Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

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Chinook Winds PacWest $210 No Limit Hold Em Tournament

February 23, 2018

I arrive at what I believe to be the start of L3 and blinds are 100/200. I start with 12,000 in chips and there is a 10k add-on for $100 after the end of this level.

I let the blinds go through me once and call a raise with 98cc and whiff.

A player opens to 500, I 3-bet to 1300 with AQdd and he calls.

Flop is QT6 with two spades. I bet 1250, he makes it 3000, I’m all in, he snaps with TT.

Game over.

No re-entry.

No, seriously. That’s the end of this blog post. I lasted 16 minutes.

I can’t even check into my hotel for another 2+ hours and there are no cash games going yet, so I’m heading to the local one screen movie theater to watch Phantom Thread. I may or may not play some cash later tonight. I’d rather be well rested for the amazingly structured Main Event tomorrow, which is the reason I’m here.

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Marathon Monday: $15/$30 @ Palace – 2/19/18 (Live Blog)

February 19, 2018

12:43 PM: Just got to Palace and missed the $15/$30 game start. Playing some white chip poker while I wait. I’m first up. Blog opener coming soon.

Somehow forgot to mention this in last night’s closing comments but after posting a +$735 in $30/$60, I played 5 hours of $15/$30 and won an additional +$470. Those two sessions put me squarely in the green for 2018!

I’m back!

One of the downsides of $15/$30 going every day at Palace is that I’m playing so much poker my productivity outside of the poker room has fallen off a cliff.

I was a full time pro in 2017, but I averaged less than 160 casino hours a month for the year. So far, in 2018, I logged 220+ casino hours in January and I’m on pace for 190+ in the shortened month of February. That’s a pretty sick volume increase and it’s definitely affected my quality of life. For instance, I haven’t been able to get out of bed for yoga the last few Mondays. I hit snooze on my phone for 90 minutes this morning and then I missed the game start this morning.

I also have reviews for Black Panther, I, Tonya, and Jumanji that I have no idea when I’m going to write. Plus, it’s almost March and I still haven’t written my 2018 Goals out.

Not to mention the shitty partner I have been to my wife, as far as carrying out my duties around the house.

In other words, my balance between poker and life has been slipping dramatically.

With that said, I’m going to take all of tomorrow off to catch up on life and I think I’m going to skip PLO on Wednesday also.

I definitely had more balance when I had two committed days off every week and I really need to work on finding that again.

1:07 PM: Still locked out of $15/$30. I’ve seen the game start for 4.5 hours before someone got up, but I don’t believe this lineup is capable of that. I expect to be in before 2 PM.

1:25 PM: Not planning to post $4/$8 hands but I feel like this one is worth sharing. I open AQ and get cold-called in four spots. Flop is AKJ, I bet and everyone folds. 😂

2:13 PM: They did lock me out until past 2 PM but I’m in now and just posted and got stair-stepped into a 3-bet pot with K2ss and sucked out on T723K. Good start!

Starting lineup: multiple $8/$16 regs that don’t normally play this game, Radio Mike, 80%, nitty older guy, and very solid Palace reg (but he’s drinking already!

2:36 PM: Forgot to mention I snagged +$133 in my $4/$8 warm-up!

2:54 PM: Come back and buy the button, 80%, drunk lady, and another player limp, I raise with KTdd, drunk lady 3-bets, I cap; four us to flop and I double barrel QJ5ccd6d before giving up on 7c river and 80% and drunk lady chop it up with J2 suited.

3:37 PM: This game is off the chains right now. Small samples and all but there are four players in a row with VPIPs of 79%, 86%, 45%, and 53%. All this dead money is making me play more pots too and so far I have been benefiting, winning multiway pots with a lot of one pair hands and a good-sized pot with a set of deuces.

3:55 PM: Yup. I’m playing pots. 15 people limp in front of me, I limp along from cutoff with T9o, Radio Mike raises on button, one of the 80% maniacs 3-bets it, everyone calls, including Radio Mike (lol, nice hand – this is not the time to exercise restraint, buddy).

Flop is 875 with two hearts and it’s bet, called, and raised in front of me. I 3-bet because GAMBOL and wind up closing the action and getting position. Great success!

We are still 5-handed to Jc turn and they all call me and I get paid off in one spot on As river.

Cha ching!

4:07 PM: One limper, I raise JTdd, 80% and drunk lady are in, four of us to T53 flop. I get called by two of them. They have QJ and Q9, which is two outs combined between them. I know this because I didn’t win this pot.

4:16 PM: Just realized I didn’t say what I had at 2:54. Edited with my holding included.

4:22 PM: Radio Mike informs me that the drunk lady didn’t raise that hand I made a straight in – 80% did. That’s unfortunate because the lady said “I raise” and then put out three bets (next to act) which means the dealer cost me $90. Booooooo.

4:29 PM: Radio Mike may have possibly ruined our game. He has given half his stack to the lady and she now has over $2500 in front of her and just spoke the dreaded words of “I should leave now. I think I’m even.”

Meanwhile I’m getting rage texts from Radio Mike. Let it out, pal!

And now she’s grabbing empty racks. What the hell, Mike?

5:03 PM: A fortunate seat change. I have direct position on the two 80% players and almost have the Jesus Seat (64% on my direct left, but he’s probably next to leave).

When I changed seats I posted in the cutoff, called with 32hh in a multiway pot, flopped a flush draw and paid three bets, before donking my flush on the turn second-to-last to act and getting raised. Lady calls $60 cold and I just call because it should be fairly obvious I have a flush and I’m still getting raised by the flop 3-bettor. River is a blank, it checks around and my hand is good.

5:30 PM: 80% has felted and he actually tightened up today, finishing with a 71% VPIP for the day, by far his lowest total in a session I’ve played with him.

5:41 PM: New blog nick name: Curious George is in the game. This is an original creation from Blackjack’s blog but he’s used so many of my names that I feel okay taking one of his!

5:51 PM: El Torcho has graced us with his presence and is sitting with $400. This game is stupid right now. Just stupid.

6:05 PM: Couple brutal pots in a row. The Torch’s torchy nature and crazy lines just cost me a lot of chips with a hand I would never even consider sticking around with against someone else.

Then I flop the nut flush draw, turn a straight draw and river a pair vs flopped trips and lost more bets than necessary because someone else wanted to bluff the turn.

Just raised multiple limpers from SB with QJss and got called down by Curious George on a favorable KTxQQ runout.

6:15 PM: The drunk lady is still here and she just open-limped and I iso’d with K7dd and lost to her on KJ5T8 because she had… T5o.

Fomo, Joker, fomo!

6:24 PM: A chop and a raise-and-take-it while the lady is away from the table and someone actually says something about a setup and how slow the game is. Really makes you wonder about some of these people.

They don’t make games much better than this one.

6:53 PM: VPIPs across the table in our “slow” game: 66%, 24%, 37%, 87%, 38%, 61%, 29%, 28%, and 61%.

Funniest thing about those numbers is the player that complained is the one with the 24%. 👏🏻👏🏻

7:00 PM: That lady did not leave after snatching up half of Radio Mike’s stack and she has turned that $2700 stack into $4. But she’s coming back, she says.

I was the recipient of an expert slow play. One limper, Curious George raises, I defend BB with 44 and three of us see J99cc flop. Everybody checks. Turn is 3c, I bet and they both call. River…. 4c. I bet and the limper calls me with A9 (no club).

7:04 PM: Lady is back and says “I had to get my bank to increase my limit. It worked.” Music to everyone’s ears.

“$200 over”… not so much.

7:09 PM: Five minutes later… “$400 over…” – that’s a little better.

Meanwhile I somehow got QQ to hold up on a J9758 runout with three opponents on the river.

7:19 PM: Pot of the day alert! 6-way cap pre and I have TT on the button. Flop is JT3dd and it is either three bets or capped again with at least five of us seeing turn. 6 of hearts on turn and I get check-raised by Curious George and I get three bets in four ways. River is 4 of diamonds and they all check to me. It’s painful to check back here because how do flushes check river? But how the hell does no one have diamonds? I check and win this monster.

7:27 PM: Torch opens and I defend 96hh and flop a flush and we cap but the heart on turn costs me about a million dollars because Torch has 32hh.

7:50 PM: Oh man, the heater is real. We are up HEAPS.

Torch straddles, lady calls, I 3-bet KJo, Curious George calls, and Torch 4-bets (not a cap) and we all call. Flop is QTx with two hearts (I have Kh) and it gets capped again. Turn is 9h and I raise when Torch bets, Curious George calls $60 cold and Torch calls. River is black 4 and Torch donks again. I raise, Curious George calls $60 again and Torch folds. 😂

My hand is good.

8:28 PM: Noooooooo! Chink in the armor. JJ < QT.

9:16 PM: Running good even when I’m running bad: two limps, button raises, lady cold calls SB, I defend 52ss. Five ways to J52 two clubs. Both of us blinds check, but Curious George donks and everybody just calls. I’m in great relative position to check-raise the field on the turn if it’s a good card, so that’s my plan. I’m going to execute on 4s turn but Curious George bets and the next player raises. Lady cold calls the $60 and… I fold… painfully. River is the 4c (yay!) and Curious George donks again and the turn raiser just calls. The lady next to me now shows me J2 (!) in disgust and folds it. George turns over 85 for a pair of 5s and the other player has A3o for a straight.

9:35 PM: The lady to my right has finally called it quits. Her final stats: 216 hands, 84% VPIP (and that doesn’t include the times she checks her big blind in an unraised pot), 13% PFR. She peaked around $2700 and felted that… and then felted an additional $1500 or so. I think most of it is in my stack now.

