Wednesday, November 30, 2011

November Stats

Pokerstars $3987 ( + $704) Party $604 ( =)
+$704 for November.Total roll $4591

Played 682 sngs in November and as usual that was without playing any poker at all between Mon-Thus each week.I also managed to play 104 sngs in one session last Sat night which is probably a record for me.( all hypers though)

Of the 682 sngs 659 were hypers and after breaking even at them and winning the only $15 ,180 player turbo I played, next month I'm only going to play one $15 game and save myself a lot of time and pointless grinding.If only poker worked like that!

I don't mean to keep referring back to Jared Tendlers book, however I liked the example about a top sportsman getting paid millions to perform but not being paid at all to work out in the gym.Without the gym workout he's not going to be a top sportsman and without playing through the run bad/break even stretch I'm never going to take down the games I do win and make a profit.

Not much else going on.I saw an article linked by Everton Yorkie on the RTR forum which says that Facebook could launch real money poker in the UK from as early as the first quarter of next year.Even if only a tiny % of the huge number of Facebook play money players decided to give real money a go there could be very juicy times ahead! I don't twitter and I don't Facebook but I can see me signing up for the latter in double quick time if this goes ahead.And yeah I would give up on all my principles about privacy,online anonymity etc for a higher hourly profit rate.Show me the money!

I'm not sure how easy it would be to persuade play money players to play for real money.When I started with play money on Pokerroom back in June '05 I chose Pokerroom because it was only possible to reload for 2000 play chips per day.When Pokerroom withdrew their play money tables at Halloween that year I tried Stars for my poker fix and hated the fact that players were allowed to reload play chips with no limit.Where's the skill in that I thought.( without the slightest trace of irony)

It was that and the big Halloween first deposit bonus on offer at Pokerroom that first persuaded me to make the switch to real cash poker.And hey I'm glad I did or I'd never have become the anti-social,button mashing,carpal tunnel ridden couch potato I am today.Thank the poker gods I've at least made ( yeah prob less than the min wage per hour but still a profit!)some money playing poker and I do actually quite enjoy the game or I'd really be up the creek without a paddle.

As a real money player it's easy to mock those who only use play money.I remember being quite proud of my million play chip bankroll and thinking I must be quite good to have built such a roll.If you know anyone playing Facebook poker who thinks the same as I did then be nice to them,gently encourage them to open a real money Stars account and tell them low stakes sngs's are a great way to start out....

Back soon..

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Saturday, November 26, 2011

No Danger:Man at Work

I had trouble getting to sleep over the last week due to the situation at work re my internet use.It wasn't being worried that kept me awake, but my anger at the lying bassa trying to get me the sack.I eventually spoke to my manager again near the end of the week and made it clear that I would go down the bullying and grievance route if this wasn't sorted out once and for all.

My manager spoke to her boss about my request for the company IT security guys to verify my side of the story and apparently they came back and said they wouldn't look at my internet usage because I'm not seen as a danger to the company.They won't be saying that when....I turn up with homemade sandwiches instead of using the works canteen.

Sad that these days I don't even feel I can write a jokey/spoof story on an anonymous internet blog about how dangerous I could be without worrying about being carted off in an orange jumpsuit! Paranoid? Hmmm, remember this story about the guy who wrote a joking tweet about what he'd like to do to Nottingham Airport after being grounded by the snow last year?

Anyway I've been told I've nothing to worry about re my job and that it will be dealt with next week.

Played 56 $7 hypers last night and after a good start I ran horribly and lost just under $100.( obviously missing the run good Dudley brought with him last weekend).I'm still enjoying reading Jared Tendlers book on the mental side of poker and I've learned a couple more things from it this week.

For years I've messed about for ages before I actually start a poker session and even when I was off work for nearly six months I hardly put in any volume at all.In part I can put that down to poker only being a hobby,being lazy and the fact that although the extra money the game brings in is very useful,it's nowhere near enough to make a huge difference to my finances.

I now realise my lack of motivation to play is mainly down to the accumulated negative emotions that have built up during all the downswings I've been through over the years.Not playing = avoiding more negative emotions.

