Monday, May 31, 2004

Weekend Wrapup

Had a very nice 3-day weekend. In fact, any day not at work is a fine day, and 3 in a row are hard to argue with.

Plugged away some more at the 2/4 tables with some good success. As you can see to the right, my debt to Party Poker is decreasing with each passing week. I can almost smell victory, not quite like napalm, but close.

While I was online, I managed to give some good luck to the blogger who is a frequent visitor to this lonely blog. Way to go. Outhouse to the penthouse in under 2 minutes only to dominate the last 3 players into submission. Not sure they knew what was coming.

Some mindless dumbass online decided to mock my raise in the big blind with KK, since he had already called UTG. He says to me "That's not going to work. I have a good hand, since I called UTG. You dumbazz." Not only did he spend too much typing to call or re-raise me, I K came on the flop and he soon had to eat his own words. I kept quiet although the temptation to grill his sorry self did cross my mind. No matter, I ended up for that session quite nicely.

Thursday, May 27, 2004

You Know It's Going to Be A Good Night When...

- You sit down at a 2/4 table and are dealt 8,5. Checks all around and since you've posted a big blind you get to see a flop. The flop is 5,8,8.

- You sweat your buddy at the freeroll tourney and of all coincidences is sitting not only at the same table, but right next to, Pauly.

- You see your buddy make the money in a 1500+ tourney, finishing 38th.

- You make a nice quick $103 at two 2/4 tables inside of 2 hours and close up for the evening within $500 of your long-term goal.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Random Shizzle

So I finally got back to the point where I was before I idiotically joined a 5/10 table looking to catch a wave. It only took me 3 weeks of 2/4 playing to recuperate that little debacle.

Thoughts on variation...

Most statistical geniuses will tell you that variation is reduced when the number of samples is increased. In the realm of poker, if you have a positive EV, or a positive $won/hand ratio, then you can reduce your variation (standard deviation) by simply playing more hands. How can you do this without actually spending more time playing poker? Well the answer has been found by many other poker bloggers, but it is simply playing at multiple tables. I've recently began playing at two, count 'em two, tables at once in an effort to reduce variation in bankroll. Anecdotally, this has worked well so far, where the first table I've joined I lost a little, whereas the second table saw me turn enough of a profit to have an overall winning session. I haven't had a session where I've been down at both tables at once.

Thoughts on TV coverage of poker....

I really can't wait for ESPN's WSOP coverage. If it was anything like last year's, I'll be watching it over and over again. Coverage begins June 8th I believe. I've also seen ads on TV for a new season of Celebrity Poker Showdown. To me, there's a huge difference between watching good poker on TV vs. bad poker on TV. I can re-watch any WPT episode or WSOP coverage and enjoy it as if I were watching it the first time. The Celebrity Poker is another story. I actually took it off my TiVo season pass manager because it was simply awful playing. If the celebrities are entertaining enough, I'll watch it; but generally it is one or two decent players playing against celebrities who've learned their skills by watching the Party Poker .50/1 tables.

Thoughts on spouses....

So I'm playing last night trying to get my raked hands total above 150 at Party so I could participate in the nightly Freeroll Tournament. The door to my computer room opens and my wife is there claiming something to the effect that we're overdue for some action, i.e. sexual intercourse. What to do, what to do. I guess I have to close down Party Poker and leave the tables. She's been very tolerant of my playing time there, but still, to interrupt me mid-hand only 38 hands shy of the Freeroll. Talk about a dilemma wrapped in a conundrum. Luckily for her I was up for the evening. Pun intended.

Sunday, May 23, 2004


I've been constantly reloading this page:

GutShot Poker

It's a more than decent reporting of the WSOP, with good pictures and some hand histories.

Apparently a few names have already busted out:
(Click and drag to see the names, I've set them to white font to avoid spoiling anybody who wants to wait and see it on tv)

Daniel Negreanu, Chris Moneymaker, Paul Phillips

Some celebrities appear to still be in. Laura Prepon from "That 70's Show" is still there according to the above site. She'd do wonders for poker if she made it to the final table :)

I'm not laying odds on that bet though.

Thursday, May 20, 2004

Pacific vs. Party

Well after playing both sites for a bit this week, I have some observations regarding the two.

I think I like the Party interface better. At least for me, I can see the suits and ranks of the cards better on the table and in my hand.

Also, and more importantly, the cashouts on Party take roughly two days to hit my bank account. I requested a cashout from Pacific on Sunday the 15th. After a few days of seeing its status as "waiting", I did some research.

Looks like their policy is to hold cash out requests for 5 days, during which time you may reverse the request and receive the money back in your account immediately. After the 5 days, if you request a wire transfer as I did, you must then wait up to 7 business days for the transfer to take place.