10:12 PM: My wife, The Leak, is playing in the other $15/$30 game and just sent me this text:

“I have K6hh in BB. 6 players see 952hh flop. I bet, 2 callers, [player x] raises. 5 players see 5 turn. I xc. River 9 and I call [player x] who has 44.”

Nice hand, honey!

10:57 PM: Running pretty good still. My wife’s game is definitely the better one now though. I’ve been eating which is why I haven’t updated, but I just saw a player add on $10… to his $15 remaining… in a $15/$30 game. Good luck, sir.

11:16 PM: Just running pure. Open KQdd, flop JT9, capped three ways, turn Q, and I’m still good for all of it.

Curious George opens, button calls, I call KJo (a hand I would usually fold here but CG is super wide tonight – in fact, two hands later I fold KQ in cutoff to a single raise), and big defends. Flop KQx and it checks around. Turn is another blank and I know CG can’t check again so I go for a delayed check-raise and get both him and the button for two big bets each. River jack and they both fold.

Limp along multiway with A3hh. Flop 654hh. CG bets, call, call, I raise, cold call, all call. Turn 2h. No waiting. George donks again, I raise, and we are heads up. Jh river, he donks again, because I’m running that good tonight. I raise, he calls.

11:53 PM: First bad run out in a while: s3 (56/17) opens, s4 calls, I 3-bet QQ, Curious George calls it all, s3 caps. Flop 862, s3 bets, I raise, CG calls, s3 calls. Turn ace, and s3 donks (ugh), I call, and CG folds. River Ace (I like that), he bets I call and I lose to A8cc.

11:58 PM: My game just crumbled and now my wife is at my table. Groan.

12:18 AM: After having no Overs all day, 7 of 8 players now have them at my table and I get the pleasure of firing $50 bets at my wife when we are heads up. 🤦🏻‍♂️

12:41 AM: Second game just broke and I’m letting The Joker have position because I have the good problem of having waaaaay too many chips.

12:54 AM: Joker gets to be The Joker on the first pot we play. He opens, three call, I defend T7hh. Flop 975, I donk, which makes Joker have to play his hand straight up and if he clears the field, oh well. He just calls and everyone else folds. Yummy. Turn Ace of diamonds. Sigh. I can’t really bet this card but he can definitely bluff it. I check-call. River is 8 of diamonds or something. I check-call again and he went running diamonds with KTdd.

Next hand, Curious George limps, button limps, I raise AJo from SB, BB calls, Curious George back-raises, button calls, and I cap. Flop J53, I bet, George raises, button calls, and I call. Turn 4, I check-raise in Overs and they both call. River Queen, I bet, George calls, button folds and I’m good.

1:15 AM: No joke. Player that’s been loud and causing a scene all night finally got the boot…. and actually says the words “I’m being ostracized because I’m a white man” as he’s getting kicked out. Incredible.

1:37 AM: I open J9o from hi-jack and my wife 3-bets me from small blind. I call. We are in $25/$50 Overs now. Flop J95 and she check-raises me (lololololol), I call. My plans to raise the turn are spoiled by an ace and she check-calls. River is a queen and she checks again. This isn’t the greatest runout against her 3-betting range but she did check, so there’s that. I don’t need to squeeze every ounce of value out of my wife, plus there’s some chance I’m beat here, so I check back and I’m good vs KQ.

Leak, leak, leak… 🚰

This after trying to convince the table that she’s up against me lifetime in heads up pots. 😂

1:59 AM: Running super good against Curious George tonight. I open KcQh, Joker 3-bets, George calls from SB, I call. Flop 986 two clubs, George donks, I call, Joker calls. Turn Jc, I call, Joker folds. River 5c, he bets I raise and he calls with7c5x. Yikes.

2:12 AM: Another monster pot my way: raised pre, I have K6dd on T66ss from the blinds and Curious George and Joker help me cap it. I get two more big bets in on turn vs George and dodge his flush draw on river.

I’m honestly having a fantasy session. I’m up ridiculous amounts. I can’t even fathom a guess. I’ll try to take a pic before I cash out.

3:55 AM: Thought my run good might be over when QJ < 95o on JT553 and I got check-called all the way down and slow rolled. And followed that up with AQ vs Curious George’s 66 on A868x for max pain.

But… then I flopped a set of kings in a multiway capped pot and got donked into on flop and river, got raises in on both streets and two callersat showdown.

I don’t normally play this late but I don’t really see how I can leave when the game is this juiced and I’m running so good.

4:16 AM: Lower stakes player just moved into our game because his broke and I wouldn’t try this on someone that actually knows what’s going on but he opens and I 3-bet KQdd and the small blind calls. Flop is 765 and we all check. Turn pairs the 7, the PFR bets, and I call and I’m probably going to call river too because I’ve never played with this guy. Small blind folds. River 9, he bets without thinking. I basically never have a straight here but he doesn’t know that and I’m pretty sure he is weak, so I raise and he snap folds.

5:34 AM: Not really interested in updating at this time, especially since we are 6-handed now. I’m just trying to set records at this point, but this hand is pretty crazy.I open 55, a player calls, Curious George 3-bets button and we both call.Board Q9544 and we cap flop three ways, 3-bets three ways on turn and capped heads up on river vs AA.

6:21 AM: What an epic, surreal session. By far my best win ever in a cash game. I only left because it was 6 AM and I really want to have a productive Tuesday and… also because there was a player in the game that was acting brutally slow and we were playing 6-handed.

Final Score: +$6754

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Friday Frenzy: $15/$30 @ Palace – 2/16/2018 (Live Blog)

February 16, 2018

4:20 PM: Just walked into Palace and immediately got a seat. Timed it perfectly.

I made seeing Black Panther a priority this afternoon (spoiler: it’s really, really good).

Lots of Overs buttons so I’m gonna sit down with $2500 today.

Current lineup: someone involved in Washington state government – I’ll call him The Mayor (because he’s actually been the mayor), $8/$16 reg, Chief Wiggum, Taz, myself, an old reg that attended WSOP with me last year but has been MIA for months and already has a cool nickname: Cobra, the guy that played last week with the 80% VPIP, Dansby Swanson, and Elmer.

Leggo.

4:37 PM: Standard start. Wiggum limps, I raise with 98ss, 80%, Dansby and Elmer call. I triple barrel Ts6s2KA and shake everyone but 80% who shows down K7o.

Sigh.

5:00 PM: More standard shit. I can’t fade K7o after flopping a combo draw but my AA goes up in smoke vs Taz’ 65 on Q9738. Those two hands sum up my last three weeks in a nutshell.

5:08 PM: Some good luck:

I open JTo and Taz calls on button. Three of us see JT4 rainbow flop and Taz is helping me get all the bets in. He’s a little spazzy (hence the name) and capable of overplaying hands, so I’m still leading king turn even though it definitely favors his range. I’m happy to see him just call. River 9 and I can’t bet it anymore. He checks back with AJhh, which turned a Royal Flush draw that’s currently worth $21,000! Solid dodge.

New player opens from mid-position and I defend T5cc heads up because I have two cards and someone dared to raise my blind. Flop is QJ8 with one club and I check-call. Turn is ace of clubs and I’m picking up some live read weakness and my draw is massive, so I check-raise and I do get it through without having to make a hand.

5:54 PM: Get it capped from SB with QQ with Taz and 80% in. Taz, who has one of itchiest trigger fingers among Palace regs somehow finds a check on Q99 and 80% checks back. Groan. I do get Taz to pay off turn and river though.

6:01 PM: Taz is on full blown throwing cards around the table tilt now, which makes that flop check above utterly sickening.

6:33 PM: Lots of movement in my game: Elmer, Cobra, 80%, and Wiggum are all gone. Picked up Game Genie and some other loose players. 8 of 9 player have Overs now and the one without a button is on the tighter side so pretty much a $25/$50 – and we just chopped three hands in a row. Lol.

6:56 PM: QT < KT on QJJxK; A9 < QJ on T9xTJ; K9cc < AT on KQJcTcK; A7cc < 32o on Q22cc8x; AK < QQ button open vs small blind.

Poker is really hard when you’re on the wrong side of a draw 95% of the time.

Down over $600.

7:09 PM: A little reprieve: KK in the small blind and everyone folds to me. We chop. Sigh.

7:41 PM: Button straddles, nit defends big, I 3-bet A3cc and try to torch it off on QJ24 with both players calling down, but, wait, what is this? A five? A fucking five from the heavens?! I bet, they both call. Table is shocked. Not sure if it’s because of my hand and my line or because I showed a winner on the river.

8:05 PM: A little run good. Posted with A5 and turned aces up in a big pot.

Red AA held up in a 3-bet heads up pot on Q92ccc.

Bill W just walked in and he’s 4th on the list and trying to break games to start a $30/$60 game. Can’t say I have a lot of interest in making that happen.

There are currently two full $15/$30 games with nine on the list! 😮😮

8:29 PM: Just whiffed another nut flush draw, but I did river a pair of aces… which was no good.

8:34 PM: Just whiffed another nut flush draw, but I did river a pair of aces… no this is not a typo. Legit next hand! This time my ace was good and I got a $50 Overs value bet in. That hand seems to have upset The Mayor. I love it. I’ve missed 100% of my flush draws for like three sessions and the guy is practically spitting on my cards in disgust when I show them.

8:48 PM: Heater alert: I switched seats and won like 4 of 5 hands, including AA over The Mayor’s KK, a hand that triggered him so bad I thought he was gonzo.

I imagine I am no longer stuck but I’m not sure.

Game Genie just busted… again. It seems like not that long ago that he was walking on water every single session. He no longer possesses the cheat code necessary to beat this game. I’m considering changing his name to Game Over. But honestly, I feel kind of bad for him.

