September 25, 2009

P90X Has Ruined My Life!

What’s up Degens?

Hieroglyphics – Classic
Lil Wayne – Upgrade
Ludacris – MVP

Ok, well I’m on day three of P90X, and I want to die, hahaha. About six weeks ago, I was actually in really good shape. I had been really disciplined about making it to the gym five times a week, and usually put in about an hour each time of either swimming or weight lifting really hard. But after a month of traveling, smoking cigs while shoving alcoholic drinks strong enough to power a car into your body, while also sitting at a poker table/in front of a computer degening, your body starts to fall apart pretty easily. So I’m sure this has all contributed to the magnitude of my soreness more than the actual difficulty of the program, although I will say it’s harder than I expected. I want it to be hard though, because I’d become really sick of my workouts at 24 hour, and a change was certainly needed. I’ve always been in pretty good shape (probably really good compared to the average), but my motivation has been steadily declining since I quit playing competitive sports. I’d like to start playing more racket sports competitively, because I used to love playing Badminton and Tennis in high school, but never really got serious about it. It’d be an awesome way to pass the time for sure.

I haven’t played a ton of poker, but have been doing a ton of coaching the last few days. I’m still catching up on sessions with people who I’ve been putting off for a few weeks since I was traveling so much, so the last few days have been spent coaching three or four hours a day. I really enjoy watching people get better, and I feel like I’m a much better coach than I am a player. It seems like I always bring my A game to coach (probably because someone else is counting on me to do my job, and when I’m playing it’s only me who suffers, which I’m usually ok with), but I’d like to see more of my A game when I’m playing.

I also heard from a student today that I hadn’t spoken to in a long time. He was one of my first students, and is one of the most talented poker players I know. He was really successful at high stakes NLHE, but wanted to learn PLO because he had grown bored of NLHE, and thought the games were drying up as well. He killed it at first, but then moved up in stakes and experienced the nasty side of variance and took a pretty bad bankroll hit. He had to grind it all back playing lower stakes NLHE than he’s used to, but now he wants to start playing PLO again, which is dope! I always like to hear stories about people bouncing back, especially in poker because it’s so easy to give up and doubt yourself, so earning your money back takes a ton of strength.

Other than that, I’ve been working on writing a book/guide for awhile now about moving up in stakes for PLO that I think will really benefit my students and anyone playing PLO, and it’s starting to come together really nicely. Since I self taught myself how to play this silly game, I think I can offer some great insight on how I’d do it the second time around. There’s some great information out there, you just need to customize the most effective way for you to learn it, and to absorb/incorporate it with your learning style so you waste as little time (and money) as possible. I think there’s a lot of people out there who are interested in learning PLO, but want to streamline the process of mastering it, but don’t really know how. So send me a PM or write here if you want more info about all of this.

Oh yes, and also I need a roommate in Vegas beginning in Nov/Dec’ish, so if anyone has some ideas then let me know!

Posted By KasinoKrime at 10:18 PM

25 Comments

September 22, 2009

PLO Musings

What’s Up Degens?

Two days in a row FTW!

From now on, I’m going to try to start the blog off by getting poker stuff out of the way. I’m down a few buy ins since I started playing again, but overall feel like I’m definitely dusting off the rust quickly. The first couple of sessions I had, I made a couple really dumb mistakes, like doing the “fuck it I call” thing when it’s obvious I’m beat even though I have the second nuts, so I suppose I just need to pay more attention to the action and being more disciplined with identifying opponents.

Although there’s several things I feel are essential to being a successful PLO player, I’ll try to name a few and then give myself a grade level up to this point so far on each, and then try to work through where I need to improve the most. They aren’t in any particular order.

1. A significant portion of your winnings must be derived from Non-SD-Winnings. I know this is important in NLHE as well, but I think it’s even more exaggerated in PLO since most of the big pots are classified as “standard”, and you’re mostly just running it. So picking up the small pots is a crucial part of profitably getting it in with less than 50% equity in the bigger pots. One of the biggest leaks I see from my students is not taking down small/medium sized pots when their opponents show weakness. You can develop this skill by simply playing and improving your hand reading skills, and just knowing when your opponents simply can’t “have it”. I feel like I’m very good at this skill right now, and it’s a big piece of crushing the lower stakes. The games just play far too passive, and if you’re not playing aggressively in small pots then you’re missing out on a lot of dead money!
2. Making big folds – This is basically the opposite of #1. You need to get used to comfortably laying down strong hands, and when I say strong, I mean the absolute value of the hand is strong, but against the value range of many opponents, it’s not strong at all. Some opponents just aren’t donking light into 3 people, and some people just never c/r certain boards light, so you need to get used to making big folds. I’ve had problems in the past by making terrible call downs in spots where my opponents just are never betting as a bluff. When I show some of the hands to my friends, they say “oh I always call there”, but I think if you’re a good enough hand reader you should be able to make difficult folds routinely.
3. Not paying attention to table dynamics – With PLO, people really get caught up with oh I play this hand UTG, and I always 3b this hand etc. That’s a poor approach to take. Since there isn’t a ton of equity difference between hands, you need to focus on setting yourself up in a profitable position postflop rather than the actual value of your hand pre flop. For example, a common question I see on the forums is “what hands should I add to my 3b’ing range”, and truthfully I’m not sure it should be asked like that. If you’re not 3b’ing enough, you’re not targeting the correct opponents to do so against. At the lower stakes, people need to focus on isolating a little lighter because so many players incorrectly limp call since they’re so passive. I’ll write more about all of this later.
4. Not quitting when they should – This is another topic that’s really important in NLHE, but really exaggerated in PLO. It’s so easy to make dumb calls or stupid gambles for your 100bb stack when you’re tilted, running bad, or bored. I personally have a stop loss of 3 buy in’s, which seems really low but I’d rather stay on the safe side. There’s nothing worse than grinding up 2-3 buy in wins for a whole week, and then giving it all back with a 10 or 12 buy in losing day. It can be not only a financial bankroll killer, but an emotional/confidence bankroll killer as well. I think I’d be playing 5/10 by now if I had began having a stop loss earlier in my career. The games are always running, and there will always be big fish at your table. Stand up and take a break. Don’t be a degen; be a poker player. It’s all about the long term!

