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Friday, November 16, 2012

Now That's More Like It!!!

If someone told you that in 1 week of poker tournaments, they had made 3 final tables, and was still down on the would look at them with that one left eyebrow arched up and that crooked smirk on your face, right? Of COURSE you would. And well...that is the case with this Monkey. But...and this is a nice, big, fat but...the deficit just shrank up considerably after last night.

I know that when I last wrote, I was about at the end of my wits. Then, I'm pretty sure...I went in the next day and watched my aces lose three times...twice busting out of the tourneys that it happened in. I was getting destroyed in cash game too, which just compounded my ills. I was flopping a straight on the third hand of a SNG...with a player having raised preflop and getting 5 callers. It was like..."wow, I just flopped the nuts...I'm going to have a nice chiplead right out of the a SNG...which, with a big chiplead to start, is nearly automatic for me to win." Well, the guy (original raiser) did, in fact lead out...and was again called by TWO other players...before I shipped all which he auto-called (since he had flopped a set) while the others folded. He would river a boat. And I was out.

Then I got deep in the 7pm tourney. Things were going pretty smooth. It had that 'on my way to the final table' feeling about it. Then Miss Horseface raises UTG. We both start this hand with close to the same stack of about 40k. She raised (at 600/1200) to 3500. I re-raise her on the button to 8500 with JJ. She calls (with 77). The flop comes a very favorable 8-9-3. She bets out a rather ridiculous amount of 5000. I re-raise her to 17,000. Leaving...yes, you're following correctly here...about 14k behind. Any chances here that I'm folding folks? Try convincing her of that! She tanks for a long time...staring me down in a very amateurish way...then going all in, and cringing when I call.

"Oh no! I didn't think you had anything! I guess I made a bad read....."  I didn't say anything...but saw her two sevens and just waited for the dealer to reward her stupidity, which he did...with a seven on the damn river. Then had to listen to her empty apology. Yeah yeah...blah blah blah..I get it...your stupid! It always makes me just irritated as fuck when you have those fairly new players who want to mix in all these 'poker terms' and ill-timed phrases to explain their goofy-ass plays...when all they really meant to say was..."I am not good at poker yet, and I honestly have no idea what I was thinking there...I guess my stupid play just got lucky."  I would rather they say that. It's like the person who claims they aren't a bad student...they're just a bad 'test taker.' Oh, you mean that part that determines most of your grade? So what your saying're stupid?  Don't tell me you 'made a bad read' when you don't even know HOW to make a read...or know what it is you are 'reading.' I could have been a fucking totem pole making that play and a good player would have known their 77 was trailing to an over pair. Everything about how I played that hand screamed 'HE HAS A FUCKING OVER PAIR HORSEFACE!'

Yeah, so whatever...I didn't win that night. That was three nights ago. Two nights the 7pm' 2nd event of the day, after busting in the noon $400...where my AA lost to 22, I would finally put everything together. I don't remember much now...but I did manage to make the final table. And while I was dragging around one of the shortest stacks for most of the tourney...I went on a heater and pulled to 2nd in chips with 8 left. It was pretty much me and this Euro with the stupidest jacket I think I've ever seen. I couldn't help it...I was all over this guy about his jacket. It do I explain this thing? Oh! Shit...this is easy! It looked like (but worse...shinier) the jacket those fellas on the race horses wear. It was so came up to above his stomach. I asked him...if I knocked him out, if I could have his jacket so it would never get worn in public again? But this guy loved this stupid jacket. He thought it was really awesome. The jacket kind of became the focal point of the whole tourney and all the players. 