That's pretty pathetic. Up to 12 days to process a cashout vs. 2 days at Party? Not that I'm cashing out all the time, but when I want my money, I want my money. Right now. Today. Yesterday even.

So if anyone has any Pacific cashout tales to tell, let me know.

Monday, May 17, 2004

Pacific Playing

Note: I edited this post to reflect that I was playing Pacific, not Paradise. Doh!

After the WBT was over, I decided to test the waters at Pacific a bit with some limited bankroll. I dove right in to the 5/10 tables and won about $140 right away. I cashed out, and then requested a cash out of my original $100 investment and another $100 profit. This left about $60 in there to mess around with should there be another WBT on Paradise.

So I figured I'd play in some tourneys there and see what they are like.

Holy Fish Tank Batman!

Granted, it's only 2 tournaments, but I'm 2 for 2 in first place finishes. My plan is to play ring games at Party and tourneys at Pacific. What the hell. With all the great cards I got in the WBT II, I'm going to run with my luck there and see where it goes.

Sunday, May 16, 2004

Lame Attempt at a Write Up

I entered this tournament figuring that I'd just be happy to not come in last. I realized early on that due to the structure of the tournament (800 chips, blinds go up every 10 minutes) that it could easily happen if I play a bit too tight. Well the cards that I got really didn't let me play tight so I just went with it.

First hand of the tourney is AJ clubs. I raise pre-flop and get 2 callers. The flop comes 622. I figure that nobody in this tourney is calling raises with garbage so I bet out for about the size of the pot and everyone folds. Woohoo, I won a hand!!!

Second hand is also AJ, but off suit. Mean Gene throws out a big raise and I'm thinking that my AJ ain't so good right now so I fold it. A few hands later I'm dealt AT spades and once again Mean Gene throws a big re-raise in my face so I muck those cards.

I'm dealt AK diamonds and just smooth call the flop. The flop had two diamonds so I bet out a decent bet and everyone folded to me. Then comes AK off right afterwards. Two limpers into the pot and I say to myself "No way," and bump it up about 3x the big blind. Everyone folds and I think Mean Gene was a bit miffed he couldn't limp in with his Hammer :)

I'm dealt 77 on the button and raise it only to win the blinds. I call a bet with JT diamonds and when two diamonds hit the flop, smooth call the bet again. A ten comes on the turn and is the highest card out there. With top pair and a flush draw I bet out and get folds all around.

At this point I'm doing pretty well, but really don't want to just sit on my chips and get blinded back down to an average stack. I try a blind steal attempt with K9 diamonds on the button, but an A hits the flop and my bet out is raised. Gotta fold that puppy. Then I'm dealt KK and simply smooth call. Mean Gene raises and I reraise. Mean Gene raises again post flop and I go all in. He had QQ and doubles me up. If only I had more chips I could have busted him which would have turned out to be nice since he finished 2nd.

Not much later I'm dealt KK again on the button. I put MaudieB all in and win. I think that's the first player I eliminate. Later on I'm dealt TT UTG and raise to win the blinds. Again, I'm trying to play my stack to its advantage, so when I get A2 diamonds, I am raising. Now I'm winning some blinds with this strategy and when I get decent cards, it's tough not to feel confident.

Two hands in the next ten or so, I'm dealt QQ and just win the blinds. Holding AJo, I folded to a pre-flop raise. Turned out the raiser had 77 and I could have won, but AJ is not a Hellmuth top ten hand, so it's easy to fold that one. :)

I don't really win any major pots but am dealt some decent cards and we finally arrive at the final table. I'm either first or second in chips to Otis from Up For Poker. I have a decent feeling, but I know everyone here is a quality player so I'm not getting too cocky as Han Solo would say.

I am able to eliminate Mashashi when I get dealt KJ diamonds and see a K on the flop. Mashashi goes all in and I call, getting a J on 4th street to complete my 2-pair. My raises are right about the 3x BB level and usually are able to get weak hands out of the way, but Boy Genius and Otis are easily able to call if they want to.

After it gets down to four players, with 3 places paying, I get an ominous feeling. I call a bet with A2 off and flop two pair. Not wanting to mess with Boy Genius, I go all in and he folds.

Then it happens. I'm dealt AQ and raise it up. Otis re-raises and I go all in. He's holding QQ and there is no help in the form of an A on the board. So I'm out in fourth. Oh well, I can honestly say it was a huge amount of fun to play in this tourney and make it to the final table. I had no idea what the playing styles would be, but I definitely have to attribute my success to the cards I was getting. The hands held up, just until the last one so the poker gods were kind to me tonight.

I'd like to mention the superb short-stacked play of Mean Gene at the final table. He was severely short-stacked as we got down to four players and played an all or nothing style. It worked out great and he finished in second place overall. Truly well done and my kudos go out to him, Otis, and Boy Genius for finishing in the money.

