It makes me sick to my stomach. Coming in 2050 - watch as contestants are forced to eat shit and watch as their mother is gang-raped, and then tearfully thank their host for the priviledge to be on America's Greatest Humiliations. A lot of people blame "Hollywood" or the producers, but the people who should really be ashamed are those who participate and those who watch.


1-27-06 [poker] - 3

1-27-06 [poker]

Okay, I know you hate bad beat stories as much as I do. Today I took several horrible beats from uber-fishes.

MP ($92.94)
CO ($165.10)
Button ($97)
SB ($267)
Hero ($152.75)
UTG (Donk) ($68.85)

Preflop: Hero is BB with Ad, Ah. SB posts a blind of $0.50.
UTG (Donk) calls $1, 3 folds, SB (poster) raises to $3.5, Hero raises to $13, UTG (Donk) calls $13, SB calls $10.

Flop: ($42) Kh, Td, Qs (3 players)
SB checks, Hero bets $30, Donk calls $30, SB folds.

Turn: ($102) 5c (2 players)
Hero pushes all in, Donk calls ($23)
River: ($137.70) 9h (2 players)

Final Pot: $137.70

SB shows Js6s for a straight

(some of the other beats were actually worse, but this one definitely goes in the "WTF" category).

Anyhoo, that's just poker, the bad thing is I got tilted and blew off another $100 stack. I also had to leave these games which were very juicy, obviously. I have got to somehow fix this leak. If I could've stayed on my A game it's likely I would've gotten a lot of the money back from these guys.

1-27-06 [poker] - 2

1-27-06 [poker]

I finally tried PartyMine, which is free now. It's quite nice. I also just discovered something unbelievable - Party writes the hand histories to a bunch of ".hhf" files in the PartyPoker app dir !! You can just copy these files to scrape the hand histories from any tables you have open! I'm sure this is how PartyMine works, and I could've saved a shit-ton of work if I'd known that. (it's not quite that easy because the HHF files are full of partial/broken hand histories, but it's almost that easy).

The party graphics replacements at Poker Mods are cool. I like "Mirage", nice and clean.

1-27-06 [poker] - 1

1-27-06 [poker]

Went up to NL $600 today to chase a major fish. There were 4 tough pros at the table, the fish, and me. That was scary as shit, because just a decent open raise is $24. Bet the pot, it's $50. I took down a few little pots but my fishy busted off his stack to someone else again. It definitely got the blood flowing again.

I also busted a tough LAG in a big hand. It went something like this. I get JJ and raise to 4 BB. Tough LAG calls in the SB. Flop is 772. LAG checks, I bet pot, LAG calls. LAG now either has a 7,2, a pair, or some junk planning to bluff later. Turn is a 3. LAG checks, I bet pot, LAG min raises, I just call. LAG probably has a little something now. River is another 3. That's a bit of a bad card for me, as if the LAG happened to have a 3, he's now ahead. LAG pushed all in on the river. Most likely LAG has a 7 or 2, less likely she backed into a 3. There are two 7's and three 2's, so I'm 3:2 more likely to be ahead and the pot is giving me good odds. I call, LAG shows T2, and I skoop a big pot.


1-26-06 [poker] - 1

1-26-06 [poker]

The AJ hand : blinds t400/800, four players see the flop for $2500 each. Flop is J43, all hearts. I have AJ with the ace of hearts. My first though is "Woo hoo!". There's now t10,800 in the pot. Jim leads all in !!! Jim is a tight solid player, so he must have something good. Folds to me and I have t15k left. Now I'm thinking "Doh!". I struggled a bit and tried to put him on a hand. At the table I felt like I was surely behind, he has something better and is protecting it. I thought maybe he also had AJ. Now that I think about it, I should have called in a second, I should've been delighted to get my chips in. I put him on these hands : { 33,44,JJ, (a set), AJ, (top pair), QQ-AA (an overpair) }. If he has those hands, I'm about 48% to win. I'm behind but the pot is giving me huge odds. I CALL! If I could know that he has exactly a set, I should fold, but I don't think I can rule out the overpairs or top pair. Also, if I think he has a made flush, maybe that would bias it, but there simply aren't that many flushing hands he can have (Jim wouldn't play any two suited), and it seems unlikely a high flush would just push all in there, maybe a low flush would, but there aren't many low flush hands he'd play (maybe 9Ts).

Anyway, the thing I got from this is I'm still actually too conservative about calling all-ins. I'm pretty aggressive about pushing, but when it comes to calling allins where I'm slightly behind, I just hate it. Next time I'll say "I'm behind, but I gladly call". Maybe this is also one of those hands where if I had better physical tell reading skills I could have picked up that he had the set.

Another question that came up - if two players are all-in and you have AK, and you've already called a small raise, you have to call. If you know you're against two lower pairs you're 36% to win, so you have a nice overlay (I actually thought it was better than that, more like 40%, but 36% is still good enough). If you might be against AA and KK, but also might be against AQ or AK, it's about the same still, 36%. Maybe if you have a tight read on them so you think AA and KK are more likely, then you could fold. It's a pretty huge +EV call, you can't fold that. It may not look all that +EV, you're only 36%, but say your stack was 10k to start and you've already put 1k in, you're calling 9k to win 30k, that's a +2k move, that's 20% of your stack! That's a huge edge to pass up.

1-26-06 - 2


So, I couldn't find a decent window sizer app that was free, so I wrote one. Use a hot key program (like Hot Key Plus ), and have it run "winmove" to control your windows. I've set it up to do left/right/center on my monitor, as well as minimize, maximize, and restore.

I also couldn't find handy code to get an argc/argv in a windows app, so I wrote a super crappy version :

char ** GetWinArgs(int * pargc)
	LPWSTR cli = GetCommandLineW();
	int argc;
	LPWSTR * argvw = CommandLineToArgvW(cli,&argc);
	*pargc = argc;

	char ** argv = (char **) malloc( sizeof(char *) * argc );

	for(int i=0;i LESS argc;i++)
		int len = wcslen(argvw[i]);
		argv[i] = (char *)malloc( sizeof(char)*(len+1) );
		for(int c=0;c LESS len;c++)
			argv[i][c] = (char) argvw[i][c];
		argv[i][len] = 0;

	return argv;

Yes, I know it leaks, and I don't give a damn. Addendum : apparently MSVC provides these things __argc and __argv in stdlib.h which are valid even for windows apps, so that's even easier.

1-26-06 - 1


Handy windows key shortcuts you may have forgotten :

Windows-D : toggles desktop visible. Seems to be the same as Windows-M + Windows-Shift-M.

Windows-Break : opens system info/management panel (like right-clicking My Computer)


1-25-06 - 1


I've gotten a lot of emails about GoldBullion in the last week. I wonder if I just showed up as a link somewhere popular?

Sierra Summit was all right. The place kinda sucks, but it was completely empty. I don't think we ever waited in line for even a second. The snow was decent, and the views are fantastic.

Halogen headlights have got to go. Fuck all of you with halogens, you blind me at night when you're oncoming traffic. If I swerve and crash into you, it's your fault.


1-24-06 - 2


I found the proper monitor settings :

Modeline "1920x1200"  154.128 1920 1968 2000 2080  1200 1203 1209 1235 -hsync -vsync

Though the tech spec seems to suggest +hsync is more correct :

VESA, 1920 x 1200 74.0 kHz 60.0 Hz 154.0 +/- 

Some links for anyone else who wants to go through this hell :

Omega Drivers
Laptop video tweaks guide
ATI's product specs
forum about the 2405
driver for the 2405
Widescreen Gaming monitor tools
Mod Tool for ATI drivers (not needed)
Dell 2405 tech specs

Sean tipped me off that the auto-adjust works best if you have a 1x1 grid up. I just tried it and with very little testing, it does appear to be the case; the black on white text is crisper.

1-24-06 - 1


Off to ski at the local mountain, Sierra Summit. I've heard it's pretty crappy, but I've never been, so we'll see. We were thinking of going to Mammoth, but the drive is just ridiculous, it's like 8 hours from here.


1-23-06 [poker] - 1

1-23-06 [poker]

I just flopped a str8flush with 78s. That happens 1 in 4900 times you hold a suited connector. I made myself a big stack in a tourney and then blew it like a moron. You would not believe some of the nutty insane shit I did. Here's just one example :

Party Poker No-Limit Hold'em Tourney, Big Blind is t100 (6 handed)
Hero (t4107)
MP (t1948)

Preflop: Hero is Button with 4d, Qc.
1 fold, MP raises to t200, 1 fold, Hero raises to t800, 2 folds, MP pushes all in
Hero calls t1148.

MP shows Ad Kc

Sometimes I try too hard to make a good Gus-like move; by "Gus-like" I mean a move that makes people go "wtf, what a donkey", but it was actually a good +EV move. Last year's PCA, that Swedish dude suffered from that problem, making the call allin with 64o and shit like that. I've been playing really dumb in tournaments recently, I've wasted like $200. On the plus side, my mad cash skillz are more than making up for it.

