Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Hump day update

Played in Ladbrokes freeroll last night and bombed out 108th from 844.I was in the BB with 88 and it was folded round to the sb who put in a min raise.I thought it was a steal or a 50/50 at best and as I was sitting 85th I decided to push all in for my last 4k in chips only for the villan to turn up 1010 and knock me out.When I first saw my 88 I told myself to "avoid getting knocked out by a higher pair" but then went and did just that!

Moved to a full ring .50-1 nl game and left $10 up eventually after dropping $20 reloading and winning $30.Someone bluffed me out of a pot at one stage and showed his hand.After I've done the same so often in the last two nights I could only think of that old phrase of what goes around comes around!He was only really showing off to his friend who was a railbird but it did annoy me for about 30 seconds.

Not much else to report from the tables last night.I did lay down a set of fives on a scary board but to be honest the full ring game wasn't too exciting and I ended up 2 tabling for a while.After hours of 6 max is hard to go back to "wait for a monster" mode.

I did finally get to see some WSOP 2005 coverage on Challenge tv but wasn't very impressed.It seems to be aimed at non poker players with more on player profiles than actual play.Then it shows a player going out the tourney but not what the cards were! I usually have the Poker channel on in the background when I'm playing.It shows internet poker but you see the hole cards.Quite a good learning tool when they are showing higher stakes tables.

I've added a couple of new blogger links and removed one who hadn't updated since August.I've also added DoubleA's and Iggy's party pokerblog.I wasn't sure about the etiquette of simply adding bloggers I like to read to my list but can't see that its doing any harm and I hope that if those guys ever stumbled upon my blog they wouldn't mind.

If anyone has been added to my links and wishes removed please just say and it shall be done.The same goes for any other poker bloggers looking to be linked up to this here blog.Just give me a shout and consider it done.

Ok happy hump day everyone.Hope your getting all the humping you can handle....

Monday, November 28, 2005

Somtimes it just aint meant to be...

Maybe I'm sick but I just left the table and laughed for 5 minutes.I'd just sat down in the BB with my $50 when I look up and see 77.Ok nothing to get excited about but I''ll call any raise up to $3 so I know I'm gonna be in a pot until like 7 other times out of eight I miss my set and probably fold unless its headsup and I put him/her on AK/AQ.

Flop comes 8 J 7 rainbow and I'm first to fire.I almost always slow play sets especially if its raised preflop.Gives me the chance to check raise or if the board isn't too scary just call and hope to push the pressure point ( copyright DoubleAs ) after the turn card.

I decide to mix it up and lead out for $4.Possible straight draw on board. I'm hoping he has a high pair.I'm slightly worried though as he has a big stack and you don't tend to get that by making 2*bb raises preflop.JJ was a real possibilty too in my mind but when he raised me to $8 the alarm bells faded into the night ( out the cupboard anyway) and I reraised him to $15 and called when he put me all in.

By now I was hoping for 2 pair ( 78?) but alas the jammy sod had flopped a straight with 910!

Nice hand Sir and cheerio $50..

Well $45 after I won $5 at a .25 table warming up.

Seriously it was funny.I'd left the .25 table having sampled the play just knowing I probably had a years progress on most of the players.I don't think its over arrogance to claim you can beat the 25c tables.Gotta be careful about feeling good about your game.Lady luck has a way of sorting that out.

Still very much a little acorn but while it would always do well to remember that with the luck factor the edge over the fish is still just an edge and not a sledgehammer.

Confidence is fine though and no tilt monster in sight.( not played another hand yet though.)

I can usually handle bad luck its my own bad plays that drive me nuts.

Anyway back to the .25 tables and one example of poor play was when I called from the small blind with 84 off.( 7 callers, it was only 10c).Flop came J 7 4 and I'm about to fold my bottom pair when I see a 25 cent bet called 5 times.I've got a 24% chance to hit 6 outs so I call and hit my 8 on the turn.With so many in the pot I want it now not after someone with A8 hits 2 pair so I bet $2 and win from the preflop raiser who goes all in for his last $2.

Ok I've stopped laughing.I'm away to bang my head off a wall....

ABC Poker?

Watched Rangers lose 2-1 to Hibs yesterday.That's now 8 winless games. The longest run without a win since 1891 and the manager still says there is no crisis! Just go and go now while you still have your dignity.

After that debacle I had a quiet day playing my PSP and just chilling out.Hit the tables about 8 ish and played a wee .10-.20 nl game with Juice.Finished $19 up but will need to be careful not to get complacent at these levels.I get used to all the action of 6 max and the full ring needs a step back and more patient approach.

I've been considering what makes for good poker and what doesn't.When I play at high pot average tables with lots of crazy plays I suppose the skill is in separating the fish from those loose aggressives that know how to play well but it does seem that all I do is play ABC poker simply because that's all thats required to make the most profits.

There is obviously a way to play at most tables and as its usually the opposite to the way the table is playing that's probably why I end up playing the rock at these loose goose tables.

Sometimes I feel like I've almost forgotten how to play and can only play the one type of game.Whether I should complain if that style is profitable I'm not sure.

Perhaps I just need to try and get more used to the money side of the game.I mentioned how I didn't think I played scared at £2-£5 6 max on Sat night but after going back to $.50 nl I can see that there was no way I was at my best and was still playing slightly scared.Considering a year ago $5-$10nl seemed like a game for millionaires I've made some progress in the way I view it but its still hard for me to get my head round the amounts invloved sometimes.I was $500 down at one point on both Friday and Saturday nights.That's £250!!! Thats just short of the mortgage I pay on my flat which I let out.

Like the example I posted before though I suppose its like speeding up to 100 mph in your car then slowing to 70mph.70mph suddenly seems like a slow stroll in the park.

Maybe I should just try and find some more passive tables to run over just for the hell of it.Probably not as profitable but certainly fun.

Finished $75 up at Pokerroom after a couple of false starts but had some damn good fun while I was there.ABC poker usually does the job for me but I messed around a bit trying out a few new things.For example a preflop raiser made the usual continuation bet on an AQ7 rainbow board but as his bet seemed a bit weak I reraised and he folded.Felt great!

The next 5 max table I moved to I decided to try and mess with a few heads and try some stuff out.I raised preflop with 4s5h to $5.Now 4 *bb would be $2 so it was a hefty bet.I get one caller and we see a flop of 7d 8h 9h.I bet $8 and enjoyed showing down my 5 high when the virtual chips came my way.( hey I did have a gutshot straight draw!).

Next hand I get AA and bet $5 peflop and get one caller again.I bet out $25 on a 3 3 K rainbow board and take it down.The bet was high because I was trying to set myself up as a maniac.

On my very next hand I'm in the BB with 5d 3d and call a $1.50 bet for a $1 out of my big blind position.$5.25 already in pot so I'm getting 5-1 for my call and with my new maniac image hitting the flop hard could pay off....

Flop comes Qd 5h 3h giving me a lovely 2 pairs but no room to slow play due to the board.I bet $10 and get one call from the preflop raiser ( QhJh) and reraised to $34.60 by the other caller who fell into my trap and pushed with A9! He was all in but thanks to him I was able to reraise all in myself for my last $45 which Mr QJ called.Now he had tpgk and a flush draw so I could see his logic but an 8d on the turn and an unrequired 5c on the river gave a full house and the pot.

Mr A9 called me a fish and got very upset which was funny so I just wound him up a bit more.

I can see why clever maniacs/loose aggressives can profit from upsetting peoples egos with their betting and forcing mistakes.I'd bet my house that Mr A9 was dribbling with excitement at the thought of showing me his hand if I'd folded to his reraise.

Left not long after for bed $95 up in total and a happy but very tired Acorn.

Who's up for another round of US v ROW poker bloggery tourney goodness this Sunday?

As always all welcome.Same format as last time.9 pm gmt ( 4pm est) at Pokerstars.Watch this space...

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Sunday update

Just a short update today.Got to bed at 8.20am this morning after a 14 hour poker session and my brain feels like treacle.Lost $500 at Ladbrokes and won $400 at Interpoker.Two tabled 6 max nl $1-$2 at Laddys and ended up playing £2-£5 at Interpoker where buying in for £400 and leaving with £646 helped rescue what was looking like a bad night at the tables.

Latest figures are $1075 at Ladbrokes,$1353 at Interpoker and $532 at Pokerroom.I'm also a tiny bit closer to completing Interpokers impossible sign up bonus.( 68% clear ,$200 bonus).

I'm fairly inexperienced at levels higher than $1nl but I enjoyed playing them last night.Got sucked out on a few times by drawing donkeys but didn't feel out my depth too much.The hard part is forgetting the monetary amounts and trying to play the best way every time.I probably don't have the bankroll for $1-$2 and certainly not for £2-£5 but we all gotta take a wee shot every now and then.

Two tabling at $1-$2 nl was probably not a good idea when I'm not used to that level.Obviously I'd picked the craziest highest pot average table so almost any innocent looking pot could soon turn into an all in frenzy.

Here's another pic of my boy Nacho as requested by Juice previously..

the rest of your weekend.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Intergalactic swings

I had another crazy night at the 6 max nl tables last night.Started off by going out of Ladbrokes freeroll tourney after going all in with AK sooted peflop and getting beaten by QQ.I tend to take too many early chances in mtt's and while it was only a freeroll there is $2k in prize money available.

