Poker Words - A Poker Blog

Mostly a recount of my poker exploits along with a bunch of random other stuff just for fun.

Friday, March 31, 2006

Discard Jones

Discard Jones is a Holdem varient that I'm sure will be sweeping the nation in no time. It was invented by a couple of the regulars at our monthly game, and every so often it rears its ugly head. I don't recall if I was present as the rules were originally devised, but I'm pretty sure that it was created as a result of the first few people that were eliminated from our tournaments being really bored. With nothing else to do, they started acting as if the burn cards were theirs, and at each showdown point out that they would have won. I'm getting ahead of myself.

I think it is time to unleash Discard Jones upon the rest of the unsuspecting public.

Each player is dealt two hole cards, as in a normal holdem game, with the exception of the dealer. The dealer receives no cards andis also referred to as Discard Jones for the remainder of the hand. Alternately, the big blind could be made to play the part of Discard Jones, but I think it works best with the dealer.

There is a round of betting, which the dealer must play blind.

A three card flop is dealt. Normally the top card on the deck is mucked prior to dealing the flop. In Discard Jones, that burn card is instead given to the dealer, or whoever is playing the part of Discard Jones for this hand. If Discard Jones has already folded, then the card is mucked as normal.

After another round of betting a fourth community card is dealt, but again, rather than burning the top card, it is given to Discard Jones.

Discard Jones now has as many cards as the other players still in the hand.

There is another round of betting, and again, Discard Jones is given the burn card and the final community card is revealed. At this point Discard Jones has a total of eight cards to choose from when making his best five card hand, while the other players only have seven. There is a final round of betting followed by the showdown.

Now, rarely is Discard Jones played as described above. Normally the people that have already been eliminated from the tourney will follow along with the burn cards because they don't have much else to do. But that doesn't mean Discard Jones hasn't been attempted as part of a normal ring game situation. I'd recommend trying it. There's all sorts of interesting strategery involved.

First off, if you are Discard Jones, do you ever play a hand? Theoretically with the extra card, you should come out ahead more often than not, but how do you decide to stay in when you have to play the first round blind, and second round short carded?

If you aren't Discard Jones, how much to you raise preflop? Do you even want to chase Discard Jones away? What's the EV of your pocket aces against three random cards? I guess if I wasn't lazy I could figure that out, but instead I'll leave it as an exercise for you.

What happens when there are board shows two cards of the same suit? Are you worried about the flush? It really sucks when the river doesn’t bring the third card of that suit so you assume your straight is good, except that Discard Jones had three of that suit in the hole and you are screwed. In fact, it’s impossible for you to have the absolute nuts with anything less than top four of a kind.

So, now that you know the rules to Discard Jones, I challenge not you to wonder what Discard Jones would have had, the next time you're playing with your friends and board misses everyone. I bet he had you beat. Check and see. I know you want to.

Start working on you strategy now. I wouldn't be surprised if Discard Jones becomes a WSOP event in five years. Wouldn't that make some great TV? Discard Jones has the ability to inflict some brutal bad beats with his bonus card per round. And we all know how much ESPN loves showing bad beats.


Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Baseball Season?

Now I did it. In yet another example of poor financial decision making I went and joined a fantasy baseball league. There's $50 I'll never see again. I have been thinking about joining a league for a while, just no one I know wanted to set one up. So when Donkeypuncher set up a poker bloggers league I figured what the hell. Its not every day you can spend $50 to demonstrate your nearly complete lack of baseball knowledge.

I actually thought about pre-ranking my players for the draft. I've spent a fairly large amount of time prepping for the football drafts in the past few years so I figured it wouldn't hurt to familiarize myself with some of the experts projections and with lesser known players. After about 10 minutes I decided it was hopeless and Y!'s default rankings would be good enough. The draft is tomorrow and there is no way I'll have enough time to figure out a good draft strategy by then. I think I'll make it worse by trying mess with it. As long as I don't draft 5 second basemen maybe I'll be ok. Or not.


Sunday, March 26, 2006

WPBT Circuit Event #2

I played in the second WPBT circuit event tonight. I didn't do all that bad, finishing in 10th out of 48 players. The top 50% earn points on the WPBT leaderboard so at least I have that going for me.

