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Friday, January 11, 2013

Day 1 from Choctaw

Hey folks. Coming to you from Choctaw...in Durant, Oklahoma...a place I've never played before. My immediate impression is that it is a wonderful facility for poker tourneys. It's a really nice casino. The staff is all very friendly. My hotel room is incredibly spacious...and VERY close to the tournament poker area...which is so nice. I got here Thursday at 6am after an incredibly long road trip. Granted it was made a lot easier with my four RedBox movies...but I had to pull over at one point for 2 and a half hours while a powerful storm swept through central Louisiana. It was the third incident of hydroplaning while going only 45-50 that convinced me to pull it over! 

Something else was learned. I will never make that drive again and try to save the extra 40 miles by taking the county road 'shortcut' from  just beyond Shreveport to Durant...choosing instead to take interstates to Dallas then north to Durant. You'd have thought I'd learned my lesson in all those early road trips to Las Vegas every summer...but somehow, being hip to their little game, I managed to NOT get any speeding tickets. It so ridiculous the scam the State of Texas runs with their highway patrol. It's no wonder their the only state in the union that has a balanced budget. They make all their money off scam speeding tickets. You are cruising along on that county road with a 70mph speed limit...then BOOM! Although you can't SEE a town...a sign tells you there is one in the area...and the speed limit plummets from 70 to 50 then to 40 and 30 within a mile. The next thing you see is a cop sitting in a spot, like one of those cheapo do-it-yourself car washes...or a gas station that is no longer in business, with their lights off. Yeah...I see you, asshole! Just waiting to get that person who hasn't managed to get from 70 down to 30. Or who is zoning and didn't even realize the speed limit had gone down. That was me a couple years ago. well, like I said, I'm hip to it now...so I managed to get my car down to 'pit road speed' before incurring the wrath of the State of Texas!!!

I know I haven't been very good about blogging lately. But I think you all know I've had a pretty good excuse (Carley Grace!!!) So for this trip, I've decided to something kind of unique. I managed to sell all 50 of my shares to 14 different people...and I want to be really good about giving them a comprehensive report as close to daily as possible. There have been trips in the past where I just get so tired, and play so late...and the days run so close together...that the updated spreadsheet gets neglected, as well as the daily summary. So I figure if I have the obligation of reporting to them ranking first in my list of responsibilities, and then reporting to you guys a close third behind my family, I thought I would try to kill two birds with one stone. So I am copy/pasting the report that I am emailing out to my investors...well, most of it, anyway. Save me time...as time seems to always run out on me when there is a tournament looming.

So without further ado....here is my DAY 1 report to my investors.

Wow!
 
What an eye-opening experience Day 1 was! The drive up here was a bitch! With a rainstorm like I've never seen, forcing me to park it in a rest area for 2 1/2 hours. Finally got in at 6am, then spent an hour dealing with an absolute idiot at the front desk. Went over and registered, took a nap, and returned at noon. Got off to a promising start. Had a relatively decent table...and the turnout was good, nearly 500 players. 
 
In level 4...a very aggressive player min raises from 150 to 300...gets four callers, and I completed in the SB with Ac2c. The flop comes A-2-9 with two hearts. Bingo! (I thought) I check. The guy bets 750. I am putting him on something like A10 or AJ...given his history. I raise to 1750...not wanting to let him draw out on me, but also willing to build the pot a little and hope to fade a face card on the turn. He immediately shoves all in. Weird? I look at the board and convince myself that he either thinks I'm on a flush draw...and has AJ or AQ, even AK...like I think....or HE is on a flush draw and trying to pressure me. Why all in? For a lot? Made no sense...and it was Level 4 and I'm thinking about how nice, at that stage of the tourney it would be to get to over 25k, and to get this guy off my table. I make the call. He has 22. 
 
Oh boy. Bad read. I need an ace and don't get it. Bummer. I get crippled and busted an orbit later.
 
