Poker Account Vigilance

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December hasn’t been a great month economically, though I’ll do the final tally tomorrow and post as usual. That said, I’ve had more than decent success in the past 10 days in qualifiers.

Last Saturday, I came second in a qualifier that paid only the top two spots, and I won an entry into the weekly big Sunday tournament. I played, didn’t take notes (which is why I didn’t post), and finished in 484th out of 832. Not a good result.

That same Sunday, I won another qualifier, which only paid the winner. I rarely win tournaments, though I often cash, so winning was very gratifying. Since I already had won a seat for that week, I didn’t check my account for the automatic deposit of TDs (Tournament Dollars), which is what I would use to enter a future event without deducting any cash from my account.

In the few years that I have been playing online poker, I have never had a problem with these automatic credits. They are always there, period. So, on Friday, when I checked for my 215 TDs (each TD represents a real dollar, and the entry fee into the Sunday big one is $215), I was absolutely shocked to see no TDs in my account. I instantly wrote to them, and it took over 24 hours (and another frantic communication from me) to get someone to finally put the TDs in my account.

So, they did the right thing, but if I hadn’t checked, I wouldn’t have known until I needed to use them, and it would likely have been too late for that night (though I’m sure they would have made it right for a future event).

Every few months, they do a fantastic promotion. On the Saturday before the big tourney, they run their usual array of tournaments. However, on the special day (yesterday was one of them!) everyone who makes the final table (top 10 finishers) in 16 different tournaments, gets a free entry into the Sunday big one.

What makes it special, is that you also get the normal cash prize you would otherwise have gotten. Normal qualifiers are just the entry, so you pay to get into the qualifier, and if you win, your entry fee into the qualifier is your entry into the big one.

So, I entered a few of the tournaments during the day. I cashed in three of them, and finished in ninth (final table!) in one of them. So, I made money on the day, as well as winning another entry. Again, I saw no TDs, and I wasn’t automatically entered into the tournament (that had never happened before either!).

So, I wrote again last night. Today, we drove to VA to spend New Year’s Eve with our friends. When we got here, I logged on and saw that they entered me into the tournament. Cool. They did the right thing.

But, before we left NY, our friends said we were having dinner in tonight, so I knew I could play. When we got here, they said we were going for dinner to another couple’s house, so now I wouldn’t be able to play, or I would be anti-social. No problem (I thought). I’ll just unregister, and get the 215 TDs. So, I did.

When I checked my account, no new TDs. Oh oh, here we go again. I immediately wrote to support again, in a bit of a panic, because there was only one hour to the tournament starting time. If yesterday’s deal was use it or lose it, I needed to be reinstated, and be anti-social.

When I checked again five minutes later, I saw that I was credited with $215 in cash! Wow, that’s even sweeter than the TDs, not that I intend to withdraw the cash. Again, the site did the right thing.

Still, the point of this post is to say that you have check your poker account regularly, to make sure that everything that you expect to happen to it is actually happening. In my case, alls well that ends well, but only due to my vigilance!

November 2007 Poker Summary

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Very short post this time around. I didn’t get to play too much this month, but a reasonable amount nonetheless. I already reported on the one live tourney here, with excellent results in that one. 🙂

I’m posting this early because we have dinner plans tonight so I know I won’t be playing again this month.

Total profit of $268.28, all of it explained by my one in-the-money finish in the big weekly tourney this past Sunday. Clearly, the rest of the month was basically break even.

I also won four free entries into the nightly 7pm Omaha Hi-Lo tourney that I like so much. I deferred three of them (which I’ll use in December if I can), but I played in one on Wednesday night, and missed the money by two players. Oh well…

No big tourney entries earned, but I can’t play this Sunday anyway. I just missed winning a free entry by one player, but I made a profit of $21 attempting to win it, so it’s not too terrible.

Not a bad month, and back on track in the profit column. If you add the live cash too, then it was an excellent month!

See you next month. 🙂

Decent Result in Sunday Poker Tourney

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Well, the title gives it all away. You don’t need to read any further. 🙂

Seriously, a minor cash, but even the worst prize in the weekly tourney is a good one, when you don’t pay full freight to get in.

