Shake It Up
Quite an eventful evening/early morning for me. First, the power went kaput around 9:30 last night, while I was in the middle of getting cornholed on Party Poker. Luckily, or not, I was on the laptop and had enough battery power to get me to 6th place in a $20 SnG. That, and some plain bad luck on the 2/4 bad beat jackpot tables, and I was down early. The mood was cool, though, with all the candles. Our house looked like a Police video.
I'm happy to report that even though I was losing on the BBJ tables, I saved myself quite a few bets. Didn't get to play much, and when I did, I ran into monsters. Got KK in the small blind and four others saw the flop, despite the betting being capped. Like the recent hand I showed, I was going to bet it aggressively, but I slowed down on the turn. I hadn't improved and one player was raising every chance. So I simply called on the turn, having to put in just a single bet, and when the third diamond hit on the river, it got checked around. The Raiser did indeed have AA. I also managed to throw away TPTK a couple times when it appeared--and was confirmed--that I was beaten. One hand was somewhat memorable. I get Suited Slick on the button. A middle position raise, a call in front of me. I call and SB calls. Flop comes A Q 6 with two clubs (I'm not holding clubs). SB checks, MP bets, a call and I raise, worried only about a set from MP. Everyone calls and I'm no longer worried about a set from MP and put him on kings or jacks. Turn is the 7 of clubs and previously meek SB bets out. Uh oh. I figure flush and I'm drawing dead. Both others call and I fold. River is a rag and I was right, but not exactly right. SB turns over A7o for a winning two pair. A check of the hand history shows MP had Kings and the other also had Big Slick. Good to know that the heavy pre-flop underdog could pull it out.
I have to say that Cloutier and McEvoy's book has helped me in this regard, re-inforcing the idea that your session results depend just as much on hands you don't win as on those you do. Avoiding the long calls, quickly getting away from "Walking Back to Houston," etc.
And it paid off later. The power eventually came back on and I flopped the absolute nuts on my first hand back on the 2/4 BBJ table. Got to see a free flop from the BB with 10 8 of clubs. To my extreme delight, it came down J 9 7 of clubs. Another player also had 10 8 for the flopped straight. Another had the ace of clubs and made the flush on the river. No skill involved here in getting the pot to triple digits, but my profit was greater thanks to the earlier lay downs.
Managed to pull off a second in a $20 SnG later as well (one of three for the day in the money). Lost in the end to a maniac. This guy (thankfully, two to my right) raised nearly every pot pre-flop. Called big raises with ludicrous hands (he knocked out Big Slick with 82s). Naturally, he held a big chip lead. I hadn't had much to play and was sitting about T700 in Level 3 when I got a run of cards. Mr. Maniac paid me off every time. I even limped into the pot when he was in the blinds, knowing I would get a chance to re-raise. He didn't disappoint. I was the chip leader inside a single orbit. He then knocked out the bubble when he flopped a set of queens. Bubble Boy had top pair on the board and was fixin' to get paid off. He couldn't believe Mr. Maniac made a real hand.
I knocked out third place and we were about even in chips. He raised me every single hand. I won some, folded some and then got AQ. He raised, I put him all in. He called with K3o and put me out. No wins this week. And that's the second one I've lost when all-in and ahead. Frustrating.
Then I was rudely awakened this morning just after 4 by an earthquake, maybe the strangest earthquake ever. It was a single jolt, a quick splash of ice water. And then it was done. They always seem longer. For perhaps a millisecond--which dragged on in slow-motion--there was the question of whether it would "catch," like a car engine. Long enough for me to anticipate it. Long enough for me to worry about The Boy. Then, it was gone.
We got a couple others later on, the biggest one as I sat in my car at the trains station. It seemed more of the rolling variety, but that may have just been my new shocks. Nothing serious. I'm a veteran of a dozen earthquakes and am generally not shaken by them (haha! Very Punny!). The only one that ever really induced terror was the Northridge Quake 11 years ago. I was living not far from the epicenter for that one. It also occurred around 4 in the ayem. My first thought was that someone was breaking into my apartment. The windows rattled like the opening bars to Captor of Sin. Then the ground roiled. I was physically pitched out of bed, landing on my knees. Next, I was tossed in the general vicinity of the closet, where I waited out the storm. Unlike previous experiences, the ground didn't just roll this time. It bucked. Violently. For what seemed like an awfully long time.
I've often read that it's these smaller jolts, many of which we don't feel, that relieve stress on the fault lines. I'll take that. Even if it merely postpones The Big One. I also think that if we had one of those quick jolts every day at 5:30 in the morning, I'd never again have to use the snooze button.