The Bad Beat BBQ

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Monday, September 12, 2005

a Poker lesson or two

Well, it's Friday again and that means it's poker night. I felt good going into the tourney this week and I had plans to loosen up a bit after last weeks bad fold debacle. I arrived with my dad about 15 minutes late because work has been hectic lately and Fridays are the worst. My chips are waiting however and I have yet to be blinded once so things are working out superbly. I drop the pile of crap that I bring every week, including my Onyx Cigars, official blogger notepad, bubblegum and my six pack assortment of microbrews from across the world. I'm positively itching as I grab up my first hand of the nite fresh from the dealers fingertips. AQ of diamonds. Not bad. Not bad at all. I'm in the middle position with the starting blinds of $10 -$20 and I make it $60 to go. Of course, since this is the donkfest WSOP I got 5 callers and nearly lost my will to raise forever right off the bat.

When I announced my raise (a skill which Jimmy Smith has yet to master at the age of 58-65 ??? **see below**), Sammy remarked curiously that he was about to raise if I did not. I should have taken this announcemnt more seriously as you will soon see. Sammy instead chooses to just call.
FLOP !!! A 2 3 What more could I ask for ? To tell you the truth, that ace scared the pants off of me. It was at that moment that I knew what Sammy had. Well, I thought I did. I hoped he didn't but thought he might have AK. I was about to find out because he was in the small blind and he bet $200. Everyone folded to me and I pushed in my entire stack. I told Sammy to show me AK and he did. "Martha Farkn Stewart !!", I said. REBUY !!! Out on the first frickin hand. No way I was getting away from that.
Let me tell you something. I'm 32 years old and I have been playing poker for 15 years in one form or another. I don't prefess to be an all knowing all seeing poker guru or anything but I know the basics. Call, check, raise, fold (<--- that one's still tough). I try to politely inform people of the correct proceedures when they make obvious mistakes and we have have several naggingly habitual bad habits that permeate the fabric of our game.I'm going to expound upon a few of them and mentionin the worst offenders by name.

1. Folding out of turn is very popular and about half the folks do it once or twice a night. Some are worse than others but Jimmy is by far the worst. Fellas, it only takes a few seconds to wait your turn and then gently toss your cards forwards so be patient. Friday noght only comes once a week so sit back and enjoy it. When you fold out of turn it destroys the action and affects everyone in the hand. It gives information to people on your right that their risk is lowered to enter the hand. Not to mention that it's incredubly rude and assholish.

2. Calling and then raising. As in........ "I call"...pause........."and I'll put you all in." This is bullshit. Pure and simple bullshit. Jimmy Smith is the worst for this but my old man is a close second. The proper way to do it is to say "RAISE". Saying the word raise is not in and of itself going to scare your opponents out of the hand if you have your monster. And saying the word raise is not some kind of tell that will give free information to the table and reveal the strength or weakness of your hand. The word raise is a declaration of the fact that you intend to do something other than Fold or Call. It's that simple. If you are folding then everyone understands that you have thrown your cards into the muck and that your hand is dead. No need to say the word Fold. If you want to then by all means go ahead. Nobody will mind and it might even keep people on the left of you awake. If you are calling, then just mumble "call" like everyone else and neatly slide or thwomp your chips if front of you. ( Just don't splash the pot ,Teddy, unless it's your club.)

Jimmy did this twice tonight and the second time it pissed me off royally. I had QKh and I made a 3x BB raise from the button with it. I get two callers and one of them is Jimmy across the table. When the flop came down Ac 8c 5c it's checked around to me. I make a bet the size of the pot and the Big Blind folds. Jimmy peers down at the board from behind his stubby unlit dimestore cigar for a moment and calls. The he says "And I put you all in". WTF do you do in this situation ? What would happen in a cardroom ? Is his hand dead ? Does he half to wait til the next card come up and then go all in ? I rememebr during the 25K WPT Chanpionship event that world renowned poker pro Hassan Habib mistakingly called and then tried to go all in in much the same manner. He was forced by the tournament officials to call and then see the turn card. Of course he flopped two pair and wasted no time in moving in on Tuan Lee the moment the turn hit the felt, but it could have cost him dearly if Tuan had tripped up. If I had my wits about me and my blood was not boiling I guess I could have forced him to let me see the turn card before calling or folding. I had a sneaking suspicion that my Kings were good but I was taken out of position which was rightfully mine by his jackass illegal move. I folded in utter dusgust with the veins in my nexh throbbing. I asked his son Toby if he and his dad were close. Toby replaied that they were very close but that he could handle himself. See you next week Jimmy.