Moved to $1nl and went on a terrible run.AA beaten twice in large pots.Now that was bad but I will need to remember AA is only a top pair and can be laid down.My KK was beaten yet again and this time it was a sickener as I'd got my money in v QK preflop but QK made a straight on the board.For my next trick I moved to a $2nl table and gradually built from $200 to $265 only to lose it all going in preflop with QQ v a loose wild player who had a huge stack and held 99.At Ladbrokes you don't see your opponents cards until after all the board cards have been dealt ( when all in) and when the board came low I thought my QQ was good till I clocked that the 9 on the turn had screwed me for yet another pot where I was favourite when the money went in.

I'd started at the tables at 10pm and this was 4 am so these beats had happened over 6 hours but despite my bankroll having taken a hit I wasn't on tilt or playing badly. I was 2 tabling for most of the night and the later it got the crazier the tables became.

A $2-$4 nl table with an average pot of $240 was my next stop.The play there was just bonkers with huge pots on a regular basis.I tried to stay out the way but not play scared when I did get invloved.I was playing two tables and slowly building my way back up.

At one point I'd been down over $500 but the $2-$4 6 max table saved my bacon.This may be the biggest pot I've ever won.I knew the guy would call because he'd been very unlucky in his previous hand when a flush draw put him all in and had hit when he called with his tptk.

Strange how one of my biggest losers earlier in the night was when my AA lost to trip jacks then later I win in the same situation.

** Game ID 366568496 starting - 2005-11-26 04:42:46
** Harrisville [Hold 'em] (2.00-4.00 No Limit - Cash Game) Real Money

- lars-vegas sitting in seat 2 with $438.50
- RichieBalboa sitting in seat 3 with $1289.51
- Acornman sitting in seat 4 with $443.00 [Dealer]
- naglonaglo sitting in seat 5 with $400.00
- deuce2 sitting in seat 6 with $751.24

naglonaglo posted the small blind - $2.00
deuce2 posted the big blind - $4.00

** Dealing card to Acornman: Jack of Diamonds, Jack of Hearts
lars-vegas folded
RichieBalboa called - $4.00
Acornman called - $4.00
naglonaglo raised - $26.00
deuce2 folded
RichieBalboa folded
Acornman called - $26.00

** Dealing the flop: 10 of Diamonds, Jack of Spades, 6 of Clubs
naglonaglo bet - $32.00
Acornman called - $32.00

** Dealing the turn: 5 of Clubs
naglonaglo checked
Acornman bet - $40.00
naglonaglo raised - $120.00
Acornman raised - $292.00
naglonaglo went all-in - $224.00
Acornman called - $344.00

** Dealing the river: 3 of Diamonds
naglonaglo shows: Ace of Hearts, Ace of Diamonds
Acornman wins $810.00 from the main pot

End of game 366568496

Finished playing at 05.30am.From $520 down to $332 up.My Ladbrokes roll stands at $1575 which is $400 profit between last Sunday and today.I feel as if I've really earned it this week.No wonder I sometimes find it hard to start playing when I first switch my pc on.Keeping a clear ( well as clear as possible after 2 joints per hour!) head and playing well during $800 swings of fortune 'aint easy.

I did do some more reading last night too.Poker blogs and poker forums to try and learn some more about this insane game we all love.

Woke up at 2.30pm today and had missed the EK Thistle game.In the Premier league celt*c lost 1-0 at home which was great but the Champions are still 15 points behind and playing Hibs tomorrow.Like last year when we were behind all season we have to keep believing but with games in Europe to play a comeback in the league will be very tough.

Mrs A will be out at her friends for a few drinks tonight so I'll have the place to myself.I think for a change I may hit up a poker site and play this Texas Holdem game I've heard so much about...

Friday, November 25, 2005

Back on track

Managed to get my game back on track last night.Played for 3 hours and won $138.
I started out at a full ring .50-1nl table at Ladbrokes as I wanted to be sure my head was right before looking at 6 max again.

I think the next time I get KK I should just fold.I reraised a villans bet with KK ( with position on him) and when he bet out on a low flop with 2 diamonds I reraised again and called his all in push instantly.He had AdQd and hit both his flush and his Ace.I was a 60-40 favourite when the money went in but as my KK hasn't held up the last 5 times I wasn't expecting too much and was at least happy with myself for the way I played it.It happened at a frustrating time because I'd built my $100 to $185 and that knocked me back by $60.

I was playing two tables of full ring poker which helped me stay tight and not get into drawing donkey mode.

I then closed 'em down and opened two 6 max .50-1nl tables and had a serious word with myself before sitting down to play.My pep talk to myself seemed to work and I tightened up and started making good decisions again.I called a preflop raise with JJ and folded to a decent size bet on a low ragged flop leaving two others to battle it out before the original preflop raiser won with QQ.That felt good but its funny how when I laid down 1010 the other night and 99 won I felt like a fool but last night I lay down JJ,QQ wins and I feel like a hero!

Don't remember all my big winners but I did have a lucky rush for about 5 hands in a row where I had great starting hands and probably couldn't have hand picked the flop any better.After that I sat tight again and this time the trips were on my side as I took down a big pot when 99 hit a set on a board with an Ace v a preflop raiser.I could only hope he didn't have a pair of Aces but when another A came on the river to give me the full house I prayed he had AK.Ladbrokes doesn't show the mucked hand but I think my guess was good.

I've included a hand below to see what people think.Not much fun just posting everytime AA holds up.I'll never tire of posting or reading winning hammer hands though.

Here's some background information first:

I'd bought into this table for $100 and had won $175 within about 15 minutes of sitting down.Hachem had started with over $400 and I'd taken a chunk of it.I seemed to have good reads on the table and was so pleased with myself I nearly wrote "There's a new Sheriff in town" in the chat box just to wind Hachem up.I know he wasn't happy because he kept raising my blinds or the pot if I limped in.Part of being a smoker means that just made me laugh instead of being annoyed or angry.I found it funny that he obviously felt I'd intruded on his "Table Captain" territory.

He raised a lot preflop but only seemed to push hard postflop when he made a hand but when he did there was no slow playing.I was tempted to call or push in response to his turn bet but KJ just seemed such a strong possibilty that I folded.

He was loose so maybe he only had a flush draw or possibly 2 pairs but I knew he was out to get me and if he'd made the nuts wouldn't hesitate to put me all in if I called his bet.Of course the board could have paired and I wonder if I should have called to see if that would happen.

Weak pathetic fold or great laydown?

Game ID 365656814 starting - 2005-11-25 00:57
** Bey [Hold 'em] (0.501.00 No Limit - Cash Game) Real Money

- Acornman sitting in seat 1 with $275.67
- Hachem sitting in seat 2 with $338.27
- Turbo_sund sitting in seat 3 with $97.32
- izaque sitting in seat 4 with $99.00
- mickemannen sitting in seat 5 with $20.43
- Newtree sitting in seat 6 with $76.51 [Dealer]

Acornman posted the small blind - $0.50
Hachem posted the big blind - $1.00

** Dealing card to Acornman: Queen of Diamonds, Queen of Hearts
Turbo_sund folded
izaque called - $1.00
mickemannen folded
Newtree called - $1.00
Acornman raised - $4.50
Hachem called - $4.50
izaque called - $4.50
Newtree folded

** Dealing the flop: 6 of Spades, Queen of Clubs, 10 of Hearts
Acornman bet - $10.00
Hachem called - $10.00
izaque folded

** Dealing the turn: 9 of Hearts
Acornman bet - $15.00
Hachem raised - $60.00
Acornman folded
Hachem mucks:
Hachem wins $106.50 from the main pot

Its cold in Glasgow ( -1c just now) and it was snowing this morning when I left for work.More snow forecast for the weekend.

Here's a few funnies to start the weekend with.First here's a lovely recipe for Christmas cake.......

You'll need the following: 1 cup of water 1 cup of sugar 4 large brown eggs 2 cups of dried fruit 1 teaspoon of salt 1 cup of brown sugar Lemon juice Nuts 1 bottle of whisky Sample the whisky to check for quality. Take a large bowl. Check the whisky again. To be sure it's the highest quality, pour one level cup and drink. Repeat. Turn on the electric mixer, beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl. Add one teaspoon of sugar and beat again. Make sure the whisky is still OK. Cry another tup. Tune up the mixer. Beat two leggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of dried fruit. Mix on the turner. If the fired druit gets stuck in the beaterers, pry it goose with a drewscriver. Sample the whisky to check for tonsisticity. Next, sift two cups of salt. Or something. Who cares? Check the whisky. Now sift the lemon juice and strain your nuts. Add one table. Spoon the sugar or something. Whatever you can find. Grease the oven. Turn the cake tin to 350 degrees. Don't forget to beat off the turner. Throw the bowl out of the window. Check the whisky again and go to bed.

One for sports fans..

A man had great tickets for the World Cup Final. As he sits down,another man comes down and asks if anyone is sitting in the empty seat next to him. "No," he says. "The seat is empty." "This is incredible!" says the other man. "Who in their right mind would have a seat like this for the World Cup Final, the biggest sporting event, and not use it?" "Well, actually, the seat belongs to me. My wife was supposed to come with me, but she passed away. This is the first World Cup Final we haven't been to together since we got married." "Oh .. I'm sorry to hear that. That's terrible. But couldn't you find someone else, a friend or relative, or even a neighbour to take the seat?" The man shakes his head. "No. They're all at the funeral."

Loved this one...

This test only has the one question, but it's a very important one.
By giving an honest answer, you will discover where you stand morally. The test features an unlikely, completely fictional situation inwhich you will have to make a decision.
Remember that your answer needs to be honest, yet spontaneous.
Please scroll down slowly and give due consideration to each line.You are in Glasgow. There is chaos all around you caused by a hurricane with severe flooding.

