Saturday, August 19, 2006

Friday Nights are for Fighting

I figured, after Thursday's craziness at the Riverside, that Friday would be off the hook. Sure enough, the heat was building by 6pm, and the tourney hadn't even started yet.

I'd probably just continue to play cash games and forget about the tournament, if it weren't for the cash games dying out during those two hours. The 4/8 is such a good game that the only way I can justify moving to the tournament is due to it withering up and stalling until players start busting out.

I never had many good chips except during the first hour, and that doesn't really count, because any player is allowed to make a "dealers" add-on for $15 (the whole $15 goes to the house/dealers, none of it goes to the prize pool, so I opt out) and get an extra 2500 in tourney chips. Plus the one optional rebuy/add-on can be taken any time in the first hour for 5000 in chips. So although I doubled up the very first hand, I still wasn't exactly looking pretty.

I limped in LP with Q8s. I flopped a queen and the BB let me take the lead, choosing to check instead. I turned a second pair, which ruined my runner flush and straight draws, but nevertheless strengthened my hand. I managed to keep betting the pot until I got him all-in, which doubled me through. He had QTo and never even once took the lead in the hand. Shame on him.

I got moved to Glenn's table. A much tougher table and local line-up. I still managed to hold my own, but Glenn got busted out shortly after I sat down, with AJ vs. 44.

Tommy is a local guy made good. He had a good run at the series this year, and has gotten sponsored by Bodog. He is moving to Vegas, looking for houses. He worked at a new car dealership, but quit after the series and is going to make a run at pro living. He is a tad too loose, and likes to see a lot of flops regardless of exposing premium hands to suck-outs. He is a nice guy, though, and I have been encouraging him to hang out with the right people. Unfortunately, he already had an experience with John Bonetti and the ponies. I told him to STFA from John, and get with some decent human beings. I gave him names, and I hope he makes it. He seems so vulnerable to getting pushed around and screwed by the wrong pros.

I finally met my demise in the tournament when an EP all-in, a stranger, had AJs and I had AKo. He flopped his flush, and I was crippled from 20k to 3k in one hand. After that, I tripled through with A2o vs. the two blinds, but then was forced all-in in the big blind with only 9k left (the blinds had just doubled to 4/8k). I chucked my last chip in without looking, and had the lovely beer hand, 72o, which got no help against QJo.

I got right back into the 4/8 kill, not liking the line-up of the NLHE game at all.

A 2+2er came to town from Pasadena and was playing in the game. By the time we left, he'd taken his $100 minimum buy-in and ran it up to about $500 or more. Glenn said he was extremely fortunate to run into other big hands when he had monsters.

Glenn got drunk and kept talking about poker. God, I hate it when he does this. I told him, "Why not just divide your $500 among the other nine players at the table and leave?"

I ran my stack up to about $350 in the 4/8, then had consecutive beats a few hours later. QQ demolished on the river by 32, jack high flush beat by king high flush the whole way (he never bet his hand, he check-called me from the flop, go figure).

Maniac Mike was playing the whole night. He is the guy who was OOP and limped in the NLHE game, then called my $30 raise (with AA) on my right, with 64o. He has something missing upstairs. He is a California biker, and almost came to blows with the Iranian couple, if you remember that story. He was playing the maniac off and on. Completely unpredictable. He would run from $1000 stack down to the felt and then back again over the nine hours we were there.

I finally ended the day at 1am, with a stack of $340 (bought in for $200, lost $40 pre-tourney, made $140 post tourney). Here are my overall results.

Last night:

-$65 (Net Tournament Winnings)
$100 (4/8 kill HE)
=35 Net winnings for Friday, August 18, 2006

(Total saved for new car pre-August 15 $2500. Current total $2510)

Felicia :)

Friday, August 18, 2006

Last Night

Blew the tourney. I might post how later.

Last night:

$60 ($2-6 spread HE kill)
-$65 (Net Tournament Winnings)
$40 (4/8 kill HE)
=35 Net winnings for Thursday, August 17, 2006

(Total saved for new car pre-August 15 $2500. Current total $2485)

Felicia :)

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Heater: OFF

Well, I finally hit a brick wall. I knew it would come, but at least it came swiftly and mercilessly. I wasn't even teased for a while, I just couldn't make a hand.

