Magneto: Charles Xavier did more for mutants than you will ever know. My single greatest regret is that he had to die for our dream to live."X Men: The Last Stand"
I have some to a bit of a cross road in my poker playing days. I have taken some large steps this year to make myself more prepared financially to make some proper money playing poker. I separated my poker bankroll from normal money, took on a second job to give it a leg up and started properly recording the results of my live play. The results have been very good as I went through a golden run like I have never seen before, and my only regret was that one hand cost me nearly $500 in a play I can still not fathom. Aside from that, things have been going very well.
Online play has still been a bit of a roller coaster with no huge wins and a few decent loses to speak of. But essentially all the online bankroll, currently a whisker below $600, will remain online for various play when I have the chance. My focus this year has been on live play, which is always more fun and social of course.
I have expanded my network of home games, and each one gets a little more expensive than the next. I started with $15 SNG's, which evolved into 10c/20c NL games. Before long we added a 20c/40c spread limit game (which became NL in time, as at the spread limit is may as well have been limit holdem). Then came the $1/$1 game with $50 max buy in, and before long that became $100 max buy in.
I've always felt that I was good enough to win consistently at all of these games, and such has been the case at least according to the records I have kept since December.
I had the job running the pub poker tournaments to give the bankroll a start, but now I have been forced to quit that job, mainly because of time but also due to a lack of enthusiasm. At the end of the day, after taking out tax and expenses I was being paid about the equivalent hourly rate as a 15 year old at McDonalds. I would go the extra mile too, and shout a free drink for the first Full House, and then another drink each time the high hand was beaten. One night we had a queen high straight flush on the first hand, so that was a cheap night for me. Anyways, basically I shout a few drinks which comes out of my own pocket – nothing too major, but it's something I didn't have to do and did to make things more fun. One week I decided not to do it because I didn't have any cash on me, and some guy hit quad aces. He quickly asked for his free drink, and I said I wasn't doing that tonight – and asked what his kicker was, then told him that Quad aces with a jack kicker wasn't good enough (which got a laugh out of the other tournament director, if no one else). So the guy gets the shits and was an ass for the rest of the night, and you could really tell that I did not want to be there after that. There were other similar incidents, but this petty little one just sort of summed them up for me.
But the role of this second job was to give me a start on a live bank roll. I have that now, so it has served it's purpose and I don't need the job like I once did. I have enough in the live bank roll to survive a few swings at the levels I play and still be comfortable, and hopefully with some good play I could continue to grow it at the current rate.
Sadly the last 3 attempts to get everyone together for a home game have failed due to conflicting schedules or whatever other excuse was used – and I include myself as a guilty party as a game was set for last week but I was in Melbourne and unable to play. The $100 game is also in danger of being cancelled, as one player accused another of dealing from the bottom of the deck – an event which I was not there to witness but I would highly doubt it for several reasons, and others present were also sceptical of it. Regardless, this meant a few people were no longer invited or chose to no longer attend. Cutting down the numbers either way, the game is in danger and the host has said he would like to move it. Any other day during the week would make it impossible for me to attend.
So that leaves me with a little problem. I have the live bankroll, but all the live games are crumbling. Having the money it is a hollowed out Super System doesn't make it grow (and no I didn't do that, it's just a metaphor). But where o where can I go to find a game on any time of the day?
The answer would be obvious to any normal poker player reading this. You should go to where it is actually legal to play, where you can't claim it's a friendly game and where the is no real host. I have to break my cherry, swallow hard and head out into the great beyond.
It's time to finally play poker at the casino.
The only casino in Sydney has a lack lustre reputation for poker though, as the long waiting lists to play are coupled with a $1 per hand "CC" instead of a rake, which means basically every player pays $10 in rake every orbit, which is quite steep.
Most of the players at the $1/$1 game are regulars at the casino, and I seem to be able to hold my own against them and their uber-aggressive ways. Or maybe they save their A game for when the casino beckons.
I will have to wait for a night I can go when the Distraction is not available, as a trip into the city without her would be seen as criminal.
So I will either get a great new stream of games and bankroll growth, or finally get spanked into my place by the real players in Sydney. Either way, it is the logical next step and one that I should not avoid any longer.