I’ll try to add more to these later. I’d like to write about folding to 3b’s OOP, what hands to call with, what hands to 4b with, opponents to do so against, and other random strategy pieces, but for now I’m a little burnt out on PLO stuff since I just finished a coaching session and am about to start another one in an hour.

I’ve only had a few passions in life, but I’ll name a few here because I think they’re all interrelated, and have a lot in common with poker. Pitching (used to play baseball in college), Golf (several parallels with poker; most Golfers have the perfect mentality for poker imo), women (obv), and music (mostly rap/hip-hop). I’m going to try to write something about each during each entry, but for now I just want to write a few songs I think any hip hop fan should check out.
Jay – Z: It’s Like That
Kanye, Common, Kid Cudi: I Make Her Say
Eminem: Role Model

Those are the songs I’m listening to right now, haha, some old, some new.

Anyway, I’ll try to blog a little more about random shit later after I sesh tonight. Good luck to everyone out there!

JB

On a sidenote, I just received P90x today, so I’m stoked to begin that tonight. I’m sure I’ll have plenty of reviews for it!

So

Posted By KasinoKrime at 10:10 PM

23 Comments

September 21, 2009

I'm Back! Poker, Girls, Europe

What’s up Degens?

Ok, if you don’t feel like reading a long entry, you should probably stop here. I haven’t written in awhile, and a ton has happened to me in the last month or so, and I kind of need to get some thoughts out, so here’s your forewarning. If you haven’t noticed from my other entries, I have a hard time keeping things short, lol.

I’ll start off with poker content, since that’s probably what people read my blog for in the first place. I’ve finally started playing poker again, which feels pretty fantastic tbh. I was so damn hungry to play when I was on my trip, and I think I drove 150mph to Vegas so I could hit the tables. I played my first session last night, and while I ended up losing 2.5 bi’s, I still felt ok about my play, but was definitely rusty. I’ve mostly only been playing live NLHE the past couple of weeks, so online PLO plays quite different. I noticed the biggest thing I was having trouble with was hesitating with my plays, and basically just not trusting my instincts as much as I normally do. I would make up my mind about something, and then suddenly change it. It really is amazing how often your first instinct is the most accurate one. Normally the thought process I use is acknowledging what my first instinct is, and then seeing if I can intelligently put together why I feel that way. imo, this is a good way to progress your poker thought process. Humans experience thoughts/emotions for a reason, so it’s important to always be assessing exactly WHY you’re feeling/thinking that from an objective standpoint.

I’ll post some hands from my session, but to be completely honest, they were all pretty standard, and truthfully there’s none that are even worth discussion. Literally all standard, but I’m going to post them anyway.
http://weaktight.com/1519558
http://weaktight.com/1519559
http://weaktight.com/1519560
http://weaktight.com/1519561
http://weaktight.com/1519564
http://weaktight.com/1519567

It kind of hurts to move back down to 200plo after playing a summer of 400plo, but it’s important to realize that being a professional and managing a roll is all about the long term, and detaching your ego from your roll. I only need to focus on playing good, and to be honest I need to rebuild for awhile before I can handle the swings of 400plo again. I’ll probably grind 20 or 30k hands at 200plo, and then move back up once I start the coaching in a couple of weeks. Plus, since I haven’t played in awhile, it will be good to fine tune my game and get some confidence back. I’m really excited because I finally scheduled my first session with Tom (LearnedFromTV), and will be getting his ebook later this week. I’ll be writing a lot about what I’m learning, and how the impact of the coaching on my play. I’m assuming it will be really fun for me to finally be the student, rather than the coaching, which is something I’m not used to.

So my goals for the session today will be to not play hesitant, and concentrate on just playing good and thinking logically through every decision. I’ve also started watching videos again, and I think this it’s really important to continue learning each day. I’m going to devote an hour each day to watching a video or reviewing hands for sure.

I’m finally back from my random vacations, or “mini-retirements”, lol. The last time I wrote a post, I was sitting in a cafe in Spain, and while I swore to myself I’d be writing a blog post at least every other day when I started this thing, it just hasn’t been realistic the past month or so. Nevertheless, I’m going to do my best to be more committed to writing more often, because I find it really therapeutic, and it makes me feel productive as well.

