Posts Tagged ‘Poker Tournaments’

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Final 2018 WSOP Schedule

May 21, 2018

Here’s a link to my final 2018 World Series of Poker schedule. I’ll be targeting non-NL events all around Vegas. Events highlighted in green are the ones I’m 100% to play unless a deep run in something else prevents me from doing so.

Vegas Tourney Schedule

I am not selling action for anything except possibly the Main Event. I will know in the next week or so if that’s something I’ll need to do or not.

I can’t wait!

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Friday Frenzy: 15/30 LHE & Rattlesnake Trophy Hunting! (LIVE BLOG)

May 11, 2018

Since I last posted on Tuesday, something big happened: I finally won an event in a Global Poker series. If you’ve been following along here, you probably know I’ve had two runner-up finishes in the Rattlesnake Open already and I also took second in an event during January’s Grizzly Games as well. Needless to say, even though the money is nice, finishing in second is super frustrating – especially when things like oversized trophies and Global swag is on the line!

My final opponent in this tournament is super accomplished (based on his Sharkscope stats) on Global, but it didn’t take me long to see that I had a massive advantage over him in heads up play. He was playing very straight forward and letting me get away with murder, like getting folds in spots where it’s blatantly obvious that my range is weak and he seemed to almost never bluff. It’s pretty hard to win heads up if you are relying on having the best hand every pot. With a decent chip lead, I thought I was going to have to get very unlucky to let this one slip away… and then I did. I think I had about a 2 to 1 chiplead when we got all the chips in preflop with my AT vs his A2 and he spiked a deuce that held up and suddenly I had a 2 to 1 disadvantage. My wife was already asleep and my brother-in-law that lives with us was also asleep and I have to admit I was struggling to contain my volume after losing that hand.

Still, I recognized that I was a favorite and I wasn’t too worried about things, but I also knew that another unlucky all in confrontation would result in yet another second place finish. I could really feel the pressure I was putting on myself. I have to admit that shipping one of these events was pretty damn important to me. I ended up regaining the chip lead through pure exploitative poker and eventually got him all in with another dominated ace and managed to hold on this time for the win! Much like when I lost the chip lead, I was struggling to contain my volume and excitement as I was quietly celebrating my win all by myself. I did it. Finally!

My first Global Poker trophy! I’ll post a pic when I get this thing.

Not only did I finally ship a trophy event, but I finally had success in one of their bigger buy ins and the actual win was almost triple my previous high on Global. This also put my online bankroll north of $6k and gets me out of the $3-$3.5k range I seem to get stuck in before falling back down. I didn’t set out to do a bankroll challenge or anything, but it’s worth noting that I have only deposited $300 on Global. I feel totally comfortable putting money on there now, but initially I was pretty skeptical about depositing any serious money online and now I’m hoping I’ll never have to.

This win also boosted me back into the Player of the Series race. After playing only one of the three events on Tuesday, I had dropped all the way down to 41st. Apparently you get 10 points for every tournament that you play, so the 11 events I’ve missed so far was having a dramatic affect on my place in the standings. Prior to Wednesday’s win, the 110 points I would have from playing those 11 tournaments was the difference between 41st place in the PotS race and being in the top 8. Pretty sick. After managing one measly min-cash on the day of the series I’ve been looking forward to the most (Limit Hold’em Day), I now sit in 10th place on the leaderboard. Now missing 11 tournaments is the difference between 10th and… 1st. Assuming I cashed zero times in the 11 additional tournaments (unlikely), I would currently have a 20 point lead over second place. Ugh. Who needs an extra $5000 I guess?

My wife still doesn’t seem to embracing the opportunity here. We are heading to her parents house for Mother’s Day tomorrow and then my parents house for Mother’s Day on Tuesday and then next Saturday we are apparently attending a wedding. As has been noted, missing tournaments has been detrimental and Saturdays and Sundays are especially important as there are six events each day. I basically have the green light to play tomorrow – either by visiting for an hour in between the day and night events or by playing on the iPad while I’m there – but I’m not sure how I’ll manage Tuesday and there’s no way I can play next Saturday unless she shows mercy on my soul and doesn’t make me go to a wedding for two people I don’t even know. I suppose if I fall out of contention by then it won’t matter, but if I’m in the thick of it, those last two days are going to be super critical. I can’t really blame her though, especially since I’m going to be gone for six weeks for the World Series of Poker, but I’m right there! I can ship this thing!

Something else interesting has happened because of my recent win. I’ve been contacted by both a Global Poker representative for inclusion in their upcoming press release and by PokerNews. I’m still waiting for questions from PokerNews, so not exactly sure what that will entail, but seems like I’m going to be getting some publicity in the near future. The PokerNews editor mentioned reading my blog, so hopefully they will include a link in their write up and if I happen to get any new readers please feel free to subscribe and follow along!

I am definitely NOT a fan of multi-tabling on my iPad while playing live poker, but I kind of have to do it. My live play volume has been waaaaay down this month – mostly because I’ve been staying home to play online. Even with the iPad multi-tabling, I’m still only on pace for just over 80 hours of live play for the month of May. That’s roughly half my normal volume. Kind of inexcusable. The $3500 cash was really nice and the chance at a $5k package is appealing, but the kind of money I can make in these online tournaments pales to what I make playing live poker.

So I will be heading to Palace shortly and hoping that the 15/30 game gets off the ground if it hasn’t already (I haven’t checked for a bit). Unfortunately tonight’s Rattlensnake events are all 4-max tournaments, so it is going to be really challenging to play live while playing 4-max on my iPad, but I did manage a 2nd place finish doing exactly that last week.

Expect this blog to be live for a little over an hour or so before I get involved in the tournaments, then I will probably go mostly quiet for a few hours, and then back to regular updates when I’m back to playing live only.

See you in an hour!

4:25 PM: Sitting down in 8/16 and should get an hour worth of updates in before online poker takes over.

I was hoping to play 15/30 all night but the game looks a ways off. There are 8 names on the list but one of them (the Gnat) is MIA and there are multiple potential flakers. Looks like I’ll be playing 8/16 for a while, which is probably for the best considering the distraction level I’m about to experience.

8/16 lineup: The Queen, FBI Guy, Grumpy (yay!) and some other random I’m not overly familiar with.

4:53 PM: Wonderful start. Admittedly playing a little sloppy so far and then I get to add this gem to torment: two limpers, I limp T8ss, someone raises, some blinds call, FBI Guy comes through with the limp-raise and six of us see the flop for three bets. It’s pretty nice! J93 with two spades and one heart. FBI Guy checks and I start the fireworks as the original PFR helps me get it capped with five of us still in. Turn is gin: 7 of hearts! We have the nuts. I go ahead and lead because the PFR screams of draws that check the turn and three players call me. River is a 2 of hearts and now the PFR raises me. Jx of hearts is my primary candidate to be losing to but instead this guy was capping the J9x two spade flop with four opponents holding the KThh. AS YOU SHOULD.

I have spotted them a rack of blue already.

👏🏻👏🏻

5:10 PM: The Man is trying to start 15/30 super short-handed and as appealing as it is to play 3-handed with The Gnat, it’s going to be tough enough 3-tabling 4-max while playing in a full live game. That’s a pass from me for now.

