Sunday, October 28, 2007

Sentences You'd Hope to Never Say

I just got backdoored by Cleo Lemon.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Important Procedural Realization

I've been writing a story for a contest the past week, an exercise that I felt would be more authentic if I dug deep inside myself for introspection, to find motivation of characters based on some of my own experiences. Unfortunately for me, the process put me on massive tilt.

A tip for you kids, if you're going to look inside yourself for answers, try not to do it via sticking your head up your ass.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Fashionably Late

I'm going to miss the first half-hour of the Riverchasers event tonight while I matriculate home from work. Yet, even when blinded off for that length of time, I'll still have more chips than I did after an equal period in last night's Mook.

That is, unless Columbo's value bets are even more enticing and my computer calls them in my absence. Sonofagun nickel and dimed me to death. He's a bit like the Angels offense. A doink here, a bloop there, an infield scribbler there and I'm down to T2000.

I keed, sir. If you'd have had someone to protect Vlad, that tourney mighta been yours. Congrats, of course, to Ignatious crawled out from his fort made of Budweiser 12-pack cartons to finish first, in both the tournament and blood alcohol content.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


...while Los Angeles burns.

If I seem like I'm over-reacting to this season's Southern California wildfires, it's because one of the signs of the apocalypse is me atop the BBT2 points leaderboard. Make sure you have fresh batteries in the flashlight, lots of water and bullets.

Though my swank desert apartment complex is not threatened, the skies are black and the air is filled with ash and dirt, bourne by the 60 mph Santa Ana winds that are forecasted to last a couple more days. My mouth and respiratory cavities are packed with particulate matter and no matter how many microbrews I've downed in the last two days, I can't get rid of the grainy taste.

They say to be successful in tournament poker, you ahve to win with Big Slick and be able to beat Big Slick. I don't think they were talking about beating AK with 98o and 94s, however. That's what I did last night, open-pushing those hands and getting called in the blinds by stk and GCox respectively. I flopped a 9 each time to continue drawing sooty breath.

I was short because my opening table was a minefield. Saying it was "tight" doesn't really explain it. What it was was "good," and folks were not going to be giving chips away with marginal hands. Except me, of course. I folded AQo and TT pre-flop to pressure at that table; nevermind that Hoy had The Hammer on the former.

I dropped a Platinum Hammer at the Final Table, three handed. Button raised to 8K, jj called in the SB and I pumped it to 26K. They folded; I showed.

Little Vegas tidbit for ya. I was playing the 1/2 NL game at The Venetian, waiting for Div to show for their nightly tourney. This was on Sunday and I was hurting, despite the fact I'd slept much of the afternoon. Saturday night was a debaucherous blast, starting at Pink Taco and ending at Spearmint Rhino (I would wager, an alien would be hard-pressed to correctly identify the strip club from those names). I had just gotten my first beer of the day from the boobified waitress and it had yet to calm my dehydration or unsettled stomach. What I'm sayin is, I was a little on edge, which is the one excuse I can offer, though it's really not a valid one.

Second orbit or so and the table's fairly solid. Clever player in Seat 10 already trapped me into giving him $60, two tighties to the left of me, chubby guy to my right is good and gregarious, which, naturally meant he took the huge suckouts of the day (rivered quads against flopped nut flush anyone?). I only see two targets, a French woman in Seat 8 and a middle-aged drunk wearing a LeBron jersey (with a t-shirt underneath) in Seat 2. In my BB, LeBron raises to $10 behind a couple limpers. One cold call before it gets to me and I look down to see Presto. I call, as do the limpers. The flop comes 655.

I check.

LeBron bets $20, I call and limpers fold. Turn is a whocares (actually, think it was a King). I check and LeBron bets $40. I don't Hollywood much. I'm less acting than counting my chips. I've only got $72 more on top of the $40. Is it too much for him to call? He's staring me down pretty good, so I think he might have AA, which means yeah, he'll call. What is he thinking? Will another call here be totally obvious? It would be to me. But I just call anyway.

And realize, as I put my chips out, that I'm shaking. It's faint, but I am. And here's the thing. The more energy I put into calming the tremors, the worse they get.

The river is a 4 and because I'm now shivering like a naked man in an igloo, I just shove in the $72. LeBron takes his sweet time and I'm actually tottering so badly now that I'm making audible sounds. LeBron is staring me down and I then do the dumbest thing I could possibly do. I take a drink of my beer. I look like Geri Jewell and the amber liquid sloshes against the sides of the glass, prompting at least three people at the table to start laughing. Fortunately, LeBron isn't one of them. In fact, he's the only one who didn't notice and he pays me off.

