Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Swooning

As GeneD mentioned on his blog on Monday we both played well and got beat by the cards. He at least salvaged a winner. I had a couple of memorable bad beats but everybody does. It's tough when things don't go your way to concentrate solely on the fact you made the right decisions and got your money in good. Don't be results oriented! It's even worse when the Monday night table is rockier than Mars because you only have a limited opportunity to get these guys to put all their chips at risk. You get those statues to move and then they suck out and it stings. That being said, I feel I played strongly enough and I'm just looking forward to this weekend and not focusing on the two outer or the runner-runner that ended my night. Instead, I should reflect on getting back to folding the second best hand as I had to do a couple of times on Monday. Minimizing your losses is a win. In fact, the only mistakes I made were a couple of missed bets at the river (still my leak).

I'll try and upload some pics from Biloxi. Hopefully, I'll be playing too much to have blogging time. In fact, i'm leaving in 20 minutes. Going to buy-in for tomorrow a day early and play that mini-tournament of sorts at Boomtown (3:00).

Monday, August 27, 2007

Playing with dum-dums (WEEKLY COLUMN)

Lunchbox, donkey, dum-dum whatever you want to call them, unfortunately or fortunately, you can't play tournaments without them. I played this past weekend at a venue that has more than their fair share, which usually allows me, a player who is like one level above said dum-dums to have success.

I look down at J10 of spades with two limpers before me. I like to raise with this hand a lot but sometimes I like to limp and hope I hit my flop dead on to a big pot. This time I chose limp with 6 to act after me (9 handed). Limp, Limp, Limp, Limp, Limp, now it's just the big blind to act. We've got 1800 in the pot ($100-$200 blinds). Now this guy, a LAG who fired at every pot no matter the flop (and to his credit was having success as our table was mostly tight), but unlike a player I'd rate as a good lag he'd put too much into the pot when his opponent revealed strength. I also saw him make some questionable decisions. I kind of hope he'd try and buy the pot right there so when I saw him reach for his chips I was happy.

Then he min-raises for another $200. (Huh?) Call-call to me and I'm looking at $200 to win $2400 (just 12-1 on my money). I consider raising, maybe shoving all in but I only have ~$3000 left and I've been in several pots at this place with four or five all-in preflop with just this type of action. My other options for raises didn't seem to merit trying as the pot odds were good for just about any hand for those after me to call.

Two more callers follow me and then another gentleman, makes the second "stellar" raise of the hand. He raises 1k on top. So the pot was 3k and he makes it 4. Needless to say, everybody calls to me. Again, I ask myself what happens if I put it all in? Well, everybody calls, so I call again and the two after me do the same now the pot is 12,600.

I look at the initial raiser and just shake my head. Granted I can understand him wanting to build the pot with hand similar to mine but why didn't he realize as I did that he was just invitating somebody to make a move at the pot? The 1k reraise was just as stupid, the guy actually had the chips to buy the pot but why bet 1k.

Flop comes 9s6c2d. Normally that flop didn't help anybody but with 9 in the hand who knows. The big blind checks, check, check, check, to the 1k raiser. This time he fires another 1k (into the 12,600 pot). Fold-o to the BB. He calls. The rest of us fold. The turn is a 7h. BB checks. Other guy raises 1200 (into the now 14,600 pot). BB folds (what a genuis, two faces at most... AK maybe?).

Hmmm. What would I do if I were in that situation again? I don't know if there is a right answer. The old maxim raise or fold is a maxim because it works and my calling only contributed to the domino chain so probably a raise would have been the better tactic. Still, I have J10 suited with 6 to act and the UTG player and the 2nd to Act had to have something to call. I could have folded...but why fold such a potentially stellar hand?

