Thursday, June 30, 2005

Lesson Learned in Vegas

No, this is not a post about not mixing hard liquor with beer or wine.

I learned something about my live poker play while in Vegas. Disturbingly, it is the fact that I play better poker with sunglasses.

And MAN, do I hate guys who play poker with sunglasses.

I never wore sunglasses when playing live poker, mostly because I played limit poker and I didn't think sunglasses would make any difference. In my opinion, the only reason people wore them was to "look cool." I think they look retarded wearing sunglasses inside, so "looking cool" would be difficult.

But I decided to wear them in Vegas at the NL tournament at Mandalay Bay. It was reasonably bright in there, and there were a half a dozen other players wearing them. Granted most of them were donkeys wearing "Party Poker" hats (I kept thinking of ParPo and Fish from my comic) but I wouldn't be completely off base because a few of these guys seemed to be decent players.

Immediately the entire table said they were afraid of me because I was shuffling a stack of 20 and had a PokerSourceOnline Hat and glasses on. This might have been a good thing, people were actually laying hands down to me.

But what I really noticed is that the glasses made it MUCH easier to study other players as they were making decisions, especially in hands where I wasn't involved.

Maybe I am too self conscious to stare at a player when he knows I am staring at him. But I actually studied the players, looking longer than I would normally feel comfortable doing without sunglasses. And the info definitely helped me make decisions later in the game.

I continued wearing the glasses in the $200 NL game after the tournament, and it again helped me observe other players at the table.

I still never wore the glasses at a limit or spread limit game. I don't know if it would have made much difference, but it's something that I need to think about.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Screw G-Vegas

We're talking Okie-Vegas here, baby.

A hearty welcome to the blogging community goes to Oklahoma City blogger GaryC over at Low Limit Grinder.

Gary is already a better bogger than most of the rest of you, because he used my Referral ID at Poker Source Online !!!

I'll leave it to Maudie over at Poker Perspectives to arrange the first meet up, maybe at the T-bird or at Lucky Star.

Wait, I have an even better idea! SNGs at Maudie's house!

While I'm pimping, I'd be extremely remiss in not mentioning the fantastic job Pauly is doing over at Tao of Poker with live WSOP updates. I honestly don't know how he does it. I was there for hours at a time last week, and the only thing that kept me going was meeting people like him and Felicia. I mean, I used to do that sort of thing for a living, so maybe I have a particular dread of being stuck in that convention hall until 3 or 4 in the morning every day when the rest of Vegas is constantly calling out your name...It can't be easy.

I think all poker bloggers should meet at the end of the Main Event at the WSOP, that way we'll all be there for Pauly's funeral.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Vegas Days 5, 6 and 7

I found that increasingly things that happened in Vegas had to stay in Vegas, so the blogging kind of trailed off...

A sort of Poker Status Report:

I played at the Rio, The Palms, The Excalibur, Binion's, The Orleans and Mandalay Bay. The best experience was the Excal, even though I got killed at No Limit there.

$2/$4 at The Orleans: Up $44
$2/$4 at The Palms: Up $65
$200 NL at Excal: Down $200
$2/$4 at Binions: Up ~$50
$2/$4 at Mandalay Bay: Up $72
$500 NL at Rio: Up $25
$200 NL at Mandalay Bay: Up $150
$2/$6 Spread at Excalibur: Up $110

2 $60 Tournaments at Mandalay Bay: Down $120
2 $30+3 Tournaments at Party Poker: Down $66

The cash games are definitely where it's at in Vegas. Tournaments are fun, but the fish die off early and it becomes a crap shoot with the better players when it comes time to get into the money. At the cash games, the fish just keep donating and donating, and when they bust out they just keep going into their pocket. "Set up on table six!"


The Orleans was great. Plenty of tables and the play wasn't too crazy. There were actually some complete bricks at the table. We didn't start until well after midnight, but there were plenty of games to choose from.

The Palms is kind of a pit, this tiny little dungeon off the main casino. The players there were fun, with a lot of people who stayed on the river with any diamond trying to draw a diamond flush so they could get into a $200 drawing the next day. So there were some incredible suckouts that always seemed to involve a diamond or two. Everybody laughed it up at our table, but some of the other tables seemed to be very intense. There is a separate tournament room that isn't quite the dungeon that the cash game room is, but I didn't play there.

