Thursday, May 31, 2007

Week's summary heading into the weekend
Thursday brought two cashes out of three tournaments. I got third in the K9 Money Tour event and 6th in the Shark Home Game at Absolute.
The K9 tournament was very challenging since the blinds seemed to increase so quickly. However, I got a decent sized stack at the right time and cruised into the final table. As luck would have it, Shaggy suddenly became a card rack. My final hand: Snowmen in my pocket. I raised and Shaggy called. The only over card was a 9, so I went all in. It turns out the Shaggy was playing A-9os. He hit another 9 just to make it hurt a little more - ha ha!
In the Shark event, I took a brutal beat about halfway through. I had K-10spades and saw a flop of diamond-K-diamond. I checked and was raised by the only other guy in the hand. I went all in and he called off all his chips on a flush draw. You guessed it -- the river was a diamond. Instead of having a huge lead (I was in first, second, or third at the time), I dropped down several places. However, my stack was big enough to take the hit and still keep me in. I eventually went out in 6th place.
The week's blogger tournaments: Bad week. Middle of the pack finishes in each one. Ran into big hands at the wrong time.
Cash tables: Good week at Bodog. Set mining netted me several buy-ins, but I lost a buy in when someone called my raise (pocket Kings) with J-9os!! He paired his Jack on the flop, and called my big raise on the flop and my big raise on the turn. Of course, the river was a 9, and he got my buy-in. I guess that is just the price of playing at the $1/2 NL table on Bodog.
Coming up: Two chances to win a seat at the WSOP Main Event on Sunday -- through the 2006 OPT Money Tour Final (postponed from two weeks ago due to technical problems at and through the World Series of Online Forums (WSOOF) at PokerStars. I was given a free seat in the final event due to my being a previous Online Forum Challenge event winner. Wish me luck!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Wow - Two Wins in the Same Night - a First for Me

I had a day of firsts today. For the first time, I won two multi-table tournaments in the same day. The first was my initial victory in a Shark event. I had come close before, but had never won one. The second was a victory in The Poker Forum Challenge (TPFC) open buy-in event.

How quickly things change. I was heading toward the final table in TPFC freeroll tournament earlier when some guy made an unbelievably donkish call on me and took most of my stack. He was the initial raiser and I called with Q-10 suited - my favorite hand - and saw a flop of Q-6-6. He checked, I raised big, and he called. The turn was a 6. He checked, I raised big, and he called. Now, I didn't think he had the 6 -- maybe playing A-6 suited -- but he could have had KK or QQ since he raised first. If so, I was prepared to lose on that. The river comes -- a Jack. He checked, I went all in with a boat -- sixes over Queens -- and he calls -- with J-J! The mofo went all the way to the river and risked almost his entire stack because he couldn't lay down his pocket Jacks even though there were three sixes on the board, an overcard (the Queen), and I was betting big-time. He gets his freakin two-outer and I was destroyed.

As I sat there stunned at how someone could make such a stupid play late in the tournament (he was not short stacked), someone said "Gutsy call." Gutsy call? It was a fucking stupid call for the ages, and the mofo gets my chips AND the admiration of someone who must have been just as stupid.

I briefly considered my retirement from online poker, and thought of my poker bud, murrythecat, and how he felt after losing deep in a tournament by a boneheaded play. Gawd, it sucks.

I soothed myself with some boneless wings and prepared to play my evening tournaments. Good thing I didn't retire.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Jury Duty - Part II (read Part I first)

The trial started Thursday morning with brief opening statements by the prosecution and defense. The defendant was being charged with breaking into a home and stealing $50 and two guns. The guns were lawfully owned. The big evidence against the guy (a 19 year old "kid", imo, with only a 9th grade education) was a set up footprints leading from his house to the house that was broken into, and a set of footprints leading back to his house. We know that drugs are somehow involved (based on questions asked in jury selection), but that information is being kept from us.

A full week after the break-in (why so long?), a SWAT team (overkill?) shows up at 8:00am at the kid's house, where he lives with parents and five siblings. There may also be a friend at the house. A SWAT team member sees the defendant trying to head out the back door, yet the defendant is the second person to exit from the front door? It did take some time for people to exit, but if you can imagine a SWAT team coming to your house at 8am ...