Today I was waiting for a seat to open up at a really choice table, and I was watching it as I waited. There were 3 crazy fishes and 3 semipros at the table. Oddly enough, the fishies were winning huge pots and the pros kept losing their stacks and rebuying. I saw one pro lose his stack with AA against a set. I saw another lose his stack with AK top pair K's against a flush. In both cases the pros were fast to get their stacks in with weak hands (one pair is always a weak hand in no limit). Yes, they were right that those hands were likely best against fishies, but that doesn't mean you need to play for your whole stack with one pair. Pot control is always key. The pros got greedy and the fishies spanked 'em. I've made the same mistake many times and am only now getting my head straight.

I've been winning pretty consistently at a sick win rate at $100 NL ($1 BB). I think it's about time to move up to $200 ($2 BB).

1-23-06 - 1


I got my new Dell 2405fpw today. The same UPS guy who saw us having sex the other day delivered it and we had an awkward signing ceremony. It's pretty nice, though not without problems. The black level in the background is not perfectly uniform. It does the annoying long auto-adjust like all Dell LCD's (flashing through lots of self-test cycles whenever the resolution changes or you reboot). Worst of all, I can only drive it analog from my laptop, not with the full glory of DVI, so it doesn't have that razor sharpness that it should.

It was a major pain in the ass getting my laptop to drive it right. First of all, stupid Dell failed to put the monitor drivers on the CD, so you have to go find them at Dell tech support and force them to install. Next, the old ATI drivers on my laptop wouldn't drive the monitor over 1600x1200 (it needs 1920x1200), so I had to get the Omega drivers. That worked, fortunately (installing drivers on laptops is a crapshoot). I still couldn't get the right modes to register, so I had to use PowerStrip and force their standard Analog LCD 1920x1200 mode. That's all done and it seems to be coolness. Since the display settings were set up manually by powerstrip I have no idea if they're actually optimal for the 2405. It's hella hard to find decent info about anything on computers, my god. The best I could find was some Linux "modelines" which are a bunch of numbers that mean god knows what.

I think you can tell what you're excited about on your computer by what you try out on your hot new monitor. What did I try? Looked at some of my digital camera photos, read email & a web forum, and opened up Party Poker, of course baby! This thing shows 4 tables comfortably, and 6 with a bit of a squeeze.

There's another really annoying thing about the widescreen. When you maximize windows it fills this whole beast, and no window actually has that much in it, so all the goods go way off to the left, like five feet to the left. I think "maximize" on this beast should make the window 1600x1200 and centered, or something. Maybe I'll write an app to do this. ctrl-shift-1 : 1600x1200 center, ctrl-shift-2 = 960x1200 left, ctrl-shift-3 = 960x1200 right.

I'm kind of jealous of Danielle's setup now. I gave her my Planar PX191M, which is still one of the best LCD's I've ever seen; the contrast and sharpness of text is awesome. Plus it's on my desktop so she gets to run it with DVI which is the money.


1-22-06 [poker] - 1

1-22-06 [poker]

Another thing I'm working on is stack size theory in multis. One thing I've come to grasp is that in crucial pots, you need to think about how it affects your stack category. There's no need to take a big risk in order to just slightly change your stack size. Also, say you have a medium stack, you don't really want to tangle with a shorter stack if losing would make you a short stack, but winning wouldn't push you up much, you'd rather double up.

For example, say you have 2000 chips, and are around M = 10. Average is 3000 chips, so you're a bit low. If you double up, you get to 4000 and can be in control. Should you tangle with a guy with 1000 chips? No. If you lose to him, you go down to 1000 and are now a desperate shorty in big trouble. If you win, you only go to 3000 and are just average. That's not a good gamble. Much better to take the risk when you have a chance to double up.

Similar ideas apply when you're a big stack. As a big stack you can be perfectly happy to take any gamble that doesn't risk putting you below average. So if average is 3000 and you have 6000, take any gamble of 2500 chips or less.

Once the pot gets big compared to my stack, I want it bad, even if the odds are not ideal. Say the pot is 1k, and I have 1k left, so if we get all-in and I win we'll got to 3k. If I fold I go to 1k. Presumably that's near an inflection point, in which case I definitely want to gamble for that pot. The only way I wouldn't would be if average was way over 3k and it was near the bubble, or if average was way below 1k, so I could fold and still have a big stack.

An example of this is when the board comes with a 4-flush or 4-straight. If the pot is around 1k and you have 1k in your stack, push all in. Push whether you have the hand or not.

1-22-06 - 1


Everyone knows the Steelers want to score early, get the lead, and then grind you out. But the Broncos are actually the lords of that game. In fact, that game goes back to Bill Walsh at the 49ers, and of course Mike Shanahan in his offensive coordinator days at the 49ers. Walsh and then Shanahan were some of the first people to script the first offensive sequences, putting an emphasis on getting in and running down the field to get a quick lead, and then afterwards controlling the clock and running the ball. People think of the West Coast Offense as a dynamic passing attack, in reality it's a ball-control offensive which is designed to play with the lead; the short passes are a way to mix up the running game with reliable gainers and first downs, not risky big yardage plays.


1-21-06 [poker] - 4

1-21-06 [poker]

I'm thinking about leaving Party Poker. I actually like the site, but there are such great offers at other sites these days. Full Tilt looks pretty tasty. $600 bonus, and $300 bonus each month, plus I can get rake back, which for me would be around $1000/month. There are all these rumors of ways to get rake back on Party, but it's on the DL and I can't get the info. The big advantage of Party is that GoldBullion works on Party, and I have a big database of stats and fishies to hunt now. UltimateBet has good offers too.

1-21-06 [poker] - 3

1-21-06 [poker]

Talking about "chips" and "bankroll" and "buy-ins" is a poker player's trick to make it not seem like real money. People who play $100 NL talk about $100 as a "buy in", so you "win 4 buy-ins" or "lose 4 buy-ins". If you think about it as money, you get scared to lose it, which ruins your play.

When you tell someone that you won at poker, they assume it's because you got lucky. When you tell someone you lost, they assume it's because you made a mistake.

It's unbelievable how often people hit two outers on me. In related news, it's unbelievable how often people call me down when they're nearly drawing dead (such as, umm, I don't know, two outs!).

1-21-06 [poker] - 2

1-21-06 [poker]

Today I've learned two things :

1. Against fishies, implied odds trump immediate odds. Calling a pot size bet on the flop with a str8 or flush draw is really stupid by normal odds, but in a typical $100 NL pot, that pot size bet is maybe $5 , and you win $50 if you hit your draw. You would think it wouldn't be profitable to take these draws because they wouldn't pay you off, but my god, they do. It's important not to get carried away with this though, not everyone will let you draw cheap and pay off when you hit.

2. Pot control really is important. Even when you're really sure you're ahead with your one pair hand, it's still one pair, and you don't want to play a big pot. Try to size the pot based on the hand you have. Play big pots with big hands, small pots with weak hands. This just sounds way too simplistic, I should bet and suck in his chips when I'm ahead right? Over and over I find that pot control would've saved me a lot of chips.

1-21-06 [poker] - 1

1-21-06 [poker]

I've been trying to catch my favorite uber-fish today. He's been playing NL $400 and $600. I keep getting on the waiting list at his table, and by the time a seat opens, he's busted out (it's his seat that's open). Then he goes to another table, I find him and get on the list, and he busts again. I think he's dropped $2k or $3k today and I can't get on a damn table with him. The guy must be rich and like to play drunk or something.

Another nice one : Guy raises UTG to 4 BB. I call with 77 to hit the set. Flop 37T. He bets pot size, I raise to 3x pot size, he pushes all in, I call. He flips KK. Turn J, river K. I say "omg, unreal", he says "well, I had the best hand". These type of donks I hate the most, the guys who think they know how to play poker and that the "best hand" should win. -$100 on a two outer.

1-21-06 - 2


Cool places in San Luis Obispo you might not know about :

The rock bench. On the ridge above Lizzie Street (behind the high school, the same ridge my house is on), if you walk down the top of the ridge to the south (to the north is the lookout tower), you'll find a bench made of stones. Some citizen hiked up many times and carved many stones and assembled an amazing bench set into the hillside. It's perfect fit stone construction, no mortar (like the Incas).

"Cannibal's Camp". This is up on the same ridge, but on the other side, you reach it from the Reservoir Canyon hike. At the end of the trail is this weird bunch of art works constructed from scrap metal. There's a metal teepee to shelter in, a mailbox where you can leave notes for the cannibals, etc.

The colored cave at Montana de Oro. I wrote about this before. This one is very hard & illegal to get to, but definitely worth it. If you're small you can get under the fence; I set up ropes and sort of rapelled.