It was a deep stack tournament which didn't stop me from trying to bust out in the first 10 minutes. I had pocket queens and had a raiser and caller ahead of me. I reraised and the original raiser doubled my bet. The flop was all undercards, six high I think and he lead out. I raised and he went all in. What am I supposed to do there? There are two hands that he could have me absolutely dominated, but there are a few I'm ahead of, that I could see him pushing with. I don't know how many times I've seen AK played like that. So I begrudgingly called, and he showed cowboys. I caught a third queen on the turn to keep me from busting out in last.

Other than that, nothing really exciting happened. I was kind of watching a movie as I was playing so I don't really remember too many details. 10/48 isn't too bad even if there wasn't any cash to go along with it. At least I'll be on the leaderboard now, even if it is towards the bottom.


Saturday, March 25, 2006

How I Spent My Spring Vacation

How I Spent My Spring Vacation

by Mike Miller

This is a bit overdue, but I’ve had a bunch of other things to catch up on.  And I haven’t played poker in about three weeks now so I don’t really have much else to write about.

Day 1.  Travel

It was 6:30 in the morning and I was hitting the snooze button for the third or fourth time, only this time, my alarm clock wouldn’t shut up.  Then I realized the reason it wouldn’t stop is because that obnoxious noise was coming from my cell phone, not my alarm.  What kind of asshole is calling me at 6:30 in the morning?    There could only be one person, and it’s my friend John.  John and his wife Allison were flying out of Richmond.  They had a connecting flight at O’Hare where my wife and I would meet up with them on our way to Hawaii.  He was calling because his flight was delayed, meaning he would miss the connection in Chicago.  Luckily he got rebooked for a later flight and would be arriving three hours after us, rather than two and half days as the airline originally told him.  

Other than that, the flight was rather uneventful.  My wife and I arrived on the big island on time, and were able to pickup the rental car, and check into our condo despite the fact that John had registered for everything.  I was expecting them to tell me that since he made the reservations he would have to be there to check in/rent the car/condo, but everything worked out ok.  Their flight got in on time, and we picked them up at the airport and the vacation was on.

Day 2.  Kona Beer Festival.

Ummmmm …. Rock?   We spent the early afternoon walking around Kona doing checking out the touristy shops and things.  We were basically killing time waiting for 11th annual Kona Brewers Festival to start.  John and I had pretty much talked this thing up to the point that it could never come remotely close the expectations we had set.  We had ordered tickets months ago, which was fortunate because it sold out.  It worked like this.  $40 got you entrance to the fest and eight tickets.  You also got a free beer mug.  They had over 40 microbreweries, many of which were local, although there were a good number of beers from the mainland.  They also had over 25 different chefs offering up samplings of their various cuisines.  Everything from sushi, to tacos, to lamb, to curry to deep fried apples, and chocolate fountains.  All the food was free, and each ticket you had got you a “4 oz” sampling of beer.  Most vendors gave a bit more than 4 oz.  Allison is pregnant, which meant John and I each got four extra tickets, and my wife isn’t much of a beer drinker (weird I know) so we had a few more from her.  I definitely got my money’s worth as far as beverage consumption goes.  Despite the expectations we had set, the festival was way better than we even imagined.  Even my wife gave rave reviews despite not fully partaking in the beer part.  Looks like they already have the date set for next year.  Get your tickets now.  Its totally worth the nine hour flight to attend.

Day 3.  Beaches.

Day three was the day we finally made it to the beaches.  We wanted to travel around the island checking out a bunch of different options.  A lot of the beaches there have different colored sands, which my wife wanted to collect.  We went up the western side of the island stopping at a salt and pepper colored beach and white sand beach.

The scenery on the big island of Hawaii is quite interesting.  You go from these lush areas filled with tropical vegetation to almost completely barren lava deserts wherever there was somewhat modern (within 100 years or so) volcanic activity.  There is also a pretty unique form of graffiti there.  Since the terrain is almost all black people will gather white rocks and pebbles, and use them to spell out names or slogans or whatever.  The landscape in some areas is covered with them.

I continued my streak of getting a bad sunburn on some obscure part of my body.  A few years ago we went to Cancun and I had my first snorkeling experience.  I had a shirt and life jacket on, so I didn’t think my back would get burnt at all.  Well my shirt rode up to the bottom of the vest exposing about a four inch strip on my back which was then exposed to direct tropical sunlight for hours.  It took a few years but I think the tan line has finally worn off.  Just for the record, sitting in a plane for four hours when anything that touches your back causes excruciating pain:  not fun.  The year before the Cancun trip we had gone white water rafting.  I managed to forget to put sunscreen on my knees which were exposed to the sun all day as we were sitting on the raft.  I think I still have scars.  Oh and putting on a wetsuit the next day because it was cold and rainy:  also not fun .