Europe was really sick. I got to hang out with my friend a lot, party a ton, and get a little cultured in the Spanish lifestyle. For those who are interested in seeing my pictures from Europe/Spain/Vegas/LA the past month, you should just checkout my facebook page, because I’m wayyy to lazy to copy/paste all the images into this blog. Plus the format on facebook makes the images much easier to view, so just do it there. Here’s the link for those interested http://www.facebook.com/john.beauprez?ref=profile

The girls over there were pretty unbelievable, I must say. The last couple of days we were there, we met a couple of guys from Sweden that were telling us about the women up there. I friended him on facebook, and GOOD LORD he wasn’t lying. I’ve heard about Swedish chicks before, but man, I gotta make it up there eventually.

This is kind of off topic, but my friend in Seville and I were having a conversation about the differences between American women and European women, and it became rather obvious why a lot of American women are such bitches, or are really hard to “get”, and also are more superficially oriented, or at a higher “price”, for lack of a better term. I think it all goes back to the law of supply and demand. There’s economics in every aspect of life, and the laws that define the interaction between women and men are no different. No one who’s been to Europe can tell me that there isn’t way more beautiful women in the cities over there in comparison to USA, that’s a fact, but why aren’t they as bitchy or superficial as American women? I personally think it’s because there’s so much more competition for the hot chicks in America because there’s less of them, so they can afford to be bitches, or charge a higher “price” for their love life, whereas in Europe, since there’s like 5 times as many beautiful women, they can’t afford to be bitches because any guy worth a damn will just move on to the next beautiful girl with ease. Does anyone else agree that this is a possibility?

After I got back from Europe, I went to Steamboat Springs for a pig roast my parents were having at their ranch. They’ve got 1350 acres about 30 minutes outside of Steamboat, and every year they invite over 250 people to come drink, eat, and listen to some live music. It was pretty fun, and needless to say there were several awkward moments with relatives who I’m supposed to know the name of, but have no fucking clue who they are, but they know who I am somehow from family pictures etc. Overall it was pretty fun though. If you haven’t been up in the CO mountains, I suggest you try it out. It really IS God’s country up there.

The next day, I went to the CU vs. CSU game. Like any other in state rivalry, it gets pretty rowdy, and it’s always held on labor day weekend, which always happens to fall on my bday, which is also the first game of the year. So it’s usually my favorite weekend of the year, and this time it was no different. We got pretty hammered, but the buffs lost which was kind of a vul but whatever. I’m not sure if anyone follows CU sports, but good lord how is Cody Hawkins our QB? We’re a Big 12 school, we should probably be able to get some pretty significant bad asses to lead our team, rather than some guy who is not only small, but slow, and can’t throw further than 25 yards unless it’s a looper? The guy at the bar next to me last weekend described his arm strength with the following analogy, “a baby T-Rex with a torn biceps tendon could throw it further than him”. Ouch Cody. Haha, I think I have a hateful disposition towards Cody because when my gf and I were on a break, he tried to move in on her… Thankfully she folded, hahahah.

The next day I recovered a little bit, and then mostly just packed up all of my stuff. I left for Vegas a day later, and ended up staying there for five days with 11 other friends. We got hooked up pretty well at Palazzo with three connecting suites which was fun, and we only had to pay $159/night, which I felt was an unbelievable bargain, particularly since there were 4 of us in each room and the rooms are giant. I got to play some cards though, and won a 600bb pot at 2/5, hahaha. Set over set FTW. The overarching theme of the trip for me though was getting completely hammered and still winning at cards somehow. I think I ended up +5800 for the trip, but I’m really not sure on the exact total. A funny sidenote about the trip was how much I lost on my LAST HAND of the night each time I played. In total it ended up being 1750. Here’s how one of the hands went down. I’m 3200 deep at the Venetian 2/5. I limp 33 UTG (btw I’m all racked up, ready to go because it’s my last hand and like 9am, but fuck it, I want to see my last hand since I’m v deep with some players and they’re really really fish). Aggro guy with 2k makes it 30, huge fish with 750 calls in the CO, I obviously call. Flop is 345hh, I check, aggro guy bets 40 into 90, which I felt like is never a strong hand, maybe weak draw or small OP or something, but his range here is just really wide. Most people with overpairs at these games tend to bet big when the board comes short, particularly MW, so I wasn’t scared of him at all, fish calls 40, and obviously his range can be huge as well. Either way, calling would be a sin, so I make it 160, opener calls which was a little confusing, but then the fish shoves for a little over 500 straight. I call of course, and the opener folds. Turn brick, river is a deuce, and the fish turns over A7dd… GG fishy guy. I hate last hands!

Anyway, after the debauchery in LV, I drove to LA to meet up with one of my students and to also stay with a good friend of mine who’s an actress out there. I partied with her the first night, and the next morning she got to do a photoshoot for the album cover of John Mayer’s next album. So congrats to her! She deserves it for sure. The next night I went to Hustler Casino with my student, and we degened a bit at the tables. He’s a LHE player and kills the games out there, but is trying to get some PLO skills going, and he’s improving really fast it seems. In the past, I haven’t enjoyed doing sweat sessions as much as video sweats with students, but lately I’ve had a lot of success with live sweats, so I think I’m going to do that. The problem with live sweats is students have a tendency to just sit there and let me tell them what to do, and it’s hard for me to resist the temptation to just “give them the answers” instead of having good discussion. I’ll have to think about this a little more I suppose.