The bridge behind the Monday Club. This is pretty trivial, but it's right in town & I like it. The Monday Club is a cool building too, designed by the architect who did the Heart Castle.

1-21-06 - 1


Arg, my monitor showed up yesterday, but I was out and they didn't leave it. Now it's the freaking weekend and I can't get it until Monday. Lazy fucking UPS bums not working the weekend.


1-20-06 [poker] - 4

1-20-06 [poker]

My best play of the tournament :

Party Poker No-Limit Hold'em Tourney, Big Blind is t300 (9 handed)
stacks :
Hero (t2975)
MP2 (t12214)

Preflop: Hero is BB with 3h, 8h.
3 folds, MP2 calls t300, 4 folds, Hero checks.

Flop: (t750) 3c, 2s, Js (2 players)
Hero checks, MP2 checks.

Turn: (t750) 9h (2 players)
Hero bets t400, MP2 calls t400.

River: (t1550) 7h (2 players)
Hero checks, MP2 bets t1100, Hero calls t1100.

Final Pot: t3750

What does he have? (he had exactly what I thought he had)

Yesterday I was just a bit too tight/weak, and today I was a bit too loose/aggressive. It's so hard to hit that perfect middle ground of controlled aggression, and willingness to gamble when it's +EV, but not spewing.

1-20-06 [poker] - 3

1-20-06 [poker]

On the bubble in two different $33 tourneys at the same time. I have a big stack in both, about double average, and I'm just about to starting bullying and make a run at the final table. Instead I take awful bad beats in both at almost the same time. In one my KK runs into 22 preflop, and he sucks out, in another I flop two pair and get it in with a guy with one pair who spikes his kicker. Now I'm on a short stack in both during the bubble which just hugely sucks.

When I play tourneys now I use GoldBullion to datamine all the tables I'm not at. That way when I get moved to a new table, I already have stats, and it's not like I have to play with total unknowns.

M = 7-9 is the hardest region to play. Your stack is too big to just go pushing anything decent, but it's too short to really play a hand. If you make a 3x raise you're nearly pot stuck. I guess you can limp and still get away from a hand, but that's about it. This is usually the phase where I play tightest, just hoping for something good to push, partly because I just feel lost. Then when I get down to like M < 6 it becomes the wild push fest.

FUCK. I bubbled in both of them. How fucking gay. In one I was the actual bubble boy, I got 11th and 10 pay.

1-20-06 [poker] - 2

1-20-06 [poker]

My bad beat story of the day :

UTG limps, fold around, SB completes, I check in BB with K5. Flop is KK5 !! Jackpot! SB min bets, I just call, UTG calls. Turn is a 6. SB min bets, I raise to half pot, UTG reraises min. Double jackpot, he must have a king! SB calls his raise, I push all in, UTG calls, SB calls. SB shows a flush draw (that's why I pushed the turn, to make sure flush draws would stick around). UTG shows K6 !! He limped UTG with K6o , and spiked his 3-outer on the turn. DAMN!

1-20-06 [poker] - 1

1-20-06 [poker]

I've got a new concept on bluffing, driven from Pressure Points. I'll continue to make stabs and continuation, but I won't put in a big bluff unless I can make the pressure bet.

For example, say I have a str8 draw on the flop. I have position heads up in the pot. Villain leads into me for about half pot. Say the pot is 10 and he bet 5.

If stacks are very deep, like 200, I just call. The pot is now 20. If he leads again on the turn, I might raise, because now that raise will be a strong size and force him to make a tough decision. Say he bets 10 on the turn, I raise to 50. Now he's looking at putting in a lot of his stack and it might go all in on the river.

If stacks are more like 30, I can just push on the flop. If the stacks are like 60, I can raise to 25 on the flop. If the stacks are around 100, it's the wrong area to make a pressure bet, and probably just folding is best. Say you raise to 25 with stacks of 100. He calls and now leads the turn for 30. He's clearly committed now, and you can't apply any more pressure, in fact he's been allowed to apply the pressure.

1-20-06 - 3


Men's tennis would clearly be a much better sport (more fun to watch & play) if they slowed it down. This could be done easily by making the balls softer so they didn't come off the rackets so hot. Similarly, baseball would be much better without so many home runs, and so much reliance on the home run. It would force teams to manufacture runs and move runners rather than just slugging. Bigger ballparks would easily fix this (and ballparks used to be bigger, which is why Babe Ruth had so many triples). Neither one will ever happen because people are poopy-heads.

Ian led me to the fact that the USTA did propose using bigger balls to slow down the game. Of course the pros resisted, but why would any man decline bigger balls?

1-20-06 - 2


Can there be any doubt Serena Williams is on steroids? Look at her body, and look at her sister. There's no way a woman gets that big without some man juice. Serena could be a linebacker in the NFL. There's really no reason to watch women's tennis unless they're cute little things running around in short skirts. This girl Hantuchova is smoking hot.

1-20-06 - 1


The Broncos and Seahawks are both favorites by 3.5 ; I think that's pretty close to right, so I don't really see any good bets this weeekend. Broncos and Hawks should both win, and they'll be good games. I kind of like the Broncos to win the whole thing now. People talk about Denver like they haven't been good since John Elway. My god, Elway was a suck-fest worse than Plummer; in fact, they're very similar, mobile, prone to mistakes, inaccurate, reliant on the running game. The star of Denver is Shanahan, the best tactician in football.


1-19-06 [poker] - 1

1-19-06 [poker]

Just finished a $33 tournament, 250 people, I made the final table! Unfortunately I washed out in 7th place. At the end I was playing solid, maybe a bit too timid. I didn't make any major errors, so that was nice. Maybe I passed up some chances to attack pots and build my stack. I had some moves set up on various guys that I never got to spring. That's one thing about cash games, you get a lot more hands with the same people, so you can wait for the right chance to spring a big move, in tournaments, things change quickly and people bust or change stacks, so you don't have time to wait for your move.

With 8 players left, I had 25k chips, a bit below average. Blinds were 1500/3000, so I was a bit desperate (M = 5.5). I got 66 and open raised to 2.5BB. All fold. Next hand I got AQ and open raised to 2.5BB. All fold. Next hand I got AQ. Fuck, I've just raised two hands in a row, now I have AQ again. My first instinct was to just fold it because I knew my raise would get no respect. But AQ is too good, I can't fold it. So, I open raised to 2.5BB again. All fold to the BB who reraises about half my stack (we have almost identical stacks now). Fuck, I hate this. I've just raised three in a row ane he's playing back at me. I pushed, he called and flipped JJ. He won the race and I'm out.

Everyone at the final table was pretty fishy in different ways, except "athletenc87" and "don_m" , both pretty solid aggressive players.

I dunno, maybe the AQ hand that did me in was a mistake. The guy in the BB was a pretty solid value player, he probably wasn't fucking around. Some of the other funny guys I could easily put on messing around, but this guy was a card value player. So I have to put him on AK or a pair. In that case, I think I can fold even with the chunk of chips I already have in the pot. Even if I'm racing, that's a disaster here because I have much more equity than that. When I went out I had $827 worth of equity, and only made $300 for 7th place, so that sucks.

Oh, a funny thing happened after this hand. I had like 1000 chips left because I had the guy barely covered, and I was on the button so I could survive an orbit. Everyone else had over 10k chips and was in no danger of going out. If they were thinking at all they should have just folded/stolen until I went out, but instead two donks got in with marginal hands and one of them was out before my blind came around, so I moved up a free spot to 7th instead of 8th.


1-18-06 [poker] - 1

1-18-06 [poker]

For review, a "stop n go" is something like this : you're on a medium stack, perhaps M = 7 or so. The button raises, and you have a hand like 88. You could just push here, but you think he either has a pair or overs, and he's certainly calling preflop, so you have zero fold equity. Rather than just pushing and racing, you just call his raise, and push any flop. Now, consider some flops. Let's say an ace hits on the flop. He will now certainly call with an ace, and you're dead. He'll fold any hand without an ace, such as KQ, and also 99 and 77. So, pairs that beat you will fold, as will hands you're beating anyway. What if the flop is all low? He'll fold any high cards that missed (probably, unless your stack is uber low and he still has odds to call with good high cards), and call with any pair.

Consider a specific case. He raised to N and you have 3N chips. You just call and push the flop for the rest of your stack, which is now a pot size bet. He has two overs. He hits a pair on the flop about 31% of the time. He'll call with a pair and fold without. If you just pushed preflop, he'd call and you'd be a 55/45 favorite. Either way you're getting all your chips in, so we'll just look at your expected stack in either case.

Just push :
EV = 0.55 * 6N = 3.3N

Stop n Go :
if he hit a pair : you still win 8.8 % of the time :
EV = 0.088 * 6N = 0.53N
if he missed his pair, he folds and you win +N
EV = 4N

net EV = 0.31 * 0.53N + 0.69 * 4N = 2.92N

So, the Stop N Go is a -EV move. Also, in this form it's really irrelevant that you have a hand like 88, since really you're just purely bluffing.