Dan Harrington talks about calling with mediocre hands (and J10s isn't one) and the inevitable bleed you take on by doing so. Though Gavin Smith or Ted Forrest would disagree, Harrington contends you are basically digging a hole and creating situations where you have to call and keep calling. In a normal game, these calling decisions that you are priced in to make are after the flop and sometimes after the turn. Let's say you got J8 and the flop is 832. You get raised, maybe you try and bet out a continuation bet or maybe you call, but either way more of your money is going into the pot. Let's say the turn is another 2, are you going to fold to a bet now? Probably not, invariably you'll be priced in to call with your top pair medicore kicker. Then when the river brings a K and your opponent value bets, you probably have to at least call. He turns over AK and the only wrong decision you made was playing the J8 in the first place.

Same thing works when swimming with the fish, in these crazy preflop min raises, and reraises that take no account of the pot or the odds their bet would be giving you keep getting priced in. Granted the upside is much better, especially at my venue, because they'll pay you off.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Out of Body experience

We all need them. Sitting at the table, the best possible medicine sometimes is to remove yourself from the play. Imagine you are observing yourself and the opponent and see what you might be missing or what you are giving away. How many times, have you seen somebody bet into the nuts when it was obvious to you (not in the action) the other guy has a MONSTER? Probably more rarely (because everybody that reads this blog is intelligent and a good poker player :) ) how many times have you done that yourself. I'll never forget betting into a guy with the nuts with a miserable hand when the guy next to me said he saw it as soon as the flop hit.

And yeah, this is me a guy who prides myself on being a good reader of people (I do pay the price for that hubris). Just like I couldn't get away from a guy who I put on a full house, playing with Lusky, and called with A high straight. He had pocket Queens. I looked at my AJ and the two jacks on the board and said he probably didn't have one of them. Had I been able to watch the hand from the sideline, I would have known, like Lusky, the guy had the full house, didn't matter which one, he had one. 10s would have made a lot of sense too, maybe more than the Qs he tabled. When I asked if he had KJ and he gave that fake glance of fear at the table I should have insta-folded, like I normally do, but for some reason I couldn't remove myself from the hand or myself. Everybody else knew I should fold, I knew I should fold but I was too close to the action.

I recently read an article where scientists are going to test the near death experience people have where they have an out of body expereince and are over their bodies in the E.R. before being revived. Somebody had a simple but novel approach. High shelves, with funny objects on the top shelf, that can't be seen by the patient below. Thus, next time somebody is revived and retells this experience, they'll probably remember the Viking Helmet and stuffed armadillo up near the rafters in the E.R. if they truly floated above the action. As a skeptic I await the details of this study eagerly. That combined with the information learned from the study linked below one may some day lead to poker players practicing our out of body skills:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070824/ap_on_sc/out_of_body;_ylt=AvzgcGRKUKHsM5Jd9leai5GzvtEF
Also in scientific news, astronomers have discovered a massive hole in the universe.

http://xxx.lanl.gov/PS_cache/arxiv/pdf/0704/0704.0908v2.pdf

Basically there is the huge void of nothingness. No matter, no black holes, just nothing. I could have told them that. It was between my ears on Wednesday night.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

2 losses in a row.

Actually not quite. Parked at Harrahs in the afternoon. Booked a small winner went to dinner with my college friend and a work colleague of his. After beers, hand grenades, more beers, watching a group straight from the office T.V. show drink a magnum of hurricane at Pat O's (3 gallons and $175) during their business bonding trip, I headed back to Harrahs.

Ran into Raceland Brian and we ended up on the same table. Two things: 1. I was very impressed with his knowledge of live poker and online strategy. 2. I was embarrassed at how poorly I played. I suppose early on I could blame the liquor for three or four just bad calls, and later not betting a flop and protecting my hand, but I rationalized things to myself and still made the bad calls. I just played dumb, no excuses.

The table was pretty ripe. There was a kid to our right who called everything, even saying "You can make it $500 but I'm going to see my flops." At one point he told me his was 1400 in. Seemed a nice guy, but he was getting aggravated and asked the dealers to speed it up because of the six dollar time rakes. I thought to myself, if you want to save money don't call $200 all ins or go all in with second pair, still an agreeable fellow. There also were a couple of guys who criticized me for not getting away from bottom set when someone else had top set. Brian quoted them a couple of other times to me and they seemed to only have a loose grasp of the game but they all had more chips than me. Though our table was juicey, the money seemed to chase guys making questionable decisions (not like I should criticize after last night) but the good thing is they were mostly all to our right.

