Archive for the 'Poker' Category

Mar 28 2011

Long Overdue Poker Update

Published by under Poker

It’s been a while since my last poker update. I haven’t played much poker for a while. I took a break from poker around May of last year. When I started my new job in June, there just wasn’t time as I was trying to get up to speed with everything going on there. Pile on the normal chaos of a family with 5 kids, and it just wasn’t a good time.

Well, I’m trying to get back into it. So one of the first items of business was to update my records that I had been keeping. I really didn’t have much of an idea how bad last year was, but I knew last year was my first losing year playing poker since, well, ever. That wasn’t a good feeling. I had losing days before, obviously, and even losing months. Never had a losing year before.

No matter where you look, there is evidence that the games are getting tougher. I’m not convinced they aren’t beatable, though. The itch to play has come back too. So I have intentions of scratching it and trying to get back to winning some again. Poker has provided a lot of fringe benefits for the family and it’s still something I enjoy. I really want to get back to that.

Down to dollars and cents:

As I said, last year was the first losing year I’ve had playing poker. All inclusive (bonuses and rakeback) I believe I lost about $1600 last year nearest I can piece together from everything. If that’s off, it’s only off by a few hundred one way or another due to a miscalculated cashout. Since I was playing a lot of 100nl nlhe and plo, that really isn’t that bad. An 16 buyin swing is the equivalent of a bad day, basically. I pretty bad day, but a bad day still. I’ve had a few days that were more than that won or lost in the past. It was just part of the game.

When I quit, I was a bit frustrated with poker, but it wasn’t really with the amount I had lost. That was well within my comfort level of what I could lose. In fact, a bigger hit to my BR last year were cashouts (who knew a new job with a really decent pay bump could be so expensive) where I took far more out of poker than I had lost. The frustrating part was I didn’t feel like I was playing well. Those losses came over 66k hands of poker. I wasn’t making the right adjustments and wasn’t playing what I should have been.

Taking a year off is giving me a new perspective and desire to do well. Mostly to just have fun. I’m not depositing any more money. I have around $1k in my accounts right now and plan on attempting to build that up. Along with a new ambition to do well, I’m also switching games. A limit game this time. I’m going to try and see if I can make a successful run in limit omaha 8 or better. Those of you who don’t play poker and have made it this far, I don’t expect you to know what that is. Those of you who do play poker and have made it this far, I’ll give you a minute to stop laughing…

I’ve alway liked omaha. I’ve always liked split pot games (usually the 7 card stud variety). Mostly I’m intrigued by some of the success that Adam Schwartz (the podcast host) has had with the game and I think games like these are less saturated with good regulars which should give me a decent chance to do well. Each time I’ve switched games, it’s taught me new concepts I’ve always been able to take back to other games. I don’t expect to play just O8, FFS. It’s just my carrot right now. Hopefully a carrot that leads me back to where I had been in poker before last year.

I’ll post updates when I have them. O8 is a slow game and I can’t play as many tables as I could with nlhe. I don’t expect the 150k hands a year like I was able to do. I’ll be lucky if it’s more like 50k hands, but I’ll put up information as I have it.

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May 23 2010

Loose Ends

Published by under Personal,Poker

Gonna just give some updates on things going on over the last month and a half. I did finish my 30k hand goal for April, but unfortunately, I ended the month pretty horribly. Over the last 6k hands, I lost 10 buyins which is about $1000.

I would be lying if I said that in my bad slide I was playing perfectly. I was tilting a bit and some of my play definitely reflected that. After going through the hands, I am convinced it was mostly due to a bad run. There were 2 hands in there that I lost to river 2 outers that were a combined $600 pots (hand 1, hand 2). There was also a handful of hands where I flopped either a set, a straight or a flush only to get 50% of my stack in before the river only to lose to straights, flushes or full houses on the river. And yes, I paid off. Sometimes when you are in cooler situation after cooler situation, it gets hard to get away from those. See Daniel Negreanu on, well, any season of High Stakes Poker.

Here’s what the month ended up looking like.

April 2010 chart

It really wasn’t that bad overall, though. After rake back and some small tournament cashes, I only lost about $100. While the bad run really tilted me, when I reflect on it as a whole, it could have been a lot worse. I had 3 months last year with worse results. 2 of them where I lost more than $1000 overall and still ended the year up like $10k*.

