Saturday, March 24, 2007

Got to get some live play parts I & II

Part I

Sitting at my kitchen table playing online on my laptop is just not hacking it. I have got to get up to Foxwooods and sit down at a real table with real chips and ugly mustard yellow felt under my hands. I have to be able to look someone in the eyes and get a read off them. I have been honing my skills online but my schedule these days doesn't afford me much time to get any serious play in. I take care of the munchkin during the day going to tumblin' tot's, music class and swim lessons and then working evenings. I could forgo sleep but this boy is one grumpy, depressed sleep deprive cranky ass, when I don't get my beauty sleep to many nights in a row. I want to build my bankroll, that's sitting downstairs in my lock box, until I can play at a real level and do some serious fish hunting. It's not that things online haven't been going well they have been but I am not going to go in to specifics because every other time I have either journaled or blog somewhere else about my successes I have gone on a bad beat parade. I have suffered from some hubris before and I think I have gotten that in check but I don't want to but a jinx on it. I have to win a couple more hundred before I can move up a level soon in my live play but it is really hard to do that when you can't get to the casino to play. Once again like I have said work has been interesting and I haven't been able to get any time off, well I have this week, but I am going to go away with the wife for a couple nights and the munchkin will be staying with her grandmother for two nights of complete spoiling and we will get some much needed alone time together. No work, no poker, and we will enjoy it to the max. A big milestone B'day is coming up in a couple of weeks and I would love to spend it playing live but if I don't get to do that I just want the night off from work, go out for a nice dinner and not have to think about anything important for just one day.

Part II

I began typing this post on Saturday night and even though I didn't post it the mere mention of running well put out there in the universe resulted in a bad beat hit parade on Sunday. I am not a superstitious man but playing games of chance for me, chances are I am going to lose a bunch of money. I like poker because knowing the odds and getting your money in with the best of it will pay off in the long run. I was playing Stud8 and things like hitting a set and losing to a higher one or starting with 234s missing the str8 or flush but making a 75432 and losing the low half to a, yes this actually happened, 7543A and getting scooped because he had a A high and I only had a J. Then I looked over my stats and saw that I was winning money at showdowns almost 70% of the time but I was only able to scoop 8% of those pots. I don't mean to tell bad beat stories and this isn't really about the beats it's about creating a positive attitude about playing and looking for the positive in even in the losses. I guess sometimes if you put it out there in some form or another it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. I think the negativity I have been feeling around myself has permeated the cells of my being and usually I am the most optimistic person in the bunch. I am going to start working on some creative visualization exercises and create more positive vibes around me which could be beneficial to my life in general as well as my bankroll.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Sunday and I finally have an Internet Connection...

On Friday it snowed like a mother here in CT and I didn't have to go to work that night and I thought I would do some fish hunting online because I usually don't get home close to 11 pm and I only get to play few hands before I pass out and have to hit the hay. So, I get the call at 3pm that I get to stay home and all the freaks that would risk their lives to workout at the Y would have to what for another day. The munchkin was taking a nap and I fire up PokerStars for some O8. I get some hands in and then I lose my connection and the computer can't find renew my IP address. I run downstairs to the router and reset it and drag the network cable up to bypass my wireless connection to the lap top. Some more tinkering and then I am up and running bypassing the wireless router. My wife's lap top can't connect but she finds one of our neighbors unsecured network to piggie back on, it's slow but she can get things she need to finish up business for the night.

Saturday morning I dig the cars out from the awful job the plowers did, who by the way aren't getting paid because I never signed the contract and the still seem to come even though I would rather they didn't. I go to my instructor's karate tournament and help judge some young kids just starting out in the Tang Soo Do experience, and then head over to Staples to get a new router. I went with the Linksys and got a new network card to match. Drop just over $100 and head home with the expectation that I can handle this. How hard can it be? They give you a CD and you just click away.

Well...things didn't go as expected. I plug everything in and follow all of the directions and nothing was working, even worst I think I screw things up even more. I call the helpline and I am on hold for what seems like forever. I luckly poured a beer before I called and the longer I wait the more I feel like opening up the whiskey I save for cool summer nights with a nice cigar on the porch, but now I am just looking to numb the pain. I finally get someone on the line and he talks me through a couple of things and then says I should use the easy install disc which he is not allowed to talk me through. I get a case number and a more direct line in case this doesn't work. I get jammed up in the same spot and call them back just like I knew I would. I get another guy who has me pinging sites and reconfiguring the admin setting and going back and forth from screen to screen and then low and behold I have a connection and everything is working right and I thanked him for the hour of work he did with me. I enter the kitchen with lap top in hand and announce my victory over the machine and sit down to check my mail. Well needles to say it was the shortest lived victory that I have ever experienced when I lost my connection again. I just shut the laptop and headed to bed because it was worth it and I was beat.

