Sunday, July 31, 2016

Coming Out Of The State Of Confusion

I've barely touched online play for several days until today. After switching it back to the tournament's again I found that I've come to a point in my poker journey where I was  feeling more confused than ever. I have gone from cash games to tournaments to cash games tournaments to cash games to tournaments for at least the last 6 months now and each time I've made the switch it seems the correct thing to do. The reason I was in the most recent switchback was because of a 15 buyin loss at the cash tables in July. But like what always happens I start asking myself was it the correct move??  Is it what I should be doing and that's where the confusion sets in, where it has been sitting in for the last 6 months, and the confusion is what causes me not to be able to choose a single path and stay on it.

Then the live game aspect came back into reality.  I ended up at the Golden Nugget on two specific days one of those days I spent 17 and a half hours inside that casino and to make a long story short, 14 hours 40 minutes playing $2/$4 limit cash games for total earnings of $150, of course if it wasn't for a high hand bonus those earnings would have been $38 but that's beside the point. 2 tournaments lost for a cost of $90 so a total profit of $60 and since this was poker related that $60 was added to the bankroll.  Some of my readers may be posing a question. Flushh didn't you just recently say you were bored the last time you were playing the $2/$4 tables and the answer would be yes, but I made some premature conclusions and did not think it out in its entirety. I wasn't bored with the game of $2/$4 limit Hold'em, but it was the specific game that I was in, the specific location to be precise.  I was at the Orleans that day and night and the Orleans is a borderline Geriatric Center with a bunch of elderly nits sitting around waiting for bad beats to happen. I can't speak for the other games, but in the $2/$4 game over there the action is almost minimal.  The final session of $2/$4 limit that I played at the Golden Nugget went almost 12 hours.  Obviously if I'm playing a game for 12 hours it can't be boring me and actually that session at the Golden Nugget was just the opposite. I was struggling before that high hand hit. A flopped set cracked by 85o, a flush beat by a higher flush, a straight beat a full house and even lost with a full house to a bigger full house put me about $140 down, but even during all that I was so in the zone, I was absorbing every moment of that game, craving for more and more and more, I couldn't get enough, it was like a drug, the most addictive drug in the world and I just sat there never wanting it to end. Don't get me wrong I wanted the session losses to end and turn around no doubt about it, but I mean every other aspect of that poker game I felt like I could sit there forever and a day.  Of course, the Golden Nugget is not filled with nits, it is filled with loose passive fish willing to let the chips fly, calling stations that call flop bets with 55 on AK9 boards, players that limp into 100% of the hands they are dealt. I am not joking there are players that do this every single hand they are dealt they put their $2 in and many times take it all the way to the river just call call call, and last, but certainly not least, people with the absolute nuts and they call River bets and no not because they were sitting with a friend at the table it's obvious that these players don't know one another and they call it the absolute nuts on the river, I mean how can you not love a game filled with players like that?? 

As far as live tournaments go I learned something very important. The $45 tournaments are out of my playlist in a live setting. I do not like $5K starting stacks, it does not give me the room I want to maneuver. Any future live tournaments I play, unless it's simply an occasion just getting together with friends to have some fun, will be a minimum 10K starting stack and for that those will be starting buyins of at least $65. 

So I went back to the tournaments for a few days online and made a few dollars doing so, but there was something nagging at me something telling me this is just another instance where I decided to go back to something old and abandoned something else. Just the same old story where poor ClaudePOKERAA gets dizzy watching me go back and forth. Of course I will take this opportunity to say that I really didn't appreciate Claude going back and quoting previous entries just to throw it in my face. Just because I write something does not mean it's etched in stone and if I am going through a confusing time as I admit I have been for months, the last thing I need is somebody pulling something from an entry or two ago or even further than that and saying hey look this is what you said about this. Really bro it wasn't appreciated, but hey what can I say some people have a need to figuratively kick somebody when they're down.  I wouldn't personally do it to somebody going through a difficult time, enough said. I needed time and what better way to spend that time then in a casino. I needed time to sort out what's been happening. Some late-night poker talk with my main bro Joseph (maninblack) about the situation, there were comments on the blog, a conversation with my friend Michelle who is a damn fine cash game player in her own right about the downswing that I hit and the possibilities of such things happening and there were things that I just had to put together and through it all I finally realized what I needed to do, but with that there have also been some changes to the overall goals and the current plan progression. 

I need to give a shout out to Joseph as during our long poker talks he gave his input on certain things that I disagreed with, but it turned out he was absolutely right. You were right Joseph I cannot take it back and don't worry my friend, even if I tried to deny it later on down the road I'm sure Claude would be able to find two single sentences out of a six or seven paragraph post and throw that out there for all of us to see so no worries. The first thing Joseph told me was that my $2,000 goal was not enough for a full bankroll grind at $2/$4 limit cash games live. I felt he was being overly conservative and quite frankly, may have on one or two occasions, when we discussed this particular thing asked him point-blank, "Are you out of your ever-lovin fkn mind?" Turns out that the FAQ section of the low stakes limit Hold'em section of 2+2 says the very same thing that many professionals utilize a bankroll of 1000 big bets. The exact same thing Joseph was telling me was completely confirmed by an industry respected poker source. Maybe I should learn to listen to my friends a little bit more.