This time it was the back of knees that I missed.  They were a nice shade of purple by the time we went home.   Yeah, and walking when the backs of your legs are burn:  you guessed it.  Not fun.

Day 4.  Volcano.

On day four we were going to hit a few beaches on the southern end of the island, picking up some black and then green sand on our way to check out the volcano.  We were then going to drive around the volcano and then hike out onto the lava fields at night in hopes of seeing some lava.

Somehow we missed the turn for the green sand beach.  By the time we made to the black sand beach it had started raining.  We basically ran out grabbed some sand, took a picture and jumped back in the car.  

The island is a lot bigger than I expected.  It was about 100 miles from the town of Kona to the volcano.  It was still raining when we got there, and it was considerably colder than I expected it would ever be on Hawaii.  We scrapped our plans for doing any sort of hiking and opted for the much shorter drive around the rim of the volcano with a stop to check out a lava tube, and the steam vents.  The lava tube sucked.  It was basically a cave in the lava, and thanks to the rain, it was cold and miserable.  The steam vents were kind of cool, but still cold and miserable.  We headed back to Kona early and chilled in the pool.  The West side of the island, where Kona is located gets very little rain while the Eastern side where the town of Hilo is located gets all the rain.    As a side note, the next day we heard on the news that the rain washed out part of the road between Kona and the Volcano, so it’s a good thing we returned when we did.  

Intermission.  I’m a jinx.

Before I get into the second half of our trip, I want point out that my wife and I are Jinxes when it comes to travel. Consider the following examples.  

A few years ago some friends and I rented a house on North Carolina’s outer banks.  We traditionally get together for a week or long weekend around Memorial Day each year, and that year we were in North Carolina.  The second to last day of the trip saw a huge storm go through the outer banks, knocking out the power for at least the next 24 to 48 hours and forcing us to cut our vacation short by a day.  Now if you consider that on its own, it’s probably not a big deal, but if you consider the next few pieces of evidence I think you’ll see a pattern.

A few years before that my wife and I were on our honeymoon in Belize.  I don’t blame you if you don’t know where that is.  I didn’t until I started looking for vacation destinations.  It’s a small country on the Yucatan Peninsula, South of Mexico and East of Guatemala.  It’s well known for its great snorkeling/scuba diving, Mayan ruins and Jaguar reserves.  Oh, and the first season of Temptation Island was filmed there.   We spent the first half of our trip inland doing jungle tours, and excursions to Mayan ruins and stuff like that.  The day before we were to head out the Cayes for a few days of beachfront leisure at we received a call from our travel agent.  (There were no TV’s or radios at the lodge).  She said that we might want to consider staying where we were for an extra day since there was a pretty major hurricane on its way through the caye we were going to stay on.  The next morning the hotel staff informed us that they were evacuation the lodge since it too was in the path of the hurricane.  We were already a few hours inland and had to move further in, almost to the Guatemalan border.  It ended ok, as we were only relocated for an extra day and the hurricane missed our area.  We made it to the now almost deserted island a day late and had a great time with the remainder of our vacation.  It was just a little more adventure than I bargained for.

This year I had tickets to see a Bears away game.  Booked the airfare and everything.  I bet you can’t guess where it was.  Yeah that’s right.  New Orleans.  At this time at least Mother Nature unleashed her destruction before I was there, although I’m sure that’s little consolation to the city’s residents.

Now where was I?  Ah yes.  Kauai.

Day 5.  Rain, and Travel to Kauai.

On Day five we headed to the Garden Island of Kauai.  At the airport we were warned that while the flights were on time at the moment, there were strong storms moving in and flash flood warnings, so we might end up getting delayed.  Our flight did make it out on time, but that was about the only thing that went right for the next week.  

The guy at the car rental agency said we might have problems getting to our condo since there was a landslide earlier that day.  Fun.  Fortunately they had been working on the road all day, so by the time we got there they were almost done.  We were only delayed an hour or so.  Our condo wasn’t ready when we got there anyway so we drove around for a bit and checked out the scenery.  It was kind of late by the time we checked in, so we didn’t do too much else.