The Excalibur was my favorite room of the trip. You could park right by the Poker Room, the games were always running and always fun. The $2-$6 spread game was really a great variation that punishes the fish and rewards the more experienced players. Making it $8 pre-flop actually scares away the "I call any raise because the pot is bigger" low-limit morons who seem to suck out every hands by sheer force of numbers. If you get AA cracked or get quads you get to spin a wheel for cash. I got Aces four times in one night but they never got cracked. I got Kings cracked big time when I made my set on the turn but TT made his flush on the river. No spin for Kings Cracked, unfortunately.

Binions is a pit. Sorry Rooster, but the place is really old and run down. The table I was on was so over foamed you couldn't stack chips on it. But you couldn't play from a rack either. When I racked up my chips to leave but wanted to play one more hand, the dealer refused to deal me cards unless I took ALL my chips out of the rack. Either have a decent table or let players play from racks. The $60 tournament looked pretty good though.

Mandalay Bay was No Fold Em to the Extreme. Not only did every hand reach a showdown, every one had 3 or 4 players to a showdown, no matter what. You could have a royal flush and show your hand, and someone would call "just in case." Smallish room cut into the sports book, so if you like to watch sports on TV while you play, it had it's benefits.

The Rio was incredible. The poker room was closed due to the WSOP, but there were usually HUNDREDS of side games going. I only played in the $500 NL game but there were games spread all the way down to $4/$8 Limit and going all the way up to unbelievable amounts. Yes the gray chips that look exactly like $1 Imperial Palace chips are actually Rio $500 chips. First time I have ever seen Chinese Poker spread in a casino.

Hammer Tally:

2 for 3. Ironically, I won with the hammer twice at $2/$4 No Fold Em Hold Em, and lost once at No Limit when I raised, was raised immediately and then re-raised. As I folded pre-flop I was beginning to think I had a tell until one player showed KK and the other showed AA.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Vegas Day 3 and 4

Vegas Day 3 and 4 were a blur. One thing I remember from Day 3 was playing at a table at the Palms that had a guy with the last name Beer, Head and Glass. Pretty fun table too.

Earlier in the day I played in the $60 Freezeout tournament at Mandalay Bay. It's a pretty fun tourney, 30 players max and no juice. They open it at 3:00pm and it fills up around 5:15 for a start at 6:00. Starting stacks of $500 with blinds that start at $10/$20, rising every 20 minutes. That sounds fast but they go to $15/$30, $20/$40, $25/$50....etc. I got knocked out when I raised the $50 blind to $200 in position with 77. Early limper called and the flop was 953 rainbow. I went all in and he called with A5. Turn was an ace and I went out 9th.

Luckily I was freerolling because I won my entry at a ring game while I was waiting for the tourney to start. No Foldem Holdem takes on new definition at small stakes strip games. The table was full of guys who had McDonalds Franchises and were in Vegas for a convention. One guy called a raised pot on the river with Jack Three unimproved. I only won 2 pots the entire time I was there and almost doubled my buy-in. The hands were not notable, maybe two crappy pair. But when there's half a dozen callers at the river, you don't have to win a lot of pots to stay ahead. Just play a lot of hands that can hit big, and you will make money.

The second successful hammer dropping came at the Palms that night. Off strip so it was slighly calmer than the Mandalay Bay game, but you still saw some really silly calls on the river. I didn't have a high degree of confidence in the play, but I raised under the gun and bet the flop. The turn brought an outside straight draw for me, but the board obviously didn't hit high cards and the only caller left at the turn folded to my turn bet. So I am 2 for 2 in hammer plays for the trip. Bloggers represent!

Day 4 was the WSOP tourney. I don't want to talk about it.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Vegas Day 2

After Vegas Day 2 I was exhausted. After LITERALLY getting thrown out of the Rio at 3am (they were having a planned power outage, but that's not what you were thinking, was it...)I just had to get home and pass out.

We started the day at the Excalibur after hitting the IHOP, and I found out that second nut flush is no good for $125 at a $200 buy-in NL table. They did have KingLucky's favorite 100 Hand Video Poker game, which they didn't have at the Palms or the Orleans the night before. From there we went to the Rio to gawk at the stars playing the $5000 PL hold em event. Every big name player was there, and the highlight of my stargazing was asking Barry Greenstein how he was going to play in the Pot Limit Hold em event at the same time as playing the final table of the Omaha Hi/Lo event. His answer? "I don't know." I saw how he did it, when they took a break from the final table, he went over to his stack at the hold em table that was being blinded off, played one hand, doulbed up with a straight, then went back to the ESPN final table.