After LA, I finally reached my current destination in Santa Cruz. Santa Cruz is so sick, I can’t believe it. I live with another poker player in a beach house, which is markedly different than where I’ve lived in the past. I’ve always lived in Colorado, so this time of year is normally bittersweet because I absolutely hate cold weather, but love to snowboard, but generally only get up the mountain a couple times of year. If anyone can give me some recommendations for what to do in Santa Cruz, then hit me up here!Living somewhere warm and near the water will be a good change of pace, and I’m really liking it so far.

I wanted to write about all the stories from everywhere I’ve been, but there’s literally just too much to write. I could literally write a book about it all, but I’d rather just breeze over it a bit. Besides, I doubt anyone gives a shit about my random life happenings, so I’ll try to keep it more poker oriented.

I finally returned from my playing online playing hiatus, and put in 1200 hands yesterday. One of the things I discussed in an earlier blog was about how I wanted to devote myself to getting very good, like I used to. Sometimes I feel like I am trying to hard, or hold myself to unrealistic expectations when I play, and it kind of affects my win rate. For example, if I have anything less than a perfect session (which basically never happens, ever ever ever), I get bummed out. I’m like ok, you coach PLO, write about PLO, have devoted countless hours to this game, and you’re still making obvious mistakes. wtf is wrong with you?

But I don’t think it’s healthy to have such high expectations. The people who know me personally know I went through some fairly dramatic life changes in the past year, and consequently I learned a lot about myself and the causes of many different emotions that humans have. For example, expectations are the biggest reason for dissapointment and negative reactions to anything you do. One of the things you’ll often hear me talk about is relationships and how you can learn about yourself from the experiences you have within them. For me personally, feeling heartbreak is the worst emotion I’ve ever felt in my life, and for a long time I didn’t understand why I was so broken hearted about the things that happened to me. A big part of this was because I felt like the girl was the “one for me”, or that we were going to be together forever. That’s a pretty big deal! If it was just some chick I banged in one nighter, and afterwards she said she never wanted to speak to me again, I would feel pretty indifferent. But since my long term expectations were so high for her and I, I was devastated.

I think this relates to poker a lot. If your expectations are to beat the nosebleeds, and you have a perfectionist characteristics, you’re probably going to feel like a failure more often than not. Speaking of failure, what is “failure” anyway? I read something awhile ago that kind of impacting me. It’s interesting to consider how failure doesn’t actually exist in the natural world. Failure, is something humans made up. You can’t throw failure at your friend. You can’t trip over some failure, or have failure for dinner, and buy some failure. If you remove the idea of failure from your mind, it’s really liberating, and allows you choose your actions using much more logic.

Ack, I wanted to write more, but I have to meet up with a friend for some lunch. I’ll write more later! Hope everyone is doing great.

John

Posted By KasinoKrime at 08:48 PM

12 Comments

August 27, 2009

Europing, Girls, Emotions, Poker

What’s up Degens?

I’m writing this right now at a coffee shop in Sevilla, and couldn’t be more stoked about the Euro trip so far. The first few days were spent getting completely hammered at a couple of really sick clubs in the city, one of which was called Aqua, where the chicks were seriously unbelievable. Feel free to disagree with me, but European women seriously kick the absolute shit out of American women in every department; there’s just no comparison. Look, demeanor, personality, it’s just very hard to deny how much better European women are, but it’s kind of sad as well, since I’m obviously American!

Let me elaborate a little bit. I think the main difference between the quality of women lies mostly in the noticeable difference between an average American girl in comparison to Europeans of the same designation. More clearly, if you were to pick a random girl from America and compare her side by side with a European girl in categories like appearance, intelligence, compassion, and self confidence, I think an average European girl would blow away an American chick in these areas. Now, on the other hand, I think a high quality American woman matches up very well to a high quality American chick, but what I’m arguing is that it’s much harder to find high quality American women than it is to find high quality European women. Just my two cents though, and in all fairness, I’ve only known a handful of European women on a personal level intimate enough to make this kind of judgment, so sample size could definitely be a factor here. Alec Torelli seems to agree with me, so if you’re interested check out his blog as well http://www.cardplayer.com/poker-blogs/35-alec-torelli/entries/6851-life-and-women

Anyway, the partying in the first few days kind of wore me out, and truthfully I’m not a huge club thumping type of guy (unless it’s a really dope club [insert Vegas here]), so I’ve spent the last couple of days doing a little relaxing. My friend and I drove a few hours down to this beach town at the southernmost point in Spain called Tarifa, where we did a little partying and walked on the beaches. Tarifa is definitely one of the coolest cities I’ve ever been to. It reminds me a lot of San Diego, except for the fact that nobody speaks a word of English, and the town only has about 5k people in it. At night you can stand on the beach and very clearly see the city lights on the coast of Africa, which makes you get that eerie feeling like.. Wow… I’m so far away from home right now, lol. Was really incredible though, I don’t think I’ll be forgetting that experience anytime soon.

The next few days are going to be spent doing a little more relaxing, and then next week, a friend and I rented out a beach house in Lagos, Portugal for the week, that should be a blast. His gf and some of her friends are heading down with us, so hopefully I’ll have some sick stories to share with y’all when I get back.

Also, I wanted to chat a bit about poker too. I wrote in an earlier entry about how I was taking some time off, and I think it’ll be really great for me when I return. I’m starting to crave playing a bit, and that’s definitely a good sign. I read a decent amount of a new PLO ebook I bought from LearnedFromTV, and I must say it opened my eyes to some really cool shit I’ve never thought of before. He quantifies a lot of things I already knew, and I can’t wait to start my lessons with him next month after I get back from Vegas.