5:15 PM: Here’s something that annoys me:

What the hell am I supposed to do with that chicken? Cut it up myself? Eat it like a Neanderthal? Seems like I shouldn’t have to ask the kitchen to cut my chicken in a way that makes sense for a salad.

5:25 PM: Sigh. They are starting 15/30 right as my tournaments are about to start and there are only four players that have bought chips so far. Spectacular.

This should be… interesting.

Finish 8/16 -$191.

5:29 PM: Part-Time, The Gnat and some random are in the game… and now The Man is sitting down to make it 5-handed while he’s working… because beating up on the floor man at 15/30 is what I want to do. 🤦🏻‍♂️

5:57 PM: The Global tourneys all have two rebuys and one add on. I have been playing splashy in the Low, running my stack all the way down to 270 from 3k starting before building it back up 1800 and getting stacked when my AA ran into the mighty 74 blind defend.

On the bright side, I’m back up to 3k stack.

6:20 PM: On bullet #2 of the $22 Medium. I open 66 and guy with 30 bigs left jams on me. It’s a rebuy so I’m willing to gamble here. I somehow hold against his T2o.

He reloads and then stuffs 100 bigs on the button. I have 77 in the small blind and even though I’m flipping most of the time I can’t resist the gamble. It’s not a flop – I have his Q7 crushed. But he spikes a Queen on the turn and now I have 30 bigs.

A few hands later, he opens on button and I try to induce by making a small raise. He jams, I snap call, and his 44 holds to bust me.

And then they move that player that player the next hand… only to replace him two hands later!

No justice!

6:38 PM: Final bullet of Medium, as my 30 big blind reshove with AQ can’t shake AJdd and he makes a flush to bust me.

6:51 PM: And QQ < KT to bust the Medium. Sometimes you just run awesome.

I have about 30 bigs in the Low and same in the High.

7:03 PM: And out of the Low. 12 big button jam with A2ss loses to 55.

Then I get 16 bigs in pre with JTdd vs TT, flop a jack and lose to the one-outer on the river in the High.

Second bullet there.

And now my live game waits for me to bust two tournaments before going on pause. We are 5-handed… one player is felted… and two others are on break.

😴😴😴

7:08 PM: Weird hand against The Gnat. Some limps in front of me, I raise KJo on the button, and then The Gnat check-raises and caps on J95. He checks to me on a blank turn and I’m wary, so I check back. River is another blank and he checks again so obviously I have to to bet now and he check-calls mewith… AJ!

Unknown opens, I 3-bet 66 on button and he caps out of position. I call down on Q7752 and he shows me 22.

What.

7:35 PM: On break in the High and I added on 3000 chips for $50 to my 7000 stack. Meh. Not great value but whatever.

I just flopped sets in back-to-back huge pots in the live game. I’m crushing it but the game is on fumes.

7:51 PM: The Gnat just went runner-runner flush on me, so he’s obviously singing now.

Gosh dang, he’s so good!

7:57 PM: And I’m out of the High. Solid 0-3 showing tonight. 3-tabling 4-max NL while playing 5-max live poker is haaaard.

I basically never input my own bet. Just bet half pot, pot, or whatever preset sizings there are.

Plus I do cool things like this:

Yes, that’s me timed out and folded with the nuts.

👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻

My wife is here now and we are about to have dinner and then time to focus up on this live game.

8:38 PM: Well I was up $1500 in the 15/30 game but it’s come crumbling down quickly.

First I lost with AK on QTxK9. Then I folded JJ on A77xK. Then I had TT vs QcJc on T98cc and never improved. And just now I bet the K65 flop, Gnat raises all in to $20, big blind calls, and I call because that’s the only thing I can do. The 6 pairs on the turn and the big blind fires the first $60 Overs bet of the evening. I’m perplexed but call. River 9, same action, and he rolls K9.

Solid -$700 swing in one orbit.

10:13 PM: We have gone card dead, folks. I did pick up the QQ once and got out flopped by KT and then I missed the nut flush draw in a 3-bet pot, but those have been my only hands of note. After turning the faucet on for an orbit, my downswing has becomemore of a slow drip.

10:17 PM: And immediately after posting that last update, I 3-bet KK and it goes cap and cold call behind me. Four of us see the T33 two hearts flop and I get it capped with the preflop capper. One player calls two bets but winds up folding so we are in Overs for the turn action. I’m running kind of bad at the moment so leading out for $60 feels almost spewy but I’m only losing to TT and AA, so bombs away! I’m quite relieved to see him just call. The river is the queen of hearts and now we are only beating JJ. So I check and he checks behind with the one hand we still beat.

10:57 PM: The Tick, Gnat, and Flea are all in the building and I left my insect repellent at home.

11:14 PM: Kung Fu Panda in the game! Threatening to buy in for less than $400…

👀👀

12:22 PM: Kung Fu Panda and Snowflake are sitting next to me totally distracting me. I am crushing though. These guys keep commenting on how I win every pot I play, I always have it, they give me too much action, etc.

One big connection I have KJdd in a 3-bet pot and then get the QT3dd flop with Overs in play. Bink the flush on the turn and get six bigbets from my opponent.

Here’s Kung Fu Panda’s stack:

So you can see why he’s jealous.

1:57 AM: Snowflake is now in the game and he’s possibly wasted and telling everyone he’s going to 3-bet me every hand. I have a feeling my variance is about to get tumultuous.

The Leak is also playing in this game for some reason.

The Gnat felted. The Flea is in.

2:06 PM: This just happened: Snowflake is being so annoying that The Flea just asked for a seat change to move away from him.

The fucking FLEA wants to move because someone is annoying HIM!

3:15 AM: Session is over. Sorry for the lack of content tonight. Snowflake was sitting behind me and Kung Fu Panda and talking to us for hours before he got in the game and writing about hands became very hard to do.

It was a good, smooth session though. Very minor hiccups for the last several hours as I cruised to a +$2209 finish.

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A Surprise Live Blog! 5/8/18

May 8, 2018

I didn’t even know I was going to play live poker today but here I am, at Palace before 1 PM.

12:49 PM: Pretty rare I get to the casino this early these days and because of the early arrival I’m starting a pretty lame 8/16 game.

Starting lineup: The Leak, The Queen, a Palace dealer, an old Kitsap friend, a lawyer that saved me $10,000, and maybe two people I truly want to win money from.

Blah.

I thought today was the first day of the weekly Palace freeroll but it’s actually next week and I wouldn’t have qualified anyway.

Why? Because I saw the homey Kendrick on Saturday and then Shohei Ohtani keep the Mariners at bay on Sunday.

And here are the famous (infamous?) Safeco Field grasshoppers:

We didn’t buy them ourselves but someone in our section did and was passing them around to the whole crowd. A nice way to try something wild without spending money on it and wasting them when we realized they are as unappetizing as they look.

1:14 PM: Pretty great start! One limper, I complete A2cc, and The Leak checks her big blind. Flop is 543 with two spades and a diamond. I bet and my wife flats. Turn is the jack of diamonds and now she jacks me up. I call because I sort of enjoy quasi-slowrolling my wife when I know I have her crushed. For instance, when she pops the turn with J8 of spades or something and I get out of my seat at showdown to take a close look at it before rolling over my wheel and looking at her like 👀.

