The Bad Beat BBQ

Stylish writing at the right price.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Big fan of Jan and the Leather Ass Award

What a year it's been! I'm ready to skip the next 11 months and ring in the new year again. Why ?? you ask. Well, it's because January is my all time best month of the year for poker play and this one topped them all. I don't know what it is about the month that produces the effect but at this point I have stopped wondering and started taking advantage. But let's take a look anyhow. What could it be? Perhaps it's just as simple as the fresh perspective that a new year allows you to view the world from. There are few distractions other than the cold and my job is at its slowest in Jan so that might be part of it. Maybe it's the cold, cloudless nights that January brings so we may again watch Orion the Hunter on his quest to slay all the beasts in the sky. I've made it a custom to look up at the stars on the way to a poker game as a way to ground myself, focus and ready my mind for battle on the felt. Maybe it's just the cold. I think the cold slows me down so I can play patient poker and pay attention to the others at the table. In the summer you have a thousand things to do and the heat in these parts can play tricks with your head. The heat makes you anxious and aggressive like a New Yorker in the Summer of 77'. While aggression at the poker table is a plus, it must be tempered with restraint or you may run the risk of a meltdown.

Going back to the days of ordering drinks on Paradise Poker back in 2004 I can recall that January depositing $50 and playing the lowest penny stakes cash NL Holdem tables. I ran that up to over $500 that month and so began the January run that continues to this day. Just last year I drove to Atlantic City and crashed in on the room of my cousin who goes each year in Jan for some kind of conference. Can you say "free room"? Well I cashed a $150 check from Full Tilt Poker at the bank right beside the Tropicana and then I walked in and sat down at a 1-2 NL table around 9pm. Space and time both dissolved like Alka Seltzer into the free flowing Vodka Red Bull as the night brought new players, dealers and waitresses. I emerged from the haze when my friends showed up beside the poker table with my suitcase and belongings. We had been kicked out of our room they said. I asked my cousin what had happened and they all laughed. "It's 2pm and we had to be out of the room at 11am", chided cousin Curtis. WTF trampled across my frontal lobe as I came to the realization that I had not so much as left my seat to use the bathroom in 15 hours. Casinos are evil constructions in so many ways. The friends gazed upon my chipstack with looks of incredulity as I counted off my winnings for the first time like Kenny Rogers tells you to.....when the dealn's done (1min 32sec). I had managed to parlay that $150 into well over $1200 during the course of the night.

I got the leather ass award that day and it stands as my longest and most profitable cash game session to date. On a side note...I saw a drunk guy fall down the escalator and his coat got caught in the teeth at the bottom and it was squeezing him so hard he started crying. The whole place fell silent under the cloud of confusion and chaos took over momentarily but I never left my seat even for that.

That brings us to this January. Our new Friday night poker venue is only a mile away and I've taken to riding my Go-Ped Scooter. I've now taken to riding it right up the ramp and into the storage building where we play while blasting Amy Winehouse( Rehab)on my mini Ipod speakers. It's a small game and we rarely have more than 6 people playing any given night but we have some interesting rules that guarantee a healthy prize pool. First off, there's the unlimited rebuys for the first three hours which guarantees that you won't be winning it all anytime soon. You can lose all your chips and then sit out as long as you like and then get back in right before the rebuys end. I've often taken a break from the game in just such a situation to regroup or grab a bite. So far we have only played winner take all and that makes sure that the winner gets a healthy reward. I came away from the month with two outright wins and one split where I came back from a 3.5 - 1 chip disadvantage to pull even and force Jack "the pigeon" to offer me a split. Even on that night after accepting the split I demanded that we sit aside $100 to play for heads up to determine a real winner and I took that match down in three hands. So i guess you could say I won three times. Cousin BJ "the freight train" took down the week where I was unable to attend and he came into last weeks game with an air of confidence. The first hand I was dealt pocket sevens and almost got it all in preflop against pocket eights and AQ but I folded only to see a 7 hit the turn and a 1st hand triple up was missed. Still, I felt good knowing that I had made the correct play preflop as I put "the pigeon"'s brother on a bigger pocket pair which he indeed had. I was the only one who didn't rebuy all night and despite Tonys best efforts and multiple rebuys he was unable to thwart "the steamroller" and I closed out January at 3am on the 31st with my biggest tournament win ever. Viva January!

It was a warm ride home on the scooter in 27 degree weather that night. Tonight the game is back on but it's Feb now so I look to be handing over the cash starting right away. Come n get it.


Hide your poker money in a hollow book...........

Free Hollow Books