Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Happy Hour promotions bring out all the donkeys

Full Tilt is running a promo for 5x Frequent Player Points (FPPs), so you accumulate the reward points at a rate of 5x the norm. I've found that promotions like this draw out all the crazies and hooligans. I just don't get it though; how do these players have money in the first place? For example, and I'll have to go find the hand later, but I made a river bluff for around $2 into a ~$5 pot with AQo high, and got CALLED by QTo high. What's up with that? Really? You thought QT high may be good here? Particularly for a little less than half pot? WOW. I had to write "tnx" in the chat window for that one!

Full Tilt Pot-Limit Hold'em, $0.10 BB (8 handed) - Full-Tilt Converter Tool from

CO ($11.69)
Hero (Button) ($7.85)
SB ($9.28)
BB ($13.03)
UTG ($2.62)
UTG+1 ($3.90)
MP1 ($4.29)
MP2 ($11.29)

Preflop: Hero is Button with Ad, Qh
4 folds, CO calls $0.10, Hero bets $0.40, SB calls $0.35, 2 folds

Flop: ($1) 2s, 8d, Jh (2 players)
SB checks, Hero checks

Turn: ($1) Ks (2 players)
SB bets $0.20, Hero raises to $1, SB calls $0.80
Turn an inside straight draw + an over.

River: ($3) 7s (2 players)
SB checks, Hero bets $1.75, SB calls $1.75
Calling with QTo is profitable *EVERY TIME* LOL. Nice call! Way to win a pot on the turned open ended straight draw

Total pot: $6.50 | Rake: $0.43

Hero had Ad, Qh (high card, Ace).
SB had 10h, Qc (high card, King).
Outcome: Hero won $6.07

I was seeing a lot of people going all in with completely marginal holdings - second pair vs. top pair no kicker, all in with draws, second pair no kickers, etc. It was crazy.

I recall I ended a table with a guy running 90/50 (YES, not a typo NINETY PERCENT VPIP / FIFTY PERCENT PRE-FLOP RAISE) where i was down to half stack and dealt AQo out of position. I limp, he raise, folds around, I re-raise 3x hoping to steal the pot right there. He calls, I cbet the flop, he calls, I all in the turn, and he calls to show 52o for the turned two pair. 52o? COME ON! On a 3 bet pot pre-flop pot? You think that's a profitable move, committing 1/4 of your stack PF with 52o? I want to be against that player EVERY TIME.

I realized that when Full Tilt holds their next promotion, I want to be a part of it! It was too easy...

For the week, I am up around 7 full buy ins, and running very good at the moment. Strike that - I am not running good; I am running variance neutral - which, to me, is running good. I am hitting a lot of sets, too, which makes up for the the lack of sets I've hit since I started with Full Tilt back in March. (I am running a flopped set roughly one in 11.4 now, from a low of around 1 in 14. FYI: The statistical norm for hitting a set on the flop is 1 in 8.) That's not to say that I'm running like a God; I still get my money in good on the flop with 77 vs. 2 other players (AQ & AJ) who are calling all in, and the board runner pairs twice with 88 & TT giving them the split pot. However, I am running FAR better than my AA cracked continually by AK or QQ, or 72 or any other number of combinations. However, I must admit that I am quite frightened when dealt KK and another player bets into me. I always assume the absolute worst, where I am dominated by AA. I've been through that so many times, I'm almost afraid when I have KK for fear of the AA.

Random musing: So Mrs. Poker Meister plays mahjong with her girlfriends on a weekly basis. Last night was her night to host. After they were done playing, she was giddy about her winnings and told me so. I, in return, shared with her my good fortune on the tables, being up 2.6 buy ins. Her comment was "Good! You ought quit for the night while you're ahead."

Now, perhaps I'm overreacting here, but I believe poker players are a superstitious lot. For me, I make sure to wear my lucky watch which my wife bought for me as a birthday gift some years back. I also make sure, when playing live, to use my lucky card protector. When clean, I try to wear my lucky "poker shorts." These items bring me luck and comfort. I digress; the point is that I feel like "you ought quit for the night while you're ahead" implies that I'm going to lose it back to the tables, does it not? It implies that my OWN WIFE does not have the confidence in me to continue to crush. Come on, now! Don't jinx me like that; I don't need negativity filling my head while I'm trying to stack these donkeys who are trying to get 5x points. Poker is a game of confidence, and if your own wife is not showing you confidence, than it is difficult for you to stem that tide and remain confident yourself.

Truth be told, no sooner that she says that, I run my stack down to 1.4 buy ins. I have her to blame for that dip. After all, who else do I have to blame? (I immediately proceeded to push a pocket pair of Jacks into ATo who hits 2 pair on the flop.) It took me the rest of the night (approx. 1 1/2 hours) to get back to close to where I was prior to her "advice", at 2.1 buy ins.

Does anyone else have the problem where their wives just don't understand poker and things to say and not to say?

Statements that work for a poker player: "Awesome." "Good job on the winnings." "Keep up the good work." "Excellent playing." Perhaps even a: "You're just unlucky tonight." To a bad beat: "Oh, that sucks; get 'em next time."

Statements that don't work for the poker player: "Don't lose too much." "Maybe you ought to quit while you're ahead." "Are you going to be mad because you lost that hand?"

Essentially, to any poker player spouses reading this (which seems like a paradox I suppose): Keep it positive.


  1. Are you kidding? A simple comment should not "jinx" you and in fact, maybe the downside to your evening was simply because it was after midnight and you are tired from playing ungodly amounts of poker while trying to maintain a job, be a good father and a wonderful husband :)

  2. I think he's just a big donkey who has to blame his wife for his shortcomings


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