I also got to see Robert Williamson make an attemt at throwing cards into a trash can from 30 feet away, but his attempts were so pathetic that Chris "Jesus" Ferguson came over from the final table of the Omaha Hi/Lo game to give him some quick card throwing lessons.

From there we went downtown to play some of the crazy table games at the Fitzgerald. They play a weird-ass game called Extreme 21, and no, you don't have to drink Mountain Dew while you play it. The dealer plays against every hand individually and must beat the players hand without going over 21. So if you have a 12, once the dealer reaches 13 you're beaten. But if you get a 20, the dealer has to get a 21, EVEN IF HE HAS TO DRAW WITH HIS 20. I've never ever seen a dealer get a 29 at blackjack before, but I saw it at the Fitz. It was a fun variation of BJ where good hands hold up an awful lot more, but bad hands where you are counting on the dealer busting are out garbage.

We wandered Freemont Street to the sounds of Blue Oyster Cult and ended up in the Poker Room at Binion's Horseshoe. Or Harrah's Horseshoe, whatever you want to call it. Honestly, a complete dump. But I won about $50 at $2/$4 in a little over an hour and winning is always fun. I just missed the $60 NL tournament they play at 8pm. It looked like fun, there were around 100 people playing in it. One $40 rebuy and blinds that don't increase to terribly fast. I might try to catch it later in the week. When I cashed out of the poker game I began searching for KingLucky, who managed to find the most remote slot machine in Binions, so it must have taken me an hour to sniff him out.

After we got something to eat it was getting close to midnight so we headed back to the Rio to see how the PSO crew was doing and to cash in a $100 chip I forgot I had. I found out that Barry Greenstein had won the Pot Limit Omaha event and dedicated it to Charlie for Felicia and I wondered if she came down to watch him win it. Sure enough I saw her from across the room and waved her over to me. She came over but asked "Who the hell are you, waving me over like that?" and I said "I promised I wouldn't dodge you like I did Maudie." She laughed and said "DUGGLE!" She introduced me to Pauly and we hung out for a few minutes until Mike at PSO called my cell phone from a poker table about 100 feet away and demanded I play at his NL table because they needed players. Felicia (pronounced Fuh-lee-see-uh, who knew?) made fun of me for trying to look important by getting a cell phone call.

I bought in for $300 and began playing WAY OVER MY HEAD POKER. So much for sticking to small stakes. I played $100 NL at the Excalibur, but this was an entirely different deal. But I played smarly aggressive and got up $150 before chasing two consecutive nut flush draws and finishing the game up $25. I was happy to escape with my bankroll intact.

The side games at the Rio during the WSOP are incredible. Early in the day there wasn't a lot of action, maybe a dozen tables, but when we went back there were over a hundred, and all the stars who busted out of the PL Hold Em event were playing. It's fun playing at a table next to Antonio Esfandiari, even if your chips are red and say $5 on them instead of gray and say $500.

We played poker til around 2am and wandered the Casino until they ejected us due to the aforementioned power outage. Highlights were talking to Barry Greenstein, finally meeting FuhLeeSeeUh face to face, talking to Dr. Pauly for a few minutes and figuring out that if I don't stay away from the Craps table, $2/$4 poker is going to be above my bankroll limitations soon!

Monday, June 20, 2005

Vegas Day 1

We arrived in Vegas this afternoon! KingLucky wasn't supposed to come until Wednesday but his trip to Dallas got cancelled so he drove down to OKC and hopped on my plane. It's pretty cool that you can book a flight to Vegas from OKC the day before and still fly for $77.

We started at the Palms but we just messed around there and watched the NBA Playoffs. From there we went to the Orleans and played poker. The deck absolutely assaulted me. I called a raise from the big blind with Q3s and flopped 633. Raised with AK and flopped AA4. I check raised this little old lady out of her last chips when she had AQ.

