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My Two Cents: Book Reviews

My Two Cents: Book Reviews

Book: Moneymaker: How an Amateur Poker Player Turned $40 into $2.5mm at the WSoP
Date Reviewed: 07/29/05
Note: To buy this book cheap, click on the title above or the picture below.

Moneymaker Book Cover.My last review left a pretty bad taste in my mouth. After a string of prior good reads, Hellmuth forced me to clean my palette and try to move on. Fortunately, not all books are craptastic. Take Moneymakers book for instance...

I finished this book a couple of weeks ago, so I'll be reviewing on the fly, but overall I'd say this one is worth a read. I'm guessing - if you're reading this blog in the first place - you've probably seen the 2003 WSoP coverage for the umpteenth(ish) time, so you figure there's not much more to take from the experience. Not so dear reader. In his book, Moneymaker manages to take you through his life, from childhood all the way through the 2004 WSoP. And just about every moment somehow involves gambling. It's pretty amazing how someone we all figured was a gambling novice, had actually been at it since early childhood.

One of the main thoughts I had throughout the book was, "Damn I'm glad I'm not this dude." How often can you say that about a millionaire? I mean this guy put himself - and his family - through some serious shit. We almost all have debt, and our own problems, but Moneymaker always seemed to find a way to make a bad situation worse. If you are looking for a book to make you feel great about yourself, this book is it. By the time you finish this book, even if you've been in the dumps, you'll find your life is pretty sweet compared to what Moneymaker put himself through. And if you think you have a gambling habit that may be getting out of control, just read this book and compare. If you are anywhere near Moneymaker, seek help.

The Good
Moneymaker takes you through the highlights of the $40 super satellite and the larger satellite that eventually paid his way to the big game. That's insight you can never get from the ESPN coverage. Also, he takes you through the emotions he felt during the week long event. It's one thing to see it play out on your T.V., but it's another to finally know what he was thinking in that moment. Very Cool.

Also, one of my favorite things about the book is it's an easy read. It reads like Moneymaker really did write it and he wanted to keep it simple. You never feel like he just wrote down notes and let someone else write it for him. That's a welcome change from some of the tripe I've read in the past. Moneymaker tells it like it is and then moves on.

The Bad
With the above duly noted, my one qualm about the book is he occasionally digs things into the ground. OK, you're a bad apple, we got it. OK, you don't deserve your wife, check. OK, it's your first live tournament...we get the idea. In trying to remind his readers of the focus points of his life, he over does it just a bit. But considering that's my only critique, I'd have to say we can let that one slide.

So that's it. If you're looking for something to take up some time and give you some insight into the tournament you've seen over and over on ESPN, this is your book. It's a quick read and overall it does the trick.

Next up in the review department- and what I'm currently reading - is Harrington On Hold'em Volume One. So far, thumbs way up. Going forward, you'll notice I will be using this same post for all my book reviews. That way I can keep them all in one place. I'll eventually put a Review tab up top to make it easy to get to...

posted by TripJax @ 3:27 PM, , links to this post




Taking Advantage Of A Supposedly Disadvantageous Situation

Taking Advantage Of A Supposedly Disadvantageous Situation

***Please note, my font is all wack right now, but please read anyway***

During the SNG Challenge, I have focused on the 6 Max NL Turbo SNGs, as I feel they are best suited to the way I currently play. I still like playing regular 10 handed SNGs, but right now my bread and butter is in the fast paced short handed game. I would like to give some background as to why this fits me well, then I will delve into the odd title, Taking Advantage Of A Supposedly Disadvantageous Situation.

As is no doubt obvious, I love to play poker. What I do not love is taking too much time away from wifey and family to do so. I have tried to be a good boy over time and play when the time is right. Still, I recall times where I have tried to fit a quick SNG in, only to find myself under pressure to play too fast or under stress for needing to do something else (help the kids, dinner, etc...). Definite negative EV on my part. Enter the 6 Max NL Turbo SNGs. You can play fast paced poker and, even coming in 1st place, can usually be done within 45 minutes. A very good thing for me.

So after finding the 6 max games, I tried to evaluate if it was, in fact, the best money option for me. Is it better to play 6 people for 2 paying spots, or 10 people for 3 paying spots? Since we all play poker with a focus on taking first place money on every attempt, lets take a look at the numbers. The following examples assume a buy-in of 5.00 plus .50.

If I am playing a 6 max I have to outlast 5 people to cash 21 bucks for 1st place. At a 10 max I have to outlast 9 people, yet I am only awarded 4 more dollars for a total of 25 bucks for the effort. That is a dollar profit for each extra person I have to outlast. Not exactly a big difference in 1st place money considering the extra time and effort you have to put forth in order to make it to 1st place.

