There's just no escape from poker.Playing Ridge Racer last night on the PSP was getting frustrating.To move on to the next tour you must win the last race in the last tour.Mark and I must have had around 20 attempts with no joy before I tried changing our racing car to one with a milder drift.All of a sudden cornering was easier and at higher speed and 1st place was reached within a couple more games.Car selection like table selection at poker is crucial to gaining that extra edge!
Juice wrote in his blog about winning over $100 in a few days but qualified it by saying he's just "hit a few hands".Maybe that was the case but to be honest when you play a patient tight game compared to the rest of the table it sometimes does just feel like you've "hit hands" to win.Logic says that if you see 25% of flops compared to a 50% table average then in general your going to be playing better hands to start with so when they do hit you'll be in an even better postion to make money.I mentioned before that at 6 max I like to limp a lot and maybe thats why I still get action on my big hands but at the low levels I'm at I don't think people pay that much attention anyway.
I've drifted off to sleep for the last few nights struggling to come up with the words to describe my playing strategy.( its thrilling stuff obviously) It's easy to say I play by instinct but the hard part is putting my finger on what guides my instincts.
Maybe this is a good time to delve into the influence smokin' herbs has on my game.First its cards on the table time.( no pun intended!).I do smoke a lot of weed and I feel very very passionately about its legalisation and the hypocrisy that surrounds society and government attitudes to the herb v Alcohol and other drugs.The arguements are all well known and I'm not going to rehash ( boom boom) them here.
In all honesty my game suffers when I don't smoke.I get impatient and start wanting to make things happen too much.I get far too emotional about winning and losing and either try to be too clever or manage to be too dumb without even trying!
After a few smokes I feel as if I can almost tune into the emotions of the table.For example a villan ( nasty one too!) showed a couple of his winning hands which he won without showdown and I questioned why.In my mind everyone starts as even although obviously I'm aware that the shortstacks will usually be looking for action and the large stacks are either good or lucky.
If I see a player showing off a couple of hands ( one was KJ on a J high board) that gives me valuable information.If I know the villan will commit himself with KJ I will not be so worried about trips or 2 pair if I come up against him.I also know that he felt good showing down his two winners and that he's either doing it as he's thought about his table image or has a large poker ego he needs to feed.I'd prefer the 2nd option but I'll pay more attention to try and learn what his angle is.
If there's a big stack does he have a "King of the world" problem? Is he playing well or does he/she over estimate their own abilities? If the latter then thats something else to chip away at.
Betting patterns are obviously vital in NL.I'd rather have 78soooted in late postion and be calling a weak preflop raise with 6 other callers than sitting with AA utg on some occasions.( the occasions the flop comes 778 preferably!). AA tends to win small pots unless up against other big Pocket pairs but in the 78sooted example its an easy fold if the flop misses and a big winner if it hits hard v hands like AA.
Weak bets also mean weak fishy players in my opinion.I like to "bet big or go home" but sometimes huge overbets are just as weak ( gotta sucker 'em in first) and I want to shout a big "thanks" through my screen for them making their monster so obvious.
I'm sure I have many leaks.Maybe I'm bluffed out of pots too easily as ( after a years experience) I've learned that most of the time when players make big bets its because they have a big hand!I like limping but I'd like to be more aggressive preflop sometimes and build bigger pots.
I want to tick along at the table as Mr Anon.No threat to anyone.Folding to big reraises,limping a lot then exploding into life when I feel I have the best of it or when I feel I've been tight enough to be able to make a move ( 6 max) and get respect.If I see a player go from $50 to $25 I want to put myself in his/her shoes and see the next few hands from their point of view.Maybe it wont be full blown tilt but is there a wee touch of it creeping in?
I don't have any information on my avator profile either.None of their damn business if I've been playing for 6 weeks or 60 years.I choose Zagga as a name at Pokerroom partly in hommage to Gazza ( my nickname and football star) and partly because it gave nothing away.
The Edge asked if I'd recommend any Nl books.Zen and the Art of Poker was excellent but my top read would be John Vorhauses "Killer Poker-how to kill the internet game".Mainly for the attitude towards opponents he encourages as much as the rest of his advice.They are the enemy and I will try and adapt like a chameleon into whatever type of player is best suited to taking their money!
Apologies for the rambling nature of this post.Make of it what you will and feel free question any of it!
Please also visit Pokersweethome who I've linked up today and who I've asked to join the Rest of the World for the 'Stars tourneys. Anyone else wanting to play will be more than welcome to join us.
Here's a couple of jokes to lighten the mood.The first one is especially for my ROW colleague AussieDave but I think you'll all like it...
Three Aussies were working on a high-rise building project - Steve,Bruce and Bluey.Steve falls off and is killed instantly.
As the ambulance takes the body away, Bruce says, "Someone should go and tell his wife."
Bluey says, "OK, I'm pretty good at that sensitive stuff, I'll do it."Two hours later, he comes back carrying a case of Fosters beer.
Bruce says,"Where did you get that, Bluey?"
"Steve's wife gave it to me," Bluey replies.
"That's unbelievable, you told the lady her husband was dead and she gave you the beer?"
"Well not exactly," Bluey says. "When she answered the door, I said to her,'You must be Steve's widow'.
She said, 'No, I'm not a widow.'
And I said, 'I'll bet you a case of Fosters you are'."
A blind man enters a Ladies Bar by mistake. He finds his way to a bar stool and orders a drink.
After sitting there for a while, he yells to the bartender, "Hey, do you want to hear a blonde joke?"
The bar immediately falls absolutely quiet.
In a very deep, husky voice, the woman next to him says, "Before you tell that joke, sir, I think it is just fair - giving that you are blind that you should know five things: 1- The bartender is a blonde girl. 2- The bouncer is a blonde girl. 3- I'm a 6 feet tall, 220 lb. blonde woman with a black belt in karate. 4- The woman sitting next to me is blonde and is a professional weight lifter. 5- The lady to your right is a blonde and is a professional wrestler.
Now think about it seriously, Mister. Do you still want to tell that joke?
The blind man thinks for a second, shakes his head, and declares, Nah. Not if I'm going to have to explain it five times.