I played three sit n gos after that. And you can all breath easy...I'm playing SNG's on my own dime...trying to make some money for the 'fam' while not putting your money at risk! And that's good news for you! AT least yesterday!!! 
 
SNG #1. $125. Get a pretty early double up. Cruising. A win would sure be nice. Wait? Time to get OMRG'd (Old Man Run Good) At 50/100...a guy ships 900 under the gun. Old man calls...for 100...not seeing the all in. When told it's 900...he decides to call. It's obvious he has a shitty hand. So when I look down at QQ in the SB....I move all in for 3200. I have him covered by 525. He....CALLS! With A4 offsuit. What the.....???? And I'm just begging the dealer (in my head!) to NOT give this idiot an ace. The all in guy has J10d. Flop comes 3-5-6 and I cringe. When you see flops like that? You just KNOW you are about to get shanked! And I did. Turns a 7. good god. Now I'm crippled. Oh...three hands later? I get QQ again! I get it in...and run into....KK!!! Perfect. He holds. I'm out 6th.
 
Next SNG...a $70 thrillfest....I get 4th. No story. Just lost to K10 to seal my fate...I had AJ. Good 'ol King Ten!!!
 
Third SNG...another $120...I busted 7th. 
 
What I saw on Day 1...is that there are a LOT of players who get it in REALLY really REALLY bad...and seem to get rewarded a LOT on the turn and river. Which is really annoying and painful...but at the same time, its a good thing too...if you can manage to exercise good pot control...because if you can fade the awful suckout...they are going to pay off a LOT. So, knowing I'm going to take a lot of crazy disgusting beats up here probably, I'm also going to have a really good chance to build up big stacks courtesy of bad play.
 
Well...that happened. In the 7pm nightly....a $200 buy in. I got into that one in Level 4...since I was still in the 5pm tourney. I sat down with 3000 chips and the blinds at 100/200. Folded for five hands and pick up AA in early position at a table that was already showing that it was incredibly crazy and aggressive. So I limped. A guy makes it 450. (thank you!) Guy in the BB calls the 450. To me, I make it 1250. The initial raiser goes all in (thank you again!) for a total of 3400. BB (who proves later how bad and loose he is on numerous occasions) calls...with KING TEN! And I of course call. Other guy has KK. My aces hold...and bingo...I am up to 9000.
 
I pretty much cruised the rest of the tourney. Made a couple of real nice bluffs I was proud of. But mainly just got a big stack and bullied my table when we got within 3 of the money...and built up a stack that put me in the top 3. Would make the final table, 2nd in chips. First was $4200. 2nd was $2400. Those were the ONLY two spots I was looking at. I announced when the topic came up with three tables left...that I wouldn't be chopping. So at 13 (paying 12) someone was chirping about paying 13th place (out of pocket). I said no. And continued pounding on the blinds.
 
Final table was going pretty smooth, guys were dropping like flies. Once we got to 4th...I did the math and realized we were now about even on the day...which was some relief. Well...WE were even. I was still down...since the SNG's were good for $370 in losses for me. Nope...4th wasn't going to cut it. I needed to AT LEAST get third...which shouldn't be too tough since two of the players had only 6-10 BB's. The chipleader was a guy I am familiar with...and who plays like an absolute maniac. So his raises meant very little. 
 
He was raising from the button on my BB EVERY time he had the chance. And I really wanted to get into his stack...knowing I would have to eventually anyway. Plus, the last thing I wanted was to get heads up with the guy and be at a 4-1 disadvantage. So he raises again. I have 3c4c in the BB and call. I get what I think is a dream flop. 4-5-2. I check. He makes a c-bet...which is always automatic with this guy. I don't really have enough to effectively re-raise (blinds were huge at this point) and it wouldn't matter...how this guy played...if I had re-raised, he would have just put the pressure BACK on me and shoved anyway. And besides...I was certain I had him beat. I shove all in. HE SNAP CALLS WITH 9-2!!! NINE TWO. That's uh...bottom pair with no draw. I'm good...with the chance to get better. Instead...the dealer turns him a freaking nine! And I brick the river. 
 