This is my third post of the day, and all three end with success, so this must be a good day! 😉

Here are my detailed notes:


908 entrants, top 100 paid

Last “pre-won” entry that I had in my account. If I want to
play in another big tourney, I’ll have to play (and win) a
qualifier. I haven’t played much poker at all in the past
few weeks, and no qualifiers at all…

Nice start. After folding the first 10 hands, including my
blinds, I picked up AA. I was in middle position, everyone
folded to me. I raised (to 35 chips, blinds were 5-10). I
expected everyone to fold, since this was the first hand I
played. The big blind called. Flop was T63, two diamonds. I
didn’t have a diamond. He bet 75 (the pot). I didn’t want to
just call, because of the diamond draw.

I raised to 225. He called. The turn was 8d, big scare
card. He bet 250, I just called. River was Kh (safe card,
presumably, for me). He bet only 100. It could have been a
sucker bet, looking for me to raise, and the pot was already
a nice size, so I just called. He had QhTd, so he had a pair
of 10’s. Nice win.

On the next hand, I had 99. One person min-raised, and
another called, so did I, plus one other later on. Flop was
J94, with two spades. One person bet 95, and I just called,
hoping for another caller. None. The turn brought a 10 (so
there was 9TJ on the board). He bet 185, and I raised to 880
(pot), to make it expensive to draw to a straight.

He thought for a long time, then folded. I’m hardly “in the
chips”, but it’s a better start for me than in a while…

841 left, in 99th (I was 75th earlier)

I’m as big an idiot as they come, seriously. I just
mis-played a hand so badly, and I knew at every bet that I
was making the wrong play. Cut my chips in 1/2, which is
exactly what I deserved. Man, it’s bad enough to play badly,
but it’s way worse to be aware of it in advance, and still
do it…

779 left, in 679th (ouch!)

AA just held up against AQ. He was all-in, I wasn’t, but
close enough to be a near double. Back to a reasonable
place, though less than before I made my horrid mistake…

Made it to the first break! 🙂

724 left, in 278th (somewhat better)
676 left, in 357th
653 left, in 253rd
629 left, in 361st (bouncing around a bit…)
484 left, in 396th (this hand could be it!)

Excellent! I had TT in the big blind. I had 200 in the
blind, and 1800 behind it. One guy raised to 500. I was
going to go all-in. The guy behind him went all in for
2635. I called. The first raiser folded. All-in guy had J9d,
so he was bluffing or panicing. The board ended up with four
hearts, with the Ah as well. I won, and am in reasonable
shape now (more chips than I ever had, but the average is
higher now too…).

The first raiser would have beaten me, so I was lucky he was
re-raised. He either had an A or a heart, either way, it
worked out well for me. 🙂

450 left, in 210th

Made it to the second break! 🙂

419 left, in 235th

Just got lucky. Guy to my right raised to 1000 (blinds are
150-300). I went all-in for 3350 with AKd. He called. He had
KK. I was in trouble. A came on the turn, and I doubled up.
Now in much better shape! He’s not happy…

327 left, in 131st
311 left, in 92nd
260 left, in 123rd

Hit with AA against AK against the same guy who I got lucky
on with my AK against his KK. He’s out, and I’m doing pretty
well now!

236 left, in 44th
180 left, in 89th (all from losing multiple blinds)

Made it to the third break! 🙂

155 left, in 108th (looks like another tight one!)
143 left, in 112th
137 left, in 116th
131 left, in 114th
126 left, in 113th
120 left, in 114th

Now all-in with JJ which held up against KJ. Whew!

118 left, in 80th
113 left, in 82nd
111 left, in 90th
107 left, in 91st
105 left, in 90th
103 left, in 92nd
102 left, in 87th (about to be the big blind) 🙁
101 left, in 86th (AT in the BB, but I can’t call) 🙁

Ha! Someone else bombed out while I stalled, and I
re-raised all-in and got called. He had A6, and I won!

