Sunday, May 31, 2009

Good Beats!

A good beat is a bad beat you put on some poor soul. Here are two hands from today;

1. I push all in with Q7 for some reason. Two players call, one has A7 and the other has KQ so I was double dominated. I had a 4.5% chance of winning the hand and the flop came 77Q..... Good Beat!

2. I have AA and get it all in against someone with KK. His King comes on the turn as expected...... but my Ace comes on the river! Thank the stars for Barry Greenstein! That's another 4% hit on the river today! At least I had the best of it this time.

A Rare Experience for me..

I played the 20 quid rebuy at The Empire on Friday night and found myself in a strange position for a while - having a nice chip stack...

Hand 1
I pick up pocket fives in mid position with the blinds at 25/25. I raise to 50 to get a bit more money in there in case I hit my set. I get re raised to 125 by a bloke I put on AK - AT. I call and we see a flop of 6,7,8 rainbow. I bet 250 hoping to take it down there and the re raiser dwells for a while for effect and goes all in. I now put him on an overpair. I count my outs and I may have about 40% in this situation. I decide to have a gamble with my open ended straight draw and call. He has Queens. A lovely 4 comes on the turn and I double up to about 2000.

Hand 2
With the blinds at 50/100 I pick up pocket tens and raise to 250. I get called by a truly awful poker player who happens to be a pleasant person. The flop comes rags and I overbet the pot by pushing all in as I'm concerned about overcards hitting on the turn and river. The fish insta calls and shows pocket sixes which don't improve. I'm up to about 4000 chips.

When the break comes I add on and I have nearly 6000 to play with and I just know I'll blow the lot and fail to cash. Sure enough I go completely card dead after the break and get blinded down, then push with 76 offsuit and get called by two blokes with AT. My live cards couldn't help when an Ace flopped and I was out in 19th/49. Bugger. At least I've got Wednesday's game to look forward to - I'm taking my work colleagues up there so they can play live poker for the first time. Even if I don't cash it should be a laff!

Guess the Location!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

We Don't Let Outsiders Win Here....

Do you ever get the feeling you should have stayed at home and watched 'Britain's Got Talent'? Ok maybe not Britain's Got Talent, but some other fine TV show like 'Everest ER' or 'Match of the Day' would have gone down a treat.

The reason for this feeling is I intended to play some poker at The Empire yesterday but my plans were scuppered when I decided 'It's Bank Holiday! Let's drive up to London, I'll get parked easily!' How wrong I was. The world and his wife were in Central London and there wasn't a parking space anywhere. I refuse to pay 15 quid an hour at NCP on principal, so I drove all the way back home, had a coffee, then took the wife down to the G Casino at Thanet for their ten pound, one rebuy + five pound bounty tournament. You start with 5k in chips and it's a 30 minute clock so it's a slow one. I've become so used to The Empire Hairy Crapshoot and it's mega fast structure, this tournament dragged on so long it hurt. What also hurt was the low prize pool. Out of 63 runners, if I'd finished my usual 9th I would have cashed for 20 quid.

The 'G' at Thanet is populated by a load of regulars and a few internet kids who think they invented the game. The regulars hate seeing outsiders win a pot. They give a running commentary whilst a hand is being played and have a five minute post mortem when a hand finishes, especially if the outsider has the bare faced cheek to win. If I was in my young and hot tempered days I would throw a few fucks around the room just to raise pulses a bit, but these days I'm much more mature and easy going. I just take it all in and smile inside. Another thing about the regulars is their hygiene - they smell like they've been out in the fields digging potatoes all day. To be fair they probably have (Thanet is a big farming area of Kent), they could have stopped off for a quick shower before playing. Even the dealers were chipping in to ensure the room stunk of man sweat. Not good for my concentration.

As the night went on and tensions rose so did the body odour. By the time we were down to two tables the smell was so bad that visibilty was getting quite poor. Needless to say the wife finished in about 30th and I busted in 13th - only four off that 20 quid bonanza I was expecting. I've never been so pleased to bust out of a tournament in my life. Bring back the Hairy Scary Empire Crapshoot! All is forgiven!