Day 6.  Also Rain, but, some sunshine too.  

The weather channel was calling for rain all week, and issuing more flood warnings every hour.  A reservoir on the North Eastern side of the island burst the previous night destroying several homes in its path.  At least one person was dead, and several were missing.  People in the Northern most towns were getting airlifted out.  We were on the southern town of Koloa, near Poipu which wasn’t hit quite as bad, although the reservoir closest to us was also close dangerously high.  As we learned on the Big Island, the Western side of the Island tends to be dryer, so we headed out that way, touring the little towns and taking in the scenery along the way.  The beach was actually rather nice and we managed to get a few hours of sun.  

Day 7.  Also Also Rain.  And then some more rain.

Ummm…. Suck?  This time the entire island got it.  There would be no sneaking off the West for us.  It rained all day, pouring for hours at a time before letting up for ten minutes and then pouring again.  During one abnormally long break in the rain we ventured out for a walk.  We were gone for all of five minutes before the rain picked up again and we got drenched.  I had planned on getting in the water a lot this trip, but this wasn’t quite what I had in mind.  

The one good thing about the situation is that this was the first day of the NCAA tournament, so I watched basketball for about 12 hours.  The 5 hour time change works great when it puts live sports on my TV at 8am.  

Just to give you another indication of bad the rain was, this was Allison’s birthday and we had reservations at the restaurant that happened to be next door to our condo.  It couldn’t have been more than 100 feet away from our door.  We drove.  And used the Valet parking.   The valet probably had to park further away than the parking lot for our condo.  

After dinner we went into town to pick up something to mix with the excessive amounts of rum we had already purchased.  Upon returning to our condo we noticed a patrol car parked outside.  The officer was recommending that we evacuate the area to somewhere more westward because the water level was almost up to the only bridge into this section of the island.  We had noticed that the water levels were impossibly high on our trip in, but didn’t consider that the bridge might be in danger.  

We really didn’t know where else we would go, and we were going to be stranded somewhere regardless, so we figured we would just hole up in our current location.  But first we had to go back across the bridge into town to pick up food and supplies for the next few days and hope they didn’t close the bridge before we got back.

We made it back safely and I don’t think they ever had to shut down the bridge.  

Day 8.  That’s right.  Rain.

The weather channel claimed this day would be mostly sunny.  Apparently by mostly sunny they meant continual heavy rain, because that's what we got.  As we were sitting in the condo prepared for yet another day of just watching basketball and lounging around, one of the nearby condos decided it would be great time for some home improvements. I'm not sure what they were doing, we theorized that it was some sort of router type machine, but whatever it was it generated the loudest most mind numbingly awful sound you could possibly imagine.  After about ten minutes we couldn't take it any more and decided to drive somewhere in hopes of finding something to do.  Its probably a good thing we did leave because my wife might have killed someone, obnoxious noise or not, if she was forced to spend another vacation day trapped in that tiny condo.  

We headed into Lihue, which is the big "city" on the island.  At least I assume so.  It’s where the airport is anyways.  We drove around for a while, and checked out the Kauai Museum which killed a few hours.  We were all in bad spirits, and starting to contemplate moving our flight up a few days so we could just go home and get not have to deal with the crappy weather on Hawaii.  

We ultimately opted to stay since there really wasn't much benefit in going home.  It was supposed to be cold and snowy in both Chicago and Richmond.  Instead we drove to see the Wailua falls, which you can only see from the road anyways, so it didn't matter if it was raining.  Just in case you doubt the amounts of rain that we were receiving, this is what the falls should look like.  

and this is what it did look like.  That's a lot of water.

On the way to the falls we started to see patches of blue sky.  It was almost too good to be true.  We tempted fate by jumping back on the highway and heading west, where the clouds were breaking up more and more.  By the time we got to the beach the sky was almost clear.  

In our optimism we had packed our beach clothes and chairs, and boogie boards before heading out that morning, so we were all set for an afternoon of beach time fun.  Unfortunately all the rain ran off the island taking large amounts of dirt with it and contaminating the entire shore line.  Instead of the picturesque clear blue waters, we had dirty red brown dirt colored waters, and were warned not to go in due to high bacteria counts.  So we settled for sitting in the sun for a few hours.  