Gregarious Chubby Guy says, "Show me the '5!'" and the table goes bonkers when I show 'em both. Then they start giving me shit, the One Seat saying something clever and the Brit to my left responding, "you should have felt his leg. Like a jackhammer."

I was a little embarrassed. Rookie. Not as embarrassed as LeBron who kept saying things like, "I raised pre-flop. I didn't think he'd call me with a 5." LeBron's poker reads do not take post-flop action or full-body convulsions into account.

Got out of there with a little profit and played well in the tourney, not shaking once. Then again, I didn't flop quads again, either.

Monday, October 22, 2007

I'll Take the Bridesmaid

Second in the MATH. Congrats to jj for the win and the TOC seat. He outplayed me, specifically after I drew close in chips. He made a great turn bet when behind, and pushed me off a better, albiet unimproved, hand. I got lucky twice earlier on, with open-pushes when short, beating Big Slick both times, so, that just proves the old adage: I'm a nit.

Thanks to Hoy and Al and Jesus for hosting and being either awesome or the Son of God.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Found Money

Your son has been in bed for an hour. You recently busted out of the Blogger Big Game in 12th. You have a buttload of shows backed up on TiVo and think sitting down to watch them is the perfect way to end the week, relaxation on top of the four beers (Rogue Dead Man Ale) you've comsumed.

There's one thing missing. Okay, a second thing that's not dark-haired and gorgeous and smells like a fresh-water stream. Popcorn? No good. A handful of Pringles, sure, but not gonna do the job. Goldfish crackers? C'mon.

Then, in your Ale-addled brain, a spark of memory. And 4 minutes later, that half a carnitas burrito left over from lunch is a ghost.

I am gonna write about the recent Vegas trip, but, while I wipe the salsa verde from my mouth, please check out Div's excellent reports.

Sunday Picks

Greatest teaser parlay win ever:

Giants -3
Bills +9
Bucs +8
TB scores 9 points in the final two minutes, due in part to an onside kick recovery, to lose by 7
Texans +7
Wow. Down 32-7 and just effing awful, Houston scores 29 4th quarter points, again with the help of an onside kick in the final two minutes, a combeback spearheaded by one Sage Rosenfels who, on his first two plays of the game, fumbled and threw an INT, to take a late one-point lead, but then lose on a last-second FG by Rob Bironas, his 8th of the day--EIGHTH!--an NFL record.

The afternoon teaser parlay is as follows:

Chiefs +8
Eagles + 0.5
Cowboys - 3.5
Seahawks -2
KC/OAK Over 31.5

The evening picks are a straight wager on PIT at -3.5 and The Blogger Big Game (on which I suggest you bet on anyone but me).

I think the Sawx will win a barn-burner tonight in what will eventually become a battle of the bullpens. No value in the -168 money line, but if you give a run and a half, you can get +115. Not sure I'm willing to do that.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Silver Linings

Yesterday, I was lamenting the Tribe's collapse in Game 5 (and the ongoing Beckett post-season brilliance) and I uttered the following two sentences:

"The Indians are going to wilt in Boston."
"Carmona will lose his shit after he gets squeezed and walk a bunch of guys."

Anyone who knows me is well familiar with my dislike of the Red Sox. Right or wrong, I hate their fucking guts. As a team. Certain individuals I can stomach. I was hoping Cleveland would finish them off in Game 5 as I had a bad feeling about their ability to win the cauldron of Fenway, which would be much hotter for much longer than in Games 1 and 2.

Most of today, I was muttering to myself about bloody socks and idiots and the fact Eric Byrnes doesn't know you have to actually touch home plate for a run to count (no, I'm not over it; Eff You). My ire at the inevitable Sawx comeback reached Anger Level Red. Then I figured out how to save myself

Sox -1.5 runs at +145.

Shit. For money, I'll cheer Curt Schilling and JD Drew.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

I Stand Corrected

When I read Pauly's early reports from Key West, I admit I wondered, "How the hell does somebody spend $420 at a strip club?"

Now I know. Fuckin' Vegas.

What did I get for my money? One, A 30-year crush on Marcia Brady is now somewhat requited. Two, the peace of mind knowing the local economy and the makers of Jameson Irish Whiskey are in no danger of going broke. Three, voyeuristic episodes singed forever in the ol' memory banks.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Nowhere To Go But Up

Ow. My head.

I had a Hard Curfew last night--my first of three in Vegas--of 4 a.m. I went to bed at 6:30. In my defense, I didn't place my maiden wager until nearly midnight. The first SoCo came before that.

My first bet was on Pai Gow. Coincidentally, it was during the same hand that Div made his first EVER bet on the blogger's favorite -EV game. He got dealt a 9-high Pai Gow.