Out 4th. For $1280. Sickening. I win that hand...I have a MASSIVE chiplead...and all three guys are below 10 BB's...and I very likely win the $4200 going away. But instead, a disappointing $1280. Which...yes I'm grateful a little, and felt good with the run...but damn, so close! So I went and played an hour worth of cash game to check out THAT scene (nutso, by the way) and tried to get something to eat. They had a fiasco with the server...who ended up walking out in the middle of her shift...and I had a manager and some other lady profusely apologizing, giving me back the money I had pre-paid...and offering me something else...though they were out of almost everything. So I just thanked them for their concern, accepted their offer of a comped meal my next time in...and went to the food court and found a caeser salad...which became the first thing I had to eat all day. Got to bed at about 3am.
 
It was nice sleeping in. The tourney today has two flights...one at noon and one at 5pm. They do the same thing tomorrow...for the same tourney...guess 4 flights is how they are going to make their $500k guarantee!!! So I'm catching up on all my pool stuff (and sleep!!!) before I go play that $580 at 5pm. Hopefully run good in that, bag up a good stack, and not have to try again tomorrow (Saturday).
 
StAY TUNED!!!
 
MONK
 
So there you go. You can expect more than a few of these reports. Hope you don't mind! I had a chance to meet a lot of you blog readers yesterday...and again, I tried to keep a smile on my face when chatting with you...but up until the 7pm tourney...I was having a horrendous, frustrating day and was trying to keep positive. So if I came across as rude, I apologize, but hopefully I didnt.
 
I would be remiss if I didn't mention our FANTASTIC weekend of football! Most of you know I'm a diehard, lifelong Seahawks fan...and a huge fan of the Crimson Tide. Last year...carrying Carley Grace in her belly...and feeling her kicking like crazy all tthroughout the game...we attended the BCS Title Game in New Orleans, and it was awesome! Well Carley Grace is now two-for-two as she sat with us in the living room watching Alabama spank the Fighting Irish Monday Night to take their 2nd title in a row and 3rd in four years. Wow! That crystal ball hasn't left the state of Alabama (Auburn in 2010) in FIVE years now! That's a pretty nice claim to fame! I really didn't think Notre Dame would beat Alabama...but leading up to the game, watching all the stuff about Manti Teo and hearing how the 'new Notre Dame coaches won their first National Title in their third year' was starting to make me a wee bit nervous. But after that first drive...where Bama just meticulously marched down the field like a fine-tuned machine...I sat back, looked at Squirrel...and told her "Oh...we got this baby!"
 
The day before...I was watching Seattle fall behind 14-0...and beginning to get text messages and Facebook posts from people telling me my Seahawks were dead. I wasn't convinced. Yeah, it was our biggest deficit of the season. But RG3 was struggling. And I figured if we could just score once and get the defense to settle in, we'd be back in it. DONE! Closed to 14-13 at the half...and was feeling like we might win. But then we fumble on first and goal at the 2 in the 3rd quarter...and I started feeling like we were going to blow it. Well, as you know...we didn't. We put two more scores on the board..the defense knocked out RG3...and played lights out...and we cruised to a 24-14 win that wasn't even really that close. I was on Cloud 9 the rest of the night leading into Monday. We head to Atlanta...and I'm really kind of shocked at the respect Vegas is giving us...making us only 1 pt underdogs. Wow. At the #1 seed? The 13-3 Falcons? And we are only a 1-pt dog? I'm sure not going to get over-confident...as Atlanta is a very good team. But I like our team. And I think we are playing with that confidence and enthusiasm that a young team gets sometimes when they get on a roll and don't stop. It's exciting. It's like 2005 all over again. Just hope if we get lucky and make it to the Super Bowl, that they don't let that douchebag Bill Leavy ref the game! (CLICK THE LINK)   
 
Okay...well, I'm going to cut this short, as I still have a lot of things to tend to before going to play at 5pm. 
 
MONK 
 

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