Friday, July 28, 2006

Pimp My Ride

Damn I haven't blogged in a few days I guess I'm getting lazy. The dog days of summer have brought my pulse rate to a nice even 44 and my blood pressure is probably hovering around 90/50. Those are good numbers right Iak?

Played in the Full Tilt $20K last night and made it just over two hours and went out in 133rd. Too bad only the Top 108 paid. Oh well I'm learning to advance without cards. My stack got too low and with so many big stacks it was find a hand and push. I finally got 55 UTG and pushed hoping for a double but got called by AQ who hit a Q on the turn and an Ace on the River.

Also I grinded out a win playing cash after nearly being stacked within the first 15 minutes. I didn't reload and I put myself on a mission to get back to even so I played position and I bluffed at scary boards and I fought my way back.

I've been card dead and catching tough breaks for much too long lately which of course sucks but I really think its going to help my cash game in the long run. Because of this I'm working on playing in position, I'm working on my reads, I'm figuring out who to try and isolate, and I'm learning how to time my bluffs.

Through this card slump I'm still winning which makes me excited to see what I can do if I put a nice run of cards together. Hopefully my game will be diverse and I'll be a tough read which should bode well at the $2/5 NL table.

Smokkee hit Vegas last night so it looks like we're going to hit up MGM for some cash games as well as playing in the Caesars tournament and getting out to Red Rock. Looks like another ride in the $10 Mini-Van.

Hey since this is such a lame post here's a list of bloggers who have ridden in the famous $10 Druggie Buggy.

Smokkee and the Love Elf
Weak and Mrs. Weak

Someday maybe you too can go for a ride. And speaking of rides this is how Bobby Bracelet really rolls.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Weekend Revival

They say sometimes you need to change the way you play so this weekend I mixed things up a bit.

Friday consisted of no poker. I did work hard on analyzing my Fantasy Baseball teams as we get close to the two-thirds pole in a long season. I'm first, second, third, and sixth so I have a realistic shot at three pennants this year. I also watched a double-header of baseball as I caught my two teams back-to-back. I wathced the Marlins win against Shitsburgh on the MLB package then caught the Cardinals smoke the Dodgers for the umpteenth time in row on one of the Vegas Fox Channels. It was a nice relaxing day other than watching Iak take down a chopped first in the $6500 Guarantee of Full Tilt.

Saturday Carmen and I did the tourist thing and for the first time since I've been to Vegas I went into the pit. Don't worry I'm thinking of making this only a quarterly thing, even though I'll be at the sports book once Football starts, but it was a nice change of pace from the grind of playing poker for a living.

Being the ever good boyfriend I even sat down with Carmen and put $40 in a Mr. Cashman machine. I can honestly say what a waste of fucking money. I really tried hard to find the appeal that some 40 million tourists seem to thoroughly enjoy but for some reason I couldn't turn my mind into some pile of oatmeal. At least give me a lever to pull of something. I looked around at all the mostly brain dead seniors putting the last of their social security checks into the machines in probable hopes of winning enough for a months supply of meds and in most cases it was to no avail.

In most cases I add but not this one. In the keep coming forever lure of big jackpots some ancient lady with a bad taste in polyester hit a Wheel of Fortune game for $420,000. After all the hoopla, and photo-ops, and traffic jams--the winning machine was right in a main aisle of course--there seemed to be a new life that entered the casino. These slot players started pumping money and hitting buttons faster than any time since the Swing Era in the hopes of hitting their fortunes. I had to think maybe the casino needed to build a jackpot up before they gave it away again and these poor souls were doing just that, building up a jackpot. It was sad really.

But I had no time to stay sad at my wasted $40 so I grabbed Carmen from her near comotose yet agitated state and took her from the casino building slots area to the casino building craps table. Oh yes, Chris would have been happy as I made my way to one of my favorite places and one that I haven't visited in a long long time.

Man I love craps and I'm not even an action junkie. Its the anticipation of the roll, having like six differnt bets per roll, there's money flying in all different directions, hell it takes four casino employees plus an ever present pit boss to keep the game running. That to me is excitement.