And while we all eye 1st place money, sometimes it just isn not in the cards. So what if we come in 2nd place? This may be the best part of playing a 10 max vs. a 6 max. In a 6 max I have to outlast only 4 people to take 9 bucks. This is really only a 3.50 profit, but more importantly it is preservation of that particular buyin. Preserving your buyin by making 2nd place money is a big part of being a successful 6 max player. If you cannot take 1st, at least outlast 4 other people to save your buyin, plus pay off about half of your next buyin with the 3.50. However, at the 10 max, though you have to outlast 8 to win a total of 15 bucks, you get nearly triple the profits 9.50 of the 6 max 2nd place. And that is bove and beyond preserving your buyin. In fact, if you can take 2nd place in a 10 max, not only have you preserved that particular buyin, but you have paid for almost 2 more SNGs with the 9.50 profit.

Lets finish this look at the payoff by reviewing 3rd place money. In the 6 max game, there is no 3rd place money, nor should there be. Paying 50 percent of the players would cut too far into the prize pool, which is why they just do not do it. It would also take a lot of the competitive edge out of poker. The only time paying 50 percent of the players would be a good thing is if there has been a huge sweetener added to the prize pool for whatever reason. As for the 10 max game, finishing 3rd for 10 bucks is basically like finishing 2nd in a 6 max game except you get an extra buck. So why not just outlast 4 people instead of outlasting 7 people?

Moving on. A little more general 6-max info…

I first started playing the 6 max game at Noble Poker and absolutely killed the competition. I figured it was just luck mixed with mild competition, but I have continued the trend over at UB as well. It has made me stop and evaluate my game to see what’s making it work. How bout that…evaluating your game when things are running well. A new concept for me, that is for sure.

So what makes it work for me? First, I am aggressive. I want that pot more than the next person and I am willing to pay for it. More often than not, in a short handed game, if people are staying in the hand there is a good chance they are drawing to a hand. And I am gonna make them pay. This allows me to pick up a lot of small to medium size pots and grow my stack early on while others are pacing themselves. But pacing yourself is not exactly the right style of play for a short-handed fast paced game where the blinds will eat up your stack quicker than normal. What happens more often than not, I take enough small stacks early to afford to take a few chances with drawing hands and mediocre pairs that might turn into sets or two pair later in the hand. So few people at Noble and UB understand the concept of taking down lots of small to medium size pots to pay for those 1 or 2 big hands where you draw to a hand or suck out on a guy to take his stack and knock him out.

Moving on, um, again.

Lets get to the title of the post. You hear, and I am sure have read, this statement all the time about holdem.It is much better to act at or near last in any particular hand. But short handed at a table full of weak or mild players, I relish being able to almost always have good position on players, late or early in the action. Let me explain. If I am late in the table action, sweet, I can get away from hands I should not be playing. I can take advantage of my position by playing it hard if they check or chucking the cards if they bet. But wait, what if I am the small blind or big blind. Sure I am at or near last to act before the flop, assuming no raises, but more importantly, I am supposedly at a disadvantage after the flop by having to act first. I say not so.

You see, I am already being forced to bet at least something while in the blinds. With only six people in the game, there can only be so many callers and it is rare that all 6 players see a flop. So I can usually see a flop for pretty cheap in the blinds and I’m not playing against a large amount of people. Then once the flop hits, I am going to take advantage of being the first to bet into the pot and force the others to make a decision on their hand. I am not going to overpay for a small pot, but I am going to take a stab at it nonetheless. I do not care what my cards are versus the board, chances are I am betting it. And more often than not, the few people left in the pot are folding. Having that disadvantage of having to act first has afforded me the chance to push the action. If somebody comes over the top, and I do not have a hand, I have my answer. If someone calls, I know to proceed with caution. But, depending on the board, I am almost definitely gonna fire at it one more time. Again, more often than not, a bold bet on the turn is often gonna price drawers out and give me the pot, or tell me I need to get the hell out quick if they call or raise. And I know there is the thought that my betting will draw up a red flag and show a pattern on my part. However, the beauty of my no mercy betting is it usually causes players to eventually start calling with mediocre and/or losing hands thinking there is no way I can have a hand every time. But on occasion I have that powerhouse hand and I bet it just the same.

The key to all this is only having 5 or less other players to work against at all times. I almost never feel like I am out of position, because I always have a good game plan no matter where I act. I effectively play my advantageous late position hands and I capitalize on my supposed disadvantageous early position hands. Not something easily done in a 10 handed game.