It all started to go bad when my Aces got cracked by KK who flopped a set. Then I called a raise with Q9s from the small blind and flop JT8. Turn 9, River Q. At least I split when the raiser showed AJs. Called a raise with KQo and flopped two pair, but lost it when an Ace fell on the turn and a Jack came on the river, and T8 took the pot down.

I ended up 22 Big Bets, which is freakish considering the small amount of time we played. The table was pretty tight passive, but even after I told them I never bluff, they still paid me off on big hands, of which there were plenty. It was like telling them was actually a DARE to catch me bluffing. And I never bluffed once. I even laid down the hammer twice.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

What a year!

I started this blog last year in June. I had been reading blogs and decided that I was remiss in not participating myself. I was starting to get into the online poker community, and I really began enjoying the people that are in it. I never imagined that it would grow into this monster that it has. If you had told me last year in July that I would be playing in the World Series of Poker, I'd have said you were crazy.

Yesterday my wife was going through some files with all kinds of paperwork in it. She handed a file to me and asked me to throw out any old paperwork that I didn't think needed to be kept. Among them were cashout receipts from Aztec Riches and The Gaming Club. She looked at the amounts on the sheets and said "If that's how much they sent you, how much did you lose?"

Both receipts were over $500, and I broke the news to her that I bought into both places for $100, and played for less than a month at each. I guess I have kept her pretty much in the dark about my poker progress, and I guess I have done the same with the readers of this blog. I was SHOCKED to read about some bloggers being losing players, because I don't think I am anything special, and I have hit the jackpot with my poker play.

This blog is a GREAT starting poing for my bankroll story, because right after I started it, I cashed out of poker almost completely. I cashed out in the middle of a tournament because I got pissed off. I was ahead about $500 at that point after being down $600 originally, but the $1100 disappeared into the family checking account. In that tournament I eventually made $11.75.

Eleven dollars and seventy-five cents. I never contributed another penny of outside money to my poker bankroll from that point. What have I gotten out of it?

Late last year my comptuer died. I figured it was a poker related expense since that's pretty much all I do with my home computer, so I withdrew $600 from one poker account and bought a new computer.

In December I went on a poker cruise that I won from The cruise was free, but there were a lot of expenses like drinks on the boat, souvenirs and daily spa visits for Mrs. Bogey. This didn't include money for poker cash games. I withdrew $1500 in December.

Other assorted goodies from PokerSourceOnline include my great MP3 player which I love, 5 sets of poker chips, two poker tables, a bunch of poker books and about $320 in cash from referrals.

Poker Source Online has been instrumental in my poker success. I never would have found the incredible fish factories like Pacific Poker or Absolute Poker without them. The extra prizes and the deposit bonuses account for a great deal of my early success in poker. I have parlayed that money into THOUSANDS. When I found out I was limited to poker bankroll only in Vegas, including $1500 for the WSOP buy-in I was disappointed, but it's amazing to think I can cover that buy-in and still have $1000 to gamble with.

But I am most excited about going to Vegas and meeting some of the people I have come to know from this Blog. I hope to meet Pauly, who will be playing in the same WSOP tournament I will be playing. And of course I can't wait to meet Felicia.

The trip should be a blast, and I won't be disappointed to find that I've lost all the money I'm bringing to Vegas. Not even suprised, really.

So here I sit, with $2.25 in my poker accounts. One year in and I am completely broke. (We'll pretend that $2500 in cash waiting for Vegas doesn't exist.) Can I pull off another miracle bankroll from two dollars and twenty-five cents? Even if I can't, I'm WAY ahead of the game, and even if I was really broke, I would have to say it's all been worth it.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Poker Comic #23


Thanks to all

Thanks to everyone that joined in on the Poker Forum Challenge to help out Poker Source Online.

Since I posted a couple of days ago, PSO has jumped up to 125 players and solidly into 5th place in the standings. That's an incredible leap in a couple of days. I have been harassing every poker player I know to sign up, and I hope I have helped the cause at least a little.

125 is still a pretty small number if you consider that PSO is growing towards 10,000 members signed up. Not that many people actually participate in the forums, in fact 125 is probably a lot closer to the day-to-day participating members.

If anyone else wants to help out, just go to Poker Forum Challenge and follow the directions. I appreciate it!!