First off, though, the freeroll at Riverside.

We showed up, along with about 35 other freerollers. The chips are only 1k, which is really awful considering the blinds are 50/10 and double every 15 minutes. One can give a $10 tip to the dealers for another 1k. Also, having certain high hands or cracked aces in live play adds 500 to the mix. There is no cap on the amount of "extra" 500's one can earn during the week, so live play is definitely encouraged. Glenn said someone at his table had four top ups (2000 extra chips).

The payout structure is $500/250/125/75/50 and there is usually a deal made, due to the horrendous blinds by that time. In addition, the top five earn points for the quarterly freeroll, which is the one where they give away the car plus 5k.

So we are going to be spending a lot of time at RS. The promos are just too good to beat, even if I feel some things are rigged there. I have heard rumors before that The Don has to add about 5k per week to the BBJ rake for all of these extra promotions (he takes it from the rake, obviously, but that isn't the point). I do believe this, as the promos are so frequent and good that it would seem that the poker room is almost losing money every day.

Okay, so back to the freeroll. I was cruising along, uber shortstacked, until we were down to 11. Glenn had been out for a while, and was playing cash games. We were six handed and I got AQ, figured it to be the best thing going, and went all-in. Little did I know that behind me, there were the following hands: TT, 99, 88, 86s. The guy with 86s was in the big blind and caught both a straight and flush draw, so that is why he stayed in. No one really had any chips, so three of us were busted out on the same hand when the tens held up. One would think that I could catch an ace or queen, since no high cards were dead, but the final board was 7744x, all small cards. Go figure.

I started out doing well in cash games, zooming up to $40 before the freeroll, and then things went to hell.

I misplayed my first big hand at the 4/8 kill table. I had tens, raised, bet the flop against a lone opponent who still had chips (another newbie went all-in). He check-raised me, but I didn't put him on a hand. The flop was QQx and I put him on air. He seemed like he was trying to do the, "I have a queen, get out of my pot," routine. I followed my instincts. Both the turn and river were bet, but things just got worse. The turn was an ace, the river a jack. I figured that he probably didn't have much to start, but had made his hand somewhere along the way. He certainly kept betting into a dry sidepot (by the river a substantial sidepot). Somehow I let false logic get into my head, and figured that 1) even if he had nothing to start, he'd made something that beat tens, 2) he wouldn't keep betting into a starting dry sidepot if he truly had nothing.

My mistakes in the hand were many. Misplayed on every street save pre-flop. I wouldn't even call one more bet on the river (oy). Of course he turned over air. I couldn't go with my instincts, I had to try to come up with some convoluted logic to fold on the river. Oy vey. I is retarded.

The very next hand I had kings. I hoped and prayed the table would think I was steaming due to the tens hand, but only got one caller. I flopped quads and that was my high water mark for the night. I won the high hand bonus of $50, and a miniscule pot (around $20, ugh), and things swiftly went downhill.

For two hours, every pat hand was outdrawn on the turn, river or both (runner-runner). Every drawing hand, no matter the outs, never made it. I never once made a straight or flush, although I flopped about a billion draws. I remember one hand that had so many outs I couldn't even calculate them before action was on me. I was in the big blind with T8o and flopped top two. I actually had about 16 outs to win the hand (I didn't know I was drawing so live until it was over). But of course I didn't hit. Some yahoo with something like 73s, in middle position, who called a PFR with that, got the flush.

And that is how it went, all night, every hand. Usually the beats weren't "bad," because I wasn't getting premium hands busted (made flush busted by RR straight flush, poor Glenn). They were mostly just very excellent draws. Flop is a four flush for me, backdoor straight flush, gutshot straight, top pair, etc (all in one hand, I might add, lol).

So I managed to lose $200, even with the $50 bonus. Ah, well. Tonight is another night.