So that is really what I mean by taking advantage of a supposedly disadvantageous situation. Granted, all of this was written on a whim during lunch, so it may not be very well written or concise, but it is just what I was thinking about my game recently. Playing with the SNG Challengers has caused me to think about and evaluate why I am usually the only one at the 6-max games. Upon further review, I think we are all right. We are playing the games we are most comfortable at, right now. And if that is what works, then so be it. I suppose, or maybe even hope, I might have some folks who disagree with my thoughts and reasoning. I would love to hear criticism or general comments/feedback.

posted by TripJax @ 8:01 PM, , links to this post




No Cheats Last Night...Just A Bully

No Cheats Last Night...Just A Bully

I played a rare live game last night at a buddies house. Interestingly, it was the same buddy and house where I called out the Dirty Rat who was cheating like a punk in my last post. Check below in the prior post for details of that fun experience. Last night was much lighter fare. In fact, out of the 8 people playing, there were 3 extremely nice young women which was a first experience for me. Prior to that point, I'd never played with more than one female at a live game. It was a good time and they were pretty damn good players. To keep this relatively short, I'll hit a few of the highlights of the night...

I haven't updated my SNG numbers yet, but I plan to do that tonight (see SNG link above for details). I also plan to try and play a couple SNG's towards the Challenge with DNasty, GaryC, and Kipper but I think wifey and I are also gonna watch some "TiVo'd" shows that really need to be viewed and deleted. Hell we still have the last four episodes of 24 to watch...how many months ago was that?

If you're looking for about 2 hours worth of reading, head on over to Iggy's blog for his most recent uuuuuuuuuuber post. It may be a few weeks before he posts again so enjoy. Oh and Jordan...I know you miss playing at UB and I haven't opened a BoDog account yet, but I might soon so I'll be able to play with you again soon. Do you still have a Noble account open?

posted by TripJax @ 7:58 PM, , links to this post




You Dirty Rat

You Dirty Rat
With the SNG Challenge more than halfway complete, it was inevitable that the collusion word would make it into the conversation at some point. I was happy to see Jordan and DNasty jump right into the fray with posts directly involving cheats and cheating. Let me go ahead and state now for anyone who makes their way upon my blog. Cheaters can kiss my ass. With that, I offer the one poker cheat story I have...

I was a scrawny twelve year old looking for action. She was 49, a used and abused hooker, and looking for a quick payday. Wait, wrong story...

I met Quiet Storm (that's his poker name) at some point in 2003, I think. I'm bad with dates and times, so we'll just leave it broad like that. He had been coming to our tournaments and cash games at the Garage Mahal for a while which was cool. He works for a big biotech company in the area. He and few of his work buddies ran a cheap home game about once a week, though it was often speratic. At some point the buy-ins and limits at the Garage Mahal were becoming too pricey for my comfort, so when QS invited me to one of their home games I jumped at the opportunity. His games were more about having a good time and dropping $5 or $10 for a couple of quick SNG's and chance to walk out with maybe $60 if you win. No big deal, just good times.
On maybe my 3rd game with them, we ended up at one of the guys houses, except this time there was a new guy. I figured that was all good with me...more money to win...plus I was a new guy just a couple of weeks ago. He ended up sitting to my right. On the first game of the night I got knocked out about middle of the way through - must have been a bad beat *cough* - so I was able to sit back and watch the action from a distance. On one particular deal, towards the end of the first game, I noticed when it was the new guys time to deal, he was bringing the cards to his lap to shuffle them. And then it happened. After a few shuffles this shitbag would quickly look through the deck and find similar cards and put them on top. Then he would count out the places to where the cards would hit his hole cards as well as the flop, turn, and/or river. That sounds like a lot to do in a couple of seconds, but he was good. It didn't take him but about 10-15 seconds to do the whole thing. He had two problems though. One...he bobbed his head while he was counting the cards under the table. Two...he didn't realize I was checking him out every time it was his turn to deal. Everything seemed to make sense at that point. It seemed like the dude was hitting flops left and right and now it was all coming together. Unfortunately for me and the guys playing, I had caught on to this too late for the first game...he ended up winning it.
During the break I told this guy Jack about what I had seen and asked him to keep a look out for me. I didn't want to be a jack ass and call somebody out on cheating and then have no one believe me if he denied it (which every cheat is gonna do...cause they're a cheater). It didn't take long for Jack to be able to see what was going on. And he was pissed cause he was then thinking back to a hand where his set of nines was beat by a set of Queens. Now we were all getting drunker by the minute and were all having a great time which is probably why this could have easily been missed. Unfortunately for fuckstick, I was on the ball that night. His girlfriend had come by to see him which was gonna make what was about to happen that much more awkward, but obviously needed.
After only a few hands into the 2nd game, it happened. Jack was still trying to be 100% sure about the situation, but when the dude shipped a sizeable pot to his stack with his second Quad hand of the night, Jack flipped. He immediately walked over to the radio and TV in the nearby living room and shut them off. He came back into the dining room, pointed to the guy and said, "You're a fucking asshole." Ermm, it was on. There was the accusation, the denial, the reaffirmation (by me) and then threats of taking it "outside." The dude denied it for about 5 minutes as we argued and yelled back and forth, and then finally he said he was leaving. We made him return the money from the first game and then he and his girlfriend were gone with the wind.
At that point, the games were basically over. I apologized for what had just happened, but reiterated to each player that - without a doubt - the dude was cheating each and every one of us. At first, most of the guys weren't so sure if I was for real, which is why I'm glad I pulled Jack into the situation so he could back me up. And back me up he did. I wasn't expecting the confrontation that ensued, but I'm glad it happened. Once the dust had settled, I figured that was the last time I would ever play with those guys. But instead, it was as if it made even more sense to be playing with them. In the end, it became a great story to tell, and I haven't seen the dicksmoke since.
To this day, I still wonder...who the fuck would want to risk being caught and possibly getting their ass beat at a $5 game? What an idiot.