Brian was a great help in reviewing hands, especially the ones I played badly, and sharing with me suggestions on how to bet them better. I know I'm not getting value on the river recently, and I know what I need to do, but hearing: bet fold in those situations, from someone else made it sink in.

I think I actually for the first time in a while surpassed my buy-in limits, so that's a bad night. However, even when I got into a dangerously small stack I was just enjoying learning from Brian. Here's a hand I played like rubbish. I got AJ with a small stack I bet, call, call (the guy that calls everything). Flop is A89. Check, check (me), check. Turn is a k check, I bet, 1 call, call station folds. River is a Q but brings three clubs on board. I bet. Dude raises, I fold.

Not betting my hand after the flop cost me big time. Had I, the call station calls (he was determined to see his "turns" too) and the other guy that beat me in the hand with the flush folds. Then I bet the turn and take the pot there instead of losing it. Really just dumb because why not isolate the calling station? I think I got greedy and wanted to triple up with a vulnerable hand (which is even dumber).

Also made a river call after putting a guy (all in for his last 116) on a full house (when I say putting him on full house there was no need for a read there he wasn't bluffing and his 116 was proof of that) and paid for it.

My reads were off. When I mean off, they just weren't on, didn't seem like I was gettting a feel for anyone. I saw a couple of acting jobs and I called anyway (yeah, I played brutally bad).

Alright time for bed.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

This time

Met up with a college buddy I hadn't seen in years. Parked in Harrahs to play some late night poker. Liked my table when I sat down and was surprised to see as many weak or borderline players there. Guy to my left was good and it became pretty clear we were staying out of each other's way.

Watched a dude chase two gut shot straight draws (wheels) to the river and catch. Hmm. He got a lot of chips and overvalued his Aces with middle and low kickers. Hello target number 1.

Got AQ suited. Raised from UTG. Smart older gentleman called. A passive caller called and then domino time. Big pot. Ace hits the flop and I just knew I was ahead--two hearts. I bet. Old guy calls, target number 1 calls. Threeway to the turn. Brick. I bet big trying to take the pot right there but old guy calls. Guy to my left says "He'll get what he needs on the river has done it all night." Target folds. I already knew I didn't want to see a heart but that cinched it.

River heart. I check. He pumps it all in. Used the same forcifulness he did when he made a set earlier. I know I'm beat. I fold the Ace face up, but conceal my kicker and he shows Kh10h. Money not lost is money earned right. So that's a win.

Little bit later this english guy sits down to my right. He straddles. I'm first to act, I got pocket 7s I call. Most of the table does also. Gets to him and he pumps it large. mmm. I'm getting about 2 to 1 on my money. I could call but I reckon he doesn't have a high pair and wants to drag it right there. I don't want to start another domino effect with middle pair so I reraise. I'm hoping he folds or just calls. I'm thinking AK but maybe AQ or AJ or even A10.

Of course he goes all in. Unfortunately, he's got less than the pot. I study him for a while and my gut tells me AK. I call thinking I'm getting a coin-flip paying out about two to one. Flop is K1010. K on the turn. 9 on the river (three spades). People want KK vs. QsJS or 1010. I tell him the pots his. He shows AK but demands to show my hand. Weird I called him but he never showed to the end... on a bit of a slow roll with that fullhouse and then wants to see what I was playing with. I show my 7s. Table is surprised.

Sit for a bit and get Kings. My favorite! I raise under the gun. Good old dude calls me. Target 1 in the small blind bumps it up. To me. I consider going all in but I really want a call here. I basically pot commit myself and double his bet. Good old dude gets way out. Guy calls.