Excellent Hammer Droppage

I was playing in the Party Poker $5000 Freeroll that begins every day at 6:20pm and starts registering at 4:20pm (hint hint) yesterday. I've played in this thing every day since Tuesday, although yesterday was the first time I made it more than 4 hands into it. (Short and boring stories, I assure you.)

When I play in this, I usually hang out in PSO chat because there are usually some other players in there and it's fun to talk trash and whatnot about other players. It is a PARTY POKER freeroll after all, where you are likely to see the worst players on earth. KingLucky's strategy in these things is "Give them an opportunity to be stupid" and I can't say that's a bad strategy, since they always seem to take advantage of that opportunity.

Yesterday, however, only one person in PSO chat was actually playing in the PP Freeroll. Another was playing in a different Party tourney and one was playing in a tourney at TGC. So there was still some fun chat going on, but only one other player in the same tourney I was in.

When I got moved from my original table, when there were 1100 players left, I got moved to the same table that the other chatting player was at! What are the odds? (I know, 1 in 110.) Still pretty incredible. The player obviously knew me and read my blog, because he said in chat he was going to tell the whole table that if I raise, I have 72!!

So of course, I did! There were like 7 limpers, and I raised from the 150 blind to 600, and every limper folded. I was fairly incredulous, because I was new to the table and this is a PARTY tournament. I guess this table was pretty rocky after all. (I know what you're thinking, are you SURE this was a PARTY tournament?)

When I showed the 72, the absolute BRICK in the seat between me and the other PSO player was pissed. In the time I watched, this guy limped with AKs, AQs and QQ. This was an extremely tight passive player who hated to call raises. I was on the wrong side to take advantage of this, but my PSO buddy wasn't.

I got knocked out after an hour or so when some donkey called my pot sized be on the turn and hit his gutshot on the river. Ugh. (Told you it was a PARTY tournament.) But I got an hour's worth of poker in without spending any of my non-existant bankroll.

And it's 10:30am on a Friday morning and my boss just came in my cube and ORDERED me to be at a poker tournament at a bar at noon, so I gotta take off. My job RULES!

Thursday, June 09, 2005

I'm Broke!

I'm down to about $3 in all my online poker accounts.

I cashed out at almost every room and neteller so I could take the cash to vegas. After a LONG conversation with Mrs. Bogey, there will be no other money spent on this trip. It all has to come from my poker bankroll. Didn't I just buy her all new living room furniture last week? You'd think three huge pieces of suede you can sit on would soften her up a bit. When I even suggested taking some money from savings, I could see her face start to turn red. So that was the end of that. After $1500 for the WSOP event on the 22nd and Wayne Brady Tickets, Plane Tickets and Rental Car for a week, That doesn't leave the huge bankroll I'd imagined. Oh well, $2/$4 is fun, right?

I need a favor from everyone who has an account at Royal Vegas Poker. Please go to Poker Forum Challenge and sign up for the Poker Forum Challenge as a player for Poker Source Online. It's completely free, and you can even play in the freeroll tournament if you want to. I'm going to try, but I'll be in Vegas on that Saturday. We need as many people as we can to sign up to get prize money for PSO. They give it back in the form of another freeroll. You don't have to join PSO. If you don't have an account on Royal Vegas Poker, you can sign up for free and they give you $10 to screw around with just for signing up.

Well, I have 11 days until Vegas, and no money in online poker accounts.....There's a freeroll at Party Poker every day for $5000 that opens at 4:20 Eastern and begins at 6:20 eastern. Unlike every other freeroll party has had, this one doesn't fill up in seconds. I signed up tuesday an hour and a half after it opened. I don't know what they have against west coasters that actually have JOBS, but I guess that's a good thing for those of us who aren't on the west coast and get off work at a decent hour.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Vegas Bound

I just booked my tickets to Vegas. I'll be going on June 19th and returning on June 26th. Eight days in Vegas.

I originally was planning on going from the 20th to the 26th but I saved $50 by going out on Sunday instead of Monday. The rental car cost the same for 8 days instead of 7, and I'm staying with a friend so I didn't have to pay for an extra day for a hotel room.

I'm staying at what looks like corporate housing that a friend has rented through July 16th. Nice looking place with a sauna and a pool. Five bedrooms makes it convenient for him to give me a place. Hopefully there are blackout curtains because I don't plan on sleeping much while it's dark, if you know what I mean.