Well, I call her turn raise and then check-call again on king of diamonds river and there is no slow roll opportunity here as she rolls over the A5 of diamonds for the nut flush. 🤦🏻‍♂️

A few hands later, there’s some limpers, the Kitsap player raises cutoff, I 3-bet with KQ and four of us see the flop. It’s decent, not great: QTT two spades. Two players check-call flop. Turn is jack of hearts, also not the greatest but I continue betting and they both call again. River is the 3 of hearts, completing a backdoor flush draw and the second caller leads out for his final $5. Easy call, but he rolls over the 95hh – you know, the kind of hand you can limp with and then call three bets with pre before peeling the QTT flop.

Solid.

Then I make a very loose play by cold-calling a raise and call with 54ss from the cutoff, then The Leak 3-bets from the button and we all call. Flop is KT2, all spades, and the first cold-caller leads out, I raise, and the other two fold. He calls. Turn 2: he check-calls. River King: he leads, I bang my head against a wall and then call. AK good.

Down less than $80 somehow though.

1:33 PM: Back to Kendrick. I saw him at the Tacoma Dome and the experience was underwhelming, so I decided to splurge this time and got some decent tickets. The experience was infinitely better. Not only were the performers about thirty feet away but the sound at the White River Ampitheater was a million times better than the Tacoma Dome – you could actually hear everything the artists were saying.

Anyways, while this was the TDE Championship Tour, artists like Ab Soul, Lance Skiiwalker, SiR, and Jay Rock had pretty short sets. This was definitely a ScHoolboy Q, SZA, and Kendrick show.

Probably the biggest takeaway from this show, for me, was finally appreciating how good SZA’s last album is. She basically has hits from start to finish.

Which is how every Kendrick album sounds, but you don’t need me tell you that.

My other takeaway is that I might not ever see another show at the Tacoma Dome. This experience was just so much better…

…until we had to leave. Holy shit. What a brutal experience. We got in our car around 11:15 PM and didn’t move more than five feet from our parking spot until 1:10 AM. Almost two hours of just sitting there wondering how it is possible that not one single car in sight is moving.

1:49 PM: And the other reason I haven’t been playing live as much this month? Because I’ve been trying to play as many Rattlesnake Open events as possible on Global Poker. I missed six events over the weekend and if it’s true that you get 10 points for every event you enter, then sitting those tournaments out are the difference between me being in 29th place (380 points) on the Player of the Series leaderboard and in a tie for 10th place (440 points). Plus, on average, I cash more than 1 in 6 times, so chances are I’d be squarely in the top ten if I didn’t miss any events.

Oh well. Guess I have to get there the hard way: by crushing. I’ve found it difficult to multitable on my iPad while playing live, but I somehow had my best Global cash ever while doing exactly that – in a 4-max format, no less!

Tonight’s events start at 5:30 and they are a turbo format with no rebuys, so they won’t distract me for too long, even if I go deep in some.

2:23 PM: Three limps and a small blind complete and I raise the big with QJdd. Flop is T82 with one diamond, I bet and three call. Turn is 3 of diamonds and while I don’t barrel all my draws, this is one that qualifies. My equity seems great: queens, jacks, nines, and diamonds all seem like winners. I’m also not worried about getting raised on this board texture very often and when it does happen, I don’t care too much. I bet, two call, and the small blind check-raises. Shrug. I call and one other player stays also. River is an offsuit 9 for the mega nuts. I raise and my straight beats the small blind’s set of deuces.

2:32 PM: The Queen and The Leak have moved to the main game and the Palace dealer has cashed out so this game is much more my speed now. Fleabag takes a seat. And I’m going to add two new nicknames: Crentist (because he’s a dentist – “The Office” reference) and the Kitsap player will be Wolverine because that’s what he’s always been.

2:38 PM: Strange hand where it’s obvious some people think I’m always leveling. Some limps, Wolverine raises, I 3-bet KK, and five of us see Q82 with two spades. I get check-called and multiple spots and the turn is as safe as it gets when it pairs the deuce. Wolverine decides this is a good time to check-raise me and I think for quite a bit about whether or not I want to raise. He could feasibly have AA or 2x but both are very unlikely and he’s really only repping QQ and 88. I have a pretty clear advantage against his range, so the real question is whether or not I want the other player in. I should probably jack it up but I just call and so does the third player. River is a red 7 and I call and Wolverine shows all the signs of being caught in a bluff so I table and he flashes me AK high before mucking.

3:36 PM: Or maybe this is why he thinks I’m always leveling. Wolverine opens button, I 3-bet small blind with K8ss and then c-bet A52 flop and he folds. I flash him my cards, not because I think I bluffed him but because I want him to know how light I know he is.

Global tourneys start in ~2 hours. Mariners start in 30 minutes. Red Sox-Yankees start in 30 minutes.

Let’s.Go.

3:48 PM: Groan. I had The Flea on massive tilt, all prepped for epic hemorrhaging but then I raise under the gun with AA, he’s one of the cold callers, and he raises and caps Q73 two spade flop. I’m ready to lead out on blank turns but it’s the 4 of spades, so I check-call down, and he gets the pleasure of showing me the T2 of spades and instant tilt relief. Ugh.

Sometimes a feel good pot will calm people down but there’s a chance he will continue to unnecessarily get involved in pots I open. It’s the Flea way.

Wolverine out. Taz and Bingo Man in..

4:46 PM: Moment of realization at the table: dude I don’t know sitting next to me is rocking a Mariners jersey and then fires up the Red Sox-Yankees game on MLB At Bat right before I do and we kind of look at each other like 🤔. I’ve been posting in 2+2 forums semi-regularly for years now and I immediately start thinking of some of the baseball lovers on that site and sure enough this dude is a regular in the MLB thread. Since he likes the name bighurt that will be his name here as well.

4:56 PM: Fleabag gets another ugly one from me. This time I open the KTdd and he flops two pair with 84 on 874dd. I get two bets in multiple ways on the flop and then bink the 7d on the turn and then let Flea show down his 8 when the river comes a third 7 to give him a full house.

The Gnat is in the game… sitting next to The Flea… so the douchebag levels are about to go through the roof.

I’m tempted to bring up the Muckleshoot tournament that Gnat said he final tabled (but maybe didn’t even play), but that might actually require me to interact with these jack offs.

5:02 PM: Gnat and Flea are talking about seeing The Gnat play poker on T.V. someday. I could make this shit up, but fortunately I don’t have to. The content writes itself.

Holy shit. The Flea just turned another flush against me and then when I check-call river he turns to The Gnat and says “good lay down,” while tipping the dealer before turning his hand over. Goodness, I hate him so much.

5:12 PM: Dang. The Gnat moved to the main game. He is replaced by Action Bronson though. 👍🏻

5:19 PM: Action Bronson immediately makes me feel the pain of his presence. The button straddles are on and I find myself defending the 75o and then putting in four bets on the 543hh flop. Board runs out 8h and 9h and Action shows the T2hh (not from the blind or the straddle).

Losing to flushes every hand. Losing with my flushes. Pretty cool.