Even though I haven’t been playing any cards, I’ve been doing a ton of thinking/reading about it. My friend over here used to play a lot back in the day when all of my friends were still playing casually and pipe dreaming about winning the ME (while also playing Bong’s the Button on the weekend, hahaha). Just talking poker with him reminded me how far I’ve come, and gave me some encouragement to make that kind of progress in the next year as well. We also talked a lot about how much emotions suck, and how they can really screw up your goals in poker. What spurred our conversation was a blog I read by Phil Galfond yesterday, which you can check out here. http://www.bluefirepoker.com/post-comment.aspx?postid=1125

I don’t want to go too in depth here, but I love Phil’s take on emotions here. The more I learn about poker, the more I realize I suck. I feel like one of my best qualities as a poker player is being painstakingly objective with myself and my skill level. I think if you’re ever going to make it in this game, you have to constantly be evaluating yourself and what you’re doing to get better. Too many players (myself included) have a few good months beating up on lesser competition and think they’re going to be doing it forever, but let’s face it.. The games are only getting tougher, and to stick around you’re going to need to continue to get better and improve your game if you want to continue to take advantage of the things poker has to offer you. Thinking you’re better than you really are is a huge leak, but sometimes I think that having blind confidence can be a good thing, since being successful at poker is so heavily reliant on playing confidently in the first place. Whether or not your confidence is well founded doesn’t matter; if in actuality you are confident does matter. I have a friend of mine who to be completely honest isn’t a very good player, but he’s been killing it for a few years now, and I think a large portion of that can be attributed to him thinking he’s a very good player, and just letting his instincts take over. He never psyches himself out. He never gets down on himself, and this is all because he thinks he’s so good, and he’s just confident he’ll never have a losing streak because he’s so much better than everyone else (even though he’s not). It’s an interesting dynamic for sure.

My big leak is only focusing on my bad sessions/hands/plays, and not remembering the times I played well and had a good mindset. When things start to go poorly, I tend to think negatively, and as a result, I hesitate in my decision making process and don’t think through hands properly. I think a lot of players are probably guilty of this, and it’s hard to deny those negative thoughts and just say “fuck it, I’m playing with a blank/even leveled mindset today, and really don’t care if I win 20bi’s or lose 20bi’s, I’m just going to play”.

I think when I get home, I’m going to move down and grind out a ton of hands at 200PLO; a level I know I can beat for a good winrate. It will be good for my confidence, and will really get me used to playing well and developing good mental habits.

Ah man, I saw Vanessas post in the forum today, I wish she was doing that series six months ago. If you’re a DC member and are also a 200PLO or 400PLO reg, I would do whatever I can to get in that video. Seriously… Do IT

I read Lefty’s blog (Rollover2k on FTP, super sick PLO player), and he’s pretty into the P90x workout, so I think I’m going to try it out. I’m in good shape right now, but am really bored of my workouts. I’ve gotten pretty strong, but I would like to tone up and do more total body work; P90x sounds like something I could use. Plus, I’m kind of sick of grinding it out with the meatheads at my gym. WTF is wrong with those guys anyway? The funny thing is they’re so ripped, but they probably never get laid lol.

This is getting rambly, but I enjoy rambling, and it’s my blog, so that’s what I’ll do! Haha, GL at the tables to everyone out there. Hopefully I can put an entry in before I go to Lagos.

JB

Posted By KasinoKrime at 11:42 AM

15 Comments

August 18, 2009

Europe!

What’s up Degens?

I’m not sure if I mentioned this in another post, but I’m leaving for Europe on Friday and will be gone for two weeks. My best friend since I was 12 lives in Sevilla, so I’m sure there will be plenty of drunken stories to share with everyone when I get back. I’ll try to post as many pictures as I can, and maybe even do a post when I’m over there.

I broke my commitment to not play poker for a couple weeks yesterday, and of course I got rocked in the face by some pretty shitty beats. That’s what I get for being undisciplined I suppose, but the games were really good and I was sweating a friend of mine who went deep in the FTOPS ME, so I figured since I’m sitting there I may as well be grinding away. So it goes.

Something else that tilts me is the “s” on my keyboard is broken, so I have to practically jam my whole fist into the keyboard to get it to work. Also the outside cover of my CD drive fell off a couple weeks ago, so this piece of shit Vaio is really starting to tilt me. This is my second one, and I like how Best Buy traps you into buying the accidental coverage/warranty plan so you’re stuck with the same crappy laptop for the rest of your life. I kind of got them back last year though, and it’s a funny story so I’ll recap it.

The Vaio I got two years prior to last fall was really starting to piss me off. While helping my gf with her homework one night, I accidentally downloaded a virus onto my computer from LimeWire that totally ruined the whole machine. I took it into Best Buy, thinking they could fix it since I bought the warranty and maintenance plan, but they said it would cost me $250 bucks because they would have to replace some of the hardware or some other random bs. Also, the enter key on that laptop was broken too, so I had to use tab/space for everything!