This is a flood of biblical proportions.You are a photo journalist working for a major newspaper, and you're caught in themiddle of this epic disaster. The situation is nearly hopeless.You're trying to shoot career-making photos. There are houses andpeople swirling around you...some disappearing under the water.
Nature is unleashing all of its destructive fury. Suddenly you see a man floundering in the water.He is fighting for his life, trying not to be taken down withthe debris.You move closer... somehow the man looks familiar.
You suddenlyrealizewho it is. It's Neil Lennon( celt*c footballer)!At the same time you notice that the raging waters are about totake him under ... forever.
You have the two options:You can save the life of Neil Lennon , or you can shoot a dramatic Pulitzer Prize winning photo,documenting The death of one of the country's leading footballers.
So here's the question, and please give an honest answer: Would you select high contrast colour film, or would you go with the classic simplicity of black and white?

Have a great weekend and be lucky...

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Proud to be a Bluenose

Rangers fine battling performance in Portugal last night is enough to guarantee the Champions European football after Xmas in at least the Uefa Cup and hopefully the Champions league.We drew 1-1 with Porto after one of our young players ( McCormack,19) scored with under 10 minutes left.I found it particularly satisfying because until they changed the kick off times my friend and I went to all the Youth team/reserve games and have talked about how if the boss gave him a chance he'd score goals.Very sweet collecting the £10 from a celt*c supporting workmate who reckoned we'd get beaten 5-0 last night.

Hit the tables after the game and lost $70 through a combination of poor plays,bad cards and lack of concentration as I was listening to the after match stuff on the radio.

Easy to write great stuff about tilt and playing "A" games etc but when you get in a mini rut its too easy not to follow good advice and either start trying to be too fancy,too passive or too aggressive.I will simply need to try and remember the best piece of anti-tilt advice I mentioned a while back and that is simply to "let it go". I won $400 from Nov 13th -20th and have now lost $360 between the 20th and today.

Whilst I wasn't on full blown throw it down the drain tilt I was betting my draws too heavily and generally chasing a bit too much.Accept the $360 is gone.Let it go and start playing well again.

At least I'm a healthy acorn.Free health checks at work and I'm not diabetic.I was 5.9 on the scale thing which is ok ( just had my lunch too which raises score) and my blood pressure is 131/80. I'm 5ft 7,weigh 155 lb ( 11 st 1) and have a BMI of 24.3.

Thanks to Colin at Pokersweethome for agreeing to join the R.O.W blogger team.Look forward to seeing you at Pokerstars for the tourneys.

I was going to propose playing every two weeks to keep things fresh and give everyone plenty of notice for each one.I believe its Thanksgiving weekend in the US this weekend anyway so a breaks probably a good idea.What or who you guys are thanking I'm not sure but any holiday with loads of good food and drink has to be good so if your in the USA have a good one!

Well we're well passed Hump day ( love that name for it) and the weekend is just round the corner.

Here's a couple of wee funnies to be going on with..

Bean there:A coffee-loving resident of Wisconsin, Marg Girard, recalls a java-time incident during her first visit to Scotland.
She says: "A local gentleman friend offered to make me a coffee in his mum's house, asking me how I took it. I replied, 'I like my coffee the same way I like my men'."
At this, the chap favoured his guest with a polite little half-smile, obviously reckoning he'd heard the line before.
However, all-American Marg then continued: "Finely ground and sealed in an airtight container."

Made to measure:EXPAT Donald Bathgate, now in Florence, offers a tale of customer satisfaction, involving a woman who frequented Aberlady's Ship Inn in the good old days before singles and doubles had been adopted as measures for serving whisky. Says Donald: "A dispute arose between a customer who claimed he'd been short-served and the barman who claimed he'd poured a full gill. "The argument dragged on and was becoming heated when the woman – standing at the bar – reached over, grabbed the glass and downed the drink. She then smacked her lips, saying, 'Aye, that wis a gill... ma mooth hauds a gill neat.' "

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Got Married last night...

Yes its true!

" Do you Mr Acornman take thee AJ and KK ( twice) to be your lawful wedded hand,To love and to cherish from this day forward,To have and to hold from this moment forth until busted by trips?"

" I Do".

"And in the presence of the poker gods will you deny the absence of any tilt and blame any losses soley on a cashout curse?"

"I will"

"I now pronounce you $290 worse off.You may kiss the variance bitches ass"

I'm joking about blaming any kind of cashout curse of course.I spent most of last night playing with my Grandson ( Mrs A's older sons wee boy) and trying to stop Nacho trying to lick icecream off his face.

Later on when all was quieter I logged on to Ladbrokes and was up around $8 for 3/4hr play when their server froze.I left the game and site and moved over to Interpokers 6 max tables and bought in for $80.I waited patiently for the BB and picked up AJ as my first hand.

No raises and I check and am delighted to see a 2 7 J rainbow board.I bet and get raised.Now I've no read at all on the villan as I've just joined.My only "read" was that the table was loose so I decided I was good and made a large reraise.When I was reraised back instead of playing my usual cautious game and waiting for a better spot to commit my chips I stuck 'em in and lost to a flopped set of twos.Hmmm nice!

Left and found another table.This time £.50-£1 nl 6 max.I've done this before after a loss and as the £ is worth roughly double the $ a small win at the £ table usually gets me back on track.

Only a few hands in and I get KK in late postition, bet and get reraised.After my run ins with AA recently I wonder if a fold is in order but decide I'm not folding the 2nd best starting hand without seeing a flop and it comes 5 5 J.Villan bets out and I reraise which is called.The dreaded A comes on the turn and I check raise the Villan only to have him make a massive reraise which I fold to.( I was representing the Ace,his reraise told me he had it hence the fold)
Fairly sure he had AK ,JJ or AA.Possibly QQ or 1010 but not as likely.Only guesswork though as once again I'd not been at the table long.

Top up my depleted stack and plod along for 1/2 hour picking up a couple of smallish pots and trying to constantly question myself as to how I'm coping with my bad night so far.The answer I felt was reasonably well.Hmmmm.

Pick up KK again and this time I simply call an average raise from mid postion.I let my previous recent KK experiences cloud my judgement and remember thinking "I'll see a Ace free flop first before pushing hard". I got my wish and pushed hard into another flopped set ( threes) on a J 3 5 board rainbow board.I wish I could say I 'd got my stack in preflop but the truth is when I bet out on a blank turn and was reraised instead of taking stock and reappraising I pushed all in and KK bit the dust again!

As I tried to work out where I'd gone wrong my first thought was simply that variance had caught up with me and these were bad beats.On looking closer though I think while there was an element of bad luck involved but that was not the reason I lost $290.

I read CJ's fine Upforanything blog and enjoyed the most excellent ( Bill n Ted were on again the other night!) posting from Nov 15th about tilt.

"Tilt: An altered state of mind that adversley afects a poker players game".

Having read that and given it some thought I'm certain that I was afflicted by a subtle case of cashout tilt.I had $1235 at Interpoker which was great but it wasn't the $1735 I had before Sundays withdrawl and obviously I'd like to be back to that level asap.Nothing wrong with that but pushing too hard with pockets pairs and TPTK is not how I've built my bankroll so far.
In fact I'd love to have been playing against me last night!

Not going to panic over a losing night.I've still got $2659 online after my $1500 Sunday cashout but I'll need to look even more closely at my own play and mood over the next few sessions.

Apologies again for the disaster that was yesterdays post.The idea was there but writing it up on my lunch hour without writing out some notes first wasn't good.( Glad you liked the jokes though Veneno ).

I mentioned something about "tuning into the emotion" of the table and before last nights loss I had proposed giving an example.I wrote about tuning into the individuals but being aware of the overall table mood is important too. 5 from the 6 players at a 6 max table are in an unraised pot. Board is K Q 7 J 9 rainbow.Checked all the way down and someones who managed to pair their 7 won the hand.

Now nobody at the table is feeling good.We all know if anyone of us had made a stab at it we'd have won it and we're all probably privately berating ourselves for not at least betting the minimum to try and take it.We all know that according to the theory of poker if we could have seen the other players cards we'd have played it differently therefore we've all made a mistake.

The difference is paying attention to see how we all react to that mistake.Does someone now start make bluff steal attempts they weren't making before? Has it changed the table dynamic in any way? Do we all get a badge for honesty?

To jump back to the 3 badly played hands for a moment and just how subtle the tilt was.It was so subtle that it took me back to my days when I started out playing for real just over a year ago.

There are several stages of thought during a hand and I cocked up number two due to being so sure about number one.

1) What do I have?
2) What does he have?
3) What does he think I have?
4) What does he think I think he has?

The other lesson from last night is to try and wait until I have a read on the table before commiting my stack.In the AJ hands I loosely put the villan on J10 or KJ due to the the poor quality of players I usually come up against at that site.I should have read yesterdays post where I mentioned all players starting as even ( average solid by the book) until they start to show otherwise.

Rangers play Porto in Portugal tonight in the Champions league.Our manager is not even drinking in the last chance saloon anymore.He's stumbled into the kebab shop on the way home.
The chairman even says that Mcleish knows who his successor will be if he fails to turn round the dreadful form the team are in.I like Mcleish and his record is good but things have gone stale this season and he should have been replaced weeks ago.

If Rangers pull off a miracle and somehow managed a win tonight we'd be through to the 2nd stage of the Champs league for the first time since it started in the early nineties but its ( sadly) highly unlikely to happen.Nacho Novo,Prso,Buffell,Neito,J Rod and Bernard are all out and Porto are hot favourites.

After last night maybe a wee break from the poker would do no harm either.

Which means I'll probably log on about 10pm.......

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Smokin' poker

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.

Be lucky...