Flop comes 2710 rainbow. He leads out I push my stack in. He calls. A4 offsuit. Turn is a 5. River is a 3. Dealer doesn't see the straight but one of the other players does and calls it out. I saw it. I get up and bid adieu to everybody. Happy with my reads but not my cards. Oh well.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Next Time part I.

This week's column...

As I sometimes do, I stray from poker, and as I've been on a vacation caused hiatus from the game, now's as good a time as any to sound off on other subjects.

Next time I'm offered to cut the cards I might just respond this way...

"I prefer the whore that is your sister" (said Materazzi) after Zidane sarcastically offered to give the defender his shirt after the match because he had been pulling it.

http://msn.foxsports.com/soccer/story/7133672

-That has to go down as the greatest/worst way to end a career. Kicked off the field in overtime because you headbutted an opponent who taunted you in the World's most important championship. This would be like Mike Matasow hauling off on Shawn Sheikan heads up in the Main Event and getting blinded out while fighting.

Next time somebody owes me some money, I might just...

"... use rattlesnakes as deadly weapons to collect on a (poker) debt have been charged with conspiracy to commit murder, authorities said."

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/08/18/america/NA-GEN-US-Snake-Hit.php

-Granted the debt was something like $60,000 but that's a tad excessive. Still, I got an old aquariam...

Next time in the face of overwhelming evidence that things are going in the wrong direction I will simply say...

"I don't think you make anything of any one thing," Krzyzewski said.

http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/olybb/news/story?id=2980887

-Coach K at his most brilliant. USA basketball has failed in international competition for the last 10 years because they couldn't make outside shots. They lose to a B-Team of USA hoopsters that includes such notables as Aaron fricking Brooks, because they COULDN'T MAKE OUTSIDE SHOTS, and K in all his brilliance shrugs it off with that gem.

"I don't think you make anything of any one thing." What does that even mean? Asked if he's worried about the shooting woes of the U.S. the achilles heel of our international team, and the main reason, the likes of Greece have beaten us recently, and he says that. Bill are you concerned you've called with Jack high and got knocked out of your last two tournaments? "I don't think you make anything of any one thing."

Next time one of my friends tells me a strange baby name I'm going to say my kid's name is going to be...

"@" -- the father claiming the name was hip because of its common use in email and its similar sound to "ai ta," or "love him," for Mandarin speakers.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070820/od_uk_nm/oukoe_uk_china_expressions

-Actually, my first born's name is suposed to be Dean. Middle name Smith. Now, with Dean looking like a CAT 5 about to lay waste to my favorite spring break desinations, I'm a little leery of using it. So maybe I will also us @. Does that have a name? Is it "AT" or something else like "&" is ampersand and "*" is asterisk?

Next time, somebody asks me if I serious about Louisiana seceeding from the union I'll ask if they want 100 kids and 18 wives and the easy life...

"A one-legged Emirati father of 78 is lining up his next two wives in a bid to reach his target of 100 children by 2015, Emirates Today reported on Monday. Daad Mohammed Murad Abdul Rahman, 60, has already had 15 brides although he has to divorce them as he goes along to remain within the legal limit of four wives at a time."

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070820/od_nm/emirates_father_odd_dc;_ylt=Aic1ql8DfZPcmhwaV5.pnfOs0NUE

-If the great state of Louisiana dropped out of the union and formed a country the income from oil related sales would dwarf the $1000 each state resident in Alaska gets, and more closely mirror the wealth of the UAE. Sound good to you? There this guy... Daad (yeah, his name really is Dad) relying on just HIS MILITARY PENSION and support from his government, is talking about reaching the centruy mark in children. We have a problem here with people living off the system, but appartently there you can live the easy life, and pop out 100 kids.

Until next time..

My blog has gone silent

But it won't be for long.

Sorry folks. Been out of town/vacation. Celebrated my Grandmother's 90th birthday and my own. I know I'm getting old, because at some point I became a third of her age. If I get to half, that's awesome for her but bad news for me.