Last night:

$40 ($2-6 spread HE)
-$10 (Net Tournament Winnings)
-$200 (4/8 kill HE)
=-170 Net winnings for Wednesday, August 16, 2006

(Total saved for new car pre-August 15 $2500. Current total $2450)

Felicia :)

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Can I get an Eco-Friendly Car?

God, we are running so well that I almost hate to write about it. It's a double edged sword. If I continue to write that we are running well, regardless of the fact that I know we are on heaters, people will jump to the conclusion that I am only writing fluff reports of our play and glossing over the bad days. Even though I posted about Glenn getting bubbled on Sunday night by a runner-runner one card straight flush after flopping the nut flush.

Also, writing about it might turn off the magic ;)


Okay, so Glenn won the RS tournament AGAIN last night. Jeez, louise, this kid can do no wrong. Regardless of the fact that we started out not too far apart in chips at the final table (he had 31k, I had 28k), he managed to win, I only managed 5th. I'm not complaining.

Before the tourney, I had to sit in the $2-6 spread limit HE. I usually hate this game, but there were some funny characters at the table, and I made about $60 rapidly due to a couple of hot hands (pocket queens held up as well as turning a straight in the free BB).

After the tourney, we got a 4/8 full kill game going again and I doubled up quickly, but then only managed to cash out about $25 ahead.

In one tournament hand, I had T9s. There was a large PFR in front of me so I mucked. I would have flopped the straight flush draw. There were two all-in's, so I got to see my virtual hand, and I would have turned a SF.

In one 4/8 hand, I had T9s on the button. A liberal raiser to my right raised the pot, I overcalled after several limpers. I flopped the nut straight draw, and made my straight on the river. He paid me off, exclaiming he never, ever would have thought I'd play that hand. My recent looseness is still astounding regulars! I hope it lasts a while longer.

I think I'm going to keep a running total of my net winnings towards the new car here. It should be fun, and definitely will keep me accountable.

Last night:

$60 ($2-6 spread HE)
$35 (Net Tournament Winnings)
$25 (4/8 kill HE)
=120 Net winnings for Tuesday, August 15, 2006

(Total saved for new car pre-August 15 $2500. Current total $2620)

Not including Glenn's wins. It's up to him if he wants to publish this or not.

Felicia :)

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Don't Have a Hand? How About a Foot?

I forgot about a funny incident at MGM during the series.

Bad Blood and G-Rob came to play, not even knowing we were there (I'm sure they would have chosen to play elsewhere had they known they'd have to put up with me and Glenn).

At BB's table a guy with no arms came to the table. Not the guy from the 2005 series, who has an arm which doesn't work, but a guy with literally NO arms. He played with his foot (like that other, young guy).

After a short while, I noticed that BB had doubled up. I asked him if he'd doubled up against the handicapped guy. He said:

"No, I never got involved in a hand with that guy."

I said:

"Neither has anyone else, he doesn't have any hands!"

Groans all around.

Rocks and Maniacs

Things are still going rather well. I'm playing Hold'em more than ever. The one year hiatus from full-time HE really did a ton of good. While I had forgotten so many things about the game, I also left behind my misery of being forced to play HE all the time. Now I think of it more like a dance. A dance that I'm able to change with every session (and sometimes within a session). Whether I'm waltzing or moshing depends on the table dynamics. The ability or lack of ability to adjust never ceases to amaze me. Some opponents cannot change their game whatsoever, regardless of how necessary it is.

I'm going through my second reading of Ed's book. Definitely more thoroughly this time. I remember when Ed told me it was coming out, and I said I just wasn't interested, although I like Ed very much. I said I couldn't wrap myself around Hold'em anymore, I was way too burned out on the game. He told me that he'd mail it to me, to give the book a chance. I loved it immediately, but it didn't change my disgust of playing ALL HOLD'EM, ALL THE TIME. So on the shelf it went.

Now I'm looking at it in a new light. Not only are the games at RS always amusing, but they are challenging in the respect that no two games are ever the same. Unlike so many cardrooms around Laughlin, RS is never predictable, except in the fact that there will always be drama on any given day.