Last year, my stake started around May so hopefully I can duplicate those results again over the next 7 months. I’m not starting out awesome. I decided to take a break from NLHE since I was running so bad and I do think it was affecting me mentally. So what did I do? I played some PLO. I’ve now started out the gate of this month with a steep dowslide. PLO is the Murphy’s Law of poker games. If there is a bad card that can come on the turn, rest assured it will come. Actually, I’m up slightly on the only game I’ve played any significant hands, but down overall. I don’t want to make it 2 losing months in a row, so gonna work on that over the next week.

For personal stuff, it’s been a typical end of the school year for the most part. Been just super busy with a lot of stuff going on. We have basically birthday season coming up with 4 of the kids having their birthdays between now and the end of August. We had Zoe’s party yesterday and today is spent recovering from that which consists of cleaning, dealing with tired/crabby kids and then more cleaning.

There are a couple of unique situations this year, though. For one, almost all of the kids have been sick over the last week (plus a couple of days). The only one who has avoided it has been Clayton. The second one is I have a new job that I will be starting next month. I won’t go into too much detail on it until I start it, but I am looking forward to it and am coming into it being very optimistic.

* Disclaimer of that was under the stake so I didn’t get to keep all that.

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Dec 13 2009

Resurrecting the Dead

Published by under Personal,Poker

Wow. Has it really been almost 4 months since I’ve updated this?

“The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

While I don’t think I’m going to hell… well, at least not for failing to update my blog, I have had the good intentions of keeping this updated. I fell a bit short. As usual, it certainly wasn’t due to a lack of content so lets see if I can correct this bad habit of neglecting this thing.

Gonna keep this “resurrecting my blog” post short and just give a few updates on things.

The family is doing pretty well. I wanted to do a whole “Sadie is 1″ post back in September, but I think that ship has passed so won’t go back to revisit that. Just gonna try and do better going forward.

We got pretty busy around our house this year, and while I would like to blame it on having 5 kids, I think it’s more to do with the older kids getting… well… older and just having more stuff going on. We are taking a break from taekwondo for the first time in almost 4 years, so hopefully that will help us get our sanity back.

Poker has been going pretty decent and I’m having a decent year so far. Gonna continue my streak of not having a losing year which looked like was possibly in danger if you asked me back in the first quarter. I won’t go into to much, but I’ll give some results since my last post. I made money in all but 1 month when I lost about $1400 in October. August I made $3100. September was my gem month where I made $3700. In November, I was on my way to competing with September, but took a bit of a slide at the end of the month and only banked $2200. I’m gonna try and be a bit more diligent with my posts, so again, will just cover things noteworthy in the future and not relive what has passed.

Work is the one area I wouldn’t mind see being a bit better. I don’t really want to get into gory details and I do feel fortunate to not be in the situation that so many people are in currently, but I’ll just say while I like my job and the people, I don’t really care for the work I’m doing and really just am sitting back and hoping things work themselves out at this point.

As I said, I’ve had tons of content, so I’ll try and find time to get the stories of my life out there a bit more frequently. I’ve set the bar pretty low this year, so shouldn’t be hard to hit. Hurray for low bars!!!

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Aug 17 2009

The 1k Club

Published by under Poker

Friday was a special day for in poker. For the first time ever, I earned at least $1k in 1 day at the cash tables. Of course, this is the highest I’ve ever played regularly before. I had taken shots at $200nl before, but I have been able to stick it out in that game for the whole month. Both have been very good for my mentality when it comes to poker.

But this is intended on being a weekly poker update. I was attempting to play 10k hands this last week in hopes to catch up to my 30k monthly goal, but some family stuff ended up getting in the way. I needed to play 6k hand between Friday and Sunday to accomplish that, but only managed about 3300 hands falling short with only 7500 hands for the week. Despite missing my goal, I can’t be all that upset as my results for the week made up for any disappointment I felt.

Driven by my $1200 day on Friday, I ended the week $1900 on the positive side of things even with losing money 3 days this week. Alright, alright. They weren’t terrible days with the largest only being 1 buyin or around $200, but still, it took quite a few hands out where I wasn’t making money and had to make the ground back up.