This morning I fired up the laptop and I had a connection and everything seemed to be working great and I was online all morning and then all of a sudden it crapped out again. I decide that I more than likely it's the actually cable modem and head over to COMPUsa which is going out of business, atleast the one in our town, and get one of the last modems they at 30% off. I hold my breath as I plug it in becuase all sales there are final and low and behold everything is working.

I feel I am rather smart and know a little bit about a bunch of stuff but when it comes to computer techie stuff I understand most of the concepts but I just don't know what to do in the practical sense. I also think you should get an actually tech to come to you house and assist you in the installation process, it is probably cheaper in the long run then training a bunch of tech types in India to speak with and American accent.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Hubris or Am I a Donkey?

Why is it that every time I sit down to play poker I expect to leave with more than I came with and can't understand why I can't beat any given game I play? I understand that I have this habit of thinking that if I want it and I feel that I should have it everyone in the world should see it my way and go along with it. It's not that I am selfish, like I am some spoiled rotten kid that wants a new toy in the store it's that I see something that is important to me and I feel I would be perfect for that situation. I have done that with job interviews where I can't possible understand why they should hire anyone else and can't figure out why they went with the other guy. I could deal with this if it gave me the confidence to present myself in the best light but I think most of the time it comes off as arrogance and the interviewer doesn't want and arrogant employee.

I just had a situation at work where my new boss wasn't going to give me an interview for a promotion that I applied for, even though I and most of my co-workers believe I would be perfect for the position. I had to go and plead my case and I guilted him into giving me an interview. I went into it with nothing to lose, considering he didn't want to give me the interview I was behind the eight ball to begin with, I had written it off and this was about saving face and not about the job. I walked out thinking that it was one of the worst interviews I had ever given but I held my own under some serious grilling by the selection committee. Low and behold they did offer the job to someone else and I was told that I was in contention. The job still hasn't been filled because of a salary dispute but my boss seems to have a new founded respect for me in the interim.

What does this have to do with poker? It doesn't exactly have to do with poker but with the fact that poker is a mirror for life. I tend to approach the lower limit tables with the attitude that I can beat the game and that everyone is there to donate to my cause. Just like when I want something in life I have always felt it was mine for the having and get very befuddled when it doesn't happen. I have in my almost 40 years of life been able to get over this type of thinking except when it has come to my poker game. I am definitely better at holding these feelings in check when I am playing live at the casino but when I am alone at my computer in the safety of my home the old feelings come over me. I have an innate sense of people and I think I rely on this when I am playing live and I lose this when I am playing online. I ignore my gut and assume everyone is less skilled then me. When I can't look in there eyes I jump to the wrong conclusions. I have always been someone who uses intuition over cold logic in dealing with people. Online you have to use more logic in studying trends and patterns and I have always be better at feel and intuition.

I think that in order to bring my poker to the next level I have to sit down at a table and assume everyone there is a better or at least an equal player as I am that is until proven otherwise. I also have got to go into games with the I have nothing to lose attitude, not that I have to gamble recklessly, but that as long as I make the right decisions I will win in the long run even if I take some bad beats along the way.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Tilt, Work and Bad Beats....

I could have been on tilt from a situation at work but I actually kept my cool and reason prevailed. I wish I could say the same for my poker game right now. Work has shown me that even if things aren't going the way that I think they are or should go I could still come out looking better and gaining some much needed respect even if that didn't translate to a new position as of yet. My boss seems to be responding to me differently or maybe he took what I had to say in the interview to heart and is changing his tune. Only time will tell.

Just like work I feel as if I am playing better but just staying afloat. I have been looking over my hand histories and I think I am playing correct but just can seem to win any of the races right now. I have been playing low level HORSE and Stud8 (because the bankroll is not where I would like it) and it's just been up and down and I am really not finding the enjoyment in playing that I have been having before. I think like anything I have been to much results focus instead of correct play focused. I also think I have been a bit stressed about the work situation and need a much needed vacation from everything to recharge or maybe I just need to get more sleep. I keep telling my daughter she can sleep in but she's three and the potty is more important at 6am then sleep and for some reason she always wakes me up instead of the wife. Soon as I can get her to make her own pancakes in the morning I will be able to have a couple more minutes of sleep and by the time she is four she should be able to brew mommy and daddy a pot of coffee that is if she really wants to show us how much she loves us.