Monday, November 21, 2005

Always Outnumbered,Never Outgunned

There may only have been AussieDave and myself v 6 US bloggers but we fought like tigers and prevailed against the odds to secure yet another victory for the Rest of the World to take a 3-0 lead in the series.

Mrs A was reading her book which gave me an excuse to turn off the tv and use my headset.She even managed to look slightly impressed that I was chatting to folks from Oz and all over America.No more magazine article cuttings about people who run off with folk they meet on the internet I hope!

Really enjoyed the game but was disappointed to finish 2nd after starting the heads up with about a 3-1 chip lead over the non blogger who eventually won.Got my money in once as fav v his all in but I 'd spotted that the villan was a decent player earlier in the match and sadly that read proved correct.

Took out Veneno to win for the R.O.W when my QQ won a race to stay ahead of her AK but it could have gone either way and in some ways despite the US v R.O.W battle I wish she'd been the one to go heads up v the non blogger at the end as that's The Poisons speciality.

Still the R.O.W celebrations went on long into the night ( or morning for Aussie Dave) and the clamour of the worlds press continues today unabated.Appearances on Letterman,The Simpsons and Neighbours to follow...

Don't know if we should aim to make it weekly or every 2 weeks from now on but the Pokerstars $5 entry 18 player format was excellent and I think we've found a home from now on.

Great playing with Y'all!

Headed upstairs for a quick shower afterwards and took Nacho out before hitting a table at Ladbrokes for a wee while.$4 down at a dodgy speed fixed limit table and $5 up at an nl table.The NL table was very juicy for .15-.30nl.Lots of people playing with their egos and an average pot of $13.

Not sure how much poker I will play tonight.Mark will be over for our weekly PlayStation session and besides my poker brain could probably use the rest!

Reading over yesterdays post I hope I didn't come across as too cocky and over confident about my play.I'm aware that a $400 losing night is just round the corner.I'm going to go down $160 one night and hit brick wall after brick wall trying to pull it back.That's variance and I hope I'm ready for it when it comes.Poker has a strange way of giving you a swift boot whenever you start thinking you've got the hang of it.

I don't mean to be negative but I'm naturally quite cynical and while I'm feeling good about my game when I'm at the table ( good reads etc) something at the back of my head keeps saying "its all gonna end soon and reality will strike".I don't mean a $400 bad night.I've no doubt that will happen.So long as I rack up enough winning nights before and afterwards I'm not even going to be too bothered about it.Noone likes to post about a big loss but all I can ask of myself is that I play well and if the poker gods decide my AA will get busted 5 times in a row I'm just gonna have to keep telling myself to play my "A" game and get over it.

Sorry for the Monday blues.Even 3 nights of losing $400 would not cripple my bankroll and so long as its variance and not the tilt monster I lose it to then I won't be too upset.

I know moving up isn't easy and thats why I've decided to stay at levels I'm winning at and I'm comfortable with for just now.I'll also need to develop a more rounded game.Playing one way at loose crazy tables is fine ( and profitable just now) but I need to try and play in different types of games if I'm going to grow as a player.( and an acorn).

Thanks to The Edge for your comment about me being an inspiration.My mother would be proud! Seriously though confidence plays a huge part in poker and any positive feedback on my play/stats/blog etc is always more than welcome.As I'v mentioned before I don't expect to continue being quite as profitable as I've been recently but so long as overall I'm making the right choices most of the time I just have to have faith that the $$$ will follow.

OK heres's a couple of wee snippets from the Herald diary which made me laugh...

Silence is golden: PROPERTY company Cairn Properties recently bought a house for multiple occupation in a quiet residential area of Glasgow, which had the neighbours in a tizz with visions of wild parties and the area deteriorating under a deluge of student bad behaviour. The residents demanded a meeting with Cairn, who quietly explained that the five residents moving in were four Buddhist nuns and a monk. In one of the quickest about-face's the property folk had seen, one of the neighbour's expressed her concern that she and her family might be too noisy for the new neighbours.

Having her fill:A DIARY reader in East Kilbride visited her dentist, who was clearly pregnant, and who announced that she was expecting her third child. The patient commented that three children would be a handful and the pregnant dentist told her: "Yes, I just don't know what got into me."Fortunately, by this time the patient's mouth was wide open so she was unable to deliver a crass reply.

Not sure I get this one but heres goes...

Meanwhile, Nicol Stephen's special adviser, Andy Myles, cornered us to ask: "How do you get 50 Canadians to leave a swimming pool?" When we expressed no knowledge, Andy says: "You ask them, 'Can you please leave the swimming pool?' " before marching off triumphantly – a trifling joke about Canadian good manners we believe, but who are we to eschew such trifles?

Thanks for reading and for anyone wanting to read a far better account of last nights tourney please head to The low limit grinder or Venenos blog.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Cashout Time

I was in a terrible mood yesterday after the game but watching Barcelona put on a footballing masterclass beating Real Madrid 3-0 and winning $140 at the tables later on cheered me up a bit.Mrs A will pop into Ladbrokes to collect her winnings this week.Ronaldinho's goals were so good even the Madrid fans applauded his second one! I don't see that catching on at Rangers v ce*tic games but I have been known to applaud the occasional "wonder goal" by an opposition team at Ibrox.

I've played a few sng's recently to warm up for the tourney at 'Stars tonight.I've played 6 ( all $10 ) and the only time I placed was when I came 2nd in fixed limit tourney I'd entered by mistake.Took me 15 mins to notice it wasn't NL so perhaps I need to pay more attention sometimes!

Played 2 at Pokerroom last night ( $10sng turbos) and bombed out of both.Dropped a quick $6 at a $1 nl full ring before moving to my new spiritual poker home of Ladbrokes.Saw Juice treble his buy in at NL but never said hello due to my stinking mood.Kept his table open though and was pleased to see him do well.

Had a good night at the tables myself and won $162 at Ladbrokes 6 max $.5-1nl.One table at $1-$3 nl had an average pot size of $350 for hours and I enjoyed watching it despite not quite having the balls to sit in! One of the players apparently has such a big bankroll he can afford to raise $25-$40 on almost every hand preflop and wins when he catches his miracle card.I watched a player sit down and reraise Mr Rich from $45 to $150 then go all in with Aces on a seemingly rag flop only for Mr Rich to river a straight.I also watched one player go from $650 to $3.4k against him and several others go broke but for once I stayed clear of a crazy table!

Cashed out $1000 from Ladbrokes today and $500 from Interpoker leaving $1175 at Laddys and $1235 at Interpoker.Got $532 at Pokerroom so I think I've still got enough on line to withstand any major downswings.Most of the cashout money is going to pay off my credit card which has taken a hit recently with car repair bills and the new cooker and window for my flat.I've decided against trying to move up the limits too quickly.

I've made over $2k in 5 weeks and the highest limit I've played is $1.5-$3 6 max nl and while I don't expect to continue at that rate even $500 per month over the next few months would be a great wee bonus on top of my normal monthly pay.I have to give my poker play some credit too.Maybe it will just turn out to be a 3 month upswing but I genuinely don't feel that I'm simply running hot 100% of the time.My AA gets sucked out on just as much as before.( My AA lost to a flopped straight last night).I just feel I cope better when it happens.In a sick way I almost welcome the challenge of dealing with taking a big hit at the start of a nights play and then trying to show the mental toughness to get over it and bounce back.

I didn't even feel I played that well last night and made a couple of mistakes through playing too cautiously.I folded 1010 to a raise and reraise all in and watched 99 beat 77 for a big pot.That was actually at a 0.25-.50nl table and I hadn't paid attention to the drop in standard from .5-1nl.Actually on reading that back maybe it wasn't such an error.In cash games there's always another hand.The AA hand pissed me off because I'd folded AA in a similar situation earlier and I was ahead.Called the reraise this time and was behind.That's poker I suppose.

I'm not sure if there's any one particular secret to my recent upswing.Certainly the switch to 6 max from full ring has helped tremendously.Its far easier to get a read a 6 max and by choosing tables ( I'm gonna mention it again!) with high average pots you can almost afford to pay the blinds and wait for a great hand before commiting a lot of $$.

I checked my Ladbrokes stats since the 15th though and I've seen 46% of flops so maybe I'm not the tightass rock I like to think I am! If I was ever to have a poker nickname though it would probably have to be The Lethal Limper.I like to see cheap flops and then decide how to proceed.For example if you get 99 at 6max you could raise and try and buy the blinds but limp in and once in every 8 times its going to make a set and sets are big money makers.

46% of flops seen,33% won when flop seen,17% of games won and 58% of showdowns are a few stats from my 6 max play over the last 5 days.

Ok time to go and roll up a big yin.I've got a tourney to play at 'Stars in 50 minutes....

Saturday, November 19, 2005

We Are The People

Just back from a 3-0 defeat at the shithole in the Eastend but while I'm gutted at the performance of the team I'm proud to be a Rangers fan today.Our support were absolutely magnificent.Drowned out every IRA song the celt*c fans tried to sing.

3-0 down with 10 minutes to go and we were singing "God save the Queen" so loudly the hairs on my neck were standing up."What a shitey home support" and "No tims in Europe" indeed! ." If only the team on the park could have shown the same fighting spirit.

No Surrender.

On the poker front I won $123 last night after a 7 hour session.Should have gone to bed when I was $260 up but a wins a win.

Thats all folks.

Friday, November 18, 2005

The weekend has landed

Got a load to write about today so as Willwonka would say please fasten your seat belts.I loved that phrase because it sums up my No Limit sessions perfectly.