Didn't mean to be a mute. I tried blogging through my phone to the website but I can't get it to work. I'm trying to find the pictures I sent that have gone to limbo. Blogger told me they'd be posted here. Now they aren't in my phone and aren't here. Weird. Was really hoping to get that to work to send chip counts during the Gulf Coast Poker Championship and take some "live" photos.

My grandmother didn't have online access, well she had dial-up that moved as fast as most 90 year olds in their Buicks. For the record my grandmother isn't one. She drives like she's got a lot of places to go and not much time to get there. I've been in her car as the local police have watched her pass about 10 mph over the speed limit and they don't even bother to ticket her. They recognize the lead foot granny as she speeds by yelling "C'mon Pokey," at her neighbors actually worried about speeding in front of the cops. That's the great part of being old. Sometimes you just get away with anything. Of course sometimes you don't. Fortunately for her she has all her faculties about her.

Anyway, I'll get my column up and try to fix my blogging via cell phone.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Monday's column

http://www.gulfcoastpoker.net/column_archive.htm

Wild night of ups and downs

It's white linen night in New Orleans, so I'm expecting some drunk, fairly well off guys to hit Harrahs midnight and later, and for things to get crazy. Even better I'm hoping they bring their girlfriends to show how good they are at Poker and try and bluff at every pot. It's so salivating, I barely can contain myself on the drive over last night. This will be better than New Years where I booked a HUGE winner with guys that couldn't see straight enough to focus on the community cards. The great thing is the late drunk guys get there, at a time most of the older regulars have already left. It's just the me and the young guns vs. the drunk guys, and the young guns will gamble moreso than the older rocks. Perfect for my style.

I plan on arriving at around 9:00. Get on a table. Get some play in, maybe build my stack a little and then just wait. You know what they say about the best laid plans...

I sit down and immediately watch a guy drag an over $2,000 pot (on a 1-2 table). Guy to me right, loses to a flush (with pocket kings). Four way action on the turn which brought the third heart. Two people push in for a couple of hundred, a big stack goes over the top all in and kings dude is left with about 100 as he calls(?!?). Yeah, that flush draw already hit.

Hmmm... I buy in for a little more than normal and prepare to sit back. I get Ak o/s, alright, I'll play that. I fire out a raise, not even knowing what a standard raise is on this table. This table is sinking under the chips in play with three stacks at 1k plus. Apparently the standard large raise is more than what I fire because I get 4 callers. Flop is all spades 10 8 4, I got the As. Couple of bets and the guy to my right who just lost the monster pot, looks down at his cards, and I see he's got the 7d (people protect your hands--don't view them in the middle of the table. I'm not trying to see your cards but I am going to be watching you when it's your turn to act so don't show them). He then goes all-in.

Uh oh. I sit there and figure out at worst, I'm staring at a coin flip. Plenty of money in the middle of the pot to justify me calling. He can't have a flush. He can't have a set. He could be open ended (and I'm big favorite). I call. Even better, I have the best hand. He turns over A of clubs, 7 diamonds (TILT move). Guy at the end of the table who's just rebought is mad about my play which I guess he perceives as stupid. True, to them it looked like this guy could have a flush already or a set and have me dominated. But dumbass showed me the 7 of diamonds. Even if I didn't see it, I made similar calls against guys I know that are tilting for wins plenty of times.

Immediately, I get A rag suited in late position. I throw in some chips to call a small raise. Big Blind bumps it. People call, I'm priced in to call. Flop comes. 8108. I'm ready to fold. I stare down at my rag which is an 8. Oh. I check. Small blind fires, big blind reraises to me. Hmm. I rereraise. Small blind calls, big blind angrily folds. Turn is a brick. Small blind goes all-in. I'm thinking 10-8. He's got me covered. I ask him if he's got 10-8 and he reveals his weakness. I call. He's got K-8. Ship it to the colonel. Lady in the big blind said she folded pocket Aces.