8:52 PM: Wow. I never thought I was going to be able to use this nickname, but Puss-In-Boots just sat in the same game as me. I came up with that name because the dude just refuses to play poker with me. He must be feeling it tonight (I mean he’s properly imbibed).

Another wow: Palace is about to start a third $15/$30 game. Unreal. And that will still leave 6-7 names on the list. SICK!

9:32 PM: I have what I feel is a pretty big announcement for the blog. I’m done coming up with alliterative nicknames for Pesky Pete. He has become a pretty good poker friend of mine, even popping up in Reno and Los Angeles when I’m there. But let’s be honest about something: he’s a nuisance. It’s not like most of my other poker friends that almost never play hands against me – not because we are friends but because they are tight players. Peter is not tight. It seems like he’s in every pot I play, sometimes putting gross beats on me.

Lots of people have wanted to be my arch enemy over the years. Some were good candidates, but most of them didn’t play enough to really qualify.

My good friend Vince sort of self-proclaimed himself my biggest nemesis and it was hard to argue – the dude seemed to hold over me and walk on water for years. Not to take away from his ability – he’s a great player – but he always seemed to get there when we played our biggest pots together. But Vince has all but disappeared from the live poker scene. We take trips together once in a while but we only play cash games when he hosts a home game once every six months or so.

He’s not my rival anymore.

Peter is. He’s ubiquitous. I can’t escape him. He “follows” me around the west coast, he’s always in my game, always in my pots. He’s friendly but devious. He’s a formidable opponent but a borderline maniac. He’s my friend and my biggest pest. He’s always laughing at the table. He’s quite the clown really.

HE’S THE JOKER.

10:54 PM: Extended blog break while I got a massage for 40 minutes. Something weird has been happening. I’m winning most of the pots I’ve been contesting. Like, the hands I’m supposed to win most of the time have been winning. I’m up $1300. Seems like I have less to talk about when crazy things aren’t happening to me constantly.

This game is pretty great. There are four players with VPIPs between 39% – 60%. Unfortunately all four of them have migrated to my direct left, which has made my current pure run all the more miraculous. I just colored up $2000 to green chips to make my upcoming seat change more manageable.

And The Joker is in the building, but with three games going I might not have to protect Gotham so diligently tonight.

11:15 PM: The Joker is in the third $15/$30 game battling it out with my wife, who has self-deprecatingly suggested given herself the blog nickname The Leak. 😂

Fortunately, that nickname has never been less applicable. She’s on one of her hottest stretches since we first started dating in spring 2012. In fact, she’s crushing this year and we’ve even joked that if she has a better 2018 playing poker than I do then I will have to get a job.

11:21: Massive pot with AK. Capped like six ways pre. No one bets Q75dd flop. Turn pairs the 5 and there’s a bet and I’m the only caller somehow. River is king of diamonds and I get bet into again. This is a spot where I think I’m best a lot but raising doesn’t make a ton of sense. I call and she tables 76. Running hot!

11:51 PM: I flopped a pair and a gutshot in a massive pot, turned the nut flush draw, and *gasp* got there!

I just had a hiccup where my AK lost a massive pot to K8 on KQ88x and KQ ran into KK on Q High board – and the player had the class to tell me “good call” when I paid off on river – but I’m still up around $2000 total.

And The Joker is in my game. He’s always in my game.

12:12 AM: The night I declare Peter The Joker, he sits at my table for 11 hands before switching tables.

I’m like “dude…”

He says, “I saw you were winning tonight and that’s exactly what The Joker would do.”

I’m not so sure, but good riddance.

12:20 AM: Every pot is huge. It’s like 5-6 ways for two bets almost every hand. Just whiffed 65cc on Q33cc4 – let’s not start that again.

12:27 AM: Here’s the kind of hand I’ve been losing for weeks. Cutoff and button open limp, I call T7dd, big blind checks. Flop A77 two clubs and I check-raise the button. We are heads up and I bet-call 9c turn. River is a 6 and he checks back… with 75. My kicker plays and I win the pot.

Let’s. Go.

12:40 AM: Defend 95dd vs button open. Check-raise Q75 one diamond flop. He calls. Bet 6d turn and call raise. WHIFF. He checks back with AQ. Come on.

12:43 AM: I have acquired the Jesus seat though. But the four super loose players on my left are now two super loose players on my right – the other two left. I do have the three tightest players on my left now, so that’s nice, but our game has slowed down considerably. I took the seat of the most active player who switched tables and told The Joker there are “too many $40k a year pros” in this game. 😂

(Although +$40k does sound way better than the -$18k pace I’m on so far this year.)

1:18 AM: Someone raises, SB calls and I defend 64hh. Flop A64 and SB folds after PFR bets. I feel like this is a good board texture to check-raise turn, not the flop. That’s what I do on 5 turn, but he 3-bets me. I don’t love that. I call and he checks back 9 river and my two pair beats his A3.

2:44 AM: Quit a while ago but just got home. My goodness, they let me win some pots tonight.

Final score: +$2334

That wipes out my deficit for February. Working on 2018 next.

Don’t let me get in my zone.”0′

Probably no poker tomorrow because, after going to zero UW basketball games in the first 35.5 years of my life, I will be going to my second UW game in two weeks.

It looks like $30/$60 could be a go on Sunday though.

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Friday Fever: $15/$30 @ Palace (Live Blog)

February 9, 2018

11:01 AM: So yesterday I played an 11.5 hour $15/$30 session and thought maybe if I didn’t blog it I would have a chance to book a win! And I was right! I finished at +$509, which is my best $15/$30 session since January 1st! Wow.

And it was a hard-fought small win. I was stuck basically the entire day – even -$1000 at one point – and I was card dead all day. I don’t even know how I did it really.

Last night, I had the K9 of diamonds and triple barreled the T9xddA9 board and rivered The Tick’s AQ, which seems like the first showdown I’ve won against him in four sessions. And you know what happened next? After playing for 10+ hours, this guy didn’t take another hand. Losing one pot to me was more than he could bare.

Palace is about to spread $15/$30 for the fifth day in a row, which is amazing considering I thought this limit was in trouble as recently as Saturday. Now it really looks like it could be an everyday possibility.Starting lineup today, 6-handed: Game Genie, Elmer, Chief Wiggum, a loose non-reg, Atlanta Braves shortstop and leadoff hitter Dansby Swanson, and myself.

First clash feels like every hand of $15/$30 ever for me: I open KK, Elmer cold calls button, big blind defends; flop QJx two spades, I bet, Elmer raises and I 3-bet; he calls 4 turn; I check-call ace river and lose to AQ. Standard!

11:31 AM: Super Dave, the world’s biggest maniac, has made us 7-handed.

11:32: And we’re full: loose $8/$16 reg and an unknown.

11:38 AM: Super Dave just won back-to-back massive pots vs me:

65hh < 53o on 654Q7

QTcc < K7 on K87QK

The two hands that sandwiched that he lost massive pots with ace high.

This guy almost never has a pair. Why me? Why always me?

-$500 😂😂😂

11:51 AM: Super Dave 3, Dark Knight 0:

QQ < 94o on 7439K

This dude has not won a pot against anyone else yet. He’s shown down ace high four times.

Just 3-bet AThh and c-bet J73 flop 3-handed and by river I have worst hand against QT and T9.

Seriously considering discontinuing the blog today – I just run amazingly bad when I’m blogging my sessions. I’m not superstitious but wtf.

-$900 in less than an hour.

12:23 PM: I reloaded $1k already. Super Dave had $1500 after he dusted my queens with 94o. He has less than $300 now. I haven’t won a pot since he sat down. It honestly makes me sick.

12:30 PM: Super Dave has felted all his chips… and all my chips. It’s gotta be some kind of sick joke.

12:32: I open KQcc. I’m the only raiser. 3-handed on KJJJ. I’m in last place. I promise you this shit is real. Big blind has Jx and button has AA.

12:46 PM: Super Dave 4, Dark Knight 1

He pays off my A3 on A535J but outdraws my 99 on the very next hand. No momentum.

12:50 PM: Top top vs AA, but neither of us can beat J7.

This is a total zoo game. Super Dave is at 100% VPIP, 60% PFR after 25 hands; two other players have VPIPs over 60%. The two worst players have felted already and I’m down $1500 somehow.

Game Genie and the unknown player to my right (@ 77% VPIP) have all the chips.

12:58 PM: Another player felts and is replaced by The Tick.

1:14 PM: The three worst players have felted a total of four times. Two have left and been replaced by The Tick and Radio Mike. I am down almost $1600. Super Dave still has about $800 and if he leaves I may actually vomit. The unknown to my right has bumped his VPIP over 80% now.

1:21 PM: I open KQdd UTG, Super Dave 3-bets and The Tick can’t fold JTo and of course he gets the KQ9 flop. I’m in $4000 already and probably down $2000.

And…. Super Dave cashed out.

Someone kill me.

I’m experimenting with a new app which is how I can mention stats. Super Dave finished with a 100% VPIP and 69% PFR over 41 hands.

1:32 PM: Finally caught a miracle: AJ (ace of hearts) on KQ8hhT4 capped on flop… I bet and three bet on flop and I can’t get Radio Mike out with the same hand (no hearts) so I have to split this massive pot with him. No joy. I find no joy in winning half of this pot.

Dansby Swanson chimes in with “you guys were so crushed on the flop” and I’m taking a walk outside because I snapped back “no shit, man. We had ace high.”

1:42 PM: New goal for the day: not to react to anything.

2:10 PM: Goal failed already. Dansby opens, I 3-bet TT, two others in; board runs out T986J and I lose to Dansby’s AQ.