First some fantastic non poker news.My sister had her 3 month cancer check and is clear which was a real punch the air moment when I got the text as I was driving home last night.Going with her fiancee to the kilt hire shop on Sunday to get fitted out for their wedding next May.

I've only ever worn a kilt once before at another wedding and after a few drinks I'm sure I'll be happy to answer those asking if I'm wearing it in the traditional Scottish manner.( no underwear!).Don't worry I promise not to post the photos...

Before that on Sunday I've got my ticket for the midden/piggery/meccano set/Potato bowl/Scumdome for the Old Firm league game on Saturday 12.30pm.I love going there with 7000 other Gers fans and sticking it to them for 90 mins win,lose or draw.It must be one of the most bitter rivalries in sport and while I've got plenty of cel*ic supporting friends that'll all be forgotten for 90 minutes when the game kicks off.One of these days I'll explain the roots of the hatred that exists between the Champions and them but I don't have a spare month just now!

They do say form goes out the window for these games but the Champions are on such a bad run we aren't expected to get anything from the game.Fight,passion and 100% commitment are the least I expect.We shall see.

I've said before I don't consider myself a gambler but I've put a few ££ on Barcelona to beat Real Madrid in the 2nd biggest football game of the weekend.Its a clever ploy though because I intend to give the betting slip to Mrs A to help make the news that we'll be watching the 'El Gran Clasico' on Sat night at 7pm! I don't usually mind who wins but it should be an amazing game.Viva da Barca!

To the poker and it was yet another night of highs and lows.Bought in for $50 to a 6 max .50-$1 and noticed one player raising almost every pot.Slowed her down a bit when I called her river bet with Ace high and beat her Ace high with my better kicker.I dont play poker with my ego at the table but I had to show I wasn't there to be pushed around either.

I then lost a big hand with KK v AA for the second time in a week followed by my QQ getting busted by a runner runner straight when I got the fish all in with J10 on a 10 8 8 flop.I was not a happy acorn to see the 7 on the turn and 9 on the river but told myself that its moments like that that make or break sessions.Sure I could run into many more bad beats in a row due to variance but so long as I was playing well there was no need to panic.I even replied "lol" to the clown who wrote "ouch" in the chat box after that one.I would never give hand out abuse to the fish as I'd hate the table to think I was still trying to recover from that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach.I prefer to show strength and to have them questioning themselves as to whether they would be dealing with a beat like that aswell as I appeared to be.

I left the table having lost my $50 buy in and in serious contemplation mode and the one thing that struck me was that while I was frustrated at dropping $50 in terms of my overall bankroll it was merely a minor blip and it was a real lightbulb moment for me which drove home the importance of bankroll managment and playing within your roll.No need to chase or get tilty when you have plenty in reserve.Blogging helps too.I've been tempted to take the $500 at Pokerroom and take a shot at $10 or even $20nl but the thought of dropping that in one session and having to explain it here has stopped me so far! I think writing a poker blog has helped my game in a big way.Not as much as reading other blogs but while I may play a couple of loose hands after a bad beat I usually get back on track.Must be a pride thing.

Anyway I bought into another table and finally hit some cards.The main one being when my AA held up v QQ and JJ when we got it all in preflop.I actually posted the AA by mistake last night on my hammer post.I like to cut n paste 'em so I can disect the hand later but didn't mean to leave it on the post.The hammer hand was fantastic and I probably have to thank Juice for it because I'd sat down at a full ring .10-.20nl table with him by then and when I got the 72 at my 6 max table I knew he'd enjoy the tale if it worked.

Left the 6 max table up $95 and made $15 at Juices table for an overall profit of $60 for the night which after the start I had certainly put a smile on my face.

The German market is back in the city centre today so ( apologies to Aussie Dave) I may purchase some more Kangaroo burgers for dinner tonight.They've got wild boar and spring bok too aswell as the famous Aberdeen Angus.I do love my burgers and steaks.

Oh and I mentioned I'd been to see a man about a dog earlier in the week and Juice asked if I was buying a new dog.Well it was another way of saying I scored some fine herbs but I'll need to be careful as they are particularly pungent and while I always smoke n play n reap the benefits when I get a really good batch my bankroll takes a wee hit ( much like me) until I get used to it.

I'll maybe write a more detailed post one day on exactly how I feel it helps my game but for now I'd like to say thanks for reading and good luck at the tables.Hope to see as many folk as possible on Sunday at Pokerstars for the sng tourney....

Tournament Latest

Thanks to all for your tourney feedback.The majority opinion seems to be to go with a Pokerstars $6 ,27 max sng on Sunday at 9pm gmt/4pm est so thats what I think we should go with.A name change to US V R.O.W ( rest of world) seems appropriate as the enthusiasm from the rest of my British friends has been distinctly under whelming!

See you on Yahoo IM around 8.55pm gmt after which we'll all jump into the first 27 sng $6 available from 9pm.

Another Hammmmer!!

Gotta keep believing!

** Game ID 360677178 starting - 2005-11-19 00:34:13
** Santa Cruz [Hold 'em] (0.250.50 No Limit - Cash Game) Real Money

- saint333 sitting in seat 1 with $52.05
- mrnosmoke sitting in seat 2 with $27.30 [Dealer]
- Icefire sitting in seat 3 with $35.62
- Shagga sitting in seat 4 with $49.45
- Acornman sitting in seat 5 with $128.56
- lynas sitting in seat 6 with $11.37

Icefire posted the small blind - $0.25
Shagga posted the big blind - $0.50

** Dealing card to Acornman: 2 of Diamonds, 7 of Hearts
Acornman raised - $1.00
lynas folded
saint333 raised - $1.50
mrnosmoke called - $1.50
Icefire folded
Shagga folded
Acornman called - $1.50

** Dealing the flop: 10 of Hearts, 7 of Diamonds, 7 of Spades
Acornman bet - $2.00
saint333 folded
mrnosmoke called - $2.00

** Dealing the turn: 3 of Hearts
Acornman bet - $8.00
mrnosmoke called - $8.00

** Dealing the river: Ace of Hearts
Acornman bet - $15.00
mrnosmoke folded
Acornman mucks: 2 of Diamonds, 7 of Hearts
Acornman wins $39.00 from the main pot

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Lucky sevens

Thanks to everyone for the tourney feedback received so far.I'm leaning towards Pokerroom as the venue but still open to more feedback.I think Pokerroom allows for a slower blinds structure to be set up which would be good and I'd hope that as its only $5.50 we would be able to attract more players.The Edge asked about any referal codes and stuff and I think Pokerroom runs a "refer a friend" scheme which I'll check out tonight.I've never really bothered with affiliate type stuff on this blog but that doesn't mean I wont have a website to plug soon so look out for that!

To the poker and I didn't start playing until later on last night when I joined Juice at a .10-.20 full ring nl table.Mr Edge was being sensible and just heading off to bed but I didn't get these big bags under my eyes by going to bed at a decent hour and ended up playing till 1am and once again feeling that familiar zombie like feeling when my alarm went off today.

Had a good session and left with a $48 profit.I only really played 4 hands in a big way and won with 3 of them with my 2 pairs of KJ losing to trips 2's in the other.

I detest poker snobbery but Juice had picked a good table with lots of loose fishy players and some of the plays had me laughing out loud.I raise to $2 with QQ and a shortstack reraises all in.The other villan had called my $2 bet but as there was no reraise I thought I was good ( or just ahead in a coin flip v AK) so I reraised to $15 and won a decent pot when the villan called my bet with 77 and my hand held up.

One player went all in with 9c10c for $6 preflop and we had a "don't frighten the fish moment" when someone wrote "All in with 910?" in the chat box and I replied "brave" to which the original questioner wrote "yup" and Juice wrote " no guts,no glory". Made me laugh anyway.

Lots of weak bets preflop and post flop with huge overbets if they'd hit a hand.An ideal table.

I also won a battle with Juice in a hand where I limped on the button with 77 and hit a 10 10 7 flop.A villan bet .80 which was called in 3 places before I decided to call too.10 7 or 10 10 were my only worries but I was almost certain I was ahead.

A 3 of spades on the turn opened up a flush draw possiblity and I was wondering how best to play it when Juice raised the original bettors .80c turn bet to $8.Now if I'd been playing it correctly I'd probably have smooth called hoping to keep both the other players in with me but I reraised Juice to $15 .I probably wasn't being ruthless enough and would have been happy to see Juice fold at this point but when he reraised me all in the gloves were off and I insta called.Wish I had just smooth called now and maybe brought the other villan along for the ride but its not easy playing v friends when you know they are betting into the ( almost) nut hand.

Anyway I did call his all in and beat his A10 with my full house for a nice pot.Unlucky to hit a hand like Juices and lose to a hand like mine but he had thrown a couple insults in Nachos direction and ( fat and stupid!) so I didn't feel too bad as my boy wandered over with his tail wagging to see what the fuss was about!

On another note its very nice of The Edge to ask my advice on NL matters and I appreciate the confidence boost and I'm happy to help but for real quality reading I'd go with Garyc's recommendation and get yourself over to a proven winners blog .

I'd like to think I'm a reasonable player but I'm not kidding myself that selecting weak players and tables to play at means I'm anymore skillful than anyone else round these here parts!

I did note that Garyc mentioned playing with European players is more profitable and its something I mentioned almost jokingly a while back in my "stay away from Americans" post.After 3 months away from playing most of my games at Pokerroom I truly believe that my theory is correct.Go to Ladrokes,Interpoker or any site with few Americans and loads of Euro players and tell me if I'm wrong!

Good luck out there...

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Who's up for Sunday tourney?