We did better at poker.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Sundays With Dr. Pauly

I fondly remember those early weekend mornings back in 2005, donking it up with fellow bloggers in the Saturdays With Pauly poker tournaments. I'd sit on the couch in my spacious living room, watching the English Premier League, semi-parenting AJ and babying my hangover while the wife was off at work.

My how things have changed. Except the hangover part.

Introducing Sundays With Dr. Pauly!

From The Doc:

If you haven't figured it out yet, Sundays with Dr. Pauly is 10-week contest that I'm hosting over at Fantasy Sports Live. If you were hoping for a series of online poker tournaments, well you're shit out of luck. However, if you are a fantasy football junkie and would like a shot at playing against me along with winning some prizes in the process, then I encourage you to participate in Sundays with Dr. Pauly.

If you don't have a Fantasy Sports Live account, you can create an account here.

If you have been participating in the BFFB, the structure and format are very similar. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, please read on.

Here are the rules.

1. Sign up for an account, which you can fund with a credit card. Fantasy Sports Live is 100% legal and within the boundaries set forth by the UIGEA.

2. Weekly contests are $10. Total investment over the duration of Sundays with Dr. Pauly will be $100. We're starting at Week 6 and ending at Week 15.

3. Sign up for any contest that is listed as Sundays with Dr. Pauly. You will be setting up a fantasy football team consisting of a 1 QB, 3 WRs, 2 RBs, 1 TE, 1 K, and 1 D using a salary cap format.

4. Every week, sign up for a new contest and create a new team. You're competing against the players in your individual contest. The top 3 in each contest wins prize money (1st - $45, 2nd - $27, 3rd - $18). Places 4 thru 10 get zilch.

5. You are also competing against me even though I might be in a different contest. To make this fair, I'm only allowed one entry per week.

6. We will be tracking the overall progress of everyone who participates. The top 3 overall point winners over the duration of Sundays with Dr. Pauly will win prizes. See below.
Overall Prizes for Sundays with Dr. Pauly:
1st Place - $100 cash and $50 added to your FSL account
2nd Place - Any football themed DVD of your choice (e.g. Rudy, Any Given Sunday, Brian's Song)
3rd Place - a copy of Blind Side by Michael Lewis
4th Place - a phone call from Daddy

Bonus: If you get more points than me in three consecutive weeks, you win an entry into a season ending freeroll with $100 added to the overall prize pool.

Best of luck everyone. We will be posting updates of Sundays with Dr. Pauly here and over at Blinders blog.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

How To Go Out at Level II of a Three-Quarter-Millon Dollar, Deep Stack Tournament

1. Get dealt several good starting hands.
2. Miss every flop.
3. Get check-raised three straight times on c-bets.
4. Get frustrated.
5. Play back at the 4th check-raise with top pair, Q kicker.
6. Lose to 83's flopped trips.


That Was Unusual

My Saturday was going along its standard path. AJ wanted to watch football, but his attention span dictates he can only do so 15 minutes at a time, so he alternated between Wisconsin-Illinois and "Over the Hedge." I hit my teaser on the Illini (having watched the over-rated Badgers beat a crappy, albiet randomly flashy, Michigan St. team in Key West), but bubbled off a $22+2 Turbo SnG when my Big Ace lost to Ace-Rag. Then, things began to change.

I played another $22+2 and won it. Was never in trouble and had a nearly 4-1 chip lead heads-up. At the same time, I was moving right along in a satellite to the Full Tilt $750K Guaranteed tomorrow. It was a $10 Re-Buy Turbo and was the softest sat of all time. Only 38 runners, with 2 seats guaranteed, and there were only 24 re-buys and 8 add-ons. We were down to 15 by the time the re-buy period (only a half-hour) ended. Long story short, I finished 3rd (as if you needed me to tell you that). But even though I didn't get a seat, even though a guy who had me out-chipped by less than 3K called--called!--my AJ push with T6o and won, I more than tripled my investment. Not the seat, but not bad.

Then AJ and I watched USC. He's been poking fun at me all week since I'm a Stanford fan and he's a bandwagon, front-running six-year-old. Forty-one point favorites. I would have celebrated wildly had the result not made my son cry. The tears were 35% forced, but still...

Then, it started. LSU pulled out a miracle, not only to win, but to cover my tease, without going "over." The bet was LSU -1 and Under 53. Amazing game. 5-for-5 on 4th downs. Dominated for long stretches, but two gutty TD drives to win it.

