Monday, January 30, 2006

Party Spirit

Mondays eh.Who needs 'em.

Finally got into the Party spirit late last night after a take it easy day with Mrs A.I deposited $100 to enable me to play the $50k UK residents freeroll and hit the tables around 11pm.

I've got no debit card at the moment due to my useless bank.Missed out on being able to deposit at Inter this month for the match bonus.At least I've still got two pending.

I will be cashing out $100 from Pokerroom when my new card arrives to cover my Party adventure so its not "new" money I'm playing with there.

Bought in for $25 at a $25nl ( .15-.25 ) full ring table and managed to double it by the time I left.I quite like the software ,speed of play and even that daft "Congratulations" tune made me laugh the first few times.( not that I heard it that often!).

I checked the bonus page and discovered I'd played 36 of the 100 required hands needed for my $20 bonus.I've never been a bonus chaser.A creature of habit and routine I only played at Pokerroom for nearly my full first year before trying Inter and Ladbrokes both of which have been far more profitable for me than PR.

I'd also been put off bonus chasing by Inters initial sign up $200 bonus which I've only just cleared after 6 months and countless hours of play.However the monthly deposit bonus at Inter is far easier to do and while its only $20 I've done 36 % of Partys after just over an hours play.Made me realise that not all bonuses are so hard to earn and that my laziness and reluctance to shop around has cost me.

Rakeback is something else I've never bothered with.Probably only really for higher limit players but when I look at the $$$ in rake I've paid ( thanks PT) it may be worth looking into.

Not much else today but I did want to mention ( cue long ramble) a hand thats given me food for thought since I played it.

Rewind back to the wee sma' oors of Sunday morning.I was at the table with one player who was acting the maniac.The same guy who had 108 off and bet $29 preflop then called my accidental all in with QJ for another £100.

The above makes him sound like a total idiot and many of his plays were like that but as with all maniacs there's always danger as you can't ever put them on a hand when they have got one.

A few weeks ago when I was feeling really sick of the game I played an hour at the play money tables and blew off some steam going all in on every hand.Then my competitive nature kicked in and while I was still way way too aggressive I slowed slightly and played raise or fold for a while.
The point is that I did notice that while I blew a load of play chips I won big with most of my big hands as I got loads of action.

Now to the hand in question.Remember I'd been playing for 7 hours straight at this point and had recovered from being stuck $120 to being ahead.

I get QcQh and call the maniacs low $3 raise from late postion.The bb and sb both call too.

Flop comes Ts 3h 9h . bb and sb check.Maniac bets £36.

I folded and left the table after the next hand.

Its been bugging me ever since.Every hand should be played correctly and to the best of my ability regardless of other factors yet the truth is I would have reraised ( possibly all in) if I'd still been down for the night but as I was ahead I didn't want to commit to a pot which could wipe out my gains and indeed result in a loss for the night.

He never showed as he mucked which he had been doing up until then and his raise preflop was unusually small for him so I could have been behind to a higher pp 2 pair or trips but chances are I was ahead but too timid to push which tells me I've a long long way to go to be any kind of a player at this game.

I'm very good at handling it when I win big pots at higher levels ( or even low levels with high pot averages) but the thought of losing a car payment etc in a pot still makes me feel ill despite me having a bankroll that can cope with such losses.Easy to say its just chips etc.Read an excellent analogy from The Grinder which compared such situations ( the old play every hand correctly and welcome the bad beats story) to non smokers telling smokers to quit cos its bad for them.Easy to say and easy to agree with but not so easy to actually kick the habit.

Why bother with a 3k bankroll if I'm never going to use it.May as well leave myself $500 online and go from there.

Maybe I shouldn't post every single win/loss and weekly figures.Would that give me more of a long term outlook or would I just lose focus? Not sure.

I am sure this post is long enough! Back Tues or Wed...

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Pot Luck

Played a little poker last night from 11pm till 7am this morning.Started with a £2.50 mtt finishing 71st from 476 ( top 50 paid) before going out quickly in Ladbrokes late night crapshoot.Finished just outside the money in Inter's $3k Gtd ( $11 fee) then headed off to the cash tables.I like tourneys for the change of pace but didn't like losing and starting the night $30 down.

Played .25-.50 and later .50-1nl 6max at Interpoker for most of the night.Didn't play very smartly and ended up staying at tables with decent players for long periods which in the world of online poker is just plain stupid.Playing with better players may improve my game ( and makes bluffing easier) but its not as profitable as playing with idiots.Too often I found myself down a few $$ and not moving as I wanted to prove to myself I could get it back and outplay the villans.Most of the time I did get it back but after a huge run of cold cards and missed flops I was ( including tourney fees) $120 down for the night.

Now I'd like to write that I finished the night $60 up at Inter due to an excellent read on an opponent or an amazing play that stunned the table but the truth is I got very lucky indeed.
I was two tabling at 6.30am.One table ( £.50-£1 nl ) had a crazy player called Imanedda who'd lost about £400 and kept rebuying and making huge bets so like the rest of the table I was biding my time and waiting for a hand to go to war with when I decide to go all in at my other table ( £.25-.50 ) facing a very small stack with what I was sure was the best hand.

I took a long draw on my smoke,smiled and hit the good old all in button....

To my horror I see I've just gone in for £106 at the maniacs table with QJ off after the maniac had raised £29 preflop!

The software showed the cards as we were both all in.He had 10 8 off.Honestly he really did.It seems so crazy I'm tempted to post the hand history to prove it!

Flop came 8 6 6 rainbow and I'm about ready in my cool detached poker state of mind to burst into tears and stick my head through the monitor.Turn is a 9 and no help to either of us.River was a beautiful J giving me top pair and a £200 pot.

Used that to convince myself my luck had turned.Didn't play many pots after that and the table had tightened so it was off to Laddys for a quickie before bed.Won $55 when my AA was ahead pf behind to trips on the flop but rescued with a lucky flush by the river."Nice river" said the villan who tilted off the rest of his stack ( not to me sadly) when I replied "swings and roundabouts " in the chat.I don't chat much but its amazing how a bit of well aimed verbals can throw people well off their game at the low limits.

Party Poker are running another $50k freeroll for UK residents tonight at 7pm.Hope I can make it in this time.

Edit: Made it ok.Out already! 1000 chips to start.I call a 100 raise with 1010 and check my set when it hits on the flop.He bets,I raise,he pushes with QQ and hits a Q on the river.Welcome to Party

Up at 1.55pm today just in time to watch Rangers beat Inverness Caley 3-2 ( 2 more goals for Boyd) to go 3rd in the table.

Sunday figures are Interpoker $1513 Ladbrokes $833 and Pokerroom $717 ( + $174 for week).

Friday, January 27, 2006

By the book

Had another poor night at the tables last night.Started by going out a $5 mtt when 1010 cracked my Nolan sisters on the river and finished by getting the money in with AK on an A 9 9 flop only for Mr Fish to spike an 8 on the turn to go with the 88 he held and take me for another buy in.
Lost $25 at Ladbrokes and $15 at Interpoker before shaking my head and calling it a night.

I was starting to think my streak of bad luck was over but it would seem not despite my small net gains over the last couple of weeks.

Finally bought "The Theory of Poker" today and even reading the first chapter has given me renewed inspiration and made me feel better about my game.I've skimmed through it in book shops before but its nice to have my own copy to read at my leisure and refer back to especially as I've only one more Carl Hiassen book to go.Started another book too but I'm so used to Mr Hiassens genius it seems pretty crap in comparison.

Still no plans to take the break from poker I probably need to freshen up my game and attitude.
Bringing a negative expectation to the table cannot be helping me play well.I'm still being too passive on occasions though I hope I'm recovering from my dog with a bone problem of not being able to lay down a big but obviously beaten hand.Being on the other side of that dog bone problem where I've called a min raise in a multiway ( still 6 max) pot, hit 2 pair or trips and taken out JJ or QQ has helped.

In many ways I can see why people complain about the very low stakes games as its often hard to judge the standard of the oppostion and can be very frustrating when you lose a pot through giving them too much or too little credit.For example last night I folded AQ in a multi-way pot post flop to a raise and an all in only to see the villan with the same AQ hand as me win a decent sized pot with his Ace high.Its sometimes easy after seeing crap like that goes down to start assuming all players at that level are just as bad and the next time a similar situation arises I'll play my unimproved AQ to the river because I've "learned my lesson from last time" and then wonder what happened when it didn't win.

In many respects judging the standard of player at the table is the most crucial aspect of the game at the lowest limits.I've seen players go all in preflop with AJ,KQ or even KJ and while that still goes on at $1nl when 2 or 3 players go all in they are more likely to have top 5 hands.Only more likely not a sure thing because standards can vary greatly.I've found tough ( for me anyway!) 25c games and very soft $2-$5 games in the past.

That brings me back to game selection which until recently has always been a big part of my poker game.In some respects its been good to play in "normal" games instead of the very high average pot size games I used to seek out.Its helped me take a more balanced approach and vary my style a bit.Its also been easier on my poor burned out poker brain but it aint as profitable as my old trick of growing some balls and sitting down with the crazies and playing so tightly I squeak but ( and here's the crucial bit) not being afraid to put my stack on the line if I feel I'm sufficently ahead.

I may be moving up in stakes sooner rather than later after buying a ticket for the Euro lottery rollover with a £100 million prize.( how many bb at .25-.50 is that?).The draw is shortly and if I win I promise to pay all the bloggers ( and Andy the reader!) linked on the right into the main event of the WSOP.Its only a 1/127 million chance so don't book your flight...

Ok thats enough of a ramble for today.Before I go GaryC suggested a ROW v US tourney this Sunday.I can make it but wonder if maybe next weekend ( Sun 29th) would be better as it would give us more time to get the word out.Thoughts?

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Couple of goals

Sat down at a Ladbrokes 6 max table last night feeling very tired and not really in the mood for a game.Won $32 then had a shower and a shave ,came back to the tables feeling refreshed and raring to go .... and finshed down $9.Managed to resist having a go at the fish who said "ty" in the chat after I got him all in post flop holding K10 on a K high board and he called with K3 and hit his 3 on the turn.I was slightly worried about being outkicked but his previous very fishy plays with dodgy kickers convinced me I was ahead when the money went in.Someone else wrote "omg" but it never illicited my most hated poker chat box reply of "wow".