The only issue I had was that I thought the tourney moved a bit too fast. If I didn't get the cards I got early on, I'm sure I'd have busted out earlier. I'm definitely looking forward to the next one. Special thanks go to Iggy for setting this up.

WBT II Update

I'll try to make a nice post recounting my play in the WBT II.

Bottom line: 4th place. The bubble. Knew it would happen as I was chip leader for the majority of the time. Oh well.

Took back some $$$ at the seemingly soft Pacific Tables. So I finished up for the day.

Thursday, May 13, 2004

Small Hiatus

I will be heading for the coast, Charleston to be exact, tomorrow and won't be coming back until Sunday. At which point in time, I will promptly get trounced in the World Blogger Tour II Tournament. It will be nice spending some time with the wife by ourselves. Her parents have graciously decided to take care of our two kids for the weekend. We haven't been together alone in two years so this will be nice.

Not much poker stuff to talk about, just played some decent 2/4 tonight and last night. But still haven't made back what I dropped on Monday.

In other news, I finally got a high definition cable box receiver today. Hooked up flawlessly, and even though I only have about 6 channels, the difference in picture is amazing. When I was watching the series finale of Frasier, it was like watching a DVD. ESPN HD is why I signed up for the package. Watched some of the hockey game on it tonight and was awestruck.

Looking forward to the NFL season on ESPN HD. It's real early, but GO PATS!!!!


I'm convinced that the attraction of poker, be it online or live games, is the nature of feedback provided to the player.

When you make a decision in a poker game, the just rewards or stiff penalties related to that decision are immediately thrust upon you. Making a big raise to bluff someone out of a pot? Immediate positive feedback as the stack of chips makes its way towards your end of the table. Chasing a draw when you were in fact drawing dead? Immediate negative feedback as your chip pile diminishes.

In real life, the impact of your decisions is not known immediately, perhaps not ever. And these could be major decisions too. Getting married, having kids, which school to go to. Each of those decisions could have a much larger financial impact than whether you choose to raise or fold a hand in Hold 'em. Yet you won't receive any immediate feedback on those decisions, making them much harder.

As humans, I believe we are feedback junkies. I want to know if what I did was right, and I want to know right now. Only poker brings that to us. Thus its potentially addictive nature. Ok, drugs probably do that too, but I can't claim much experience there.

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Random Update

Ok, bored here at work while I'm checking out, again, the software product that I singlehandedly develop....

Party poker hammered me last night. "So not good!" as Chandler would say. I have to at least think I was pretty consistent in my play, it's just that the good starting hands were few and far between. I played them aggressively when I got them, but couldn't catch a flop for the life of me. I think we all know how that goes.

So since I'll be at work late, I bought some CD's to listen to so that the boredom doesn't overwhelm me.

1. Killswitch Engage - The End of Heartache
2. Himsa - Courting Tragedy and Disaster
3. Children of Bodom - Hate Crew Deathroll

I'm betting most, if not all, of you who read this won't recognize nor have heard a song from any of the three bands listed above. No matter. Just great kickass metal. I have somewhat of a penchant (am I even using that word right?, ahh, who cares, it sounds like I know what I'm talking about and that's all that matters) for bands from Sweden. I'm very convinced that when Cliff Burton passed away in 1986 in a bus crash in Sweden, the soul of true metal was buried with him. Metal bands in the US, until somewhat recently, have blown - especially Metallica. But what evolved out of Sweden was truly the next generation of metal. Trust me, if it's metal and from Sweden, it's awesome. Either that or the influence of Abba is what caused the whole thing. Can't really prove either I suppose.

I'm actually going to see Killswitch Engage and In Flames on May 22nd in Charlotte, NC. It's about a 90 minute drive from here in Greenville, SC; but it will be totally worth it. In fact, how lucky am I that the World Blogger Tour is this Sunday and not next? So lucky! See? You can mix metal and poker. I do it all the time.

Sunday, May 09, 2004


is not winning the $205 million dollar lottery. Crap. I was so ready to spend it too. To top it off, someone managed to win and the jackpot goes back to $10 million.

I grinded out about 5 hours of playing 2/4 limit and could not muster anything. Finished down $34. You'd have thought I'd either have gone broke or won a decent amount in that time. Neither happened.

Saturday, May 08, 2004

Witness to the Hammer

I was playing a bit of Party Poker when I saw a couple of other blog-meisters playing at a $25 no-limit ring game. Pauly, Al Can't Hang, and Stinky Pants were sitting at the same table. I joined for a while and lost my $25 buy-in (I suck at these no-limit ring games), but before I did, I managed to grab this:

Friday, May 07, 2004

Wish Me and You Luck

Ok, quick post, quick idea:

This weekend, the South Carolina PowerBall jackpot is around $200 million. If I win, I will personally stake each and every poker blogger who visits here an entry into the WSOP main event. Travel and accomodations included, whatever that means :)

So, root for me, and for you. That way, we can all win.