5:37 PM: Good start to the Global Low: I 3-bet AK during the first level and the opener jams for a full starting stack. I call and lose to his K8o in a 160 big blind pot.

I didn’t even know it was a rebuy so early second bullet for me.

Oh it’s not a rebuy. There is one rebuy and one add on, which totally explains why he was willing to get 80 bigs in pre with K8o.

5:54 PM: Getting throttled in the live game now too. Action Bronson has drastically increased the volatility and so far it’s been nothing but pain for me. River a straight in a huge pot when he turned a boat. Then flop top top in another monster pot and lose to a 2-outer on the turn.

Sigh. Then I 3-bet AA in the Global-Low and get 30 bigs each in against KQ and lose to two pair. Down to 1.5 bigs now. I have 398 chips and I’m not doing the add on.

And my wife clearly wants me to come home so that’s what I’m going to do

GOOD SESSION.

6:10 PM: Won a big pot right before I left and finished at -$110 and lost two bullets in the Low. I didn’t really want to play today anyways so I’m at peace with leaving early.

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Muckleshoot $400 5th Sunday of the Month Tournament (Live Blog!)

April 29, 2018

I didn’t blog my session yesterday, but if you read my post on Friday, you know I didn’t get home until nearly 4 AM, so when I started getting texts around 10 AM that the 15/30 game was going short-handed, with players that had been playing all night, I wasn’t quite ready to make my return to the casino. Seriously, by noon, three different people had text me to tell me the 15/30 game was going short-handed. I have to say it’s pretty cool that people see something like that and feel the need to flash the Bat Signal in the sky.

I ended up taking my sweet time getting to the casino, running a lap around my block, updating my rosters on MLB The Show, playing a game, and drinking my coffee, but The Leak was REALLY taking her sweet time. I gave her a significant head start on getting ready and I still ended up sitting around twiddling my thumbs for nearly 45 minutes. It was one of her all-time greatest getting ready performances in our 6+ years of being together.

It was past 2 PM when we left the house and I knew the 15/30 game was currently three-handed and I knew that two of the players had been there since the night before and that one of them was The Gnat.

I made a bold prediction to my wife: I said that after playing for over half a day straight and all through the night, The Gnat would quit shortly after I sat down in the game. There are players that love the challenge of playing against me and there are players that really want no part of it (and, of course, the majority of the players don’t give any shits). I’m pretty good at sizing up which group people belong to and while almost everyone doesn’t mind playing with me in full games, it’s extremely common for people to abandon ship as the games get shorter. I could tell The Gnat was a ship-jumper. He puts on quite a bravado facade and when he’s sitting next to The Flea he has been extremely arrogant and condescending to a lot of players – especially me. But I know he doesn’t want any part of me. Not really.

He exceeded my expectations. After I bought in, he immediately took a break and never got dealt in another hand.

Then he surprised me. After walking around the casino and socializing for a half an hour, he came back to the table and racked up his chips and suddenly started talking to me like we are friends. He said he finally got even and had been playing all night long and straight up admitted to everyone at the table that he’s scared of me and said that I’m the best player he’s seen at Palace so far. Wow. It was quite the 180 from all the shit talking he had been doing previously. If you go back and read my blogs from the past couple weeks, while I didn’t give him the name of The Gnat yet, you can probably figure out when I’m talking about this player (usually sitting next to The Flea) and I had been getting nothing but condescending vibes and disrespect from him. Which was fine. I actually find joy in people giving me reasons not to like them because I mostly make my living winning money from genuinely nice people and that’s something I sometimes feel conflicted about. I would probably be happier playing at a table with eight pieces of shit.

Anyways, I’m still not a Gnat fan and I’m sure he was just feeling the high of being stuck on a bender and finally getting sugar. He’s the type of dude I expect to go right back to being a dick the next time I see him. Maybe I can finally give someone the Two Face nickname.

I ended up absolutely smashing those guys three-handed. Granted, the deck was slapping me in the face. I was dealt an insane amount of premium pocket pairs and my unpaired starting hands flopped top pair or better at a very favorable frequency. When you are playing short-handed against a good player that’s also running hot, you have zero chance. I ended up winning $1422 in less than 90 minutes before killing off one of the players. I then played 8/16 for two hours and realized the 15/30 game wasn’t going to restart at a decent hour and decided to go home and rest up for the tournament instead of grinding out at smaller stakes.

I’m about to hop in the shower and head to Muckleshoot to play this tournament with a ridiculous start time of 10 AM. There’s a scheduler that knows nothing about his player pool. Poker players don’t want to wake up at 8 or 9 AM to play tournaments on a Sunday. Generally, we’d rather start at noon and play til 2 AM if we have to.

One thing I’ll elaborate on before I head out: I mentioned that we might have a WSOP Main Event-sized last longer bet in this tournament and I guess I should elaborate on that. Originally, Palace was supposed to host a 10 player $1100 buy in one table satellite today and the winner of this table would use the money to travel to Las Vegas and buy in to the $10,000 WSOP Main Event. At the last minute, a decent amount of the players decided they wanted to play the Muckleshoot tournament today and the satellite was cancelled. It was proposed to me that we do an $1100 last longer bet in the tournament instead and the winner of the last longer could use the money for the same purpose. Since my backers are covering this 100% for me, I don’t care what we do, but this last longer sounds much more appealing than the one table satellite, so I’m in.

When the satellite idea was proposed to me, I balked. I would have to put up $1100 for a roughly 10% chance at having 73% of myself and have to piece out the remaining 27% nine different ways. This didn’t appeal much to me. I have had plenty of people offer to put me in the Main and my absolute worst case scenario plan is that I’m going to sell 80% of my action at 1.25 markup and play the Main Event at zero cost to myself. 20% of myself 100% of the time sounds better than 73% of myself 10% of the time. You can do the math there and see that it’s a pretty simple decision, especially when you consider one route costs $1100 and the other route costs $0. But then my backers said they would just buy me in and I couldn’t say no to that. I believe the same deal would apply to this last longer bet.

Getting in shower and leaving shortly.

10:32 AM: Well, I started this thing off in spectacular fashion. Before I can even digest the particulars I’m posting with the 53 of clubs and find myself in a 6-way limped pot.

The flop is 532, I bet 400 into 600 and three players call.

Turn is brutal, yet interesting: 4 of clubs. The 2 of clubs is on the flop. So I now have two pair and an open-ended straight flush draw and the current best hand 0% of the time. It checks to me, I check, the button bets 2k, the small blind calls, and the big blind makes it 5k. I have a pretty monstrous draw so I’m not interested in folding here, but I do have a bit of a dilemma because calling can create some problems. But let’s be real here – I’m not folding this hand during the rebuy period.

I call. And the bad things happen. The button jams for 18k, the small blind folds, and the big blind calls for 10.5k. I spent some time trying to do the math of the situation and determined that I needed to call 13k to win nearly 40k, so I’m getting 3 to 1 and need to win 25% of the time to break even. I have four full house outs and nine flush outs, so I’m going to win about 26% of the time, plus I’m guessing I have two straight outs. Calling here is correct. Plus I can still rebuy for another 90+ minutes. I stick it in and whiff against two 6x hands.