Ridiculous ending… The very next hand, I’m in the small
blind with AKo. UTG raises, everyone else folds. I raise
all-in. He has me covered, but barely! He thinks for a long
while, then calls with AQd. I was a 70.9% favorite pre-flop.
The flop came 7dJdJc. Oh oh… Turn was 9d, and I was toast.

Out in 99th. Won $300 for my “free” entry. Can’t complain,
but man, doubling there would have put me in the top 20!

No complaints, but one of these days, getting lucky just a
second time (instead of only once!), and I might have a shot
at a real prize!

Another Sunday Poker Loss

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Here are my notes, nothing to add…

949 entrants, top 100 paid

Finally got to use one of my two previously won entries into
the weekly big one. As you (may) know, we’ve been busy the
past few weekends (all good stuff), and I haven’t been able
to play much online poker in general, and not at all in the
weekly big one…

We’ll see if the rust helps or hurts. 😉

Won one hand early, and was in 56th for a second. After a
few more hands, and a fold of both of my blinds, was down
to near 200th, so the above was meaningless…

Won a reasonable hand, and moved “up” to 158th, now slowly
drifting downwards again. After my win, one guy lost an
all-in with AK to A9, when the A9 hit the 9. He was pissed,
and called the other guy a “donk”. The very next hand, I had
77 in the small blind. The guy who was steaming went all-in
for his last 835 chips. I had 3100, and considered calling.
I decided to fold, since it is still very early. One guy
called him. Steamer had AQ, caller had KQ, neither hit, and
steamer doubled. I would have won, but think my fold was
correct (at least for my style of play…)

882 left, in 179th

Just had 88 in the BB. One guy min-raised, so I was looking
forward to making that call. The guy behind him raised to
nearly 8 times the BB, so I folded. So did the original
raiser, so he wasn’t min-raising AA. 🙂

Haven’t played a single hand in a while, so I’m drifting
downward in position, but not that much in chips…

788 left, in 268th

Made it to the first break! 🙂

699 left, in 356th (due to losing my blinds for 2 rounds)
594 left, in 370th (picked up the blinds twice)
474 left, in 340th

Made it to the second break! 🙂

Blinds are about to be a meaningful percentage of my stack,
so (unfortunately), I’m likely going to need to get out of
my normal comfort zone in terms of hand selection. Oh well,
luck be with me tonight! 🙂

After the break, picked up the blinds twice, and lost both
of my blinds twice, so I’m even on chips, but some other
people dropped out…

384 left, in 317th
289 left, in 275th (obviously, not too good)

This is just because others are passing me by. I still have
nearly all of my starting chips, but the average is more
than 3 times that, and the leaders have 10 times the chips
that I have. OUCH…

A desperate move is about to come, shortly, one way or
another. Still hoping to catch lucky at just the right
time. How’s that for skill in poker??? 😉

Just about out…

236 left, I’m in last place… 🙁

Finished in 228th. Never got it going tonight, even though I
“lasted” deep into the tourney…

Poker and Charity, a Great Combo

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We have really great friends (I’ve mentioned them a few times in past blogs) that live in Northern New Jersey, about 30 minutes from our house, across the Hudson River.

Both the husband and wife are very dedicated volunteers for the town’s ambulance service. They spend most of their spare time either on call, or working on the ambulance, etc. They studied real hard for a long time in order to be the best that they can be at this, and we’re extremely proud of how they give back to their community and make a real difference in the lives of their neighbors!

Two years ago, the ambulance corps started holding Texas Hold’Em Poker Tournaments as a way to raise funds. Our friends know that I’m a poker nut, and invited me to the first one. Of course, being the giving kind of person that I am, I had to accept. 😉

The tourney is held at the local American Legion building, and while completely loose and fun (with great deli food served as well), it’s also run reasonably professionally, and is an all-around blast. The one quirk is that they use an unusual (in fact, I’ve never heard of it before or after other than here) method of determining the final table.