The 'jacket' would end up knocking me out in 5th for $1200. Which...not lying, never have I been so irritated about accepting $1200. I thought I had this guy, finally. He was chipleader, and I was just behind him...and the other three were dying a slow, blinding-out-death. I could have easily just sat there...dicked around eating my cucumbers in balsamic vinaigrette sauce...and waited to get 2 or 3-handed. But I didn't. So when I raised with AQ...and 'The Jacket' re-raised me...I just figured he was playing tough guy. I call. The flop comes A-Q-10. Nice. Right? He was first to act....and he just shoved all in! For like 300k. Pretty sure the blinds were only like 2500/5000. Well...I sure wasn't putting him on a set of aces...I mean...who would make that strange play? Maybe this guy. But if I was going to raise...then call a re-raise with that hand...and THAT was the flop? Folding would seem pretty stupid. I make the call....and with the chance to own 80% of the chips on the table with 4 (one on death watch-him!) players left...would probably waltz to the $5200 first prize. I made the right call. He turned over KK. Yes!!! I hadn't even gotten the excitement out of my soul before watching the dealer slapped a fucking jack on the turn. What the??? NOOOOOOOOO!!!!! I needed an ace or a queen on the river...and what he gave me instead was a four....and a complete reversal of fortunes. I'm out!?? No fucking way!!!?? So you will understand why $1200 felt like $12.

At least I was smart and opted NOT to go play cash game. I went straight to my hotel. I was a positive day...but. Well, I don't need to explain the 'but' I don't think.

Yesterday I decided to NOT play the $600 noon tourney. I had some paperwork to get caught up on. That and I slept until about noon, having gotten in at about 3am. I left my room about 2:45...and walked the whole 2.2 miles...on my continued mission of losing 10-15 lbs on this trip. Those walks are great. I got there at 3:25...only missing a little bit. Buy into the $200 3pm Big Bounty tourney. And at my first table...I get the 'guy who never folds after he has raised.' In his defense, I've had him at my table several times in the past few days...and he is a very solid player...and handles his losing hands (often times bad beats) with a lot of class. He is one of those guys who likes to min raise constantly. Well...he would cause me to have to fire a second bullet in this deal. After winning a few pots early....I then lost a pretty big one...turning a straight..then losing to an OMRG's flush. Then...on a board of 9-7-6....with two clubs...and me holding Ac9c....I bet...get called...turn the 10 of clubs...and get it all in against a guy who had limped in with 5-8 (flopped straight) and miss the flush. Now crippled, I double up two hands later...and grow that to 3500 a couple hands later. That's when never-fold guy raises to 600 UTG...gets two callers, and I ship 3500 with 10-10. He calls (with KJoff), the others fold...and he turns a jack and rivers a king. REBUY!

The second bullet went a lot better. I would collect 5 bounties in total. I had one beautiful suckout. Holding AdJd...and only 58k with the blinds at 6k/12k...I didn't have much choice when this super-aggro punk who'd been annoying me all week, and was on the female dealer's last nerve with his assholish attitude (he was in the 1-seat) raises to 25k...the older guy next to me (and who I knew was pretty tight) went all in for 47k. I had to move, knowing I was likely behind...but probably not going to see a better hand than this. So jackass over there...mulls the decision. Really? What's to mull? He raised to 25k...and there is now about 140k in the pot...and he only has to call both of us for $33k more...and he is sitting on about 200k. But he folds. shitty was HIS hand? Well the all in guy has AQ. Ouch. But I flop a flush! Nice. And he was drawing dead. Even turned another diamond. That got me back into the game. And I really never looked back after that...although...I did drop to about 80k after that winning hand put me at $145k. The blinds were brutal...and if you weren't getting were dead. 

Well, I did get cards...pretty much all final table long. And it was about time...because I had really been pretty card dead the whole tourney. Making the most of the ones I did manage to get. I never got aces until we were three handed...and when I did finally get them, raised small on the button, only to get zero action. I had the same thing happen twice with action. We got three-handed and it was me, this really nice, jovial, older guy from Brisbane, Australia...a man whose name was John Jolley...pretty fitting. He was hilarious. At one point, he bluffed that asshole in seat 1 out of a HUGE pot...then showed him a worthless 8-2 offsuit after the giant douchebag folded. Which put him on super tilt. I was really entertained by him...and we struck up a good rapport right away. Which really came in handy later.