So, I'm thinking, my luck runs pretty good today. That LSU game felt like found money. So, with AJ tucked away, I played a couple more satellites to the $750K. First, was a $24+2 and I was running okay in that one, which attracted 59 runners and gave six seats. I also played a $5 Turbo Re-Buy that began 45 minutes later. More wild that the $10 earlier and three seats available when all was said and done. I bombed out of that one, the blinds and antes of the Turbo quickly over-taking the freeze-out, but not until the Final Table, where I finished 5th for another satellite profit.

In the freeze-out, I ran into some bad luck when my over-pair wasn't quite as good as the other guy's over-pair. I had T505 left, 20 runners left and an M of shit. I was drinking a little, but I know I tripled that up with J5o. Then pushed with KQo and cracked aces. From there, I played my ass off to the Final Table, where I was still the short stack. I was 2nd in chips by the time I won my seat. You wanna talk about a weak-tight final table? It was a cherry picker's paradise.

Hey kids! We're playin' the $750K Guaranteed tomorrow.

Thursday, October 04, 2007


Online Poker

I have registered to play in the PokerStars World Blogger Championship of Online Poker!

This Online Poker Tournament is a No Limit Texas Holdem event exclusive to Bloggers.

Registration code: 7832825

We should set a line on how many of y'all finish below my dead stack.

Count Me Out

I will NOT be playing in the PokerStars World Championship of Blogger Poker Playing Online People (I think that's the correct name of the event). This is because poker hates me.

No, not really. At the point when the cards for the PokerStars Event Unmatched in Historical Significance Plus Bloggers are in the air, I will be crawling into my 5th (6th, 7th) Bloody Mary of the day while hoping for a seat in some Vegas sportsbook, while explaining "Tampa 2" coverage to Div and prematurely counting all the money I will make from fading the picks of DonkeyPuncher and Uncle Bracelet.

Were I going to be home in my desert outpost, I would also have to find a computer to play the PokerStars Universal Blogger Pageant because, as you all know, I am now a Mac user and though online reports say a Mac client is on the near horizon for PokerStars, it ain't there yet (no, I am not installing windows on my Mac or paying any fees). Rest assured, I'm looking forward to that day because I've been missing the Crazy Re-Buy like...uh...crazy.

Of course, I will sign up, proudly display the blinky ad and give PokerStars access to my vast readership.

In all sincerity, I love PokerStars and am a little bummed I won't be able to make it this time 'round. Best of luck to all y'all out there and bring home the title of PokerStars Most Excellent Blogging Poker Guy/Gal.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Key West Cliff Notes

Best Unheeded Advice

Iggy, on Thursday night in South Beach: "The key to lasting all weekend is staying away from liquor. Let's make a pact."

Within the hour, Jager Bombs arrived.

Second Best Unheeded Advice

Me, to DonkeyPuncher: "Don't do that third one, dude."

He did. And puked before dinner.

Dirty Greeks

With Joe's Stone Crab closed, we ended up at a Greek Restaurant for dinner. It was loud, there was table belly dancing and every now and then, the waiters would gather handfuls of napkins and toss them in the air, screaming "Oopa!" (which doubled as the name of the restaurant; very clever those Greeks). Frequently, the napkins would land on our plates of food, which would have been only a minor nuisance had they not initially gathered the napkins from the floor.

Most Shocking Self-Realization

I can't drink tequila any more. One shot killed me on Saturday night, taking me from Drunken Giddiot to Gasping Potential Puker in 1.5 oz. The heartburn continues to reverberate 40 hours later. I think they might have actually served me lighter fluid and half my esophagus is now gone.

Best Prop Bet

Lazy, hungover Saturday afternoon at the ACH Compound. It had been an afternoon of college pigskin and poker, none of us moving swiftly. There were three Lazy-Boys lined up across from the TV and the inhabitants therein had not moved in some time, in fact, seemed to have become one with their chairs. DP and Grubby wagered on which would (could?) get up first. Each time one stirred, the tension thickened and each time they stayed put, laughter thundered.

Two Things I Did For the First Time in My 40+ Years

Rode a mechanical bull and did jello shots.

Jello Shots? Really?

DP and his brother each bought an entire tray of jello shots from waitresses. One can not demure in the face of such generosity, especially when they offer to actually feed it to you.

Wardrobe Changes

Thursday: 1
Friday: 1
Saturday: 0

What I Wagered On

Pool, The Boxer, Galaga, Turtle Races (rigged), Mechanical Bull Riding, Underwater swimming distance

Inside Joke With the Most Legs

"So...I'm in middle position with pocket 3s..."

Summary: Damage potentially irrevocable. Life span shortened. Totally worth it.

Thanks to Al and the crew for another priceless weekend.