Author Topic: My name is VBlue and I'm a Pokerholic.  (Read 15854 times)

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VBlue

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #15 on: September 14, 2009, 20:07:07 PM »
Blog Date: 13th September 2009
NPS Live Tournament, Kendal


I hosted a 50 seat, £20/£20 double chance tournament in Kendal.  The turnout was down on our last event, with 34 players playing for a total pot of £660.

The positive is, that over the two events held this year, I have had nearly 80 different players attend.  This, of course, bodes well for our next event.

I was also one dealer short, which meant that I had to run the tournament without assistance, as well as deal a cash table towards the end for an hour.  The result was that I was not entirely happy with my own performance as Tournament Director, and I unfortunately allowed one or two stresses to get on top of me during the day.  I am my own worst critic, so probably view this worse than the players did.  In fact, a few went out of their way to complement me on an enjoyable day.

The lesson learnt is, in future, where I am short of dealers, I will offer one of the players (whom I know to be a competent dealer) a days wages to deal (which will cover their buy-in) and ensure that Hannah "Piranha" (my girlfriend) is available to help with rebuys, chip ups at the break, and other such TD duties.  As long as I learn from my mistakes and keep striving to improve, then there is nothing wrong with making a few mistakes along the way.

With our new format kicking in from our next tournament, with an increased prize pool due to reduced costs coming out of the rebuy money, we will hopefully appeal to more local players too. 
« Last Edit: September 14, 2009, 20:22:54 PM by VBlue24 »

VBlue

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #16 on: September 14, 2009, 20:15:18 PM »
...cont

I was happy to see two players coming across from Barrow-in-Furness.  With one of their players taking the tournament down, perhaps this will ignite interest from there.

I was very grateful to Wiggy The Rigger for his help supporting me, both in some criticisms (of which there will always be some) and in his help chipping up, etc.

I was absolutely beat at the end of the day and made only a very modest income.  However, we did raise £170 for a deserving local charity.  I know that in any business, it takes time to build a reputation and an income. 

I am in this for the long game and will now, mentally, take a break from these events until after I return from Las Vegas in October.

There is more to be done in growing the membership of the pub league too, but although I have already made some plans, these too will wait until post Las Vegas.

Did I mention I"m going to Las Vegas?


« Last Edit: September 14, 2009, 20:20:53 PM by VBlue24 »

Swinebag

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #17 on: September 14, 2009, 20:32:39 PM »


Did I mention I"m going to Las Vegas?



when are you going?
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Rob, you are a genius.
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You are a genius Rob  :D

VBlue

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #18 on: September 15, 2009, 10:45:12 AM »
I fly to LAX on Friday 25th September.  We drive to Las Vegas on the Saturday morning - 5 nights at The Mirage.  My girlfriend"s sister is getting married in the Valley of Fire on the Tuesday. 

As this is a family holiday (my step-daughter is 11) we will not be spending much time in the casinos.  However, I do plan to get down to Binions for some of the daily tournaments, as they run at more suitable times for me and are within my budget. 

We then drive to Williams, staying 2 nights, with a train up to the Grand Canyon for the day.  I believe that the train get"s held up by cowboys!

Then we are off to Santa Monica, where my girlfriend, step-daughter and I have rented a place for a week.  We plan to do Universal Studios, Hollywood, and Little Tokyo in L.A.  We have booked tickets to see the L.A. Lakers in Anaheim; pre-season match.

Any advice/suggestions are welcome.

VBlue

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #19 on: September 16, 2009, 11:58:27 AM »
Blog Date: 15th September, 2009
The George & Dragon - Pub Poker League


With my qualification to the Regional Final all but sealed - I now lie in second place at The Heron after a strong run in late August and a win last week - I am looking to score as much cash as I can this week and next.  This will help to inflate the Vegas fund; I think I have already mentioned the holiday  ;D

14 players lined up.  Most of the field look like certainties for Regional Final qualification.  Steggers has only played one this season, so would need a win or two.  Natalie, Dave C, and two newcomers also have some serious points to put on the board over this and the remaining two games following.  The Jackal is most at risk, if either Chicken Lloyd or Sam put an appearance in before the season ends.

With The Jackal (Gus) to my right for the second week in a row, a most favourable seat draw is mine.  Gus loses loads of chips early on - again.

I was out in Level One.  An all-in from the short-stack of 300, with 25/50 blinds, and I re-popped it to 600 with 2 earlier callers.  I get a call from Rob C.  Younger brother Dave gives another girmace as he folds.

My AK then looks v.strong on an A-Q-rag board, so I check-call a 600 bet.  With a second diamond on the turn, I check-raise all-in after Rob puts out a 1,000 bet.  Another 1,000 to call and Rob does so, flipping A8.  OWNED!  However, the diamond on the river makes a short night for me!!  I couldn"t have played it any better, so I am happy with that.

I then decided to leave the players to it.

The Great White, "fin"ished up as the winner (it was the least obvious shark comment I could think of).

Live Running Total = +£35

I will post an update on my online play over the next few days.

VBlue

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #20 on: September 21, 2009, 10:27:35 AM »
Blog Date: 17th September, 2009
The Heron - Pub Poker League


Stop Press: Heron Thursday Night"d Crew Take up Sports!

With our numbers down to only 15, from a high of 27 only a few weeks ago, I ask Faz where the regulars are spending their Thursday nights now.

With Knocker and Gav both working, Rex at kick-boxing and Sean playing football, I am gravely concerned about this change in lifestyle.  It seems to me that their priorities are all wrong.  Then, I am forgetting that I am a pokerholic.

I arrive late, having closed up the shop in Windermere, and with Everton vs AEK Athens on T.V. I go into live multi-table mode.  The really annoying thing is that I can see the T.V. from where I am sitting, but only through a block glass partition, resulting in watching the match with a kind of fly-vision.