The table we got was a wild one. The side Carmen and I played from was rolling numbers like crazy. We were keeping the dice for at least three or four points each and we started to get the place rocking. Then the dice would get to the other side and it was cold as ice. Come outs of 3, 2, 12, before finally hitting 4 for the point, only to then immediately roll a 7. But the good thing was it was five steps forward two steps back so we were at least making money.

Carmen has only played craps once before and after Saturday I know she's going to want to go back. Once every three months baby, or whenever someone comes to town, whichever is first. Yea right? Seriously.

Carmen got on a roll, where she hit five for the point the proceeded to roll about six 6s, four 8s, three 9s, before she hit the point. She managed to do this a few times before the dreaded seven out line away but we got paid. I shot after her and I got hot too.

7, 7, lets bet a yo, 7, nice but damn lets bet another yo, boom 11. The table was going wild and I hadn't even rolled a point yet. I finally rolled a six but before I payed off that six I hit a handful of numbers including the hard ten and hard eight which everyone was piling on at my convincing. I was on a roll.

It was one of my hotest times ever rolling on the table and what even made it better was this old Cajun (great)grandma that was standing beside me a hootin' and a hollerin'.

She had this deep gravely voice with a definite backswamp Cajun accent and she couldn't have been more than five foot tall. She was all tucked in her walker, in my best guess so that if she got too excited she wouldn't go tumbling to the ground.

She smoked those extra long Virginia slims which always seemed to have at least two inches of ash dangling on the end. It was probably because they were getting crushed as she kept the pack in the front pocket of her too tight pants along with continually banging back and forth against the arms of her Walker.

Speaking of pants she had them pulled up to senior citizen level in most places except in the area where her hip kept smacking the walker. That and a probable too- fast-to-the-bathroom-I-don't-wanna-miss-a-roll trip had her shirt tucked into her granny panties which were on proud display for only me and the ever-apparent cocktail waitress to see. If we were losing I might have been appalled but since the dice were hot she was high-fiving me so really what did I care?

Poor lady though, she had to meet the bus, (short or long I'll let you decide) and she kept looking at her watch knowing that the fun was coming to an end. Well if you play craps long enough the fun always comes to and end but she got out in time. I'll probably never see this poor old woman again but some of lifes satisfactions are enjoying a moment in time with a complete stranger as we'll both have our memories of a late Saturday evening spend at the Red Rock kicking ass at craps.

I did pull myself away from the crap table before it got cold so after losing at Mr. Cashman and a quick appetizer at T-Bones, one of the best restaurants in Vegas, I still managed to leave up a buy-in from the $1/2 NL game. So for a night away from the Poker tables, playing the role of tourist, meeting this crazy Cajun women, and getting my fix at the crap table, I still won a buy-in. Go figure.

Vegas Rocks. Pack all your shit and get out here. I did. What a great move. Oh yea and mix it up sometimes.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Spelling Bee

That's right!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Cry me a River

Let's start with

Is that beautiful or what? How about this?

Too bad I bubbled when my AT ran into T9 and I lost to runner runner runner flush again. It was clubs this time instead of spades. What's up with the brothers yo?

I tried one of those coin flip things early on in the Mookie and my TT ran smack into the Bracelet's AK. Did you hear that ladies? What are these coin flips and why do we attempt something that is a coin flip? Help me out here cash game players. I like 80% or better myself.

Ok I whined about my MTT unsuccesses so I played a token SnG on FT. If MTTs are bad enough SnGs are like pulling fingernails off with pliers. It was a $6 non non non non turbo and it only took 115 minutes to finish in the top four and win a token. You'll be happy to know two nails remain but I heard they grow back quickly in the desert heat.

So back to cash games. I sit in a FT $100 buy-in and just as soon as I do my boy JJ hits the rail. Remember I bitched about not hitting sets? Well I hit a set of 9s on a board of 9-T-J and we get all our money in and guess what, my opponent turns over QK. Well variance says it's my turn and the river is another Q and my full house is good.

I hit another set in the first orbit and it holds up and I take down two pair for another nice pot. Then in hand ten I get another set of 8s on a board of 7-8-9. Dude leads out with $4 into a $5 pot and I re-raise to $12. Next homey goes all-in for $65. It folds back to me and after going into the tank I lay down my set. Good thing as dude had the JT for the straight. Nice lay down sir.

