Monday, December 14, 2009


My love/hate relationship with poker has once again begun to swing towards hate. After a couple bad days at the online tables I am frustrated and dissapointed. Just when I thought I was getting my game on track, I had a few bad sessions and started playing like shit. Impatience is my enemy. Once I get a couple buy-ins down, I start to think about the money I need to make to get back to even instead of playing my cards and not taking dumb risks to try and double up.
Doyle Brunson said "You'll never be good at poker until the money doesn't matter." Although he didn't say that to me directly, it struck me very personally. I tend to think of poker as a route to money, not a fun clever game in which the score is kept with money. And while the financial risk/gain aspect is what makes poker poker (otherwise I could just as easily be addicted to Canasta, Pinochole, or Euchre), my best play is when the money matters least. To acheive this, I have taken to playing micro micro stakes to try and free my poker mind from it's fiscal shackles. Alas, while there are quite a few solid players at this level, there are also complete jokers and novices. By the time you figure out who is who, it's usually too late. Somebody else takes their money, or they leave the table. The notes on PokerStars are very helpful though, in case you run into them again. Unfortunately, I also tend to play down to the level of the stakes I'm playing at. I had more success when I played higher entry fee tourneys, because people would actually do what they were supposed to; fold when they should fold, bet a strong hand, etc. etc. Unfortunately, I don't have the disposable income to play in those tourneys for awhile.
Well, the bottom line is that the bankroll I started with a thin dime is still alive. I need to take a break and recharge the batteries. Start concentrating and playing smarter again. Every year I look back on the previous year and cringe at how bad of a poker player I was (even though at the time I thought I was pretty good). Hopefully next year I'll look back and cringe again.....

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