posted by TripJax @ 8:21 PM, , links to this post




1-800-GOT-JUNK?

1-800-GOT-JUNK?

Two stories:


(as posted by me on Kicked In The Junk earlier today)

First:
Yesterday I was on the way back from lunch with 4 fellow employees when the following conversation about poker came up. As set up, there were 4 young guys in the car (including myself) and 1 older woman. And to my local buddies who read this blog...no I did not start the conversation...

Woman: "I thought you had a poker game at your house every night. 24/7."
Poker Buddy: "Noooo...24/7...you must be thinking about the size of my junk."
Woman: "No that would be 24 divided 7."
Me & Other Two Guys: [Laughing Asses Of]
Me: "She just called you out on the size of your junk dude."



And then it happened. This is the "I shit you not" portion of the story. Not even 5 seconds after the above exchange, the following truck passed directly in front of us turning into a business complex...


Obviously I don't mean this exact truck and the Business Junkees on top, but it was a similar truck with the huge 1-800-GOT JUNK? on the side. In that moment, I was speechless. Inside, I was losing it, but I knew only my poker buddy - and you dear poker bloggers - would truly get how funny it is. I finally said, "check out that junk truck", but it was all lost in the laughter of the situation. For me, however, I knew it would make for an excellent post on Kicked In The Junk.

Second:
I made lunch for myself today instead of going out to eat. I've been trying to eat better and spend less money so it was the right thing to do. At the building I work in, there's a lobby where a few drink machines and tables are set up so you can eat and look out a huge window overlooking the parking lot and park. No one ever really sits there and the machines barely get any use because the lobby is kind of out of the way for most people. For the most part, every suite has its own drink & food machines so this one is kind of pointless. However, those tables are where I eat whenever I make my lunch and want to get away from the office. Typically I will have something to read - often printouts of my fellow bloggers posts - and today was no exception. Some capital writing out there by you guys. But that's not what this story is about.

As I was finishing up lunch I felt a rumble in the bronx (stomach felt a bit odd) and I suddenly knew some gas wanted to get the hell out of me ultra quick. I knew I was no where near a bathroom, but felt I was in a pretty safe place to drop a bomb and flee the scene of the crime. I looked to my left and right...I checked in front of me and - most importantly - behind me. All was clear so I let the air down there run its course. And though I tried to avoid any "noise", my body clearly didn't get the memo cause out came a monstrous "bbbbbrrrrrrrrrrrrr." Still, I figured, nobody will ever know. And as that nobody will ever know statement hit my brain, fear struck my entire being. I had forgotten to look up. The tables were on the 2nd floor and there was a 3rd floor balcony over looking them. As I began to look up I was hoping beyond hope that no one was there, but I was also resigning myself to the fact that - because it's me we're talking about here - someone would obviously be standing right there. But I was wrong. Unfortunately for me, I was wrong because there were TWO people leaning against the balcony looking down right at me. Two women...one probably my age and the other probably in her 60's. I shook my head - accepting full responsibility for my actions - then stood up and walked out. As I write this now I am laughing, but in that moment, I was waiting for someone to come around the corner and kick me in the junk for being such a dumbass. And for the record, it wreaked something fierce.

Such an idiot.

TripJax

posted by TripJax @ 8:59 PM, , links to this post




The Man Behind The Mouse

The Man Behind The Mouse

I was reading Kipper's most recent post where he "revealed" the person behind the cards and I figured that would be something I should do. I've dropped pictures on this site on occasion, but never anything formal. My wife recently asked why I had never put a pic of her up, yet I would put up pics of half-nekked models and such. I told her the internet isn't exactly where you go flashing your life story without a little thought behind it. When put that way she definitely understood. At the same time, I think it would be nice to give those folks who take an interest in reading this here blog a chance to see the man, woman, boy, and baby girl behind the avatar. We can't all hide behind the guise of midgetry and all its tiny goodness. Erm, I'm pretty sure midgetry is not a word, but you get the idea.

