Monday, March 19, 2007


For the past 6 weeks, poker has been a relative "meh" experience. No big wins, no big losses, just "meh."

Most of you know the drill. You're online, and after mucking 32 straight hands, you get dealt AA in the big blind. Action folds to you. You finally flop a set, lead out into a pre-flop raiser on an A-hi board, and then your opponent folds.

The old adage is true - you gotta give action to get action. I think my play of late hasn't been giving much action. On one occasion, as I walked out of a Thursday night local game, one talented player announced to the room: "There goes the tightest player in Greenville." Great. Two weeks later after I bet the turn after an Ace hit, an older gentlemen who had never seen me play before that night mucked immediately with second pair. "That guy's been folding for an hour, of course he had the Ace," he said after the dealer ran out the board which would have tripped him up. Great. I did have the Ace after all.

So how long does it take to dismantle an image you've built up over the course of a few months? Apparently to some players, not long at all.


With my tight image in tact, I figured Saturday was as good a night as any to take advantage of it. Taking advantage of your tight image is an art all its own. It's not the equivalent of capitalizing on a loose image. The tight player needs to bluff more while the loose player needs to just keep betting his monsters in the same pattern as his bluffs.

And bluffing more requires better reads.

I made one bluff in position holding AQ on an all undercard board. I played the hand just like I had an overpair and topped off my action by asking my opponent how much he had left after he checked the turn. I calmly put exactly that amount of money into the pot and after he claimed I had none of that board, finally folded.

Later, I busted the same guy with a marginal holding of 56o by rivering a straight. GucciRick, sitting to my right, wondered aloud, "Will the real BadBlood please stand up, please stand up?"


At that point, I should have realized that my tight image was successfully torn down.

I didn't.

I bluffed off a huge pot by representing a flush on the turn, again calmly putting my opponent all-in on the river after he checked to me. It was a decent bluff, played just like I would if I had the flush. But the opponent called with top pair.

Sadly, it was a big enough pot to define my evening - another small loss.


It's true, the more you play, the more you learn. I'm still hoping for that consistent, winning play to come back to my game. The type of play that made my bankroll bloom late last summer and early fall. Unfortunately, the longer it's missing, the more you think it won't come back. And therein lies my malaise toward the game right now.

Locally, one room's jackpot is over four thousand Quatlu's. Pocketing some Triskelion currency of that magnitude would cheer me the hell up. Tuesday, I roll again.

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