Opened a .25-.50 full ring table and gambled when a short stack who'd pushed and won twice with average hands pushed again.Called with 77 hoping to be slight favourite in a race and lost to his KK.

I mentioned before that I'm not really a goals type of person but when it comes to my poker I need a few things to aim at to keep my focus.Firstly I want to clear the $358 deficit pokertracker shows for my play at Ladbrokes since Dec 20th.While it only represents a month of my play there and not the profits I've made since August it would be nice to reverse the losses that came with my Xmas downswing.

My second goal is to take a break from the game then play more poker! Sounds strange but the truth is I'm feeling a bit bored and burned out and as a result have only been playing for 30-45 mins most nights during the week and even that feels more like I'm doing it out of habit rather than because its a fun hobby I enjoy.Even recent blog entries feel a bit tired,stale and same old same old.

Maybe some live poker is the answer.I'm blue with envy ( I don't do green!) reading about Garyc 's upcoming trip to Vegas and Jordan's Atlantic City plans.A visit to the Wabash club in Glasgows Gorbals area just doesn't quite have the same ring to it...

Ok here's some funnies to help pass the day...

First up are some genuine but poorly named websites...

Consider Who Represents?,a database for agencies to the rich and famous

Want to buy a pen? Check out Pen Island at

Need a therapist?


Italian power comapny:

The latest threats from Osama bin Laden reminds Jim Fitzpatrick of the internet yarn about Osama writing in person to George Bush to show that rumours of his death were wrong. Bush opened the letter and found it contained a short coded message – 370HSSV-0773H. A confused president sent the message to the FBI, the CIA, and the National Security Agency, but none of them could crack the code. Eventually, it was passed on to MI6 in Britain which contacted the White House to tell them the president was holding the message upside down.

Before I go here's a link to a French website that has classic games available including the legendary Street Fighter 2!!

Not sure if this will work but its very funny.Andy Cameron is the guy who goes on the pitch before Rangers games and tries to get the crowd going.He's a good bluenose doing his best but it isn't everyones cup of tea...

Warning: Lots of swearing. f's n c's. Do not open at work.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Wed latest

Ok I like reading poker blogs but if I read the story about the 6 yr old boy who pops his head round the door during Dads game of poker and says "They are both the same" and wins his Dad the hand with 84 sooted just one more time I'm going to need a new monitor to replace the one I put my fist through.

Played a couple of $5 sng's on Pokerroom last night for a change of pace.Came 3rd in the first and 6th in the second and then headed off to Interpokers £.15-.30 6 max tables where I loosened up and took down a few nice pots with bad hands that hit the flop hard mainly due to weak min raises preflop.If you raise 4 -6 bb I'll fold my 95 o/s but I may just call your 25p bet if I'm getting good odds.Easy to get away when I miss but when the flop comes 5 5 10 and you can't get away from your QQ don't start crying.Another benefit of this is that it may be easier to get action on later hands having shown you'd call a raise with rags.

I was up £20 at the table but left £9 up for my 1/2 hours play and hit the sack early at 12.30am.

Feeling good today.I've had a sore neck for a few days.It hurt mainly when I swallowed and after what my sister went through last year the paranoid hypochondriac in me was starting to get very worried about it and feeling lumps and bumps that aren't even there.

Watching some football tonight before possibly hitting the tables later...

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Monsters Under the Bed

Managed to muddy the waters enough to help my workmate out and he thanked me for my help today which is a relief.Thanks for comments.

Played poker at Ladbrokes .10-.20nl full ring with Juice and Rosie late last night and had a blast.I really enjoyed the game and won $15 for my efforts despite playing a couple of hands quite poorly.On my 2nd last hand I limp with KJ from late postion and slow down on a K J 2 flop as I'm fearing the villan has a set of twos.Quite why I feared this I don't know.Possibly failure to spot trips recently led me to be over cautious.

Ended up folding his large river bet when I'd changed my mind and put him on QQ which would have given him a rivered straight.He may have called me down anyway but I was annoyed at myself for not playing it well.

Took a bit of adjustment playing in a full ring game.Rosie mentioned not being ruthless enough sometimes when in hands with players she knows and I can be a bit of a wimp in those situations too.I get 99 and flop a set.Now to be fair the board was a scary 8 9 J but I bet out big and while I'm not adverse to bluffing it must have screamed "stay out my way" and to be honest I was glad Rosie did just that and folded.

All good fun and hit the sack at 1am and lay awake pondering my workmates fate for a while before dropping off.

Almost time to book another break from work.I've 7 days leave to take by the end of March and fancy another week in the sun.Tenerife,Tunisia,Sharm el Sheik and Lanzarote are possible destinations.Roll on.

Spoke to my sis tonight and she's asked me read some poetry ( not my effort from my previous post surprisingly lol ) and I agreed.I offered to do the "Old King Billy had a ten foot willy" poem ( he showed it to the neighbour next door,she thought it was a snake and hit it with a rake and now its only five feet four..) but looks like it'll be slightly more high brow!

I see the hype has started for the film about the life of Johnny Cash "Walk the Line".Out on Feb 3rd and I'm really looking forward to learning more about The Man in Black.Checked out a few clips on the net and it looks good with plenty of his music throughout.

I'll be looking for the poor and beaten down later at the tables....

Monday, January 23, 2006

Tricky Situation ( non poker)

No names but a guy I work with is 6 months into an 18 month final warning.Most lunchtimes me,him and another workmate usually go for a walk round the town to get some fresh air and escape the office for a while.

He had Jury duty a couple of weeks ago.I did it a couple of years ago.You get your letter through the post giving you a reference number then you call the night before to discover if your required at the Court the next day.

Well my mate called, found out he wasn't required and took the day off work.By an amazing coincidence someone else in the same team as him was called up to the same jury but that person came into work after hearing the message stating he wasn't required and my mate is in trouble now for taking an unauthorised day off.

Its been reported "up the line" and his job is now in serious danger.

I got called into his managers office this pm and asked to back up my workmates claim that I had advised him before his jury duty that if you phone at night to check and aren't called up for the next day then you don't need to attend work.

What a situation to be in.If I say I never said that ( which I didn't) then he could lose his job and if I back his claim I could end up having to do so at an Industrial tribunal or least at his disciplinary hearing.

Its not an offence to give someone bad advice and if I thought it would have swung it I may have gone along with it but I'm fairly sure even if I did the company would still say it was my mates resposnsibilty to check the rules himself and not be guided by me.

My sister suggested he asks why his manager never outlined the procedures etc in place when called up for a jury which seems a good point.

I ended up stating I didn't recall saying that to him but that I did say that I was totally confused as to what the rules etc were in that situation.

I'm sure my workmate never meant to put me on the spot and my other workmate says he cannot lie and say he gave the wrong advice either so its not looking good.

Just had to get that off my chest and here's as good a place as any.

$60 up from poker at Labrokes last night and will be looking to hook up with the LBP ( London Blogger Posse) this week at the tables because as Rosie mentioned its been too long.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Poker Poetry

"Wee sleekit, cow'rin, tim'rous beastie,O, what a panic's in thy breastie!" I mutter quietly to myself as I ponder the mistake Mr Fish is about to make by calling my all in with only a couple of outs....

But Mousie, thou art no thy lane,In proving foresight may be vain:
The best-laid schemes o mice an men
Gang aft agley,
An lea'e us nought but grief an pain,For promis'd joy!

Arghhhh fkcukckc **** how did that happen.The jammy lucky mf &&^**&^%!!

Did Rabbie Burns play poker?

Here's one that stuck in my head and is advice from a billionaire on how to make it in life.

If you wanna be rich you son of a bitch
Here's what you gotta do,
Never sit down with a tear or a frown
And paddle your own canoe...

Ok here's a sad effort of my own and the reason why Scotland celebrates Burns night and strangely hasn't got round to holding Acornman nights yet...

Here it is my poker story,
Got the guts,got the glory,
Went the distance,
Now I'm not going to stop,
Just a man and his will to survive.

Possibly certain Balboan tendencies creeping in but if I can change and you can change...maybe we can all change. ( Rocky 4)

Ok take two ( or just take this post and hit delete I hear you say!)

Take poetic advice from Acorn the Bard,
Never all in on a just a high card
Always be calm and you'll walk it

Patience is fine,Just take your time

And hit 'em with Kings in the pocket ( Aces just didnae fit as well!)

Don't play over your head
Or go on when card dead
For that is the road to disaster

Learn every day,how to make the fish pay

Then one day this fine game you will master.

Normal service complete with bad beats,moaning,terrible poker advice,hand histories,too much use of the words "and" and "but" aswell as phrases such as "of course" and "well obviously",plenty of unrequired exclamation marks and of course the usual cute pet pics of my wee doggy Nacho will resume shortly!!!!

Until then thanks for visiting!

Partys over

Yes its true that despite playing online for over a year I've never played a hand at Party Poker.That's about to change as they have been advertising a $50k freeroll for all UK residents opening a new account.Sounds good to me.I'll be downloading the software shortly to take my shot.

Edit: What a load of crap.Never managed to get into the tourney.Registered but it wouldn't let me in.Off to delete the damn party software.What a waste of time.Grrrrr.

Sunday figures are Pokerroom $718, InterPoker $1485 and Ladbrokes $686. + $92 for week.

Only downside is that includes my $200 bonus from Interpoker which I took to a £1-£2nl table and lost.I raise pf with AA,get called by 77 and we both get all in when we hit our sets on the flop.Turn was a 7 giving the villan quads and me nightmares!

Pokertracker is sort of working again though why its only imported Ladbrokes hands from after Dec 20th is a mystery to me.Did Ladbrokes update their software on the 20th and thats the problem? Dunno.Annoying as although there's probably more to learn from bad times it would have been great to have been able to go over some of the big winners I've had since August and try and look into where I got lucky and where I played well.

Watched Starsky and Hutch with Mrs A last night then went through some of my nightmare hands from the last month on Pokertracker.It was actually quite reassuring and has brought some of my recent lost confidence back.I've lost $330 with KK over the last month alone and considering its been my 2nd biggest winner over 34k hands at Pokerroom I can see I really have been on the wrong end of some crappy variance.

Thanks to those who did show an interest in another ROW v US tourney but due to lack of numbers and the Party tourney I'll put the idea to bed for the moment.

Ok Sunday dinner and party poker are calling.....