Started out playing in Ladbrokes freeroll last night about 8.45pm. No real progress and I got a call which meant I had to nip out to see a man about a dog for 3/4 hour.On my next hand I get The Hammer and push all in only to double up v 66 when I hit my 7.A few hands later I get it again and push all in and "show" when they all folded.Brightened up my evening!

I had 2.2k chips from a 1k start and headed off leaving Mrs A in charge at the table but unsure what to do or how to make a bet.Arrived back 3/4 hour later and from 799 starters we were down to 106 and I ( well Mrs A and I ) were sitting 99th with 1.2k chips.I asked if she'd had any good hands and made any bets but Mrs A said she'd tried but wasn't sure! My instructions were quite basic.All in with any pair 10's or above and all in with AK,AQ and AJ.

I thanked her for her fine efforts and promptly went all in with AJ v QJ and watched as a Q on the river took me down."Maybe you should have let me finish it " says Mrs A....

Logged onto Pokerroom who I notice have now introduced Private tourneys.Played a 5 seat $5 turbo sng and won $17.50 for 1st place in exactly 20 minutes.Not rocket science. My AA v JJ and 78sooooted took out two players and I could only really have thrown it away from there.
My AQ hit an A v the villans 88 in the last hand.

Left PR and moved to a Ladbrokes 6 max table and left $7 up after 20 minutes play.Opened a $.50-$1nl full ring table and picked up Bullets in the sb.I raised to $2.50 and got 2 callers.Bet out $8 on a 6 10 4 rainbow flop and got one caller.Turn was a 3 and I checked hoping to induce a bluff from someone putting me on AK and the villan obliged and bet $9 which I raised to $18 in a flash expecting to take it there and then.I'd faked weakness then reraised him giving away the strength of my hand but the villan moved all in for a few $ more ( the punk made my day) and I called to see an 8 on the river.He showed 9c10c and I took down a fine pot.

Its easy to write about playing every hand as if in isolation but not so easy to do it.I got annoyed at myself a bit later when I had QQ and bet out on a flop with 2 hearts.On the blank turn the villan acted first and bet about 1/3rd of the pot but despite telling myself it was a blocking bet ( ie he bet exactly what he wanted to pay for his flush draw) I only called instead of raising and when he checked another blank on the river I checked too and beat his 7h9h flush draw.My logic for checking the end was that if he had 2 pair he would call and if he had the flush draw I suspected he would fold anyway but while I won the pot I still felt as if I'd played it badly.

It was almost as if after winning with the AA hand I wanted to finish the night well ahead and didn't want to risk losing much.Chicken poker!

Finished the night $79 up in total for only 90 mins play ( excluding freeroll).

Ok I'm off to play some live poker a week on Sunday so thought I'd see how much interest there would be in a tourney this Sunday.I'd be happy to ask Chipper to arrange it for Pokerstars but as the min of $10 put off some of the Brit players what does everyone think about a $5.50 sng at Pokerroom 9pm Gmt? I had a look and setting up a private sng seems quite simple even for an etard like me.

Quick congrats to Aussie Dave on Australia beating Uruguay on penalties to qualify for the World Cup next year.

Please leave me your tourney thoughts....

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Slick smashed

Mark came over last night and we made it onto the Pro-tour on Ridge Racer.He left about 11.45 and I hit the tables for 20 minutes.

It was my first hand and I paid a dead blind of 25c at a full ring table.One limper before me in the cut off seat so I bet $1 with KQ o/s.Button folds and the BB raises to $2 which I'm not too fond of but call for $1.

Flop comes 8 7 K rainbow and Mr Big Blind bets $2 which is called by one other before it gets to me.He's betting $2 into a $7 pot which is an $11 pot by the time it gets to me so while I'm worried about AK I call his weak post flop bet and the turn is a Q which has me doing mini cartwheels in my cupboard.After my AA v Trips the other night I soon calm down and worry that someones made their set but when Mr BB only bets $1 this time and this only gets called by the other player I decide its time to get jiggy and raise it to $10 which only Mr BB calls.He checks a 6 on the river and calls my $9 river bet and shows AK for a smashed slick.

Now sure I got lucky with the Q on the turn but I wouldn't have been there to get lucky if Mr BB had made a pot size bet on the flop.I'd bet preflop and he'd raised so I had to put him on something decent and strangely enough the first hand I tend to put a preflop raiser on is AK.

Left the table 20 minutes later $27 up and a happy Acorn.

Spent £216 getting a new car radiator fitted today.I nearly crashed driving home last night as my eyes were glued to the temp guage waiting for it to go shooting up.The rain was driving down and there was no hard shoulder on parts of the motorway so breaking down wasn't an option.All sorted now.Just got to hope I don't need to spend anymore on the car before Xmas.

Not even begun to have thought about Xmas presents and stuff yet.Dec 23rd is my usual start date but I've also got my Mum and Dads 60th's coming up before then.They're not into surprise parties and not sure what to get my Dad but a real money gift certificate for my mum is a definite!

I tried and failed to presuade my big mate Stu to start playing for real money but he says he's quite happy just playing for fun.I kind of understand that but money won is twice as much fun as money earned and now that I've been playing for real myself for over a year I could never go back to the land of play money.I do enjoy the odd all in 10 times in a row blowout that my millionaire play money status allows but while there may be a certain arrogance I find it hard to view the play money games as real poker.I tried explaining that in many ways .25nl is easier as the play is a bit more predictable.

Ok here's another football clip thats being hotly debated at the moment.Have the patience to get past him putting on his boots.Did he really hit the cross bar 4 times? According to The Sun newspaper he did but I'm still not sure if Nike faked it.Can't wait to see him starring for Brazil in the World Cup next year either way...

Monday, November 14, 2005

$50 Hangover

Had a great night with our friends on Sat night.I almost managed to stay off the tables but did play Ladbrokes freeroll for a couple of hands managing to get all in and all out before Mrs A came down the stairs.( me playing poker whilst friends are in = swift boot in chuckies).

A lazy Sunday was in order and I lay about the house playing on my PSP and not doing much else.My car radiator had been playing up and I think the cooling fins are gubbed.I topped it up last night and there was steam coming from under the bonnet by the time I got into town this morning.Booked it in for tomorrow morning.Can't leave it or I risk my 24v engine being as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike. £200 5 weeks before Xmas.Hmmmm nice!

Hit the tables around 10pm and decided to take it easy at a full ring nl table instead of my usual 6 max.After many hands of nothingness I check my 64 o/s in the BB and my heart starts beating that wee bit quicker when the flop comes 5s 7s 8c.I bet out and get 2 callers.I bet bigger on a blank turn and then I take a brain flip.The river is a spade and its obvious the one caller left has chased his flush ( without odds) and hit so I checked.Or at least I check now when I replay the hand in my head.I bet $17 and he called with his Jack high flush.Doh.I was pretty angry at myself for that.

I managed to hold my tilt monster back but I think folding KJ to two all ins and seeing a J on the river which would have won me a $35 pot tempted him ( my monster) out of hiding.That $35 pot would have brought me even again."You should be level not down" the monster screamed in my ear. My reply of "but it was KJ v 2 all ins and I made a sensible fold" was drowned out by laughter and smirking.

4d5d a few hands later and something snaps.Its my damn turn to hit my flush.If it was good enough for Mr Fishy to win with earlier then the poker gods better ensure I hit my diamond on the turn or river... No diamond.....No buy in left!

$90 down and managed to chuck away a quick $15 at Pokerroom before coming to my senses and going upstairs for a long hot shower using my special anti-tilt shampoo to wash away my self pity.

Back 20 mins later feeling better.Lit a large smoke and bought into two 6 max .25nl tables and ended up down $15 on one and up the same on another.

Closed them both after an hour and opened a .50-1 nl 6 max table with a high average pot.My head was right again and my tilt monster locked away but it was a stroke of luck which stopped this post being titled the $100 hangover.

I get 6s7s and call a $2 raise with 4 others.Flop comes Qc 2c 7d.Preflop raiser bets out $4 and gets raised by a friend of mine.( well he felt like my best friend after the hand).I'm tapping ash into my ashtray and moving my mouse over the fold option when I call by mistake.Preflop raiser folds and there's 2 of us in this pot and only one of us taking it down...

The turn brings a rag 6 and gives me a lucky 2 pairs.I'm considering how to play it when my new friend pushes all in! Now I'd picked my usual loosey goosey crazy table so it wasn't entirely unexpected but what could he have? I'm dead to trips but I don't give him Q7,Q2,Q6.My best guess is that he had top pair on the flop and was defending against the flush draw so I call and his Q9 ( no clubs) remains behind to my 67 two pair.

Now convinced the poker goods were on my side I left Ladbrokes at 01.20am down $36 and feeling like I was back on my best game.Not often I finish a session $50 down overall but feeling good but last night I certainly did.I'd defy any poker player to say they absolutely 100% never ever tilt and to come through it having slain the monster and only $50 down I was relieved more than anything else. Of course like the end of all the best horror films I know the monster isn't quite dead.He's just lurking again waiting for the right conditions to strike me down again.

Watched another player on tilt blame someone else at the table for being a "bot" and taking his money.I was tempted to tell him that going all in with your 3rd reload with J10 soooted and getting beaten has nothing to do with bots but while its car crash poker to watch, tilty players are golddust to the rest of the table and I don't play poker to be nice to people only to take their money.( I even muck monster winning hands like quads for fear of giving away any info to my opponnents!)

Good result for Scotland V USA at the weekend although it was a fairly pedestrian 1-1 draw.Not much point in the US or any other team going to the world cup in Germany next year because England beat Argentina 3-2 in a friendly and if you believe the hype then FIFA may aswell hand them the world cup right now and save all the other teams from having to waste a journey!
One word for any English folks reading this:Brazil!!