The prosecution sends up several police to testify. But hmmm ... where is the SWAT guy who saw the defendant heading out the back door? Not there. A specialist in crime scene investigation takes over 100 pictures, including pictures of the footprints and a picture of the door (where the illegal entry took place) , yet apparently didn't measure the footprints? And there was no mention of fingerprints found either inside the house or on the stolen guns? And the worst evidence was the defendant's own statements to police after being questioned after exiting the house during the SWAT raid? So a veteran police officer was able to verbally confuse the kid and get him to "admit" (the kid mixed up names) he stole the guns?

The guns were found in the defendant's little sisters' bedroom about 15 feet away from his door. But they weren't found until a week after the burglary. Couldn't someone else have put them there?

The kid had a hokey story. He said that a friend broke into the house. The defendant said he wanted no part of the break in, but was apparently not averse to dealing in the stolen booty, which appeared to include a pound of marijuana and some crack. Funny -- the victim didn't mention having drugs stolen from his house ... and most jury members actually found him scarier than the defendant.

When Thursday ended, right before closing arguments, I didn't think that I could find this guy guilty of stealing the weapons. He may have been the one to break in, but where was any physical evidence? Did the police even attempt to collect real evidence? Did the other jurors have the same reservations I did, or was this going to look like a repeat of Twelve Angry Men?

Closing arguments were Friday morning. A last-gasp emotional plea by the prosecution was silly. The lead defense attorney, a public defender, was clearly the best attorney in this case. She stated pretty bluntly that even if the defendant had something to do with the attempted sale of the guns, it was not proven beyond a reasonable doubt that he was the one who stole the weapons.

Both sides rest and the jury left to deliberate. One young guy asked to be the foreman and no one disagreed, so he was it. The foreman asked that we take an initial vote to see where we were. The first two votes were Guilty, and I was thinking "uh oh...". However, the initial count was 9-3 for Not Guilty. We started discussing the case, and everyone was speaking at the same time. Our foremen sat on his hands, so I quieted everyone down and asked that we speak one at a time so that everyone could be heard. We went around the table, and practically everyone was thinking the same thing: the kid was involved, but there was nothing to prove that he went inside the house and stole the guns.

We all knew we were missing parts of the big picture and would hopefully find them out after the case was over. The three who initially voted Not Guilty quickly changed their votes after hearing the resons why the rest voted the other way. The deliberation was over very quickly.

We went back into court and the verdict was read quickly. We were dismissed, and it was over.

Today's (Saturday's) local paper had a small article about the case. It appears that the defendant allegedly shot one of the guns into a car a few days after the theft, and the shooting was what led the SWAT team to the kid's house.

My questions: 1) Why was virtually no physical evidence collected after the guns were stolen? Was it because the crime was seen by police as one low life stealing from another? 2) Couldn't they get the kid on anything other that stealing the guns? 3) How did this case ever go to trial with such a lack of evidence?

I doubt that the defendant learned much from the trial except that lies sometimes might work. My guess is that he'll soon either be in prison or a grave. What a way to waste a life.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Jury Duty - Part I
I began a week of jury duty on Monday. I had been summoned two previous times in my life, but never actually was on a jury. After living in town for 13 years, I was somehow "discovered" and got my notice last year.

Day 1 : Report at 9:15 am. We see an instructional DVD and find out that one jury is being selected that day. I am not among the jurors to be interviewed and am dismissed for the day at 10:45 am. Rough day.

Day 2: Report at 9:30 am. I am delighted to see that a woman brought her laptop with a wireless connection and is playing Omaha H/L (for play money) on PokerStars. The guy sitting next to her is a poker player, so I feel a little more at home. We are told that a jury will be selected today, but since we are late in the morning, we will break for lunch early. What a tough life!

The jury selection began after lunch. A group of twelve were called to the jury box, and the first four were accepted by both sides. Two of the second four were excused, and I was called to replace one of them.

I was asked about previous jury duty. I served twice, but never was on a jury. One of the prosecuters asked me several questions, and I was sure I'd be excused. Much to my surprise, both sides accepted me.

The trial has to do with a residential burglary and involves guns and possibly drugs. Being pretty much an innocent guy most of my life, my time in a courtroom has been extremely limited. Tomorrow should be interesting.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Problems with the OPT Money Tour Final - MATH Cash - Why I am a Dumb Shit
The OPT 2006 Money Tour Final was a complete disaster. One or two tables were frozen and never got to play and there were several sitouts. My table had only three and sometimes four players most of the time. It was difficult playing since I was therefore in early position eight out of ten hands. The guy who was in late position eight out of ten hands cleaned up chip-wise.
For some strange reason, the tournament was not immediately halted when the problems were discovered. I wasted a few hours playing, then finaly bailed when I got tired of playing in a tourney that I knew would be replayed.
I finished sixth in the MATH last night. I had a good run of cards and used my nice stack o' chips to put pressure on my table. I was doing fine until the final table. A bad run of cards left me watching the action as the antes and blinds started eating away my stack. My run ended when I called a raise with A-5. The flop brought an Ace, and I was hoping that my opponent had raised with a pair. I pushed all in and was called by A-J. Another Ace came on the turn, but I lost on the kicker.

