September 03, 2010

ECQ: England 4 - 0 Bulgaria

One might say "Where was that during the World Cup?" if one was being hyprocritcal.  aside from Walcott and johnson, every member of that team was on the plane to the World Cup and you ask how can a team that was so dismal in the World Cup improve so much.  Still here's my thoughts

Joe Hart: Showing week after week what a calamity it was he wasn't England's first choice in South Africa.  This lad has it all, he's brash, confident, athletic, commands his area.  He's got every tool there is to be one of the great English Goalkeepers.  

Glen Johson:  Still shaky at the back and gives away rash fouls but you can't deny how potnet of a weapon he is going forward, needs cover though

Phil Jagielka: Solid Enough, Never really under that much pressure

Michael Dawson:  Horror Injury in the 2nd half and that looks like a potential ACL which would be tragic but by the way they were handling him, that's a serious injury.  Does look error prone but I imagine will improve, hopefully this injury doesn't scupper him for too long but knee injuries are not good, he could be done for most of the season if it's bad.

Ashley Cole: Started brightly contributing to the first goal and had good linkup with Milner but overall a little quiet

James Milner: Fiine but didn't really get that much into the game.  Delivery wasn't of his usual high standard either

Stephen Gerrard: Nothing wrong at all, good busy display.  Looked sharp and focused early and led by example and the rest of the team followed suit.

Gareth Barry:  I still don't think he's good enough to be in an England Shirt, I think Carrick and Hargreaves and maybe even Rodwell are better options but for now he's got the shirt and he was solid enough.

Theo Walcott: Again another "Why wasn't he on the plane?" Question.  He looked menacing in the first half, had their left back all over the place.  2nd half he petered out a bit and Adam Johnson replaced him.

Wayne Rooney: Much better performance with him playing in that "Hole behind the striker" role where he's devastating becasue he's so hard to pick up.  Was involved in all 4 goals if I recall correctly and laid 2 of them on a plate for Defoe.  Only thing missing was a goal but that will come.  Delightful chip attempt.

Jermaine Defoe:  Not everyone's first choice but he's a natural goalscorer and bagging a hat-trick tonight will do his confidence the world of good, his 2nd and 3rd goals both with his left (weaker) foot were clinical.  Looked like he picked up a knock near the end, hope it's not too serious.

Gary Cahill:  Came on for Dawson, looked ok, got out of position one but Hart bailed him out.  Almost got on the end of an evil gerrard free kick

Adam Johnson:  The biggest mystery of South africa to me.  Why he wasn't there was a travesty.  Got on the scoresheet and I think he's a top player who will grow.  Naturally left footed as well, always a great weapon.

Overall Verdict:

Pretty good.  The 4-4-1-1 formation worked nicely, the players looked sharp and focused.  Bulgaria looked tidy but only really had 1 golden chance and England were absolutely clinical.  So looks like a good way to start the campaign.  Switzerland away next though, very tough game.

Posted By Boomer at 09:05 PM


August 21, 2010

Les Miserables? Not Me

Thursday Night I went to the Lowry Theatre in Salford Quays to see Les Miserables which is currently on it's 25 Anniversary Tour.

Here's a Link to some information about where i was, in fact the picture at the middle in the bottom was very close to my actual seat giving you some idea of what my view was, excellent.

I've never actually been to Salford Quays before and I was delighted to find a Chiqito's there!! Finally I could have Mexican after the show...pity it shut 30 muntes after the show was due to finish and I'd have to get out of the multi-story car park first...BUGGER!!

Anyway got there in plenty of time and had a look round.  Sadly there wasn't much for sale except some rather tacky T-Shirts probably not in my size, CD's and DVDs I already had and marked up food so I decided to read my program and learn a little about the performers.

Got talking to a couple next to me, apparently she'd seen it 6 times live already, I had to confess I was only really familiar with the 10th Anniversary Performance from the Royal Albert Hall which was done on Static Microphones with acting occuring in the background and on big screens.

First thing I'll say, for the one person I know is interested, yup it was fully acted and no static microphones were used.  Odd they decided to do it that way for the 10th Anniversary and another thing they did was miss a couple of parts from the storyline from the 10th Anniversary which were shown here:

1) Fantine's original decision to become a whore elongated and her falling ill becasue of it

2) Eponine being seen as Thenadier's daughter with Cosette as children

3) Valjean finding Cosette in the woods getting water

4) The first Thenardier attack on Valjean which is thwarted by Javert with Valjean and Cosette fleeing and Thenardier getting away due to their being no "victim" of his crime around and Javert now suspicious that Valjean is nearby.  This is also where Adult Eponine is first introduced and Cosette and Marius first meet.  The scene ends with Marius asking Eponine to find Cosette.