I like the Stop N Go a lot better when you have AK, or AQ if you're desperate. In this case you put your opponent on a low pair. If you push, he'll call and you race as a dog. If you wait and see a flop, maybe you hit your overs, if not, you push anyway. If he has overs, he folds, and if he has a low pair, he still might fold if there are decent overcards, like QJ if you have AK, etc.


1-17-06 [poker] - 2

1-17-06 [poker]

Ugh. Just played the third heads up match with Dustin and he won, so he's now 3-0 in the best of seven and I'm in big trouble. Oddly enough I think it's the best heads up I've ever played, and had him all in several times as a dog. In the last two matches I've been pretty card-dead and Dustin was more aggressive, so I decided I'd retake the aggressor role and definitely succeeded. I think I won most of the hands where we both had marginal holdings except one. I was raising and reraising a lot more.

I used Doubleas' "pressure point" theory. Basically the idea is that when we have stacks of around 200k, if I bet around 50k I can apply maximum pressure without risking my stack. That bet says that he will have to get his whole stack in to show down the hand, and yet only risks part of my stack, and I could actually still fold if he pushes. If we both have marginal hands, if I bet say 10k, and he raises to 50k, I have to fold, but if it's the other way around, he has to fold.

Lots of interesting hands came up, it was a lot of fun. The first big hand went something like this. We both still had around 200, and blinds were small, maybe 1/2. Dustin raised to 6 on the button and I called in the BB with 89. Flop was 27T or something like that. I checked planning to raise, but Dustin checked behind. Turn was an 8. Now I had a pair + open ender. I led out for 8 into the 12 pot. Dustin raised to 24. I reraised to 75. Dustin folded and showed QJ for a gutshot.

I had the chip lead almost the whole rest of the match. Another key hand was similar. I think the blinds were 3/6 at this point. I raised on the button to 18 with 45s. Dustin called in the BB. Flop was K42, so I had middle pair. I thought I'd get max value by inducing a bluff. Flop went check check. Here it's important to know that on a previous hand, I'd done this exact thing with a K where I'd quickly checked on the button with top pair to trap him on the turn. Turn as a 3. I now had pair + str8draw. Dustin led at the pot for 30 (pot was 36). Dustin only had like 70 chips behind at this point, so I pushed all in. Dustin folded and showed A4. He actually had the better pair of 4's + a gutshot.

Another hand I don't remember quite right but was key. Dustin was pretty short stacked. I was on the button and I think I came in for a raise with J7 ? Flop was something like 7TK. Dustin didn't have much left, but the flop went check-check I think. Turn was a J. I now had two pair. Dustin pushed all-in. His bet was just a little over pot size, the pot was like 48 and he pushed for 60 or so. I called, and he showed 9T, so he had a pair + a double gutter. Of course his pair was no good, so he just had 8 outs. He hit the Q on the river and doubled up.

Yet another interesting hand. Again Dustin was very short, near all-in stack size. I think he had like 130 and the blinds were 5/10. I raised on the button to 30 with some junk, I think it was 79s. Dustin just called in the BB. This was very weird because he was so short, I thought for sure he was in fold or push mode. Flop was AJ8 with two hearts. Dustin checked. Normally I'd continuation bet here, but I was worried about his call preflop, I thought he probably had an ace or a pocket pair and wouldn't fold here. I checked behind. Turn was another jack. check-check. River was a 8 ! The board was AJJ88 and there's now a really good chance it's a split pot! Dustin pushed all in for 100 chips. The pot was 70 before he pushed. I thought there was a really good chance it was a split, but I have to call 100 to win 35, which sucks. The chance of a split pot against random cards there is 70%, so if I put him on random cards, it's a slightly -EV call. If I bias that towards a slight chance he was trapping, I have to fold there. So Dustin got the 70 and was back to 170. I think it's a good fold by me on the river even though it would have been a split. I love his push there. The crappy thing is if I would've just bet the flop I probably would've won the pot. Dustin afterward admitted he had K5 here. It's not really remarkable that he had no piece of it; he has to have no part of the board more than 75% of the time for me to call there. The surprising thing to me about that is that he just called in the BB preflop with that hand. This is definitely one of those cases where I think if I was better at extracting live information from tells and table talk I could have played the hand better.

Even after that I had a good chip lead and was chopping away at him. He'd gotten into all in mode and I hadn't caught him yet, every time he pushed I had junk and had to fold. Then this hand came up : Dustin limped on the button. Blinds were 6/12 I think. I raised 25 more from the BB with A8s. Dustin pushed all-in, about 60 more. The pot was like 74 and it was 60 more, so I have to call with almost any two, the fact that I have A8 is just a bonus. I called and he flipped TJo. I'm about 60/40 to win right here, but he spiked a J to double up again and take a 3:2 chip lead.

The last hand was sucky. Dustin now had the 3:2 chip lead, blinds were 6/12, so my M was only 9 and I'm close to all-in mode. I raised on the button with K8s to 36. Dustin just called in the BB. Flop was A42. Dustin checked. I figured any hand without an ace would fold here, so I pushed, for about 100 into the 72 pot. Dustin called and showed A9. I'd been worried about him pulling that trap move with the ace all day. Earlier when the ace flopped I didn't bet it and he took the split pot, and now when I did bet was the time he was trapping. If I had any more chips I could've played this hand better, but as it was I didn't have much room to maneuver.

On the plus side, there were lots of very interesting hands, and I thought I played really well almost the whole time, so that was fun. On the minus side, I lost every all-in where I was a nice favorite. I'd already gone -$300 this morning on rotten variance (set cracked by flush draw, shit like that). Some days you just can't win. You can read Dustin's version of some of the hands at The Chapel Perilous .

1-17-06 [poker] - 1

1-17-06 [poker]

Here's a funny one I ran into today. Say you have AQs and the board is TJ5 with two of your suit. You have overs + a straight draw + a flush draw. That's a nice hand. What would you rather be up against, AJo (top pair) or AKo (no pair) ? The answer is AJo. Against AJ you are a 55/45 favorite. Against AK you are a 45/55 dog !


1-16-06 [poker] - 1

1-16-06 [poker]

I posted a long thing on my flameout of the 99-person $44 tourney at 2+2 . I don't think any of the hands are big mistakes, maybe there's a few marginal mistakes in there.


1-15-06 [poker] - 6

1-15-06 [poker]

OMG. Out 36th on this hand :

PartyPoker, Big Blind is t1500 (9 handed) [url=http://www.pregopoker.com/hhconv/convert]Converter on pregopoker.com[/url]

UTG (t21622)
UTG+1 (t19793)
MP1 (t23560)
MP2 (t4689)
MP3 (t19194)
CO (t12226)
Button (t25357)
SB (t25061)
Hero (t15508)

[b]Preflop:[/b] Hero is in BB with 3:diamond: J:diamond:
[color:gray]UTG folds[/color], [color:gray]UTG+1 folds[/color], [color:gray]MP1 folds[/color], [color:gray]MP2 folds[/color], [color:gray]MP3 folds[/color], [color:gray]CO folds[/color], [color:gray]Button folds[/color], [color:red]SB raises to t3000[/color], Hero calls t1500

[b]Flop:[/b] (t6750) 5:club: 3:club: Q:diamond: (2 players)
[color:red]SB bets t3500[/color], [color:red]Hero raises to t12508[/color], SB calls t9008

[b]Turn:[/b] (t31766) 5:club: 3:club: Q:diamond: 8:diamond: (2 players)

[b]River:[/b] (t31766) 5:club: 3:club: Q:diamond: 8:diamond: 9:club: (2 players)

Hero has a pair of 3's
SB has a flush

I can't believe I pushed bottom pair. FUCK. It's a correct call by him, even though I am a nice favorite to win. I should've just folded preflop. Once again I probably could have made 10th just playing tight/solid, and instead I chose to get over-aggro and gamble and got busted (the good money starts at 10th). That club popping out on the river haunts me.

On the plus side I played really great up to this point. I got a big stack early by getting lucky (hit a set), and then I never played a race after that. I just chipped away with raises and reraises, got in a few times against short stacks as a big favorite, and grew my stack from 6k to 20k chips without ever taking a big risk. I took a few hard beats to get down to 15k which was when the horrible J3 hand happened.

On the minus side, as I've said before, multi-tables are way -EV unless you play well at the end. You can play great early and make the money frequently, and it's still hugely -EV because all the cash is in the top few. If you can't play well at the end to make that jump from 20th to 2nd place, you shouldn't play at all. It seems this is still the spot I'm in, unfortunately.

