July 10, 2012
We'll milk this Rudyard Kipling poem for one more blog post. So I went down to my poker club and played about 6 hours and finished up about $1300. Good day. Started at 1/2 for the first couple of hours and moved up to 2/5 where they respect my raises. Ha, just kidding. No they don't. But I do seem to do much better at 2/5 than 1/2 for some reason. I'm guessing that reason is variance but it could certainly have to do with the higher stakes making me a little more nervous thus making me avoid some marginal situations that I don't really know how to handle.
So $1300 up, what's to bitch about? Well I kinda played like a chickenshit after tripling up early in 2/5 when my set held up against an over pair and a combo draw. In my game due to weird state laws we only buy in 100 bbs deep or less and have to sell our chips and start over every two hours. So in general I never get that deep with anyone. One dude is a good but not great player but certainly isn't afraid to gamble and put pressure on people who value money. First hand against him is kind of a non-hand. I have queens in the SB, he raises to 25 from the HJ and I just flat because I know he pretty much never folds to 3 bets and I don't particularly want to play a huge hand against this guy OOP. Anyways, flop comes A77 with a flush draw. Checks thru, I check/call the turn and fold the river after two blanks come off. I almost certainly still lose this pot if I 3 bet, but at least it wouldn't have left me feeling dirty.
He works his stack up around $1000 while I'm sitting on 1500 and we have ourselves a 7 way limped straddled pot. I have 8T on the button and the flop comes T87 2 diamonds. Big blind who only has like 250 leads out for 60 and the straddler who has about 600 and the whale call. If I were properly bankrolled I would have no problem raising here, probably to around 250 to put the bb in and fold to anyone else if they decide to jam. Unfortunately, I'm too poor to really have any business playing 2/5 but I do it anyways because most of the rest of the table is too stupid to have any business playing 2/5. So I call and wait for a "safe" turn. Turn is safe-ish. Offsuit ace. Blind predictably shoves, straddler tank folds and the whale doesn't take too much time in calling. Now, normally I think fast call = draw, but I also know this guy loves to play his draws hard and slow plays his nutted hands. I also know he has $600 left and about half the deck is a scare card on the river and for some reason this scares me because I know I can't call a river bet on a lot of cards and I feel like he's aggressive enough to make a bluff here while still being stupid enough to bluff me off in order to have to show down against a fairly predictable guy who's shown nothing but strength. So I narrowed my options down to jam or fold. I'm not sure I'm ahead of anyone at this point, although I was putting the bb more on a draw or combo draw because he plays those pretty hard. He was the guy I stacked earlier who had the combo draw. But of course he could have me beat, the whale could fold and I find myself having risked my stack in order to try to hit a 4 outer. So. I dunno. I tank. Someone calls time. I fold. BB had 78 for bottom two and the whale had A9 for top pair and an open ender. 78 holds and I hate myself for not having some cojones. I should punish myself by making myself play 1/2 until I have a bankroll to handle some variance. But I won't because my wussy scared money win rate at 2/5 is still better than my playing right win rate at 1/2. This could have something to do with my flawed idea of what playing right entails. Oh well. So much for proper bankroll management.