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Final Countdown

Earned 18 more raked hand bonus points at Interpoker last night leaving only 122 to go for my $200 bonus.Its been a long slog but at long last its nearly done.I'm not going to qualify for Laddys $100k freeroll but will be playing in their $10 mtt to win a trip to Sydney tonight at 7.30 pm.

Lost $12 earning my bonus points.I had just finished reading Tripjax 's excellent post about playing scared when I get AJ at my £.25-.50 6 max table.I call a £2 pf raise and the preflop raiser leads out for 50p after a flop of J 10 6.This gets raised to £1 by another villan and the action is on me in late position.I have tptk and am facing a weak post flop bet and an even weaker reraise.

I actually thought the reraiser may be on a draw ( poss KQ?) and should have trusted my instincts and bet the £8 pot but fear of J10 or a set scared me and I simply called and then called his £2 bet on a blank turn with 3 of us still in the pot.

The river was a 5 and this time the orignal preflop raiser folded to the other villans £5 bet and I called to see him show 10 5 and scop the pot.Nobodys fault but my own due to weak timid play.

Away from the poker our rivals celti*c have signed ex Rangers striker Kenny Miller.First time a player has crossed the divide for 17 years .Rangers sold him because he wasn't good enough and while he has improved I still don't rate him very highly.2 goals from his last 14.Hope that form continues at the Beggardrome for the ratboy Rangers reject.

Couple more snippets from the papers before I go...

Alex McSherry, who is hosting two Burns suppers at Glasgow's Oran Mor, once organised a Burns night in Moscow where the unfortunate Russian chef dropped the haggis as he was being piped in, and it burst open. Alex helped him to scoop the contents off the floor and it was duly addressed. Five years later, Alex was guest speaker at the same event when the same thing happened. Commiserating on the chef's bad luck, Alex learned they had been doing it every year, under the impression that it was part of the ritual.

Our suggestion that it has been a bit wet in Glasgow recently brings forth the comment from a woman, normally residing in sunny California, who wipes the rain from her glasses long enough to ask: "Do you think Scotland is the only country where a weather forecast of 'rain, followed by showers' actually makes sense to the locals?"

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Midas touch

Played for an 1 1/2 hours at Pokerroom last night and made $75 at a full ring .50nl table.

Just one of those sessions where everything seemed to click and the luck was with me.On my 2nd hand I get 99.I call a standard preflop raise from a villan with AK and take his stack on a K 9 6 flop. I did wonder what he thought I had after the hand but realised thats exactly the kind of hand I've been pushing too much recently.

That took me from $50 to $100 and from there I built it to $133 before dropping $8 with some careless play at a .25nl table just before bed.

Here's another wee trick which may work at the nl 6 max tables.I may have mentioned I don't take enough breaks during play and often rush up to top up my pint of water or for a toilet break and I only just make it back in time to bet before the clock runs out.Almost everytime I've noticed if I fold the rest of the table folds.I think this is because they were expecting a bet.
Now I'm a fairly tight player at 6 max and I think they've all mentally given up on their hands as they think I'm thinking about the size of my bet.

It's similar if there are 3 in the pot post flop.If I'm 2nd to act and pause a bit it before checking it can look like I've some kind of hand and a small bet on the turn can take the pot.

All this comes with the usual "it depends" tag and is only to be used in the right situation when playing the right tables with the right table image.

I believe there are tells/reverse tells etc to be had at the virtual table.Reads can be wrong but often you just know the villans taking his time because they are squirming like mad and you can just feel their discomfort seeping through the speakers? When your tuned into the table players that are doing the old "act weak when strong and strong when weak" can be easily sussed out too.This is possibly easier at 6 max where reads are easier to gain than the full ring.

Good news on the Pokertracker front.I downloaded a new version and patch and found all 34k of hands I thought I'd lost forever.Only problem is that it wont let me download anymore due to me having over the 1k trial amount but the email to support I've just sent should sort that out.

Thanks to Tripjax,The President and Jordan for showing interest in another ROW v USA Sng Pokerstars battle.New start time if we can get enough interest will be 11pm Gmt/6pm Est.Cost will be either $6 or $11 max.

All bloggers and readers welcome.More details to follow...

Jordan posted a though provoking piece about coming out of the poker/blogging closet at work and with family and friends.

My take is that I'm not ashamed to be a poker player and I love talking about my fav hobby with anyone who'll listen.My only worry about my manager at work knowing how often I play is that when I submit my RSI claim in a few years I'm going to get laughed at....

The blog on the other hand I don't advertise.I may have mentioned it to a couple of friends but not workmates or family.I'm not ashamed of anything I write about in this space.I may post a lot of intropspective guff but there aint too many secrets. ( I'm just not that interesting!)

My family know my strong views on the weed issue for example and don't have a problem with them or my poker hobby.My Mum even plays now and in many ways I'd love her to read my experiences and hopefully learn something.My Mum and I get on now better than we ever did before.( many clashes when I was in my teens).Despite the above I still think I'd feel restricted somehow if I did give my family my blog addy.

Without going into detail I had the horrible experience of being suspended from work for 3 months due to so called internet abuse a few years back.It was for nothing more than the kind of jokes than get sent around all the time .One was a long list on how to please a woman.The joke was that the how to please a man list read "show up naked with beer".

No porn just jokes that someone somewhere decided in their opinion were "inappropriate".

Went to Tenerife for a weeks holiday 2 days afterwards and I was off for 3 months on full pay worrying about my future before being allowed back after my hearing.

Its made me wary about blog posts from work or even looking at my blog and others from work hence the lack of swearing and reference to smokes and herbs.Jordan asked me how weed affects my play and I answered in a comment rather than a post due to that wee bit of worry about getting in trouble again at work.

I haven't been able to post from work ( lunchtime obviously!) due to a cookie problem which is a pain as I'm quite busy with the family and poker at night but if it allows me to express myself more maybe it'll be for the best even if my posts aren't as regular.

Ok as our friends across the pond would say I think I've written enough already....

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

ROW v US Round 5?

Veneno asked the other day about the next ROW v US bloggers sng and I thought I'd put it out there to see if there's enough interest to give it another go.

$6 Sng at Pokerstars on Sunday 22nd at 10pm Gmt ( 5pm Est) would be the provisional plan.Last time we jumped into a public 27 player Sng at the same time and it worked well.Open to any suggestions apart from changing the format from NL Holdem.All these damn omaha and razz blog posts are confusing the hell outta me!

All bloggers and readers( Andy?) welcome.It would be great if more ROW poker players could play as we've always been greatly outnumbered ( never outgunned!) in the past.We lead the series 3-1 and if we get to 5 I believe we get to choose our own State to keep or use as a timeshare option...

Let me know if your up for it and if you've not played before which side you'll be on.

Not much poker played last night.2 tabled 50c nl full ring tables for 1/2 hour after Mark left and left $3.40 up.

Ok here's a true story from todays paper I liked...

How Ziggy the indiscreet parrot gave a cheating girlfriend the bird: By Alan Hamilton

When the African grey said: 'I love you Gary' in his partner's voice, Chris Taylor became suspicious.

WHEN Chris Taylor’s best friend repeatedly mentioned the name Gary, his suspicions were aroused. He didn’t know a Gary.

And, when the best friend made slurpy kissing noises every time he heard the name Gary on television, Chris wondered if Ziggy was trying to tell him something about some other pretty boy. The penny dropped when, one romantic evening as Mr Taylor cuddled his girlfriend Suzy Collins on the sofa, Ziggy blurted out: “I love you, Gary.”

What gave the game away was that Ziggy spoke the fatal phrase in Ms Collins’s voice. Even by the standards of African grey parrots, Ziggy is a mimic and a half, and from his cage in the corner he had heard every bill and coo of a secret love affair.

A chill ran down Mr Taylor’s spine. He turned to Suzy, whose cheeks had flushed to beetroot. As she dissolved in tears she was forced to admit to a month-long fling with Gary, some of their intimacies conducted in Mr Taylor’s home while he was out at work, but Ziggy wasn’t. She could not deny it; every time her mobile phone had rung, Ziggy had piped up in perfect imitation of her: “Hiya Gary.”

Feathers flew, the relationship was over, and Ms Collins, 25, a call-centre worker, was sent packing that very night from the house in Headingley, Leeds, she had shared with man and bird for a year. That was sad enough, but what is even more heartbreaking is that Mr Taylor has had to part with Ziggy. Hearing the bird constantly squawking the hated name of Gary in the voice of an ex-girlfriend was just too much.

Ziggy has found a new home thanks to the good offices of a local parrot dealer; Mr Taylor, 30, a computer programmer, is adjusting to life on his own. “I wasn’t sorry to see the back of Suzy after what she did, but it really broke my heart to let Ziggy go,” he said yesterday.
“I love him to bits and I really miss having him around, but it was torture hearing him repeat that name over and over again.”

He believes Ziggy was looking after his master’s interests as the bird never really took to Ms Collins, nor she to him. It might have been jealousy, which can flare so easily in a household of two males and one female.

“Ziggy was one in a million; he was a loyal friend, and I have no doubt he was looking out for me,” Mr Taylor said.

The bird was nothing if not multi-talented. He was, according to his former master, a better impressionist than Alistair McGowan, who could exactly imitate Chris’s friends, copy voices from television and radio, and do convincing impersonations of the doorbell, microwave and alarm clock.

Mr Taylor acquired him as a chick eight years ago and named him after the David Bowie character, Ziggy Stardust. He taught the bird to dance while it sang: “Put on your red shoes and dance the blues.”

Ms Collins, who is staying with friends, admitted her fling yesterday but refused to identify Gary.

“I’m not proud of what I did but I’m sure Chris would be the first to admit we were having problems. We had spoken about splitting up several times and I think it was inevitable.”

She added: “I’m surprised to hear he’s got rid of that bloody bird; he spent more time talking to it than he did to me. I couldn’t stand Ziggy, and it looks now the feeling was mutual.”
Not, in her view, a pretty boy, then.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Large Package!

No not a guest post from Mrs A about her wonderful Mr A but the breaking news that Nachos new chew toy has arrived from his dear friends Mr Edge and Juice!

Here's the before and after pics....Add your own captions...

Thanks lads.That's what makes blogging great.You never know when a toy duck will come through the post.

Step A saw what he'd done to it and reckoned he's a murderer.Just add it to the charge sheet...

Played well last night but dropped $40.Lost a buyin ( $50) when I got the villan all in after a flop of K 4 4.He'd raised 4bb preflop and I'd called with AK.He called my all in and when a Q came on the turn I just knew I was beaten and he showed KQ to take the pot.Very frustrating.