Since I was fed up with the computer, I took it back to my place in Vegas at the time, and decided it was time to take full advantage of the warranty plan. I backed up all my data, and then dropped it off a two story balcony into the strike zone of my roommate who was waiting in the driveway with a tee ball bat. Needless to say, there was no hope in repairing the laptop, and I got a brand new Vaio of the same selling price of my previous one. I thought I was getting hooked up, but now only a year later this one is starting to fall apart and I’m wishing I just bought a better one that didn’t have so many issues. DON’T BUY A VAIO, SAVE YOURSELF!

Anyway, I’ve got a lot to get done before I leave on Thursday. I have tons of lessons scheduled, and also need to record the new Hellomaha video with n0whereman, so I should probably get to work…. Good luck to everyone in the next couple of weeks!

JB

Posted By KasinoKrime at 03:03 AM

15 Comments

August 13, 2009

Gettin' Handsy

What’s Up Degens?

First off, I don’t think I really covered it in my last post, but I’ll talk about it here. Saturday was a pretty funny day, but something I hope doesn’t happen again any time soon..

I woke up at 11am MST by my roommate who says “Dude, aren’t you going to play the $500+35 PLO FTOPS?”, to which I respond “of course”… The only problem was that I had a lesson scheduled for noon, and I also wanted to at least try to qualify for it, and hadn’t even brushed my teeth yet!

Anyway I cancel my lesson, hop out of bed and immediately fire up FTP. I see there’s tons of qualifiers running, but unfortunately since it’s so close to tournament time, they’re all super turbos. If you don’t know what this structure is like, let me give you a little refresher. You start with 100 chips with blinds at 15/30… So it’s basically just a variance fest, which PLO generally is anyway.

To make a long story short, I join a ton of them, thinking even if I win more than once I can just use the money or whatever. Unfortunately I bubble three of them, and end up spending $1600 in tournament qualifiers for a tournament I didn’t even win an entry to! Now I’m on massive tilt, and am unsure if I even want to buy in now. I end up just direct buying (yay for $2100 on a $535 tourney), and proceed to get probably the worst table draw in the whole tournament. Bussa Buss is on my left, Gboro is on my right, and another solid 10/20 reg is two to my left as well. Sweeeeet. To make a long story short, I felt I played very well, but busted a few levels in as a favorite against the nuts http://weaktight.com/1371653

This might seem kind of ranty, but I’m going to use this time to basically talk about my undying hate for tournaments. Anyone who knows me personally will be familiar with my take on the intrinsic fishiness it takes to win tournaments, so fast forward if you’ve heard this out of my mouth before. They seriously take a small fraction of skill to be a winner in comparison to cash games. Look at some of the people who have won giant live tourneys. Jerry Yang, are you serious? Darvin Moon is the chip leader of the ME? I can’t remember the last time I played a tournament and wasn’t completely dissappointed when it was finished.

Anyway, I mentioned in my inaugural post that I was on a bit of a downer, so I figured now was the perfect time to go through my database in the last month or so and analyze my biggest losers and see if I’m really losing hand reading skills, or if I’m just running into a rough patch of variance. I think I’ve found it’s a little of both. I have what I’ve dubbed “cocky spewey” syndrome, which usually kicks in after I’m an hour or so into my session and already up a couple of buy ins. One of my biggest strengths is using my aggression effectively, but it definitely works against me as well. Something I need to work on is realizing that the rest of the table is beginning to adjust to how aggressive I’ve been playing against them, so I should expect them to start calling me down lighter. I kind of forget to implement this concept, and get looked up very light towards the end of the session, which just makes me want to get it back right away which in turn induces some “cocky spewey syndrome”. Anyway, here’s some hands I’ve played lately, maybe you can decide how much I suck.

This guy is one of the most aggressive players I’ve ever played HU. He 3b every hand, and was just generally kind of tricky to play. 4b PF is standard against someone like this, but is there any other way to play the flop? I wonder if I can c-bet smaller to induce a c/r with worse draws, or if betting full pot is super standard because it’s a 4b pot and I just want to get the money in? I’m assuming the latter, but maybe I could see a spot for doing the former.

Party Poker $400.00 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 2 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

BB: $787.45
Hero (BTN/SB): $1403.00

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is BTN/SB with K Heart K Spade Q Spade 7 Diamond
Hero raises to $12, BB raises to $36, Hero raises to $108, BB calls $72

Flop: ($216.00) 9 Spade 7 Heart 2 Spade (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets $216.00, BB raises to $679.45, Hero calls $463.45

Final Pot: $1574.90
BB wins $1574.40
(Rake: $0.50)

I’m pretty embarrassed about this hand to be completely honest. He was super passive, playing a 60/5, and the iso PF is very standard. Post flop is where I really messed up. First of all, a player this passive would never ever donk on a flop like this without anything but a set imo. Sure once in awhile he’ll do it with massive draws, but having the As in my hand makes this less likely, and from my experience players who are this passive will c/c basically all draws, rather than donking out in situations like this. I understand what I was thinking at the time though. I thought there was a decent chance he has a set, but I had a T and J in my hand, so I decided to see a clean turn and just close my eyes and ship it if he bet pot on the turn. Looking back though, if I would have thought it out, it would’ve been an easy fold. I’m either destroyed, or a slight favorite there. *Note to self, when passive players donk pot, fold, lol. obv. Part of being a good PLO player is getting used to making folds like this routine. He’s just never bluffing there. I hate this hand!