2:19PM: the unknown on my right with the 80%+ VPIP had over $1500 and now has less than $100. So… to recap: four different players have felted or dusted off big stacks (not including me) and I’m somehow stuck almost $2k with that much overlay. It almost seems impossible.

3:15 PM: Just went runner runner flush with AKdd vs AQ on QTxd7d2d and got told “nice catch” because, you know, I’m running so pure.

3:30 PM: So pure. I open AK, Dansby check-raises me in Overs on AJ3, I call, bet turn, he donks 7 river. NH A7.

3:46 PM: T2cc just raised button after limper and capped after I 3-bet AQ from big blind. Obviously can’t beat that hand.

3:54 PM: Player I’ve tracked last two days at 43 VPIP 4 PFR (over 500+ hands) just opened and I 3-bet QQ. Three on us to T75 two diamonds and she check-raises and caps. I think I’m dead already. I call down and through some miracle from the heavens she is torching with KT offsuit for some reason.

4:11 PM: Another miracle: the torcher with the 80% VPIP (and T2cc capper) raised limpers on button, I 3-bet AQ again, he caps again. Flop KT3, I check-raise the other two players out and he calls. I brick turn, bet, and… he folds! 🙌🏻

Chief Wiggum is eating something that smells rancid and I ask him about it and he starts saying how good it is. I say “it smells good” and he starts telling me about it and I say “let Radio Mike smell it” and he immediately grabs his plate to and brings it to Mike’s face, unaware of Mike’s pet peeve with other people’s food.

That was amusing enough to give me a second wind!

4:56 PM: Huge pot. I have A7ss on 532ss7 and lose to Radio Mike’s 62 when we both river straights. Would have got me to less than $1000 stuck but now I’m sitting here wondering how I can smash the board when I really need a big pot and lose to bottom pair.

5:05 PM: Just made quad jacks and got paid off on all streets and I’m up for top High Hand but I have to fade 18+ minutes.

5:26 PM: My High Hand held! Don’t call it a comeback! Seriously. Don’t.

Radio Mike opens, I defend JJ. Flop QJT. I check-raise, he calls. King on turn. He has AT. No waiting. No board pair. He checks back river for some reason.

5:40 PM: Actually the comeback is on. I’m down less than $1k now which feels like winning at this point.

5:47 PM: Four limps in front of me, I limp 96o, 7 of us see T96cc flop. Tick leads, two call, I raise, two cold call, and six of us to 3d turn. Tick donks again, one call, I raise, Taz cold calls again, and four of us to ace river. Tick donks again. I feel like I’m losing now, especially with his extensive history of rivering me lately. I call though and he tables JT!

He’s heating up! Down less than $600 now.

6:37 PM: And slipping back down. AK whiff, AQ whiff, JJ < AQ.

7:05 PM: My wife just put her name up for $15/$30 which means she must think they will start a second game – and they might be able to…

7:16 PM: Welp. They started a second game and the only thing keeping me in this current game was the 80% VPIP on my right… and then he cashed out!

And was replaced by The Human Torch! He sits down with $500.

But yes. Palace has two $15/$30 games going.

7:36 PM: And now my wife is in the same game as me. 🤦🏻‍♂️

7:41 PM: A couple good things happened. I raised AThh on a 972 flop trying to pick up outs with an obvious AK or AQ out and went runner runner flush instead and got a raise in on the river. Then I flopped a set of fives heads up against the big blind and dodged A7dd on 653dd.

Also, The Torch went through that $500 in less than ten minutes… and was replaced by my wife. So my close call decision to switch tables is now a no-brainer.

8:49 PM: I’m finding it rather difficult to track everyone’s stats and blog at the same time… I’ve been playing a lot of hands. I’m running at 35/20 over 300+ hands because the players on my right have been so loose and passive.

I just limped along with K8dd and turned a flush against T9o on TT7ddQd.

Still waiting on my table change but two players with VPIP of 50%+ have Overs here. However, the other game is significantly better. 🤷🏻‍♂️

8:56 PM: My wife just put her “I mean fucking business hat” on… which she wasn’t wearing when she check-raised me on the turn heads up twenty minutes ago. 🤔

9:02 PM: Going bad again. Both 50% VPIPs just torched me for big pots. One makes a one card flush with JTo on the river and I just ran QQ into AA against the other player on AQ66J and lost basically all the bets and now I’m walking around outside in disbelief.

But the bad thing about walking around outside is that the smokers all feel it’s appropriate to ask “how’s it going in there?” – a question I don’t like answering when things are going great, let alone when I’m getting my teeth kicked in.

I think I got up to as much as -$550 but I’m probably back to -$1500ish.

When did this game become so hard?

9:16 PM: That was a pretty long break I just took, but how comical is this? The player that filleted me with those aces is… gone. Of course he is.

9:25 PM: Special player in the game. Basically always sits with near min-buy and always wants an Overs button. I have been playing here since late 2014 and I’ve legit never seen him cash out one chip.

9:42 PM: OMG so many crazy hands. I can’t type them fast enough.

One hand: I flop top top with AK against The Tick’s ace plus nut flush draw and he 3-bets flop and never stops betting, which is a line he’s always had me beat with (when he’s sober), so winning that pot was a nice surprise.

I also raised the turn heads up in Overs with KJdd on T98dd8 and didn’t miss. 😮😮

10:03 PM: Finally got my table change. New table has The Hit&Run King, Taz, and a bunch of crazies.

Now that I’m here everyone is going to abandon ship. That’s how it goes. I don’t think they know how much I’m bleeding lately.

10:13 PM: First pot at new table. I raise A8hh utg, Taz cold calls button, both blinds call. I double barrel 985dh2d and check-call 3d river and lose to Taz’s K7 of diamonds.

Just turned quads with AQ though and I’m up for High Hand again.

10:19 PM: Jesus. The blinds at my table just ran it for high hand and the small blind flopped a straight flush to notch me with four minutes left. I wish I could take a picture so you could believe this shit I’m telling you. Paying $6 to run it for a $250 High Hand and it costs me $150.

I did get another $90 in High Hands though, so that’s something.

11:11 PM: Player posts in the cutoff and checks, I raise 54cc on button and we are heads up. I turn a flush which is cool. He has A3cc though, which is standard.

11:30 PM: Nothing is easy today. Crazy opens, there’s a call, I 3-bet KQhh and get the QQ7cc flop and then get check-raised on Jc turn which is kind of gross but then the 9c river bet makes it really painful. Fortunately he is punting with two red 8s and I pick it off.

12:02 AM: The poker gods just rewarded me for all the pain I’ve endured today. Button straddles, SB 3-bets, I call with 44 from big blind, and four of us see the 654ss flop. It goes two bets on flop and then the PFR donks ten turn, I raise and the button 3-bets, SB calls and I cap it even though I’m not sure I’m good here. River: 4. We get three bets in again three ways and, yes folks, it’s a one-outer against the button’s 55. Also good for another second place High Hand.

Button is berating me after the hand saying “aren’t you supposed to be a professional? You’re sloppy as fuck.”

😂😂😂

I mean… it’s hard to feel bad for the guy when he’s being a dick about it, but let’s be real: I haven’t taken a beat that bad today!

12:55 AM: Got to my happy place: 6-handed poker, no chopping, which is past everyone else’s pain threshold. Two players leave for $8/$16, one has been sitting out indefinitely, one goes out to smoke, and another says he’ll only play 4-handed if we straddle every hand. I’m not saying no to that… but I am now sitting here first up on the list instead of playing poker because people think short-handed is “bad.” So frustrating.

1:06 AM: Yup. That’s a session. Cashing out almost $3000 so I’m getting the awesome comments of “nice job” and “how do you win every day?” These people obviously don’t read my blog.

Final score: -$1117

I will not be blogging my session tomorrow, dammit. Guaranteed winner!

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Marathon Monday – 2/5/2017

February 5, 2018

11:20 AM: I’m starting to wonder about the viability of a daily $15/$30 game at Palace. If the game can’t start on a Saturday with $500 High Hands every 20 minutes and five $8/$16 games running at one point, things don’t bode very well.

I think the biggest problem is getting the game off the ground. It’s a Palace mentality that short-handed games are “bad.” The players that embrace the short game are few and far between, so when there are 5-6 names on the list it’s like pulling teeth to get a game started unless the right people are on the list. But if you get the game going, other people will join – people that weren’t on the list – and it will fill up. I don’t know why people don’t get this concept.

Bravo showed 11 names on the $15/$30 list for today, but when I showed up I quickly realized that most of the names were carryovers from the Saturday game that never started. That left a total of four names and one of them quickly removed themselves from the list.

So I’m playing $8/$16 instead now and there is a list of four for $15/$30.

In my $8/$16 game are Elmer, Radio Mike, and Game Genie – the same names on the $15/$30 list.

11:52AM: With that said, one player walked in for $15/$30 and we immediately fired it up. Hopefully others will join.

Starting lineup: myself, Radio Mike, Elmer, Game Genie and… a new blog nickname: Marlo… named after the character from The Wire because the resemblance is uncanny. Marlo is sitting with the minimum buy in of $150 but he can fire off for much more and he’s never hurt a poker game he’s sat in.

12:05 PM: Marlo torched his stack and gave me all the bets on JT952 when I had JT and he had J2 (he was all in for two bets on the turn). As an added bonus, Elmer called all the way down. Just as I promised Marlo reloaded for $700.