Lost another big ( for this level) pot when I made 2 pairs on the river with J10 and called on all in on a ragged board after I'd been betting out.He was in bb and I thought he may have had me beaten with a lucky 2 pair until I made my hand on the river.He had me beaten on the flop with a set of sevens.Not sure if I could have got away from my hand but one thing I will try and do is give my self more thinking time in future.Ok I was sure I was ahead but I called instantly without giving the villans rereaise enough thought.

I suppose part of having a years online poker behind me means I find it easier to look objectively at a session and determine whether I played well based on decisions made and not how much was won or lost although ultimately its the bottom line that counts.

Am I still a newbie? I'm not sure.With just over a year at the tables the obvious answer is yes but I would estimate I've played over 1500 hours of online poker which is the time equivalent of playing a 4 hour session once a week for over 7 years.

Veneno 's post on Sunday mentioend taking her kids to Disney and her wee girl loving the all girl pop band that played.Reminded me of us taking Step A away for a long weekend at Wemyss Bay caravan park.Not quite Disney but they put on shows at night and on the first night we were sat right up the back when the "Dreamgirls" came on stage and danced around in skimpy revealing wee outfits whilst miming to rubbish bubblegum pop.( and yes Step A got the signed poster too).

The next night I made sure we all had an early meal,we headed down to the hall and I made sure we had seats right next to the stage so we could all watch the girls more closely and marvel at their wonderful co-ordination.( hehehe)

Everything goes to plan except for one critical part.It was the Dreamgirls night off and their male equivalent were on.

I looked on disgusted as Mrs A eyed them up as if they were mere objects or pieces of meat.I vowed never to return.Unless I double checked who was going to be on that night first...

Big thanks again to Juice for helping me with my Pokertracker.Looks like I won't have to pay for a new one due to my stupidity and screwing up the last one.

Probably wont play tonight but that feels like I've booked a $55 win.Nice one J.

Here's a couple of snippets to keep you smiling....

Drowned sorrows:
On the morning of a family funeral, a Busby woman told her husband how
worried she was about becoming too upset during the service.Happily, the funeral proved to be a celebration of a life well-lived, with a boisterous wake, much enhanced by a free bar. On returning home very late, the woman was met on the doorstep by her worried husband, inquiring: "How was the service?" In slurred tones, the woman replied: "Terrible – it was three deep at the bar and only two folk were serving."

Instant attraction: Pithy putdowns, continued. Diary stalwart Donald Grant assures us he was in a trendy pub when he overheard a young man-about-town trying to impress a young lady by listing his many skills. He concluded by asserting: "Ah also huv a magnetic personality." Says Donald: "Without even turning her head she dismissed him with the words 'Then, if ah wis you, ah'd steer well clear o' scrapyards'."

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Sunday Morning Coming Down

Yeah I'm not superstitious yet I managed to avoid a post dated Fri 13th..hmmm

Figures update: Interpoker $1488 Ladbrokes $670 Pokerroom $639 Total $2797 ( + $75 for week)

Dropped $60 at Interpoker last night after another marathon session started after watching Rosie play well in Ladbrokes $100k freeroll.

Started at £0.15-.30 6 max then moved up to two table $.50-1nl.Finished at 7.30am this morning and although I'd have liked to have booked a win I also played an hour at $2-$5nl 6max and came out on top.

The main benefit gained from last night though is that I've now completed 96% of my $200 bonus at Interpoker.It requires 4000 points from raked hands.The good news is that once its done I've got a $100 and $90 bonus to clear and they only require 500 and 400 points and wont take anywhere near as long to clear.

I didn't play as much last week apart from this weekend and it feels good to book a minor winning week despite feeling very tired and not at my poker best.

This week I aim to complete the Inter bonus and hopefully play enough hands at Laddys to make the $100k freeroll and do better than I did when I played in it a couple of weeks ago.

Changed my address details on Inter so that my city is now "Sitting out".Still waiting for it to be updated at the tables but it was either that or "all in".No points for originality but it makes me smile.

Here's another wee scam I saw work at the tables. 3 players in the hand.I'll call them A,B and C.

No preflop raises and player A checks post flop.Player B disconnects and auto checks.Player C thinks this is an ideal chance as player A is weak and B not even connected and bets.Player A folds as expected but Player B after letting the clock run down again as if still disconnected suddenly makes a pot size raise on Player C who folds.

Bought a couple more J Cash Cd's yesterday and The very best of Dwight Yokam and had a look to see if any new games caught my eye as I've a Xmas voucher to spend.Almost settled on Pro Evo 5 ( psp) but I may just try and borrow Marks for a bit longer.

Picked up my cousin at 1.30 today and went down to Firpark to see Rangers beat Motherwell 1-0.Not a classic but the 3 points for the win is the main thing.( aside from regaining the feeling in my toes after 1hr 3/4 sat in the freezing cold.)

Mrs A is working tonight and I had planned a wee hours sleep but hey I can sleep when I'm dead!

Off to pop over to see Mrs A and pick up my sweet n sour chicken and chips followed by getting Step A from numpties place.( she goes there at weekends).

After that possibly some poker then an early night.

Offski before I fall asleep on my keyboard....

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Friday 13th? Just another day...

Had my best night in a while at the tables winning $160 in under 2 hours of play.Yesterdays post finally seemed to shake the cobwebs from my game.I realised I've been playing a weak tight game for the last couple of weeks. Weak tight combined with a dangerous inability to laydown anything ( especially top 10 pre-flop hands) down.Scared to bet to put off drawing donkeys.If your convinced the donkey is gonna hit their 2 outer why build a pot for them?

All warped thinking of course and a subtle way to tilt away cash.

The three triggers for this were a costly night of unbelievable bad beats on Xmas eve,missing out on an $800 pot when I folded 88 and would have won with trip 8's and simply playing too much poker when exhausted and not in the mood to play.

By weak tight I mean if I didn't get attached to a hand and bet my stack I would check when I knew I should be raising and never put my opponent under real pressure unless I had the nuts.

I do worry that my poker mood is too manic.One minute I'm happy with my plays and on top of the world and the next I feel sick of poker and like I'm never going to win again which is silly but probably due in part to being so very tired recently after marathon sessions.

Juice mentioned superstition in my comments section yesterday.I always hit the overhead board when leaving the game if Rangers win and like having my lucky signed playing card ( Mr Slim) by my pc but generally I don't believe in stuff like that.I reckon there's no afterlife or ghosts either.Being dead will feel like it did 5 years before I was born and psychics and mediums are just con artists.( who'd make great salesmen no doubt).

Still can't post from work.Message says "page not responding" all the time which is very annoying.I could email my yahoo account from work and then paste it here but I wouldn't want to have to restrict my thoughts due to the fear of the sack over one minor "inappropriate" word etc. Been posting from home recently and enjoyed being able to throw in the odd f word to express myself .Its fuckin' great!

Had 2 big winners last night and here is one of them.I very nearly folded to the raise but when TheOtherside called I decided I was $14 up at the table and would take a gamble to hit my set.
I'd also folded that damn 88 hand to a raise and a reraise and reckoned if I hit it could be juicy.

TheOtherside according to his profile is a UK tv presenter called Richard Orford.No I've never heard of him either but he's in Ladbrokes celebrity profile section.I thought he was a magician after the amazing disappearing act he put on after this hand went down...

** Game ID 402348694 starting - 2006-01-13 00:51:00
** Watlington [Hold 'em] (0.250.50 No Limit - Cash Game) Real Money

- Dunny861 sitting in seat 1 with $53.15 [Dealer]
- Pena82 sitting in seat 2 with $10.21
- kocken13 sitting in seat 3 with $50.40
- Gramm sitting in seat 4 with $49.50
- TheOtherSide sitting in seat 5 with $56.13
- Acornman sitting in seat 6 with $66.30

Pena82 posted the small blind - $0.25
kocken13 posted the big blind - $0.50

** Dealing card to Acornman: 9 of Diamonds, 9 of Spades
Gramm called - $0.50
TheOtherSide raised - $2.50
Acornman called - $2.50 ( Its 5bb but lets call and see how the flop goes)

Pena82 went all-in - $10.21 ( hmm not so keen on that.I'll fold if TOS ( the other side) folds.

kocken13 folded
Gramm folded

TheOtherSide called - $10.46 ( Hmmm what could he have?)

Acornman called - $10.46 ( ok I may be behind but this is .25-.50 so anything is possible.Its Trips or bust on this one and may even be checked down as TOS never reraised which I'd have expected if he had AA or KK.)

** Dealing the flop: 9 of Hearts, 4 of Hearts, 4 of Diamonds

( Ya wee fuckin' dancer! Only 44 has me beat and thats unlikely)

TheOtherSide bet - $10.00

Acornman called - $10.00 ( I got position so I'll let him make the running...for now)

** Dealing the turn: 8 of Clubs
TheOtherSide checked

Acornman checked ( I'll show weakness too and hopefully he'll try and pressure me because of it)

** Dealing the river: Ace of Diamonds ( AA is a worry now but I still feel he would have reraised preflop.AK more likely.Fine by me.

TheOtherSide checked ( hmm.either the Ace didn't help or he hit and is trying to get me to bluff)

Acornman bet - $20.00 ( I'm still ahead and want paid.A nice bet that hopefully will get called)

TheOtherSide went all-in - $35.67 ( bassa has AA.Did I let him catch by checking the turn?)

Acornman called - $35.67 ( ok I tried to look like I was bluffing and he's gone for it.Trust that read.AA was ruled out earlier when no reraise.Trust that instinct too)

TheOtherSide shows: 7 of Spades, 7 of Diamonds
Acornman shows: 9 of Diamonds, 9 of Spades
Pena82 shows: 3 of Diamonds, 3 of Hearts
Acornman wins $30.77 from the main pot
Acornman wins $120.72 from side pot 1

Weekend of rest,relaxation,poker and football ahead.

Here's a couple of funnies from the paper.Have a good one.

"The internet?" interrupted an elderly chap nursing a half in a Glasgow pub as he listened to a couple of youngsters discussing their blog pages. "Infinite monkeys and infinite keyboards – but still no Shakespeare," he added.

Making waves: Our mention of an irony-free Senator Ted Kennedy having a dog called Splash reminds Colum Buchanan of the old Glasgow University Ygorra magazine joke: "Teddy, I think I'm pregnant.""Hush now, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it."

