Archive for June, 2009


running bad…

Ok, that’s an understatement. I’ve seen more set over set or set beating my overpair action in the first 30 minutes of play this month than I need to see all year. I guess the May downturn is continuing for a while. It definitely makes it harder to play when you have been losing for a while.

To add to my running bad whining…I had a window replaced and it has a scratch. I bought a new end table and it was damaged, so I had it replaced. That one was bad too. The new one came today and the third time was a charm. I ordered shutters for the windows (over 40 of them). It took like 5 hours and two visits to make sure the order was done correctly. Guess what…most of the downstairs windows are incorrect as well as one upstairs. Sick. It’s looking like I’ll have to decide whether to take substantial savings and keep them or just have it done right which means another 2-3 week wait for them to be made. Ugh.

It could be much worse, but I’d really like to buy something and have it be correctly ordered, arrive on time and be non-defective. It can’t be that hard, can it?


the longest day yet…

I arrived at the Rio at around 2pm and found a waiting list of well over 100 people for 2/5 NL. The $1500 buy-in tourney had started at noon and there were no tables to put cash games on yet. So I waited. The trick is that most of the people on the list aren’t still there, so when they opened a new table and called the first nine people on the list, I waited. Only 7 people went to the table, so I was #8, took my seat and “budged” in line. lol Always looking for my edge.

I found KK early and was up about $150, but then got rivered and lost it back. KQ losing to Q7 when a 7 hit the river. Ugh. I was up and down a little all day long, but never really saw any cards, and when I did, they missed the flop completely. I was never down more than $300 and never up more than $200. I did get lucky on an all-in (for only $80ish) preflop when I called with QQ, and he showed KK. Three diamonds hit the flop and I had the Qd. A queen hit the turn and a diamond hit the river just to add insult to injury and I took that pot down.

At the end of the night, I walked away just ahead of even…TWELVE hours later. This is much better than going home behind of course, but I’d sure like to see a few more playable hands soon.

I was supposed to see my friend AC, but he busted early and wasn’t around so I’ll catch up with him later in the week.

I did see Jerry Buss, owner of the Lakers, and Amarillo Slim, world class poker player – both for the first time yesterday so that was cool.


poker is a game of patience…

Patience. There’s something I generally have little of. Waiting in lines, walking slowly behind people, waiting on other people to show up – these are not a few of my favorite things. However, without patience in poker, you’ll have days like my Day 2 at the Rio. Big losses.

I went back to the Rio yesterday, and plan to go today and tomorrow before my parents get to town on Thursday. Yesterday I was seated at a new table around 2pm and left around midnight when the table finally broke. Same seat #8 the entire time.

My day started slowly. Very slowly. Excruciatingly painfully slowly. (I’m not sure you can use –ly 3 times in a row like that. :) ) I saw no good hands to play, thus forcing the table to think I was ultra tight. I finally found a pair of fives. I limped, there was a raise, then a re-raise, and called all-in. I folded. I was up against JJ and TT. Good fold. The very next hand I get 55 again. I limp, and the SAME THING HAPPENS. I fold and they show JJ and 99. Of course the 5 hits the turn this time.

I find AK three times, raise with it and miss the flop horribly and have to fold. I’m now around 4 hours into my session and down a few hundred. I find KK and raise, getting one caller. I flop top set, bet and he folds, showing me a King. He folded because of my unfortunate tight image from getting bad hands. I should have checked that flop. Ugh.

A few hours go by (yes, it was that slow and painful), and I finally get AA. I raise to $20 and get one caller. The flop is Q96 and I lead out for 45. He raises to 145 and I push all-in. He had been a terrible player so I figured he had AQ. Nope. He had 96 for two pair which held up. Sick. Now I’m stuck for $600+. I buy in for $400 more and lose $100 of that to missed hands.

An army guy sits down to my right. He quickly loses one buy-in. I find 67s clubs and limp. It’s limped around and the flop is 458 with 2 clubs. The NUTS with a flush draw! I bet $10 hoping to induce a raise. Army guy raises to $45 and I come over the top for $145. He insta-calls. The turn is a Qd. I only have $190 left and push all-in and again he insta-calls. He shows Q8 and we sweat the river which falls as a 5. Whew. Ship it.

I find QQ later, and re-raise a bunch of $20 callers preflop. I get one caller – the flop is JTx. I bet and take it down. I won a few other small pots including a larger one with A8s diamonds hitting a straight on the turn and the nut flush on the river.

I left $27 ahead. Way better than the $1k loss it felt like I was going to take. In the end patience was key. The more you practice the easier it gets.

I was happy with my play all day. The AA hand wouldn’t have likely played any differently against that particular player. I might have folded against a few other better players, but definitely not him. On the drive home (25 minutes), all I could think about was where I had made my mistakes. I know I made one $75 mistake calling with AT on a board of AxQQQ against the same bad player. I knew he had a Q, but paid him off anyway. He showed the Q, and I mucked without showing. He says “Did you have an Ace?” followed by “There’s only one card in the deck that beats you, why didn’t you raise?” We’ll just leave it at “Um, duh.” (For those of you non-poker players, you’d never raise there because you are either splitting the pot, or losing. So raising can only lose you more money, not win it.)

Besides being a little less aggressive than I would have liked (the table was quite action filled, so it paid to sit back and wait), the only mistake I could find was my call of $50 on a board of J54 when I had 66. I folded to his river bet of $150. He had checked the flop and I felt like I had the best hand. I should have either folded or raised here I think. Calling was definitely the worst option.

Today I’m meeting up with a guy named AC that I met when I was on my sabbatical. I met him at the Bellagio and then saw him on TV busting Doyle Brunson in the main event in 2007. I texted him then and that was the last time I talked with him. Last week I was sitting at a table at the Rio and they were doing the bracelet presentation for the first event. To my surprise, they announce his name. I look up and sure enough – it’s him. Awesome!