Super Douche finally busted, making his last 'bad move' of the tourney. Then the only annoying player left was the Asian kid who thought he was the shit. Between you and me and the guy in the corner playing with the mouse? (I have no idea what that just meant) Anyone who wears the t-shirt they just got from the event they are playing in? Is an assclown. Sorry. But they are. No one even semi-cool wears event 'schwag' AT the event. So this guy was 'one of those' guys. Well, after he decides at 6000/12000 to just bomb away his whole stack for a blind vs. blind spot...with, ahem....5-7 off (which I had also folded) he got caught by the big blind with QQ. Or did he? Nope...he flops open ended, and rivers a straight...and knocks the guy out. Gross. And stupid. There is, as most players with a Poker IQ over a grapefruit could tell you...nothing to justify that play. Nothing. Jamming his whole stack to save his small blind, and pick up the BB and antes? Nice play.

So a short while later...after he blasted his whole stack into my BB...I remarked, keep it up with that kamikaze poker,'s gonna bite you on the ass. So what does he do? Oh...well, first he takes the comment as a racial slur. Because, get it? He's Asian? See...what he was doing? Was playing a kamikaze style of poker. Period. Whether he was Asian or was straight up Kamikaze poker. So get over it, shit head. Then he rebutted by telling me "At least I don't sit around waiting for AA while blinding out of the tourney." Now...I won't lie...I've heard this 'accusation' quite a few times in the past. It's not totally inaccurate...though suggesting I'm waiting for only AA is kind of silly. But yeah...I am patient, and I do make proper decisions in the proper spots most of the time. I just don't think it's ever 'the right play' to just recklessly jam my stack in bad spots with bad hands.  This twerpy fuck wouldn't let up...and I wasn't even talking to him...just listening to him. He kept infusing the 'kamikaze' expression into everything he was saying.

Finally I just had to tell him...."buddy, let it go. Okay? I haven't said a word to you since...okay? I think it would be sensational if you would just zip it up." I had a chance to whack him AND another guy and get three-handed with me holding 75% of the chips. I raised with 5-5. Another player shoved an amount that I would have called...but then shit head goes all in for too much to call. I fold. He had AK. The shorter stack had A8. I would have held. Oh well. We get three-handed. He had been begging to do a deal since we got to 9. I told him forget it. In my defense, I was telling my table when we had 16 left and I was grinding 10 bb's that I wouldn't be agreeing to any chop deals if I was lucky enough to get deep again. And I sure wasn't doing it now...especially with his annoying ass. Well, the Aussie guy would bust him. I was pretty thrilled with that.

So we were heads up...and he had a slight lead on me. I won a few hands. We were pretty close to even...when I asked if he wanted to chop. It made sense. First was $5400. Second was $3200. A chop would give us both $4300. And neither of us would take the tax hit. (a finish over $5000 gets stung) He said he would do the deal...but lets play three more hands. Okay. So on that first hand? He limps into my BB. I don't raise with QJh. Why? Because this guy limped in a LOT with big hands. I checked. And the flop came J-7-4. He bets 40k.  I raise to 100k. He goes all in. Shit. Well, he'd done this a lot...with a lot less in his hand. Dammit, I call. He turns over KK. Oh shit! And it holds. And I think I've fucked myself out of the deal, and it just cost me $1100. But? He didn't go back on it. Which he could have easily done...since we hadn't played three more hands. How refreshing. A 'stand-up' guy at a POKER TABLE??? I was quite blown away by that move. Well, Mr. John Jolley of Australia won a big fan in Mr. Monkey. We collected our money...and I walked out of the Venetian, feeling like I had just shaken a big, damn anvil off of my back. 