5) Mentioning Valjean has a brand from his days as a slave which is how Javert can identify him.

6) Valjean confessing his past to Marius and swearing him to secrecy as he belives it would break Cosette's heart to know the truth about him

7) Eponine delivering Valjean a letter to Cosette from Marius which lets Valjean in on the fact Marius and Cosette are in love.  Eponine is killed returning to the barricade and dies in a distraught Marius's arms.

8) Gavrosh's brutal murder by the French Army.  This actually seemed to genuinly disturb some of the audience because the Gavrosh character is well liked and he was shot and died in agony behind the baricade so the audience couldn't see it, only hear it.

9) Elongated version of Thenardier and Valjean in the sewers after the battle.

10) Thenardier approaching Marius at his wedding to Cosette.  Thenardier gives him a ring which Marius instantly recognisies as his own and pieces together that Valjean saved his life.

So actually found it interesting to watch again as it was something new in it both being acted and the parts I hadn't yet seen.  Yes I can recite the words to the main songs off the top of my head without thinking but seeing it live was so much better.

So what did I think of the overall performance:

John Owen-Jones - Valjean:  Very very good.  Valjean seems like such a hard character to play.  You have to have the power to go toe-to-toe with Javert in the confrontational duos but you have to also have a range which I belive should only be reachable in italian trousers for "Bring Him Home" and he handled it brilliantly and with his acting, especailly in the beginning, was able to display the mental anguish valjean struggled with for the vast majority of his life.

Earl Carpenter - Javert: Good.  I don't think he was as strong as Valjean, Javert often isn't in performances becasue the character is fairly 1 dimensional, and that inflexibility being what, in the end, destroys him.  However his rendition of Stars was excellent and the way they stage performed his eventual suicide was incredible.  He definitely had a menacing stage presence in that you knew he was the antagonist but also recognised him as a black/white person in a sea of shades of grey.

Laura Tebbutt - Fantine: Excellent.  Understudy called in but did a fantastic job.  With "I Dreamed a Dream" now being, thanks to Susan Boyle, a Nationally well known song in the UK she would have been held to high standards and given the audiences whooping applause she got it right.  Played the tragic heroine to perfection.  An interesting contrast to Ruthie Henshaw from the 10th Anniversary who was much more powerful in delivery.  Sobbing heard during "Come to Me"

Rosalind James - Eponine: Very Good.  Played the character well.  Obviously all Eponine's are really judged on how they sing "On My Own".  I think that she struggled a bit with the "PRE-TEND-IIIIING" bit as her voice seemed to break a bit but I may have been imagining it.  Then again I'm used to the Lea Salonga version..Youtube It!!  Excellent rendition though and I definitely heard crying during "A Little Fall of Rain".

Max Griesbach and Lynne Wilmot - Thenardiers: Fantastic.  Got a fantastic crowd reaction and interaction well.  Mannerisms perfect. "Master of the House" and "Beggar At The Feast" both got very good reactions and were performed excellently.  Griesbach especailly has Thernardier down perfectly.  Funny in parts but you knew he was a scuzzball who'd sell his adopted daughter for 1500 francs....wait he did?? Bastard!!

Luke Kemper - Marius - Understudy to Gareth Gates and was exceptional.  Again Marius is often judged by "Empty Chairs and Empty Tables" and given voice-wise he up vs Michael Ball for the version I know that's a slight problem but his rendition was excellent and he had very good on stage chemistry.

Jon Robyns - Enjolras - For me he stole the show.  Absolutely incredbile performance.  Enjorlas sadly doesn't really have any individual songs but "Red and Black" and "Do You Hear the People Sing" are associated with him and his work was almost perfect.  From the determination of the plan, to the despair of realising Paris will not rise up in support (another bit i hadn't seen before) to his final "Let Us Die Facing Our Foes....Let Others Rise" act of defiance.

The 25th Anniversay comes to a head on 2nd of October in London's O2 arena which I imagine will be an amazing evening, if you have a spare £150 for tickets and the same again for travelling ($500 is a lot for 1 night) but to be honest if I had it I'd do it again.  But for the £40 I did spend I couldn't have asked anymore.  Fantastic performance, incredibly enjoyable and it was even fun discussing the performace half way through with the couple I'd met.

Overall thoroughly fantastic.  I'm going to have to go more often...just earlier so i can get some Mexican in..

Take Care Guys


Posted By Boomer at 08:52 PM


August 14, 2010


I made a small tweet the other day with basically just put out the fact that at the moment I'm feeling really disappointed in the way things are going.

Probably some minor form of life tilt but generally I try and set high standards for myself and in 2010 the only constant really has been failing to meet them which is why I'm kicking myself a little at the moment.