We even got to see a sunset for the first time on our trip that evening.

Day 9. Surfing.

One of the items on our list of things to do while in Hawaii was to learn how to surf, and we managed to check that off in the morning.  It was actually much easier that I expected.  Once you can stand up, it’s not too hard to keep your balance and ride the wave in.  The challenge is catching the wave in the first place.  Fortunately we had an instructor to help us and give us a little push if we needed it.  You probably don't expect surfing to be all that tiring but it really is.  Before you can ride a wave in, you have to paddle your way out there, and that is exhausting.  We were only going out about 40 feet, but after an hour or so, I was ready to call it a day.  

The rest of the day was cool and cloudy again, and we really didn't do much else.

Day 10.  Sightseeing and checking out.

This was our last day in Hawaii.  We checked out at 11 and went out to drive around the canyon.  Of course this was the sunniest day we had, but we couldn't go the beach because we had to check out of the condo and we had no where to shower/change afterwards.  So we drove up the Waimea Canyon and checked out the scenery.  I'm glad we did, because it was amazing.  I’ve never been to the Grand Canyon but John and Allison said it was similar except green.    

We drove all the way to top, stopping at the various lookouts along the way.  On the way back we stopped to do a little hiking which was another activity that was on my to-do list.  I was pretty disappointed that we hadn’t been able to do it yet, but slopping around in the mud and rain with just didn’t sound like much fun.  We didn’t go far because didn’t want to do anything to strenuous without the ability to shower before getting on a plane, and plus it started raining again.

By the time we got back from the canyon and drove to Lihue, we had just enough time for dinner before checking in at the airport.  

And thus ends the longest post ever on this here blog, and it had absolutely nothing to do with poker.  If you made it this far then you have way too much time on your hands.


Monday, March 20, 2006

Back from Hawaii

I'm back from Hawaii. To say they some rain while I was there would be a bit of an understatement. I think so far for the month of March, they already have received more rain on Kauai than they did during all of last year. Despite that we still had a pretty good time. I have a ton of other things to catch up on, but I might write up a more detailed summary of the trip tomorrow. I need to wait for some pictures to be developed/emailed to me.

Since it did rain so much, I got to watch more of the NCAA tournament than I was expecting. Could the Big 10 have sucked any harder? Its a good thing I wasn't able to fill out a bracket because I don't think many of the teams I thought would advance got too far.


Thursday, March 09, 2006

Off to Hawaii.

In about 12 hours I’ll be boarding plane destined for Hawaii. Not that going 10 days without posting is abnormal for me, but at least this time I have an excuse. My friend mentioned that he might bring his laptop, so I might try to borrow it so I can put in my annual no chance in hell of winning NCAA tournament picks. Just in case I don’t get my picks in here’s my final four predictions based on Joe Lunardi’s bracket as of nowish

UConn, Duke, Ohio State and Illinois. Dammit. Yesterday he had U of I and Duke in the same bracket and I was so looking forward to predicting the upset there. God I hate Duke. My dream tournament would have Illinois going through Notre Dame, Michigan, Michigan State, North Carolina, Kansas, and the Duke. I threw the Michigan teams in there just because I can’t think of any other schools I really hate right now. When in doubt Michigan is a good choice.

That’s all I got. I should probably start packing.


Sunday, March 05, 2006

Online Poker is so Rigged

Online poker is so rigged. I know I’ve mocked people in the past for statements like that, but the following situation happened to me a few too many times this weekend to be mere coincidence. I’m pretty sure that someone has rigged the software against me, and what’s worse, they aren’t content to just see me lose, it has to be in the most painful manner possible.

Here’s what happened. I played a number of sit-n-goes this weekend and I would inevitably end up in a situation where I was either relatively short stacked or the other person in the hand was. I would make a preflop raise, and get called. I would then catch a decent size piece of the flop and either end up all-in or putting my opponent all in.

When the cards are revealed I would see that I started with a significantly better hand, say ATs vs K6o, but was out flopped. [A K 6] for example. Now that’s fine. It sucks, but it happens. You aren’t going to win every hand you play, even those where you start out ahead. I can accept that. What tends to put me on tilt is what happens on the turn and river. The turn brings me a card that puts me back in the lead in the hand. In this case, it was a ten, and just as I’m doing my little happy dance of joy thanks to the newfound balance in the world, the river card comes up and screws me. Something like another six to give the clown a full house.