That cost me almost 80% of my stack on my first hand dealt in.

I guess this is a good time to mention that the last longer bet is NOT in play. If it was, I probably would have check-folded this hand on the turn because the button reraising is so likely.

I wasn’t planning on playing snug, survival poker with my remaining 6k and I dwindled down to 5k before squeeze-jamming over a 1200 open and call at 100/200 with ATdd. This is a total gamble since I really don’t expect a 6x open to fold to a jam of my stack size, but I’m not looking to sit on a 25 big blind stack this early in a re-entry tournament with deep stacks. Unfortunately the small blind reshoves with a huge stack, which is always Fuck City for me. The other two guys fold and I’m heads up against AA.

The board runs out QJxKx which looks good but the river is a fourth spade, giving him a flush and I head to the counter to buy my second bullet.

11:07 AM: I guess I can offer the particulars now. Starting stacks are 25k with blinds beginning at 100/100 and currently at 100/200 with an additional 200 ante from the big blind. Registration is open for another hour.

Big Daddy started his job as poker room manager at Muckleshoot yesterday so hopefully he makes an appearance at some point today.

11:34 AM: One of my buddies and fantasy baseball foes is currently sitting behind the Pacers bench at Game 7 of the Pacers-Cavs series and I’m trying to spot him on TV. You can too. He’s wearing a big blue clown wig so it should be hard. He says he directly under the State Farm sign to the right of the Pacers bench. So sick!

11:45 AM: Notables in the field: Solomon Grundy, John Kim (on his third bullet!), Bill W, and Chief Wiggum.

12:09 PM: Some gifts from Muckleshoot:

I actually like the jacket, but I’m not sure I can wear a jacket with my name on it in public and not feel like a tool.

12:11 PM: 21.7k @ first break. Blinds are 200/400 with 400 big blind ante. Registration is closed. 89 players entered and 73 remain.

12:39 PM: Obviously super card dead. I’ve won one pot when I opened with AJ and flopped an ace on a super dry board and got two streets of action. I’ve speculated with A3ss and 77 and whiffed in raised multiway pots. I opened AQ and whiffed and the man called a river bet when all the draws missed and the board paired, losing to J9o.

12:44 PM: Blinds just went up to 300/600 and I have 17.6K. The good news: even though I’ve had ZERO momentum, I still have 30 bigs nearly three hours into this tournament.

12:51 PM: Tourney life decision: folds to me in hijack, I make 1500 with AKhh, button 3-bets to 5100, and it folds back to me. One thing I know for sure is that I’m not folding. Standard 4-bet jam here. Calling would put almost a third of my stack in pre so that’s not an option and folding is just silly. The only play here is JAM. I stick it in and he winds up folding.

A short while later, I open KK to 1500 and the next player is my only caller. Flop is QQJ with two hearts and I decide to check-call 2k. Turn is a 9 and I take the same line and she checks back. River ace of hearts and I’m very happy to see her check behind because that means my hand is always good.

Not exactly a huge coup with the kings but it’s better than losing the pot on a very dangerous board.

27.7k

How good is Mitch Haniger at baseball? Didi Gregorius is getting all sorts of attention for his ridiculous start – and deservedly so – but Haniger is basically right there with him and has received almost zero national attention. Maybe it starts today?

1:26 PM: Heads up with Solomon Grundy in the blinds, he limps, and I check back T3o. He reads my blog sometimes so it’ll be fun if he winds up reading this hand.

Flop 654, he bets 1k and I call.

Turn is a 3 and he check-calls 2k.

River is a 2, bringing a final board of 65432 and putting a straight on the board and he checks to me. It would be pretty sick if he was inducing me with a 7 here, but I don’t think he’d take this line, so I bomb it for 10k and he folds.

1:31 PM: Two hands later and we have lift off! I have AA on the button and there’s a 2k open and a call from Solomon Grundy in front of me. I check the stack sizes and eventually make it 7500 because I’ve come to learn that my 3-bet sizing has been too small. Only the opener calls.

Flop is 876 with two clubs and I’m 100% committed and now I have to figure out the best way to get my remaining 24kish in. How likely am I to get action if I jam 20k into a 15k pot? Not really sure. It seems like he has an overpair or… nothing. I decide to go the milk route and bet 10k and if he has a set here, bless his soul. He calls.

Turn pairs the 6 and now I have an easy jam and, after acting like I have a decision, I put it all in and he snap calls with… KK, for the ultimate cooler. I dodge a king on the river and get a full double up.

62.2K

2:14 PM: 64k coming back to 600/1200.

Here’s my buddy at the Pacers game with the blue wig and the shellshocked face in the background:

2:45 PM: Middle position opens to 3200 and I flat on button with AA. Sometimes you have to take some risks to accumulate chips and I think he’s more likely to put more chips in the pot with a c-bet than calling my 3-bet. Plus other good things can happen. The small blind jams go over 30k, the big blind and opener fold, and I snap call and roll and hold vs AQ.

106k at 600/1200.

2:52 PM: Just called a 20k jam with JJ and held vs KTcc to bust a player. We are surging!

3:08 PM: Here’s Bill W’s bust out hand. 100k pot, all in on the flop. Doesn’t get any sicker than this (might have to zoom in):

3:23 PM: Currently at about 150k with blinds at 800/1600. 29 players remain and ten of us will cash. First place is $10.2k.

3:41 PM: Here I am trying not to be embarrassed as Aquaman stops by to blatantly take a picture of me:

And here’s what my wife is doing:

Eating bugs.

And spiders.

😮😮😮

4:11 PM: Here’s an aspect of no limit that drives me nuts: players that hold their cards in a way that blocks their chip stack so that you can’t see how much they have. It’s pretty damn relevant and it’s kind of awkward to ask the same person every time how much they have. Ugh.

Of course I could memorize the stack sizes but that seems to be a skill set I don’t have.

4:30 PM: Dinner break. 140k coming back to 1500/3000. I think there are 25 players left. Cards back in the air at 5 PM.

5:24 PM: One limper, cutoff makes it 15k at 1500/3000 and I call with 88 on the button. We are heads up to 752 flop and he leads 25k. He has about 55k behind and I have an overpair to the board. Not really sure what else I can do but put him all in here and hope my hand is good, so that’s what I do and he starts tanking and I’m ecstatic that I have the best hand.

He does wind up making the call though and I have to dodge… wait, what the hell? He has TT? Jesus. You can never be too careful, I guess, but he thought long enough that I was positive I had the best hand. Kind of a brutal unintentional slow roll. The turn is a 9, giving me straight outs, but I brick the river and I’m down to 52k just like that.

I know I had 52k because he opened the next hand and I jammed on him with AQ suites and he folded.

I’ve lost some more pots since then and I find myself in that special comfort zone of about 14 big blinds.

Not sure if that 88 hand qualifies as a blowup but it sure feels gross. I had 140k 36 minutes ago. 🤮

5:38 PM: Jammed AT right after posting that last update and busted a 32k stack when I outflopped his 88. Back up to 88k and we are down to 19.

5:55 PM: Open to 10k with KJdd and a loose player jams 27k. I snap and hold vs QTo.

Back to 111k. 16 left. Chief Wiggum and Solomon Grundy still in also.