Then, I get the rockets: AA. Ooh-la-la. I lead out. Guy with the 2g in front calls and so do some others. Flop comes A106--two clubs. I fire--2 g calls, others fold. Turn a J. Fire--call. River brings the magic flush card, but it's the A of clubs. Quads. I bet, he folds. "If a queen had come I would have nailed you," he says as I show my pretty foursome. Truth be told, I was scared of a lot cards on that board and felt he was chasing something though I prayed he had a set of 10s or Js.

So, that night started off well--huh? The guy who criticized my AK call can't get over my stack after three quick hands. He keeps bitching to his friend about it, and I think he's targeting me as a weak player. They keep straddling and trying to get chips into play but I'm waiting for a chance to bust one of the bigger stacks. I'm laughing to myself, that I have a target but I'm targeting somebody else. It is a bunch fish in a tank all trying to eat bigger fish.

I've needed a shot to my bankroll so I consider just packing up my chips and leaving that's a great rush. Or sitting out for a while, as my tables has about 4 or 5 regulars and guys I rates as pretty good. Problem is I may have to pick up my girlfriend from downtown so I'm sorta stuck there for an indeterminate amount of time.

I figure I'll play tight. I flop top two pair. Guy turns a staight and I leak out some money. A flush card saved him betting on the river. Though, I respected him enough to think he might have had me so I don't think I would have called a big bet.

I go card dead, which I'm fine with, I don't really want to play. Just killing time until the white linen knuckleheads show up or until I have to chaffeur my girlfrend around. I decide I'll cash out and rebuy at midnight when the idiots start filing in and the last of the solid 40 and 50 year olds have to go night night. I figure we got three hands until the dealer shift. Then I look at pocket Kings.

Sometimes I look at Kings and I love them. Other times I hate them. This time I knew they were going to bring bad things.

...What happened is for another time. In what will really be my first official column on monday I will address pocket kings vs. pocket aces and I'll tell you how not to play kings (that should whet your appetite).

So I angrily get up from the table, and take a walk as I do anytime my emotions fray. I call my man GeneD. I tell him about my knucklehead move and what a donkey I am. And he says, "So you lost all your chips?" "No. I'm still up a good bit of profit." By the way Gene thanks again for the encouragement and perspective. He said, "Dude pick up your chips and cash them in. You still booked a winner on the night. Focus on the positive, you got out of the hand and didn't compound your mistake. Get them next time." That's what I was feeling in my gut, too, but I don't know if I wouldn't have done it had I not talked to him. I made such a bad play I tilted myself and despite all the promise the night held, I needed to take my profit and go home. Not focus on how big my profit was 10 minutes earlier or that my table had a lot of opportunity. (ARGH!!! The guy with 2gs would call a preflop raise of any amount by the way, and chase his hands like that gutshot draw, in the face of any sized postflop or turn bet!!!!)

On the ride back I ran over my hand with Goondingy and again he imparted some wisdom and reinforced some of the conclusions I had made about the situation. Thanks big man, for also making me laugh at my mistake and moving on too. He and Gene, with their experience seeing so many hands, and me still being relatively new to this, really will help me profit from these moments. BTW, Big Ray is a Poker Instructor and he's had students/clients cash in major tournaments, so if anybody wants to tweak their games he's the guy to talk to. I know he's railbirded people to success.

Alright, I get home. Licking my wounds, but focusing on some positives, and now off tilt. Course, what do I want to do--play more poker. I dial up my absolute account, where I had that horrible run (I'm not an online player, I just play low limits to see a lot of hands and to practice multi-table tournaments), and see there's not much of my small initial buy-in left in my account. Oh well, I figure I'll put it all in a three table tournament and then close my account because the play has been so brutal there. I kept enduring suck out after suck out a month ago and decided the emotional trauma wasn't worth the experience of seeing hands, so last night I was prepared to shut 'er down.

