Around the Horn

Bullet Points:
*WSOP-C Regional Championship, Chemist, Friedlander, and poker musings...
*Rapture
*FeltStars
*IPOs (LinkedIn)

**Put the results up under the Poker News on the GCP front page. Was rooting hard for the Chemist to win the Regional Championship. The guy is a gentleman and has been very generous to me in the past with advice via email. I have a really high opinion of his play so I wished he ran a little better when it mattered. He was first off the final table but did get some money back. I know he won a seat in the 1k mega I played in so it was more the 2k profit a 12k prize might first indicate. Congrats Jeremy. AJ Jejelowo has to be one of the more fun names to say. No idea if he's any good at poker but I know he was aggressive. Now, was he Darvin Moon or Jerry Yang aggressive or Tom Dwan aggressive? Time will tell.

The guy that came in second Gary Friedlander was on my starting table at the 1k mega. He's got some results, and I have to say I thought he picked his spots well in the short time I played with him. We had a couple of lags on my left, and he was on a corner of older tight players. I believe he knows how to milk his look a bit (in that he just radiates he's only betting with the nuts) because he seemed to mix it up at just the right moment. For whatever reason, I felt like I had a read on him, I probably didn't considering how well he did.

Might have been the second version of the Madsen effect. As I've stated before on here, the year Jeff Madsen won POY, I started on a table with him at the WSOP, and he looked like a kid that was in too deep in the pool. At that point, I didn't know but he already won two bracelets. It looked like he agonized over every decision. And his acting got him calls and probably folds throughout our time together. I would venture a guess that he's had a tougher time duplicating his results for similar reasons that Jaime Gold has found it harder to win. Gold's schtick was seen by the world and once exposed, solved. Madsen's schtick was that he was a much better player then he looked. Once everybody found out he was good, the same things didn't work. Also, when a heard of inexperienced looking Internet players followed him to the live felt, everybody learned that youth or awkwardness in live poker wasn't to be taken as ineptness anymore.

I wonder if the elite cash game players understand that exposure, except for endorsements, is not necessarily a good thing. Maybe it's for that reason many of them avoid possibly being televised in big tournaments. It's not just that they can make more on the side games but they have a realistic and perhaps some a latent fear of being exposed? Maybe? Maybe not?

**So, the Rapture didn't happen. The people that thought it would are in shock. Still say they just go with the story that it did happen but there were so few free of sin nobody noticed. Maybe they could point to Randy Macho Man Savage as one of the few. BTW, R.I.P. I'll never snap into a slim jim again, with out spitting a piece out in honor of my favorite member of the MegaPowers. Back to the Rapture... loved this line from the reporting after the fact:

"Camping's PR aide, Tom Evans, told the L.A. Times that the group is "disappointed" that 200 million true believers weren't lifted up to heaven on Saturday while everyone else suffered and eventually died as a series of earthquakes and famine destroyed the Earth."

Yes, I'm sure these benign nutcases, benign except for all the fallout of the followers that blew everything they had in anticipationg of the rapture, really were "disappointed" that everyone else didn't suffer and eventually die in an apocalyptic Earth. Love it when an agenda pierces through the comical veil of media unbiasness. The way Liz Goodwin frames it almost makes it out to suggest the pious want the harm to befall the unbelievers. No, they wanted heaven, safety, and confirmation of their beliefs, not for evil to befall the nonbelievers.

I mock these guys because it's ludicrous for them to think they can pinpoint the date, not for their core beliefs. Religions that don't stray from the central message and turn scripture into hate are some of humanity's most beautiful and noble sentiments. I hope there is a heaven, and I hope I am worthy to be there one day. I don't begrudge anybody believing that either even if it's under a radically different lens. Kind of get the feeling Liz Goodwin doesn't like the idea that she might get left behind one day. Article here.

**We've become affiliates for FeltStars. I have no idea if they segregate their funds or if they will be in a position to repay their players should Black Friday happen to them. I plan on playing on there to stay sharp, much as I used some of the money I've gotten back from PokerStars and still haven't received from Full Tilt. We aren't "endorsing" the safety of the site or of your money by becomming an affiliate. We don't know any of that or have any intimate knowledge of FeltStars or Merge Network. We do know that FeltStars has been good to players from our area of the country, so if you are already going to gamble on a site that still services U.S. Americans we hope you use our banner to do it (we profit as affiliates by the people that sign up through us). I'm going to play on there. I advise you to research them, and the merge network and make good decisions with your money. If you want to play poker in America online consider them. If they don't pass your smell test, pass on them. If they do, please play.

**Speaking of Money being safe. My friend Tom on facebook alerted me to the shenigans at play on Wall Street again. The LinkedIn IPO is a joke an absolute joke. Long story short, their brokers tell them they should open the stock at half the valuation it winded up settling at. While IPOs that fly by their opening price are seen as really positive, an astute observer pointed out, the company is really getting ripped off. Here's what happens, the stock opens at a price, then select clients of the firm selling the stock get to buy it first, then as the stock goes on a metoric rise they get to sell and get a piece of the windfall.

So if the valuation turns out to be double the price, LinkedIN is robbed of half the money they could have made on their IPO. Meanwhile their firm is already getting a cut of things, gets a cut of their clients that had early access to the shares and likely bought some up themselves (if that is okay by the SEC--even if it isn't these sleaseballs probably found a way around it). The 90s featured all of Wall Street getting fat on the IPOS that would double and triple in the Internet boom and few people thought to ask why were the initial valuations so wildly off? Answer, the firms were blatantly stealing from their clients.

I worked at a Boston Market during a couple of summers in college, and got put on this team to open franchises. As a kid I was training managers and competent enough to keep the stores running at a 100 mph during the crucial opening weeks when lines were out the building. In retrospect I was severely underpaid, but anyway, after the first opening, I went home told my mom, who plays in the stock market with the "Buy What You Know" approach and has to her advantage bought what I know many times, to get in on Boston Market. When they had their IPO we couldn't buy any shares because we traded with a different firm but my Aunt was able to get in pretty early (think it was Merrill Lynch). Boston Market soared, and I learned then that IPOs were rigged.

My Aunt was a client of somebody else and was able to buy it at a price, much higher than the IPO mind you, but it was like she was already in line. They carefully calculated who would buy and sell, at what level all the while earning comissions on comissions before the Initial PUBLIC Offering even went public. She made a nice profit. When you can't get in on an even playing ground with somebody else the system is flawed.

When, the issuing company, can't evaluate correctly how many people are trying to get in on company the system is more than flawed it's corrupt. All that information is there. I'm sure I simplified things and probably got some things completely wrong on the way the markets/IPOs work, but I also think I know how they should work in a free society and they don't work that way.

Still chaps me that those louses like Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs can sale toxic items to their clients and suffer nothing. We bailed them out and are paying the price. They should all be jailed. Tao of Poker compared the smackdown on online poker to the the bailouts of Wall Street recently and it's mindblowing on powerless average Americans are in the face of the power brokers in New York and Washington, DC. Too big to fail? But not too big to steal, steal, steal.

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