Friday, February 24, 2006


I've been working on my second Stud theory post. It's a tough subject to tackle. I would say that writing about Stud is harder than writing about any other poker game, at least, for me.

Until I get this monstrosity up, I figured I'd post a few of the discussions I've had on Two Plus Two lately.
Someone sailed on the Princess cruise right after ours. He played the 4/8 LHE hell some during the week, too. Here are some excerpts from our discussion on cruise ship poker (not to be confused with poker cruises):

"1 Poker table was found and was active every night from about 8:00 pm on. Game was 4-8 and table was full handed most of the time with wait lists during busy times."

"I will say this was absolutely, positively the best table I have ever played on. Extremely loose passive. 7-9 on every flop, rarely any raising. A 2+2er goldmine. Rake was high at 10% of pot up to $5 max per hand. Approx 95% of hands capped the rake."

"The dealers were so slow, and the procedure so painstaking that we could barely stand to play. We timed the very best dealer of the lot, and he got out just 10 hands per down.

We thought the most hilarious thing was their rule of kissing to call the floor. I told them that on land, that would definitely be trouble, and that it didn't seem to be going over too well on the ship either, lol.

After the second night of this, I finally just started hollering "FLOOR!" every time they did the kissing routine. I also tried to "help" them get 30 hands out an hour, and explained why that would be favorable to THEM, but only one or two of the dealers actually understood that they would be making more money this way."

"I think the slowness was also due to us not being able to buy chips at the cage. They sold chips out of the dealers bank and refused any other type of transaction. This made fills necessary every 45 minutes or less (according to my calculations).

The game moved so slowly. Dealers refused to deal while getting a fill, selling chips to a player, filling a vacant seat, etc. Every opportunity that they had to deal an extra hand here or there was missed. I tried to give them tips on getting in hands, but they didn't seem to care whether they made more money or not. The Canadian guy was the only dealer who acted like he had an epiphany when I told him how much the poker table COULD be making per hour in tokes. Oh, well.

Also, the Romanian girl argued with me about plastic cards vs. the horrible cards they were using. I couldn't believe she actually asserted that their cards were just as good, lol."
"For those of you who have never been to Laughlin (I'm sorry if you have), the Riverside was the original casino there, owned by self-styled mobster turned scary plastic surgery victim Don Laughlin.

Pretty much anything goes at the Riverside, as long as you don't cross the "mafia."

Following is what I experienced the first time I played at the Riverside. The casino has been a constant source of amusement for me whenever we are at home in Arizona and looking for some low-limit laughs at a local cardroom:

I was playing for the first time in a tourney at my local mob-room, Riverside. At the time I didn't realize that the tourneys are really -EV, even if one wins first place. $2000-4000 is regularly "missing" from the prize pool. It is so obvious and ludicrous that even the most naive of tourney players at Riverside said, "That's the price for playing in a Riverside tournament."

Anyway, during play there were a couple of cash games that stayed alive. In one of them was an older man, maybe 70's. He was sitting next to the dealer.

I suppose that a big hand had just finished, with the older man not liking the beat he took on the river. As the dealer waited for him to either table his cards or muck, a long pause ensued. The older man didn't want to give up his cards at all. He held them there, face down, as the dealer continued to wait for him.

Finally, with his other hand, he balled his fingers into a fist, reared back and gave the dealer a quick right hook on the jaw.

The dealer was stunned, but quickly called, "Security, Security!" I felt that security and the cops would be soon on the way.

Instead, the CRM and floor went up to the man. They picked him up by his armpits. The CRM said, in a patronizing tone, "Sir, we don't allow players to punch our dealers here. Why don't you go cool off in the pit for awhile, play some games."

The dealer kept dealing like this was a common occurrence. From what I've seen over the past three years, I'd say it is."

