Monday, December 28, 2009

Holidays = Hectic

So, I've meant to keep this thing more updated that I have, and I have had some good ideas for posts which will make it here soon. Some topics include: For all you survivor fans out there, a look at the best to probably ever play the game and why he never had a chance of winning. The state of villainry in modern media and why I love the bad guy. And, more poker coverage.

For now, I have played poker every day this month, be it for a short or long period of time. I had a good couple days where I was lost in the magical world of Runbad, I have rebounded in a fine way the past few days with 3 wins in three days, and I'm attempting to crack the top 2,000 on the TLB this month. So far I'm sitting in about 2,300 place with 3 days left. I figure anywhere between 2-4 more wins this month will crack the top 2,000 and get me into a freeroll for a Pokerstars passport (basically a buy-in and trip to any of their land-based tournaments. I would probably look at somewhere tropical of course, although there are some nice tourneys running on the European tour they have as well) I'm closing in on 750 games for the month. It will put me short of my goal, but for everything that has been going on with the holidays, I think its been pretty good.

With January approaching and Nick finishing up on trying to be the first and only person to win the monthly TLB two months in a row (an amazing feat for sure, considering they have been doing this for about 5 years and nobody has ever done it. Speaking of which, he is in the lead by about 300 points with 3 days to go. He may need one more big cash in these three days to secure it, but I, along with many others, think he has a great chance to do it) Nick will be getting more and more involved in the coaching side of things. This is big for all of us who are his students, and it will be great to have some 1 on 1 time with the guy who is crushing the game right now. I continue to feel like my game is improving, as even during my trip to magical Runbad, I kept my head clear and cool, didn't tilt, and continued to tell myself its all one long game, and the losses will come as they will. Keep your head up and your midn sharp and keep learning. Make the right play every time. The beats mean nothing, and the beats you drop on other mean as much nothing.

And with that, I'll leave you for now. I've got something to post on here for my dad soon that I'm sure you all will love. Hope everyone had a happy holidays, and keep checking back. Ill have more soon.

Monday, December 14, 2009

A random thought: AKA more why poker.

So I was talking with my mom the other day, when this conversation came up. We were talking about the usual things, how life was and work, etc. She asked me how the poker was going and I gave a brief outline on where I hoped things would be by next year and the idea of doing this as a full time job.

She got into her usual huffy mood about it. (My mother has never been a fan of my desire to play poker, she feels that it has the ability to turn me into a degenerate gambler, but she supports me in what I think will help improve my life.) So although she was hemming and hawing, she did bring up a point that she was hoping that poker was not making me neglect my children. Thats when the thought came in, right now I play poker daily, roughly from 9PM to 2 AM. My children are asleep the entire time. On the other hand, in my day job I drive one hour to work each way and work from 10:30 am to 7:30 pm. All this time my children are awake. This begs the question then, which form of work is actually keeping me away from my children? My night job, or my day job? Its an interesting question. Yes, I have my day job to support my family and keep us in our home and provide food and clothing, but were my night time job my actual full time job, it would eliminate a few things. One, there would be no commute to work. Two, there would be no working away from the home which would provide greater opportunities to see my children more often. Three, by being able to set my own hours, I would actually be able to maximize the time I got to spend with my children.

So while its possible playing poker for a living may seem like the big bad wolf to some of you, sometimes it certainly seems the positives far outweigh the negatives.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Fun while it lasted

No, that doesn't mean that I'm finished with this little journey, just that I didn't complete my one win a night for the rest of december goal. Thats alright though, I've had a bit of a run bad here the past few days including some incredibly cold cold decks, (For those not in the know, cold deck is a term that refers to one great hand being trumped by a better great hand. For instance, if I, on the button move all in with a pair of kings, and I am called by the big blind who has woken up with a pair of aces, I have been "coolered" by a cold deck) and horrendous beats. I'm not here to make this a bad beat blog, so lets just say that my two highest finishes these past two days would have been wins had it not been for some horrendous cards.

So all in all, still feeling happy, still ahead for the week, and just continuing to make good plays. I'm going to reevaluate my early game on my next session with Bodeye as I feel that there may be some places where I am missing value or giving up value. I am feeling very confident in my late game, including my push/fold decisions. Again, there is room for improvement, but I feel I am making the right plays at the right times, and the number of bad beats that I am taking helps to confirm that.