I am second guessing myself on two moves: 1) The final move; and 2) A time late in the tournament when I laid down a good hand to a substantial all in. It seems like I have gotten burned more often than not in those situations, but if I could redo things, I would probably make the call.

I definitely need to improve my game when down to the final six or so. When I play live tournaments, I generally kick ass at the final table. In online tournaments, however, I have not been as successful. It's funny - I made the final table and cashed, yet feel a lack of satisfaction. I guess that winning or chopping is the only way to get that tournament buzz now.

In other exciting (yawn) news, my softball team squeaked out a one-run victory last night. I got two hits and was safe on an error, so no complaints there. However, I am now paying the price for not having my injured finger looked at when it was first injured. I finally went to the doctor since I am having trouble bending one of my fingers. The X-rays showed that I had a multiple fracture that is not healing correctly. I have an appointment to see a specialist 100 miles away in a few weeks. Lesson: Get to the damn doctor even if you hate going there.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Bad 24 hours of poker
Sometimes this game of poker just depresses you. The following are my lowlights from the past 24 hours or so:
1) Monthly home game - I failed to cash for the first time in ... it has been so long that I don't even remember. Only two highlights of the night: I said "next hand I get pocket Kings." Sure enough - there they were. After I won the hand, someone said, "I'd die if he had Kings." I showed, but everyone is still living. And ... I had pocket Jacks and raised. I was re-raised by a notorious bluffer and called. The flop came J-rag-3. I checked, he went all in, and I called. He had pocket threes and was shocked to see that I beat him top set over bottom set.
2) Online Poker Tour 2006 Free Tour Final - Only one prize - a $5,000 buy-in to a WSOP or circuit event. There were 51 runners and I finished 15th. Made one bonehead play that cost me and ran into pocket Queens at the wrong time.
3) Rounders Radio Bodog WSOP qualifier. Again went out in about 15th place when I needed to finish top five for points. The WSOP is slipping away.
4) $1/2 NL table. I get pocket Queens and raise to $9. Player who seems to be an idiot goes all in for about $80. One other player and I call. The flop comes Jack-rag-rag. I am all in and get called. The idiot player went all in with 4-4. Unfortunately, the other player who called had K-K and then hit a King on the river just to rub it in. Amazing how fast a buy-in can go sometimes.
Sunday is the OPT Money Tour Final with a WSOP main event buy-in on the line. Gee - that would be nice ...
Sunday night is The Big Game - a blogger event with a $75 buy in. Don't know if I will play in it or not.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The Mookie
Full Tilt Poker Game #2442653951: The Mookie - Bayne Wins (18344642), Table 4 - 80/160 - No Limit Hold'em - 23:26:08 ET - 2007/05/16
Seat 1: NewinNov (5,935)
Seat 2: butchhoward (3,400)
Seat 3: DontKnow (3,070)
Seat 4: crazdgamer (4,344)
Seat 5: misogynist (4,693)
Seat 6: sellthekids (3,850)
Seat 7: heffmike (2,620)
Seat 8: smokkee (3,245)
Seat 9: lightning36 (3,710)
smokkee posts the small blind of 80
lightning36 posts the big blind of 160
The button is in seat #7
NewinNov folds
butchhoward folds
DontKnow folds
crazdgamer folds
misogynist folds
sellthekids folds
heffmike raises to 500
smokkee folds
smokkee: never fear, Butch is here !
lightning36 raises to 840
heffmike raises to 2,620, and is all in
lightning36 calls 1,780
heffmike shows [As Jh]
lightning36 shows [Kh Ad]
*** FLOP *** [Kd Tc 2c]
*** TURN *** [Kd Tc 2c] [9s]
*** RIVER *** [Kd Tc 2c 9s] [Qd]
heffmike shows a straight, Ace high
lightning36 shows a pair of Kings
heffmike wins the pot (5,320) with a straight, Ace high
smokkee: standard
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 5,320 Rake 0
Board: [Kd Tc 2c 9s Qd]
Seat 1: NewinNov didn't bet (folded)
Seat 2: butchhoward didn't bet (folded)
Seat 3: DontKnow didn't bet (folded)
Seat 4: crazdgamer didn't bet (folded)
Seat 5: misogynist didn't bet (folded)
Seat 6: sellthekids didn't bet (folded)
Seat 7: heffmike (button) showed [As Jh] and won (5,320) with a straight, Ace high
Seat 8: smokkee (small blind) folded before the Flop
Seat 9:lightning36 (big blind) showed [Kh Ad] and lost with a pair of Kings
Poker sucks sometimes ...
heffmike: I'll get ya next time, bro ...

