October 25, 2009

Hilarious Jerry Yang Encounter, Group Coaching with DJ Sensei!

What’s up Degens?

Before I start rambling, I wanted to let everyone know that DJ Sensei and I are going to be offering group coaching beginning in November. DJ and I have already put a lot of work into the program, and I think the students who participate will get a ton of value out of it. It’s cool because I learned a ton from DJ’s videos when I first started playing, so having the opportunity to coach with him will definitely be an enlightening experience. For the sake of laziness, I’ll just copy the overview of our program from DJ’s blog (www.senseipoker.com):

“I’ve only occasionally done group coaching sessions in the past, but I think that it offers a good opportunity to offer better value to students without losing much quality and individual attention. John and I have put in some work planning it out and I expect it to be awesome. We’re going to offer group coaching together, focusing on small to midstakes players who are looking to either add PLO to their skillset or take their game to the next level. There will likely be multiple levels of long-session groups (2 sessions of 2 hours each, hoping to cover a lot of ground and make significant progress fast) and a few more specific topic offerings (playing cap PLO, transitioning from NLHE to PLO, etc.) that we’ll offer as a single session. I think we’ll be set up and accepting students within the next few weeks, let me know if you’re interested!”

As always, here’s a few songs from my playlist right now. Check ‘em out! My Clipse station on Pandora is really sick, and I’ve heard a lot of new songs I really like. I think I’d be happy listening solely to Neptune and Primo beats the rest of my life; they really are the best in the bizz.

Jadakiss ft. Pharell – Stress Ya
Jay Z – Empire State of Mind
Method Man/Redman – A Yo

Also, I stumbled upon a couple of other really cool blog posts that I think people would be interested in. The first is from FoxWoodsFiend, and it’s a short post that’s from a G-Chat conversation between him and Krantz. This sounds ordinary, but if you take a look at it you’ll see what I mean… It’s crazy to put yourself in his shoes. The guy is about my age, is in Law School at Harvard, and sits in class running 20k bluffs, lol. You can find it here http://foxwoodsfiend.com/?p=523

The next post is from InternetPokers, which you can find here http://blogs.cardrunners.com/BLAG/its-all-luck-anyway-1256382638
I’ve said before how much I like his blog due to his insightful and well written philosophies on poker from the perspective of a high stakes player, but this one is about the nasty part of poker that people don’t really like to discuss very much. If you’ve ever seen any of his videos, you’ll know he’s a world class player, and is truly on another level. I have to say it’s a little disheartening/frightening to see a player of his caliber getting crushed. If it can happen to him, it can definitely happen to anyone else.

I’ve often pondered my long term goals poker goals, and the conclusions I come to generally depend on what kind of day you’ll ask me. If I’m crushing, I’ll tell you that I’m going to shot take at the high stakes games some day, but if I’m losing or breaking even, I’ll tell you my long term goal is to crush 400-1kplo. Reading an entry like his makes the shot taking side of me a little hesitant…

Sorry for the lack of updates the last few weeks, but things have been a little bit crazy, and if you’ve read any of my other entries, you’ll notice I don’t particularly like the writings to be short. Nevertheless, I have many things (both poker related and IRL) to spill out, so let’s get on with it.

First, if you’re reading this only for poker stuff, you can skip towards the bottom, but I know many people are interested in the non-degen stuff so I’ll start with that. Earlier in the week, I got a call from my Mom telling me that my Grandma wasn’t doing too well (she’s 89), and that I should come home to see her before she passes. Fortunately I was planning on driving back to CO from Santa Cruz in early November anyway, so the sudden change of plans wasn’t a huge deal. After I hung up the phone, I quickly threw together all my belongings and headed towards CO.

Since I driving 20 hours straight is not only boring but hazardous as well, I decided to make a stop in Vegas on the way to Denver in hopes of making some money and recharging a bit. I stayed at my uncles condo in southern Vegas, which was sweet because I didn’t have to worry about checking in etc.

I got into Vegas around 11pm, so my timing was pretty awesome for putting in a late night session. After dropping my stuff off at the condo, I headed to the Venetian to put in a quick session. On the way to the casino, I figured the games would be pretty crappy because it’s a Tuesday night, but in true Vegas style, what ended up transpiring was anything but ordinary..

I sat down in the 10 seat, and overheard the guys next to me saying that Jerry Yang was recently playing at the table. Being the live fish they are, this of course was one of the most magical moments of their lives (sad imo). Seriously, you would’ve thought the Beatles just played Yellow Submarine for them or something.

Anyway, a few minutes pass and they wouldn’t shut up about Jerry Yang being there. Observing my obvious disinterest, they point out that his wife is still sitting at the table seeing some hands to try to get me more jazzed up about the situation. At this point I’m just kind of shrugging it off, and trying to get in the zone to play poker.

After another five minutes, an Asian guy dressed in a light jacket and cap sits down next to the Asian lady whom the guys next to me claimed to be Jerry’s wife. Once I saw the guy, I was pretty unconvinced of his proclaimed identity, so I expressed my skepticism to the guy next to me (who at this point I couldn’t tell if he was an idiot, or just extremely wasted). The guy on my right furthered my skepticism by agreeing that he didn’t think it was Jerry Yang either. I can’t really put my finger on what it was, but somehow I just couldn’t believe that Jerry Yang would be playing 2/5NL on a Tuesday night in Vegas, in addition to the fact that the guy seemed too tall to be Jerry, and just seemed like too much of a ‘regular guy’ to qualify as Jerry.