I've also always thought I tend not to tilt or berate my opponents after bad beats because I'm quite laidback and don't have much of a poker ego.I'm very aware that beating low stakes cash games /sit n go games means very little when it comes to actually being good in the grand scheme of things.My overall OPR ratings aren't too bad for a hobby player ( see below) and the book has made me realise that my long held "no poker ego for me" view about myself isn't accurate at all.

I now realise it's actually my feelings of being superior to most of the donks I play with which stops me getting mad at the felt.If a toddler goes near an open fire you may shout at them or even give them a wee smack on the hand to let them know it's wrong and dangerous, but you're not going to lose the plot and start ranting and raving at them! That and the fact I don't have any great sense of entitlement as I've played enough hands to know better probably helps too.In poker too, we spend long enough trying to lead the toddling fish into the fire that it makes sense not to get mad when they do throw a few hot coals in our direction as they're on their way to burning through yet another deposit.

I also like my opponents to know that they may get riled and tilty after a major suckout goes against them, but ole Mr Superior here can just brush it off and not let it bother me at all.Wether it's with moves on the table or the mind games side of things,anything that can make opponents feel even remotely uncomfortable or intimidated has to be good.

Perhaps having a bit of an ego is a good thing.When Dudley was round last weekend I was trying to persaude him to play some $7 hypers and he was sure the other players at the table would think ( he only usually plays Omaha)he was a fish.That seemed a crazy thought to me as old Dudley has been playing and beating the game for years ( and all without a raise button!) and in my estimation would automatically be far better than all but the best regs at any $7 hyper table he sat down at.

Official Poker Rankings:zagga plays online poker at PokerStars.

120 days Rating: 97.34% Rank: 25,520 of 960,919

Year 2011 Rating: 98.27% Rank: 30,672 of 1,770,676

Year 2010 Rating: 95.17% Rank: 92,788 of 1,922,695

Year 2009 Rating: 65.82% Rank: 590,315 of 1,727,304

Year 2008 Rating: 98.28% Rank: 18,231 of 1,062,266

Year 2007 Rating: 39.73% Rank: 371,087 of 615,667

Anyway as usual I've rambled on way too much! Hope some of it makes sense.

Todays youtube clip is for all dog lovers/owners.You can just leave right now Josie!Nacho is still getting counselling after reading the comments you recently posted about dogs.

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Sunday, November 20, 2011

Dudleys Philosophical Musings

Maybe you had to be there, but Dudley was over last night for a fine beers/smoke/poker/ session and while he was here he asked a question I'd never even considered before and which made me look again at life and my approach to it.As he supped his beer and stroked his beard * Dudley asked not why we are all here,what life is all about or how to find true happiness.No,Dudley ( and he got quite heated about it) demanded know "Just what exactly do spotty dogs do anyway?".Answers on a postcard...

He must have brought some run good with him as I played around 60 hyper turbos and came out ahead and I even managed to get old Duds to load a few up and he finished in profit for the evening too.He also played a few NL08 games and although I tried to follow the action I still can't quite get my head round this having the best low card hand shennanigans.Watching one player finish a hand with a straight flush and only splitting the pot just didn't seem right!

We were having such a good time relieving the fish of their money it was almost 4am by the time we got a taxi organised for Dudley.I called it for him and booked it under the name Dudley, a name given to him by Rosie a few years ago.I'm not even sure I rememeber what his real name is!

Dudley Do-Right is his full moniker and I think it was chosen because he used to leave anon comments on my blog and sign off as Dd and not because he's handsome,brave and daring like the Canadian cartoon Mountie with the same name.
He certainly looked pleased that he was going to have to confirm that name to the driver before he got in the taxi.

Ok,thanks for reading.Back soon...

* fictional beard added for intellectual gravitas.

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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Nice Wee Bink

Hit the felt last night and after warming up with some $7 Hypers I loaded up some $15,18 player turbos and a $15,180 player turbo too.I won about $30 at the Hypers and 18 player games and managed to take the 180 game down for a nice wee score.