The norm is that when there are 10 players (or how ever many a particular final table holds) left, that’s your final table. This tourney consolidates tables like all others, but only until there are five tables left. When that happens, each table plays until there are only two players left, and those two players have made the final table. If you make it, you wait until all of the rest of the tables whittle their way down to two, at which point the final table is seated.

This is unusual, because you can have one chip left with three people at your table, and if the other two go all-in, and the bigger stack wins, you are in the final table. That could happen, even while the other four tables are still full! I’ve contrived the above example a bit, but you get the point, it’s not necessarily fair, and definitely colors the strategy that one should use to make the final table. Since all players who make the final table get paid, it’s worth paying attention to this fact.

So, my first time out, I made it to the final five tables, and then made it to the final three at my table, at a point when there were only two tables left, with three players each. I was doing OK in terms of chip count, but was in third. I was the big blind, when I was dealt J3o. The button folded, and the small blind just called. The flop came J62 rainbow. Small blind checked, and I bet, he called. Turn brought a 9. Small blind checked, and I went all-in. He called. He had J6o, so he flopped two pair. I was drawing nearly dead. Only a 9 on the river would have given me a split, with no possibility of a win. No 9, and I was out, in 12th. So, I missed the money by two players.

In any event, I had a complete blast, and was looking forward to the next time around. That came a year later. This time, I again made it to the final five tables, and to the final three players at my table. This time, we were the last table left, so I was either making the final table, or I would finish in 11th, one better than last time, but out of the money again.

I was dealt JJ in the big blind. The small blind just called. I went all-in. He had me covered, but just barely, so if I won, I would be virtually guaranteed to make the final table. He had T7o. One of the stupidest calls in the history of poker, but hey, he was entitled to make that call. Flop came 256 rainbow, so I was crushing him. (Pre-flop, I was an 85% favorite to win. After the flop, I improved to a 93.6% favorite!)

The turn brought a 10. Now he had five outs (the remaining two 10’s, and the remaining three sevens). That dropped me to an 88.6% favorite. Of course, the river brought one of the two 10’s, and I was out, in eleventh! Ouch.

Again though, I had a blast. The next tourney was held six months later rather than a year later. Unfortunately, we had an unchangeable trip scheduled to Zope then, so I missed it.

Last night they held the fourth incarnation, and I was able to attend again. Before getting into some of the details, I need to digress for a minute. What? Hadar digress and be wordier than necessary to tell a simple tale? Please, say it ain’t so! Sorry, deal with it! 🙂

Back to the first night, early on, people were pointing to a guy in a green baseball cap, with reddish hair and a beard, and whispering that he was a semi-pro poker player. He was the guy who knocked me out when I had the J3 and he had the J6 from the above story. Indeed, he went on to win the tournament that night.

When I played in the second one, I didn’t end up at his table, but again, he made the final table, and I can’t recall for sure (because I left after I got knocked out), but I believe that my friends said he won again!

I missed the third one, but I think he made the final table again, not sure whether he won or not, but I’m reasonably sure he won at least two of the three, and definitely made the final table all three times. I only played with him that one time, but he’s definitely good. He mixes up his styles very well, so he’s extremely hard to read, and he’s generally very quiet at the table, generally playing very professionally.

You can start off with a little patience in these tourneys and try to get a sense of the playing styles at your table, but you can’t be patient for long. The tournament structure is very much the equivalent of a Turbo tournament online, in that the blinds escalate rapidly and dramatically. If they didn’t, people wouldn’t get out until the next day, which isn’t the purpose of a fund-raising event.

I started off slowly, but quickly got a read on the others, most of whom completely overplayed every single pair. Two people built up reasonably big stacks quickly at our table, while I hovered around even. The last hand before the break saw all but one player limp in to my big blind. I had TT and I raised to four times the big blind. Given how tight I had been playing, everyone folded, which was a great way to end the first session, and I was up 1/3 from my original chip count.