Be lucky and never tilt!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Sucker Punch

Started playing last night around 10pm.Apologies to Ladbrokes.I've discovered their "quick search" function does allow you to look for tables based on the average pot size so as usual I picked the largest available.This time it was $35 average pots at .25-.50nl 6 max.Made a couple of mistakes but overall I was pleased with my play and happily reporting to Mrs A that I was $100 up overall for the night.I'd taken a couple of blows like KK losing to AA.The player with AA was a shortstack who went all in and the frustrating part was that I nearly got the big stack along for the ride when I went all in.Bounced back well though and was generally cruising along on auto pilot.

This was at 03.30am and I decided to have one last smoke and a quick go at a $1-$2 nl 6 max table. 2nd hand and I get Pocket Rockets.I'd picked a loose table as always and raised it to $6 which considering the table conditions was actually quite weak.I wont bore you with the action on every street but I lost my $100 buy in to a caller with 44 who hit his set on a K 7 4 rainbow board.No complaints from me.I'd only just joined and had no idea how this villan played.If I'd been a better player maybe I could have laid it down but sets are always very hard to detect and I've made plenty from them myself in the past.I'll call most raises ( not reraises) with any pocket pair just to hit trips.Probably my favourite hand.

Went to bed dead even for 5 1/2 hours play.I'm considering making another cash out from my bankroll.I'd like to move up but I'm finding the low levels between .25 and $3 quite profitable just now and may just stick to them for the time being.

I've got $1796 at Ladbrokes,$1735 at Interpoker and $500 at Pokerroom.Over $4k online and thats after recent cashouts.It really has been an amazing few months for me.

I'm worried about moving up though because I don't honestly feel I have the skills.I should probably thank Iggy for my recent upswing.He's always banging on about playing weaker players.In his latest post he quotes Mike Caro who was asked what the best single piece of poker advice ever posted on the RGP forum was and he replied that the best winning advice is "Play against people who suck worse than you". That advice is solid gold.

There are so many players out there that if your table seems to have good players at it then move to another.At 6 max you really only need 1 or 2 poor players to make a table worth playing at.

Went to the EK Thistle game today.Turned up at 2pm to find out it was a 1pm kick off and the score was 2-2 and both teams were down to 10 men.Finished 5-5 v Thorniewood and I saw EK's midfield enforcer,Vinnie Conway, score with a superb volley from the edge of the 18 yard box after a long pass.Probably one of the best goals I've seen all season.

Scotland V USA kicks off from Hampden park soon so I'll watch that and then look forward to my mate Big Stu ( 6ft 5) and his Mrs coming over.They moved about an hour away nearly a year ago so we don't see as much of them as I'd like.We became friends about 12 years ago when we both started working for Currys electrical store on the same day.We were sent to Newcastle for a weeks training and I slept in and missed my train.I arrived in the class about 12pm but wasn't the latest as Big Stu strolled in 1/2 hour later.Our mutual love for Rangers,playing pool and smoking fine weed has meant we've been good friends ever since.

The clip below shows Zidane ( best player of his generation) joining in a 5 aside football game in France.I wish he'd been on my side when I played fives....

Ok Scotland game about to kick off....

Be lucky at the tables....

Friday, November 11, 2005

Weekend at last

Not much happend last night.Enjoyed chatting to Veneno via IM and had fun setting my bluetooth dongle up so that I can send pictures fro my mobile phone to my pc.First of all I inserted the dongle in the usb port and waited,waited,waited for it to start loading up.This was until I checked the packaging in the bin and found the cd that needs to be loaded.Ok so I put the cd in and it sounds like a helicopter taking off in my cupboard.Just as I'm thinking my cd rom is broken I decide to check it and oooops there were 2 cds in there!

Only logged onto a poker table around 10.30.Found Juice at a .10-.20 limit table but thankfully the chat with himself and Rosie made up for a dull game.We finally moved to an NL table a bit later but Ladbrokes have changed their software and while I like the changes they seem to have removed the "Average pot size" from the lobby.As I may have mentioned several dozen times I feel this stat is vital when selecting a table.I will be writing to Support to see if they can sort this otherwise I think I'll be offski to another site.

Sat down blind at a table and called from the sb with 97.Flop came 6 8 10 rainbow and with about 6 in the pot I raise to .40 to start building the pot.All folded! Maybe I could have given a free card but at a loose crazy table with a high average pot I'd probably have faced a reraise there!

Next I raise with AA and all fold.If I'd been playing alone ( without Juice and Rosie to chat too) I'd have left that table in a flash. A 10c-.20cNL table where most players actually seemed to have a clue! Whatever next! There were still a few fishies and the big stack in particular must have got lucky because he/she was throwing it away just before I left at 1am.( which is far too late to be playing 20c poker on a weeknight).

I lost $8 when I severley overplayed the hammer! How could the poker gods forsake me? I was beaten by a pair of 10's but to be honest the villan seemed weak and a large river reraise may have taken it down.I would have done that but for the chat.I was sure the villans ego wouldn't allow him to fold so I did.

Handed my car in to get new brake pads this morning.Just waiting on the call to say I need new brake discs too.More ££££.

Hopped on a bus and the wee ned/chav at the back in his "sellick" tracksuit was boasting to his mate about how he got the woman at the job centre to fill in all his forms for him by claiming to be dyslexic. He'll go far I'm sure.

There were reports yesterday about Scotland being hit by 80mph winds today.We talked at work about possibly being sent home if it got really bad.

I came in late this morning and told my fellow phone monkeys that the security guard at the front desk had told me it was hardly worth going up to my desk as we'd all be sent home soon.Two colleagues whooped with joy and one asked "really?". "No" I replied.Gave them a second or two of delight anyway but I think it would take a nuclear war before we'd be sent home from here.

Looking forward to getting a copy of the cd Garyc is recording for a few bloggers.I was into country music in a big way a few years ago after playing the CMT was played constantly in the shop I worked in.Music till the cows come home....

Garyc also mentioned another mini bloggers tourney on 'Stars this weekend but after last weeks poor showing from UK bloggers/players I've decided to give it a miss this Sunday.I'll try one last time on Nov 20th and if the response is the same then we can make it Scotland and Australia v The USA or just everyone for themselves in future.Time for some Brits to walk the walk and not just talk the talk.( motivational teamtalk over)

Whatever your doing this weekend be lucky...( unless your part of the US football team playing Scotland in which case the message is ....Take it easy!)

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Black Wednesday

Picked up my weekly steak n chips from Mrs A's work and headed home with Step A to watch the match. We lost 2-0 in a poor game with little of quality on show from either side.Nice to hear the Gers fans still outsinging TGU at the end despite the score.The manager looked a beaten man at the end and Glasgow is rife with speculation over who will replace him.The Laudrup brothers,George Burley,Otmar Hitzfeld,Didier Deschamps and Alan Curbishley are the main contenders.

After the game I played some Ridge Racer and replied to Juices cheeky comment which I 'll return with interest when Chelsea tank Arsenal on Dec 18th.

After checking with myself that I wasn't too gutted from the football result to play poker I logged onto Pokerrooms full ring $1 nl tables intending to do a lot of folding.I managed that quite easily after being dealt one poor hand after another.I was watching the play quite closely and it struck me just how much information people give with their bets at NL. A flop of 9h 9s 4h gets one small bet which is called by one player.Another player puts in a large raise and its blindingly obvious he has a 9.The two others discover that after calling him down on the river.

Another player raises preflop but checks it round on a low ragged flop and turn only to bet a huge amount when a Jack falls on the river.Didn't get to see whether he had JJ or AJ but either way it was clear he'd hit his card.

For all my close attention I wonder if I should be taking better notes.I seem to look for tendencies in players rather than specifics.I have taken more detailed notes in the past at full ring tables. Player x raised utg with KQ etc but with players coming and going so quickly the chances of a confrontation with player x may be so slim it hardly seems worth so much detail.

In my job dealing with complaints and when I did voluntary work previously I'd like to think I have an ability to empathise with people and really try and look at things from their prospective.My point is that specifics about player x's play are not good enough.Its why they made the play that counts.Maybe he doesn't always raise KQ whilst UTG but when he's lost a few pots and down a bit on his buy-in he has a tendency to play like that.

Im my opinion staying in tune with the emotions of opponents is part of the key to reading them or at least getting some clues to their play.

I've not had any high stakes experience but I would guess that there's a much more by the book strategic approach employed by most players whereas at the low levels temperament has much more of an influence.This may contradict my previous ideas of simply playing tight aggressive poker but used together in the long run I think its a winning formula.

I'll use the next hand as an example.I'd watched a player caller "wrecking cue" lose a few pots.Not sure what he'd bought in with but the buy in was $100 and I'd seen him lose at least $20 and he had $43 at the table when we met across the virtual felt.He was playing too many hands and was the only caller before I check in the BB with 97 o/s.

The flop came 6 10 Q rainbow and I check my gutshot and he bets $1.Against most other players I would have folded.I'm not one to chase 4 outs to the river but on thinking about it I realised if I did hit I could take this player for enough of his stack to probably give me the implied odds to call.

Obviously all this is easy to write when the miracle happens and the gutshot hits but hit it did and I was delighted to see a sexy 8 on the turn giving me the straight.I checked and called his $3 bet and on a blank river I actually managed to check to him and then raised his $4 bet to $15 which he called for an $18 net profit.( he had QJ)

So yes I hit an unlikely draw but it was only worth playing due to the current situation the other player was in.