The funny thing was that as I was playing the final table I was thinking how fishy the table was and at one point when three handed I was able to pretty much run over the other two.I sharkscoped the last eight players at the final table afterwards and found they were all winners who had won about $220k between them.( and a couple had leaderboard stars too)Obviously playing better players meant they respected my raises more.**

When we got heads up and the villain shoved preflop,I called with 77 and lost a race against AJ that would have given me the win.After thinking "Here we go again",I kept plugging away and won the next two key flips to give me the win.

Of course if I keep playing $15,180 player games my profit from last night can vanish on one completely standard downswing, but for now I'm just happy to have taken one down.

** If you nodded in agreement at that bit,you're a fish!

Ok,just heading out to the football to watch Rangers take on St Johnstone at Ibrox.

Just time to post this youtube clip which made me smile last week.

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Thursday, November 17, 2011

I'll be your dog...

I slept in this morning after not setting my alarm properly and rushed through my brekky and morning cup of tea before walking Nacho and heading off for work.I'm in the top flat of a block of four and as I reached the bottom of the stairs I noticed Nacho had sneaked down too and had bolted off down the nearby path.He's always in the hall as I leave hoping his Daddy isn't going to leave him until Two Pies arrives to take him out around lunchtime, but he's never run off like that before.

I was cursing that he chose this morning of all mornings when I'm running late to make his escape.I ran down the path shouting his name and then back up the path when I caught sight of him running off again in another direction.I was half way up the path,still shouting on him,when suddenly he appeared and a startled women also walking up the path looked at me as if I'd lost the plot.As he ran towards the woman instead of in my direction it became clear why.It wasn't Nacho! My boy had been in my flat the whole time minding his own business!

My day at work didn't improve my mood as my manager pulled me aside proposing to give me a verbal warning for spending too much time online looking at a Rangers fans message board.Regular readers may remember a similar "informal" scenario back in April
and as was the case then the accusation is completely false and has been fabricated by the same dickhead as before.

He sits near a fellow Rangers fan I was over chatting to on Monday about Uefa charging Celtic over "illicit" pro IRA terrorism chants from their supporters.Personally I couldn't care less what they sing, but they started the fire a few years back by getting Rangers into trouble with Uefa over chants and we both agreed that karma is a bitch and what goes around,comes around.It just so happens that the lying dickheads son is part of a celtic fans group who are most prominent when it comes to declaring their love for the terrorist group.

Speaking to my manager,I didn't deny looking at newspaper sites and I do like to read and keep the Guardian ( no tree hugging for me though!) Comment is Free section open most days as I like to read through it when I get a spare minute.There's no way that constitutes excessive use and as I mentioned above I've not even looked at the Rangers fans messageboard at all.Maybe there is some irony in the Comment is Free section motto that "Comment is free but facts are sacred"!

My manager ( lovely woman standing in for the bus driver as he's on long term sick) is on my side and straight after the meeting I took her to my pc to look at the internet history ( it's IE6 and only covers this week and last week) which showed I was telling the truth.I got an email from her about our discussion and confirming my request that the IT security team look at my internet use in more depth to further disprove the lying dickheads accusation.This time though I've made it clear I'm not standing for this crap and want action taken against him.Watch this space...!

At least tomorrow is Friday and I'm looking forward to a chilled weekend and to catching up with Dudley who is coming over on Saturday after the football for a session of drinking,smoking and online poker.I may even learn how to play an NL turbo 08 game, whatever that is!

Ok,the post title gives me an excuse to post this classic ( yeah that means old) UK cinema advert again.

I've just got time to add my congratulations to Captain America,Carlos Bocanegra,on being capped 100 times by the USA.He signed for Rangers in the summer and has proved to be a great buy so far and more importantly his Missus is a hot babe too!Looking forward to plenty of "USA,USA" chants at Ibrox in his honour this Saturday at the game.

Back soon...

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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Plugging Leaks

I've only read a few chapters of Jared Tendler's book and it's helping my poker game already.I've got a bit lazy when it comes to improving my game and I tend to just jump on and play most weekends without reviewing previous sessions or giving much thought to any leaks I have.