So, without further delay, I offer JayNatJax, Nat&Jax, and Lily. Now I should first explain that the first two pics are a couple years old, but we're lazy and haven't scanned any pics in ages. Definitely something we need to do. Jax is now 4 years old so he obviously looks nothing like the the baby in those pics. I had to go with the few pics I had on my computer so this is what you get. I actually posted a pic with Jax in it a few months ago that a lady took of us at a baseball game this season. Lily is now 3 months old, but she already looks entirely different from her first couple of days when that pic was taken. She actually looks almost exactly like Jax did as a baby, with a few minor differences. Finally, as for my wife, she is the absolute shit. Nuff said.

On the poker front, I've been playing very few SNG's, but continued a decent trend when I have played. Last night I played one 6 max NL SNG along with DNasty and Jordan. I think DNasty ended up being taken out by Jordan and - as if it was meant to be - I got heads up with Jordan. A few hands in we got into a huge hand where he had something like 2 pair or a straight, but I had hit my flush on the flop for the win. That pretty much gave me 90% of the chips and I was able to stave off defeat when I outkicked him on the final hand. Good times were had, no doubt. That's it for me, for now...

posted by TripJax @ 7:56 PM, , links to this post




Guess I'm The Guy You Want To Bubble Eh?

Guess I'm The Guy You Want To Bubble Eh?

I don't want to write much these days cause I don't want to alter the way things have been going at the tables. Damn I hope that didn't count as writing about it. Better leave it at nuff said.

I'm currently reading Moneymaker's book (see link under At The Moment) and I've been enjoying it. I'm less than half way through it and so far impressed. This guy was all kinds of fugged up before he started this tourney. Makes me feel that much better about my poker playing after reading the sad state of affairs he put himself in. I'll do a full review once I'm done.

I'm still very much enjoying the SNG Challenge and have updated my numbers tonight for anyone interested (SNG link above). I only played one SNG tonight, but I maximized my profit by winning it. In a 6 max NL SNG with top 2 paying I was the short stack with 3 left. The other 2 were just about even. I jokingly typed, "Guess I'm the guy you two want to bubble eh?" No response. Not long after those two got into a battle of a hand and the slightly lower stack ended up losing kicker style. I thanked the winner of the hand and then proceeded to climb the mountain that was his chipstack. It was 7500 him, 1500 me. Somehow, after about 7 straight All-Ins where he folded, I finally got him to call my All-In with an inferior hand. I think I had A Q and he had A 9. After doubling up I immediately went all in again with 6 6 and again doubled up when he called with Q 9 and didn't improve. Just like that I was ahead of him and had the momentum. Only a few hands later I picked up 9 9 and - after he made a hefty raise - I pushed my stack in. He called with 2 2 and didn't improve allowing me to steal that one. From short stack near the bubble to taking it down. Was a good feeling, no doubt.

Gonna end this swiftly, but just a few more items of note...GaryC was gracious enough to play in the 6 max SNG and - like the true challenger he is - busted when his hammer attempt missed its mark. I was away from the table at the time, tending to our 3 month old yacking up, but I was proud to hear the attempt was made when I returned. Soon enough the hammer will break bad on some candy asses. And Jordan, I promise I'm not avoiding you at the SNG tables. The last few times we've attempted to play at the same table it hasn't worked. Will happen soon enough though I'm sure. Still, your swift comments at our tables somehow make the donkeys want to call us even more often so keep it up. And tell fiance Kim I said fushizzle.

posted by TripJax @ 2:50 AM, , links to this post




SNG Challenge Update

SNG Challenge Update

I was able to get in 2 SNG's towards the SNG Challenge (see SNG link above for details) yesterday. The first one didn't go so well. I think I finished 4th. The second one I decided to play pretty late - just before bed - which typically doesn't work so well, but this time everything seemed to go my way and I ended up taking it down. I'm currently at $101 and looking forward to seeing the updated numbers from the other challengers.

For this challenge I've taken a Quality over Quantity approach. I've only played in 8 SNG's so far, but I've cashed in 6 of them. I've only played the 6 max Turbos and I think my aggressive style works well there. I hope the trend continues cause I've got some work to do to catch up with GaryC as well as Kipper who is doing well too.

Gotta keep this short, but I'll be posting again soon. I've been making some minor changes to the site and will explain on my next post. Oh, and please disregard the html screw up on my template picture at the top. It's from a picture in one of my posts that is too big and I just haven't gotten around to fixing it.

posted by TripJax @ 7:19 AM, , links to this post




Awesomely Bad Poker

Awesomely Bad Poker

I've been playing poker and watching Awesomely Bad Love Songs on VH1. I haven't played Bad, but I sucked out about 3 times on players. One guy I sucked out on twice in a row, with the last one ending his game. I ended up overplaying my last two hands and - when I went all in on the flop on my last hand - had the guy write it was over before he hit the call button. He had flopped the nut straight on the rainbow flop and - although I had bottom pair - I was toast when no more help came. Still, I picked up more money towards the SNG Challenge (see the SNG link above) with my 2nd place finish and I'm glad to be getting some poker play under my belt.