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

I got tagged ...
Okay, my poker blogger bud Shaubs tagged me, meaning that I have to write seven things that people don't know about me, and then tag seven other people.

1) My senior year in high school, I won second place in my state for Mr. FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America). I was going up against a guy from a top school, so I lied a little about my future plans to seem a little more competitive. Maybe I'd have won if I'd told the truth. My first unsuccessful bluff??

2) I grew up with a murderer who is now finally being tried for a murder he committed over twenty years ago. The original murder trial made national headlines because the guys who were convicted were on death row, then were exonerated. Oops -- almost executed the wrong dudes.

I went to college with a guy whom the press nicknamed "Dr. Death." He was a physician who killed several people. We don't know how many, but there is speculation that the number might exceed 40 internationally.

Get the message? Don't screw with me ... he he

3) I have a degree in Clinical Psychology. Most interesting professional moment was driving in my car with a student who was suicidal, not knowing that she had slit her wrists and was hiding the blood under her sweater.

4) I am addicted to the Polar Pops that you can buy at Circle K gas stations. I get a Diet Coke, then shoot it with a big stream of cherry fountain syrup. Yum!

5) One of my all-time favorite movies is The Valley of the Dolls. It's sappy and crappy, but I still like it, dammit!

6) I have no middle name.

7) In the summer during my college years, I sometimes worked as many as 70-80 hours/week. Never let it be said that I was a lazy shit.

Okay -- time for me to tag some bloggers. I choose ...


Okay, guys -- hope you join in the game!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Is it just me ...
... or should I accept this as regular play in a $1/$2 No Limit Table -- that someone would raise with J-10 offsuit, then call after the initial raise had been reraised by one player and then reraised by another?
Well, that is what someone did at my table. I had pocket Kings and was the second reraiser. The flop came A-K-Q. I pushed hard, fearing to some degree that the first reraiser might have pocket Aces. He, however, folded, and of course, the guy with the flopped straight ended up taking a big chunk of my bankroll at the site when I got no pairing on the turn or river.
Is it just me? Raising with J-10 offsuit? Calling two reraises???

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Made final table of the Mookie, but bowed out first
Tonight felt like it would be the night. I was getting some cards and building up the stack when ... I got the dreaded pocket rockets. Irongirl01 raised, I reraised, she went all in, and I called. A classic: A-A vs K-K. As luck would have it, she spiked a K and left me with only a few hundred points. Somehow I was able to fight back (as I wrote in chat -- lightning36: small stack specialist) and got to the final table. I did not want to see the fold equity go too far, and I went all in with A-6 of spades, counting on everyone folding. Alas, the dreaded pocket kings took care of me for a final time and put me out in 9th place. Disappointing to be the first out at the final table, but I'd rather go out like I did and not see my stack go down to nothing slowly.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Oh no -- I made some guy's donkey list
Life continues as I let the reality of massive debt set upon me. This will be an interesting summer as we prepare to buy one house and clean, fix up, and move out of our old one. Got an estimate on replacing all our sliding glass windows -- ouch! Looks like I will be a living, breathing ATM for the next few months. I am unsure about going to Las Vegas until the smoke clears.

I was on Absolute Poker tonight to register in a private freeroll. I decided to play in a qualifier that cost some frequent player points. I haven't played much on Absolute in months, but for some reason decided to get in. I qualified for the next round, which didn't start for a few hours. I fell asleep and woke up just in time to get in and was reading articles about staging your home for potential buyers.

I got involved in a pot with K-5 hearts just to get a little action while reading. The flop brought an Ace of hearts, another heart, and a rag. Being tired and with no money invested, I decided to chase the nut flush draw and try to get a stack or go to bed. As luck would have it, I spiked a heart on the turn and took in a huge pot, crippling a few players. One player in particular was quite upset, and proceeded to vent. And then ... omg ... he said that he was writing a donkey note on me. Ha ha - haven't had one of those written (as far as I know) for some time. Like I freakin care. Got a few more important things to worry about, bud.