Party Poker $400.00 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 6 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

Hero (MP): $486.05
CO: $626.80
BTN: $1258.40
SB: $527.00
BB: $55.80
UTG: $1697.65

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is MP with K Diamond A Spade T Heart J Heart
UTG calls $4, Hero raises to $18, 4 folds, UTG calls $14

Flop: ($42.00) 2 Club J Spade T Spade (2 players)
UTG bets $42.00, Hero calls $42

Turn: ($126.00) 5 Heart (2 players)
UTG bets $126.00, Hero raises to $426.05, UTG calls $300.05

Final Pot: $978.10
UTG wins $975.10
(Rake: $3.00)

This one is pretty basic, but I want to go over it. I had a problem earlier this summer with bluffing fish, and the problem here was I didn’t know who he was. I hadn’t been at the table very long, and the only read I had was that he was from Estonia (wtf is that?). I actually really like my line, and I think it works a ton, but if I would’ve known then what I figured out later in the session I never would have tried it. He ended up being a monster fish. Don’t naked ace bluff fish!! I definitely like my line though.

Party Poker $400.00 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 5 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

Hero (BB): $644.70
UTG: $135.10
CO: $846.40
BTN: $1555.60
SB: $211.55

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is BB with 9 Diamond A Spade A Club 8 Heart
1 fold, CO raises to $12, BTN calls $12, 1 fold, Hero calls $8

Flop: ($38.00) J Club 5 Club 4 Club (3 players)
Hero checks, CO bets $19.00, BTN folds, Hero raises to $48, CO calls $29

Turn: ($134.00) Q Club (2 players)
Hero bets $101.00, CO calls $101

River: ($336.00) 6 Spade (2 players)
Hero bets $321.00, CO calls $321

Final Pot: $978.00
CO wins $975.00
(Rake: $3.00)

Standard.

Party Poker $400.00 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 5 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

UTG: $440.40
CO: $470.10
Hero (BTN): $493.50
SB: $378.00
BB: $72.50

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is BTN with K Spade T Spade 6 Diamond K Heart
1 fold, CO raises to $14, Hero calls $14, 1 fold, BB calls $10

Flop: ($44.00) 4 Club K Club Q Spade (3 players)
BB checks, CO bets $36.00, Hero raises to $148, BB folds, CO raises to $456.10, Hero calls $308.10

Final Pot: $956.20
CO wins $953.20
(Rake: $3.00)

I like my turn c/r here (65% equity), but beyond being a favorite, I think they fold here tons. I don’t like my bet sizing on the flop though, should definitely be 9 or 10.

Party Poker $400.00 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 5 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

BB: $271.00
UTG: $770.90
CO: $382.00
BTN: $400.00
Hero (SB): $400.00

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is SB with K Diamond J Club 3 Club 9 Diamond
1 fold, CO calls $4, 1 fold, Hero calls $2, BB checks

Flop: ($12.00) Q Club 8 Spade 2 Club (3 players)
Hero bets $7.00, BB calls $7, CO calls $7

Turn: ($33.00) K Heart (3 players)
Hero checks, BB bets $16.00, CO calls $16, Hero raises to $97, BB folds, CO calls $81

River: ($243.00) 7 Club (2 players)
Hero bets $243.00, CO raises to $274, Hero calls $31

Final Pot: $791.00
CO wins $788.00
(Rake: $3.00)

This hand seems pretty standard, but I wonder if I can ever find a fold here. On the turn, I felt like Marty is leading half pot with draws almost always. I’ve found that most people bet closer to pot when they have strong hands on wet boards (correctly so), so this just looks super fishy when he bets that amount. The reason I raised was to rep QT to the player behind me so he didn’t come along with draws as often, and to charge marty for his draws as well. I was a little confused by the call from the player behind me, but figured it was never QT because the stacks were such that he would likely just stick in QT so he wouldn’t make a mistake on the river. I guess since I repped QT, he must’ve thought I in fact did have QT, so he didn’t want to be getting freerolled. wp I guess? River is standard; there’s no value in betting, but he can try to bluff me with missed draws (which I felt was the majority of his range at this point).

Party Poker $400.00 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 4 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

SB: $309.10
BB: $761.30
Hero (CO): $430.40
BTN: $356.40

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is CO with K Spade 9 Heart T Diamond 7 Heart
Hero raises to $14, BTN calls $14, SB calls $12, BB calls $10

Flop: ($56.00) A Club J Heart 8 Club (4 players)
SB checks, BB checks, Hero checks, BTN checks

Turn: ($56.00) 9 Spade (4 players)
SB bets $28.00, BB folds, Hero raises to $68, BTN calls $68, SB folds

River: ($220.00) 2 Diamond (2 players)
Hero checks, BTN bets $220.00, Hero calls $220

Final Pot: $660.00
BTN wins $658.00
(Rake: $2.00)

I’ll post more hands tomorrow, but I just wanted to get some out there for now. I’ll save the best for last…

Party Poker $400.00 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 4 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

CO: $222.50
Hero (BTN): $450.50
SB: $120.00
BB: $394.00

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is BTN with 9 Diamond 9 Club A Club A Diamond
CO raises to $14, Hero raises to $48, 2 folds, CO raises to $150, Hero raises to $450.50, CO calls $72.50 all in

Final Pot: $451.00
CO wins $449.00
(Rake: $2.00)

Ok it doesn’t show his hand, but he had KKKQr… wp sir.