A few hands into the second session, I caught AA in the big blind. There were three limpers. Again I raised. This time, the original chip leader (who overplayed his pairs) called. The flop came 27J rainbow. By this time, he had frittered away his big chip lead, and I had more chips than him. I put him all-in, and he hesitated, but he had to call given the pot odds. He had AT, so I was crushing him. Of course, to spice it up, the turn brought a 10, so he could have caught a miracle 10 on the river to cripple me. He didn’t, and I had a very nice stack, and knocked out a player.

I’ll spare you the (exciting) details of a few more cool hands, but I ended up easily cruising to the final table this time. Of course, given the format, I had to wait over a half hour after making it, until the other tables finished.

We started with 3,500 in chips. I went to the final table with exactly 30,000 in chips. Sure enough, green cap guy was there again. He was seated immediately to my right, which was as good as I could have hoped for. He had roughly 50,000 chips. I was in the top four for sure, but perhaps even second, not really sure.

Since all but two players were unknown to me (green cap guy, and the one guy who was at my table when we both made it to the final table), I decided to start off very conservatively. As an example, I unhesitatingly folded KTc UTG. One guy played very aggressively on five of the first six hands, and won them all. It’s remotely possible that he had the goods each time, but more likely, he read that aggression works, and it certainly seemed to. The problem with over-aggression is that you only need to be wrong once, unless you have a massive chip lead.

After building his stack to easily second place (behind green cap guy, henceforth GCG), he got tangled in a hand with GCG. GCG limped, and Mr. Aggression raised. GCG thought for a minute, then moved all-in. Mr. Aggression called without hesitation, which given his hand, was a little surprising. When they turned over the cards, GCG had KK and Mr. Aggression had AT. Wow, all-in pre-flop against the chip leader, when you are calling, not betting, with AT. Clearly, he’s not a pro.

The K’s held up, and he was out, and GCG had a massive chip lead.

When we got down to three players, I was in second, but not by much over number three. I made one horrible mistake, pretty early on. I was in the small blind, with A6d. I limped (GCG limped on the button right before me.) The big blind raised to three times the BB. GCG folded, and I called. The flop brought 257 rainbow, and we both checked. The turn brought an A. I checked, and he went all-in. Of course, I knew with 100% certainty that I should fold, that he had a better A, or flopped a set, or the A gave him two pair, etc.

But, after thinking for too short a time, I decided that everything about his style and my previous tightness, could have also led him to bluff on the A, given that I limped and he raised pre-flop. So, I decided to try and take him out, and I called. Of course, he had AJ, and was crushing me. Ironically, the river was the remaining A, so I had trip A’s, and it wasn’t good enough. I was now completely crippled, with 6,000 chips left, and the blinds at 2,000 and 4,000.

I split the next hand with GCG so I had 9,000 chips when I became the big blind. I was dealt AQ and the other guy raised me, and I called. He had A9, and I won. Now I had 20,000 chips. The next hand I raised, and he re-raised all-in and I called. I had 22, and he had AQ. My deuces held up, and I had 44,000 chips. Sweet!

A few hands later, he went all-in on a complete bluff against CGC, who flopped three fours and slow played them. Now there were just two of us. GCG had a massive lead on me, but I doubled up on my first hand, giving me a fighting chance.

The tournament director, who dealt every hand at the final table, asked us if we wanted to split first and second place evenly (it was 12:45am by then, and we started at 7:45pm!). I told GCG that I would happily do whatever he wanted, because I felt it would be unfair given his chip lead for me to insist on the deal. He seemed to waver, but in the end, decided he’d like to play. I completely respect his decision!

About five hands later, I had T6c in the BB and he limped in. Flop came 346. He checked, I bet, he called. I should have immediately realized he had something, because he loves to slow play big hands. But, it was late, and I had top pair, etc… The turn was a 2, which was dangerous, because if he had a 5, I was drawing nearly dead (the best I could hope for would be a tie). He checked, and like a complete idiot, I went all-in instead of checking as well.

He insta-called. Not only did he have a 5, he had a 7 as well, so he flopped the nut straight, and I was drawing 100% dead on the turn. Tourney over, and the better player definitely won. He’s now won three out of four, or four out of four, so while he caught some lucky hands (like flopping the straight when I flopped top pair), he maximizes his opportunities, regardless of any luck!