And best of all, I won't make you wear any BadBlood-logo'd clothing.

Any comment posted before 11pm EST on Saturday May 8th qualifies. Man, is that comment-whoring or what?

In the 120,526,769 / 120,526,770 chance that I don't win, well, it's the thought that counts, right?

Home Game Report

Last night was my bi-weekly home game that I've been playing in for the past few years. Has anyone ever played in a home game where they were the only winner? Well, I now have. Of the seven people who played, I was the only person to finish a winner. And it wasn't even a tournament format where winner takes all, it was 5 hours of ring games. Final tally: +$225. Off to the strippers.

Well before I do that, I'll recount a few hands of note where I thought I played pretty well.

During a 2/4 Hold 'Em game, I'm dealt 7,7 on the button. I bet out and get about 3 callers. The flop comes 2,3,8 rainbow, which to me isn't so scary. I open again (we play that the heavy, i.e. the last raiser/bettor, bets first each round) and get one caller. This one caller, Teddy Ballgame, is reknown for letting other people do his betting for him. So whenever he calls my bets, I know he's most likely not chasing a draw, but actually has a hand. Turn is a 6 and I continue to bet and he continues to call. River? How 'bout a 7. I have much more confidence in my hand now, and think about a check-raise. I decide to bet it out and Teddy calls. I show him my trip 7's and he says "Lucky catch" showing me his pocket 9's. I told him that had he bet that hand he may have won.

Someone calls 3/6 Hold 'Em and I'm dealt A,4 diamonds. I decide to raise an early position's bet to six and get a few folds. Three players see the flop which to me is garbage - 3,8,10 - no diamonds. Undeterred I bet out again and get heads up with the button. The button player is Easy E, a notorious tight-passive player. I swear, you look up tight-passive in the dictionary and you'll see his smiling face. I continue to bet out on the turn and on the river, having caught absolutely nothing to help my hand. Based on his body language, I know he has me beat, but I also know I can bluff him out of the pot as he plays only strong hands. I bet the 6 after the river and he pauses to think for a while, then mucks. I show my A,4 and he kicks himself for not calling. After that little display, it becomes time for me to tighten up so I can get people to chase my monsters.

During an Omaha 2/4 game, I'm dealt ??2,3 - can't remember the other two cards, and I decide to see a flop. Great flop it was with an Axx giving me the nut low. We play this game two ways, sometimes with 8 or better for low, sometimes without. This was without, so I just needed to avoid a 2 or 3 on the last two cards to grab half the pot. I decide not to raise anything this time, just to smooth call. But because there were still 6 people playing this pot and raising, I wasn't too concerned. I manage to avoid the remaining 2's and 3's and after the river hits begin my raising crusade. One other player exclaims "That is such a weak attempt at buying this pot. I know you don't have 2,3 because if you did you'd be raising earlier." Well sorry, I do have 2,3 and your 2,4 is second best. Take that.

It was another fun night in our series of home games. Here's a tally of my last 8 home games: +85, +46, +227, -8, +168, +267, +84, and +225. Thats +1094 if I can add things correctly. Slightly more or less if I can't.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Links for Links

Finally......The Rock has added links to the blog template.

If anyone else that I haven't linked to over there on the right would like a link, simply email me or leave a comment. I mainly added them for my own use to make it easier for me to visit the blogs I visit. I've tried to remember all the ones I go to, so please don't be shy if you'd like to be over there.

Also, if I've titled your link inappropriately, please send me a recommendation on how you'd like to see it.

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Not Where I Want To Be

Ok, since nobody guessed the lyrics correctly...(at least Iggy tried)...the answer is...

Megadeth - "Go To Hell"

I even gave the soundtrack to the movie it was in inside the comments. Oh well, I guess there aren't too many metal fans who visit. No problem...

Anyway, I'm stuck here at work fixing a problem I created with the software I develop. Usually I'm pretty on the ball with these things, but a few, OK 4, problems slipped through the cracks this time and I have to fix them pronto. Not only that, but I am the only person in this galaxy that has the capability to do something else totally unrelated to my problems, so I have to stick around and get that done too. Not so good a business model when there's just "One Guy?!?!?!" who can do something that's business critical.

So there it is then.

Saturday, May 01, 2004

...And As Charon Sails the Seas...

Six.....six, six. The Number of the Beast, Iron Maiden

I put a guy on tilt when I was holding 6,6 in the pocket only to see a flop of 10,8,2. When an A came on 4th street, I check-raised to bluff out the two remaining opponents. Didn't work.

Alas, the River of Styx gave me the set of 6's and all was good down here in Hades.

PS: Bonus Points to who can name the band and song from this entry's title.