Bascailly given how well 2009 went, not just from poker but the fact I actually managed to, y'know, keep my job when over 20% of the company got a pat on the back and a kick in the pants out the door, and I felt a genuine feeling of growth.

This year has just been stop/start awful and I just feel like I've been going backwards if anything. 

First poker-wise it's been quite a comedown to go from a 3/6 killer to someone who is basically relying on rakeback at 1/2 recently.  Embarrassing more than anything else and yes I've run like crap and it's a small sample etc and I shouldn't be worried but I'm feeling a symptom of a bit of a larger problem.

Bascailly for anyone I've spoken to they'll know that the last 7-8 years of my life have basically been fighting a battle and it's one we're actually close to winning.  However it's also been mentally and physically draining and I honestly belive that if we don't win it this year we're never going to.

We're both sick to the back teeth of fighting and, bascailly, getting almost no help whatsoever.  We're tired of laying out plans that would seem to work only for someone to give us a totally BS excuse why they can't help.  We're both tired of politicing and downright backhandidness that we have to endure every day and we're sick of the fact every time we stick our head above the parapet someone feels the need to take a shot at us.

As you can probably tell we're both suffering from stress and it shows by the fact that when we go for a walk at night it's usually to air greivances and we have to go for a 2-3 mile walk every day.  To be honest I think it's affecting my mom worse than it's affecting me as she blames herself for all this happening.

The one bright spark this year was my trip to the US and I came back to the UK with a new sense of vigour etc and it took all of about 2 weeks to get buried again.


Self-pity doesn't get anyone anywhere so it's time to put my head above the parapet one more time and this time I'm gonna find who's shooting at me and order a paradrop!!

There are good things happening. 

Our new garden is awesome and we actually got the first new plum tomatoes recently (Bigger than a Grade 1 Egg).  One of the tomato plants actually snapped under it's own wieght of tomatoes there are that may, it's been repared ingeniously with a cane and I think an old pair of tights.

The new Premiership season starts today!! Man-Cave at the ready!!  Projector? Check!! 5.1 Surround? Check! Sky HD? Check! Fridge full of drink and Freezer full of Ice Cubes? Hmm partially check, will need to fix that.  Awesome imo.

My little bad run at the tables will end....and when it does there's hell to pay.  I haven't put as much effort into improving as I have to give up now.  Last year I went through a 350BB downswing and came out the other side with a 1500BB upswing without even taking bonuses and RB into account.  Form's temporary, class is permanent.

Speaking of Class the new DC LHE Coaches...holy shit I think DC just hit the mosquito of disappointment with a 15lb lump hammer.  Way to go guys!!

I have Starcraft, Brood War and Starcraft II.  'Nuff Said.

Maybe something else good coming on the horizon...we'll see.

Sorry about the rant there fellas.  I'll be ok.  Time heals all wounds...eventually.

Posted By Boomer at 10:33 AM


August 08, 2010


Sorry guys I was supposed to record a vid this weekend but my attempts were foiled by

A) My PC

and then

B) 45 minutes of just taking incredble beats and shipping almost 50BB in about 150 hands so wouldn't really have been much use to anyone except those who wanted to see a train wreck.  How embarrassing.  I used to be quite good iirc.

I think I'm going to take bellatrix's advice for at least 1 video and do a post-session review rather than live just to get more jabber in.  Of course this will limit it to about 5 hands but hey.

We'll see if things go better next week


Posted By Boomer at 05:57 PM


Tags: RTR

August 07, 2010


Pictures don't need words...

User Uploaded Image

 Yes yes I know 0.5/1 but Party Poker sent me a free $20 as they do occasionally and I decided to 20BB bankroll challenge it for a little while.  I must admit it was nice being back in 2005.

I do intend to do a video tonight.  Hopefully will get to record it and post it so it's up this evening US time.  Wish me luck :)

Posted By Boomer at 04:38 PM


Tags: RTR

August 02, 2010


Thanks for all the well wishes guys on me becoming an old man...well 28 but still...GET OFF MY LAWN!!

Sadly for my grinding one of my birthday presents was Starcraft 2....but to prove how much I like you guys I'm going to record a vid tomorrow and post it.

I'm currently about 100BB off a 2/4 shot so hopefully with a bit of luck I'll be able to do that soon.  Definitely want back on the grind now.  Took a  lot of time off due to the events on the forum and my birthday etc so now it's back to it.  Might even try and get some Iron Man levels...steady now Boomer.

Oh new project may start in October...the BoomerGym.  More info to be posted if and when project gets started.

Take Care Guys


Posted By Boomer at 07:46 PM


July 25, 2010

Thanks Fnupple and Sweetjazz!!