Within another orbit I catch two pair and get put all-in. I make the call and beat a pair of Aces and take down another big pot with my 8-6. Wow twenty minutes and I'm up $200. I lose with bottom two pair to top two pair but I get out cheap and only lose $50.

SnGs- 2 hours 1 token
MTTs- 20 minutes (-$11)
Cash- 1 hour +162.20
Bloggers in Vegas- Priceless

Thanks for all your help but it looks like my question was answered.

SnGs are for donkeys, MTTs are for egos, Cash Games are for players. Be a player and not a hater. Right Iggy? And don't be afraid to Brand boys and girls.

Also don't forget Miami Don bobble head night coming to stadium or arena near you.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Which Way Did He Go

Let's start with I'm usually just joking. I have some fun with my boys Iak and Waffles either by posting or leaving comments and my shtick is promoting cash games and ragging on MTTs and SnGs. Look play whatever you like, I certainly don't care, but don't get your panties in a bunch when I talk shit about whatever game you like. Heck, be a loser and go play RAZZ if that's what floats your boat but please stop crying.

Also I talk a lot of smack in the chat boxes during blogger events. If you make a donkey play, particularly one that knocks my ass out, you're going to hear a few Hee Haws if not worse. Again its all shtick, I'm really not a cry-baby or asshole but I will kick your ass if need be. Don't worry I have thick skin so I can take it as well as give it out. I think the only guy I ever suck out on, and its been multiple times is , and he must be used to them because I only get a small fuck you privately in the girlie chat. Don't forget its all about the love you crazy bloggrs! Now that we are all smiling...

....I'm running bad online. Not bad in I lost a few grand bad because 90% of my bankroll is for live play, but bad nonetheless. Most of the frustration is coming from the dreaded MTTs with a little mixed in on the the lower limit cash games I play.

I'm a cash game player its well documented, but when I started playing poker serioulsy it was all my action was MTTs. When I started blogging and playing in the blogger MTTs I was making the final table about one out of every three events, now I can't sniff the top 50% of the field.

When I was doing well I wanted to put in more time to improve at MTTs, now that I'm running fowl, I really want to improve at them. Also, I'm now going to lie, seeing some bloggers who I really respect making big cashes and qualifying for World Series events only get my competitive juices flowing more.

So the quandary is, say fuck the MTTs and stick to cash games, or use some of profits from the cash games to work on the MTTs? Will I screw up my cash games working on MTTs or can I become well versed in both? I'm totally undecided at this point.

Anyway I know this is a passing thing but what do you do in an MTT when you are completely card dead and every attempt at a steal or bluff runs into a calling station? Or your repeatedly getting at least 6:1 on draws but you miss like twenty in row? Or the highest pocket pair you see in a week is 88 and when you do see those small pocket pairs you only catch one set in thirty attempts. I won't even mention the bad beats and suckouts.

I'm at a crossroads and there is nothing wrong with that. I'm going to try and clear my head playing some live 1/2NL at the MGM tomorrow and I'll see where that takes me. I'm also contemplating playing in the Caesars MTT on Friday, which is the same structure as the bloggers event except you get T4500. If all goes well I hope to be playing some lucrative 2/5NL at the Red Rock by Sunday.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

WSOP, Pauly, and Some Poker

I'm blowing off the Blogger weekend Sunday post to instead bring you up-to-date on a fun Friday spend at the Rio. See Waffles, Iak, Jules, or Kat for details on our wonderful Sunday afternoon spend at the Red Rock Casino.

I did though finally sit at the super juicy $2/5NL with Jules at the Red Rock. Jules, some low-key pro and myself were easily the best three players at the table, and even though I just missed out on numerous hands I still only lost $12 after being down $300. The game is so loose that you can make moves and if you do have the nuts you'll get paid off handsomely. I'm going to start mixing in up more between $1/2 at MGM and $2/5 at the Red Rock. Before too long I hope fully graduate to the $2/5 game though.

So Friday Carmen and I went down to the Rio to watch some WSOP action and to meet up with Pauly. Before meeting Pauly, Carmen and I toured the Amazon room for a while and I must say I was kind of in shock. For the most part it was a massive room full of hard core degenerates.