1-15-06 [poker] - 5

1-15-06 [poker]

I'm out of two of the three $44's. In the 99 player one I made 22nd place (10 pay). In the 250 player I made 64th (30 pay). I'm still alive in the 865 player event, just made the money with 90 players left, and I have a nice stack (double average). In both of the other two I was too aggressive near the end and blew off my stack. I'll review the plays in detail later, right now it's back to business.

1-15-06 [poker] - 4

1-15-06 [poker]

It's been a day of many multis. I played another $33 and made it near the bubble, then had a hand where a few guys limped, I was in the big blind with 97 and checked. Flop was K97 - I made bottom two pair. The small blind bet out, and I raised all in. All fold back to the small blind who calls with K7 and I bust out. Played an $11 with a bazillion people in it. I didn't play it well; people play really nutty in the $11's and I should've played tighter. I made a few strong moves and got called with crazy shit that beat me; I don't blame them, it's my error, I should only be playing JJ-AA and AK in the early levels of these things. I'm now starting on playing all three $44 tournaments that start right now, so we'll see how that goes.

1-15-06 [poker] - 3

1-15-06 [poker]

Just finished a 20+2 multi table on Party. 1037 players, I made 52nd. On the last hand I pushed AQ and ran into JJ and he won the race. I'm torn about whether pushing AQ was a good play or not. I certainly could have cashed higher if I'd tightened up even more, but my goal is a high place. I'm leaning towards it being a bad play, I probably should have just folded. Dammit, I definitely should have folded. I had an average stack and could've gotten into better spots againts the short stacks and blinds. My cash EV at the time was around $300, so to make only $70 by losing there is pretty rotten.

This was the hand :

PartyPoker, Big Blind is t1500 (9 handed) 

UTG (t11870)
UTG+1 (t54178)
MP1 (t27810)
MP2 (t11239)
MP3 (t17172)
CO (t4920)
Hero (t16672)
SB (t17994)
BB (t72873)

Preflop: Hero is in Button with AQo
UTG folds
UTG+1 raises to t4500
folds to the button
Hero (button) pushes all in
blinds fold
UTG+1 calls

My thinking at the time was that he could be open raising a lot of things that he'd fold to avoid a big confrontation, hands like low pairs. On the other hand he could have AK or QQ+ and I'd be fucked. This is a clear fold for me, I'm a donkey. I was anxious for a spot to make an aggressive push and build my stack, and this was not it.

1-15-06 [poker] - 2

1-15-06 [poker]

Variance has been an absolute bitch to me lately. Back when I started playing poker in the home game here, we'd be shocked by a "bad beat" if like two guys both had top pair and one had a better kicker; Mark Lee would say "unbelievable". Nowadays it's pretty common for me to make a full house and run into the higher house (there's still no way I'm folding the lower house with only one pair on the board). I ran 88 into K4 on a KK84 board. In the last two days I'm about -$400 on rotten variance and about -$100 on mistakes.

1-15-06 [poker] - 1

1-15-06 [poker]

I hear the poker videos at Card Runners are really good. They're a bunch of young guys who play online and kick ass. I don't want to pay for it, though, so if anybody wants to email me with something, that would be nice.

1-15-06 - 5


Here's a proposal for a new way to do betting odds. In simple win/loss bets, you can either bet on side A or side B. You can put whatever amount of money you want on each side. By putting money on a side, you are buying shares in that side equal to the % of the total amount of money put on that side. When the outcome is determined, the winning side gets all the money, and it is split based on the % of money put up.

For example, pretend this was used on the Colts-Steelers game. Lots of people bet, and when you go to the action there's $1000 on the Colts and $500 on the Steelers. You bet $5 on the Steelers. Now the Steelers win, so they get the full $1505 pot. You get 5/505 of that = $14.9. Basically the odds are set by the amount bet on each side. This is an auto-equalizing system where if there is any imbalance, the bettors will fix it by betting on the more favorable option.

This is particularly nice in multiway action, for example betting on the team to win the superbowl. Rather than giving odds for each team, the bettor can simply put their money on the team they like to win. The odds are set automatically based on where the money goes.

One problem with this system is that it's susceptible to manipulation. Various things could be done to prevent that. The simplest would be to make the betting blind. You simply get to pick one side and don't get to see how much money is placed on each side.

Clearly betting N on one side should be no different than betting N/2 twice. One way to do this is for the odds of each bet to be set based on the final amount in each pot. If you put in a big bet at the last minute, it hurts your odds, so that's no exploit. Another interesting way is for bets to be added one dollar at a time, with each dollar going it at the odds for that dollar. So, when I bet $5 on the Steelers in the example above, really I'd get $1 at 1000:501 and $1 at 1000:502 and $1 at 1000:503 etc. This is actually more favorable for the bettor than getting just the final odds.

1-15-06 - 4


Well, the Steelers were a good bet obviously. My picks to win went 3-1. My picks to bet were 2 for 2 (bet Broncos and Panthers). Damn, that was a missed opportunity. I'll update the picks for next week in a few days. I still think the AFC is a favorite to win the superbowl. The Broncos and the Steelers are the two most balanced teams in the NFL. There's a lot of nonsense about defense winning championships. The truth is *balance* wins. If you look at the great championship teams of all time - the 80's 49ers, the 90's Cowboys, the 00's Patriots, the thing they all have is balance. They have a rushing attack, passing, and great defense. The Seahawks should be able to handle the Panthers, assuming they're healthy, which is a bit of a question mark. Good for Seattle finally getting some wins!

1-15-06 - 3


There's a cool interactive computer graphics project called CANVAS which is sort of like a fancy public shadow garden type of thing. They project video onto multiple screens that you stand in and interact with. I can't really figure out the details because their web site is horrifically unclear and academicy. "It's a paradigm-changing multi-dimensional interactive visual simulated environment". Umm, you mean like some graphics projected on a screen? Yes, I know you get more grant money if you make it sound high-fallutin'.

1-15-06 - 2


The new Ford Mustang commercial is really hillarious. Try to watch it, then think of this slightly less veiled replacement voice over :

The Ford GT - a pretty awesome car, but we couldn't find any category where it's number one, so we'll just say it's the most exciting. But you poor slobs can't afford one, so settle for a Mustang! Mustang : it kind of looks like a GT if they're painted the same and you squint. Ford : at least we're not GM.

1-15-06 - 1


The End of War has come because you can no longer seize prosperity. In medieval times, a well-armed lord could look upon a prosperous neighbor with weak defenses and simply decide to conquer it, thus taking the prosperity for himself. The mechanisms for producing prosperity were easily transferrable. The same was true in recent Imperial times - natural resources and cheap labor could be easily conquered and extracted. But in the End of War prosperity comes from the population and the socio-economic structures. These engines of wealth cannot easily be conquered and transferred, for the heavy boot of conquest crushes them like blades of grass underfoot. Thus North Korea, with a mighty military and weak economy, can look down at South Korea and know that even if it did invade and conquer, it would not have the prosperity and wealth that South Korea has now, because the human system that makes South Korea successful would be destroyed. This is the End of War.


1-14-06 [poker] - 2

1-14-06 [poker]

Woot! I've been chasing this one uber-fish for weeks and have not been able to "hook" him. Today I finally got him. I chased him up to the $400 NL tables, and I caught the cards I needed. One set with 77, and one pair of kings in the hole = + 2 stacks for +$800.

1-14-06 [poker] - 1

1-14-06 [poker]

A lot of peope say not to play a rebuy tournament unless you're planning on rebuying. That's a lot of nonsense. Because other players play so nutty in rebuy tourneys, you get very good value on your buy-in just by playing tight. If you lose, you quit and don't rebuy. Rebuying is +EV just like the original buy in, though I would argue that it's actually less +EV because the blinds are now bigger and you have less chance to wait for good hands, and also some of the nutty fish may have washed out several buy ins and given up by that point. If you're tight+weak you'll get destroyed at these things, but if you're just very tight preflop and basically try to get all in with any decent flop, you get good value.

The nutters certainly come out to play tournaments on Saturday. I've got my money in way the best against nutty nutty calls in two tournaments, and of course the nutters won. I won't bore you with the details of the bad beat stories, but my god, my god man, do these people even know how to spell poker?

Back on the rebuy question - consider two strategies. The tighter strategy you cash much more often, but looser way has a much higher chance of cashing well. Let's say the tight way you bust out 90% of the time, and cash 10% of the time. When you cash, you make 15 buyins on average, so your EV is 1.5 buyins. The looser way, you bust out 95% of the time and cash 5% of the time, but when you cash you make 30 buyins, so your EV is 1.5 buyins. But what if you can rebuy when you bust? We'll assume that you can rebuy infinitely - any time you bust you rebuy. Thus your EV when you bust is the same as an EV of buying in all over again. This is slightly wrong in various ways, but close enough. It sets up a recurrence relation for EV, like :

tighter :
EV = -1 + 0.1 * 15 + 0.9 * EV
0.1 * EV = -1 + 0.1 * 15
EV = -1/0.1 + 15 = 5

looser :
EV = -1 + 0.05 * 30 + 0.95 * EV
0.05 * EV = -1 + 0.05 * 30
EV = -1/0.05 + 30 = 10
So clearly with rebuys the looser/gambling style is much better.


