Tuesday, August 02, 2005

And it seems such a waste of time

Are there lucky people out there? Are there unlucky people out there? There have to be. There's nothing special that makes someone lucky or unlucky, it's just their random position on the normal distribution curve of life. We all know that the -EV games at casinos are just that. But even still, there are people out there who are lifetime winners at blackjack and craps. Being -EV only means that on average, given enough trials, the casino always wins. Since the casinos see so much traffic, their variation is so much smaller than an individual player; it virtually guarantees them that they will see that +EV.

But what about the individuals who play the games? They certainly can't gamble often enough to hit that theoretical long term where central limit theorums and the law of large numbers matter. But there are people who win at these games. Of course, there are certainly more losers given that the mean result is negative, but there are people who fall on the plus side.

And so I consider where my sample lies on the curve (no, not that type of sample) given the following:

I am zero for three. I am like the big league rookie in his first game who's swung and missed at every pitch thrown at him. I had dreams of being a 1975 Fred Lynn but my results are like a 2004 Jason Giambi.

My "at bats" are attempts at moving up. Three times in this calendar year I've grown the online bankroll high enough to take a shot at the higher limits. Taking shots, after all, is what makes us better players and with a little luck, bigger winners.

I have a friend (he reads this at times, he's the Rocket from our home games) who has taken shots and basically hit for the cycle and had 9 RBI's. He took a winning session at 5/10 limit hold 'em to the 15/30 games and cleaned house. He told us how he won over $4k in a weekend just playing his standard game at the higher level.

Another friend, with MUCH more disposable income than I, took his shots at the $1000NL game on Party and did rather well for himself. He's cruising in a new Harley these days. I can't even afford one buy-in at that level.

Call it ego, call it what you will, but I don't look at these two players as superior to myself. I'm sorry, I just don't.

But then again, I'm 0 for 3. I'm hitting .000 and these guys are battling for the Silver Slugger award.

I've looked back at my play at the higher levels in an honest fashion. At least I've tried. And I don't see it. I don't see the difference in play that would indicate a reason for losing up there. I'm open to that possibility still, but I have a feeling that it's been some bad luck. And bad luck at higher levels can be deadly. The higher levels give you less of a cushion to withstand the variance. Obviously. That's why you need some luck. And that I haven't had.

I'll tell you, it's disappointing to drop half your bankroll for the third time in six months. Very disappointing. The worst part is knowing how long it's going to take building it back up. I've built it up three times and I'll do it again. But I don't want to. I want to take that shot and win. For once.

Because if that's movin' up, then I'm movin' out.

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