The second thing was Joe had recommended was that I cut back from 6 tables back to 4. At the time I was losing less on 6 tables that I had on 4 tables to start the month off and you guys are not going to believe the rest of the story. I was so consumed with doing what I wanted to do, so focused on grinding as many hands as I could, I was completely ignoring the fact that the new sizing on the six tables..... I couldn't see what was completely happening on those tables. Let me explain that further. I could see my hole cards and I could see the cards on the board, but what I couldn't make out, what was nothing but blurred really was the betting amounts that the players would put out in the No Limit cash games. A lot of times I was making my best estimate as to what the amount was. I could double click the top of the table to bring It to full screen real quick and see it exactly and then double-click it again to bring it back down to its original size, but the problem was when I was doing that it was causing me to time out on tables and I was being timed out from time to time with pocket aces. So I stopped enlarging them and to be completely honest with you I was basically guessing at what the bet sizes precisely were many times. I could tell if it was under a dollar by the amount of digits in it, but if it was over a dollar I could see the curve of the second number but could never be sure if it was a $1.30 as opposed to $1.80 as an example and as after I admitted this to Joseph in one of our conversations he pointed out how many times did somebody bet $8 and you thought they'd bet $3 and obviously it would have happened without me ever knowing it because with the six tables popping one after another I wasn't going back to look at the sizes in the replayer.  I really thought that I could get by the way I was going under those circumstances. it was obviously a very foolish thing to do and I think had more to do with personal pride and ego than anything else. So I told him last night that no matter what I did, it was obvious to me, after admitting the absolute foolishness that I had committed, that because of my limited vision I had to stick with four tables and four tables only, but there was still a problem. All of a sudden the goal is now $4,000 and how the hell am I going to get four grand??  I'm certainly not going to do it playing the $1 and $2 tournaments and I'm certainly not going to be able to do it playing $10NL so I guess the bottom line was I was pretty much screwed, but that's the great thing about talking poker with a fellow poker-playing friend. You can bounce ideas off of each other, a person can recommend one thing then its discussed then recommend something else and then the other person can come up with something and just keep bouncing those ideas off of another person can be so helpful and then I came up with a possibility and I ran it by him to get his opinion.

AgSweep left a comment in which she said in part "build in some variety but still potentially working towards your goals."  This particular comment just slammed into me in a good way and then I realized variety is the key to it all. The switching back and forth has obviously been an attempt at variety in my poker which at times I totally realized and other times I have not, but what if I could do this variety on a daily basis. Combine the cash games and tournaments at the same time. Completely dismiss the $1 and $2 tournaments and only play the $3 rebuys 4 times a day along with the cash games from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.  it seems like the absolute perfect idea but my ideas over the last six months sometimes leave something to be desired but my friend Joseph thought it was an excellent idea. I was glad he thought so I just needed some sort of confirmation for my own psychological well-being if nothing else. 

I decided to implement this new approach immediately. However if I'm going to play these rebuys I need to play at full strength and that means an immediate rebuy which by the way I noticed WSOP has increased it and it is now charging the rake on the rebuy which that's not what they did before but it's only an extra 27 cents, but the bottom line is each one of these tournaments is going to cost $8.73 assuming I make it to the add-on. A daily total cost of just under $35 and at the same time try to grind the cash games for probably at least 2000 hands a day and do all of this on a $500 bankroll. Can it be done is the only question that's left.

I was actually going to take the next couple of days off and just start this all in August, but as the old saying goes "no time like the present" and besides maybe if I play the final two days in July it can help me salvage this month at least a little bit. I got on the tables just before 9 a.m. in time for the first $3 rebuy tournament, but didn't even make it to the add-on.. I am taking the immediate rebuy as I stated before and the add-on, but if I get knocked out before the add-on. I am not rebuying additionally. The 9 a.m. and 12 p.m. were futile however I did make the final table out of 89 players in the 4 p.m. finishing 6th for a return of $40.95.   Ended up quitting the session 21 minutes before 11 as I was just so damn tired.  The cash games which was predominantly 3 tabling most of the day along with a tournament going was 2208 hands played and earnings of $18.88.  It would have been more were in not for two errors made that ended up costing me a solid $10, but hey, live and learn.  Still the session earn rate was over 8bb/100 so can't complain.  However Joseph is going to be impossible about this as he told me he was sure as soon as I returned to playing a max of 4 tables I would pull a winning session.  Grrrrr. Ok Joseph, but before you hurt your arm patting yourself on the back it was only the first session,  Many more need to be played to prove anything lol.

I'm going to end this entry by following the advice given by Seattle Irish where he said don't make any definite declarations and I will not.  I am doing this for now and hopefully I will be doing this for the forseeable future, but for right now I will take it one day at a time.  Until next time take care everyone and I'll see you at the tables.

Goal:  $4000
Bankroll:  $539.64
Progress:  13.5%


  1. No need to take it back. Its not like i have this screen shotted or anything and definately not going to be notarized and framed when i get off work.

  2. Whew!!! (wipes sweat off brow) you took my comment as it was intended. Good Luck this month and have fun!

  3. I hope you do follow s.i.'s excellent advice.

    Flushh, if you are going to publish a blog and have anything to say, don't be surprised if some people don't agree with you or point out discrepancies in what you you say and/or do. If you're looking for everyone to be a cheerleader, you will end up disappointed or upset.

    Go back and look at ClaudePOKERAA's comment: "Tony Big Charles changes locations, and you change variants of poker. It’s cool bro you have a good way with words and I am rooting for you big time, I just don’t want you to fool yourself into thinking this path is something new, you do this all the time." The dude said that he was ROOTING FOR YOU. I'm guessing you weren't pleased with my comment either although you didn't call me out. Some of us don't blow smoke up anybody's butt. That doesn't mean we want you to fail.

  4. Your description of the Golden Nugget $2/$4 limit game is spot on. That actually is a game that money can be made in especially if the majority of the table has bought in deep and $1500 to $2000 is there for the taking. Do they still give a $10 food comp out for 4 hours of play??