Anyway, so the guy on my left wouldn’t shut up about it, and being in a casino at the table, the obvious proposition arises “I’ll bet you money that he’s really Jerry Yang”. I try to shut him up by overbetting, and tell him I’ll bet him $500 that it isn’t Jerry Yang (at this point I’m about 80% sure it isn’t him). Before I could even finish the sentence, the guy quick calls my bet, so I got kind of nervous about it. Like wtf is this guy so sure he’s Jerry Yang?

Haha, as a sidenote, the guy says “Look man, it’s not even about the money for me. If I win the bet, I’ll give the money to Jerry”. And I’m of course thinking “wtf, the guy won $9MM, wtf would he want $100 bucks?”.

In any case, we agreed to bet $100 on the bet, and I ask him how we’re going to prove it. He explains that he’ll just go ask him for his ID, which seems ok since I don’t have to suffer through the awkwardness of telling this guy we’re betting on his physical appearance matching up with some degen we’ve seen on TV.

So the guy goes over there, asks ‘Jerry’ for his ID, and they’re talking/pointing at me, which is standard at this point. Then after a few seconds, the two of them walk over, and ‘Jerry’ says “hey man, your friend told me about the bet, so I think I have to show you this”. He of course pulls out his wallet, and sure enough it really is Jerry Yang, lolol. So anyway at this point I’m just like wtf, I can’t believe I lost $100 to this asshole, but at the same time, I don’t really know how to act because I kind of hate Jerry Yang for the simple fact that he ran super hot and binked a big tourney when in reality he’s a terrible player.

Ok, to make it even worse, Jerry says to me “stick with your dreams kid, I’m living proof that dreams come true”. I’m like ummm…. what?

Then he says to me “Also, I wanted to let you know, that the money you lost to your friend here is being donated to the Ronald McDonald House, because I’m all about that kind of stuff. That’s what I’m all about”…

I’m just like wtf is going on here, this is SOOO awkward! He was basically acting like I was this huge fan of his, when in reality I think he’s just this big tool hahahah. Anyway, then the guy who I lost the bet to says “hey man, do you want your picture with Jerry Yang?”, and I of course say “no, that’s ok I’m good”, and then Jerry (with his hand on my shoulder at this point) further tries to coax me into a picture, saying he wants to use it to give to the Ronald McDonald foundation… Oh yes, this is all true, and yes, it gets better..

So then as we’re discussing taking this picture, the dealer says “sir it’s on you”, and I of course look at my hand, which is obviously KK. So I’m just completely thrown off now, thinking holy shit I have a monster and Jerry Yang won’t leave me alone!

I open to 25, and as the guy is taking the picture on his phone, you can see my eyes looking towards the table because I’m trying to follow the action, hahah, I was literally completely uninterested in getting my picture taken with the “world champ”.

So as I’m playing the KK hand, Jerry is standing right behind me, and I end up losing a stack when I got AI on the flop against A5dd on 4TKdd with Jerry fuckin’ Yang standing right behind me! I’m kind of tilted now because he’s still trying to get attention from me, and I just want to scream at him to go sit the fuck down because he’s tilting me so bad!
So I reload, and then a few hands later it folds to me in MP w/KTcc. I raise 4x to 20, Jerry’s wife calls me on the BTN (she was pretty LP, I only saw her 3b once and it was AA) and so do both of the blinds. Flop is 8c9cQx, checks to me and I bet 60 into 80. Jerry’s wife calls me, and so does the BB. Turn is a 5, and it checks to me again. Everyone’s ranges are super wide on the flop, and we’re deep now (I reloaded to 1k), so I figure I can bet and take it down a lot, plus if someone raises I have good implied odds depending on how much they raise given how deep we are, and I don’t expect them to have 67 here very much. So I bet 150 into 200, and get called only by Jerry’s wife. Ok at this point, I’m thinking she has to have a combo draw similar to mine, bottom two that she doesn’t know what to do with, or QK that she doesn’t want to fold or something. Surely a stronger hand would raise to protect on a board like that, right? Anyway, river is 6h, so I’m thinking there’s enough money out there where I have to bet, and given what I said about her raising me with any kind of made hand I think I can take it down here a lot by betting, and obv can’t win at showdown. I bet 250 into 500, and she of course shoves… wtf did she have? Hahaha, anyway, she shows a set of 9’s, and scoops a nice pot from me… And of course Jerry has the most bush league smile on his face the whole time. I’m soooo tilted about Jerry at this point, that I just get up and leave to go play at the Wynn, lol.

Hmmmm… What else… Ahh yes, the Broncos are 6-0 bitches! WTF are you kidding me? It’s cool being back in Denver to watch the games, and it’s pretty hilarious how the success of a sports team can improve your overall level of happiness in daily life. I’m so pissed they have a bye today, because I’ve really enjoyed watching them play this year, especially since they’ve been a buzzkill the last few years. They always seemed to have a promising start and then fizzle towards the end of the year.

A funny sidenote is that in June a bunch of my friends and I went to Brewfest up in Fort Collins, and we got in a heated discussion about the state of the team when we were wasted. I think there were six of us, and we were pretty divided on how the future of the Broncos was going to pan out. I believed we’d be ok, and I was pretty pissed at how Culter acted on the way out. My friends strongly disagreed, and thought Cutler was God’s gift to football teams blah blah blah. Since we were wasted, this obviously led to betting, and I ended up betting three of my friends $100 each that the Broncos would win more than 6 games… Needless to say I’ve been talking soooo much shit on them the last few weeks, so it’s been extra sweet watching the Broncos spit in the face of the haters.

I have some poker content to write about, but I think I’ll make this into two blogs because this one is already long enough.

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