Now I'm quite familiar with a bathing and hygiene, and I do my best to wear something decent when I leave the house--well sometimes I might too often wear my Miami gear but I'm branding right Iggy--but these guys are pathetic. The smell of body odors overpowers the senses. The sight of raggedy jeans and shorts or ripped and faded T-shirts are abundant. I even notice so many players wearing flip-flops and old yucky sandals probably for the sheer ease of not wasting an extra five seconds to tie their shoelaces in their dash to get seated at a table. No wonder everyone complains about Annie Duke and her foot odor issues.

I'm sure most of the pros have stylists so they definitely stand out in this rather sad crowd but like playing KJ under the gun I don't understand the thought process in hygiene technique or clothes selection. I'm very dissapointed to be associated with this group of "players."

Anyway we finally meet Pauly and the first thing Carmen wants to do is check out the Hooker Bar. Of course. Being that its 3:30 in the afternoon, Pauly warns her that the talent will probably be non-existant because, well, its 3:30 in the afternoon. Vegas might be a 24 hour city but I guess Hookers need their rest too.

After dinner with Pauly, Carmen was excited to watch the final table of the HORSE event and the two hundred person line did not deter her. She walked straight to the front of the line acting like she owed the place and not one person said a word. Maybe it was her top? We waited for like thirty minutes before they let us into the seating area then it was like another thirty minutes before they did intros and got down to play.

By this time my back was hurting and my ass was numb but she was having such a great time that I stayed with her for a while longer. These events are tough to take. You can't see the table but they do have plasmas all over so it's like your watching it on TV only its live. The have an announcer that calls the action so combined it gives you some idea of what is going on.

After an hour or so enough was enough and I left to check out the rest of the scene leaving Carmen in her star-struck state at the final table. I wondered across a great cash game and actually railed that on and off for a few hours. Andy Black was playing and the table was joined by none other than Johnny Fucking Chan.

The game was $25 ante with one $50 big blind. You also got $100 from each player if you successfully pulled off the hammer. Each player had at least $25K behind them so I has hoping to see some fireworks. Here are a few good hands I saw.

Black beat some guy for his last $6K when they got all in after a flop of 7-5-3. Black had 99 and the other dude had 7-6.

This red-headed dude with a fine looking sister playing the role of groupie by sitting behind him got into a pot with some other unknown player. They bet hot and heavy on all three streets with a board of A-T-7-4-A. The red-head had QQ and the other dude had KK. Man I was impressed. Those Aces didn't scare either player and the pot wound up being around $12K.

Later the red-head and Chan got into a bluffing battle that Chan won when both players had 4th pair but Chan had the better kicker. This brings us to, by far, the largest ever real money pot I've ever seen live.

Everyone folds around to Chan who raises to $400, the standard, in the CU. Red-Head was the button and he was the only caller. Flop comes 9c-9d-7c and RH bets $1K. Chan insta calls. Turn is 6s and RH counts out twenty-five $100 bill adds five black chips and makes it $3K to go. Chan without hesitation re-raises to $10K. The RH quickly fires in his brick of hundreds announcing all-in. Chan calls.

River is 2h and I'm thinking no help to either player. No sooner does that thought process works it way through my head RH turns over 5c-8c for the straight. Chan stares him down and you can almost see steam playing out of his ears as he throws his cards into the muck. Chan gets up and storms from table with his head down flying through the nearest exit doors. RH hands are shaking as he pulls in what I counted to be a $52K pot.

Wow RH semi-bluffed on a flush draw, Chan reads him right, but somehow RH catches the gut-shot. I'm thinking Chan reviewed the scenarios and must have finally concluded no way dude has 5-8 or 8-T. Wow Chan was pissed. The consensus from the guys at the table was that Chan had A-9 but we'll never know.

About four hands later RH raises gets one caller and the flop is 7-7-2. Check, check, turn is a 2 RH bets, caller folds and RH turns over the hammer. The table went crazy not only becasue RH played the hammer but becasue he nailed the flop as well. The boys each gladly tossed RH a black chip for this stunt and also, for what I can only imagine, busting Johnny Fucking Chan.

