Saturday, July 25, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
Mike Caro, in Caro's Most Profitable Hold'em Advice, p. 260.
Beating strong opponents wins a lot of respect and a little money. Beating weak opponents wins a little respect and a lot of money.
So, unless you're honing your skills on select occasions, you should seek out the weakest possible opponents. There is no excuse to do otherwise. The most successful poker players in the world are not the ones who show a profit against the strongest opponents.
Mike Caro, in Caro's Most Profitable Hold'em Advice, p. 255-256.
If you want to start winning today, then stop letting your losses bother you. If you play your best game, losses won't bother you, because you won't have yourself to blame. It's easy to shrug off a loss if you've done everything you're supposed to do. It's not so easy to shrug off if you caused it or added to it.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Mike Caro, in Caro's Most Profitable Hold'em Advice, p. 215.
[Y]our lifetime profit will be the sum of your good decisions minus the sum of your bad decisions. And that truth doesn't change whether those decisions are made while you're in the middle of a winning session or the middle of a losing session.
Mike Caro, in Caro's Most Profitable Hold'em Advice, p. 217.
The best psychological way to handle losses is to begin every hand fresh. You're neither ahead or behind. You are where you are when the next deal begins. Your good decisions will give you the best chance of rising from that point. But if you lose that hand, forget it. It's on to the next one. Again, you're neither winning or losing. You're starting fresh. You're even when the hand begins. You are where you are. Remind yourself of that again and again.
Streaks, winning or losing, are always something seen in the rear-view mirror. There is never anything in the cards that will dictate that the streak either will or won't continue. So, you're always starting fresh. Just like every hand is a new start, every session is a new start. Never give a streak unwarranted importance that negatively influences your future.
Mike Caro, in Caro's Most Profitable Hold'em Advice, p. 215.
2. Don't Forget Poker's Most Important Secret
The secret is simply, "Play your best game all the time." It's a secret that's easy to acknowledge, but hard for players to follow, especially when they're losing....
What kind of a secret is that? Everybody understands it already. Sure, but not everybody does it. In fact, almost nobody does it. That's what makes it important.
The main reason that I chose the Excalibur for my play today (see post below) was that I had scored from http://showtickets4locals.com/ a free ticket to see Louie Anderson at 7:00, so I played some before and some after the show.
I have liked Louie Anderson for a long, long time. I actually remember his first appearance on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. This is the first time I've seen him perform in person.
He was charming and funny. It seems clear that he has, now, decades of material that he can call on and mix and match as the spirit moves him. Surprisingly, I think this detracts from the show. Things aren't as sharply timed and they don't flow from one subject to another as smoothly as when he had it all prepared as an integral whole. On the other hand, he did a fair amount of interaction with the audience, and it showed off his spontaneous wit. He made some very, very funny material from just asking audience members the obvious name, where you're from, and what do you do questions. For example, he learned that one guy worked at the While Sands Missile Testing Range testing the Patriot missiles. Anderson asked him, "Can I give you some coordinates? There's this poodle next door that barks all night."
I had another of my occasional semi-insomniac nights last night, so I was feeling pretty sleepy, which probably lessened my capacity to enjoy the show. It was certainly true that everybody else around me was laughing a lot more than I was. I didn't hate the show by any means, but found it just pleasant and mildly amusing for the most part, rather than fall-out-of-your-chair hilarious.
Anderson is a known commodity. You pretty much know the kind of material he does, as well as his favorite subjects (his childhood and parents, big family, being fat, Vegas), and that's exactly what you get. That makes this whole mini-review not particularly helpful, because you undoubtedly already know whether you're going to like him or not, based on his large body of past work.
Me? I like the guy, and would go again if given the chance.
I played at the Excalibur today. As you may have heard, the electronic poker machines were recently taken away. The room looks basically indistinguishable from how it was last fall. There's nice new dark blue felt on the tables, but that's about the only change.
Oh, and some new chips, as shown above.
Thanks to an anonymous reader for pointing this out to me:
Finally get in a game. first hand I'm in the Hijack. I look down at 4-2.
yes, it's a crap hand. but.........I read www.pokergrump.blogspot.com and he plays this hand a lot so I
figured, WTF. I limped. Button popped it to 15. Uh oh........everybody who
limped also called the raise so the pot was like 75 bucks when it came to me.
so, I did what any rational player should do. I called! flop came out 8-4-2
rainbow. checked around to me. I bet small - like 20 bucks. on guy calls. Turn
comes a Q. guy bets 30 with 40 behind. I raise him all in. river comes a blank.
I table 2-4 and he shows top pair. he gets up and walks over to his friend. his
friend says with amazement "but he called pre flop with 4-2!". I guess the
beauty of the hand is that if it hits nobody is going to give you credit for
bottom two and if you don't hit you get the heck out of dodge! I don't mind
though, I always like to start a session up!
Monday, July 20, 2009
Sunday, July 19, 2009
The Luxor poker room has moved since the last time I was there. It's a distinct improvement. It is now right next to the walkway that leads to Excalibur. It's a much, much quieter location than next to the sports book, even though it's still a mostly open room. (There is one wall.) The cigarette smoke stench was almost zero. They have also replaced the chairs with more heavily padded and, hence, more comfortable ones.
There are a bunch of jackpot promotions: high hand of the day, aces cracked all day, fixed-payout high hands, bad beat. But, of course, you pay for it, with a double dip from the pot.
Same lousy dealers, same lousy management.
Playing this afternoon at the Luxor I witnessed the most flagrant instance of collusion I've ever seen.
A boyfriend/girlfriend couple were occupying Seats 9 and 10, respectively. He was obviously a lot more experienced than she was. He was also the table big stack, with $600 or so.
In the hand in question, she was under the gun, and moved all in for her last $26. I was in Seat 1 and folded. The guy in Seat 2 called. He had a stack of $200 or so. Action then folded around to boyfriend in Seat 9. He announced, "All in," as he tossed out the $26 for the call. This prompted Seat 2 to fold.
OK, so maybe he has a hand like pocket jacks and wants to isolate and not have to play after the flop. Kind of an extreme way of accomplishing it, but within the realm of reason.
What followed, though, was not. As soon as Seat 2 had folded, Seat 9 threw his cards face down into the muck, without even waiting to see what his girlfriend had. She passed her cards back to the dealer face down as he pushed her the pot.
In effect, the boyfriend had given his girlfriend his own $26, plus Seat 2's $26. Of course, he ran the small risk that Seat 2 was slow-playing aces or kings and it would cost him, but he apparently decided that an easy triple-up for his woman was worth taking that chance.
I was not terribly surprised that the dealer--Frank, whose incompetence and unprofessional demeanor I've talked about before--said and did nothing. I was surprised, though, that Seat 2 didn't protest. He did, however, pick up his chips and leave in a pretty obviously disgusted mood.
What should have happened? The dealer should have alerted the floor. In my opinion, the floor should have given Seat 2 his $26 back from the pot, then booted the couple out of the room--or at least the boyfriend. I have no way of knowing if they have done this before, or if she knew what he was planning. But for the sake of the integrity of the game, they obviously can't be allowed to play together, and he clearly cheated. Her guilt is not as obvious, but I can tell you that she didn't look one bit surprised when her man mucked his cards, surrendering the pot without a showdown. If a friend of mine did that, I would be so aghast that I can't imagine I'd be able to avoid it showing.
This continues to be one of the worst-managed poker rooms in town.