The last few days tbh have been pretty miserable as a whole but Sweetjazz came up with the idea of getting back on track with strategy stuff and fnupple delivered imo with his now patented "Fnupple Strat Bomb" which hopefully will get the forum going again.  Which gave me an idea for an MSPaint since I haven't done one in a while so this is for fnupp and SJ and thanks guys for cheering me up a bit this weekend:

User Uploaded Image


User Uploaded Image


User Uploaded Image

Thanks guys, hopefully we can get stuff back on track. 

Best to everyone

Regards, Boomer

Posted By Boomer at 11:16 AM


July 24, 2010

Road to Robusto Continues...

...very slowly.

I took a few days off at the beginning of last week.  I was wound up to the hilt and I think if I'd have kept going I would have had to answer some very difficult questions like "Why does this person no longer have a head and there's a strange smell coming from the deep fat frier, do you know anything?"

I was hoping to get back to some level of sanity but obviously based on recent events that's not happening soon.  I've witheld making any comment because to be honest all I feel about it is upset more than anything so I really don't want to delve any further at this time.

I am going to continue the RTR series for the moment, I'll keep churning out 1 vid a week.  I got some decent feedback, on Skype at least, on my first vid so I might as well keep it going despite the fact it took me 24 hours to produce the last one becasue I was so immensely unsatisfied with how it was being produced and in the end I gave up and downloaded Camtasia 7.  That's gonna cost me if I don't ahve a good August :)

I'll record either tonight or tomorrow and then produce a little after that.  I know all the settings I need to use now so it's no biggie.  I'm not going to be around as much for a little while.  I think I just want to get back to the grind and hopefully things will begin to settle down but given my recent record on "Things settling Down" it may be more than a little while.

Take Care Guys


Posted By Boomer at 12:15 PM


Tags: RTR

July 19, 2010

RTR Vid 1 - 1/2Fl 6-max

Well it took me a while but I've finally managed to encode the first vid on my RTR and it's now being uploaded in the member vids section

It's in mp4 format but I doubt you guys will have much trouble with that.  Thanks in advance if you choose to watch.

Hope you guys enjoy and I'm using my blog to post my comments because I don't want to influence anyone's opinioin BEFORE they watch it:

04:00 - QJs - This is probably unneccessary and should be folded but in the moment wierd line and wierd looking opponent.

06:30 - Q8o - Probably a raise pre

09:00 - QTs - Really interested so see guy's river lines here

10:30 - QQ - Didn't articulate myself well here.  Vs this guy I'm pretty sure this is a very simple B/F on every street once the turn hits.

13:45 - 87o - Not sure I like the lead out.

14:00 - T8o - Pretty sure this hand's a trainwreck at some point.  I think the flop's debateable I think folding's wrong but maybe raising's better.  I think the river bet is asinine.

19:30 - AK - I'm pretty sure this is a very straightforward river fold, especially given the previous hand, even getting 13-1 here I think this is a fold.

20:45 - KQs - I think I need to fight back on this board.  I think if I had a BDFD I'd have B3B the flop although whether that's relevant enough not sure.  Additionally maybe showing down could be correct since I beat all the busted straight draws and gutters except for KQ which I chop with a Ax gutters which I doubt bet the river.

29:30 - 88 - This is a lazy lazy peel and the only excuse I have is I was writing a note.  This should be a very simple raise.

34:30 - 77 - Close but I think value bet mainly becasue we're pretty much never getting raised and we know the check to mean weakness.

Lemme know what you think guys

Thanks, Boomer

Posted By Boomer at 05:14 PM


Tags: RTR

July 17, 2010


I'm going to do some research today on 6-max play.  I think I've been pussing out a ton recently, probably because I'm on a 200BB+ Downswing but I've got to be careful not to fix what isn't broken if it isn't.

The fact's are that I've lost 25BB in both my last 2 sessions but in both I suffered a hand where I suffered a reversal of at least 20BB in equity (went from having a 16BB share of a 20BB pot and lost 9BB instead or something similar) and things like that can really kill your short term winrate.  I've just got to learn not to give a shit.

I don't think it helps that I've been stressed out of my tree recently so any slight poke (especailly if it's losing 4 times in the first 10 hands where the minimum amout of equity I had when my oppoent's spewed on the flop was 60%) can get me agitated.  Fortauntely I've got 5 days off now so can chill mayself out, make some vids and hopefully get back on track.

Tbh I think more than anything else it's wounded my pride.  Last year I have such a great year and was creaming 2/4 and 3/6 but now I'm back down in the doldrums and struglling like the last year didn't happen and it's extremely frustrating because I feel like I've put a ton of work in and sadly just fallen victim to circumstance (both in poker in RL sadly so it's bit of a dual whammy)

That said, let's get back on the trail.


Posted By Boomer at 02:38 PM


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