(UPDATE) Direct from Robert's Rules of Poker

8. A verbal statement denotes your action and is binding. If in turn you verbally declare a fold, check, bet, call, or raise, you are forced to take that action.

9. Rapping the table with your hand is a pass .

10. Deliberately acting out of turn will not be tolerated. A player who checks out of turn may not bet or raise on the next turn to act. An action or verbal declaration out of turn may be ruled binding if there is no bet , call, or raise by an intervening player acting after the infraction has been committed.

9:46 I limp into an unraised pot in the hammer position and Uncle Tony raises it $20 more dollars to $40. Jimmy raises it to $400 and I fold. Tony calls. FLOP !!! A 2 9 Jimmy checks and Tony moves in for $4000. Jimmy stares at the board a minute and then calls showing 8 8. Tony had flopped a set of twos and he obliterates the old man. I'll give Jimmy credit for one thing, he's fearless. But he's also foolish and now he's busted.
(Hand of the Week ) Jimmy rebuys.

9:51 I hear gaffaws from the Ocatgonal table behind me and just then TJ walks by and tells me that Johnny Buzz had just tripled through both Ronnie and Uncle Bill when he made a flush with J3c. Ronnie and Bill both had pocket Kings and were stunned. Ronnie rebought and Bill lost 70% of his stack.

Just to add to my misery, Jimmy took me out of the game 20 minutes later when I got unlucky to catch top pair on the river in an unraised pot where he had turned trip fours with some weak ass hand like 10 4 offsuit. I moved over to the Octagonal table to deal for a little while. I left the Round table with my head down a bit as I peered back at the chipstacks. My Uncle Tony ( my dads youngest brother) finaly showed up to the game after months of poking & prodding and his ultra loose-aggressive style has earned him $4000 while Sammy's Ultra Weak-Tight play has him at about $3400 thank in part to my first hand donation.

Blah Blah Blah. People bust out. People suckout. People Fold. You know. Who really cares when your not playing anymore ?
11:10 Finally........ a losers table breaks out. $20 Buyin. Consisting of myself, my dad, Uncle Bill, Ronnie, and Bosey. After we had played 3-4 hands, Jackie (lasts weeks big game winner) busts out from the final table and wants to sit down with us. Fine by me and fine by the others. Prizepool now $120. So if I win I can erase my $40 loss and actually make $60. Well, soon after Jackie sat down I started to catch some cards. I flopped a straight with 7 10 suited and slowplayed it til the river, just calling the bets being made. I made a move at the pot on the river and everyone folded, but the pot was nice.

The action was quick so I am trying to recall some of the hands for you. None really seem to come to mind except for this one. I had A 10 on the button and made a 4x BB raise. Uncle Bill called from the SB and Ronnie Called from the BB. When the flop was ten high with two clubs I pushed all in. Bill considered folding and then called with Q5c. I told him when he dropped his hand to the felt that he was a 2-1 underdog to make that flush and he just nodded. Even if I lost I was hoping to stick a needle in his brain and the collective brains of the table that chasing flushes is a bad idea. Maybe I'm sick of the suckouts, or maybe I'm just showing off my TV Poker watching skills. When the turn was a brick, I pointed out that he was now a 4-1 underdog to make his flush. The river was another beautiful brick I sent Bill to the rail.

11:23 ish (Uncle Tony busts out from the final table thanks to the same Ultra Loose-Aggressive play that got him all those beautiful chips and he gathers his sutff to go home and sleep. He has and acre of lawn to mow tomorrow and I'm sure he'll sleep til noon if his wife and kids let him)

Oh yeah. I also picked up the Midlife Crisis hand (44) and reraised my dad all in. He called with AJ remarking that he hadn't won a race all night and didn't expect to now. He didn't : )

Now we get down to heads up. It's me against Ronnie. I think I had like a 2 1/2 - 1 chiplead. The third hand of heads up I get the mother of all hands. No, not Ace Ace. Better. Q 8 suited.
Q8 is always the nuts. I have a hard time folding Q8 these days. My old man has made a poker living with the hand for the last several months online as well as at our homegame ever since winning the final table with it back in July. I started noticing shortly thereafter that, everytime I got the hand and folded it (like a sane person) the the flop hit me in the balls and left me wondering why i folded if I had a feeling it was gonna hit ? So I started holding onto it for at least a look at the flop when it was cheap. As you can see at the top of this entry, I played it on Bodog last week and totally befuddled this guy who exclaimed following the hand..."How the %&$#@ can you play that trash ?" I answered honestly. It's my dad's favorite hand. He laughed and we became fast friends.