We each put up $85. $35 of that went to the ambulance corps, and $50 was put in the prize pool (a little too generous on the part of the ambulance corps, if you ask me). In the past, they have averaged between 80-100 players, but the weather last night was awful, and a number of people bailed at the last minute (wimps!), so there were only 50 players.

First prize was $1,000, and second prize was $600. I was (obviously!) thrilled with the $600. Lois immediately asked me if I wanted to contribute back $100 to the corps, which I was thinking of doing exactly at the same moment (I told you, we are way too much alike!). We donated a $100 bill back, which they graciously tried to decline. We insisted, they relented, and all of us felt better about it!

Afterwards, Lois chatted briefly with GCG, whose name is Darren (sp?). He’s extremely nice. While he’s quiet at the table, he doesn’t have any of the bad boy persona that some others try to put on at the table. He’s a true champion and I have enormous respect for his game as well as his results!

Doing good, while having fun. It doesn’t get much better than that! 🙂

October 2007 Poker Update

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October was not a good month economically. That said, I had an excellent month of winning qualifiers, including three in one week to the weekly big tourney, so it wasn’t all bad. I only got to use one in October, as we’ve been much busier on weekends than usual (if you read my non-poker posts, then you already know!). I won’t be playing this Sunday either, as it’s Girlyman night! 🙂

I thought I played reasonably well this month, with a few extremely notable exceptions (meaning, I got frustrated, and took some shots that were ill-advised). The majority of my losses came in the qualifier entries, meaning, even if I won the qualifier, the entire entry fee ends up counting as a loss.

My bottom line this month was down $239.89. Since the three seats that I won in the one week were worth $645, and I won other qualifiers (for roughly another $88), I far outstripped my entry fees, but my account is still down on the cash front.

Don’t cry for me (yet), as my account is still extremely healthy, and in the beginning of the month, actually hit an all-time high.

Not much else to report, other than that I haven’t played at all this week, which is marginally shocking. I’ve had a number of other things that I wanted to take care of, and while I could have snuck in a game or two, I didn’t want to keep being distracted by having to pay attention to the poker table, so I didn’t launch the software at all this week!

Dumb Play in Weekly Poker Tourney

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Well, the notes say it all…


896 entrants, top 90 paid

I had some time to play in qualifiers this week. I won three
seats, so in addition to playing in this one, I have two
additional entries that I can use on any future Sunday. In
addition, I also came in the money in two other qualifiers,
and made a profit on my attempt to win more seats. All in
all, a very good qualifier week!

4 more entrants, and we would have paid top 100. We’ll have
to see whether that ends up being a factor for me or not…

Started off reasonably well. Was 43rd early on, but without
playing any hands, quickly drifted down to 141st. No biggie,
still happy with my position at this point…

800 left, in 276th
787 left, in 144th
712 left, in 191st

Made it to the first break! 🙂

On two hands, I chose not to chase. I know with 100%
certainty that it was the “correct decision”. In both cases,
I would have caught the correct river card, and landed a
mountain of chips. Still, I know I was correct.

What bugs me isn’t that I don’t chase ridiculous hands. My
problem is that when complete idiots chase against me, they
hit more often than the odds would predict. Of course, as
you see from the above paragraph, I too would have hit both

Oh well, gotta play the way I play, and take the results as
they fall…

586 left, in 237th

I stink. I raised UTG with 99 to 700. One guy reraised me to
1900. I knew he had AA (though, of course, he could have had
AK, etc.) Anyway, if I folded, I would have had 2400 chips
left, and been the big blind next hand, which would have
meant being in the high 300’s with 460 left. Of course, that
would have been the smart thing to do anyway.

So, instead, I decide to gamble. I reraised all-in, and of
course, he had the AA, and I lost (as I deserved to).

I finished 461, and I have no one to blame tonight but me,
which is also preferable to blaming horrid luck, etc…

Disappointing Result in Sunday Poker Tourney

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Nothing more to say other than my notes taken during tonight’s big tourney…


929 entrants, top 100 paid

Won my entry on Friday.

