Monday, December 17, 2012

Meandering Thoughts

The tragedy in Connecticut obviously touched all of us, especially as parents of young children.  Scary, senseless, crazy, and every adjective used to describe it by better wordsmiths than me.  In the aftermath, I went to facebook to put out a little note from our GCP page conveying the heartbreak Gene and I both share as parents of young children. Before I could there staring me in the face was a message from Ruby Tuesdays in my feed.  I joined some sort of March Madness basketball pool Ruby Tuesdays ran and had to hit like on their facebook page to enter and every once in a blue moon I get some sort of update.  I think I might have eaten there once.  Anyway, they chose to comment on the situation and it left a bitter taste in my mouth.

The first sentence extended their condolences and was the kind of message I was preparing to put out.  The second sentence repeated their name and the message.  On the whole nothing wrong with that.  Then I realized why I was made uneasy.  The post reeked a little bit of opportunism and sounded a bit like an advertisement.  I know I'm being a little anal here but I have to question the motivation of some of these social media responses.

Immediately, that kind of post gets thousands of likes, in wrestling that's known as a cheap pop.  You praise the town your show is in and everybody cheers.  Who can dislike the sentiment that our hearts are broken with what's in Connecticut   I realize that saying it is obviously done from a good place.  However, when you repeat "your brand" as you would in a radio ad or any other ad you have to question the intentions.  It's not quite profiteering but it is some sort of distant relative.

Why do I care what Ruby Tuesdays thinks of the tragedy for one.  Nobody is going to be for it, and two why do I need to see Ruby Tuesdays two or three times with it.  After it settled in a bit, and I realized why it made me uncomfortable I thought about replying in their feed, but my feeling was a sublte point and I didn't want to be attacked for seemingly discouraging the expression of emotions we all feel.  So I didn't.  Then, I decided not to post anything on GCP's page.

If it was in our region, obviously I think considering our readership, as a company it'd be our place to say something.  Especially as players might some how be involved and joining the chorus of support could only be a good thing.  Since it wasn't local, I think as an individual expressing my sadness was more appropriate than doing so under the GCP banner.

I'm not trying to pick on Ruby Tuesdays, as I'm sure they weren't the only company to do that, and in truth very easily the message likely came from a good place, and the person writing the post wasn't trying to do anything but extend a genuine condolence.  Just felt off and exploitive--whether intentional or not I'll never know.

**Poker.  Went to the Beau Rivage 15k guarantee as it's likely I won't play anything until the Million Dollar Heater in January.  I have to say I played two or three hands rather poorly and was lucky to make some of my buy-in back in a short cash session.  Couldn't believe I'd waste three hours of driving time to and from the coast away and take time away from my family to play bad.  But I did.  Probably, a good thing as I was feeling fairly confident after the Bayou Classic.  Overconfidence and trying to be too smart in poker usually leads to bad things for me.  Rather do it in a weekly tournament than at the Heater.

My mistakes:

-I didn't cbet a hand I should have and let a guy turn a set.  Compounding my mistake, I ignored my standard rules for weeklies when he check raised me on the turn and called him there and on the river.  I didn't tab the guy for a "weekly" player so I called a little lighter.  Most "weaker" weekly players are only reraising or check raising with big hands and sometimes even two pair should be a fold.  Obviously no rule is so harsh that I always follow it and can be exploited but that's a pretty good one all things being equal.

Well, he was check-raising with a set and I should have given him more credit after his aggression.  The fact that he's capable of making a move is regardless a little bit in that specific spot.  Playing into my initial mistake, was there was a wide open player from Harrahs, New Orleans, Mike, on the button who I thought would do my betting for me on the checked flop but he checked behind.  The mistake is not betting my hand in these fast structures especially as I had been fairly active to that point.  No need to slow down.  As Mike pointed out likely he calls me on the flop and folds to me on the turn or river and the other guy isn't in it to hit his set.

-I reraised a solid player from New Orleans when it was checked down to the river and I hit my flush.  Basically, the only hand I could beat was if he turned a straight or had a smaller flush.  He repopped me and I called.  His second nuts, queen high flush, beat my jack high flush.  Should have just called the river bet and not reopened the action as he's likely got a flush there most of the time.  Probably should find a fold to his re-re-raise too (see above).

-Later in a cash game, I called off a short stack's river shove for $51 when he the board read AKQQJ when based on the action likely he had a ten.  Maybe a full house--far less likely based on the action, and a flush draw on the board and his position. Regardless, I should have folded as at best I was chopping and I could have let the pot go.  Probably he's rarely bluffing in that spot.

Happy Holidays to Everybody:

I'm won't be playing much at all except for maybe cash until the Heater.  Looking forward to a fun holdiay season and hope everybody gets to spend some extra time with their families and enjoy things a little more as we all have that terrible reminder how precious every moment is with our kids and family.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Bayou Classic and More...