6:06 PM: 14 players left and all seven at my table have 20+ bigs. Not sure what’s going on at the other table, but could be a bit of a bubble.

6:20 PM: Currently telling stories about getting arrested while I was playing poker at All Star Lanes and how I’ve been kicked out of every poker room in Kitsap County and Shoreline. Most people have a hard time seeing that but that’s because I’ve been sober eight years and basically no one on this side of the Narrows Bridge has ever seen that side of me.

6:31 PM: 13 players left. Blinds are up to 3000/6000 now and I have a little over 90k, which is the smallest stack at my table.

6:37 PM: 12 left.

6:49 PM: Dwindled all the way to 38.5k. Button opens 20k, I jam with A7dd and he calls, obviously, with… AJ.

Flop… all diamonds! And we are back to 90k.

6:55 PM: Cutoff opens 20k, folds to me in the big and I look down at JJ and all my chips go into the pot and he snaps so fast and excitedly I know I’m not going to see AK. Up against AA and there’s no miracle this time.

Bust in 12th for maximum time wasted and pain felt.

Ohhhhh it hurts.

No more poker today. Just gonna head home and lick my wounds.

Solomon Grundy still in with a short stack and Chief Wiggum has a very serious 300k+ stack, primed to make a run at first place.

There is a mixed house game tomorrow that I will most likely be attending and Global’s Rattlesnake Open events officially kick off at 5:30. I believe I will be multitasking but I haven’t talked to my wife about either, so who knows.

POSTSCRIPT

I went home and fell asleep before 9 PM which is absolutely absurd and woke up to messages from The Joker trolling me because The Gnat outlasted me in the tournament today.

That’s funny. The Gnat wasn’t there. But that’s not stopping him from telling everyone at the Palace that he made the final table and finished in 9th (a weird lie – why not say you took 1st or 2nd or 3rd?).

I’m sending Joker questions to ask The Gnat about his deep run and so far he has whiffed on everything: first place prize, tournament start time, did anyone from Palace go deep, etc. I thought there was some highly improbable chance that I overlooked this guy that is totally on my radar now, even though I walked through the whole room sizing every table up and seeing who I knew that was playing.

He is also claiming that he won this same tournament the last time it was played. Curious, I typed his first name on Hendon Mob and only four entries showed up and I quickly determined which one is his. He has three recorded cashes, all in the 2016 Muckleshoot Spring Classic:

13th in the $250 Shootout for $700
24th in the $300 NL for $500
9th in the $500 NL for $3070

That’s it. For his CAREER.

What a fucking clown. I’m half tempted to drive to Palace just to make him look stupid, but I need to be up around 8:30 AM for yoga and gym time.

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Global Poker’s Rattlesnake Open Starts Tomorrow

April 28, 2018

First off, I made an edit on yesterday’s post about what it was that I’ve never seen before because there seemed to be some confusion:

https://batcavepoker.com/2018/04/27/something-ive-never-seen-before-i-think/

Second off, if you are unfamiliar with Global Poker I wrote a pretty sizable write up about their online poker site last year. Click the link below to read about what Global Poker is and how to play for real money on the site… LEGALLY.

Global Poker: LEGAL Online Poker for U.S. Residents

Here’s a link to the schedule for the upcoming Rattlesnake Open:

Rattlesnake Open Schedule

If you want to play for real money, focus on the Sweeps Cash schedule. The Gold Coin schedule is play money. You might have to do some scrolling.

I will not be playing in the Global freeroll tomorrow because I will be playing Muckleshoot’s $400 5th Sunday event, but I will try to play as many real events as possible because winning Player of the Series is a thing that appeals to me. I would like to add to my trophy case.

I’m about to head to Palace for some 15/30 action, but I will not be live blogging because I’m going to save that energy for tomorrow’s tournament. We might be playing for a WSOP Main Event-sized last longer bet, so the sweat could be pretty serious.

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$225 No Limit Hold’em Tournament @ Palace (Live Blog)

April 15, 2018

Cards are in the air! Particulars and live updates coming soon!

10:18 AM: Tournaments like this are few and far between in the Tacoma area.

Everyone starts with 10k in chips and blinds are 25/50, so we all start with 200 big blinds, which is pretty deep and made even deeper with 30 minute levels and decently stair-stepped levels. House added $2500 but they are also keeping $25 out of every buy in.

This should be a much softer field than your average $225 buy in tournament and it wouldn’t surprise me if this was the biggest buy in of the year for a decent amount of these players. I haven’t taken much of a look at the field yet but I would imagine most of the best local players were in Pendleton, Oregon playing their main event this weekend.

My table is 10-handed and I recognize four of my opponents: two small stakes Palace regs, one of my WSOP backers, and one of my former Palace co-workers.

One thing we should all keep an eye on is a rare poker appearance from The Legend. With over $2.2 billion in online cashes, his presence in this field is notable. I have him at about -850 to take first outright.

11:00 AM: First notable hand: player that looks brand new min-raises at 50/100 and I have AK in the big. Raising seems like the obvious play here but I don’t like it. This dude seems wildly unpredictable and playing a huge pot out of position against someone that probably understands very few concepts sounds like a high variance spot. I just call.

Flop is all middle cards, like 975 and we both check. Turn is a blank and I bet 300, which is a value bet. I am 95% sure I have the best hand. He calls. River is 7s and I bet 500, another value bet. He says raise and I announce call as soon as he states an amount (1500). Unfortunately, he also has AK.

11:38 AM: Start hand with 6800 at 150/300 and I open with AJ and the noob is my only caller. Flop JT5; I bet 1000 and he puts me all in. Super turbo snap call. He shows JT and that holds.

Second bullet.

11:46 AM: Second bullet going well. KQ < A7 on 953KA and then J5o big blind < T9 on JT7QT facing a min-bet on every street.

Down to 5800 already.

11:53 AM: Okay, I’m pretty triggered. Down to 4300 now. This is the one pot I’ve won so far: one limper at 25/50, I make it 200 with KK, he calls and then check-folds after the flop. I’ve lost every other hand I’ve played. So I have less than half the starting stack on my second bullet in a field that is as soft as it gets. Pretty huge wasted opportunity if I dust two bullets without ever having more than the starting stack in the easiest tournament I’ll play all year.

11:59AM: Open to 700 under the gun with 99 and a stack of 4300. Kind of a weird spot with no antes. This is a pretty obvious open-jam, but with only 450 in dead money, I think making a standard raise here might be okay. I’m obviously getting it in against a reraise. Button winds up calling me and then I bet 1000 on a flop of Q22 rainbow. I don’t think this is ever a bluff, so even though I was never going to fold this hand, I think getting it in here with a likely two-outer is pretty terrible when I still have about 10 bigs behind.

Edit: I bet 1k on flop and they jammed on me.

That was last round though. I now have 2600 at 200/400 and I’ll be jamming my whole range now.

12:09 PM: And that’s that. Jam KQ under the gun, smaller stack calls with JJ, and the small blind tank-calls with A3 and, of course, I beat the jacks but not the A3 so now I’m walking around the building wondering how I could squander such a ripe opportunity.

I mean… you can’t win them all and cashing tournaments is hard, but goodness, I want a redo!!