That whole, “You’re behind, oh wait now you’re winning, just kidding you lose, sucker “ scenario happened over and over. The only possible explanation is that someone behind the scenes at FullTilt is out to get me. I don’t know what I did to piss them off, but they’re certainly getting their revenge.


I was watching a movie with my wife last night, and playing a little poker at the same time. I must be in some kind of tilty mode, because I decided that jumping up to $2/$4 would be a good idea despite the fact that my previous experiments at the level didn’t work out so well and lately I haven’t been running all the well at $1/$2 either. I think subconsciously I figured I could recoup my losses faster by moving up in limits. Because that’s always a great idea. I hear lot of gamblers get out of debt that way.

That’s not the point. There was this guy at the table that became my nemesis for the night. He was two to my right, and raised what seemed like every hand. In reality my PokerTracker stats have him raising 15% of the time, but it seemed a lot more than that. Every time he was the first one in the pot pre-flop he would raise, and every time he was on the button, which meant I was in the BB he would raise. It was a little annoying, but not too bad because I was able to play back at him often enough and get him to fold. He actually seemed to have some pretty good post flop discipline and knew when to bail out of a hand and when he could get his opponents to fold.

He had about $50 when I stat down, and was at almost $300 when I left. In addition to playing a ton of hands, and playing very aggressively, he was getting more than his share of favorable boards.

It became my goal to extract as many chips from him as possible. I knew if I played long enough, I would get into a situation where I had him dominated and I could get him to bluff into me for a lot of chips. While we were in hands together a fair number of times, one of us would usually bail before getting too heavily invested.

At one point I was down a fairly significant amount from my original buy in, and starting to get frustration induced tilt. I had slow played a few big hands and it ended up costing me and it seemed like few times that I would make a hand, someone else would make a slightly better hand. My top pair top kicker or top two pair would lose to a set on a disturbingly regular basis.

In this particular hand I had AQs UTG and my nemesis was in the BB. I raised and everyone folded except him. The flop was TT7, and he bet. I was fairly sure this didn’t help him so I raised and he called. In past hands this scenario would be followed by him check folding on the turn.

The turn was rag but he bet. I figured that didn’t bode well for me as he had been giving up on hands he didn’t like when he met resistance. Still. There was a reasonable chance that he was still bluffing, plus I hated him because he was running over the table, so I called.

The river didn’t help me either, and again he lead out. I called out of frustration. There’s no reason I should have called. Bluff-calls on the river are not usually something you find in a winning poker player’s arsenal but I was tilty and didn’t care. He had Q6, which was nice because it was about the only hand he could have possibly had that I could beat. He then called me a “stupid fish donkey bi atch”. I try not to encourage people who feel the need to berate/coach other players at the table, but in hindsight, I so wish I had taunted him there.

After that hand we generally stayed out of each other’s way, and he found the time to give some helpful instruction to a few other members of the table. He was big into criticizing people for making the exact same plays that he would make. Nothing makes me want to beat a certain player more than when he criticizes other people’s play, especially when he makes all sorts of questionable plays himself.

After a few hours I had clawed my way back to even. I decided to play one more orbit and then call it a night. The first hand of that orbit gave me wired cowboys, and a nice sized pot, meaning that I was probably going to finish up ahead for the night.

On the very last hand I was going to play I’m dealt a pair of aces. I raise it up and everyone folds to my nemesis in the big blind and he reraises. Oh happy day, I’m finally going to be able to take some chips from this fool I think as I cap the betting. The flop was 774, which seems harmless enough. Maybe he called with a seven, but it doesn’t seem likely. He check calls my bet. The turn is a jack and this time he check raises me. It’s possible he has a seven after all. He’s certainly representing one anyway. JJ is reasonable as well. There’s also a pretty good chance that he has nothing and he’s trying to get me to fold. I’m not happy about it but I raise. I’m not letting him scare me off my aces that easily. He caps. The river is king and this time he bets first. I raise again and he three bets. No longer confident, I only call, and he turns over his pocket kings for a full house on the river.

So I had a dream scenario. Aces against Kings with my designated bitter rival starting off the hand needing a ton of help. I was going to be great. I was going to win a huge pot and then leave before he could try to get any of it back. But alas, I was rivered, and my potential winning session gets wiped out in heartbreaking fashion. As I was saying, poker is so rigged.