Vegas Rules.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Saturday Day Two: The Real Main Event

Waking up Saturday morning I was full of that nervous excitement that preceeds a Tournament with the Stature of the Bloggers Summer Classic. I play cards for a living, 95% cash games, and for the most part its just another day at the office, no nervousness, no anticipation, but for some Tournaments and this one in particular the energy was flowing.

Carmen and I got down to Caesars around 9:15 to meet up with Iak and Waffles, (did you really stiff Iak on the cab? Waffles=George Costanza.) and to beat the registration crowd. Good thing too.

My starting table was tough but fun as I had the murderer's row of chicks in seats 4,5,6 with Jules, Stina, and Eva Can't Hang. Two others I remember were Statik and Larry.

The table was aggressive from the beginning especially with raises then re-raises pre-flop which made for some difficulty even stealing. Really there was no limping allowed and every blind was challanged throughout. Three hands in a a row I raised only to be re-raised by either Jules or Stina. The first two I mucked but the third time I made a stand and called Stina's re-raise. I was able to push her off her hand on the turn and wound up raking a decent pot.

At this point I was mostly card dead and with stealing such a challenge I changed my strategy and started calling more raises in position hoping to use my cash game post-flop skills to my advantage and it worked for a while.

In MP I raised with AT sooted and called a raise by Statik from the blinds. The flop came KK9, he led out and I re-raised him 2.5x. He went into the tank for a while and mucked showing AA. I couldn't let this opportunity pass so I made sure I showed the table my bluff. The situation was perfect for me to get him to lay down AA since he had a nice chip stack and we were only down to six tables so I can see him making the lay down. He did go on to make the final table and finish in 6th so good job Statik.

Eventually my table broke and we were down to the thirty players. I joined the table with Hoyazo and F-Train as the short stack, probably the shortest stack left in the tourney with T3500. Quickly though I doubled up twice and got my stack up to just over T14,000. This however is where my luck ended. A mystery lady limped under the gun, it folded around to me in the SB and I pushed with AK. The limper thought a minute then called with 33. No help and it was over, I finished in 22nd. I'm happy with my performance but, like everyone else, I was hoping to get a sniff of the final table.

I did stay around with Hoy for awhile and we watched what only could be deemed as: Live Poker is Rigged. We witnessed suck-outs galore along with some Poker Stars classic; suck re-sucks. The environment was electric, especially with so many suckouts that the room was going wild.

Congrat to F-Train on the win and to everyone who made the final table. Also I want to send a shout-out to Bobby Bracelet for the late afternoon entertainment. I'd never met the dude before but I must say he can work a room. You killed me brother. Did you hear that ladies?

Some other highlites from Saturday included rides in my $10 Druggie Buggy from Caesars to MGM for Hoyazo, Smokkee, Love Elf/Ms. Smokkee, Aaron, and Amy. Once there we met Iak at the Studio Cafe for dinner although we all seemed to order breakfast. Go figure.

Losing Smokkee within two minutes of eating and losing Waffles for the rest of the day after he busted out after the Main Event. Did you walk past some dudes handing out the Porn Cards on your walk home Waffles? I'd guess yes. The real question is did you order two girls or just one?

Talking to The Rooster about his exploits with seven card stud in Atlantic City.

Having a couple, yes just a couple, of drinks with Iak, Hoyazo, and Iggy at the bar at the Excal. Some of that conversation was the funniest I had all weekend. We won't mention the other parts.

Finally getting to spend some time with Hoff at above mentioned bar while dissing on the Kid Rock look alike. We even convinced Veneno that is was Kid Rock and almost had her talking to him except she turned out to be too shy.

Between grinding at the tables the previous week and playing in the Main Event I took a pass on playing poker Saturday night. I did rail a bunch of the crew before making my way home for a good nights sleep.

Another fabulous day in Vegas with all of my new found friends.

Day Three more rides in my $10 Mini-Van and breaking my $2/5NL cherry at the Red Rock with Jules.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Friday- Day One: Bloggers Invade the MGM

I'll start by saying if you didn't make it to Vegas for the Bloggers Summer Classic you missed out on a fantastic time. For those who have been to this event before you know what I'm talking about but if you've never been you need to do whatever it takes to make the next one. Bonus whore, save all your loose change, rob a bank, max your credit card, let your gal bang George Clooney, do whatever it takes but get your ass out to Vegas.