My month is going well too as I’m up almost $3k so far and well on my way to destroying my previous best, so hopefully I didn’t just jinx myself there, but the games are good. As long as I keep playing well, I don’t see any reason I shouldn’t finish strong. Another month like this, and I’ll soon be posting about my exploits in the 2/4 games. My lofty goal for the year was to hit $400nl and with it being in reach, I feel really good about my game right now.

My graph of my month to date. Isn’t it pretty?

aug1709graph

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Aug 09 2009

Short and Sweet

Published by under Poker

So first week in August is in the books. Was a rough week in terms of me trying to find time to play. That has been putting my 30k hand goal for the month in jeopardy. It was a pretty awful week though. Last weekend we were at my inlaws to see my BIL and his family while they were up from vegas. I still tried to play but got sick on Saturday and didn’t do much of anything but sleep.

The rest of the week, we just had stuff going on. We had 2 taekwondo testings to attend and then this weekend we went to Fargo to visit with my other BIL who is moving his family back to California. Yeah, we’ve been traveling a lot. I still tried the best I could to at least keep up and play as much as I can so I can make a run at Iron Man this month. I can miss 6 days during the month, and still hit it. I’ve used 2 of those up so far so gonna have to be super diligent for the rest of the month.

The little bit of poker I have played has gone well. I’ve been able to stick it out at the 200s and have been running really decent. Let’s just say that if I can maintain this for the month and I hit my 30k hands, I’ll be very happy with my monthly results. I only have 3500 hands put in so far, so that means I’m really gonna have to kick it in the ass if I want to even come close to hitting that. Fortunately, the kids start school in a couple of weeks, so that will hopefully give me a bit more time once they are going to bed at a reasonable hour.

If you want to track my progress, I made a little chart to track my progress to 30k. I’m well on my way, but behind where I would like to be. Looking to catch up this week so hopefully I will have better news to report on that front next time.

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Aug 03 2009

Back in the Black

Published by under Poker

I was trying to look back and it seems I haven’t given a real poker update in a while. I think the last full one was back in January after my atrocious month. I lost nearly $700 that month which forced me to move down to the 25′s and 10′s. I also switched to the full ring games since the variance was killing me and I have friends who have been cleaning up on the full ring games.

I did pretty well at them but really wanted to get back to the stakes I had become accustomed. I was able to play at lower stakes, but was anxious to move up since I knew I could beat them. I was fortunate enough to find some one to stake me for the 100s back at the end of April. I had a bad run there and broke about even through May.

In June, I found some good games and made some adjustments that paid off well. All told, I did just over $3k in that month. My first $3k month ever so I was pretty stoked about that. With the stake, only half of that was my share, but it still was more than plenty to finally but me in the black for the year. Also a good feeling as I hadn’t ever had a loosing year in poker and certainly didn’t want to make this my first.

jun09

My good run also allowed me to move up to the 200s. I have played the 200s before but never other than taking shots or chasing bad players. Progress always feels good. Unfortunately, I had a bad run which is bad when trying to move up stakes. That was what killed me back in January forcing me to drop down stakes. While I still had enough to stay at the 200s, I dropped down early in the month until I built my confidence back up. I had a long break even stretch during which I thought I was playing well. It took me a couple of weeks that I was playing far to passive and it was costing me money. It was difficult to see the leak in my stats so it took me a while to come to that realization.

By the time I made the adjustments, I wasn’t able to overcome the slide I had taken at the 200s but fortunately, I had plenty of bonuses last month that eased the pain. I only suffered a $700 or so slide. Bad enough, but coulda been worse and still put me at a reasonable profit for the stake.

This month, I’m taking another stab at the 200′s as I believe I’ve fixed a lot of my issues. Last month I played about 26k hands and I would like to shoot for 30k this month. I’ll try and post weekly statuses to force me to evaluate my progress. If I can run like I did in June with a higher volume, I expect good things for the month.

But guess what, it’s already the 3rd and I only have 600 hands under my belt. Saturday I had intentions of putting in a few hands but got hit with the flu at my inlaws and really didn’t feel much like playing. Hopefully I can make up my ground. Good news is I am currently on a 5 day streak of winning sessions. In June I ended the month with 13 winning days. Seems like a good sign to me.

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