1-13-06 [poker] - 2

1-13-06 [poker]

I changed my Party name so it's not so obviously me. Also, it's more appropriate and has some of that aspect of perhaps messing with people's heads. If you want to search for me, ask and I'll tell you my new name.

1-13-06 [poker] - 1

1-13-06 [poker]

I played my heat in the Grand Tournament live game last night ($50 buy in). The structure for this was unusual in that almost all the money went to 1st place, so there was very little value in just making the money, it was big stack or bust. A lot of interesting hands came up for me, I'll write up a few.

I started out playing super tight at the low blinds (you start with 125 BB's), just trying to hit something big so I could bust someone. I never hit a good hand, unfortunately, but tried a few unsuccesful bluffs.

The first was against Pete. Blinds were 200/400 , folded to Pete on the button who made it 1200, standard Button steal size. I called in the SB with A8s. This is a little loose, but I wanted to hit my suits or a two pair, if an ace hit I wouldn't want to play a big pot. Flop came 89J with two spades. Now I have bottom pair, and he was just on a button raise, so I thought I'd stab and see if he liked his hand. I bet about 2/3 pot, he went into a big think routine and eventually called. I thought he might have overs or a flush draw. Turn was another 9. I bet 2/3 pot. This time he went into a really big think. Now I was pretty sure he had a good hand and the think was a bunch of Hollywood. River was a Q, which is a horrible card for me in any case. The straight hit, and if he just had some overs like KQ they hit. I checked and he pushed all in. He said something funny like "you're just checking to trap me, aren't you? Oh well, all in". That cost me a chunk.

Another bluff went bad against Jesse, and I picked up some pots with aggression, then the next big hand came up against Dustin. Blinds were now 400/800 I think, and I was down below average. Folded to me on the button, and I looked down at 54s. I know Dustin likes to defend his blind, so I thought for a second about folding, but figured the implied odds were good if I could flop something. So I made a standard raise, 2400 to go, and Dustin just called in the BB. Flop was 358 I think, rainbow. A very nice flop for me, I hit a pair and it's all low, so high cards whiffed. Dustin checked and I bet 3000. Dustin quickly min raised to 6000. That looked to me like he wanted to see where I was at, I'm sure he put me just on button steal aggression. I didn't want to see any more cards and have to play a tricky situation, so I pushed all in and took the pot.

I was back to my starting stack. Blinds went up and we got into mostly raising and folding preflop. I pulled a resteal, and Eric pulled a resteal on me. Then came my disaster hand. I got AJs on the button, a very nice hand for the button. I open raised to 3x as usual. I think blinds were 600/1200 now, so it was 3500 to go. Eric reraised allin, about 20k. He had been very aggressive all night, and had just pulled a similar reraise on me recently, with I don't know what. I pretty quickly called, and he showed AKs, which held up. This was a huge mistake, calling with AJ. It's the worst hand I would've considered calling with, but obviously he was on a tighter range for that move than I thought. At best I was racing and I didn't need to race my stack at that point. That sent me down to desperate short stack land.

Short stack land wasn't bad. I think I actually played one of my best short stack games ever. I was very aggressive in good spots. I was just about breaking even then got lucky enough to get AA, and pushed just like I was pushing my steals. I then had enough chips to make some resteals, allin from the blinds against late position raisers. I made it back to almost 20k, then got TT and ran it into KK. Back to a short stack! I ran it up again with steals and resteals, and made it close to 20k again. The last hand I got Q9s and button raised, flopped top pair Q and got all in against QJ. Game over.

After the AJ hand I was in funk cuz I was disgusted with myself for calling there. The cards just didn't want to go my way, and the bluffs all went wrong.

addendum 1-14 : thinking about the Q9 hand after the fact, I don't think I did anything horrible in that hand, but I do think I could have made a much better play - just folding preflop. I had been stealing like crazy, and had just managed top build myself back to a reasonable stack. It would have been a great time to switch gears back to tight/solid mode and hope to get a big hand, which would probably pay off since I'd been stealing so much.

1-13-06 - 1


My Planar LCD has always had this odd problem where it would get fuzzy in spots, little vertical bands. They would usually go away, but it's always annoyed me. Also, it never happened with a digital signal, just with the stupid analog signal. Anyway, I finally found out how to fix it. You just have to run the auto-adjust whenever it happens, and it fixes itself. I guess something gets out of phase with the analog signal.


1-12-06 [poker] - 2

1-12-06 [poker]

Top X most hated things people say on the "2+2" boards :
  • "Call and Play Poker on the turn/river". Play Poker? WTF !? Isn't that what I was asking how to do? This is most hillarious when calling puts 80% of your chips in the pot, and you can hardly "play poker" on later streets.

  • "You can find a better place to get your chips in the middle". Umm, yeah, sure, like when I have the stone cold nuts, and he's betting into me? That would be better right? This is a cash game, not a tournament, so if I have an edge on this hand I want to play it, I don't want to wait for a "better spot". I'll get my chips in the better spot too.

  • "Raise more preflop. Bet more on the flop." Okay, this is often the right advice, but people just spout it mechanically like somehow betting more will make everything alright, even though it reduces the chance of getting called by worse hands and gets you more pot-stuck and doesn't take into account the details of the situation.

  • "If you would've bet more, you'd be pot committed and it would be easy to call when he raises." (said when you're betting with like a flush draw). Umm, good advice, pot-commit yourself when you're behind so that you can call off the rest of your stack "easily".

  • "I have KK preflop, he reraised, should I fold?".

  • "I flopped quads and slowplayed it, now I'm scared of the str8flush on the river; should I fold?". Umm, no.

1-12-06 [poker] - 1

1-12-06 [poker]

Last night I mainly played two tables - one $400 NL and one $50 NL. I made a nice profit at $400 and felt like I had total control of the table. I lost my stack (with the set of aces) at the $50 table and felt like I was struggling. Today I went back and reviewed all the hands I played at both tables, and was surprised to find my feelings at the time were way off.

At the $400 table, everyone was very weak/tight. I knew that and was taking down more flops than they, but I was hardly "dominating". A very aggressive LAG style would have been ideal there. I played solid, but not amazing.

At the $50 table, everyone was very loose, and I felt like I couldn't control the table with preflop raises and continuation bets. On review, I saw I was actually playing a good solid game for that table texture. I got good hands and bet them, they paid to chase. There was a guy I thought was totally taking advantage of me being tight, but upon review I saw that was not the case at all, he was betting in reasonable spots and I was folding weak hands.


1-11-06 [poker] - 3

1-11-06 [poker]

Fuck. Twice tonight I flopped top set. First time I played fast, just led out with a bet, and the guy folded. The next time I slow played, checked the flop and bet the turn. Well, the guy hit his gutshot on the turn and stacked me. +$10 on first hand -$100 on second hand. Top set sucks. The first hand was not a good flop to slow play, J98, I had JJ, there's a nasty draw there. The second flop looked pretty bland - AK3 rainbow, I had AA, not much of a draw for me to worry about, but there's almost always a gutshot on any flop.

Actually, that's interesting - how many flops have no one card straight draws? 38K,27K. Is that it? Any flop with an ace has a straight draw. (this assuming no pair or trips on the flop, three different ranks)

1-11-06 [poker] - 2

1-11-06 [poker]

Played another match in the heads up series with Dustin. This one just sucked, I never got anything to play with, not even any decent semi-bluff draws or anything like that. The only way I could have won would have been making a lot of big all-out bluffs with air. I did make correct call-downs with marginal hands in a few spots, though one was a split. Dustin was also more aggressive; he was totally holding over me, but also semibluffed more in position, etc.

There was only one big hand early. I open raised with 99 on the button. Dustin called in the BB. After this action we can both have a lot of things. The flop came AAx. Dustin checked. I figured I was likely best, but thought the best way to get action would be for him to bet into me. He might have an ace, but he also might bet with a good king high, or if he pairs some of the other junk on the board, he might bet that. So, I checked. Turn was another low rag (I think it was a 7), and Dustin bet about half the pot. I called, also figuring if I had the A I'd probably just call there. River was another blank and Dustin bet about half pot again. I called and Dustin showed KK to win the pot. This gave him about a 3:2 chip lead which he held the whole time.

The last hand Dustin had me stacked about 3:1 , so with one double up we'd be even again. The blinds were big and I'd been in all-in mode for a while. I'd been pushing in with any pair, any ace high, things like that. As of yet, we hadn't had a confrontation where we both had hands, and I'd been able to build my stack back a little bit by pushing more often. On the button I got KK and pushed all in like I was doing every other hand. Dustin called with A7 (a correct call given the stacks and how often I pushed), spiked an A to win.