Having the extreme benefit of living in the greatest city on the planet, no not New York I'm talkin' Vegas baby, I've been able to meet a few select bloggers during their trips here the past few months. Now these select few are the bloggers who regularly play in the weekly events like The MATH or The Mookie, kind of the new-school crew. So since I've only lived in Vegas for just over four months and only meeting a few bloggers what better way than having 100+ of these maniacs all show up on your doorstep for a weekend of non-stop partying and poker.

My weekend started Friday afternoon when I met my good friend and fantastic blogger Iak for lunch at the MGM. After our meal we headed over to the fish tank to devirginize our boy for his first action at live casino poker. Luckily we got a seat at the same table which gave me the pleasure to observe the man and his moves and true to form it was a rather fitting experience. Right to the point, Iak got stacked within his first hour when his King high straight had the displeasure of meeting up with 9-7 sooted which the donkey in seat four chased to the river and won with runner runner to make a full house. Like any good virgin it was insert and squirt and the stack was gone.

I also had the misfortunes of my first losing session after an 11 session win streak. I raised with JJ and saw a flop heads up come with J-8-2 rainbow. My opponent led into me, I re-raised and he put me all-in. I'm feeling mighty confident when my man turns over J-6 spades. Got to love the push with TP bullshit kicker but you can obviously see where this story is going. Yep runner runner spades and I lose $250 in the blink of an eye. Can't complain too much as I knew that bad beat day was coming at some point after my record high win streak. Why does it always have to be spades though?

I played for another hour or so with nothing eventful happening when suddenly I heard over the loudspeaker the brush calling off all these weird names to play some game called HORSE. Well well the bloggers had arrived to my home casino and it was time for some action. I saw where the table was and made my way over after a brief bathroom break. Now knowing or recognizing anyone I walked up to one of the tables and just introduced myself. I of course had some trepidation, in that I've only been blogging for about five months and I wasn't sure if anyone would even recognize who the fuck I was. Luckily right away Hoyazo stood up and introduced himself to me.

He and I chatted for a while as he played Horse with some fellow bloggers. He introduced me to StB, Joaquin "The Rooster", Garthmeister, Aaron, and Byron.

There was also this short haired chick in seat 9 that nobody seemed to be talking to. She didn't introduce herself to anyone and she just went about her business, well that and everyone else's business. She had this perpetual scowl, the one with the imprinted creases and linemarks on her brow, as she barked out orders at the dealer and berated the other players about their bad and in her opinion inept play. She was the one of only two people I saw that were miserable all weekend. Her and some Yankee hating dude who just so happens to be too cool for school. Oh well some people are just piss ants. Maybe I'll find her blog someday and I can try to cheer her up. Yea right.

It was then I saw Dr. Pauly make his entrance into the Poker Room. Taking his advice I promptly went up and introduced myself and to my surprise he actually knew who I was and that I lived in Vegas. Heck we even exchanged info and are planning a trek to Red Rock with Carmen and Grubby. I guess Pauly and I can play some poker while Grubby and Carmen take off in search of Mr. Cashman.

Anyway if you've never met Pauly before he's an awesome guy, really the host with the most. As I was talking with him many people approached and he made sure he introduced me to everyone. About this time Carmen showed after her shift and she got to meet Pauly also. We made our way over to the sports bar where Pauly introduced us to all of the old-school crew. We met Change 100, Derek, Joe Speaker, Al Can't Hang, F-Train, Tokyo James, Donkey Puncher, Veneno and finally The Blogfather himself.

Really it was awesome getting to meet the old school crew all in one swoop. Carmen was actually a little star struck, perhaps a bit giddy, particularly when Pauly and Iggy recognized her from her picture. All the old schoolers were cool as hell and they all went out of their way to make us feel welcomed and part of the whole blogger crew.

Now it was getting to be near midnite and the excitement was building beyond belief. Yes bloggers drank and played poker which I'm sure kept their minds somewhat occupied but barely below the surface a sort of excitement brewed. Apparently the flight had been delayed certainly building up the anticipated arrival.