Reap what you sow

Late post today as I'm having problems posting from my usual place.Damn frustrating but not much I can do.The work browser seems to have some kind of cookie problem and when it doesn't my words come up 10 seconds after I type them ( 10 seconds before I think them would be cool) which is driving me nuts.

Anyways first bad news and good news.I've lost my only known non-blogger reader! The good news is Rosie has started her own blog and its well worth a visit. As is the Grinder who was kind enough to add a link to this here blog today.

Second Congrats to Jestocost on winning and to Jordan and Tripjax for organizing it and getting such a fine turnout.Hope to make the next Daddi event in Feb.

Didn't play much poker last night. Is it possible to be on your "A" game at one site and play like a complete donk at another? Strangely I've noticed I can be like this when multi-tabling too.Running over one table with sweet moves and reads whilst playing like complete plonker on the other.

Lost $32 at Ladbrokes 6 max on a hand where we both had the Ace but the villan had a 10 kicker to my 8.Truthfully after the hand I felt it was another tale of bad luck. I mean Ace anything isn't a bad hand at 6 max but when I reflected on it I played it very poorly.I did feel my opponent was weak and made a large reraise on the river but the villan made a good call.

Read The Blogfathers latest excellent post.Some great stuff but the losers song and Poker zone parts caught my eye in particular and are well worth a look.

The Poker zone article mentions concentration and has helped me realise how poor mine has been at the table recently.I'll start the game,play a few hands then go and read a blog or a football site and play when the game pops up.Hell I've even played Ridge Racer on my psp during cash games.

Sure my lucks not been great at times but keep harping on about it and it becomes a self-fufilling prophecy. Played a $5 sng at Pokerroom and ended up all in with 66 v KJ. After a ragged flop Pokerrooms software shows I'm a 76% fav before a King came on the turn and I was out.My first reaction was to smile wistfully in a kind of "well I knew that was going to happen,its just typical recently" but quite frankly thats just pathetic self pity.I was a tiny favourite going into the hand and lost.Not a bad beat in a million years!

In short lack of concentration and poor plays mean I really need a break.Will I take one.Will I fuck!

I will stick to playing at the lowest stakes and play through my crapness.Oh yes.

I did make a quick $7 at Interpokers 6 max table before bed and also made sure I was crashed out by 12.45am last night which is an early night for me and has hopefully gone some way to restoring my usual bright breezy self. ( lol) I certainly more awake today than I have for a while.

Bought Lou Reed's "Transformer" today and nearly "The best of the Beach Boys".I've heard Pet Sounds is brilliant and fancy giving them a proper try.Still can't get The Legend of Johnny Cash off my cd player though.There's not one bad track on it and I could listen to him singing about going to Jackson or being a boy called Sue all day long.

Juice mentioned someone asking him if he was too old to be into young indie bands.( he's 25 lol).

I think one of the great parts of maturing ( turning into an old bassa) is that you don't need to pigeon hole yourself in any walk of life.I can go from Johnny Cash to Eminem to Floyd to trance dance without giving it a thought yet when I was younger and into rock like Guns n Roses and Alice Copper my friends gave me a hard time for also thinking Paul Simon was great.

Maybe I'm schizo but being older I can accept that I'm quite an outgoing person but painfully shy in certain social situations.Possibly I've learned that most of us are a mass of contradictions and that they don't all need explaining or justifying.

Ok no more whinging about luck.( see a real bad beat story at Iggys blog!).

Yes its a factor but not as much as skill and emotional control.Now go reap what you sow....

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Talkin' Turkey

Hit the Laddys tables 10 minutes before the $10 late night crapshoot tourney started and won a couple of $$ towards the fee.
Doubled up on a couple of hands quite early on before the moment that cost me.My 77 hit a 7 on the river to give me a full house ( 2 Aces on the board) but you only get 10 seconds to act and my dithering over my bet size meant the next thing I see in the chat box is “Acornman took too long and was folded”. Steamed a bit after that and didn’t get too much further.

Started at a .25nl 6 max table but didn’t like the table so I moved to my new home at Interpokers 15p-30p nl 6 max table.Bought in for £20 and made £15 within 45 minutes and headed off to bed.

These 15p-30p tables are very juicy indeed as they are the lowest possible £ tables available. I feel after over a year of play and profits I should be playing for higher stakes but after recent knocks I’m just looking to get my game back on track and rack up a few winning nights in a row without over doing it and burning myself out through sheer boredom and exhaustion.

If I play tonight that’s probably where I’ll be.Ladbrokes have another $100k freeroll this weekend for 500 raked hands completed by Thus midnight.I have 200 and would love another crack at it and could probably make it by 2 tabling .50-1nl 6 max but really don’t have the motivation to do that over the next two nights.

I hate the Nanny State this country is becoming.My work have given advice to people travelling to Turkey in light of the bird flu cases there.At number 3 on the list is “Avoid contact with surfaces or water contaminated by animal faeces” followed by the sage advice that employees should “Not attempt to bring any live poultry products back to the UK”.

No more using the shit slide at the local fun park if we go back to Turkey then…

Mrs A and I are looking at going away again before the end of March.I have 7 days holidays left and I ain’t afraid to use them.

We’d love to go to back to Egypt again but Amsterdam and Prague are other possibilities.

Here’s a couple of funnies to be going on with…

A Glasgow mother promised her five-year-old daughter a trip to the cinema during the festive period. "What would you like to see?" asked mummy. The child's reply was instantaneous: "The Lying Bitch and the Wardrobe."

Going radio rental:
WE understand that the sports reporter from Radio Clyde's second station telephoned Celtic manager Gordon Strachan for a comment after Sunday's defeat only to have the phone slammed down on him. It seems he only managed to get as far as saying "Clyde 2" when the line went dead.

And reader Raymond Lowe clears up the controversy over Celtic player Stephen Pearson allegedly singing "IRA" at a supporters' club function. Detailed analysis of the recording shows that Pearson was merely chanting: "I want away."

Good luck to all in the Dadi tourney tonight.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


Picked up my Chow mein on the way home last night and read a few blogs before Mark came round with the new PSP he bought for his boy for Xmas.We tried to hook them up for a wirless battle at Ridge Racer but our machines wouldn’t link up.He’s lent me Pro Evo 5 for a week and its brilliant.Very easy to play and looks great even on such a small screen.

Mark left about 11.45pm and as I quite fancied a wee game of poker I jumped onto an Interpoker £.15-.30 nl 6 max table for an hour of play before bed.I only played because I actually felt like playing though and took some pressure off myself by simply concentrating on making the right plays in every situation and not pushing too hard.

I bought in for £20 ( aprox $35) and was just about to leave after nearly an hour with a £10 profit and not much too report when after muchos folding I finally start hitting a wee run against some quite poor opponents who do strange things! One villan had a habit of betting 25p ( pence) on every street post flop if he’d connected in any way.Didn’t matter if he flopped quads or bottom pair he’d bet 25p.

Anyway my last smoke was burning down to its roach and I was ready to call it a night happy to be ahead when I get KK in late position and bet 4bb ( £1.20).Now you would think a few alarm bells would be going off because the truth is I’d been watching a video clip of one of Rangers great players strutting his stuff and hadn’t played a hand in the last 10-15 minutes never mind raised it up to 4bb.That being the case I got 5 callers.I actually laughed out loud at that and it wasn’t a fit of the giggles due to the smoking.

Edited Jan13th after mistake pointed out by Andy.Thanks again mate.

Flop came 4 7 Q with two hearts and neither of my Kings was a heart.The usual 25p villan bet out and I raised it up to a pot size bet.Mr 25p folded and and the other remaining villan called my pot size bet.

The turn brought another heart and mine sank a little.I bet out £8 and when I was called again I was sure I was behind and looking at yet another sorry tale of woe.

The river delivered another heart.The King of hearts but by that time I truly thought ( as we say in Scotland) the games a bogey.I bet £5 of my remaining £8.74 and the villan puts me all in for another £3.74.

It was an obvious crying call.While you never want to call when beaten calling for £3.74 into a by now decent sized pot is a no brainer.I can never understand people who fold for a last bet of say 10% of the pot.You’d only need to win 2 out of 10 times to make it worthwhile.( or ev+ if we’re being all fancy about it).

I call and nearly fall off my seat when my set of Kings beats the villans set of Queen without a heart between us.( anyone know a good wizard?)

Left the table just after that $60 up for my hours play.Funny how thoughts of fatique and burnout seem to fade a little after winning a sweet pot.Fickle me? Never.

House will be busy tonight.Step A has friends coming round for a bingo night ( one of her Xmas pressies). Mrs A has bought in wee prizes for them to win.I promised to sell any prizes I win to the kids at a very reasonable price but sadly I’ve been banned from taking part.

Having a few blogspot problems so I'm going to hit the publish button now before it chews up anymore posts.( is there anything more annoying to a blogger?).

Will I play poker tonight? Mibbees Aye,Mibbees Naw. I'll see if I feel like playing later.

Added a few new links to the list on the right.I don't add 'em unless I read 'em and I only read the best so check 'em out.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Little Zombie Man

I may have to rename this blog due to how tired I feel today.So much for being refreshed after a holiday! Went to bed at 2am last night but didn't drop off until after 4am which meant I wasn't the chirpiest acorn in the world on my first day back at work.

Played for a couple of hours last night and but for calling an all in on a paired board with the nut flush ( doh) which cost me $40 I played ok and didn't lose or gain any more.

What I didn't do was enjoy playing very much.Joe Speaker writes in his post today about bringing his "A" game to the table and truth be told its been a while since I've done that.What started as a variance slap has changed into me simply playing poorly and throwing money away at times.Yesterdays JJ example was horrible to read back despite me joking about it.

Burnout may be part of the reason.I've played a lot of poker since I started and even since my hols in September and I mean a lot.It was strange reading Daniel Negreanu say in a recent article that he doesn't like to play for more than 4 hours at a time online.I've played 15 hours sessions online and 10 -12 hours is not uncommon.I mentioned taking more breaks and I've started to but 5 mins every few hours and playing everynight because as Joe says "Its what I do" and not because I'm feeling keen and sharp and want to play.

I'm not getting much pleasure from it so I'm looking for the kill asap but usually over value a hand and get in trouble before mounting a fightback and that cannot continue.

