Sunday, March 20, 2005

What we have to learn to do, we learn by doing.

This title brought to you courtesy of Aristotle - and yes, I did have to Google for it.

Things I have learned this week:

- The cost of a pram and accessories - £480 ($920). As one friend said, 'What size engine does it come with?'

- Full Tilt Poker players are definitely getting looser. 40%+ VPIP on one 2/4 table I played!

- Party Poker has another 20% reload bonus! After doubling my $500 deposit on the last bonus, I now have the bankroll to deposit the full $1000 this time. Mrs Div has already been warned I may not be contactable next week. She also knows to expect numerous expletive laden outbursts, originating from the computer room.

- Six pints of lager post-work on a Friday evening does not impair my starting hand selection when I get home and log in.

- Six pints of lager post-work on a Friday evening does impair the flop evaluation section of my brain. Particularly the crucial 'missed flop' function.

- It is unwise to wait 18 months before completing unpacking of your possessions after moving home. Which leads on to...

Things I Have Found This Weekend:

- My Paul Smith cufflinks. Which I'd replaced long ago with an emergency purchase of a £10 Tie Rack pair at the airport en route to a meeting.

- My Armani sunglasses. Replaced last summer by a Stussy pair when I was in San Francisco. The Stussy pair would not look out of place at the WSOP final table I feel, but they are a little extreme for a moderately sunny day at the football. The Armanis have a more understatedly elegant vibe.

- My local casino membership card. Not actually essential to gain entry, but a sign, a sign, I tell you!

In other news:

Saturday afternoon brought a fairly brutal lesson in poker variance. Expressed through the medium of two Full Tilt 2/4 tables.

On table 1 I was sailing ahead. Racing to a $100 profit in no time at all. No fancy play required, just good cards holding up, and not playing any dross.

I did hit one very nice hand when I called a pre flop raise with 88 and flopped top set on a really low board. My opponent had QQ and wasn't about to fold to my raises. In fact he was reraising. No complaints from me!

On table 2 I was drowning in a sea of missed outs. I wasn't getting any decent pocket pairs, but lots of eminently playable starting hands. AKs, AQs were the main culprits. I don't think I hit a single flush draw, or straight. Even when the cards got some of the flop I always seemed to catch a Q on a K high board, or hit an A with AQ and run into AK.

Whenever I need a rebuy in a limit game, I put the thinking cap on for a few moments to decide whether to continue. There was no particular reason to be so far down, other than bad luck. So when I got to $20 remaining from my original $100 deposit, I bought another $100 and soon slumped to a $130 deficit.

No way was I walking away from that. Mercifully, the poker gods grew tired of toying with me and moved on to some other hapless victim. Table 1 improved to +$105, table 2 recovered to -$102, and I checked out a $3 profit. At least I ticked off another $20 bonus increment. Always play with a bonus underpinning your cards!

Later in the evening another session produced $40 profit in an hour. I slept better after that.

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