KingLucky will be coming out on the 22nd, hopefully I am still playing when he arrives so he can root me on from the rail. We make a great casino team, because we both can play for about 48 hours straight. Plus he's splitting the cost of the rental car. Another $75 saved.

And now for the big news, I will be playing in the $1500 NLHE event on June 22nd. It's a very steep price for me and my small time poker play, but I have managed to generate some overlay and I can pay for everything with my poker bankroll, so why not? I'll be able to tell everyone I play poker with that I played in the WSOP. I guess I could tell them that anyway, but this way I WON'T be lying!

All I need to do is finish in the money to make a profit, even if it's just a save. I'm still a "small time poker player in Oklahoma" like the subtitle of this blog says, even though folks like the stripper have made fun of me for that. I do think I have some skills, but like I told my friend RZ, if I get to a final table full of pros, I might as well be playing my cards face up.

I'm going to try and trade percentages with anyone who will take a flying leap and accept mine. Hopefully a blogger or two will play, and hopefully ones who don't think I'm a complete asshole. If there are any.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Phil Hellmuth sucks

The $1,500 buy-in Limit Hold'em event #4 with 1049 players finally had play suspended for the day at a little past 3:00 am. Phil Hellmuth, will not be among those returning. He was eliminated in the 42 spot and received $4,200 in prize money.

Big deal, 42nd place, right?

This is the 48th time Phil the Brat has finished in the money in a WSOP event.

Nobody's ever done that. Not even the folks that have been playing since the seventies.

Nobody has more bracelets than Phil. Nobody has won the main event at a younger age than Phil. Nobody has sustained the level of play over time that Phil has.

Phil Hellmuth is the greatest tournament poker player alive. No matter how much people hate him, it's true.

Friday, June 03, 2005

CSI > Quincy

Here's my favorite play from yesterday. It's a VERY basic play, and everyone should be familiar with it. In fact I would hope it's the first REAL BLUFF that most beginners should learn after they have advanced to rock phase.

***** Hand History for Game 2144270136 *****
30/60 TourneyTexasHTGameTable (NL) (Tournament 12751141) - Thu Jun 02 18:07:30 EDT 2005
Table Table 11589 (Real Money) -- Seat 9 is the button
Total number of players : 10
Seat 1: OklahomaDug (980)
Seat 2: jasonbourque (810)
Seat 3: Tug88 (950)
Seat 4: joez11 (1180)
Seat 5: csk623 (640)
Seat 6: forli145 (300)
Seat 7: Bluebah (675)
Seat 8: h8dafuknrvr (770)
Seat 9: turk90 (820)
Seat 10: bagger79 (875)
bagger79 posts small blind (15)
OklahomaDug posts big blind (30)
** Dealing down cards **
Dealt to OklahomaDug [ 9c, 5d ]
jasonbourque folds.
Tug88 folds.
joez11 folds.
csk623 folds.
forli145 folds.
Bluebah folds.
h8dafuknrvr folds.
turk90 raises (60) to 60
bagger79 calls (45)
OklahomaDug calls (30)
** Dealing Flop ** : [ 8c, 8h, 3s ]
bagger79 checks.
OklahomaDug checks.
turk90 bets (100)
bagger79 folds.
OklahomaDug calls (100)
** Dealing Turn ** : [ Ts ]
OklahomaDug checks.
turk90 checks.
** Dealing River ** : [ 4s ]
OklahomaDug bets (300)
turk90 folds.
** Summary **
Main Pot: 680
Board: [ 8c 8h 3s Ts 4s ]
OklahomaDug balance 1200, bet 460, collected 680, net +220
jasonbourque balance 810, didn't bet (folded)
Tug88 balance 950, didn't bet (folded)
joez11 balance 1180, didn't bet (folded)
csk623 balance 640, didn't bet (folded)
forli145 balance 300, didn't bet (folded)
Bluebah balance 675, didn't bet (folded)
h8dafuknrvr balance 770, didn't bet (folded)
turk90 balance 660, lost 160 (folded)
bagger79 balance 815, lost 60 (folded)

This is why Min Raises Make Baby Jesus Cry. When the small blind called, I had to call 30 to get into a 180 pot. There aren't a lot of hands that are better than 6 to 1 against another. With 95o though I will have to catch perfect to win a showdown, but the raiser is so weak here I don't feel like I have to catch perfect to win the hand.