For my last post, I was finalizing the words just minutes before heading off to make a flight for a managers meeting in Virginia. My expectation was to play some poker at night once the festivities were ending, but the resort didn't have the same plan. On top of the $330 charged per night, they were lame enough to charge $10 a night if you wanted to connect to their dial up. Lame. They should just pony up for WiFi, add a buck to the room fee and look quite shining by offering the service as "free." Instead they look like money grubbing bastardos. So, not only did I miss out on some extra poker play, I couldn't click on Pauly to keep up with the latest action of the 2005 WSoP. I was able to catch up last night when I got home, and was pretty surprised to see who was at the final table. Only a couple names I recognized. Still it sounds like once the editing is done and it is TV ready, it should be a blast to watch.

I'll be updating my numbers on the SNG link above so check them out soon. I didn't have time to do it before I went on the meeting and I want to get a few more games done today before I make the update. It's good to be home and hitting the felt. Also, I just picked up Moneymaker's book from the library so I'll be reading it this weekend as well. Until next time, may the felt be with you.

posted by TripJax @ 8:09 PM, , links to this post




Damn These Guys Are Good

Damn These Guys Are Good

Well the SNG Challenge is proving to be tough, but extremely fun. I've gotta say - though I haven't seen a ton of play from the other challengers - what I have seen has been impressive. GCox25 is tearing it up and Jordan has been working it too. I need to put a little more time into sweating DNasty, Kipper, and SteelerJosh. I gotta say, I think my game is better when I've got people watching and just having people around to relate to. It has been really great chatting with these guys. Best line so far (translated loosely)...

HighOnPokr: I'm blind.
HighOnPokr: I'm using a braill keyboard
Opponent: lol
HighOnPokr: lol is lumpy

I think I about shit my pants when I was reading that discussion. So good.

A few quick highlights from yesterday...

I've been working on clearing the UB bonus in the morning and yesterday I hit a straight flush on the flop against a guy and was bummed to only get a small pay off from him. Unfortunately he didn't catch anything so he didn't pump the pot. It was nice to hit the straight flush though. I think it is maybe my 3rd time in my real money history.

In one of my 3 SNG's last night, I had 9 10 in the big blind and hit trip 10s when the flop came 3 10 10. A guy pushed it all in ahead of me and I made the easy call. He had 3 J and proceeded to catch runner runner J J to take Jacks Full against my 10's full. He couldn't get enough of his incredible luck, but I took him out a few minuets later and finished 2nd.

Here are my current numbers as of 07/13/05...see the SNG link above for more detailed numbers.

Start: $55
Current: $84

I'm flying out this morning for a managers meeting at a sweet resort in Virginia. I should be able to play tonight, but if you see me 2 or 3 tabling the ultra low limit cash games, I probably won't be able to chat much. I really want to clear this bonus and that is the best way for me to do it with the least risk. However, if I'm at a SNG table I'll be ready to chat and I'll be searching my fellow challengers out to sweat via the e-rail.

posted by TripJax @ 11:32 AM, , links to this post




SNG Challenge Tracker

SNG Challenge Tracker

This post will track my SNG Challenge numbers. Going forward, use the SNG link above to keep up as it will direct you back to this post which will be updated periodically. Good luck to GaryC, Jordan, Kipper, SteelerJosh, and DNasty, the 5 other challengers. I will copy/paste my results straight from the UB Real Money Transaction History link under My Account).

Start Date: 07/11/05 End Date: 08/07/05 Numbers Below Last Updated: 08/07/05 3:18pm

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Start: $55.00
Current: $137.00


6 Max
1st - 6
2nd - 4
3rd - 2
4th - 3

10Max
1st - 0
2nd - 2
3rd - 0
4th - 1
8th - 1


08/07/05 01:12:23 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
08/07/05 01:12:23 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

08/07/05 12:50:59 PM SNG-Buyin -$10.00
08/07/05 12:50:59 PM SNG-Buyin -$1.00

08/05/05 09:10:55 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
08/05/05 09:10:55 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/30/05 02:15:56 AM Sit and Go Award $15.00
07/30/05 01:02:32 AM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/30/05 01:02:32 AM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/29/05 11:53:23 PM Sit and Go Award $21.00
07/29/05 10:40:43 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/29/05 10:40:43 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/27/05 10:01:04 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/27/05 10:01:04 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/24/05 08:58:16 PM Sit and Go Award $9.00
07/24/05 08:27:14 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/24/05 08:27:14 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50