There was one question asked by Iggy to everyone he met and that was, "Which blogger do you most want to meet in person?" He asked me that question almost immediately and when I gave him my answer he laughed his ass off. He told me my answer was the same answer given to him at least 80% of the time. Yes, the bloggers whose flight was delayed was the same blogger whose arrival was causing all the murmurs in the crowd, and yes the same blogger who was the answer to Iggy's question. Alright boys and girls who was it we were all waiting for? Of course you know the answer to this, none other than:


Waffles called me right after he checked into his room and announced he was on his way to the Poker Room. You must understand a Waffles sighting is probably more rare than an Iggy picture, and in fact the only blogger to have ever previously seen Waffles was Pauly himself and sure enough as Waffles found his way over to Table 15 he was instantly recognized by Pauly.

"Waffles," Pauly cried and it was on. The 2006 WPBT Summer Classic's feature guest was in the house. I got a quick hug from the legend and Carmen was lucky enough to get a photo-op rubbing the freshly clipped head for good luck before Pauly whisked him away to the Sports Book Bar to introduce him to all of the old school.

About that time I finally got called to the Horse table where I spend an hour donking off chips and chatting it up with Hoyazo. Whoever said to learn as many games as possible is off their rocker. Omaha, and Razz are horrible games, and Stud is only played by the Rooster and anyone over 80. I even discovered I'm a complete donkey at Limit Hold'em so good thing No Limit is here to stay baby because none of the other games even come close.

It was nearing 2am and knowing I had an early morning wake-up call for the WBPT Main Event it was time for me to be on my way. I stopped by for a few minutes and watched Carmen and Waffles seated side-by-side at the 1/2 NL table trying to make a few bucks so they could free roll in the morning. I'm not certain who was more excited to be sitting side-by-side but they both had the big grins and seemed to be enjoying their time together.

That my friends new and old is the Day One wrap-up from my eyes. Saturday's Main Event and Sunday's Day of Bliss from the Red Rock will follow soon enough.

Again I can't say enough how awesome the weekend was and hopefully those who didn't make it can start planning again for December. I truly believe I forged some very tight friendships this weekend, ones that will last a life time, and now I definitely know what all the old school was talking about when they said it's all about the people.

Bloggers Rule!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Time to Grind

Can you believe it I took three whole days off from live Poker? With Carmen's parents in town and the bloggers on their way I rested, I studied, and I prepared myself for month long run into the live poker world. Lot's of cash games and some satellites into the WSOP are on my schedule as A7 season is in full gear. I'm going to try and build my bankroll and my game as I prep for the move up to 2/5 and I have to try and get my way into at least 1 WSOP event since the Rio is about a 12 minute drive.

I never understood the fascination with Superman? Clark Kent is a complete tool, humans have never been able to fly, and whats up with the queer outfit? All I know is a pocket full of Kryptonite and I would have ruled the world.

We went to Hoover Dam on Monday which to me is one of the most beautiful places in the country. Not the actual dam itself but the surrounding area is mind blowing. We were smart and started our journey early so we beat all the traffic and we got lucky as it was overcast and only about 95 degrees. (like 75 wherever you live) When we left the line of cars heading to the dam was backed up for like 5 miles, that would have been awful. If you ever get a chance to see Hoover Dam when you make it to Vegas I would highly recommend it. It's only about a 30-40 minute drive and I guarantee you won't be disappointed.

Chris Ferguson cut that nappy hair, shave and get a new hat. Heck anybody that's had the same hair style or the same hat for the last twenty years get a new look. If you've had it for twenty years its certainly not in style now (if it ever was) and signature looks are really kind of lame anyway. Get with the times. Oh and if you wear sunglasses at any low limit game you are a complete tool.

When do we settle the bets from the DADI? Okay it was a long weekend so I'll give you slowpayers some slack but its time to pay the winning team. If you were involved in the bet see Jordans post for paying arrangements. Some guys have paid up many have not. Settle your debts boys.

Liz Lieu enough already.

I'm learning to make scary boards and scare cards my friend. If I can get good reads on my opponents, which has been the case lately, I'm using potential flush boards or scare cards like Aces on the turn to win a lot of decent sized pots. I love doing this with position against players with a semi-knowledge of the game. Now you can't bluff off calling stations but certain tight players will lay down the best hand from time to time.