I mentioned being like a zombie today but I've been tired all week from late night ( ok early morning 6am) sessions.I don't think realistically even at my young age ( ahem) playing from 6pm Sat till 8am Sunday,getting a few hours sleep and then starting again is the best way to make money and improve my game or get the most out of life.

Mark is coming over tonight for a ps2 session ( and to get the piss ripped out of him for the score yesterday!) and I have no intentions of playing much poker later and will either play far less poker or none at all over the next few days.

When I went away in Sept I didn't play or think about poker ( well ok once or twice) for 16 nights and looking back my good run started not long after I came back.Not saying that will happen again but I need to feel fresher about my game and start enjoying it again more.

This is not a goodbye or an I'm quitting poker post but I do need to give myself the best chance of winning everytime I sit down and I may need a small break to get back to my best.

Not going to make the Dadi Tourney but good luck to all taking part especially the Poker mafia crew of Garyc,Tripjax and Jordan on Wed night in case I forget and please check their blogs for details.

Couple of funnies before I go from the paper:

A Diary reader in Washington gives us an international flavour by telling us that in political circles there are frequent references to Roe v Wade, the landmark high court ruling which legalised abortion in the United States. "President Bush, however," she tells us, "thinks it refers to the evacuation plans for New Orleans."

READER Jim Buchan realised what a divided world we now live in when he passed a newspaper billboard in Glasgow's Pollokshaws announcing the ill-health of Israel's prime minister, with the terse message: "Sharon Has Stroke." Then he heard two teenagers discussing the health of X Factor talent show judge Sharon Osbourne.

Another terrible putdown overheard in a Glasgow coffee shop of all places, as a chap tried to engage a girl in conversation. When he told her he had a brother, she crisply replied: "I take it he's older – or your mum would have stopped at one."

This video clip of football manager Harry Rednapp is good.Contains swearing so don't view from work!

Stop by Juices blog for another fine Nacho post.Mrs A is gonna love it.

Still it was probably aimed at Felicia who adores cute pet pics and stories in poker blogs....

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Super Sunday

Rangers bitter rivals celt*c fair brightened up my weekend by crashing out the Scottish Cup to minnows Clyde in a sensational result today.Clyde beat them 2-1 and had 2 goals ruled out.Always nice to see our separated brethren humiliated especially after Rangers beat Peterhead 5-0 easily yesterday with our new striker Boyd scoring three.Clyde's manager is also an ex Rangers player which just makes it even sweeter.

I wasn't looking forward to going back to work tomorrow but I'll have a wee spring in my step now!

To the pokery stuff now. Lady Falcon wrote in my comments :"Nominations for the 2006 blog awards are due on Thursday, Jan. 12. I vote that we all nominate Pauly's blog The Tao of Poker.The nomination form can be found at's make Pauly a serious contender!!Thanks for reading,Lady F."

Being a regular reader of The Tao of Poker I'm happy to oblige despite having to spend a morning recently cleaning my monitor after firing weetabix out my nose laughing at Daddys recent guest post. Read like a script from that classic movie Lady F herself has just reviewed...Foul Wind.

Figures wise I've played an awful lot of poker over the last week but lost $90 overall mainly due to my own poor plays and lack of concentration.For example I started last night in fish mode at Pokerrooms $1nl full ring when I bet with JJ on my first hand.One caller and on a flop that was an A 5 6 rainbow I managed to lose a $100 buyin to AQ.Even non poker players walking their dogs past the house at the time were peeking through the curtain and asking what the fuck I put the villan on if not an Ace.

I played a further 4 1/2 hours at Pokerroom and pulled back the deficit to $13 but what a lot of work to make up for a stupid play.Not sure if its a poker ego problem.Poker requires a different mental toughness to other competitive games.You can't simply will yourself to win a hand or always win it because you are better than the villan like say in pool or darts.Its about small edges not trying to outplay every opponent on every hand.

That was after Ladbrokes $100k freeroll lasted 30 mins for me.It was 15 minute blind levels and plenty of room to play but I called a few bets with pairs hoping to hit a set and build an early chip stack and then lost with AQ to AK when we both limped in and the flop had an Ace and 2 diamonds.Villan bet and I raised to stop him drawing to his flush...

Sunday update: Interpoker $1484,Ladbrokes $575 ,Pokerroom $663.

Back to the real grind tomorrow.I've been up till at least 5am most nights and sleeping in till 2pm so I'll probably feel jet-lagged tomorrow!

It was a great holiday though.Lots of time with the family and lots of poker played.

Not much on this week.Meeting a friend to play pool on Wednesday.We used to play every week till he moved an hour away.

Nearly forgot to mention I loved reading the story about the American woman who cut off two of her own toes to fit into her shoes better.Makes sense.Speaking of Americans Mrs A has been watching celebrity big brother with idiots like George Galloway and other barely famous people but they've managed to get cross dressing NBA star Dennis Rodman to appear.I've heard of him but never seen him play but have to ask what a sporting superstar is doing on one of the UK's most pathetic reality shows ever? Like the toe lady fact is sometimes stranger than fiction eh.

Bad news and good news on Juices free Nacho campaign.The good news is that after chewing yet another pair of shoes Mrs A has agreed to his release!! The bad news is she insists the wee man is to be released onto the nearest busy road...

Friday, January 06, 2006

Dadi Special Omalympics Tourney

First please follow the link to Jordans blog to read more about the latest blogger/reader tourney at 'Stars. I've never played Omaha and with the holidays being over next week I won't get away with staying up till 2am to play before work so I won't make it but I wish I could as the last one was great fun and I found some really brilliant new blogs through it. ( Lady Falcon for one)

Reading Jordans blog about feeling sick of poker and I was feeling exactly the same last night.Didn't start playing till after 11pm and even then I was wondering why as I was kind of expecting to get whupped again by lady luck and my own weak plays.Lost $38 at Laddys.Half from yet another suckout and half from trying to push too hard and simply being a mile off my game.

Moved to Pokerroom and fired up a fixed limit table.In part I just felt totally bored and sick of NL and I'd read Drizz's post about relearning limit holdem and was temporarily inspired to try it for a change.Lasted 15 mins but won $6 when my AK hit and held up and I actually enjoyed the change of scenery.Well for 15 mins anyway!

Played a Laddys $2.50 turbo Mtt and finished 26th for a whopping $4.91 pay out! Veneno 's latest post includes fine mtt cashes by The Chief.I wonder if my $2.41 net win will get a mention .lol

I also read the Grinders post where he mentioned not playing unless there was a bonus being earned.I've always been a bit lazy when it comes to chasing bonuses but now I've made Laddys $100k freeroll it seems daft not to play at Interpoker where I've now done 88% of my $200 sign up bonus.( 10 zillion raked hands)

Logged on to a £.25-.50 nl 6 max table and left with a decent profit when the table seemed to stagnate.

I was very tired and very wasted by this point so moved down to a £.15-.30nl 6 max table and ended up having a blast with a couple of villans in the chat box.I usually ignore the chat but it was a laugh.Got involved in a crazy hand with them and for the first time at a table I mentioned the blog and that I'd post it here so hello Polar and Stig if you do drop by.

Got my first troll comment today but fairly sure that was from a sad bitter celt*c fan in Scotland. No tims in Europe eh.Ha.

Ok here's the hand that had the table wondering of we'd won Inter's bad beat jackpot.My quad two's beaten by quad Queens.Sadly Stig looked up the rules and it has to be Quad Jacks or better that get beaten to qualify.Strangely I was almost certain Stig had the Q but knew I may get something out the side pot.Would have been one hell of a laydown if Stig had a bigger stack and had pushed.Would I have laid it down? Would I fuck....!

Left the first hand in because I think it was the one Polarsun asked me what I had and I couldn't remember.Pretty sure this was the one he said he had AK.Pity it hadn't been AA!

------HAND 20------
Game #1299794284: Hold'em NL (£0.15/£0.25) - 2006/01/05 - 23:24:07 (ET)
Table "Mirzam" Seat 6 is the button.
Seat 1: Zagga (£30.65 in chips)
Seat 2: The_Stig (£3.50 in chips)
Seat 3: And311054 (£15.90 in chips)
Seat 4: GINGERICH (£12.60 in chips)
Seat 6: POLARSUN (£60.13 in chips)
Zagga: posts small blind £0.15
The_Stig: posts big blind £0.25
----- HOLE CARDS -----
dealt to Zagga [9d Ah]
And311054: folds
GINGERICH: calls £0.25
_cadoi_ joins the table at seat #5
POLARSUN: raises to £1
Zagga: calls £0.85
The_Stig: folds
----- FLOP ----- [6d 3h 9c]
Zagga: checks
POLARSUN: bets £3.50
Zagga: calls £3.50
----- TURN ----- [6d 3h 9c][8h]
Zagga: checks
POLARSUN: bets £4.50
Zagga: calls £4.50
----- RIVER ----- [6d 3h 9c 8h][9s]
Zagga: bets £8
Returned uncalled bets £8 to Zagga
Zagga: doesn't show hand
Zagga collects £17.60 from Main pot
----- SUMMARY -----
Total pot £18.50 Main pot £17.60 Rake £0.90
Board [6d 3h 9c 8h 9s]
Seat 1: Zagga (small blind) collected £17.60
Seat 2: The_Stig (big blind) folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 3: And311054 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 4: GINGERICH folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 6: POLARSUN (button) folded on the River