07/24/05 07:55:09 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/24/05 07:55:09 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/20/05 11:30:10 PM Sit and Go Award $21.00
07/20/05 10:48:26 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/20/05 10:48:26 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/19/05 09:50:08 PM Sit and Go Award $21.00
07/19/05 09:05:01 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/19/05 09:05:01 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/18/05 10:32:10 PM Sit and Go Award $15.00
07/18/05 08:55:53 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/18/05 08:55:53 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/18/05 12:22:00 AM Sit and Go Award $21.00
07/17/05 11:41:07 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/17/05 11:41:07 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50


07/17/05 06:05:25 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/17/05 06:05:25 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50


07/16/05 06:35:15 PM Sit and Go Award $9.00
07/16/05 05:50:55 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/16/05 05:50:55 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/16/05 04:50:59 PM Sit and Go Award $9.00
07/16/05 04:14:07 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/16/05 04:14:07 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/12/05 11:05:06 PM Sit and Go Award $21.00
07/12/05 10:26:28 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50
07/12/05 10:26:27 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00

07/12/05 10:25:16 PM Sit and Go Award $9.00
07/12/05 09:51:51 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50
07/12/05 09:51:48 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.
00

07/12/05 09:01:15 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00
07/12/05 09:01:15 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50

07/11/05 10:46:22 PM Sit and Go Award $21.00
07/11/05 10:03:59 PM SNG-Buyin -$0.50
07/11/05 10:03:58 PM SNG-Buyin -$5.00

posted by TripJax @ 7:15 PM, , links to this post




It's Challenge Time

It's Challenge Time

Well I've been playing over at Ultimate Bet the last week and things have gone quite well. I was able to transfer some money out of my Noble account over to UB not only to take advantage of a decent bonus, but also to prepare for the SNG Challenge I will be a part of. To get my feet wet - after depositing $110 - I played a $5 SNG the night I opened the account and ended up winning it. Me likey dat. I haven't played a SNG since as I've been working the cash games trying to work off the bonus.

Through PokerSourceOnline (referral code tripjax) I was able to get a 55% sign up bonus (15% more than normal) as well as a free set of poker chips once I clear the requirements. Erm, OK so you want to give me a free set of chips and a higher bonus for signing up to a site I was already gonna sign up for? Deal! And once I clear the bonus your going to give me more PokerSourceOnline points towards more stuff. Erm, deal! Basically I need to amass 500 ultimate points in order to fully clear the bonus and receive the set of chips. To do so, I've been playing ultra low limits, but multi-tabling. I basically want to risk as little as possible while clearing the bonus.

This process has proved successfull so far as I've cleared 170 Ultimate Points and I'm up to over $140.00 (though that includes my SNG winnings). In essence, I've either been break even or up for the majority of my sessions. And the few times I've been down the 55% bonus has made up the difference. I've yet to have to re-buy which is nice, but numerous times I've been down on one table, but up quite nicely in another one to round things off. The bonus releases as you accumulate points which is great for seeing your bankroll rise or at least keeping your losses from hurting you too much. So far I'm very impressed with their site.

On average I'm releasing .10 of Ultimate Points for every hand I play. That's roughly 5000 hands to play in order to clear the 500 points, but there are ways I've been clearing it quicker. For one, if you start a new table (are first to sit at a cash game table) you receive 50% more bonus points than normal. Plus, like I mentioned above, I've been multi-tabling so the points clear much faster. I plan to be done with the bonus by next Friday and I'm told by GaryC that the chip set is mailed pretty quickly which sounds great. Again check out PokerSourceOnline via the link above and use tripjax if you wanna help a brotha out. I plan to continue using them in the future and will be checking out their frequent flopper (rake back) program after I'm done at UB.

My favorite parts of UB are the clean look of the rooms, the mini table view which is great for multi-tabling, and the fold and show option which I haven't seen anywhere else. My least favorite is the chat which is somewhat cumbersome. I also don't like how you can't multi-table more than 3 tables. Why have a mini table view and then limit the players to 3 tables? Having stayed around the ultra low limit tables I haven't really branched out so time will tell if I find any more stuff to praise or complain about.

In the last few days it has been a pleasure to sit at the tables with GaryC and Kipper, fellow bloggers as well as SNG Challengers. I figure I'll be seeing more of them as the challenge ensues. Thanks GaryC for sitting with me a while as I grind away at the bonus. I know you didn't really want to be at that table, but you did it to hang with a fellow blogger which was cool. Also, I enjoyed our chat Kip. For me, it was nice to play at just one table for a while as the multi-tabling can do a number on ya.