I don't feel like there's much else I could have done in that match other than maybe try running a few big bluffs. So now I'm down 2-0 and have a big hole to climb out of.

1-11-06 [poker] - 1

1-11-06 [poker]

Ugh. Twice in the last two days I've had AK and hit trip K's on the flop. Both times I got all-in. One time the guy had the house on the flop (he had KJ, KKJ flop, and he was crazy/loose), the other time the guy had lower trips and spiked the house on the river (he had K6 !). -$200.

The only good hand I've had was 55 which hit a set, but it was on a 5678 board. Turned out he had 67 for two pair, and I won about half his stack. It's correct to bet small here, not necessarilly because I'm afraid of the straight, but because he is; if I bet big I'd just scare him off. The only exception is in some cases if I just pushed with a ridiculous overbet, he might call with his two pair trying to pick off a bluff or bust an overpair.

My bankroll's been almost perfectly flat for a whole week now. I've taken a lot of rotten beats in that time, so I guess I should be happy it's just flat.

1-11-06 - 1


Well, Stephen Colbert really did spawn this strange news story about truthiness . What did we really learn from this? Linguists are a bunch of flaming idiots. The guy defines "truthiness" as "truthy not facty".


1-10-06 [poker] - 3

1-10-06 [poker]

My basic play and adaptation. In full ring, start in "standard mode". This is tight/aggressive, playing only good cards (and good implied odds hands), pushing hard when you're ahead and folding when you think you're behind.

What if you're not getting enough action on your good hands? (people always fold when you bet strong). This usually only happens when you're not getting many good hands so you're only rarely showing strength. In this case, open up a bit, starting raising more hands preflop and betting continuation to chop down little pots. Probably this will make people look you up more, so you can switch back to standard mode.

What if people start raising you too much? eg. they notice that you'll bet strong, but if they reraise you'll usually fold. Don't stop raising preflop and betting continuation, but make sure you aren't betting continuation too often with air. Now you'll have to go to felt with slightly weaker hands, like TPTK (top pair top kicker), and play back strong at these people. Hopefully they'll back down if you can bust them, then you go back to standard mode.

1-10-06 [poker] - 2

1-10-06 [poker]

Donked it up in a big multi today. Back to my old flaws - I played well for 3 hours, then just got bored and impatient and blew off my stack close to the bubble. What a waste!

On the plus side, I made a set-over-set in the full ring, so that cancels the time I got over-setted a few days ago. Fortunately I didn't get cute and just win a small pot. It's a major disaster if you don't win a whole stack when you have the higher set in a set-over-set confrontation, which can happen if you try to "slow play" or "trap" or some other donk move.

1-10-06 [poker] - 1

1-10-06 [poker]

There's this wonderful magic that happens if you get a whole bunch of good hands in a row, and just bet them all strongly. People just can't believe you actually have a hand all those times, and they start looking you up. So you get paid, not just because of the good hands, but because they create the image that you're bluffing. The key here is that you bet them strongly and people fold before showdown, so they don't see your goods.

1-10-06 - 2


It is by will alone I set my mind in stupor
It is by the juice of vino that
The thoughts acquire haze
The speech becomes slurred
The slur becomes a warning
It is by will alone I set my mind in stupor

1-10-06 - 1


Broncos v. Pats (Vegas line is Broncos by 3) : the Broncos look very good. The key for the Pats is to try to take away the powerfull Broncos rushing attack and make Jake Plummer throw to beat you. Then you have to hope he makes some mistakes and you get some picks. I pick the Broncos to win. I wouldn't bet against that spread, it's about right. Denver's actually a great all-around team, I think they're under-rated. If they face the Colts in the championship game, they might be a good bet.

Steelers v. Colts (Vegas line is Colts by 9.5) : clearly the Colts are awesome, but they have a lot of question marks with their long layoff, and I still say their defense is susceptible to a strong rushing team, like the Steelers. The Steelers key to winning is just to run, run, run, even if they get behind they have to stick with it. Of course their defense has to be strong and keep the game close so that they can play a grind it out game. The Colts win if the score is high, I think the Steelers can win if they keep it a low scoring battle. I pick the Colts to win. I bet the Steelers against that spread! I'll always bet against a 9.5 spread, because if the Colts get up that far, they might take it easy.

Redskins v. Seahawks (Vegas line is Seahawks by 9) : the Skins defense is better, but the Hawks win this game easily. Of course pick the hawks to win. I kind of like the skins to beat that spread, but can't bet them with with the question marks from Portis and the moron who is Gibbs.

Panthers v. Bears (Vegas line is Bears by 3) : the suck-fest. This is a very even match up. I'm not sure who to pick to win, but with that spread I bet the Panthers.

Superbowl : Colts v. Seahawks, Colts win. Current Vegas odds for Colts to win the superbowl is 2:1 !! That's not very favorable for anyone betting the Colts.


1-9-06 [poker] - 2

1-9-06 [poker]

Played my first big tournament in a while, a $109 multi-table. 267 players, I made 15th place for $226. It sucks to get so close and not make the final table. All the money is in the top 10 (first place was $7000). On my last hand I got in with a PP racing and missed it. On the plus side, I was very short stacked early and still managed to get that deep. You start with 1000 in chips, and I went down to 300 almost right away on some tough hands, and fought my way back to above average chips. I made a few really good plays, but mostly just played good patient value poker.

I think maybe the last hand I should've folded. I was in the small blind with 33. A loose nutter limped in late position. That means he had ass. If figured if I pushed, the BB would probably fold (he was tight), and the loose guys might fold, but more likely call with overs. So I'm racing and getting the BB and my SB for free value, which is nice. But is it worth risking getting knocked out?

Let's do the tournament equity math. I had 6432 chips before I paid my SB, average was 17800, blinds were 500/1000, so my M was around 4. I'm in bad shape, but I still have $1100 in tournament equity at that point!! If I get knocked out, I get $226 (all places up to 10th pay the same).

If I just fold in the hand, my equity goes down to $1000, that's -$100 EV !. If I win the race my equity goes to $2379. Oo, that's nice actually. I was 52% to win, so the EV of racing is 0.52*2379 + 0.48*226 = $1345. So, actually the race was a good value. Racing instead of just folding is a +$345 value decision. Damn, it sure doesn't feel like I got $345!!

As a rule of thumb, I can see that racing here was beneficial because the payout structure up to 9th place was flat, so creeping up places is not worth anything, and most of the money is in the top two, so I really want to make a run at a high place. In this kind of structure real money value is pretty close to chip value, so a move that's +EV in chips is +EV in real money. It's possible I could have tight-assed my way up a bit more, but I'm happy to have raced for the chance of getting a stack and taking a high place.

1-9-06 [poker] - 1

1-9-06 [poker]

The cash game was a whore to me this morning. My set runs into a higher set, my AA cracked by a set, my flush draw semibluff beat by a lower flush that called and hit his pair! My two pair beat by top pair that trips up after we get the money in. My god, the poker gods are slapping me around like an effeminate boy in prison.


1-8-06 [poker] - 1

1-8-06 [poker]

Poker profiles : Tight Stupid. There's a very common type of player at the NL cash game. He thinks he's being patient and tight, he thinks he's making money off the players who are too loose and will pay off his good hands. The "Tight Stupid" player can be Tight+Weak or Tight+Aggressive, but usually the former. Basically you want to just avoid them when they show real strength, they play so few hands you can just take their blinds and avoid hands where they come in for a raise. You can also take the flop from them. They don't want to play marginal situations, so you can often bet the flop or raise their continuation and take a nice little pot from them.

The thing that really makes them Tight Stupid, however, is that when they do play a pot, they're over-attached to their hand and will make big mistakes. They think they play so few hands that when they get AA or KK they need to make money. They also assume that everyone else is playing junk all the time, because everyone else isn't "solid" like them. This means that if they raise or reraise preflop, you can call with any pair hoping to spike a set. They will eagerly give you their whole stack when you have a set and they have an overpair. Generally implied odds are very good against the Tight Stupid player. They will play aggressive at the wrong times (when they're beat) and weak at the wrong times (when you steal flops from them).

When I'm playing badly, this is me.


1-7-06 - 1


There should be a "AAA" for bikes. You pay $50/year or so, and if you have bike problems out on the road, you can call on your cell phone, they'll drive out with a car full of tools and gear and help you fix your bike, repair flats, broken chains, that kind of thing. If the problem is too bad to fix on the road, they'll drive you home, or to the local bike shop. The economic model of these services is based on having lots of members that never use it, not sure if that would work, the real AAA does so well because it's a house hold name and so many people sign up.