Felicia :)

Monday, February 20, 2006

Riverside Omaha 8 Fun

Thanks for all of the comments on my Bystander poll. Only one person didn't understand the question and answered what she would do, instead of answering why so many Two Plus Twoer's said they would come to the rescue (Tanya). I really thought more people would answer that way, so that was a pleasant surprise. I love polls, can you tell?

We have gone to Laughlin the past few nights to play some LLO8 at Riverside. The casino has been jampacked due to the holiday weekend.

On Friday night, I decided to try the Phil Ivey experiment of limping into every unraised pot. I know that this is much different than the "exact" experiment he tried, and I'm certainly no Phil Ivey, but I figured with the Riverside 2-6 spread limit game, I could at least attempt to copycat Phil.

Results were horrible, I lost $70 in the first hour. Of course, I didn't hit at all with my crap hands, like one would expect at times, and sees ALL the time in LLO8. Had I played literally thousands of hands this way, I'm sure I would not have been down as many small bets as I was. For instance, not once in that hour did I hit a set, nor trips. Just a coincidence. I didn't river the butt end of the straight nor the high end once with my crap like 69xx. I didn't hit runner-runner flushes or full houses. It just had to do with the lack of time, nothing else. I'm sure my hands would have "broke even" given a significant amount of time.

Unfortunately I didn't get that time, because a well known guy sat down to my right after the first hour; a guy who raises about 50% of the time, to the maximum amount ($8.00) pre-flop. So my experiment went out the door with his presence at the table. I immediately stopped trying to limp in for $2.00 when he was seated.

Luckily, going back to my original style of play (table rock), I was able to get almost all of my $70 back before we left. I think I was $13 short altogether.

Saturday night I won 16 small bets ($32) at the game. My wins aren't as good lately because, for whatever reason, recently the regulars aren't willing to play with a full kill anymore. I guess some are realizing that good players are really "killing" them with the doubled stakes ($4-12). C'est la vie.

Oddly enough, after almost completely dying in Laughlin, O8 seems to be making a comeback. Riverside claims they are getting two full tables almost every day now. I have heard that the Belle has reinstated their O8 tourneys and is also spreading live games. The Palms was getting a table every night for a while, as well.

For those who most recently joined my incessant ramblings (ie, my journal), O8 used to be the most popular game in Laughlin. Like everywhere else, though, Hold'em finally crushed O8's popularity, and during the past 18 months, it's been ALL HOLD'EM, ALL THE TIME almost everywhere in Laughlin.

The seniors who come here to snowbird love to play O8, because mostly they just shift their chips back and forth, no one really losing a lot, thus they are able to spread their pensions a little farther than LHE. They like to play O8 because they can play virtually every hand, limping in for a mere $2.00. They might lose $100 in a week this way, whereas in LHE they could lose that per day, easily (and maybe a lot more).

Glenn says my statistics on Riverside O8 are outstanding. He has invented a type of program like StatKing, since (for whatever reason), our SK software no longer works on his PC.

He says my win rate is about $10 per hour at RS for the 2-6 spread limit game with no kill. The irony is that I'm such a rock, everyone knows it, yet they STILL give me action the whole way, just sure I've only got 1/2 of the pot locked up and that their non-nut one way hand is good for 50%. It's almost like the whole suspension of disbelief phenomenon (except in this case it's "suspension of belief!"). They will even grumble and grumble about how they "knew" I had them scooped or three quartered, but pay me off anyway. Every once in a while I table a really crappy hand that "got there," just to give them the impression that I play sub-par hands, too. My table image is still one of a rock, however, but they can't stop themselves from giving me action, so I have no motivation to change.

This is not exactly "good poker," and you won't see me claiming it is. I'm just grinding away, passing the time and getting some free food and drinks at Riverside.

Finally my good run with online O8 has come to an end. It felt so strange to just constantly win. I'm not used to it, even as a nut peddler. I'm used to going through periods where I cannot make a hand stand up, no matter what. That is more "normal" than running good all the time.

So yesterday my winning streak came to an end, and now I feel like things are more like they should be, lol!

Felicia :)