Reality Check For a Boorish American  

Posted by Alex Laforest

Big time reality check yesterday evening; went to play some NL25 cash game in a private card room and I must admit I never felt comfy with these stakes, pathetically being the highest I've ever played. I felt way out of my game, constantly doing the exact thing I was repeating myself NOT to do, such as not announcing to everyone "it's time to change gear" with my first live straddle... In short, I've been the boorish american :P... See, there's some 2+2 dude who wrote a partial European version of Rounders and instead of the proverbial sucker at the table, it's the boorish american:

"If you can't spot the boorish american in your first half-hour at the table, than your are the boorish amercian"

See here for the 'complete' partial rewrite. Lots of fun, let me tell ya!


In any case, this whole experience got me thinking about my game, and my relation to money. I am a scared little boy when it comes to dough, even though I paradoxically could not give more than a RAT'S ASS about my personal finances... Weird...

It also got me thinking about those pathetic stakes I'm playing and the humongous amount of fear involved in choosing those rather than investing to actually learn how to comfortably play at some more interesting levels...

- So now what?!?, asks the Cynical Voice in my head.
- I don't know actually... Shall I just quit?? Reassess my ambitions and just play for fun, perhaps even with play money??
- lmao
- Shut up, I'm serious...
- I know... You could also take this as a very good sign that you will never gamble your house or lose the bread'n butter money, that you have, in fact, a good basis of money management skills...
- Meh.
- Or take the bull by the horns and either pump some more money into your bankroll to extricate yourself from those pathetic micro-micro stakes...
- ... and accept the fact that to learn to win, I probably have to lose (read PAY) a decent amount of money...
- How many times you think Doyle went broke?

To be continued...


Stupid Prop Bet  

Posted by Alex Laforest in

Nic, my (only) poker buddy, and I just made an interesting prop bet: 10$ on who logs the most hands from Monday, Nov. 12, 2007 at 12:01am to Thursday, Jan. 17, 2008 at 12:01am. Why Jan. 17? Cause it's my birthday.. My 30th birthday at that... And I figured it could do as a deadline :D...

Day 1 tally:
Nic: 150ish
Alex: 216


Hard Target  

Posted by Alex Laforest in ,

I've just noticed that I only played about 16 000 online hands in a year, tourney and cash games combined. That's way not enough to reach any sort of satisfactory competency level, and I think I can fix that.

Having recently gone through the roughest patch of my very thin and still infant-like poker career, I got away from the game a little before going back on the felt in a freeroll. What better venue to get back on the horse than a no-buy-in event?! Turned out, I played great, making the best of the greatest (maybe 2nd greatest) suckout of my life - dealt QTo on the BB, 3 limpers, I check. Flop comes T-T-Q with 2 suited cards, and I'm first to act. Having not even played very very passively since the start of the tourney (we're at the 3rd or 4th level by then), I decide to continue doing just that and check, with sandbagging in mind of course :P. UTG bets about half the pot, UTG+1 calls, and I go for the ultimate trap by simply calling, hoping for a suited turn improving my opponents hand to a flush I'm beating. Alas, turn comes A offsuit and I decide to take the action in hand and bet about 3/4 of the pot. UTG insta-raises all-in and UTG+1 folds. Now, I must admit having NEVER put UTG on any hand, so sure of the strength of my hand. Now, I'm thinking is either sitting on K10s, K9 or J9... Or, and of course this hits me as I'm clicking "Call", he's got me beat with the infamous AT... Too late, I've called and he flips exactly that. I'm still kicking myself in the nuts for not having played my nuts more aggressively, whining about how life's a bitch and I should just quit poker and maybe everything else, when the river hits me like a sledgehammer with a 20 to 1 shot, peeling one of the 2 remaining queens. BOOM! I almost tripled up right there since i was getting short-stack, and got pot-commited early in the hand... This hand got me on track to finishing 13th out of 1614 players, for my best money finish in a large field tourney. All in all, my confidence started to build up again and I got back in the game, going back to penny cash games as well since my bankroll was already borderline before I was felted almost 3 times in that mere 50-hand interval...

And now, I seem to be back to the better me; even my homegame ROI is back to a somewhat decent percentage :P... But, I have been analyzing my game a little more, only to find out I haven't logged nearly enough hands to analyze properly. Thus, I have fixed myself a new objective: log in 10 000 hands before my 30th birthday (which, unfortunately is the next one :P). This means that I have to log 144 hands a day for the remaining 69 days before January 17th. I might not get it since I cannot dream to play every day (for instance, I know for a fact I will not be playing any hands on Nov. 17 and 18, which means I'm already stuck 288 hands :P), but if I do, I will have logged in some serious poker playing hours and should be closer to define what exactly is my favorite style of play and the best behavior for me at the tables.

Well, I feel I should write some clever conclusion here, but I must admit not reviewing this post so I'll just publish it and hope for the best.

A couple of days later...
For the record: I played for 13 days now and logged 1,301 hands, for an average of ~100 hands a day. Close but not good enough :P... On pace for a measle 6-7,000 hands. Still, I'll be seeing more hands as it goes by...



And now for something...

... completely different...

For all the media and art buffs out there, here's what I'm tripping on lately, besides poker... Comments and/or suggestions welcomed ;-).

  • Alias (Bendis!) (Graphic Novel)

  • Last Worthy Movie
    Milk (Gus Van Sant)

    And while we're at it, other personal stuff includes (contains French ramblings :P):
  • My Trials With Photography
  • Mise en Abyme (Movie Blog)