I called a raise from the button and three of us saw the flop. I can't remember what I had but it was like 6-8o. Flop came with two diamonds and the initial bettor made a small weakish continuation bet. The other guy folded and I went into a small acting mode and said I'll see one more. Yes the turn was the third diamond and I watched the original raiser intently. He thought about it and fired the second bullet and made it like $30 to go. I immediately raise it to $90 and he folds in disgust. I take down nearly $100 pot with 8 high.

I called another raise from the button with 9-7o and a flop comes ten high. I actually hit middle pair and I have a gut shot draw. Initial bettor makes his continuation bet and I call. Turn is an Ace. His face gives a quick look of disgust and I can see the card scares him. He makes a weak continuation bet and I immediately fire over the top. He thinks for a minute and folds but shows his cards, KK. Now I hardly ever show bluffs but I need to here so I can set things up for later when I do have the cards. I turn over my 9-7o and the tables oohs and aahs and the guy goes on insta-tilt.

I then stack a guy when my 6-6 hits a set over his TPTK. He must think I'm bluffing again evident by his check/raise and when I fire back over the top all-in he immediately calls. Gotcha dude. I don't get much action after this hand but I do scoop a lot of small pots as most players are folding whenever I bet at a pot.

Remember scary flops and scare cards not only scare you they probably scare your opponent as well. With a good read use those opportunities to get paid.

Hope everyone had a great fourth and made some money.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Fourth of July Weekend

I love live Poker. I'm aware most of you choose (I use choose because I'm assuming you choose to live where you do) the clicking of the mouse to make your bets as opposed to live action but to me there is no comparison between the two. Most of you probably disagree but hey it's a free country right? I guess that answer is still to be determined but anyway.

I still feel poker is a game that is meant to be played live. Sure most anyone can six table online and peddle nuts all day long but what is the point of that? Is there any skill involved there? No way, it's straight up Bot play if you ask me.

How about all the internet players with their elaborate check raises, making moves they wouldn't dare try live because their heart would be in their throat trying to pull that crap live.

My game has improved drastically and a lot of the reason is live play. I'm playing one table and I'm able to focus on my game and the players in that game, not email, girlie chats, or the five other tables I have open. Yes you can make some serious cash playing online and I know don't hate the player hate the game but since I choose to play live obviously I must emjoy it better.

I love when there's a big pot on the line (pun intended) and I can look into the other players eyes and ask him some questions to see if maybe I can find a tell. Or when they have a monster and their hands shake so bad my cards are in the muck as fast as I can dump them. Or when they make a continuation bet and I can smell the fear knowing their A-K completely missed the T-7-3 flop. Or when for the first time in your life you can play the player and not your cards, man what a boost of confidence.

But hey whatever works. Online, live, home game makes no difference really, it's still all a fun game.

Man the MGM has been juicy so far this weekend. With it being the four day Fourth of July weekend Vegas in off the chain. Friday was packed and today Carmen and I got down there about 3:45 and the poker room was mobbed. They had ten 1/2NL games, two 2/5NL games, one 5/5NL game and even one 5/10NL game. Action central.

So far my weekend has been very profitable, to the tune of about $115.00 an hour. The competition is average, which is actually better than full of donkeys. When you have a bunch of A7's with some knowledge of poker, who probably play a lot online, to me is the best time to make the most money. Sometimes its the clueless donkeys who call you down with second pair and catch a miracle river that cost you the most money. Kind of like making your way through the minefield to get to the prize.

Carmens parents get here tomorrow for a week and she is really excited. Being an only child she's very tight with both her mom and dad so she can't wait to see them. We offered for them to stay here but naturally the decided to stay where the action is so they will be staying at the Golden Nugget. It should be a fun week and it will be capped off with bloggers weekend. So it looks like another fun filled week in Vegas.

As I read somewhere next weekend is about the people but to me its also about the poker. Yes we get to meet in person and have fun but for many its the only chance of the year to get to play some live poker so hopefully you can find some balance between the two. Play some poker, meet some new people, have a few cocktail, hopefully don't get too shit-faced and most of all have some fun. I know I will.

Stay profitable.