A fair warning to those who are reaing. My next two posts I feel are going to be rather lengthy, including a rundown of things that I enjoy outside of the game of poker, and a brief history as I know it of my main coach, Nick Rainey, and why I decided to get into this. For now though, its back to the grind (my daytime job right now, Ill be grinding more at my nighttime job later on)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

1 for 1

Well the first night of my challenge is complete, and it did result in a taking down of a tournament. So I am officially one for one. I also completed 35 games which is more than I had put it any other night up to this point. One week in, I have completed 155 games. Not quiiiite on pace for what I was looking for this month, but with a large chunk of my honey-do lsit out of the way,a nd this being my final week of school for the semester, my volume will pick up considerably. My goal for tonight is 40 games and at least another win. Lets see how it goes.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Sweet Dreams

Its always nice to book a win in the last tourney of a session before bedtime. It sends you off to sleep with a smile on your face and a confidence inside that has you waking up in the morning with that same smile on your face.

Of course, it isn't the winning that makes you smile (Though the winning is certainly good, don't get me wrong) its the fact that I feel that I played that last tournament about as perfectly as I am capable of doing right now. I of course have plenty more to learn about the game and strategies, but for my current situation and where I am right now, I could not have finished that tournament better than I did. And that confidence will carry over into tonight's session. I can feel it.

I set a goal for myself last night, an attempt to win out and out at least one tournament every night through the end of December. Its a tough goal, very tough for the number of tournaments that I put in, but I'm gonna try my best to complete it. Tonight starts night one, and as long as it goes on, I will continue to update here.

Doing so would be wonderful not only for my confidence, but if I can show a nice run of profit between now and the middle of January, I will reward myself (With the permission of my wonderful wife of course) with a trip to Vegas with my buds John and Naco.

I met John and Naco, god has it really been 5 years now? Yep, a little over 5 years ago now back when I made my firs foray into the world of poker as work when I took a job for local pub poker company Party League Poker. Naco (or Anthony I guess, though the number of times I have called him by that name are very limited) was pretty much running the league in the Nashville area, and after being a regular for a few months, I approached him asking for a job running a few of the games in the area. As he had gotten to know me as a regular, and seemed to be one of the few people there to actually "get" me, he obliged.

John was a different story. When I first met him, he certainly was one of the people who totally did not "get" me. And for good reason, I was brash, cocky, and felt that my poker game was far above any of the other drunkards and lowlifes that attended the games. (Note: I also fell into the lowlife category, though at the time I didn't realize it.) From the start, John didn't like me, but after some time hanging out with me, and discovering that I actually loved the game and the theory behind it much like he did, and realizing I was more than just the obnoxious loudmouth at the table across from him.

Luckily, the chance meeting with these two have led to the two longest running friendships I have in this place. And I'm grateful for it. Friends are such a stabilizing part of a person's life, and having the opportunity to just hang out and shoot the shit, break down poker and sports. Its a good thing to have in your life, and I'm grateful to have such good friends.

So the opportunity to fly to Vegas and participate in our favorite pasttime in the world capital for that pasttime would be very hard to pass up, so as I told John the other day. I'm going to "Grind my balls off" this month and next so that I will have an opportunity to get there.

Lastly, and for those of you that know me well, this is going to come as quite a surprise, This past weekend I did something that counts as Handy. I know I know, a shock to all, but I actually put up the Christmas lights, sawed through a tree trunk, and set up the tree. Handyman Matt to the rescue. I only suffered minor injuries, including a sliced finger and a twisted ankle, but none of these should keep me from performing work, so that is all a plus.

And that's about it. Keep me in your thoughts as i try to make a killing these next few months. I think I may have figured something out last night during my last game that will help improve me further, and if it turns out that is working, Ill be sure to clue you all in here.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

December: The first

Red: "I remember thinking it would take a man six hundred years to tunnel through the wall with it. Andy did it in less than twenty."

Goals are a very good thing to have, and a wise man once said that getting your goals down on paper (or in this case the internet) may be the most important step towards being a winning poker player. Without goals, all we do is drift idly through space. So while I outlined some longer term goals in a previous post, today I wanted to focus on goals strictly for the month of December.

1. Play 1,200 games this month. I'm not really sure how ambitious this is, and after a full month of playing I will certainly be able to gauge this better. Through about two weeks I played roughly 400 games, and I feel like I could have worked a little harder for a little longer, so 1200 may be attainable. My coach Bodeye has set a 2,000 game goal for himself, and of course he has the ability to do this full time right now, so with me having a FT job and finals coming up, this may be a tad ambitious, but ambition never hurt anyone.

2. Review at least one full hand history before starting every session. This is especially important. Going into a new session with a good outlook of certain mistakes I had made will help keep me from making those mistakes in the new session.

3. Upgrade from 5 tables to 8 by the end of the month. More tables = more games = more money won. Its a pretty simple equation, and so long as I can keep my game as consistent as it has been with more tables loaded, it is one that will be profitable for me. This will also help me complete goal #1.

4. Work hard, work harder, complete my school semester, and play the best I can play. Bodeye is right when he says the only thing you can control at the tables is the way you play your cards. By playing the cards correctly every time, I may win, and I may lose, but the right play will give the right result, and I'll be happy with it.

Until next time...