12:16 PM: We are 7-handed now, joined by a $15/$30 reg and a newer Palace reg that I played with for the first time last week and he immediately established himself as one of the few players I genuinely dislike. He played super slow, which was annoying enough, but he was also verbally aggressive and basically attacked Peaceful Pete and myself, insinuating that we are each other’s “girlfriends.” Eh. I don’t care what anyone says about me or how they act – please just let them keep playing – but unlike Peter, who laughed at everything this idiot said and really kept him in his “happy zone,” I don’t pretend to like people I can’t stand. I’ve only played with this guy twice now, so I’m not gonna drop a name on him yet, but my genuine enemies need to be easily identifiable.

Game Genie opens button, I 3-bet A3hh from the SB, and we are heads up to A86 two clubs one heart. We both check. Non-standard line from me but Game Genie is bluffy. Turn is a jack and it goes bet and call. River is a ten and I go passive again, check-calling, and lose to Q9cc.

I open AK and my new enemy defends and beats me with Q6 on 764AQ.

I open KTdd and Marlo eventually gets all in against me on T84c4c and his J9cc rivers a straight.

My good start has quickly become a mediocre one.

1:08 PM: Sick, lucky connection: Game Genie raises two limpers on the button, I 3-bet KK from SB, one limper stays and three of us see K55 flop. I get three bets in on flop against Game Genie, one bet on 9 turn, and three big bets on 8 river. He has 85hh.

1:16 PM: That last hand gives me a rare big start. I want to rededicate myself to taking breaks and really focusing at the table today. As fun as it is to play with Radio Mike, Elmer, and Prattling Pete it really creates a home game vibe sometimes and takes me out of my element. I’m here to kill and pay our bills, not have a good time with friends. And it also makes it really hard to listen to all the new music that is always coming out and I really enjoy doing that and there’s no better place to do so than at a poker table.

We are full now, picking up a Fortune $20/$40 reg I will call Grawp (that’s a Harry Potter reference and a pretty obscure relation to this player, but I get it and that’s all that matters!) and a Palace reg.

1:42 PM: Game Genie vowed to get his chips back from me and that’s something worth keeping in mind. For instance: four limps in front of me, I limp along with 97o on the button. Flop is 653 with two hearts and it checks to me. I bet and one blind and Game Genie check-call. Turn is a black king and Game Genie leads out. This is definitely a spot I should consider raising. He doesn’t have to have a hand here and I have decent equity even when he calls. I call though, brick river and let him have the pleasure of showing me the ten high he “bluffed” me out with.

1:59 PM: Phone-In Pete is up as a call in for $8/$16 and $6/$12 Omaha, but not for $15/$30. Seems like an oversight on the floors’ part, so I asked Radio Mike if we should mention something to them and we both agreed we can’t assume that Peter wants to play $15/$30. He might have had a terrible weekend or maybe he thinks the lineup is too tough today? We will let him sort it out when he gets here.

2:41 PM: FALSE ALARM: Perfidious Pete is not here. I repeat: PETER IS NOT HERE. Must have been a different Peter. It all makes sense now.

2:46 PM: Radio Mike opens and I defend with 98o. Flop is K65 all diamonds and I check-raise (one of my cards is a diamond). He calls. Turn pairs the king and I bet and he folds. About a minute goes by and he gives me a look and I give him a wink, knowing he’s going to read this in the next ten minutes or so.

Maybe I had a king, Mike. Maybe I had what I said I had.

3:31 PM: a limp or two in front of me, I raise TT, Grawp calls from SB, five of us to 853ss flop. Elmer donks, I raise, Grawp cold calls, Elmer calls. Turn K. Grawp check-raises. I’m calling down here out of curiosity. Ace of spades on the river gets me a free showdown and he shows KQo. Okay.

3:52 PM: Can’t say I’m running bad though. Game Genie limps UTG, I raise KTdd, button 3-bets, Elmer caps, Genie folds and it’s three of us to T33, two hearts one diamond. Elmer leads and he basically always has overpair here so no point in raising. I call and we are heads up. 4d on turn and I still just call. Elmer is the type that will call a raise here and still bet the river so no guarantee I get a free showdown when I miss and there is literally zero chance I have the best hand. River solves all problems by giving me a flush and I outdraw his KK.

And then I win a big pot with KK three hands later. 🤷🏻‍♂️

4:18 PM: I open QQ and Radio Mike 3-bets. I call and check-call down on KJ965 and lose to his AK.

One player limps and it folds to my big blind. I check with Q4o and check again on QT6. Turn is a 4 and I get my patented big bet check-raise in in a micropot. He calls and the river is a 3 and now he’s raising me? I call and he has the 75 somehow.

Same player cold calls a raise on Q82 and beats my AA with Q4.

Maybe I’m not running so hot?

4:34 PM: I’m changing Grawp’s nickname because I just remembered something: Sgt. Rock has a blog (link later: Sgt Rock’s Blog) he updates occasionally and already has a great nickname for this player. He calls him Atlanta Braves leadoff hitter and shortstop and I always laugh when I read that. I don’t want to type all that out though every time I mention him so I will call him by current Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson’s name.

4:44 PM: I just opened button with K7o and called down on TT596 vs J8 because I’m a total sicko. Not the greatest bluff catcher but this was more of an informational call down because he took a strange line (check-call flop, bet turn and river).

5:00 PM: Punctual Pete just walked in the door at 5 PM sharp and not ONE SECOND earlier and this bastard immediately gets a seat in the game.

5:48 PM: My enemy in MP opens, Elmer calls, I 3-bet JJ from SB, enemy caps. Flop J74 two spades and I lead out expecting to get good action. Enemy calls and Elmer folds. 2 on turn and I’m fully expecting to get raised, so why not bet? He does raise, I 3-bet and he calls down with whatever overpair he had. He did the whole dramatic “look how unlucky I got” slow fold thing and showed his hand but I lost interest in the situation after about ten seconds and never saw it.

7:48 PM: I was just taking a break to eat some Banh Xeo and it was amazing! While doing so, Radio Mike walked up to me and said “nice live blog – it’s been two hours!”

I guess I haven’t played any exciting pots in a while. So here’s a recent one: I open cutoff with KQcc, button calls, Blackjack calls, and Game Genie goes all in for 3-bets, and I cap. Flop is A4A one club and I c-bet and both live players call. Turn is 3c and I barrel and I shake the button but Blackjack is hanging in there. I whiff river and give up and Blackjack gets it all with 99.

7:50 PM: Here’s a better hand: two limps, Peter completes, I check 43o. Flop is 665, I bet and everyone calls. Turn 7, I bet and my enemy raises me from UTG, fold fold, I 3-bet, and he caps. River 8, I check-call and he shows… 44. 🤦🏻‍♂️

Nope. Didn’t want to catch that punt attempt.

8:01 PM: Open 99 UTG, Blackjack and Dansby Swanson cold call. Three of us to KT9 flop. I bet, Blackjack raises, Dansby does some more cold calling, I 3-bet and they both call. Turn 3, I bet and only BJ calls. River jack and I go thin and get raised. He shows QThh. Blah.

I open button with 33 and only Blackjack defends. He check-calls on 964. We both check on 4 turn. His run good against me continues with a 6 on the river, but he miraculously check-folds, even though my line is laughably unbelievable.

8:23 PM: More pain: I open JJ, my enemy cold calls, big blind defends. Flop is KJ3 two hearts. I bet and the big blind check-raises, I 3-bet, my enemy is still in and big blind calls. Turn is an 8 and now this torcher raises me, the big blind folds, and I punish him with a 3-bet. He calls and raises me on the 2h river. I call and he has 87hh for a flush. Raises me on the turn against a super strong line because he hasn’t paid enough for this draw already, I guess.

This is the kind of torching he was doing on Friday and giving all his chips to Peter, but when I played against him he had a hand. Tonight he’s trying to give me money and the river won’t let him. 🤢

8:47 PM: I hate him. I can’t stand this dude. I can’t explain it all and I don’t want to type out all the offensive things he does, but he needs a nickname. I wanted to use this on someone else earlier but it’s more fitting here. He’s big, he might have roid rage, he’s kind of an idiot, and he annoys the shit out of me. He’s The Tick.

Here’s a crazy, weird hand: multiple limpers, I limp along with 64ss on the button, and 6 of us see a Q97 flop. Everybody checks. Turn is a 6 and a middle player bets, I call, although folding here is perfectly reasonable. We are heads up to king on river and he bets again. He’s a new player to this limit and I know he has a lot of respect for my game so I think a raise here works a large percentage of the time. I pop it and… he calls. I table my hand and he promptly turns up… T5 of diamonds… which is ten high. And then he’s wondering why the pot is being pushed to me. Solid soul read, Dark Knight.

10:06 PM: Multiple limps in front of me, I raise ATss, five or six of us to 952 and it checks around. Turn is a ten and it checks to me, I bet, The Tick raises (after checking back button on flop), Blackjack cold calls, Persistent Peter cold calls, huh? There is a heart draw available, but what the heck? I 3-bet it because none of these clowns have me beat and everyone calls. River is a 7 and I check because this might be a little thin for value as it seemed everyone was drawing, but The Tick bets and Blackjack check-raises. Sigh. Peter mucks, I muck, and The Tick pays it off with ATcc. Blackjack has J8 for the nuts.

10:20 PM: Radio Mike gave me unlimited action on T22Q6 when I had KK and he had whatever crap hand he can cap the flop and call down with. That sent him outside with a tear coming down his eye and when he came back in, he tripped over the front rug, and I guess that made up his mind that he was incapable of continuing a poker session and he came back to the table with wet tissue and some empty racks.

11:10 PM: I open KQ and only Peter defends. Somehow I lose to A6dd on QJ5d flop. 🤷🏻‍♂️

11:26 PM: The Tick has reached the boiling point. He’s had enough alcohol now that he has elevated to Mega-Douche levels and anything anyone says from now on could cause a confrontation.