Hope everyone is having a great week, I’ll try to post more tomorrow! Taking a day off from poker has been great, and I probably won’t play again for at least another week, although my IronMan Status is getting crushed!

Much Love,

JB

PS – I don’t know why, but the converter isn’t showing my opponent’s hands in the results? If you want to know what they had just message me or something, lol.

Posted By KasinoKrime at 10:18 PM

14 Comments

August 12, 2009

First Postin'

What’s up guys?

I’ve been planning on starting this blog for a long time now, but was finally able to get around to it today. Earlier in the year I was blogging on BlueFirePoker, but ended up only blogging about a half dozen times before I got bored and quit writing entires of any value. I normally log my thoughts in a personal journal everyday, but I’d like to keep this blog as poker oriented as possible, which will be practically impossible given that I play, coach, and write about poker for a living. Plus, poker intrinsically parallels many life situations and topics, so using poker related analogies is a really useful mechanism for describing what happens at the table, as well as beyond it.

I just finished reading my first blog post on BFP, and wow did it suck! No wonder nobody ever read my blog, lol. I seem to remember myself planning out everything I was going to say, so this time I’ll just aimlessly ramble and see where it gets me.

I think I’ll eventually get to my poker history/bio in another blog post, but for now I think it’s best to focus on what’s been going on with me poker-wise in the last year or so. In the midst of a “early 20’s I just graduated now WTF am I going to do with the rest of my life” crisis, I moved out to Vegas last September to live it up for a few months and grind some live cash to build a roll. Up to that point, I had only played live cash in casinos and home games, but never really online. Online I only played stt’s, but didn’t have good enough bankroll management to play cash, and plus I was scared that the internet people could have “stats” on me, and know what I had all the time, lol.

Going out to Vegas for a few months ended up being the best decision I ever made. I had a great time, made some money, and was able to clear my head and figure out what I wanted to do in life, which is kind of odd because I think most people who go to Vegas that long either become more confused about their situation, or never want to leave due to all the immediate gratification that Vegas has to offer. While I was out there, I got accepted to the graduate business school I wanted, so I had to move back to Colorado to start school in January.

One of the best things that happened to me while I was out in Vegas was learning how soft the PLO games online were. I was telling him how I was bitter about leaving Vegas because the games in Colorado weren’t nearly as good there, and he asked me why I didn’t want to play online. I told him I sucked at NLHE online, and that I didn’t think I was a favorite in the games. He described to me how easy the PLO games were online, and let me sit in on a few sessions with him to learn the ropes, which ended up being an amazing investment for me.

When I got home, I made up my mind that I was going to devote as much time as I could to learning PLO. I watched every video on DC and CR, took really detailed notes, and gradually improved my game and moved up in the stakes. Everything was going smoothly until I hit my first downswing (22bi’s), which ended up hurting both my financial bankroll and my confidence bankroll as well. I decided to take six weeks off, and figure out what I really wanted to get out of poker.

I returned with newfound enthusiasm, and found that the time off had really worked in my favor. Playing sessions without the weight of the previous nights bad beats on my shoulder felt awesome, and I felt like I was playing at the top of my game for many weeks in a row. In addition, I decided to sharpen my knowledge about overall poker theory, so I got some lessons from my good friend Kai (ISPEWCHIPS on FTP) to solidify the holes in my NLHE game in hopes that it would transfer over to my PLO game.

In between all of this, I was fortunate enough to land an opportunity to be a SSPLO coach for DeucesCracked in June; it’s been an amazing experience so far. I’ve coached more than 25 people in the last ten weeks, and have enjoyed every minute of it. I’ve forged relationships with people across the world that I otherwise wouldn’t have met, and actually get paid to teach people about poker, which is amazing! I definitely don’t take for granted what the people at DC have done for me so far, and seeing my students improve is one of the best accomplishments I’ve had in my life. It’s great!

Anyway, back to actually playing cards. Earlier in the summer, I was hitting a wall with PLO. I felt like I was playing well, but wasn’t really advancing my game as much as I thought I could. Maybe I had absorbed all the information the videos had to teach? Or maybe I had just reached my playing capacity, and was stuck grinding the stakes I was at forever…

I knew this wasn’t true, so I began searching for some coaching. I shopped around for a long time, and settled on Tom Chambers (LearnedFromTV on 2p2, LeggoPoker coach, www.plotheory.com), and decided to buy a coaching package from him. I originally was going to get a DC coach, but ended up deciding on Tom because of his soon to be released ebook, and the discounted price you receive if you purchase the book along with the coaching. I’ve never had a PLO coach before, so I’m really excited to see where it takes my game. Our lessons begin next month, so stay tuned to see how that goes.

Lately PLO hasn’t been going as good as I would like. Variance has definitely not been on my side, but I’ve been running into some trouble playing longer sessions than I’m used to. Each session seems to be the same. I start off up 3bi’s or so, and then end up getting unlucky, or “cocky/spewey” syndrome towards the end. It’s kind of frustrating, because I’m not encountering another downswing like I experienced earlier in the year. So today I decided to go through my database, and look at some of the hands I’ve lost in the last couple of weeks to see if I notice any patterns, or if I’m just stacking off like a monkey.

I was going to post a bunch of hands and go through them, but there’s a lot and this blog is already long enough, so I’ll just call it quits for now. I’ll do it tonight or later tomorrow.

NH!

Posted By KasinoKrime at 11:43 PM

18 Comments


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