------HAND 21------
Game #1299794294: Hold'em NL (£0.15/£0.25) - 2006/01/05 - 23:25:54 (ET)
Table "Mirzam" Seat 1 is the button.
Seat 1: Zagga (£39.25 in chips)
Seat 2: The_Stig (£3.25 in chips)
Seat 3: And311054 (£15.90 in chips)
Seat 4: GINGERICH (£12.35 in chips)
Seat 5: _cadoi_ (£5 in chips)
Seat 6: POLARSUN (£51.13 in chips)
The_Stig: posts small blind £0.15
And311054: posts big blind £0.25
_cadoi_: posts big blind £0.25
----- HOLE CARDS -----
dealt to Zagga [2h 2c]
_cadoi_: checks
POLARSUN: calls £0.25
Zagga: calls £0.25
The_Stig: calls £0.10
And311054: checks
----- FLOP ----- [2s Qd Qh]
The_Stig: checks
And311054: checks
_cadoi_: checks
POLARSUN: checks
Zagga: checks
----- TURN ----- [2s Qd Qh][2d]
The_Stig: checks
And311054: checks
_cadoi_: checks
POLARSUN: checks
Zagga: checks
----- RIVER ----- [2s Qd Qh 2d][Qc]
The_Stig: bets £3 and is all-in
And311054: folds
_cadoi_: folds
POLARSUN: calls £3
Zagga: raises to £12
POLARSUN: calls £9
----- SHOW DOWN -----
Zagga: shows [2h 2c] (Four of a kind, Twos, Queen high)
The_Stig: shows [7h Qs] (Four of a kind, Queens, Seven high)
POLARSUN: mucks hand [Js 4s]
Zagga collects £17.10 from Side pot #1
The_Stig collects £9.75 from Main pot
----- SUMMARY -----
Total pot £28.25 Main pot £9.75 Side pot #1 £17.10 Rake £1.40
Board [2s Qd Qh 2d Qc]
Seat 1: Zagga (button) showed [2h 2c] and won (£17.10) with Four of a kind, Twos, Queen high
Seat 2: The_Stig (small blind) showed [7h Qs] and won (£9.75) with Four of a kind, Queens, Seven high
Seat 3: And311054 (big blind) folded on the River
Seat 4: GINGERICH folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 5: _cadoi_ (big blind) folded on the River
Seat 6: POLARSUN mucked [Js 4s]

You know I read back the last bit joking about how I would have called and it got me thinking.I'm not being clever but Stig had £3 left and had played a tight game with a short stack so my read putting him on a Q was right. If he'd gone all in for £50 would I have called? I think so despite my read and that's been part of my recent problem.Not trusting my own reads and acting on them.Almost as if sometimes you expect the negative and when your read tells you the outcome will be bad its almost as if I have to call to confirm which in turn makes me feel even worse and more likely to repeat.Don't know if that makes sense but its dangerous as it must be the kind of feeling complusive losing gamblers get when they know a move will cost them but go ahead anyway as they almost get a perverse pleasure from it.

Here's a quote from a Cardplayer interview with Daniel Negreanu I liked.

RB: What is it about the big-game players that puts them on such a higher level than the rest of the poker world?

DN: At that level, everybody understands the fundamentals. It comes down to psychological warfare, discipline, and emotional stability. It’s why Phil Hellmuth could never win; he’s not emotionally stable enough to fade the huge losses. You have to be able to lose $200,000 and say to yourself, “Well, it happens. I’ll be all right.” Phil Ivey said it best: “When you start thinking that what you just lost is a house or a car, you’re dead.”

Ok I was writing about losing a car payment yesterday and not the price of an actual car ( !!) but on a smaller scale I need to change my thinking a bit.I've only really got into the 6 max since August and I'm probably still getting used to the natural swings that occur.Being able to blog about them and read others successes and failures has certainly helped me.

Got to keep the focus on decisions and not results.Get the first right and long term the results will follow.

I don't imagine she'll ever see this as my blog breaks at least the first 4 rules but I still enjoy reading Felicia's blog . Here's the first 6.
1) No bad beat stories ( see last 2 weeks)
2) No hand histories ( see above)
3) Don't whine about losses. ( see reply to num 1)
4) Don't post pics of kids or pets.( Quite right.Nacho should have his own blog and it would probably get more hits than mine)
5) give your opinion.( never afraid to do that)
6) Are you a poker journal or not? ( poker n life.Thats my excuse for the dog pics)

Felicia wrote she generated a lot of anger and hysteria with the above.Why? Each to his or her own.She's a fine writer and if thats what she thinks works I can respect that,make up my own mind and take or leave her advice.No harm done.

Back to the poker and worked my buyin from £25 to £75 before hitting the sack about 5am $105 up in total for my nights work and feeling a bit happier with my game.

Lets see if that continues....

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Short n Sweet

Just a short update post today.Finished up $50 at Ladbrokes but Interpoker kicked me in the junk for a $300 hit so not feeling so good about poker today!

I suppose the upside of my recent poker nightmare is that I can now clearly see why bankroll management is so damn important.Variance.Pure and simple.

I was keen to write up the 4 crucial hands which cost me last night to show it was variance not bad play but who wants to read bad beat tales? I can't resist mentioning the flopped nut flush which I got the villan all in with on the flop after I bet and she raised.She had 55 on a board of K 8 3 and hit runner threes to win a buyin from me.

I'm going to have to look again at controlling my emotions better during play.I was furious that the villan had got it all in with a mere 55 and had won the pot.Sensible thoughts about how plays like hers are to be welcomed blah blah blah just wouldn't wash and combined with other villans hitting 2 and 3 outers on me I had that awful feeling like I was never going to win another pot again.

I mentioned I've also clenched my fist a few times when winning recent pots and thats new for me too.When I wasn't the variance beeetches new plaything I could win or lose pots and remain neutral about it which is the best state of mind to be in to win at poker.

Loss of emotional control is more obvious at the very lowest limits where there's far more ego on the line in each hand.I can see how the loose aggressives make money by pushing people around and finally they snap and play back with an inferior hand.I caught several good hands in a row and had one player go all in preflop with j7 sooted which I insta-called with QQ and won.They pushed because they took it personally when I had reraised them out the last few pots.

I'm not looking for tea,sympathy or advice on "playing every hand correctly". I've read enough poker books and even at just over a year online feel I have enough experience to say that while I may not be at my poker best I've been colder decked in the last 2 weeks than at anytime since I began playing.

I do wonder if my $1500 cashout on Nov 20th has affected my play in any way.I certainly don't believe any cashout curse nonsense or that its rigged in any way but I wonder if cashing out so much had me subconsciously chasing to try and make up for what had gone from my roll.

Part of the beauty about having a large roll for the limit you play is that bad beats are much more easy to brush off.Maybe I still need to try harder to see my bankroll as chips and not "fuck me I just lost enough to make my car payment"while forgetting I could cash in my roll and pay the loan of if I wanted.( only 16 months to go!) It's really only at .25-.50nl where I can lose a buyin ( $50 or $100 depending on site) and not really feel it.I mentioned that before and got some fine advice from Will I'll maybe revisit.

Bad luck,bad play with a dash of burnout and exhaustion thrown in does not make for a happy poker cake mix.

Ok it wasn't short and probably more bitter than sweet so thanks for reading.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Shennanigans declared

I'd like to declare shennanigans! Played a few games of poker last night but finished early at 8.30 to get some sleep.It was 08.30am and had been another mad night at the tables ending up with me playing at Laddies $2-$4 nl 6 max game with a $229 average pot size.

Found the going tough at Laddys last night.I was at the same table as the maniac from the night before only he was slightly calmer at $2-$4 nl than $1-$2.That was until he got shortstacked and pushed with AQ.I called with 1010 but he hit both cards to win a $260 pot.

Its weird that I only move up when down for the night but I don't tilt.Probably due to the scary pot sizes.One mistake or bit of bad luck and its bye bye stack.

Left Laddys around 7.30am down $290 and feeling quite card dead.Best hand in hours and hours of 6 max play was JJ and a $24 preflop raise took the pot.

Card dead I may have been but I was also struggling to keep my emotions in check after missing out on a huge pot.Poker is about making the correct decisions and when I called a $12 raise with 88 I was ok with it .It was raised and I called again meaning I had $24 invested in the pot.Suddenly everyone is all in and the actions on me.I tell myself that I may be down but I'm not tilting and there will be better spots to get my money in the middle.( another $176 to call)

When the flop brought an 8 and I saw I would have won a $800 pot I tried to think all the right things but since Juice told me Laddys card shuffle is determined when hole cards are dealt it was hard to put it out my head.Thanks Juice!

Didn't help when I folded 53 off to another big raise and would have flopped a straight and another huge pot.

Part of this is positive affirmation where I only notice the times I would have hit and don't focus on the zillion misses with 53 or 88 and I have to keep in mind I probably played the hands correctly.

Joined an Interpoker £.25-.50 nl 6 max table with a £50 buyin and over the course of an hour wiped the floor with most of the villans at my table and finally headed for bed £120 up.I was tempted to stay up even long as I was the big stack with £170 and seemed to be hitting hands and flops for the first time in hours but I was so tired if it had been a boxing match it would have been stopped.

£120 is not quite $240 thanks to the strong Dollar but its not far off meaning I now have $1627 at Inter,$586 at Ladbrokes and $673 at Pokerroom.

Also played a $10,30 player sng at Pokerroom and bubbled in 5th when the villan hit his set on the turn.He was ahead preflop with 66 v my A7.I hit my Ace and he hit his 6 so while it was frustrating I can have no complaints.

I've also already qualified for Laddys $100k weekly raked hands freeroll having played over 600 ( 500 reqd) raked hands in a couple of days.They've stopped the $2k nightly raked hands tourney but I think I prefer the idea of one big event at the end of the week.

Ok I gotta hungry dog to feed...

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Broken promises

Enjoyed watching Phil Taylor destroy Manley 7-0 in the World Darts final to give him a 13th World title.Stephen Hendry was a snooker sensation but never managed 13 world championships. ( 7 and counting) I doubt any individual has dominated any sport to the extent he has.

After my tourney fun last night I sensibly went to bed and woke up refreshed at 6am for my early morning run.

Errr ok so I moved to the cash tables and played till 5am!

The swings were crazy as usual at the 6 max tables.Stuck to .25-50 nl as per my previous posts but despite my patience I ran into some nasty rivers and found myself stuck $150 after being up $50.

Broke my promise to self I wrote yesterday and moved up but I didn't have to go far to find an even more bonkers table than the one I was at.I moved from a $24 average pot at .25-.50nl to a table at $1-$2 nl with an average pot of $148 and one player with over $1k at the table and a very loose aggressive style.

It never fails to amaze me how many of these types of players emerge in the early hours.I'm sure alcohol is a factor.Must feel great for the ego to continually raise other players out of their comfort zone although I slowed him down by pushing all in over the top of one of his $22 preflop raises with AK.

I did lose $133 to him and after reloading I did wonder if it just wasn't destined to be my night.I lost one big hand with trips to a rivered straight but then won the pot below in an almost identical situation.I've posted the hand below and yes under normal circumstances of course you should raise preflop with QQ but I had a very tight image and would probably only have taken the blinds with my first raise at the table besides this was about not giving away any information to the villan in order to maximise later in the hand.K10 scared the hell out of me as I'd called a similar bet at another table after a rivered 10 and my trips had lost to the only hand that could have beaten me when the villan made his straight with AJ but while a bit of fear in cash games can help keep me tight seeing monsters under the bed on every street and being scared cannot be the way to play either.