12:51 AM: Well I’m not leaving anytime soon. We are 8-handed and everyone has Overs buttons now. My A6 just lost to The Tick’s 64 on 76578, which is whatever, but it would be nice to have the best hand on the river against this tool once in a while.

12:54 AM: Peeved Pete just dropped the “F-Bomb” on the table for acting out of turn on the river.

1:01 AM: Jesus. Tick limps utg, SB calls, I check K8. Flop KT8, it checks around. Turn ace, I check-raise The Tick. He calls. Jack on river. I check-call. He has AQ. Every time? Really?

1:29 AM: Everyone gets to river me. A girl that’s been playing really snug all night opens from MP, button calls, I defend TT. I donk 876 flop and she raises me. I call and we are heads up. We both check on ace turn, which I was planning to check-raise if she bet. River is a ten. I bet, she raises… I really think she would bet 99 on the turn, so I’m perplexed. Whatever. I call. She has Q9 suited.

Groan. My Palace red chip curse continues. I haven’t been stuck ALL day and it’s getting close now. I could be up over $2k right now so easy. If I was just running decent.

1:52 AM: Capped pre with AQss 4-ways. Flop KTx with two spades. Capped again. T on turn. Peter has TT. Somehow I don’t get there on the river.

I am stuck now. I am fucking stuck.

Unreal.

2:01 AM: I am 15 hours deep and I’m stuck for the first time all day. It seems like I’ve been getting rivered for about four hours straight now. I’m fed up. But everyone has Overs and The Tick has almost $1500.It’s a toss up.

2:14 AM: Peter just played a 10 minute heads up hand against The Tick (probably only a slight exaggeration) and got like five extra bets with QQ, a hand that should never be good considering the board and the action, but of course he’s good. The snail-pace of the game honestly might drive me out of here.

3:00 AM: Folds to The Tick on the button and the big blind is begging for a chop. He gets it. I have AQ in the small blind. Thanks man.

Another whiffed nut flush draw.

Everyone is punting to Peter.

Maybe I did go home. Maybe I’m asleep and this is a nightmare I’m having.

3:11 AM: 6-handed no chopping now. The chances this game lasts long enough for me to gut this clown is probably somewhere around zero.

3:22 AM: Zero fucking percent. Game over. What a catastrophe. Finish -$535 after being up at least $1400 at my peak. These $15/$30 sessions have been criminal. This is the second straight session The Tick has sprayed chips to everybody at the table and still managed to cash out multiple racks because he can’t lose to me no matter how hard he tries to.

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The Biggest Disaster of my Poker Career

January 29, 2018

But first, a poker tournament! It’s my favorite event: H.O.R.S.E.! Another $350 buy in so 10K stacks, 30 minute levels, and similar blind levels as everything else I’ve played so far. These are 8-handed tables again but my table starts with five of us. I recognize one of four opponents. He’s an older, respected local reg named Cyrus. I don’t know his last name so I couldn’t look up his stats but I’ve mostly seen him play tight-solid. Another player accidentally registers this tournament thinking it was no limit hold’em. The players try to give him an out but he’s ready to play even though he claims to have never played any of the Stud games (a claim we will soon discover has to be true).

Rather than list the blinds or betting limits, I’m just going to list the level when typing out hands to avoid confusion.

Notable Hands L1-L4

L1, first hand of tournament, LHE. One player limps, I have QTss in the small blind and decide to just call, an atypical line for me. Three of us see the 9s8s2 flop, I bet and get raised on the 6 turn and then check-fold when I miss everything on the river. A wonderful start to my event. It’s almost like yesterday never ended!

Punctual Pete sits down at the tail end of level one and we swap 10%, hoping one of us can find the magic touch sometime this trip.

So yeah, that guy wasn’t lying. He’s clueless in Razz. He calls raises with queens and jacks up and makes some really bizarre plays on later streets.

L2 Stud, a couple limps in front of me and I come along with KT-J looking to play pots against the noob. There is a queen dead but all my other useful cards are live. Cyrus pairs his bring in card on 4th, I catch a 3, and one of the limpers catches a second heart, but everybody checks. On 5th I pair my king, Cyrus catches a blank, and the player on my right catches a third open heart and bets. I find it hard to believe this player wouldn’t bet a four flush on 4th so I raise and get it heads up when he calls. He bricks 6th, I catch an ace and bet. He calls. I river aces up, value bet it and win showdown.

L3, Stud 8, I scoop with 2Qs-As4s4A-8, a pretty marginal starter but as I said I’m looking to play anything reasonable when the noob comes into the pot. Pretty good run out for me and no one made a low.

L3, Stud 8, crazy hand. I defend with 32-3 and immediately make two pair, but the opener pairs his queen. The noob is in with xx-5J and I decide to call on 4th even though it’s pretty suspect. The other two players brick on 5th and I catch a king (all live) and I think kings up will be good if I make it so I continue. The noob makes open fives on 6th and the other two of us catch total bricks. In fact, the other guy catches a 3 and the noob caught a 2 on 6th so I’m prepared to fold to a bet here but it checks around and… I catch the case 2! The noob leads on 7th and since my board looks like this xx-32K8-x I can’t imagine the other player will fold queens up if I raise, so I raise and only the noob calls and I scoop.

L3, LHE. Cyrus makes me rethink my image of him. I open UTG with TT and he calls on the button. Flop is 653 and he raises me. I’m not exactly sure what his range is here but I think it’s very pocket pair heavy. I don’t expect him to play hands like QJs or KQ this way and I don’t expect him to have hands like 87s here. I think I’m doing okay against his range but since I think I’m crushed or crushing most of the time, I decide to just call down and sell a hand like ace high. The board runs out 65369 and I check-call turn and river and let him own himself with 22.

L4, LHE. The noob opens UTG, I 3-bet with 88 from MP, and the small blind caps. Oh oh. We both call and my run good continues when the flop comes K86 rainbow. SB leads, noob raises, and I 3-bet, hoping SB has an AK or AA he can’t fold. But it’s QQ and he tosses it and the noob pays me off all the way.

After that hand I’m near my peak for the whole series around 27k or so.

L4, Omaha 8. Noob limps, I call 7664 from SB and three of us see the Q54 one club flop. I make a suspect lead and only the noob calls. Turn is pretty good: 3 of clubs. So I have the nut straight, a straight flush draw, and a bad low against a player that certainly might not have a low. I bet and he raises me. Well, I guess I call down now. River pairs the queen and I check-call and he shows… *are you ready for this*… T722 with no clubs. Try to digest that one. I’ve had 24 hours to think about it and I still can’t process it. And the sickest part? His ridiculous 72 low is exactly one notch better than my 76 and I’m forced to split the pot with this maniac. Yes, he’s been upgraded from mixed games noob to certified maniac.

L4, Omaha 8. My first real hiccup and it’s no surprise who my opponent is. One player limps and I limp along with Ac2cQ9. It’s three of us to the 995 two heart flop and the first limper bets. Since I have the backdoor nut low draw I just flat, hoping to keep the maniac in. He does call. Turn is an 8 and they both check-call. River is a jack and they both check-call me again. I have a bad feeling about it because I expect the loose player to show up with 87xx hands a lot and he does table J876, a hand I wouldn’t expect this guy to lay down on the flop for a raise. Oh well.

First Break: Dark Knight 23.4K, Peter 13.5K

Notable Hands L5-L7

2017 8-Game WSOP bracelet winner Ron Ware joins my table on his second bullet.

L5, Razz. Maniac opens with a 6 up and it folds to me. I defend with 53-Q. He catches a K, I catch a T and bet. He calls. He catches another K, I pair my 5, bet and he folds.

L5, Stud. I complete with J9-K. The highest up card behind me is an 8 and there are three of them! This is an obvious steal spot… with one problem: the maniac is the bring in. I’m in the spot I’ve wanted to avoid and find myself barreling with J9-K876 while he catches nothing but rags and keeps calling. Fortunately he finally finds a fold on 6th and I don’t have to torch a bet on 7th without looking.

Another superstar on his second bullet: three time WSOP bracelet winner and 2004 WSOP Player of the Year Jeff Madsen. Jeff has $5.27 million in career earnings, good enough for 117th on the all-time money list and he’s younger than me!

L6, Stud 8. A king up completes, I 3-bet A5-4, the bring in has a 3 up and caps it, and the king folds. On 4th he catches a jack and I catch an 8 and he check-calls. On 5th he catches a 2 and I catch a 7 and he check-calls again. On 6th, he makes open jacks and I pair my 4 and he bets into me. I’m tempted to raise here because I have a made low and a pair and it appears that he has either two pair or jacks with a low draw. I decide on call and he bets 7th dark. I catch a 3 to improve my low to 7543A but I can only win half so I just call and he catches perfect on 7th and makes A5-3J2J-6 to scoop me.

Unreal. Just bets dark and gets there, like nothing bad can happen on 7th street for him. I’m standing in line at Disneyland typing this but I’d be curious running an odds calculator and seeing how often we each scoop on river.

Some relatively funny Jeff Madsen notes. Bring in is 200 and level is 500/1000 and he tosses two 500s out as the bring in, making it obvious he is completing to 500, but no one – dealer included – is getting it. Dealer is trying to make it a 200 bet and it takes way too long for the situation to get corrected. A few hands later, he’s the bring in again and puts out a 500 chip without saying anything – a clear bet of 200 – and now the dealer is trying to make it 500! Finally he makes it to showdown in a Stud 8 hand and announces “aces and a 6” and his opponent thinks he is announcing “aces and sixes” and that his low is good for half and receives a mini-slow roll. At this point I feel it’s fair to ask this man, with over $5 million in lifetime cashes, if this is his first tournament.