OK. So I pick up this monster Q8 suited and I announce "ALL IN". Ronnie's head pops up from the table like he's got KK in his hand and he calls almost instantly. I'm not even worried if he has KK. WHy ? Becasue Q8 is the nuts, that's why. When he shows J9d I'm feeling a bit funny, because I love J9 alomst as much as TJ Cloutier does. I yell over to Tj. (aka Food Lion) that I'm all in with my dads favorite hand. He says, "what ? Q8 ?". I yell back......"Yeah......suited!" He askes what Ronnie has and I tell him that he in fact has my favorite hand. TJ guesses that correctly too but he's in a hand and won't come watch.

FLOP !!! A 10 7 Unelected Queen high still in the lead. TURN !!! Jc Hey, that may look like a bad card for me, but it give me some outs. Any club for a flush or a Unelected Queen will do just fine. That's 15 outs right there. RIVER !!! 9s. Damnit. No club. No Unelected Queen. And Ronnie just made two pair. But all the cards look so close together. I shuffle them around until I can arrange them into a lovely srtaight. 8 9 10 J Q Ronnie stands up in disbelief. I was starting to feel unsure myself and wanted to gather up the cards before I realized I was mistaken. Bt there it was. The gutshot straight I wasn't even looking for. I told you Q8 is the nuts
(even if it's the 2nd nuts).

Final table recap. Four left. Sammy is holding on to his stack for a change and TJs tight aggressive play has him a nice stack too. Johnny Buzz is holding his own and the short stack is Toby. We are paying out 4 places tonight thanks to all the rebuys. I'm dealing again. Johnny makes a move back at TJ by reraising him all in. TJ doesn't seem to want to, but he calls and shows AQd. The very hand I busted out with at the beginning of the night. When Johnny shows Ace Ace he looks like a genius.

Ad Qd VS Ac As

Odds against TJ Winning
Ad Qd 11.92%
As Ac 86.84%

But when I turn the first card and it's a 4 of diamonds, I can smell the suckout. TJ would indeed catch two more diamonds and pull off the suckout of the night. So long Johnny. WTF are you gonna do with the beast dan hand you can get ?? Johnny takes it better than I ever could and walks away smiling. TJ bows his head in shame as he should.

I don't recall the hand but the Great Wall of Toby (for how he stacks his chips) gets breached and he collects his 3rd place prize. I waste no time in heckling him over it since I made more by winning the losers table : ) But Kevin Harvick won the race so he was happy.

The final hand between TJ and Sammy doesn't come for another half hour at least. These two are tighter than you high school blue jeans fresh out of the dryer. It came down to a a kicker as is usually does. Sammy's K3 is taken down by TJ's K7. Not a monster kicker, but effective.

Congrats TJ. Now go get a damn haricut : )

Ronnie mentions an idea before we break up for the night. We are now considering taking out $20 from the prizepool each week to fund a championship tournament sometime in December. We need to fine tune it a bit but somehow we want to come up with a points system that will allow the money finishers each week to accumulate points towards and entry into the Pink Sky Poker Club Championship (I came up with that name due to the ceiling consisting of pink insulation in the basement we play in). We even talked about getting a cheap bracelet or something for the winner to sport. Any ideas on where to get something like that ? Let me know.

Be sure to stop by FiveHundy by Midnight "The original Las Vegas Podcast" and brush up on your Vegas acumen.
This week features a phone call by yours truly. Even Adam Curry's Daily Source Code is high on FHBM because he featured a promo for the show on his Monday episode.

When you're between hands flash over to Iggy's Party Poker Blog and sharpen your online poker skills.


  • At 7:36 AM , Anonymous TOBY said...


  • At 8:08 AM , Blogger ChaseNFold said...

    Inaccuracies must be taken in stride once I am bounced from the game sir. TY for the correction.

    By the way, post or send me your email address so I can contact you directly. email

  • At 8:09 AM , Blogger ChaseNFold said...

    Oh yeah. I corrected it too.


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