Poor start. I had J2o in the big blind on the first hand.
Flop came 5JK rainbow. Small blind and I were the only two
in the hand. He bet, I called. He checked when a 9 came on
the turn, bringing two diamonds. I over-bet the pot, he
thought, and called. Then another K hit, but also brought
the third diamond. He made a pot-sized bet, and my J with
lousy kicker faded quickly. I folded. Not down too much, but
not an ideal start either…

Won three small hands, and at least I’m above my starting
chips now, but not by much. Better than it was though. 🙂

And now I lost one (I had 99 vs KJo and a K hit the flop),
so I’m down a drop again…

And now won one, so I’m up a drop again.

And now down a drop. Too much see-saw…

850 left, in 362nd

Just got killed by an idiot chasing a horrible hand, when I
had KK. He caught a baby straight on the river, when he was
drawing next to dead all the way through. ARGH!

Now I’m in deep trouble. This will be a short night…

803 left, in 789th

Whew. Won an all-in with AKo vs ATc. Still low, but much
better than before…

753 left, in 655th

Made it to the first break, unexpectedly! 🙂

736 left, in 645th
692 left, in 570th
590 left, in 415th (scratching and clawing)
499 left, in 415th (still bouncing up and down)


I’m down to 1100 chips. One guy raises to 400 (blinds are
100-200). I go all-in with 99. He calls. He has A5o. Flop
comes 9TK, so I flop a set! Turn is a Q. Of course, the
river brings a J and, of course, the miracle “runner runner”
straight. That’s the second incredibly lucky river that
someone caught on me tonight, and it cost me the tournament
the second time.

I finished 445th. Simply unreal…

Finally Back on Track in Big Poker Tourney

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I’ve had a bit of a dry spell in the big one, including some very near cashes. Tonight felt like it was going to be another one of just missing the money, barely.

Thankfully, this one has a happier ending (no surprise, given the title, right?). 😉

Here is a log of my notes, nothing else needs to be added.


937 entrants, top 100 paid

<sarcasm>Great start!</sarcasm>

My best hand in the first 10 has been K6. I have had 2-3o
twice, 2-5o twice, 4-8o, etc. Only down 25 chips, so it’s
not a big deal yet…

Just called a small raise from the big blind with A9o (my
best hand by far!). Flop was bad, so I folded to the raise.
He showed, and had KK. Next hand he raises again, I folded my
A6o in the small blind. He shows AA. Still only down 55 chips, so nothing real to report yet.

880 left, in 358th
863 left, in 253rd

Wow, some people are amazingly stupid. Aggression is one
thing, and in general, very powerful. That said, it can
easily cross the line into complete stupidity, and I just
watched someone cross that line multiple times, after he had
a reasonable stack. I guess he thought his early luck had to
hold up, no matter what. He’s now gone…

Made it past the first break 🙂

687 left, in 364th
505 left, in 363rd
478 left, in 154th
409 left, in 150th

Made it past the second break 🙂

321 left, in 200th

Starting to slide, just because of the blinds. Haven’t
played a single hand in a while, so it’s not that I’m
“losing” any hands. This can’t last long, one way or

233 left, in 212th
203 left, in 132nd
193 left, in 149th
164 left, in 149th
159 left, in 140th

Made it past the third break 🙂

143 left, in 134th
137 left, in 134th
129 left, in 117th
123 left, in 115th
120 left, in 115th
117 left, in 114th
114 left, in 99th

I won with ATs against KK. A came on the turn, thankfully.
The very next hand, I had AK in early position. I folded.
The big blind went all-in with A9o. Thank goodness I folded,
as the flop came A9X. Whew.

113 left, in 106th (because of the blinds and antes)
108 left, in 102nd (going to be very close!)