I've written here before that I don't tilt much and that means I don't do the common stuff like stepping up levels to chase losses or just spewing off chips with silly calls and shoves.That's not to say I don't get frustrated.I played 75 six max hyper turbos last night and many of the repeated bad beats seemed almost surreal at times.I was actually quite pleased I only lost $69 after taking a real battering for most of the night.

Anyway this post is about leaks and the first one I have is related to how I stop myself from going on full on monkey spew mode when running badly.My technique in turbo/hyper turbo games is to tighten up and go back to my basic game for a few hands/table orbits until that sick bad beat feeling passes and then I open up my game again.I've now realised that this may seem effective and may save me spewing off my stack, but it is in effect a form of tilt in it's own right. Tightening up too much and getting even marginal push/fold decisions wrong will be costing me money.

The other leak I've identified when playing six tables of 6 max hyper turbos is that the action is so fast that I tend to just go all in or fold.Now although against better players this would mean my ranges are more balanced and it would be harder to put me on a hand,$7 players are only really focussed on their own cards and most wouldn't notice me trying to get more value by min raising stronger hands and shoving weaker ones. ( for example)

I mentioned playing 75 games last night.I only started six tabling towards the end of my play and I went to bed wondering how much I could make over a 7 hour day if I played 24 per hour.From reading the Two Plus Two forum today I think the answer is not as much as I thought! I've currently got a 5% roi over 832 six max hypers but I would need a sample of many thousands for it to be truly meaningful.Apparently most winning players make more from rakeback ( player points on Stars and the VIP bonus system)than they do from the games.

I also now realise that with 150-250 buy-ins recommended to be able to comfortably deal with the crazy hyper turbo swings,I really would be just taking a shot if I put aside $900 to take a 30 buy-in shot at the $30 level.I may do it anyway just for kicks and give myself a 10 buy-in stop loss limit to keep me within my gulp limit over any given session.

Ok,that's more than enough for a quick post on leaks.Back soon...

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Stay or Go?

From my school days I'm still best friends with the S-man,The Miami Trout( though I need to get back in touch again soon as it's been too long) and a girl I'll call L who I swap birthday cards with every year.Our birthdays are just over a week apart and I think we did have a hazy shag against a tree many years ago after smoking a ton of weed!( she has a partner now I think!)

Anyway L sent me a text today asking if I'd like to go to a school reunion curry in December.I replied saying "Hmmm and meet all the people I've managed to avoid over the last 20 yrs".I did add that it would be nice to catch up with L as it's been a few years.I also said I'd have a wee think about it and get back to her.

I remember seeing a similar idea on the once popular "Friends Reunited" website a few years back and thinking I'd rather puke up my own pelvic bone than meet a lot of people I haven't seen for 20 years.My theory being that I've stayed in touch with the people I still want to be friends with and an evening listening to how fantastically well everyone is doing and how great their kids are would be a mind numbingly dull experience.

I've a terrible memory too and once or twice down the years I've been enthusiastically greeted by a "stranger" I went to school with, and although they always seem to remember me, I stare blankly at them trying to recall who the hell they are!

Still,it's only a night out for a curry,I'll be going with L ( and maybe the s-man if he's up for it)and it might not be that bad.Hmmmmmm!

No poker yet this week, though I do plan on hitting the felt at the weekend as usual.I'll also be watching my recording of German Pius Heinz winning the WSOP main event title on ESPN as I play.I did find it funny that the news made Britains top selling tabloid paper who ran with the headline ( not on the front page!) " Hoodie wins Poker world series title".Hopefully his win will encourage plenty more German fish to play in my games at Stars!

I've been playing a ton of Modern Warfare 3 this week and I'm not sure I like it as much as Black Ops.The maps all seem small and it seems like it's back to being all about fast reactions and who has the best connection instead of being about outplaying my opponents.

The chat sound quality is dreadful too which doesn't help when playing with friends.Maybe I'll like it better when I know the maps better and I find a weapon I like using.Anyone who has watched me play poker ( live or via Yahoo IM) would be amazed that the same guy who sweeps through beat after beat without blinking at the tables turns into a completely frustrated raving ranting lunatic when playing Call of Duty at times!

Ok,thanks for reading.Back soon...

