Saturday, November 14, 2009

Everyone Has A Lesson To Teach

State's Atty. Ilene Nathan: Mr. Little, how does a man rob drug dealers for eight or nine years and live to tell about it?
Omar: Day at a time I suppose?
"The Wire"

What a fascinating night of home game poker. We were playing a SNG with 10 players, which consisted of about 3 who didn't have a clue, 3 who only just had a clue and the rest were at a level I consider myself on. Oh, and one of them was a 9 year old girl. Yeah, she won of course.

What happened? I lost by playing badly, but I think I learnt lessons that will earn me much more money in the future. I gave people far too much credit for what they were doing, what they knew and what they were paying attention to.

Perfect example, raise preflop with TT, get called in 2 places. Flop comes AQ7, I follow up with another bet, get raised and 3rd player re-raises all-in. Ok, I'm done and much. 2nd player calls. They show 99 and K8. Hmm, very interesting.

But the lesson was in aggression, and knowing your opponents. I didn't catch on to what was going on until it was too late. By then, I loose a coin flip to a short stack on the turn (my 88 vs A9) and then loose another coin flip when I was the short stack, and away I go.

Thankfully, we played a cash game afterwards where I won back my buy in, as well as a bit extra for my time. Felt very comfortable in the cash game and tried a few more aggressive moves when the times seemed right. Worked pretty well, I think I might have to add a few weapons to my arsenal, which needs it.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Know When To Run

Prot: Let me tell you something, Mark. You humans, most of you, subscribe to this policy of an eye for an eye, a life for a life, which is known throughout the universe for its... stupidity.

I made my little visit to the local casino - got dealt nothing, did nothing with it, got sucked out on and then decided I should leave with the buy-ins I had still in my pockets remaining where they were. Disciplined, I called it, and decided too that would be my best decision for the night. Not much else to do really.

One buy in went South when I made what I felt like was a great read and a good play at the time - had a loose Asian player call all in drawing to a gut-shot, of which I had one of his cards. Alas, it was his night and not mine, so it came. Pity, because he was giving away chips all night, I just never had the fortune to be in the right spot at any given time.

In the mean time, I did have the chance to read "Take Me To The River" by Peter Alson. It was very readable, but only scratched the surface and felt very forced and unremarkable for the most part. Not the worst poker book I've read, but far from the best.

Got my first Melbourne home game coming this weekend, which should be very interesting. The players include my boss' boss, his boss, and his 9 year old daughter. That will be an interesting one - even if I win, I might just loose. If I do get into a battle with the 9 year old, I must just ask her father what it would be worth to him to have me loose. Nothing like a little fixing to get the bankroll padded, right?

Maybe it's just me, but I think the players at Crown at the minute really don't know how to enjoy themselves. You're allowed to talk, you know? Have a joke even.

One instance, I don't remember the exact details but fair to say a donkey called a large all-in bet with 4th pair, soundly beaten by the four card straight on the board. I say casually to the players to my left, who seem competent, "Wow, brave call I guess." With indignation, she and her friend replay:

"Ah, no - that was a stupid call if you ask me."

Yes. You spotted the fault there, well done you. I guess I'll keep to myself from now on then.

If you can't be winning at the table, at least have fun. When that's taken away, well I already said I walked away.