12:40 PM: Steam has cooled a little. Currently on the list for 8/16, 15/30, 30/60, and 2/5 no limit. This is the first day Palace is trying to spread a no limit cash game and so far there are three names on the list and one of them is the acting floor. 😂 Not expecting that to happen any time soon.

There are seven names on the list for 15/30 and eight on the list for 30/60, but I think I’m the only one that’s actually here. I doubt that game goes any time soon and probably not at all today.

I guess I’ll post cash game updates and monitor some tourney chip stacks. Both my backers are still in: Chief Wiggum and Gargoyle (?). Aquaman and The Legend are still in. Cobra has chips.

1:03 PM: Scratch that, The Legend is out. I heard he turned the nut flush and got it in vs bottom two and his opponent rivered a full house.

Poker is hard.

Aquaman has around 40k and my other friend, I’m going to call him Kung Fu Panda, has around 30k.

Blackjack still in the field – looks like he had about 15k.

1:31 PM: 8/16 is starting 7-handed and the 15/30 isn’t particularly close. Part-Time and a few semi-regs in the game, plus one Palace floor I’ve only seen play 4/8.

Down to 63 in the tournament. 10 get paid.

2:09 PM: 50ish left in tournament. Some updates:

  • Chief Wiggum 10k
  • Gargoyle 13k
  • John Kim HEAPS
  • Aquaman 50k
  • Black Turtle 11k
  • Blackjack 13k
  • Cobra 30k
  • Kung Fu Panda 13k

Rocksteady has joined the 8/16 game and Part-Time was like “What’s my muthafuckin’ name?!” and played less than two orbits before cashing out.

2:25 PM: Call a raise after multiple limps with 66 and it’s 6-ways to flop and I get it capped on 643 two spade flop 5-ways. Turn is the 7 of spades and I just call a bet and then fold 8 river to a bet and call. They chop it up with A5 and 75.

2:48 PM: 15/30 starting. Finish 8/16 -$17. Stack updates:

  • Aquaman 43k
  • Black Turtle 9k
  • Blackjack 15k
  • Chief Wiggum busted
  • Cobra 41k
  • Gargoyle 32k
  • John Kim 35k

Just walked over to see Kung Fu Panda all in with KK vs AQ pre but ace on flop and he’s busted.

15/30 starting lineup: Chief Wiggum, Rocksteady, Kung Fu Panda, and four regs that are mostly decent.

The Queen takes the last open seat. 🤦🏻‍♂️

3:05 PM: Let’s start this off right! I open QJo, Rocksteady 3-bets from small blind and The Queen calls from the big. Last time I played 15/30 with The Queen she played the tightest I’ve ever seen her play… by far. So she has a big hand. Flop is T96 with two diamonds and they take turns raising while I call. Turn is a king and Rocksteady still leads out and The Queen raises. I call it cold because I don’t bet The Queen heads up and I should make more money by keeping Rocksteady in. Unfortunately, he folds and then the board pairs on the river and I lose to her KK.

Gargoyle just busted which also means that Chief Wiggum is leaving the 15/30 game.

3:20 PM: Another fun hand: open KTdd, The Queen and Kung Fu Panda are the only callers. Flop is AQ6 with two diamonds, I bet and they both call. Turn is a brick and I don’t see any good reason to bet here, so I check, The Queen bets and Kung Fu Panda raises. I can’t fold here, so I call and The Queen reraises and comes out on the nice side of variance again when the river comes safe.

31 left in tournament. Updates:

  • Aquaman 65k
  • John Kim 25k
  • Cobra 35k
  • Blackjack 24k
  • Black Turtle busted
  • Gargoyle busted

Aquaman enjoying his deep run:

3:39 PM: Someone came to play today. By far the most prominent regular without a nickname just 3-bet me in b2b hands and showed some spunk postflop.

First hand I open QJ, call his 3-bet and then check-raise AK4 flop. He calls. I bet 3 turn and he calls again (we are playing 25/50 Overs). Obv giving up now, we both check river and he shows… 55? Huh?

Very next hand I open AT, there’s a call, he reraises and we both call. I whiff flop and check-fold and he barrels turn and other guy folds and he shows T7ss for ten high. Okay.

4:10 PM: Just did a lap around the tournament area and saw Aquaman facing an all in on the river on a board of Q98Jx and he called pretty quickly and the all in shows KT. Aquaman shows his QT and does a quick glance at his stack and sees that he’s covered. Pretty brutal runout considering he started the hand from the big blind in a limped pot. 🤷🏻‍♂️

John Kim just hit the rail also.

That leaves Cobra and Blackjack as the last two players standing that I’m following. There’s also a Palace dealer that I used to work with still in, so I’ll keep an eye on him too. They are down to 23.

This 15 session has had a rough start as I’ve won zero notable pots and am already down $700+.

4:25 PM: Sigh. It’s just one of those days, huh? Open cutoff AK and button 3-bets. I just flat as is my play with 100% of my range when I’m heads up and out of position. Flop AKT, we are in 25/50 Overs; I check-raise and he calls. Turn 9. I bet and he raises. Seems like my hand is pretty strong, but it is actually in pretty bad shape on this bird texture against this line. I just call and check-call river and lose to KK.Just a terrible start in what I would call a below average 15/30 game.

4:39 PM: Down to two tables. Cobra busted. Blackjack and the Palace dealer our last hope! Meanwhile I’m stuck $1k already after punting two bullets, threatening to match my terrible dayon April 1st.

5:14 PM: Just heard the floor say a deal has been proposed in the tournament: 15-way chop and 10% to the dealers. From what I heard, only one person said no. Holy shit. That is an amazing lack of gamble. I’m not rooting against the dealers to do well here but 10% is a lot for a $225 buy in and peer pressuring the tip amount gets a huge thumbs down from me. It’s a good way to make someone look like an asshole when it is really matter of personal preference.

Blackjack just busted in 13th, which leaves the Palace dealer as my only rooting interest remaining. Looks like it’s going to be a boring final table… if there even is one.

5:28 PM: One good hand: hijack opens, I 3-bet A9hh from cut and he calls. Flop is K63 two spades one heart and he check-calls $25. Turn is 5 of hearts and he donks $50. I feel like this is a weak probe with a hand that turned a pair or more outs, like A4ss or A5ss (or maybe I’m just steaming), so I make it $100 and he calls. Fortunately, river is the 3 of hearts and I can bet for value but he folds, confirming my suspicion that he was weak.

6:04 PM: Fun session. Open button with A7 and spray off four bets on AK6ss flop and call down on 8-A runout vs AQss. Just getting smashed today.

The game is not good so I’m actually considering just taking the L and heading home.

6:40 PM: Yup. Calling it a night. Cashing out -$1463 for 15/30, which puts me at a solid -$1920 for the day. I’d have to scroll through my records but I’m pretty sure that’s my second worse day of 2018.

Happy to report they are playing this tournament out. They are down to six players now and the Palace dealer is still in. Take a look at this focus!

Sounds like they are chopping 6-ways and I’m out of here. The super green, brand new player that bluff-raised me with AK earlier is getting most of the money.

God bless America.