Jeff wasn’t a very gracious loser but he definitely had an A+ sense of humor.

L7, LHE. Maniac opens, I 3-bet AQ and one of the blinds caps it, almost all in. We both call and then call his remaining chips and check down on the J9897 run out. The blind has KQ and the maniac has 33. This is a pretty critical pot and the end result makes me wonder if I played it optimally. I don’t necessarily care about eliminating players at this point, but I don’t really see how I can justify raising or betting my hand on this board texture in a dry side pot. Plus, I don’t know that this player is capable of folding 33 here anyway.

Second Break: Dark Knight 16.3K, Peter 7K

I thought that Stud 8 hand where dude bet dark and scooped me was pretty bad but Peeved Pete has a much better story to tell me on break.

Last hand of O8 Peter has A2TT with a suited ace in diamonds. Peter opens, button calls, small blind goes all in. The board runs out JT3d4dJd and Peter bets the whole way. He’s made tens full of jacks (and the nut flush) and scoops the side pot. The small blind flashes two fours and mucks his hand but since he was all in the dealer makes him show his whole hand and… he has a dangling jack for… jacks full of fours and scoops the main pot. Unreal!

Notable Hands L8-L11

L8, a Razz hand where we kind of lose our minds. Jeff Madsen completes with a queen up and I’m next with 65-J. There’s a 5 and 9 up left to act. I go into the tank and eventually call but I think I should have raised. I was getting a fold tell from the 5 and obvious disinterest from the 9, so I figured it would be heads up anyway. Wrong. The 5 up 3-bets, the 9 folds, and the bring in calls three bets with a king! Jeff apologizes to me for costing us both an extra 800. Then we both catch paint on 4th street and exit stage right.

I get two more playable Razz hands and continue to catch paint while my opponents improve. Then I get the bring in twice in a row and just like that I’m below starting stack.

L8, Stud. I open 6h2h-Jh and I get two customers, including the maniac. I brick hard on 4th, catching a black 4 and one of my opponents catches a suited card with his Qs. We all check to 7th street and my board runs out 6h2h-Jh456-2. I never catch any additional hearts and on 7th one of my opponents bets. His board was scary enough to bet and win the pot as early as 4th street and even though he’s caught some good scare cards, all he’s done is check. I decide to pay him off and he shows me queens and sevens with a board that probably developed like this: 77-Qs9sXTs-Q. How he didn’t bet this board earlier, I don’t know.

Third Break: Dark Knight 6700, Peter 7k

I start L9 with 6 bigs.

Stud 8, I go with AQ-5 two spades. The maniac is in and one other opponent:

Me: AQ-5KAx-9

Maniac: xx-3KTx-dead

V2: has four low cards and four diamonds on 6th and catches an offsuit ace for the low.

I’m up to 8400.

I see Peter walking around shaking his head in disbelief. He’s out.

L10, LHE. UTG is all in for 1800 @ 600/1200, four players call, I call with KTcc in the small blind and the big comes along. The flop is 886 with one club and I check-call the maniac and three live players see the turn. These are precious chips but this pot is massive. Good news: I spike a ten, lead out, both live players fold and I hold against the all in’s A3 and find myself with over 20k again.

I split an O8 pot with Jeff Madsen where we both limped along from late position. I have 6532dd on A63d9d6 for a full house and the second nut low but Jeff has the 8542 for half.

L10, brutal O8 hand. UTG limps and I raise in LP with AQ52, suited ace. Flop comes 665 rainbow and UTG check-raises me. I call. Turn is a queen and I resist the urge to raise. River is a 7 and again I resist the urge. I felt like this player had a 6 and I didn’t see much profit in raising. He did have a 6 – an A642 to be exact and I got quartered.

L11, Razz. I start this hand with enough to raise third and bet every street until I was all in on 7th. Here’s how the boards developed:

Me: J3-6928-3

Villain: xx-7992-x

I thought this hand was over on 5th. It looked like I probably had a 96 made and he was still drawing… to a 97! I guess once he makes the 97 on 6th he’s never folding but I only pretended to look at my card on 7th and I had over 90% of my stack in already. There were about 35 left at this point and I was super frustrated with myself for torching my stack starting a Razz hand with a jack. I think it’s fine and I should have gotten it through on 5th, but I also could just have easily folded and not even play the pot. Instead, I was busted and too annoyed to play cash games, so I called it a night.

The next day my plan was to play $400 max buy PLO with $1/$2 blinds until the T.O.E. tournament at 5 PM. That got off to a great start. I 3-bet AKK3 double suited to $65 and two players called. Flop was Q42 rainbow and that was good enough for me to commit. I got it all in against KQJJ and found a way to get stacked when he turned a queen.

I did get some back when I got all in three ways on 763 rainbow vs 54xx and a wrap and rivered a boat, but I still finished the session at -$272.

I did a $100 last longer bet for the T.O.E. with Peter, Jesus, and Mr. Sandman. I didn’t take notes for this, but I busted far from the money. Jesus won the last longer and the entire tournament for over $7K and a Remington trophy. Congrats man!

I was already having a miserable trip, but it was about to get worse. These guys were telling me that I absolutely need to be playing in the $40/$80. The argument is that it makes no sense to play $30/$60 against mostly competent players and not play $40/$80 against idiots. I don’t disagree with that logic and I really want to play but I’m also a bankroll nit and I can’t pretend like I’m properly rolled for $40/$80 as a full time player.

But I can take a shot! I decided to sit down with $4k and gave myself a stop-loss of $2000 – and then I hit that mark (and then some) in less than two hours. I was pretty devastated. I don’t do stop-losses but I also never take shots. It just seems terrible to lose a couple racks and give up. It happens all the time at my normal stakes. But I stuck to my plan and quit after I was down $2000, a decision made easier because I was steaming out of my mind. I won the first pot I played and that was the last significant pot I won. And then when I was already down about $1500 the dealer said one of my cards was exposed (and not one person was looking at anything besides their phones) and made me turn in an ace. I got KJ of clubs instead and lost a decent pot I would have won with the ace that nobody saw. Super annoying. I didn’t even know what my “exposed” card was when I was protesting, it just seemed stupid to replace a card that only the dealer saw and, of course, it cost me a pot when I needed one badly.

Instead, I ended up cashing out with my third biggest single session loss of all-time, a solid exclamation point to an already ugly trip. I didn’t feel like playing the next day and went to Disneyland instead.

Final LAPC trip stats:

Tournaments: -$2200 (0-6)

Cash Games: -$1834

Overall: -$4034

And this is what my January graph looks like now:

Note: I’m down $4700 for January, which would be my all-time worst month if it ended after my trip. Not sure why the graph tails off well past -$6k. It’s bad, but not quite that bad! (Edit: I just realized why it looks that way. I was in a pending $15/$30 session for $2000).

I took 2nd in the PLO-Medium tournament in the Grizzly Games on Global Poker last night for +$634 and that’s not included in the above graph. And perhaps I had worse months when I was still drinking, but as far as I’m concerned my poker career didn’t start until I quit drinking.

h1

Marathon Monday: $15/$30 @ Palace (1/22/18)

January 22, 2018

11:13 PM: I was thinking about not blogging today, but why not! I was debating playing some of the Grizzly Games tournaments on Global Poker while I played live today, but they are running 4-max NL tourneys and that is definitely NOT what I want to do while I’m playing live poker.

A little late start for $15/$30 today even though there were 14 names on the list, but we are full now and cards are in the air.

Starting lineup today (s1 to s9): Radio Mike, Elmer (a palace reg long overdue for a name… he’s rather sticky, not quite Super Glue but definitely a regular Elmers), Chief Wiggum, me, older reg, Muffin, Game Genie, and two splashy $8/$16 regs.

This game is actually pretty good, but it’s gotten off to a slow start over the first few orbits. A decent amount of chops, a couple turns, and I don’t think there’s been a showdown yet.

11:27 AM: A little donation on my part in the interest of spicing up the game a little: I open JTss (normal), s5 3-bets and I call heads up. Flop is 854 with two clubs and one spade. I check-call and I’m planning to bluff any 6 or 7. If he has big cards he probably folds, but if he has an overpair I don’t really expect this player to lay it down. Turn is 7c, so I bet, as is my plan, and he calls. I would probably give up on river if the turn wasn’t a club, but the three clubs on board might give him a flush draw with unpaired overcards. So when the river comes an ace, I punt another $30 and lose to AA.

More punting: Elmer opens button, I defend K9. I check-raise the JT7 two heart flop and barrel the 3h turn (I have 9h). River is a King and I bet even though I think I’m losing a decent amount of the time here and he calls with AQdd, the nut straight.

Solid -$300 start already.

11:36 AM: I’m not planning the full marathon today. I fly to L.A. at 2 PM tomorrow and I haven’t even unpacked from my last trip – let alone washed any clothes. I can probably still play until 10 PM or so though and get what I need to get done.

12:04 PM: Standard terrible start in these Palace red chip games. I open A9hh, someone three bets, both blinds defend. Flop is QJ8 with two spades and one heart. Elmer donks, Wiggum calls; it’s a bad spot but I can’t fold here. The PFR raises and we all call. Turn is a blank and it checks to PFR, he bets, two calls, and I’m still priced in. River Ts and Wiggum leads. Bleh. I call and lose to his 95ss. -$600 already. Beautiful.

12:26 PM: QQ holds from SB in 4-way 3-bet pot and I get value on all streets on J6325 runout, my first sexy pot of the day.