1-6-06 [poker] - 2

1-6-06 [poker]

I started another heads up best of seven series with Dustin. We played the first game today. We were sparring cautiously early, no big hands, then this hand came up :

Blinds were 4000/8000. We were pretty close to even with about 200k chips each, so M = 17, I guess I had a small chip lead going into the hand. Dustin limped the button, which is pretty rare. I checked. Flop was K84, with two hearts. I held J4, so I had bottom pair, I figured I was probably ahead, but I didn't want to just lead the whole way. I checked it, and he bet 8000. That's a half pot, kind of small bet. Now I'm pretty sure I'm good, so I raised it to 30000. Dustin pretty quickly called. Turn was an A. Now, I'm not scared of the A or K, I think I'm likely good still, he probably has a flush draw or something like that. I check. Dustin bets 50k. Now the pot and bets are so big it's all in or nothing. I really think I'm ahead! The pot is 76k before Dustin bet, so if I win this pot I'm taking a huge chip lead and probably winning the whole thing. I really don't think he has an A or K since he just limped preflop (though I was aware he could haved limped something good to trap me). He might have an 8. More likely I think he has something like a flush draw. I thought for a really long time here and eventually folded. I think if I pushed quickly, or maybe just led the turn, he would have folded an 8, and I would have won the pot. In any case I don't like how I played the hand. At first I was thinking the fast that I have a 4 is irrelevant, that if I push it's basically a pure bluff, but that's not quite true. He could have something like two hearts in the 9-Q range which would be a very good hand and probably call the all in, and my 4s could actually hold up and be best then. (turns out he had 86 ; my guess of an 8 was right and I probably would have won the hand by pushing the turn, which was my gut feeling).

After sparring a bit more we wound up with nearly identical stacks and got all in with A7 against 55. I had the A7 and lost the race. I hate getting in my money like that, but what are you gonna do? Dustin leads 1-0.

1-6-06 [poker] - 1

1-6-06 [poker]

I continue to learn about the surprisingly large poker software community.

The back bone of most poker software is Poker Tracker . Poker Tracker stores lots of stats in an SQL database, and people have lots of scripts and side apps that intreface with that. For example, there are heads up displays like Game Time Plus , and Poker Ace HUD . There are also data miners like PartyMine . There are graphics apps to draw data from your Poker Tracker database, like Poker Patterns . There are many article on how to use Poker Tracker, for example at Bet the Pot .

It's sort of scary to think of all the semipros online who are using this mass of sophisticated software to aid their play. The big news in this community is PartyPoker's upcoming new software, which is partly intended to give robots and data miners a tougher time. We'll see...

1-6-06 - 3


My "emerging markets" fund took a bit of a dive last month. I'm pretty sure that's mainly because of the strengthening of the dollar. If the dollar's going to get much stronger I need to cash out of overseas investments and get all my assets back in USD. This week the dollar went down again, so god knows what's happening with all that.

1-6-06 - 2


Wow, you should TiVo "Trapped in the Closet". It's so fucking hillarious, it's unreal. It's like a mix of a bad soap opera, plus a pretentious rock opera, plus really silly stereotypical R&B singing (ala Christina Aggalerra with all the unnecessary vocal flourishes). I like "it was just the neighbor, with a spatula in her haaa-yaa-yaa-and". The singing style is a lot like really bad musicals, where he's just singing prose without any real melody, in phrases that just run on and on and climax in nonsensical words.

1-6-06 - 1


I think I'm going to pick up one of these bad boys : DELL - UltraSharp 2405FPW for $879. 1920x1200 would let me play more poker. The only worrying thing I've heard about it is that they have a nasty high pitched hum, and I'm a quiet-freak when it comes to my electronics. The only crappy thing is my laptop only has VGA out, no DVI, so I'll never get the crystal-sharp loveliness that good LCD's are capable of.


1-5-06 - 1


Terrible poker day. I started off with about $400 in bad beats and bad luck, which of course put me on tilt and I went and blew off another $100 with pure donkey stupidity. So, Dan and I went for a bike ride on her new bike that I got for 'Mas (we take the Christ out around here). It's lovely and warm again all of a sudden, and the recent rain has made the grass pop up on the hills. We took down the 'Mas tree, and I struggled with it in a Homereque manner (with much Doh-ing and cursing). I also took apart my old broken hot tub. I smashed it up with my pickaxe which was sort of fun but messy (it was full of fetid swampy water, breeding all sorts of unknown creatures, I'm sure). I need to get a better handle on taking some beats and getting over it. On the plus side, I'm showing a bit more discipline about just quitting when I'm playing bad, though I still had to donk off $100 before I faced the music and walked away.


1-4-06 [poker] - 2

1-4-06 [poker]

This is the fish I was chasing today (and never hooked) :
name   hands    plays %  big pot %    won total    won per hand 
xxxx   324      87%      41%          -2391.45     -7.38
The dude loses over $7 per hand on average (!!). Almost 40% the pots he plays are "big" (more than 10 BB). A tight player has a big pot % around 5-10%. Any "plays %" over 80% basically means he plays any two cards. The few hands he doesn't play were probably raised before him, so he can fold 32o if it's raised before him.

1-4-06 [poker] - 1

1-4-06 [poker]

Ugh. Chased a huge fish around Party for a while today. He gave away $1600 (!!!) at the 400NL tables, and of course I got none of it. He would call you down with any top pair, like Q2 top pair Qs, and I just never got a hand against him to get paid. It fucking sucks when that happens. I chased him through three tables, and finally he quit. 400NL is also a lot higher stakes than I normally play. I took one ridiculous bad beat (he hit a two outer on the river!) and it cost me $400. Ouch. After all that I got a little tilted and blew off about $100 in the ring game pushing too much with marginal hands (top pair good kicker is a marginal hand in full ring!!). So, I'm -$100 for the day, when I could have easily been +$1000 with the juicy situation I had found.

The last few days (before today) have been my most profitable three days ever, about +$1500. I've been on a total card rush. It really reminds me that poker is simple - you'll win with good hands and lose with bad hands. Just try to lose less with bad hands and win more with good hands. My bankroll almost reached $3000 before the small setback today. I think I'll take the rest of the day off and try to reset my brain state.

1-4-06 - 2


Was Vince Young coated in grease? My god that boy is slippery, those spoiled brats from SC couldn't get their arms around him the way they get arms around slutty coeds trying to make their daddies mad.

Damn, I should've bet on Texas. I really know nothing about college football, but I did know that in the weeks leading up to the game, USC was getting ridiculous hype and Texas wasn't getting any. Any time you turned on a sports network they were talking about how great the USC team was. They were having thrilling debates like "Is Reggie Bush the best player ever in any sport? Or is Matt Leinart a better player?". "What if Reggie Bush could play Jai Alai against Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods, with their equivalent skills from their own sports transfered to that sport?". Wow, you guys are hype-crazed morons. That's a clear sign to bet against USC. USC was a 7 point favorite on the spread. In hindsight, that's an easy bet against them. I've said before Reggie Bush is over rated, and I think you saw in the game tonight what a speedy defense can do against him (and the NFL defenses are much much faster). Vince Young looked pretty damn good, but of course in the NFL he might be another Michael Vick ( = over rated suck fest).

1-4-06 - 1


Hook'em Horns!


1-2-06 [poker] - 1

1-2-06 [poker]

Juicy games last night and this morning, and my Roll is over $2000 for the first time in a long time (since I played a lot of limit two years ago). I'm getting the hang of the NL cash game, though I still have a lot to learn. Hopefully I can keep up a good win rate for a while, then I can move up limits.

1-2-06 - 1


Drew sent me the link saying that we got a game of the year mention in GamaSutra . It's funny, when the press is ripping you, you say they're a bunch of idiots who have no taste, etc. and then when the press applauds you, you think they're great.


1-1-06 [poker] - 2

1-1-06 [poker]

It's funny, when playing against major donks and guys I just can't relate to, I find myself thinking about them almost like a naturalist, like Jane Goodall or David Attenborough. Like "here we've found the much sought-after loose maniac; he's naturally surrounded by sharks, and as you can see, he's spewing chips in all directions; the loose maniac actually believes...". It's like I'm observing some sort of lower life form, that I can't really relate to, but I can pick up on patterns, and it's very condescending, like "hmm.. I think the monkey actually thinks he's making a strong bluff here".

1-1-06 [poker] - 1

1-1-06 [poker]

Rotten day at the office. -$120 for the day. Playing Party against other set miners has become a tricky minefield. My AA got busted by a set miner who struck gold (a set). The bad thing is if they don't have a set, you make no money, because they just fold. The only way to make a profit from a super-tight set miner is by stealing their blinds and taking little pots from them, but that's a grind, and of course the better set miners will be trying the same steals against you.

I hit a few sets, but only got paid on one of them, and that was cancelled by the one I lost. I made some in other pots, but lost a lot of small pots to an aggressive set miner who had position on me. It just sucks to sit with an attacking guy having position on you, if you check, he bets. If you bet, he might call just to see if you'll check the next street. I took some pots from donks, but also took a rotten bad beat.

old rants