All-in with ATh. We’ll see if anyone calls…
NOPE! Thank goodness! 🙂

106 left, in 91st
105 left, in 97th
104 left, in 96th
103 left, in 94th
102 left, in 94th
101 left, in 94th


MADE IT!!! It’s been a long while since I’ve cashed in the
Big One. Whew! Still short stacked, but I can relax now…

99 left, in 91st
91 left, in 89th
86 left, in 82nd
84 left, in 80th

Moved up one more level in the money!

Now out, in 79th!

Won my entry last Saturday. Got back $400 tonight. Sweet!

September 2007 Poker Update

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So, the streak had to end at some point, and it turns out, that September 2007 was that time. No complaints (at least not that I’m willing to voice publicly). 😉

At one point during the month, I quoted an ancient line to Lois: “If I didn’t have bad luck, I would have no luck at all!”. Seriously, I can’t even count the number of bad river beats I took this month. Like I said previously, that’s actually a good thing. If you get your money in with the best of it, and someone draws out, they are lucky, but playing incorrectly (most of the time).

All that said, it was hardly a horrible month, so my play continues to be relatively successful. Grand total for the month is down $130.69. Nothing earth shaking, and hardly a meaningful percentage of my current account balance. In other words, it isn’t affecting my play in the least, which is a good thing.

In fact, while the “cash” is down, I have a $215 credit toward any future tournament (which I’ll likely use to play in the weekly big one this coming Sunday), so I am actually up this month, though unless I cash in that tournament, I will never see that phantom profit.

Speaking of which, I’ve done well in qualifiers lately. I won an entry to the big one yesterday on Friday. Then on Saturday, I won another entry (which is the $215 credit I mention above). I have also won a bunch of seats into the nightly 7pm Omaha Hi-Lo that I like so much.

Finishing up, I played in the big one last night. I couldn’t get people to play with me when I had big hands, until one did, and he got very lucky on me. I’ll conclude with my notes from the tourney, but you can skip them if you don’t care, since I have nothing else to add after them…


910 entrants, top 100 paid

Crazy start. First hand, I’m dealt KK under the gun (UTG). A
“pot” raise, given that the blinds are just 5-10, would only
be 35 chips, with 9 people to act behind me! So, I raise to
a whopping 55. Everyone folds, and I’m ahead 15 chips.

I then fold every hand (10 in a row), and I’m back to even
with 2500 chips. Then, I’m UTG again, and I get AA. Now, I
might be willing to raise less, but I think it might look
smelly, so I raise to 55 again. Again, everyone folds, so
I’m up 15 chips again. Then I fold the two times I’m in the
blinds, so I’m back to even.

866 left, in 386th
857 left, in 278th (finally won a hand with JJ)
795 left, in 335th

Made it to the first break 😉

688 left, in 353rd (won another hand with JJ)
633 left, in 315th

Again, KK UTG. Raise, everyone folds…

597 left, in 295th

TT UTG. Raise, everyone folds. This one, I’m happy about 🙂

QQ in middle position. Raise, everyone folds. Not happy
about that, but I have a feeling that when I’m finally
called on one of these, I will be beat, so I’m not going to
complain. At least the blinds are rising, and I’m winning a
drop more with these hands than in the beginning…

544 left, in 259th

Well, I was 100% correct. I raise with QQ, I get an all-in
to my immediate left. I have more chips than him, so I’m not
at risk. Everyone folds, I call. He has 77, so I’m crushing
him. A 7 comes on the flop, so I’m way behind. However, to
tease me, 2 clubs come on the flop, and I have the Q of
clubs. Then a club comes on the turn, so now a club on the
river, and I would win. No club, and I have only 1400 chips

Next hand, I am the big blind. I have K6 of clubs. One guy
raises. I realize he has a better hand, but I’ve watched
people in this type of position before, and the ones that
bet like idiots, win their fair share, and then I’d be right
back in it. Otherwise, I’d be out, and that would be fine

So, I pushed all-in. He called. He had AJo. I wasn’t
crushed, but was behind. An A came on the flop (what a
surprise), so I am out in 479th.

None of the people that played poorly at my table (but had a lot of chips!) made the money. In other words, I didn’t underestimate their abilities, I just got unlucky…