** Game ID 394417900 starting - 2006-01-03 04:57:46
** White Hall [Hold 'em] (1.002.00 No Limit - Cash Game) Real Money

- pariskill sitting in seat 1 with $134.10
- Acornman sitting in seat 3 with $187.65
- Badger1 sitting in seat 4 with $127.15
- geordieneil sitting in seat 5 with $49.76 [Dealer]
- boby69 sitting in seat 6 with $1460.00

boby69 posted the small blind - $1.00
pariskill posted the big blind - $2.00

** Dealing card to Acornman: Queen of Diamonds, Queen of Clubs
Acornman called - $2.00
Badger1 folded
geordieneil called - $2.00
boby69 called - $2.00
pariskill checked

** Dealing the flop: Jack of Diamonds, Queen of Hearts, 9 of Hearts
boby69 checked
pariskill checked
Acornman bet - $4.00
geordieneil called - $4.00
boby69 raised - $8.00
pariskill folded
Acornman called - $8.00
geordieneil called - $8.00

** Dealing the turn: 3 of Diamonds
boby69 checked
Acornman bet - $20.00
geordieneil folded
boby69 raised - $40.00
Acornman called - $40.00

** Dealing the river: 4 of Clubs
boby69 went all-in - $1411.00
Acornman went all-in - $137.65
boby69 shows: Jack of Clubs, 9 of Diamonds
Acornman shows: Queen of Diamonds, Queen of Clubs
Acornman wins $385.30 from the main pot

Looks great but in reality I switched off for bed happy being $80 up at the cash tables and with the $70 from my tourney win added to my roll.

I felt I should have won more for my efforts but after the last month I'm just grateful to have finished ahead.

No moving up beyond .25-.50 and no setting goals I wrote yesterday.Broke the first part and will now break the second by aiming to have $1k in my Ladbrokes account by the end of the month.It's up to $870 and another $130 within 27 days should be achievable if the poker gods are willing.

Nacho is currently outside after having chewed Grandson Josh's toothbrush and also its replacement.Mrs is not happy with him and had threatened to withdraw all bones and chewy toys until he learns to behave.This week Nacho will be mostly out the back door...

The above was for Juice.Happy to cater to any reader requests.If anyone wants more Nacho posts or an update on my bonnet catch situation you only have to ask and like the river the Acorn will deliver.

After reading back the bit about not raising with QQ at a maniac table I wondered if it may be worth a small write up on strategy for playing at maniacal loose tables with very high pot averages.Sit tight and go nuts with the nuts probably covers it but there's not doubt you can throw away your poker books v these guys.It's a whole new card game! Not sure if I cover most of my tactics in other posts anyway and I'd just be going over old ground.

I did discover that Juice wasn't winding me up and that Laddies do offer $15 if you fill out your player profile and $25 if you include a photo.Now while I'm happy to go into all my poker stuff and lay my strategies and results out here as openly and honestly as possible I'm not sure I want to give any info to the villans.I certainly don't link to this blog on my Pokerroom profile page.I don't even include my birthdate or when I joined as I feel the less the villans know about me the better but $25 for nothing is tempting and who says it has to be accurate?!

Righty Arsenal v Man Utd has started on Sky Sports so I'm off to watch it before possibly hitting up a table or two later.

Watch out for hidden sets...

Made the money but arghhhh!

Prepared like a pro for the £10k Mtt tonight by having a ham n mushroom pizza n many smokes.

399 of us were to do battle but only 40 would make the money.I must have played about 10 hands in total and once I'd made it past the bubble I loosened up and ran into a tough beat.I'd folded AK to a 2.4k raise from a new player at the table when I had 8.5k in chips just to try and make the money but when I saw AQ after the bubble I raised it up and got 1 caller.I go all in on an A 7 5 board,he calls and shows 99.Blank turn.Do I need to say what the river card was? Damn 9 innit!

Still £35 ( 36th position) for an initial £2.50 investment is ok with me and more good mtt experience to store away.I was at an aggressive table most of the time and truth be told felt I simply played my cards most of the time.I did reraise with second pair to steal a pot fairly early on but the rest was just patient sit tight n wait for a monster poker.The blinds went up every 15 mins so plenty of room for movement.

You know if I'd won that hand I'd have been in with a shout.

And if my Auntie had balls she'd be my Uncle...

Monday, January 02, 2006

Happy New Year

Mrs A and I had a fine Hogmany and anniversary on the 31st.Had some friends round and smoked and drank our way into the wee sma' oors. Watched "Only an Excuse" and "Chewin' the fat" which were both excellent are now regular Hogmany tv specials now Ricki Fulton is no longer with us to do his Rev I.M Jolly and Supercop stuff in "Scotch n Wry".

Me and my mate even squeezed in a little heads-up poker action.I gave him my "Bluenoze" account at Pokerroom with a million play chips as I never use it anymore and he was worried about telling me he'd blown 700k of it in one night.Now I may be a tightass but even I don't care how many play chips get tilted away!

They stayed over and left about 2pm just as I was getting up.

I had a nice chilled afternoon with Mrs A and hit up the poker when she went up for a lie down.

I mentioned I've been really enjoying playing Mtt's ( Multi table tourneys) and I played a few more yesterday and had some minor success.

I came 12th from 429 in a Ladbrokes $5 turbo sng.I was chipleader again by 15000 chips at one point but the blinds were so high (15k big blind) it was a bit of a crapshoot although I still don't think I adjusted well enough to the changing conditions near the end.I sat back too much for a turbo game then pushed at the wrong times.$19 for my efforts but would have been nice to have made the final table.

Played my first ever paid entry Satellite tourney which was at Interpoker to qualify for the £10k tonight at 9.30 gmt.Made the top 7 ( from 74) and qualified and while its hardly a wsop ticket it felt good to get a £25 ticket for £2.50. 57 registered to play with 4 hours till it starts.I'm not sure how big the field will be but hopefully not too large.

I'm going to play more satellites and mtt's in the future as they are a welcome diversion from the cash game grind and give my poker brain new challenges and angles which can only help improve me as a player.

I've never been a goals and ambitions type of person.I would love to state my goal would be to double last years profits and move up a few levels but I've found I've played better poker over the last few days after having got the "oh no I've lost a ton and need to catch up" monkey off my back and as this is a hobby and not work I'm not going to put too much pressure on myself.

I had a good night two tabling .25-.50 6 max nl last night at Laddies after my tourney fun.Possibly I should be pushing myself harder and if I was 18 I probably would but I've made decent money from the very low stakes nl over the last 14 months and I'll probably try and continue where I am for just now.I only really began to focus on 6 max from August and despite a recent downswing Aug-Jan has been very kind to me in poker terms.

It may be down to where I keep my money on line.The latest figures are Interpoker $1339 , Pokerroom $684 and Ladbrokes $792.

Total of $2815 but I tend to play at the right level for my roll at each site which should minimize my chances of going broke but doesn't give much scope to take a shot and I believe we should all take a shot every now and then.

It's possibly just a mind trick I play on myself.If I had all my money on one site I'd probably feel happier about playing $100 -$200 buy-in nl but I prefer having it spread around a bit and trying to build each roll on each site before moving up.

Also the truth is that I know I'm at my most comfortable at .25-.50 6 max nl. I'm not the rock I am at the higher levels.I'll call a raise from the button with almost any two sometimes because I'm confident I can out play the villan post flop.Bet sizes are a dead give away. Raises to $1 preflop and then a min bet on a low flop is AK or AQ most of the time.Just having the courage to bet the pot or 3/4 pot would represent a high pair and probably take the pot.

It's not a goal or ambition but the plan for the immediate future is to stick to what I'm good at and continue playing more Mtt's.If I make as much as last year I'll be delighted and if I can improve on it then all the better but I'm not going to put too much pressure on myself.Mrs A has a part-time job earning £30 per evening for two nights work each week.The moment I mentioned she could give it up if my poker profits continued can be pin pointed as the moment my downswing began.

That's why I think players that play online for a living do not have the easiest job in the world.Sure there's no boss and no early Monday morning alarm call but the pressure of knowing you had to win to afford food and the bills when your being slapped about by the variace beeetch kind of takes the fun out of it I would think and I'm not sure even if I had the skills I could deliver under that kind of pressure or get much pleasure out of it even if I did.

Having written that some of my best nights have started badly and there's not much more satisfying than knowing you've had to dig deep and rely on mental toughness and good reads to pull a night round.

I've been watching the World Darts Championship on tv.Its amazing how a player can be down and out then dig deep to turn his game round when it all seems to be going wrong.Unpredictability is what make all sport so exciting.Any dog can have it's day.Phil Taylor ( 12 times World dart Champion and greatest of all time) was 3-0 up in sets but Mardle got momentum from nowhere and won 4 in a row to lead 4-3.It was first to 6 sets and just as Taylor looked dead and gone he showed the grit, determination and skill to pull it round and win it.

Chelsea's ( my fav English team) fans sing "That's why we're Champions" and indeed they too have a kind of X factor ( not that trashy pish tv show) that sets them apart.

Looking forward to Phil "The Power" Taylor V Peter "One dart" Manley tonight.

Rangers ended the year beating Dundee Utd 3-0 at Ibrox but our season is all about the Champions league now.17 points behind them is probably too much but hey we've won more titles than any other team in the world.Missing out for one season while we make history in European competition is not the end of the world.

Not back to work until the 9th which is magic news.We usually go away when I'm off so it'll be unusual to be at home for the week.I looked at trying to take Mrs A away for a short cruise to Norway ( from Newcastle) last year as a surprise but I couldn't get the weekend so that or another trip to good old Amsterdam could be on the cards.

Last time I went to Norway was with Wendy about 10 years ago.My sister met her a few weeks back and Wendy told her she doesn't speak to her sister or Mum which is quite sad.She apparently is also quite down at times and said hello.I said to Vicky ( Mic n Vics) when she was back that I may try and get in touch with Wendy this year but I'm not sure how it would go or if it's a good idea.I mentioned before we were best friends and on/off boyfriend/girlfriend so maybe its better to just let things lie.

Ok what a rambling start to a new year! Mrs A is working so off to walk Nacho then come back and chill out watching the darts till £10k tourney time.

I may have to dig my dart board out the cupboard.I can feel a 9 dart finish coming on.....

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