The most important event for me in the hand was when the small blind folded. I have decided on the flop that I am going to represent an 8. So I have three fears: #1 - The button doubled the blind with A8. #2 The small blind has an 8. #3 The button has Aces or Kings and cannot lay them down.

If #1 were true, then I don't think the button would have bet 100 on the flop. If #2 were true, the SB never would have folded to the bet of 100. So all I need to dodge is #3. When the raiser checks the turn, I'm not afraid of #3 anymore.

The third spade on the river was the complication that I didn't want. But it looks like the button was convinced I had an eight when he insta-folded on my river bet.

There are a lot of basic elements to a bluff that I don't think a lot of beginners consider. I am considering EXACTLY what card I am representing, and whether it is believable that I have that card. I am considering what cards the main opponent might have and whether he is the kind of player that will respond to pressure. I am also considering any other players that might interfere with the play I have in mind.

CSI > Quincy

Last night, in a fit of boredom, I watched an episode of Quincy. UHF is great, isn't it? A 25 year old show on in prime time. Mrs. Bogey has a master's degree in criminal justice. We met in a criminal justice class in college that was taught by a Doctor who was a medical examiner in New York City for over a decade. So any television show that deals with trace evidence and medical examiners is must see TV in our household. Needless to say she loves all the CSI shows, even with all the flaws. "Quincy," aka "Quincy, M.E." is just the 1976 version of CSI. Ironically, it appeared in exactly the same time slot as CSI: Criminal Investigation, the flagship of the CSI family of shows.

The fascinating things to look at between CSI and Quincy are the differences between the shows. The plots are exactly the same. Someone's been murdered, and the ME must find evidence to both find the killer and prove he did the deed.

But in Quicy the producers were much more limited in what they could show, and how they had to deal with the grisly nature of the material they were presenting. There were ZERO bodies on Quincy's examination table. Everything is shot from 12 inches above the table and up, with Jack Klugman and Robert Ito miming extremely fake autopsy moves. At one point Klugman says "I'm going inside," and picks up a scalpel and swishes it just below the frame, supposely opening the victim's chest cavity. Not even slightly convincing, and yet they immediately cut away.

And what did they cut away to? Quincy's boss. I'm trying to remember the character's name. Oh yes, I believe it was "Mid-level government paper-pushing weasel." This guys job is to say something so inanely stupid that people forget that Quincy just sliced, diced and julienned a human being in the other room.

In CSI, you get all the gross details. You get to see inside the victims brains as the bullet penetrates. What a difference between 2005 and 1976! The victims are always layed out on the examining table naked, with their prohibited parts lit so brightly they are burned out of the picture. A brilliant technique to maintain realism and still get past the censors. But there is very little comic relief, and especially not a built in comic relief character like Quincy's boss. The show is very morose, very grim, and extremely depressing.

The laughable part is when they announce before certain episodes that "Parental Discretion is Advised." Shouldn't parental discretion be advised on ALL episodes of CSI, not just the ones that deal with sexual perversion? If you mention a grown man who wears diapers, parents must be warned, but if you have violently graphic details of a human body's destruction, parents should fend for themselves? Silly.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

A difficult offer to refuse

A friend of mine instant messengered me today. He was in Memphis, driving his convertible from the east coast to Vegas. He's coming through Oklahoma City and we're going to have lunch or dinner tomorrow.

In the IM I told him I was thinking about driving to Vegas for the tournament instead of flying so I could have my car out there. Since he is doing it, I thought about doing that too.

He said "Come with me!"

He wanted me to drive with him the rest of the way, then fly back on Sunday.

Man, what an interesting offer. I love to drive, so I know the trip would be fun. But I would have to take Friday off work, which would be difficult, and that is an understatement. But I could stay past Sunday pretty easily, because taking next week off of work would be no problem.

Another huge benefit....I would be there in time to meet a lot of the bloggers....Man, what a temptation.

But my buddy King Lucky already has tickets to go out there on the 22nd, and I don't think I could swing going to Vegas twice in one month, and stay married. I could do one or the other but not both. So I could strand my friend in Vegas alone and blow off the tournament on the 22nd, or I can say no to my other friend and continue as planned.

Very difficult decision, but it looks like Vegas is going to have to wait.