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Sunday, November 06, 2011

Fruity Hall of Famer...

After making steady progress at the $7 6 max Hyper turbo's I hit a brick wall on Friday night and barely won a hand.I even saved a couple of the worst runner runner bad beat hands for posting here, before remembering that bad beat stories only just pip hearing about other peoples dreams on most folks...

In days gone by I would have stuck up a soul searching post yesterday about swings,variance and all that jazz, but I've played so many sng's I'd almost be shocked if I didn't run into 20 buy-in downswings on a fairly regular basis.It did make me think though that if I step up to take a shot at the $30's, I'll have to quickly increase my gulp limit ( the amount I can lose in a night without it bothering me) from about $300 to well over $500.

I've just downloaded Jared Tendlers "The Mental Game of Poker" for my Kindle and maybe reading that can help me with gulp limits and taking shots at higher levels.If reading it is going to help save me money, I'm half expecting page one to read " Don't pay any attention to other bloggers football/horse tips"! I've not been in a bookies since the Grand National and after Pekan King and St Neots let me down yesterday I don't plan on donating again for a while! The old phrase about never seeing a skint bookie comes to mind..

Before placing those losing bets and going to Ibrox yesterday to watch Rangers beat Dundee Utd 3-1, I popped into G-Force games shop and picked up my copy of Modern Warfare 3.It's not officially released until Tuesday and my first impressions of it are that it seems like a slightly improved version of MW2.

Despite having a new game I only played it for an hour or so before hitting the virtual felt.After my crap run continued over my first two sets of four games I could feel myself starting to get frustrated.I took a break and when I came back I managed to win some flips,get some hands to hold and eventually sneaked back into profit for the weekend.

I like listening to the excellent 2+2 Pokercast as I'm playing or when out walking Nacho and this week the two Canadian presenters were interviewing new Poker Hall of Fame inductee,

As someone with barely any accent at all, I think I can get away with that one....

Back soon...

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Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Who are Ya? ( and Monthly Stats)

Pokerstars $3283 ( + $366) Party $604
Total $3887

Considering I only play poker at weekends these days I'm not too unhappy at only making $366 last month over 569 sngs.( mostly all hyper turbos and no play at Party at all) Towards the end of the month I also found it easy enough to play without using a HUD as it's the only way I can get Stars new hotkeys to work.

Playing four tables instead of 6-8 makes it easier to keep track of the play and I found the best way to assign ranges etc was simply to label players in my mind as regulars or randoms.Even after playing over 500 hypers I'm still not entirely sure if I prefer open raising for 2.5-3 bb preflop or just shoving all in during the early stages with playable hands.Against decent players only raising 2.5-3bb preflop with monsters and shoving the rest of my range would be very easy to expoit, but these are $7 games and for the most part I don't need to mix it up too much.

The next step up from the $7 hypers is straight to $30 and I'm tempted to give them a go with the stipulation that I'll drop back down to the $7's if I lose 40 buy ins.Only my nitty bankroll management and the thought of losing $1200 is stopping me at the moment!

Of course if I wanted to make some real money I'd withdraw my whole poker roll and buy shares in handcream companies.The girls in my team at work are obsessed by applying the stuff and don't seem to like it when they ask me about some complaint they're dealing with or some other problem and I offer the solution "Just put on some more hand cream".

Perhaps I'd be better off donating my poker roll to the local council who have decided to spend some of my hard earned taxes paying Peter Andre to switch on the Xmas lights in the town.The local rag even described him as a mega star! He had a couple of minor hits years ago and would have faded into complete obscurity if he hadn't been married to that mega trollope Jordan.

Mind you, maybe he is a mega star these days.Watching tv this morning the presenters were about to interview Cher.Now there's a mega star I thought to myself... before some no-mark Cheryl Cole look a like appeared.Cher Lloyd apparently.Never heard of her!

Anyway it's not been a bad week so far.I'm looking forward to catching up with Step A for a pub meal and to visiting my sister + nephew on before the weekend.I'm also seeing a woman about a dog tomorrow and buying the new Call of Duty:Modern Warfare 3 game on Saturday.( getting it early!)

Back soon...

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