Saturday, 29 March 2008

greener grass over there

so anyway, the UK says fuck your Earth day. the first thing we do once we've signed up to green targets is weasel out on them.

let's hope polar bears evolve gills really fucking fast, eh?

Suckout hell 2

You'd laugh if it didn't happen all the time. I guess it goes in cycles and I'm in one of the bad ones.

I have QT. Flop is T86. Other guy pushes. I call.

He has 65. I considered crying when the river came another six.

When you are winning, you shrug this off. But this was ITM. I had a decent stack, and winning this hand would have made me chip leader going into headsup. A great chance to claw back $50.

Still, I had the pleasure of eliminating him. And I won the tourney, and promptly came second in a $20, to begin my upswing. You hear me, god of poker? Time to swing back up now.


Nope. Not listening.

AK, I raise, he calls with ATs. Flops a T and I'm busted.

I shove 1100 chips into BB who just covers me. He calls with KJ. This is like sixhanded, so meh. He flops a J.

If there is a way to river me, you'll river me today. Just call with whatever shit you have. You'll hit. If I have AA and you have 72, get it in on an A52 flop. You will turn and river 2s, trust me.

Suckout hell

OMG. Doomswitch time.

I'm making the right play a ton, but still losing every tourney I play.

Take this hand:

I have 98 in the BB and call a minraise at t50. I know this is a bit loose, but I figure it's worth seeing whether I can outplay someone dumb enough to minraise. He probably has an AJ/99 type of hand.

So it flops Q83 rainbow and I'm pretty sure I'll be ahead. I check, he cbets, I call. The turn is a 6, putting two hearts on the board. He bets half the pot and I CRAI. I know I have him beat.

He calls with AhJh. I am a favourite to win and his call is rubbish, obv., but I wouldn't be writing this post if he didn't river a J.

This is something I find tough to deal with. My decision making is excellent. The preflop call is questionable but my reasoning was sound. I read his hand pretty well and knew I was ahead. But I busted. And my records show eight losing tourneys in a row. You get nothing for having your aces busted (three times in eight games) or for facing a bewildering range of suckouts.

Friday, 28 March 2008

Space for an ace

Why does two pair never hold up? It's a mystery.

I have K5 in the BB. Three guys limp, I check.

Flop is K52 with two hearts. I bet pot.

One caller. Turn is a an ace. Somehow or another, we get it all in. Obv. I know he has an ace, but I'm hoping he hasn't paired his kicker. I'm somewhat surprised to see he has A8, with no hearts.

So the guy called a potsized bet on the flop with no pair, no draw, not a heart in his hand. The 2 paired, obviously, and he busted me.

I try to get into this kind of fish's head. This is how he must be thinking: I have an ace and if I hit it, I'm going to have the best pair possible and will make money. So he calls a bet on the flop because if he hits his ace, he's gold. I think this is what Snyder calls an ace master.

Later in the same session, a guy minraised and I reraised with AK. He called. The flop came A62 or something like that (a board that wouldn't give a str8 draw to ace-rag anyway). I bet, he called. The turn was another 2. I'm clearly no worse off on the turn than I was on the flop, unless he called with K2 or something deranged like that. So I bet again, with the intention of getting it in on the river, he calls again. The river is a K, so I have now caught up with A6 if he has that. I get it in, he calls and shows A3. I am glad I didn't have AQ, because he would have sucked out to a chop, but the hand demonstrates really clearly that the ace master simply doesn't care what you might have. He has hit his ace and now he will be paid.

It seems almost unfair to outkick the poor sod. I wonder how much it will cost him, over his playing career. Because the ace master's model is badly flawed. Yes, top pair will often take the pot heads up, and a pair of aces is a strong hand on most boards, but the guy betting at you is giving you a hint, which it's costly to ignore. And the ace master who got it in against my two pair? Well, the conclusion he will draw is how right he was to think his ace would be good, and he will forget all the times he does not pair his ace, and the times the river does not bail him out when he is up against two pair, and lose mucho money waiting for that ace to come.


I wish I was 10 per cent better at poker. But will I work at it? No. I read articles and posts, watch a video or two and play a little bit. It's not enough.

I have nearly played a thousand $5 STTs. That's not many in the time I've been at it. I beat the level soundly. I also beat $10s pretty decently. I don't have a good sample size, but I feel I am easily beating them. I worry that I only beat these games because I play on PokerRoom a lot. I beat the $6.5s though too. Again, small sample size, but I'm winning.

So I know I win at poker to some degree.

But I need to be a bit better. Not a tremendous amount, but maybe just enough that I can't achieve it.

It's tough to know what the best thing to do to improve is. When you feel like that, you tend not to do anything, which is retarded. Anything would be good, just so long as you're studying/playing. It's just tough to feel any progress. You only feel it long after you've made it.

Part of the problem is that there are several ways to achieve my goals, but each needs a different emphasis. If I could play at 20 per cent at the 22 regulars, or 15 per cent at the 33 regs, I would be there; 15 per cent at the 16s is also good enough, I think, but I'd need to do a ton of tables. But the way to each goal is a bit different.

I never have enough hours. The kids aren't settled till nine most nights, and that's too late to start a long session. Sigh.

Maybe I'm afraid to succeed. If I get there, I could leave this place more easily, and maybe that's a frightening thought for me, sufficiently so that I don't try too hard?