Friday, December 11, 2009


I guess I'm a little late getting into this blog thing. But that's my style. I was wearing a ton of flannel way before grunge, and I refused to stop wearing it when grunge was big just because people thought I was being trendy, and I kept wearing it well after people thought it was passe. I started playing hold 'em about six years ago, but have just started taking it seriously this year. I love chess too, but poker has a certain appeal. In chess, if you work hard and do everything right, you will win. Not so in poker. You can do everything right, study your opponent, set a trap, make the right read, get your money in good, and then the clown hits a one outer to win on the river. I find this to be a lot more like real life. Poker is a wonderful blend of psychology, strategy, execution, joy, and despair. Just like life.
I feel like I am embarking on an exciting new journey of discovery in poker, and you're invited to come along too. It might lead to disgust, burnout, and frustration, or it might lead to a new world of opportunity. And you can say you were there way back when.....
My new found devotion to poker is a funny story in itself. This year I moved to rural Maine to get healthy. Boredom is the number one cash crop out here. Thank god for online poker. I started playing quite a bit every day. My results were the same as they had always been. I would go up and down, but slowly and inexorably my account would dwindle to zero. A couple months ago, my friend Rob (who introduced me to hold 'em) sent me Action Dan Harrington's book on poker. What a revelation! I would read Harrington's book while playing at PokerStars and apply what I was learning. It felt like I was at a party and I had just been led onto a balcony where I could look back at all the other clueless partygoers. Of course, there's still the VIP rooms in back that I haven't made it to yet, but I'm working on it. Why did I wait so long to read a book about poker?!? Probably my natural stubborness. I'm the kind of person that wants to learn everything on their own. I worked my way up from dishwasher to executive chef. Fuck culinary school! I'm a self taught painter. Those pompous art school profs can shove their rules and trends up their asses! Unfortunately, I was one of the worst kinds of poker player: one who thinks he's good, but isn't. Very dangerous to your bankroll, that technique is!
Flash forward to Thanksgiving of this year. I'm a big fan of Tao of Poker, and Pauly was hosting the 3rd annual Turkey Cup. I had to play in it. So, I took my last $5 and popped it down on the tourney. It was a blast. Everyone was either a blogger or a fan, so the level of play was very good. It was nice to be at a table where people chatted and complimented each other, instead of criticizing and insulting. I busted out in 40th out of 84 after making a dumb pre flop call with 8's against BadBlood's all-in with kings. After I was out, AlCantHang moved into my seat and said he was worried about a contact high. How the hell did he know I was smoking?! Then Pauly said that I was fake GMoney (my screen name was GMONEY722 for lack of anything else being available. Are there really 721 other GMoneys out there?). I remember sitting there and thinking "Wait....I'm not really me?" Funny existential moment. I was too baked to respond in time. No wonder everyone was being so friendly and saying "hi" etc! They all thought I was their fellow blogger Gmoney. Anyhoo, the Turkey Cup inspired me to focus more, and try to move to the next level of play. After the Turkey Cup ended (congrats Joanne), I put my last 10 cents on a 180 S&G and came in third place, winning a whopping two or three dollars. I took that and ground it up on the micro micro table's to $80 as of writing this. FELT UP will be about my love/hate relationship with poker, how poker is life, and where that dime will take me..........

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