My Pride and Joy - Home Grown Chilis!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Bank Holiday Poker

After spending the whole day laying wood flooring in the kitchen yesterday and spending today fitting skirting boards and a new work surface I'm going to need some poker action on Monday Bank Holiday. The wife needs to give me another lesson in how to play, so we might venture up to the Empire in Leicester Square for their afternoon bounty then their evening crapshoot.

In the online world I'm still trying to grind out my latest bonus on PKR. I've got to get 2000 more points for a cash bounty, which I hope to achieve this week (kitchen allowing). After a dip in online results I'm on the up now, so hopefully that will continue right up to Vegas.

A special mention to Magical Mystery Poker Tour, Amatay and The Poker Bankroll guys for putting me on their blogrolls. Thankyou all.

Profit / (Loss) - Both live and online
Cash - $695
Single Tables - $1751
Multi Tables - $324
Total - $2770

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I Wish I'd Gone to Macdonald's..

It’s a rare thing, me wishing I’d gone to MacDonald’s. There I was in Leicester Square all fired up a bit of poker at the Empire, just about to have a nice Big Mac and fries. For some reason I had a crazy thought that a nice pub meal would be very civilised.
Off I trotted to Yate’s in the square where I ordered the ‘Beer and a burger’ for £5.75. I had to have John Smiths as the computer said I couldn't have the Bitter I wanted, so I took my semi warm pint and sat down for about thirty seconds before my food arrived. I say ‘food’ in the loosest possible terms, as the burger was clearly micro waved about ten minutes ago and looked anaemic and processed, the bap was stale and the chips were limp.
The menu said the burger was ‘Prime Beef’. If there was any beef in that burger I’m sure it must have got there by accident. I wished I had a camera so I could film this sorry excuse for a meal and send it to trading standards. Instead of taking the meal back I did the British thing and ate it without complaint.
I sat in Yate’s for another half hour as I really hoped I would throw the whole lot up on their floor. I wanted to see if they were any good at cleaning, because their cooking was awful. Just before I left I noticed a smell of sick in the area I was sitting. I figured it was the proceeds of yesterday’s ‘Beer and burger’ meal deals.
All in all not the best preparation for a night of poker action!

The Poker Bit
After not being sick I got to the Empire at about 4.30pm. The £20 rebuy doesn’t start until 6.30pm so I played some 1/2 NL cash and lost £60 over the next hour and a half. My busto hand was when I flopped top pair and overplayed it against someone with a flopped straight. Prior to that came this hand:

I have 9 8 of hearts in mid position. The loose aggressive player UTG makes it £10 to call. There’s a caller and I think ‘I should push here for my last £42? Did I push? Of course not. I folded and watched the flop come Q, J of hearts and a blank. The other two players got their stacks in on the flop and of course the ten of hearts came on the turn, which would have given me the stone cold immortal (2nd) nuts on that board. It goes without saying that the £100 + pot was won by two pair. Sigh....

Shortly after my busto hand I start the tournament. I have a few hands of note ;

Hand 1
I’m playing my usual tight aggressive style when I pick up Queens. A player who’s folded makes a comment that the button looks keen on his hand as he tried to raise out of turn. I ignore this and put in a 4 x BB raise to which the button makes a minimum raise. I decide it may be ace king and call to see a raggy flop. He checks and I put my last 400 in before even thinking. He insta calls with his aces, the board bricked out and it’s time for an early rebuy!

Hand 2
I pick up pocket fives and fold to an early position raise when I had a feeling I would have flopped a set. The hand ends in a four way all in where I would have won with a rivered straight. At least I made the correct decision pre flop.

Hand 3
Coming to the end of the rebuy period I find AQ UTG and push all in. I get one caller who has A9 and my queen kicker holds. I now have 1500 to take into the freezeout period, 3500 after the £20 add on. 5k would be better but 3.5k will have to do.