Usually in the summer, Laughlin is dead. The RS, however, attracts all of the southern California water crowd. They love the river. They have jetski's and seadoo's. They tend to play in the California way. Loose, aggressive, thinking maniacs. One minute the table can be pretty predictable. Loose, passive, typical locals/snowbirds. The next, a maniac will sit down and suddenly every betting round is capped.

Lately I have been getting more than my fair share of big pocket pairs outdrawn. Almost every AA, KK, and QQ have been cracked regularly, yet I get paid off on suited connectors and smaller pairs which flop sets. I am also able to check-raise whenever I want, due to the more aggressive nature that these games have taken on.

In one hand on Sunday, I was at a really volatile table with a thinking maniac. He is a youngish guy (late 20's) who obviously has lots of money. He races boats and claims he owns some kind of dealership in SoCal. I believe it, due to the way he is treated at RS. I saw him buy in for over 4k at the NLHE table on Friday night. Sometimes he would just go in blind on every hand. Other times he picked his spots. I tried to get his sister, a beautiful cocktail waitress there, to cut him off, but she claimed he knows what he is doing. Money doesn't seem to mean anything to him, and unless he has had to much too drink, he is pleasant to me (not the men, as much, but I had no problem with him).

Anyway, he was forced to play 4/8 full kill with overs on Sunday. I had to sit to his left for several hours, which means he was touching me the entire time. I don't get off on that, but since he'd dropped over 1k, some of it to me, I didn't complain.

So in the big hand, he did his normal blind raise. I was in the BB with Q4s and called. An UTG player, a tight, cautious, solid young guy also called.

I flopped the nut flush with an AKJ club board. Never got the straight flush, but this is when things got hinky. I meant to check-raise the young Californian. Instead, from UTG, the solid kid bet out. The maniac called (!?!), and I got off my CR. The maniac refused to call one more, and it was me against the kid I definitely wasn't hoping to bust.

The kid had not raised PF with AKo. Oy. He was so disappointed with the way he'd played the hand. He asked me if I'd have called if HE had been the one to raise PF. I told him no way in hell. I hope he learned to be a bit more aggressive, even with a maniac at the table.

I could go on and on about other odd hands, but they were ALL pretty odd, given the nature of the game.

Glenn and I played in the NLHE tourney at the Palms earlier that night. I didn't last that long. I tried to make a play against a calling station and it didn't work out (I had just been moved to that table and had no idea the guy was such a CS).

I survived with very few chips and got moved again. Then I managed to triple up with KQs. Then a loose, aggressive player raised out of MP with K9o (?!?). I was in the BB and went all-in with AQo. He thought for a minute, but finally said something about "giving me a bad beat" and made a horrible call with no overlay (I was the BB, there were no limpers, so calling was terrible in this spot). Men can be such creeps. I had previously thought he was an okay guy, but then this breech of etiquette combined with something retarded he said later that night (about women belonging in the bedroom) made me rethink my previous opinion on him.

Men, keep your frigging sexist and racist opinions to yourself. Please. Yes, I know you may have no penis and no balls, but I don't go around telling you that after giving you a bad beat in the poker room, do I? Likewise, you should probably keep your unwanted opinions to yourself, or maybe you will find yourself facing a gun barrel in the parking lot when you cross the line with some volatile player who has no patience to put up with your BS like I do. Do yourself a favor and keep your big mouths shut.

Okay, so anyway, to un-derail this post, I am still doing very well. I can get into a big hole (>$300 at a piddly 4/8 game) and still manage to dig my way out if I sit long enough. Poker is so easy.

During the tourney at Palms, however, I thought Glenn was going to win again. They were on the bubble, and Glenn had some decent chips. Then he flopped the nut flush in a big hand. He managed to get two all-in's out of it! One of the all-in's was the calling station I talked about before. This man had the king high flush to Glenn's ace high.

Yes, you guessed it, he got runner-runner straight flush.

He didn't seem to think this was odd in the slightest. Glenn was the bubble man, but shook it off and still played good poker at Riverside afterwards.

And so are the days of our lives,

Felicia :)