**I haven't been able to blog in a while even though I got a maelstrom of thoughts I've wanted to get out on a whole range of topics.  Obviously won't flesh them all out but here some tidbits...

**15 comments waiting for review.  15 out of 15 spam.  Boo!

**It's never fun to have the water go out on your block.  Less fun when you are dealing with a nasty stomach virus through the night.  Yeah, that recently happened to me.

**Roger Goodell probably doesn't like Paul Tagliabue all that much.  Can you imagine if say Bill Clinton was called in to help Obama with some sort of impasse with Congress, and he was like "Yeah, that's a good effort and all, but NO!"

**Hornets will likely be the Pelicans.  Back in the 70s and early 80s when all the mascots went for the cartoonish lovable aesthetic and not the edgy, menacing animals they are now, the Pelicans would have made sense.  Though I'm eager to see what a angry, intimidating Pelican looks like.  Pelicans, a bit like the Clippers, (and why would you want to be like the Clippers) just doesn't sound scary.

**Selling pieces of my Million Dollar heater action.  All of the guarantees included in the package.  Email me for details.


**Ran good at the Bayou Classic.  Wish the fields were bigger but final tabled and cashed in a nooner (6th).  Chopped things five ways in a five pm.  Chopped things three ways in a 3 pm and four ways in  the last chance tournament.  Pretty good week.  Maybe shouldn't have done so much chopping but I don't think I ever got less than second place money (usually more) so I can't complain.  Had one brutal cash session and a couple of good ones.  Also, I traded ten per cent with, Teddy, a reg who was still alive in the last nightly final table where Ricky Romero was sitting on a ton of chips.  So, possibly I might have won more.

**In a mega, I stone cold bubbled.  They gave out four seats and $1500 (essentially another seat).  Traded $200 save with the other short stack who called me... as it was obvious whoever lost the hand would like miss out on the seat.  We made the deal before we turned over the cards.  I thought I was going to be ahead with a suited ace after he stewed forever before calling.  He surprised me when he showed A10.  Thought for sure it was a couple of face cards.  He won.  Later he chipped up and I just traded the $200 for equity in him in the Main if he won the seat.  He did.  More on this a bullet point or two later.

**I failed to trade 10% with Kenny Milam.  I busted before we gave each other the agreement and sure enough he snapped off that tournament for $5500.  Second time I think that's happened with Kenny.

**Turns out the guy I got a piece of from the mega, Dave Chocoles, is married to the twin sister of one of my  good friend's fiancee, so once I found out the connection I was even happier to have a piece of him in the main.  He played great in the mega and he's played well in Harrahs weeklies in the past.  I think he's got the necessary aggression to be successful in poker and he plays position extremely well.  In fact, I don't like to see him sit at my table in the weeklies because I know he's going to be mixing it up and taking chips.

Sure enough he played well in the main and made it to under three tables left.  They paid 12 and I think Dave busted around 21st.  John Holley flopped top set on him (7s) when Dave had pocket tens.  Kind of got cornered the way the hand and the stack sizes played out.  He 3bet John preflop and while I don't think Holley had the implied odds to set-mine, Holley doesn't have to give him credit for an overpair.  Maybe if he played more with Dave he would have let it go.

Dave immediately apologized about my per cent, and while I would have loved to have a share of 41k, no apologies necessary. I invested in him because I knew he was capable of a deep run.  The final hand kind of played itself and he was just unlucky.  Great run Dave!

**Liked to see Frank Alpandinar, David Weinstein, and a slew of other local names getting deep in the Main Event.  They gave us a good sweat.  Frank is getting closer and closer to jewelry but I know it only feels like it's further and further away.  So many people there to root for including the local weekly regs like Kenny, Joan Rhodes, and others made it a fun tournament to sweat... and I hate sweating!  I had some bad luck as thrice I walked in as friends busted.  Once BJ McBrayer walked away from the table, then Barth Melius (btw, thanks for dinner Barth that was awesome!), and the third time I was about to go say hi to Jacob Naguin when he I spotted him not looking happy and walking away.

**In the nooner I final tabled I was one of the chipleaders (the chipleader?) with three tables left.  Ross Leitz, playing pretty LAG-gy, raised from UTG.  I spied AK on the button and 3bet him (I think the last time I 3bet him I turned over 75 of hearts so I expected action).  The small blind with maybe 60% of my chips insta-called.  I was kind of thrown and started giving him credit for big hands (in retrospect I shouldn't have--not that it mattered a whit).  Ross called.  I flopped QJ10.  Hmmm.  Guy fired in a big bet, Ross folded, I made the min-raise, he shoved and I called.  He had AQ.  He went JJ to scoop the pot.  Ugh.  Later when down to six I realized had I won that pot, that would have been good enough for third in chips--with six left.  Tough blow.  Good to succeed with friends as Barth, Gene D and Ross all made the money too.