1:00 PM: Limp fest in front of me. I come along from cutoff with 85ss, button calls, and blinds call and check. Flop 853 with two diamonds. UTG bets, folds to me, I raise, button calls, BB calls, UTG 3-bets, I cap, all call. Turn queen and UTG is still betting. Against a reasonable player I might think I’m beat here – and I still could be – but this player is splashy and could be overplaying something I’m beating, so I raise. Button and BB both call $60 cold and UTG calls also. I’ve seen the button play sets like this, where he waits until the river to play aggressively, so I’m not 100% confident I’m good here. River is a 9, but not a diamond. It checks to me on river and I think it’s pretty close here. The flush draw missed but 76, the most likely straight draw, got there, and JT (unlikely) got there, plus a number of possible two pair hands have improved. I have no interest in bet-folding the river or calling a raise, so I just check and hope I’m good. BB has J9dd and UTG has J8hh (total overplay) and my hand is good.

1:12 PM: Radio Mike opens from MP and I 3-bet black kings and get it heads up. He calls. Flop is QJx all clubs and he check-calls me on flop and turn, before donking the river when the board texture hasn’t changed at all: QJ264. It’s very tempting to raise here because his line is so weird and it’s hard to imagine what hand he plays this way that I’m losing to, but I decide on call and he shows me A8cc for the flopped nut flush. A mini-victory for me as I lost the absolute minimum I could have on that connection.

1:47 PM: Sigh.

Five hand sequence:

AQss capped pot under the gun. Flop is TT3 and I don’t even make it to the turn (KK, JJ, Tx)

JJ small blind, peel ace high flop and check-fold turn vs AQ, A9.

JJ cutoff, I 3-bet and a non-aggressive player caps button. Flop is AJx. I check-raise because how do I not? Button flats and Wiggum is hanging around. Turn king. I should probably check-call this card knowing what I know about the button, but my hand says I must bet. He could have QQ. I don’t think he has AK. He raises and I just call down and lose to AA.

Poker is fun.

My success rate with big pairs in Palace red chip games has been laughable. On the bright side I’ve shown a win rate both in the $15/$30 and $30/$60 here so far despite running far below average (in my estimation).

2:15 PM: Wiggum opens and I 3-bet AA from MP, Radio Mike is stubborn in the big and three of us see the QTx flop. Wiggum donks, I raise, Mike is out, Wiggum calls. Turn K, Wiggum donks again. The ole double donk, eh? I probably should be raising this bet. This line smells more like KJ than KQ, but this board is not ideal for aces facing a decent amount of action. I just call. River is a T and now he checks. I doubt he’s getting tricky here so I have an easy value bet and my aces win showdown.

2:49 PM: Pretty cool to win a pot with aces above, but we’re back to normal: TT vs QQ; AQ whiff. KQ vs AQ and 99 on QJ9 when I’m the only preflop raiser. ATdd whiff QQJd6d. AQdd whiff J97d4d. AQcc 3-bet SB and whiff.

My image is amazing right now. Raise a ton of hands, whiff or lose every pot, and never show anything. Just looking like a total spewtard.

-$1000

3:19 PM: Elmer limps, I raise TT from MP, button calls, Radio Mike defends big. Flop 854. Mike donks, Elmer calls, I raise, both those guys call. Turn 9 and they both check-call. River jack, Elmer donks and I cry call and cry fold after losing to QJo. I told you he’s sticky!

I’m not running as bad as Peter is running good in these games but it’s a claim I’m really wanting to make!

3:37 PM: Woah. I got lucky. Two limps in front of me, I limp along with A4dd which elicits some razzing from my table mates that are shocked that I’m not raising. I tell them they’ve beaten me into submission. 7-way action to Q54 two hearts. I believe Elmer bets, Wiggum calls, I call, Muffin raises, and four of us see the turn for two bets. By gosh, it’s a 4 and I think I’m going to be able to check-raise the field. Elmer and Muffin call. River double pairs the board with a 5 and I feel like I should always still be good here so I bet and only Muffin calls and my pending reload goes on hold for the time being.

4:18 PM: A few noteworthy items:

Four players limp, I raise QTcc from the big and five opponents call. Flop is A84 with two clubs. I c-bet and everybody folds. Holy crap. Talk about the unexpected.

Muffin is racking up and it just dawned on us. No one that started this game has left yet. All original nine are still here. Almost five hours straight with no movement. Incredible!

Unfortunately, I have a feeling because the list has been locked out for five hours Pain-In-My-Ass Pete is about to go from 7th on the list to in the game.

And, oh my God, that is what just happened.

4:53 PM: New developments as there has been some movement.

Peter is in, The Human Torch is in, and another very live player is in. This game is still very good.

First clash with Peter goes my way. He opens, I 3-bet 88, one hitchhiker. Peter donks Q54 two club flop. Doesn’t need to have a queen here, I raise and he goes into Passive Pete mode. Turn 8. Hey now! Peter check-calls turn and can’t find a fold when clubs get there on river either. It’s a new day!

5:48: One limper, Radio Mike raises, PayBack Pete calls, I defend 76o. Flop is Q77. I check, Mike bets, Peter raises, I 3-bet because the jig is up if I call, Mike caps, Peter folds. Mike calls me down with KK. A little big pair bad luck reversal!

Typical Dark Knight MO: I am somehow down less than $200 now. At my worst I was my -$1200.

6:06 PM: New additions to the game:

Humpty Dumpty: the action player I mentioned earlier. It’s too good. I can’t help it.

Grumpy: Not many players I genuinely dislike at Palace but this is one of them. Big time whiner, criticizes other players… just an all around dick. Never seen him in $15/$30 but I’m glad he’s here because he’s my absolute favorite kind of person to beat.

Taz

Punish-Me Pete: Same guy, different day. Peter is getting smashed.

6:26 PM: Game Genie can’t fold the K4cc in a raised pot from the small blind, I 3-bet QQ from the big, and he gets the KK67A runout. On the bright side, he check-called flop and turn and let me check back river.

6:38 PM: In case my description of Grumpy wasn’t sufficient enough… Peter and I have never talked about Grumpy and I just got a text from Peter saying I’m tempted to 3bet any opens from s2 with atc. Atc means ‘any two cards’ and this message means Peter thinks he’s a dick too and wants to inflict punishment.

6:59 PM: Everyone is taking turns treating Grumpy like a punching bag. Humpty Dumpty had 88 vs Grumpy’s KT on T84K and got max action on the turn. Radio Mike had AQ vs AJ on 722Ax and took this line postflop: check-call, check-call, check-RAISE! Wow.

Peter is openly congratulating anyone that beats Grumpy on how well they played their hand.

7:06 PM: Grumpy has been bludgeoned to death. Everyone breathes a sigh of relief – except me. I can listen to that whining all night.

7:22 PM: Limper, Taz raises, Game Genie cold calls, I 3-bet KT suited on the button, Peter calls, Taz caps and five us see 664 flop. Everyone hates it and it checks around. Ten on turn, Peter leads, two calls, I raise, three calls. River Ace. Taz donks. I pay off his AQ.

Back to -$700.

7:39 PM: Prolix Pete (look it up) has left us – he’s going to Commerce for LAPC tomorrow also – and I might be able to listen to some music now.

8:17 PM: Five limpers, I have KK in the small blind. Obviously I didn’t win this pot.

9:43 PM: I’m still playing. I made a set of tens against Radio Mike where he thought it would be a good idea to donk an ace river. Also had JJ on A75AJ run out. I never got raised so I have to assume I was good all the way – although he did tank-call turn and snap-call river. Down about $700 still.

9:58 PM: Today Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall and watched videos on his phone all day. And that was enough to keep his attention on something other than playing every hand, falling over and cracking open.

He’s racked up now, but his phone is put away and he’s suddenly played three hands in a row. Could be trouble for Humpty soon.

10:08 PM: Capped pre with QQ and three different players raise on the T96dd flop. Humpty is still coming out guns blazing against two people that look like they have overpairs, so I’m calling down and I’m pretty relieved to be the only caller at showdown and I’m good against his ATdd.

Humpty Dumpty has remembered there’s a poker game going on around him and all that pain that goes with it. The wall is shaking!

10:41 PM: High variance poker alert. Mega-Maniac on my direct right. He’s raising at least 50% of hands (I’ve seen J9o and Q5s from MP), so when he raises here I try to iso with 55 but I get two hitchhikers, maniac caps. Flop 632dd. We cap it three ways. Turn 5d. It checks to me. I just can’t see any good reason to check this card against these players, so I bet, shake the caller, but the maniac raises again, I call. River is 4d and he leads out. I obviously can’t call and win so I turn my hand into a bluff and I definitely have fold equity against this guy. Unfortunately he has the least maniacal hand of all: AJ of diamonds. He tries to raise me but only puts out $60 so I feel like I have to roll my hand first and table it. Ugh.

11:12 PM: Maniac goes 4-4 against me and cashes out. Solid.

I open JTss, Radio Mike 3-bets, another player calls and three of us see JT6cc flop. I check-raise flop and both players call. I consider check-raising turn but I’m glad I don’t. I bet, Mike raises and I get to three bet. He calls me down with AA.

Radio Mike is flustered now. Right after those aces lose, he loses to 85dd after a KT7 two club one diamond flop to a running flush.

He can’t even contain himself: “Every time I get even I lose a bunch of stupid hands.”

I say, “What does even feel like?”

11:48 PM: Free play with K4o. Flop KQ3. It checks around. Turn 5. I check, someone bets, someone calls, I raise… and lose to A5 on the river. YAWN. I really love this line for this reason exactly. You induce someone to bet third pair and they can’t lay it down in a micro pot, even when they are getting check-raised.

12:27 AM: Cashed out -$618. Another ho-hum red chip session where not much goes right for me.

I land back in L.A. around 5 PM tomorrow but probably won’t be playing any poker.