So it's 3 a.m., I'm butt ass tired, and it's way past my bedtime. Me thinks I'll concede to the power that bezzzzzzzzzzzz

posted by TripJax @ 6:20 AM, , links to this post




I'm Torn...

I'm Torn...

Part of me wants to be cryogenically frozen - Ted Williams style - so I can be awoken from my deep freeze once the ESPN coverage of the 2005 main event is up and running religiously.

Another part of me wants to refresh Pauly's site every 45 - 60 seconds so I can get up to the minute news. Is Wil doing well? Did Vahedi just fart? Is Clonie wearing a bra? I need to know damnit!

I might as well suck it up and not be that guy...you know the one who covers his ears and gets pissed when somebody starts talking about something they don't want to hear. I will not be that guy...I will not be that guy...I will not be that guy.

posted by TripJax @ 7:08 PM, , links to this post




Better To Be On A Rush Than In One

Better To Be On A Rush Than In One...

Was my response to a guy who wrote, "I'm in a rush", after losing half his stack to me while playing Q 4 offsuit in a hand he had no business being in. He followed that comment up with "I gotta go soon." I just don't get why people try to justify horrible play by saying they are in a hurry. Why would you pay good money to play a game that you know you will ultimately lose. We had only been playing for about 5 minutes when this hand occurred so he was basically flushing his buy-in down the drain. Even if he did well and doubled up a few times, the averagle SNG is still between 30 - 50 minutes so he should have never registered. I won the SNG so thanks for the extra chips you e-tard. Note: e-tard is an excellent word my buddies recently created for those folks in the world who are computer illiterate and perplex us all each and every day. In their business, they deal with e-tards every day and though it might not exactly fit with my situation, I just had to use it cause I love the word. E-tard (Copyright Alx & MTW 2005).

It Vexes Me...I'm Terribly Vexed

Geez, two Gladiator quotes in one week. I gotta watch a new movie. I'm vexed cause I had a post vanish today. I had a post titled Liquor In Arrears that I wrote and posted on July 3, 2005. It was around for the last couple of days and then today, when I did the post about the Goofball winning a WSoP seat, it disappeared. All I did was add a new post so I'm not sure what that's all about. If you read my Liquor In Arrears post let me know so I can be sure I'm not imagining things. I did drink a good bit of the sauce the night before so I could have been imagining things, but I swear it was their and had a hottie in a sweet Independencd Day "outfit."

Harrington On Hold'Me

Last night, while searching online for good deals on Harrington's new book, Google gave me something to laugh at. When I typed in Harrington On Hold'em it noted Did You Mean: Harrington On Hold'Me?. See below for a screenshot and click on it for a larger picture.


Now this might not be too funny for most - though the thought of Action Dan holding me is quite odd - it made me think of a quote that comes up quite often around our house. You see back when my son was just learning how to talk, he became very sick for quite a while and could not hold any food down. It got so bad we had to move him out of his room and into the living room on a cot with a trash can by his side at all times. At one point in the night - while sleeping next to him - he went into one of his worst consvulsive moments as he yacked all over the floor and himself. After it was over it was clear he truly didn't understand what was going on. Though he was close to tears (as was I at the moment), rather than cry he held out his arms towards me and said, "Clean Me, Daddy." He said it in such a way that was so sincere, yet so funny I ended up busting out in a half laugh/half cry as I grabbed a hold of him. When I told my friends the story, it took on a life of its own...whenever there is an awkward or potentialy bad situation, the first words spoken are "Clean Me, Daddy." What's that got to do with Harrington On Hold'Me? I don't know or care, but I had to tell the "Clean Me Daddy" story.

Did You Mean: Paris Hilton IS A Ho?

When I happened upon the Google Harrington On Hold'Me search noted above, my buddy MTW was at the house and we both got a good laugh out of it. Thankfully, he took it to a new level and I received the following comment and picture in an email from him this morning...
More of Google thinking for you, this time right on target. This might be a new Genre to explore...


OK that's it for me. Two posts in one day is not normal for me so I better stop while I'm ahead. I'm still playing to pay for the beach trip and so far things are going well. I've already cashed out a portion of my Noble bankroll and already built it back up to my pre-cashout level. That is a damn good feeling.

posted by TripJax @ 8:07 PM, , links to this post




Oh To Be So "Lucky"

Oh To Be So "Lucky"

Goof Puts Man In Major Poker Tourney

I call BS on this one. So he clicks on a tourney and doesn't realize it is a $100 satellite to the WSoP main event until half way through it. Me thinks he was just setting himself up for his wife taking it easy on him for wasting $100 on poker and then ended up winning the damn thing. Then he had some fantastic story to tell and stuck with the whole $10 BS.

Or I could just be giving the guy a hard time and he really did goof up. Either way, it's just more good press for the WSoP so that's a good thing.

posted by TripJax @ 1:34 PM, , links to this post