Oh and I say I actually managed to check on the river because thats probably a first for me.I can never seem to resist betting on the river if I feel I'm ahead even if the villan has been betting out on every street.I just knew the guy in the hand above would bet but I hate it when I check and it gets checked behind me.Something to work on because I can see that if a villan does bet the river its not going to be easy to fold when I then reraise whereas if I'd simply bet big it gives him an excuse to fold without such an ego blow.

I had 44 a few hands later and limped in.Flopped quads and called a $2 bet on the flop and turn but gave in and bet the river too hard.Great hand but probably not an easy one to make a lot of money on given that players would have been worried I had one 4 never mind both.

$20 up for 45 minutes play and managed not to avoid tilting which had happened to me before after watching my team lose.

Ok thats enough witterings for one day! Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Hit n Run

First off I got things sorted with Mrs A which was a relief.She started blanking me on Sunday night and I was worried it was because when she arrived home from work I was chatting away to some of my blogger friends.While I admit emotions are not my strong point neither is pussy footing around so I asked her straight out what was wrong and its nothing more complex than nicotine withdrawl.Mrs A has been cigarette free for exactly 4 weeks now and after 30 years of 30 a day is still finding it tough.I knew that but up until Sunday she would at least say "goodnight" "good morning " etc and not totally ignore her beloved acorn!

Looking forward to the big game tonight.The headline in todays football pullout was "The Yanks Are Coming" and talks about how ex Rangers player and USA Captain Claudio Reyna is taking a few of the US squad to see it and how he expects they will never have witnessed anything like it in their lives!To say its passionate wouldn't do the occasion justice.Even if your not a "soccer" fan if you like sports and ever get the chance to see an Old Firm ( Rangers v celt*c ) game I'd recommend it.

I wont be going to Saturdays friendly v USA at Hampden as my local team EK Thistle are playing at home but hopefully Scotland can put up a decent showing and not get cuffed!

Before I get onto the poker I'm going to have a quick rant about another topic that does my nut in.Apparently the Christmas lights in Lambeth,London are to be called "Winter lights" this year so that the name doesn't offend any ethnic minorities.What an absolute joke.Its decisions like that that in my opinion go a long way to creating divides in society not healing them.Who could possibly be offended by calling them Christmas lights? I'm not even deeply religious but this just smacks of the kind of pathetic politically correct nonsense thats all too prevelant in the UK these day

To the poker and I found it interesting that Garyc wrote about instant chat messaging being a distraction.I've found it both a help and a hinderance.I've only just started using it and its been a blast but when chatting constantly my game does suffer.In fact I played a full ring table instead of my usual 6 max for that reason and at one point had AsJs and raised pf when it was checked to me.One caller and when I bet out on an Ac 5h 4h board and was reraised almost all in I realised that I had no idea how my opponent played as I hadn't been watching.Now this would be a difficult position at any time and even paying full attention may not have helped but what if my chat meant I had missed the fact that the villan was a blatant maniac who was always reraising players who raised preflop and always followed through with another bet?

It may only be a small edge but every edge helps.Strangely though when playing a $5 sng whilst chatting to Veneno and AussieDave later I found the chat helped me play a patient game.Maybe because it wasn't so constant but any big hands were discussed and it was great to win with the hammer and be able to chat to people who appreciate the best damn hand in poker!

I've also enjoyed chatting a lot with the London crew at Ladbrokes when playing but generally thats only at .10-.20nl and I usually just keep it simple and don't worry to much about reads.

Played for a short time at Ladbrokes .10-.20nl and lost about $3 before moving to a Pokerroom .50nl full ring table.

I didn't wait for the blind to get to me and was in for 50c when I get dealt 5c7c.2 callers before me and I check.The big stack after me makes it $2 to go and gets 3 callers before the action is on me.Theres $9.25 in the pot and I kind of groan a bit inside as I know I'm going to call for $1.50 and probably fold post flop.I'm mentally ready to drop to $48 from $50. ( hey I'm a tightass I need to prepare for any loss!).

Flop comes a lovely 7h Kd 5d. I reckon I'm ahead but with so many in the pot how long I can stay ahead is uncertain.

One of the callers bets $2 which I raise to $10.The preflop raiser and Mr $2 into an $10.75 pot also calls. Turn is a the 5s and I bet $10 again when its checked to me.Big stack folds and the other villan goes all in for $4.95 when a 6d hits on the river.I call and he shows KhQh and the chips come my way for a $42 net win.

Won another hand about 10 minutes later and left $45 up for 24 minutes work.If only it was like that all the time!

Probably wont play much tonight due to watching the game.

Be lucky...

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

A few Photos

Managed to upload a few pics from my mobile to my Mums pc using a Bluetooth dongle ( yes that is what its called!).

Heres's my boy Nacho and my suggestion for The Edges new mascot.

Below is where I spent most of the evenings on my holiday in Gran Canaria chatting to Mrs A, contemplating the world,smoking fine weed,drinking beer and kickin' ass at Ridge Racer on my PSP.

Below is one of my other favourite views in the world.The view from my season ticket seat in the Copland rear at Ibrox.Home of the Rangers the Scottish Champions.

I'll get my own dongle soon and be able to upload ( or is it download) more photos.At present I don't even own a scanner or a working printer!

A win is a win ( + quiz answers)

Not feeling at my best this week.Yesterday was Grumpy Monday for me.Maybe due to things being a bit frosty between Mrs A and I or maybe its just the long dark nights and not having a holiday booked to look forward to.Rangers poor form never helps my mood either.Sitting on the balcony late at night looking out to sea with a nice smoke and a Bud seems a distant memory now.

Sandy came up last night around 8.30 and I did my best to give him a crash course in No Limit Holdem.I remember my own confusion trying to understand blinds,bets and the dealer button when I started online.It all seemed so damn fast I never thought I'd understand it.I'd bought in to Pokerrooms "Lucky Dollar" tourney and tried to explain my actions as I went along.Fold a lot was my first tip! I played 2 hands in the first 1/2 hour and.QQ and K10 on the button which made trip Kings by the river for a nice pot.The prize money for making the top 160 was poor but as the blinds got higher further in I think my mate could see where the fun lies in steals,making moves and trying to build a stack whilst surviving. He left around 10.30pm and I finished 84th from 1445 starters for a whopping $4 pay day!

I should have gone further but played my last hand like a fool.I called a small raise from the bb with 10h8h and the flop of 9s,Js,Qc gave me a lovely straight.I checked to the preflop raiser expecting a bet at which point I was going all in,villan calls and I double my $23k stack.He checked too and when another spade hit on the turn I decided I was still good and pushed all in.Stupid to risk my whole stack as he called instantly with 7s8s and my flopped straight was drawing dead.

Moved to a Pokerroom 5 max .50 nl game ( $50 buy in) with a high average pot.Soon realised this was because a maniac on $200 was raising up almost every pot.He busted 3 or 4 players and I can see why a player like that can make money v players who play with their ego on the line.Mine cost me $18 after I stayed in with 2nd best pair and folded to a turn bet which would have put me all in.Rebought to $50 and eventually found a hand in big slick.I limped perflop as I knew he would raise for me.Flop came K J 4 rainbow and he bet out,I called and reraised on the blank turn.He folded and the fightback was on.Left after 1/2 hours play and checked my stats to find I'd made 5 cents for my 1/2 hours play! Hey that's an hourly rate of 10 cents or 1/5th of a BB.

Jordan ran a poker questionaire on his blog.Here are my answers....

What is your favorite poker game to play? No Limit Holdem cash games

What is your favorite non-poker gambling game to play? Football betting

What is your favorite casino? Wabash club,Glasgow ( been twice!)

What is your favorite online casino/card room? Was Pokerroom but now Interpoker/Ladbrokes

Who is your top three favorite poker players? Doyle Brunson,Devilfish,Gus Hansen

What poker player best emulates your style? I wish!

What poker player's style would you most like to have? Devilfish

If you could play poker with any 5 professional poker players, living or dead, who would they be? Hellmouth,Devilfish,Amarillo Slim,Doyle and Hansen.

If you could play poker with any 5 people (who do not play poker professionally), living or dead, who would they be? Bill Hicks,Madonna,Dave Gilmour,William Wallace and Ally McCoist.

How often do you play poker? Daily

.Which do you prefer: live poker or online poker, and why? Only played live poker twice but enjoyed it more than online due to the table chat,tells etc

Which do you prefer: tournaments or cash games, and why? 6 max cash game as that's where I feel most comfortable.Not much tourney experience and too much of a tightass to risk losing more than $5 or $10 in a Sng but will buy in for $100-$300 at a cash game without giving it much thought.Hmmm

What is your favorite poker book? Zen and the Art of Poker

Describe the following in a few words:a. Limit Texas Hold'em- Boring,Yawn fest.slow.

No Limit Texas Hold'em- wild rollercoaster ride of cards and emotions

Stud- No experience Omaha- No clue 5-Card Draw- Classic Crazy Pineapple- Don't eat fruit.

I had to add words ( plural) to the last question.How can anyone sum up No limit in one word?! ( ok maybe "wild" would have done).

Thanks for the idea Jordan.

Ok quiet night tonight before the first of two Old Firm games in a row.Both being played at the big meccano set in the East end of the city. First one is the league cup tomorrow night then the league game on Sunday.Wed night could well be the managers last game and about time.Change is needed.They do say form goes out the window when Rangers meet Celt*c.We will see.

Watching Wednesday nights game on tv and got a ticket ( along with 7000 other Gers fans) for Sundays game.Looking forward to our 7000 outsinging their 50000 wether we win,lose or draw.

Good luck at the tables today.

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