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This Week’s Poker Schedule (4/9/2018)

April 10, 2018

Going through one of those stretches where lots of random stuff is filling my calendar instead of playing poker. As I noted last week, I spent this weekend attending a celebration of life for my wife’s parents, so I didn’t play at all Saturday or Sunday*. It’s always interesting gaining a new perspective and experiencing something entirely different from the culture I’ve grown up in. Not to mention actually participating in the process and not understanding anything that is being said and worrying that I might disrespect someone unintentionally because I’m uneducated in their customs, or simply because I’m clumsy in executing them. For instance, you’re supposed to crouch down any time you walk past a monk, which I’m sure I didn’t do a number of times. Then I accidentally cut a monk off when we were walking in the same direction and we both insisted that the other go first. So I went first because I didn’t know if it was worse to cut him off or to try and outdo him in a politeness battle. Either way, I’m pretty sure someone in the room saw this infraction and was shaking their head.

Still, it was a great experience and I’m happy to honor my in-laws and I think it’s amazing that they wanted me involved in the ceremony. Not just involved as in I got to sit with everyone, but involved as in I was part of the inner circle of immediate family that participated in spoon-feeding both my wife’s mom and dad while the monks were chanting!

Here are some photos and a video to give an idea of what it looked like:

*though I did manage to watch every pitch of Shohei Ohtani’s ridiculous outing on Sunday. 6+ innings with a perfect game, 12 strikeouts, 1 walk, and 1 hit? On 91 pitches? After hitting .389 with 3 homers for the week? This dude is INSANE! “As advertised” does no justice to what this kid has done so far this season.

Monday night I played in a $5/$10 dealer’s choice house game and it was a lot of fun. I am happy to play at a third of my normal stakes if I’m playing games I don’t normally get to play. They don’t spread any razz, stud, stud 8, 2-7 triple draw, or badugi in any Washington casinos, so this is basically the only way to gain actual playing experience. I had a pretty good night overall, but ended up -$195 because I made the dreaded mix game mistake of playing a really big pot in a big bet game and setting myself up to get freerolled.

We were playing Big O8 and I started with over $400 and made what had to be a terrible call with a double suited hand that had 8432 in it and no ace from the small blind. To be fair, I have done zero studying of this game, so it’s not too surprising that I could make some mistakes, but that’s why I should just fold everything that doesn’t seem like a super obvious play (like suited A23xx hands) instead of setting myself up to get stacked in a game I have basically no experience in. Well, I called a small raise with this super marginal hand and saw the 433 with two diamonds flop. I checked on the flop, the PFR bet $15, the button called and it was back to me. I had no idea what to do. After thinking I should maybe just take a passive line and keep the pot small, I ended up convincing myself that if I potted it now I would probably just take it down and not have to split with a low (as I have basically no low draw), so I made it $76 and only the PFR calls. The turn is the 2 of diamonds. I am now only losing to 44 and A5 of diamonds for high, but my low draw has been reduced to a live 8. I have now successfully set myself up to get freerolled and I decide to try and pot control by checking, but my opponent is not letting that happen and bets $150. I call and I hate it. The river is an ace and he puts me all in and I don’t see how I can fold now after calling turn and leaving myself with less than $200 behind. I pay it off and I’m expecting to chop the vast majority of the time, but he shows A63xx with nut diamonds for a live 6 low (which beats my live 8) and a rivered boat to scoop everything. Absolutely sickening. I feel like I should have folded this hand preflop, but I have no concept of what I should have done after flopping a full house with very little scoop potential and no redraw to speak of. Keep it small and try to get to showdown? Check-call flop and check-fold turn? I honestly don’t know.

But that pot was my whole night. Instead of winning a few hundred dollars because I played well all night long, I lost a few hundred dollars because I played one hand poorly.

Tuesdays are basically always my day off and I spent it watching A Quiet Place, making dinner, and going to the gym with my wife. Now I’m writing this post and playing a couple online tournaments.

Tomorrow I will likely be playing PLO @ Palace but that doesn’t start until 6 PM and who knows how late it will go.

Thursday I’m not sure what I’m going to do. I’ve been occupied lately, but that hasn’t stopped me from checking in on Bravo and the 15/30 LHE game at Palace hasn’t gone three days in a row. Radio Mike going back to his day job and Joker and I being busy outside of poker lately hasn’t helped at all, but I can’t help but feel that interest in the game is somewhat waning. I hope I’m being dramatic, but there’s some things at play here. There have been multiple times where there have been tons of names on the list and the game just doesn’t go and that kind of sends a message to the players that starting the games they want to play in are not a priority. That’s a good way to make players give up on the game or just go elsewhere. Also, there have been some regulars complaining about the lack of action in the 15/30 game and that it’s not a “fun” game and have been boycotting it and encouraging others to play 8/16 and straddle every hand. I don’t really get that concept. You can straddle and gamble at 15/30 also and do what you can do make the game better, so my only real takeaway is these guys want to splash around at a smaller limit and they are trying to get other players to follow suit. Lastly, this Sunday Palace is going to be spreading 2/5 no limit hold’em for the first time. This is obviously not going to help the 15/30 LHE game gain any traction and it very well could kill it altogether. Who knows.

[Edit: I take that back. There’s a chance that it could help. If 15 people come in to play 2/5 NL and there are only 9 seats, that’s six players that could fill a 15/30 seat while they wait. Shrug.]

What I do know is that I’m not about to go back to playing 8/16 every day, so if I have to start travelling to Fortune to play in bigger games again, then that’s what I’m going to have to do. A daily 15/30 in my backyard is a dream, but I’m definitely starting to get concerned about it.

I’m less concerned about the game going on Friday, but my weekend is going to be dominated by family again. My wife has a cousin from San Diego visiting right now and her family wants to take him to The Met in Seattle and I feel like I should go with.

Saturday I have what I hope to be my final meeting with my CPA to complete my taxes. What an ordeal that has been. I won’t get into all the details, but the amount of money I’m supposed to pay the IRS has been very inconsistent and my CPA teased me with a final number that was so amazing I wasn’t surprised to discover a huge oversight when I checked her work and the amount I owed was actually more than five times what she quoted me. Groan. I am confident now that we have sorted out all the details and everything is in order.

After that, we are meeting up with my parents because my aunt and uncle are in town. I guess tentative current plans are to go to Little Creek Casino, but if I play any poker it won’t be a working session, it will be a I-might-have-to-leave-any-minute session which means I won’t be playing anything worthwhile.

Sunday Palace is having a $225 no limit hold’em tournament that starts at 10 AM. I haven’t looked at the structure too much, but I don’t really care. It should be fun! That’s the same day that Palace will be unveiling the 2/5 no limit cash game. If I have to choose between 15/30 and 2/5 I’m definitely playing 15/30, but if my options are 2/5 or 8/16, I might have something to think about, depending on the lineups.

That’s my upcoming week! I will try to blog on Thursday and probably for the Palace tournament on Sunday as well. You may have noticed that I got my own domain: http://www.batcavepoker.com and I also have access to new features for my blog so I will be working on giving the blog a sleek, new look, but when I will actually have time to do any of that is TBD. I’m also putting the final touches on my WSOP schedule so I’ll be posting that in the next week or so.

Stay tuned!