Monday, January 29, 2007

Poker Ennui
I find that I am not alone in feeling a sort of listlessness when it comes to online poker these days. After the initial bloodbath in 2006 which saw several sites close its doors to USA players, the loss of Neteller and the scramble to find new alternatives for payment has led to a general disenchantment with playing online.
I feel that in so many ways I am adrift on a small raft in the sea of online poker, just trying to make it through the day to see the next. My aspirations have dwindled, I have lost some of the joy of playing, and frankly, my play has suffered as a result. What used to bring me so much happiness is now "just okay."
Fortunately, a few of my poker groups have helped to keep me anchored in the game. The K9 Poker Tour has a great community, and a recent Forum Challenge had us joining together to attempt to whomp other forums. The CardsChat Bodog buy in events have continued to provide me small, fun tournaments against crafty online players.
I am going to Las Vegas on Super Bowl Sunday. I am hoping that a little live action will help to revive my spirits since I seem to be suffering from some sort of poker depression.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Looking for a tasty tournament tonight? Think that you can complete with some of the world's best poker bloggers? If so, join us for CC's Thursday Bash at PokerStars. Oh yeah -- better bring some major game.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Third Place in Tonight's Mookie
I missed The Mookie last week and frankly had not been doing much in it since my victory late last year. It seemed like I could never catch cards at Full Tilt, and I was rivered waaay too many times.
Tonight I was dealt some small pocket pairs and suited connectors early in the tournament. However, every flop seemed to miss me and I was soon down to what my real life poker buddy Tom calls "single stack mode." I was down to about 640 chips and just waiting for my chance to pounce. I finally caught some cards and slowly built the stack up to where it looked like I might make the final table. I eventually got as high as second, but most often I hovered between third and eighth.
Amazingly, almost all my hands held up at showdown. I took a few chances and caught some good flops. My one luckbox play came when the eventual champ, NumbBono, had a pair of 6's up against my K-Qos. I thought that he was out stealing blinds. Luckily, I spiked a Queen on the river to more than double up.
I thought that I was out when photojenn's A-Kd was up against my Q-Jd. However, I had about 4,500 chips left and went all in a few times to build my stack.
When down to three and my stack much smaller than the other players, I went all in with 4-4. NumbBono had 9-9, and that was all she wrote.
I wish I could take back the call against photojenn. Just a bad read and play on my part. However, I will take the third place finish. Doing that well against the primo competition that was in this Mookie is not too shabby.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

ESPN fuckers. You collect a paycheck for this shit??? GO BEARS !!!!!!!

Friday, January 19, 2007

"Denny, you know there aren't many who can sing a song the way that you do"
Creeque Alley
Confessions of someone politically to the right of center

The latest online poker fiasco -- goodbye Neteller for all USA players -- has once again brought out all kinds of nasty rhetoric on blogs throughout cyberspace. Unfortunately, those of us who have a moderate or conservative point of view get thrown in with all the politicians who have decided that they will limit the freedom of the US citizens. But can we take a closer look at this before attaching labels to everyone and making broad assumptions that just aren't true?

For years, I have embraced many of the concepts of conservatism. Yes -- I believe in the individual, in the right of each person to create his or her own destiny, in the concept of individual responsibilty. Along with these, I want my government to assist people to assist themselves, but not become the answer to every social ill.

Those who believe in conservative ideals, however, also hope to minimize the government's intrusion into the privacy of the individual. But what has been happening due to our politicians?

Loss of freedom. Loss of privacy. Loss of rights. In short, all the things that make some of us shy away from the radical liberals in our society, the ones who (we perceive) want to create a law for every situation, seek handout after handout, and value the right to not be offended over the right to freedom.

Now, however, it seems like conservative politicians have forgotten all about what being conservative means. Instead, they are now the ones forcing government into our private lives, they are the ones dictating values and decisions, they are the ones taking away individual freedom.

It is time for politicians who consider themselves conservatives to remember their roots and remember what conservatives deem important. Get out of our private lives. Don't tell us what we can and can't do. Don't take away our freedom.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Three Quickies

1) I am sorry that we are losing Neteller. I only wish the idiots of the US Congress would do the right thing -- tax and regulate. Of course, they are probably too busy playing the lottery in their home state.

2) A guy on bluffed me out of a pot and then showed his cards afterwards. Yeah -- I was a bit perturbed. A few hands later, I was in a blind with a garbage hand and hit a gutshot with the next overcard on the turn. The river wass a blank, so I had the nuts. Mr. Bluff bet big on the river. I doubled his bet, and he went all in. Unfortunately for him, he also hit his straight, but mine was higher. I got the money from the "stolen" pot back ... plus the rest of his stack. He went away without saying a thing. Poker justice.

3) I won my first home game of 2007. Even with a short stack of chips, I knew I was probably in the money when two of the best players were the first ones out. By the time I was heads up with the chip leader (and host), I was down by about a 6 to 1 ratio. One suckout was all I needed.

Sometimes the poker gods take a liking to you.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Where have I been and what have I been doing????

Believe it or not, this is my first post of 2007. Early January is one of the busiest times at work for me, and I am glad to have survived.

I have thought carefully about the time I spend playing poker and what changes I need to make in the new year. Although I would not call them resolutions or goals, I have come up with some objectives for myself for 2007:

1) Use my time more effectively. That means, among other things, limiting the number of freerolls I play. Although I belong to several poker groups, I rarely enjoy playing the private freerolls they offer. Too many wild idiots who don't understand or care about playing good poker make the freerolls a nightmare. All in with A-6os? Enough!

2) Play at sites and in games where I am actually enjoying the play. Time to stop playing in tournaments at places that seem to always do me in -- bad cards, cold decks, rapidly-rising blinds, wild players ...

3) Spend less time playing poker and more time doing other things. Most importantly, spend more time with my family. As everyone knows, you have to invest time in poker in order to get better. 2006 was a period of rapid growth for me, but now that I have achieved at least a certain level of skill, it is time to remember that life exists outside that monitor in my bedroom.

4) Improve the depth of my understanding of poker, and therefore the complexity of my game. What I seem to need now is to go to one of those poker boot camps run by top pros and become a lean, mean poker machine.

5) Do something major. That might mean winning one of the end-of-the-year competitions for WSOP seats, entering and going deep in a regional event or a stop in the Heartland Poker Tour or similar group, or winning something that would greatly pad my bankroll. I tend to shy away from the massive MTTs like on Full Tilt and other sites, but maybe I should give a few of these a try.

Anyway ... yes, I am still here and doing well. I look forward to a great year of poker in 2007.