So, I'm not sure what happened, but I just had two good nights in a row. I almost always follow up a decent/good day of poker with a disaster. But it didn't happen this time. I am still down for the trip...but man, oh man...what a time to pick up $5k on the bankroll (last two nights) with the Mega satellites into the $2500 Main starting today!? I was in danger of missing out on everything...having already burned all the cash I brought AND having hit the ATM three times already. So now...what I'm hoping to play today's noon a seat...then play the later mega...and win that one...for another $2500 infusion to the bankroll. Then take tomorrow (Saturday), watch college football...then come back and play Flight B (Main Event has two starting days, Saturday and Sunday) on Sunday. That would be the ideal scenario. Now...granted, things in this aggravating game seldom go according to plan...but you never know. 

I am really missing Carley and Squirrel...but I was miserable knowing that I'd been here for a week...had done nothing but lose my backer's money...and hadn't won ANYTHING to take home to my girls. So last night, and the night before...have me holding my head quite a bit higher...and has restored my confidence, at the most critical time in this trip. And Squirrel just loaded up Carley a while ago...and is headed for N. Alabama to spend the weekend with her family...who are SO excited to see Carley again. I tell ya, that kid is so loved, its not even funny. I hope nothing happens to me, health-wise...but if it does, I know, 100%...that she will always have nothing to worry about when it comes to being cared for. It makes me happy to know how many people besides me that care about her. I have been seeing her a lot on Skype...everyone was will NEVER love something so much as you will your child. I can be having the worst day...and the world seems like its falling apart, and the minute I see her face...and look at her bright eyes...and that cute smile cross her face, I start to get teary-eyed with joy...and get a little flutter in my stomach. I made that! That little creature loves me. And depends on me. What a powerful feeling that is. 

On that note...a really, really good guy in poker, Leo Whitt...just had his son. He sent me a photo on my phone...cute little bugger, too. I could tell from his message that he was feeling what I was STILL feeling...when I had mine. Congrats to Leo and his wife!

Well, that's about it for the day, I think. Hope you all enjoy reading some GOOD news for a change...its been pretty negative in here the past 6 weeks or so!



Rakewell said...

"First was $5400. Second was $3200. A chop would give us both $4300. And neither of us would take the tax hit. (a finish over $5000 gets stung)"

Taxes are owed whether or not the casino reports the win to the IRS. So what you're admitting here is that you don't report your wins unless the casino does. I.e., you're a tax cheat, and you commit the felony of perjury when you sign your tax return knowing that it's dishonest.


Poker Monkey said...

Rakewell: You're response provides me with more fuel to stoke the flames of why I find the 'people of poker' to be such hate-mongering, drama-producing vermin. See, you take a 'comment' relating to a tax situation and decide (all on your own) to turn that into me being a tax cheat. Comical and really just sad. Here is the reality of the situation...just to put your mind at ease:

I carry around a little black book. I enter every single buy in. Both tourneys and cash game. With the results. At the end of each year...I total up ALL my buy in, and ALL of my winnings. I turn this, which I enter into a spreadsheet...along with ALL my buy in receipts, to my accountant...who I've been using now for the past five years. I file every year as a professional gambler. Along with all that, I turn in any tax form I happen to have received from any and all casinos. See...I am about as complicit as a player could possibly be. The tax implication in the tourney mentioned here was only brought up because the other players were concerned about they are casual, part time players...without numerous buy ins to off set any taxed winnings, or the desire to be 'inconvenienced' by the additional tax burden.

I hope this clears things up for you a little bit, Rakewell. Kudos to you, however, for at least signing your name to your comment...unlike so many other 'ANONYMOUS' posters.


Rakewell said...

I'll take your word for it. Thanks for clarifying. I trust you can see, however, that your wording readily lends itself to the implication I originally took from it. Like you, I report every dollar in and out, so it doesn't change a thing for me if the casino issues a W-2 form. It annoys me when I hear other players trying to dodge getting one, because it means that they're intending to cheat on their taxes, which just shifts the tax burden to those of us who are honest about it.