Hand 4
I go through my customary survival period where I get no hands at all and I go down to about one or two big blinds. I hear you all saying ‘Don’t let it get to that stage!’ Every time I get aggressive with two or three tables left I bust, and most times I hang on and hang on I cash, so I have to go with what I know...
The blinds had just gone up to 600/1200 when I was moved to a new table, straight into the big blind. Bugger, 2100 left and in the BB for my tournament. I looked down to see KQs and I am happy with that. UTG limped, a big stack raised and I pushed. Both called and I was up against pocket sevens and Ace five. I spiked a King on the turn to triple up to 6500. Lovely old stuff.

I got to the final table where I needed to come 8th to break even on the night. I worked out it was £246 each for a nine way chop and offered it to the players. To my surprise and joy we agreed on taking £200 each with the other £450 being put on 1st, 2nd and 3rd. I busted out 9th when my pocket tens was busted by the legendary king two offsuit, but by then I was happy with an £80 profit. It was a great deal for me considering I was short stack at the table and was looking at a paltry £60 for 9th.

I'm looking to take my new work colleagues to the Empire for their first taste of live action. I know they will get ripped to bits. Is it cruel of me to be looking forward to it?

I grew these!!!!!!!!!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Hard Work in Currys

I bought a new laptop to take to work from Curry's at the weekend. It's a nice little Samsung 10". The price was 350 quid which I thought was ok. The thing was, if I'd listened to the Curry's salesperson and had everything he said I needed I would have spent closer to a grand. He reminded me of a double glazing salesman who just wouldn't let it go. I'll list what he tried to sell me ;

1. External DVD player - 60 quid
2. Carrycase - 20 quid (you get one in the box)
3. Insurance - 5 quid a month (covered on household insurance)
4. Norton 360 - 60 quid (Macaffe installed already and I think antivirus software is a conspiracy anyway)
5. MS Office - Hundreds of pounds (I have this already..)
6. Digital storage vault - I can't believe he tried to charge for this when I can get that free

I feel sorry for old people who go in there and don't know any better, they must come out with a load of stuff they don't need and then freeze to death over the winter when they don't turn on the three bar fire. Maybe I should start a service up where I go to Currys with folks and help them get just what they need. I would have to charge them for my time of course, but they'd still be saving money.


On a separate note I stayed in the Comfort Inn in Arundel on Saturday night, it was mouldy, cheap and nasty. If you go to Arundel stay at the Travel Inn nearby.

On the subject of poker, I'm concerned to see the Loose Cannon gas shut for a few weeks, and I'm seriously considering going to The Empire Tuesday for a bit of live action. I can't seem to win online at the moment, so my plans of increasing the bankroll before Vegas are looking like a failure. On the subject of Vegas I've got seven weeks to go and I can't wait!!!!!!

Profit / (Loss) - Both live and online
Cash - $815
Single Tables - $1710
Multi Tables - $44
Total - $2569

Friday, May 8, 2009

O lny srmat poelpe can raed tihs.

I Cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg.

The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae.

The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Amzanig huh? yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt! if you can raed tihs psas it on...

Message From Cousin George

It would seem George is up to his old tricks again ;


Saturday, May 2, 2009

Las Vegas Here I Come!

Not long now before I go to Vegas, I've been five years in a row and I'm as excited as ever. I'm flying to Boston first, picking up a connecting flight to Buffalo and then getting a cab to Niagra Falls to see a bit of nature for a few days. Curiously enough I'm staying in a casino so I'm sure there will be some poker action....
After four nights I'm jetting off to Vegas via Chicago for fourteen nights in the Bellagio. I can't wait!
Tonight I'm playing in a $4500 freeroll on PKR, where the winner gets a $2500 seat in a WSOP event and $2k spends. It's a nice little bonus for winning a cash game hand with a straight flush on the site this week. There are about 150 players in the tourney and it's winner take all. My preparation has already started, I'm tucking into a bottle of rough white wine, and with 45 minutes to go I think I'll be pissed by the time we start. Maybe I will play with reckless abandon and actually win the bloody thing!
Hand reports to follow...................
3 hours later ---- I came 25th/140 for a grand prize of nothing. My bust out hand was when the villain hit a three outer on the river (of course), but I wont dwell on that. The wine I had did affect my decision making, so I vow to stay relatively sober next time I play a big tourney (I'm glad I don't play many big tournies). I hope Jimbo did better than me in his drunken poker fest last night....