I've read, where people have said absolute is fixed. When you first buy-in or reload you get run over by the cards and then nothing as your account steadily leaks away. Then when you get to close to nothing the cards hit you again. So you stick around, leak out cash and then rebuy. I've always thought online cheating theories were hogwash, but I must say, that's exactly what my absolute experience has been. Won a few tournaments and then I can't win a hand that I'm an overwhelming favorite in. Nothing holds. Over and over it happens.

Well, last night the deck runs over me. I get to the final table with a quarter of the chips. We get to three handed because I'm coasting to the good part of the money, and find myself basically the shortest stack but we are all about even. BTW, I win every single race AND my hands hold all night when I do play. It's basically on auto pilot. We get to two handed and I find myself 2 to 1 down as he knocked out the other dude. A couple of passive plays, a failed bluff, and then he's got 43k and change and I'm at ~1k and change.

Yeah, do that math let's call it over 26 to 1. I basically have less than the 1500 I started with and he's got the other 26 players chips. We play for an hour heads up and... I win. It's like absolute wouldn't let me lose. I get huge hand after huge hand. AK, AK, AK, Aq, QQ, KK. And I usually have him dominated to boot. I hadn't played absolute in over a month or two and then that happens? Granted over the hour I made some huge folds, he kept showing me the flushes and straights I wiggled out of, but still it was like the game was programmed for me to win.

So, alls well that ends well. Get out of Dodge with more money in your pocket than you started with and live to fight another day.

BTW, don't put me in the online poker is fixed camp just yet but it's eery the way the cards run on those sites. Certainly different than live poker rooms.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Sorry

Been away from the blog for a bit.

Posting some edited parts of an email I sent to my buddy a couple of weeks ago who played in a live game where he was 90% or better favorite going to the river in 5 or more hands (in a row) and he lost them all--and of course along with that a big chunk of his bankroll.

6 hands in a row, vs. 1 and 2 outers going to the river, you have to start questioning the dealer and your opponent(s). The math on that is just too outrageous. You should barely lose a coin flip 6 times in a row, much less a 90%er.

Cheating is far more common in this game, particularily home or club or side games, then anybody would expect. Get a book about card cheating (I got one at Barnes and Noble) read it and review those hands and other times the math seemed upside down. After I read it, I played at that crooked bar game I told you about and saw just about every angle being played. S..H..A..D..Y. Worst part of it, is it's fairly easy to do.

I've spotted a few of those same "rounders" at honest games and they get their asses handed to them. Yet they win when they control the cards and the game. The guys that took you, do they have any real cashes?

The entire night sounds brutal, I'd probably be in the fetal position. It's simply terrible. I totally know how you feel and right now I feel it too, in a much smaller way. It sucks.

Couple of questions you may hate me for but I have to ask:
1. Did you get drunk?
2. Why did you have so much on you?
If you got drunk and you had 50 large on you, you were a sitting duck.

They could have cold decked you 6 times over.
They could have slipped in a marked deck.
A mechanic could have dealt you anything he wanted and brought whatever river he wanted.
They could have been signaling.
You know there is a fairly easy way for YOU to cut the deck and for them to still give you the cards they want.
Could have been all of the above.

Worst thing about losing is your focus shifts internally. Surprisingly enough, it's easier to cheat a guy on a losing streak than not--if he doesn't suspect foul play.

If this was online... I'd never play online again. And you know what, if you tell me this was through a site, even though it didn't happen to me I'd boycott it.

Now, for the stuff you might feel really resentful for but it needs to be said.
1. We have to set up limits. You should only bring what you are willing to lose. If it was 50k last night than fine, but it sounds like you weren't willing to lose that based on your reaction to losing it. Don't bring it. Don't access it. Don't borrow it.
2. We all lose more than we want to, I don't want to sound two faced because I've been there too (on a much smaller level), but we all have to learn to get up and leave. One terrible beat should be enough. Two almost has to be(especially if felted twice) and three is the last gasp and time to go home. After three strikes you have to LEAVE. Anymore than that and we are facing an unwinnable battle. Winning back what you lost is a terrible mindset. It's far different to get up from the table and buy-in sometime later.