Saturday, March 04, 2006

2006 National Heads-Up Poker Championship

The brackets for the 2006 National Heads-Up Poker Championship have been released. The tournament will air on NBC starting on April 16th.

You can check out the bracket here. Or goto the website for whatever other details might interest you here.

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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Random Comments

Random Comments

If I was smart I would break this post up into a bunch of little posts so that it looks like I post more frequently than once a week, but I’m not so instead I present to you: one long post for your reading enjoyment.

What does FC mean?

I wanted to play at GamesGrid on Sunday to try to work off some of the $8 billion bonus that I have sitting there.  Unfortunately there were very few tables active, and most of them were full.  Except for a few of these “FC” tables.  I had noticed them before and wondered what was different about them.  All I could tell was that the max buy-in was a little less then the non-FC varieties of the same game.  

I pulled one up and I was amazed at the loose aggressive play.  There were a few players that had more then five times the max buy in, and there were all-ins a plenty for well over the max buy in.  I was almost afraid to join in but I figured I could just sit back and wait for a big hand and then hopefully double up.  Plus the large pots meant I would be earning points towards the bonus at a much higher rate than normal.  

After a while of folding garbage and watching people lose their buy-ins and rebuy like they had infinite hordes of cash just sitting around, I decided to check my points balance to see how I was doing.  That’s when I noticed something wasn’t quite right.  It claimed I had not earned any points this session.  It also claimed that my bankroll had not changed and that I had $0 in play.  Hmmmmm.  

So, I go back to the table lobby and see that I have the “all stakes” option checked.  Apparently this also includes “Free Chips” which is what FC stands for.  That would explain the maniacal play I had been witnessing.  And it only took me a half hour to figure that out.  I know.  Sometimes my genius amazes even me.  

2005 WSOP Tournament of Champions

I finally saw the TOC the other night.  I say that assuming that it has been rerunning on ESPN for quite some time now and I somehow managed to avoid it.  For all I know this week was the first time it aired.  I came in towards the end, just as Mike Matusow was sucking out on Steve Dannenmann twice in the course of a few televised hands.  That left him, Phil Hellmuth , and Hoyt Corkins as the last three remaining.  As much as I can’t stand Hellmuth or Matusow, that was some good TV.  Watching those two go at it, trying to put each other on tilt was classic.  I have new found respect for Matusow as he really seemed to piss Phil off.  Its too bad Corkins couldn’t have won the thing.  

Volleyball Update

My volleyball team finally started winning.  We had to get demoted to the special ed. league to do it, but so what?  The league is broken up into three seven week long sessions.  There are five divisions, A Through E.  At the end of each session the best team in a division is moved up, and the worst moved down.  We stated in C because we figured we would do all right there, and it was on a day that worked out well for everyone on the team.  We were competitive.   If by competitive I mean finished with 4 wins out of 21 games, in dead last.  So we got demoted to division D.  No big deal we figured.  We’d just win this division and be right back in C for session three.  Yeah.  Not so much.  We were a little more competitive this time. Winning five games, and even a match, but again we were demoted.  So far, two weeks into the division E session we already have six wins.  And we’re not even trying.  It isn’t even worth playing.  I’m pretty sure that our opponents don’t have full use of their limbs because that’s about the only way you explain how much they suck.  I hope our opponents in the other divisions didn’t think playing us was as boring as we think playing these other teams is.   On the plus side, our games finish early so I can get home at a reasonable hour.

New Toys

I have two new computers arriving soon.  The first is a new server since my current server just decided last week that it wasn’t going to run anymore.  I have no idea what the problem was.  It would just sit there trying to read from the cd drive without actually doing anything.  Luckily the hard drive was OK, and I was able to drop it into the shell of my old desktop whose hard drive had crashed a few months earlier.  Speaking of which, my laptop is also getting up there in years, as I mentioned a few weeks ago, so I’m building a new desktop to replace it and my old desktop.  And yes I do need that many computers.  No one asked you.  I was going to be lazy and just buy some prebuilt machine from Dell, but a coworker of mine just built his own, so I stole his part list, and basically ordered the same machine.   I still need new monitor, but those are a bit pricey.  I may have to wait on that.

So I should have some new toys soon, the only problem is that there is a good chance they will be arriving in the middle of March when I am going to be in Hawaii.  Hopefully UPS won’t just return them.