After legging it between T.V. and peeling a look at my hole cards, and folding them, I decide to give up on the match with 2 early goals putting Everton in control.

Card-dead, pretty much, until the final hand before the break.  I pick up AQ (could have been AJ) UTG, with about 2,400 chips at 100/200 and open for 650.  The Kid thinks I am at it and puts me all-in from late position with 99.  I call and fail to hit.  Again, the right play and I pretty much knew that my raise looked like an early position steal, with the break already being called before I saw my hole cards and making my bet. 

The Kid goes on to win; a first win for the season at this venue, following on from a run of v.good results at The George & Dragon.

Live Running Toal = +£30

Online results to date will follow when I get a spare minute at home to run through them.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2009, 10:30:39 AM by VBlue24 »

VBlue

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #21 on: September 23, 2009, 18:28:51 PM »
Blog Date: 22nd September
The George & Dragon - Pub Poker League


To cut a long story short, I tried to steal the blinds from the SB and got called by 4 players.  Check-fold.

With about 2,200 chips I raise to 600 at 100/200 with AQ and the break approaching.  I get put all-in and immediately put my opponent on AK.  I know these guys are loose though and factor in pocket pairs I have over-cards to and call.  I run into AK and am out in 9th.

Well, my instincts are definitely proving to be reliable.  I will have to cut down on the second guessing that creeps in occassionaly.   I had fold equity, but I was playing 4-handed and blinds were coming round, so perhaps it was still the right move, as Rob confirmed he probably would have shoved with a mid-range pocket pair too.

Live Running Total = +25

I am now only two days away from a holiday of a lifetime....and I am starting to burst at the seams.

I have big, big plans for when I return and will be online to share them with you.


VBlue

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #22 on: October 16, 2009, 17:43:33 PM »
16th October, 2009.

Re-ee-wind, "Bo-selecta"

Grab your mental fishing rod and cast your mind back to when you first fell in love/hate with poker. 

The following sequence should be imagined with a blurry border, to indicate recalled memories:

I had played a little poker with my Dad and my brother, plastic toothpicks or pistachio nut shells were often used as currency in games.  We played on holiday; sat on the balcony of an apartment in Corfu aged 8 being one particular memory.

The game was introduced to me as brag or variant thereof.  I had no understanding of how the betting worked, but knew the hand rankings.  I enjoyed the game and played occasionally...

Fast forward to Manchester 2002 and Season Five of Late Night Poker.  Jac Arama, The Hendon Mob, Phil Hellmuth.  I shared a house with a Physics PhD student, who was taking a year out to play online poker.  We arranged home games and assigned our own nicknames.  Tom was "The Swan"; often caught swan-necking a look at your holecards, despite his continued denial.  "The Count", Rob was an accountant for a private firm, but had to count all his bets out in single chip denominations - I call your 200, that"s 10 (ha-ha-ha), 20 (ha-ha-ha), 30 (ha-ha-hah), 40 (ha-ha-ha)!

Saturday afternoons were then spent at an internet cafe in Withington, playing at pokerroom.com.  My biggest single win being a $150 win at a $30 sng.  I remeber my hands shaking from the adrenaline.

The next few years were spent playing sporadically online, mainly proving to be a break-even player.  My biggest cash out was $600 from a $50 deposit, which I took to Barcelona for my 30th birthday.  This was almost exclusively from playing $5 sngs, although I did not keep a record of no. of games played.  Biggest MTT wins in this time were in the region of $350 with a 9th place in a 700-odd runner tournament.

Following the appearance of a national pub poker league owner on Dragon"s Den, I got into the pub poker scene, hosting a weekly game, which has now been running for 2 years.  I quickly realised that I was the best player at the game, and after some early fancy play syndrome, I found the antidote and began to take a good share of the wins and cashes.

I now had an appetitie for bigger live games and got onto google, looking for any local action.  I made contact with a local poker club and played at an event they held in W.Cumbria; out first hand after the rebuy period closed, with KK into AA.

Later that year, I began to run events for them, alongside my continued pub poker events.  More on this in a later post...

About 12 months ago, our poker club announced their annual Leaving for Las Vegas competition, with a 5 tournament league offering a one week holiday to the WSOP 2009 with $1,500 in buy-ins, flights and accomodation at The Bellagio.  The Piranha and I decided to play and took a couple of mates. 

With 76 runners, I took down the opening event and covered the cost of the next four tournaments with the 1st place cash prize of £360.  I then put in two reasonable results in the following tournaments to stay in the top 2 overall, with 2 guaranteed main prizes!

A new job then put me out of the 4th event, with a proxy player nominated and a very respectable finish kept me in 2nd place overall with 1 to play.

Heart-break was to follow.  With something like 15 points separating me from the player two places behind me and my nearest rival out, I fell in 40th place.  The 4th and 5th placed players made the final table and overtook me in the league table and my WSOP dream was over, bar a 1/50 shot at a wildcard.

Update to present day to follow...


VBlue

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Re: I am VBlue and I'm a pokerholic.
« Reply #23 on: March 19, 2011, 14:25:13 PM »
After following the APAT for a couple of years now, but yet to play any of the main live or online Championships, due mainly to bankroll, I have now signed up as captain of Team Carlisle for the upcoming Online National League.

I"ve just read back over my previous blogs and wow, some of the poker chat is weird.  Most of what I had been playing was just so standard.

I have started a new blog, off site, following a thread I had going on a UK poker forum.  I would like to link you to that now and ask for APAT members interested in my story to follow.

I will be following some of the others on here myself.

I hope to provide an interesting and entertaining read; my game has moved on, but I can"t guarantee that the attempts at humour have  :).

To get you up-to-date my story really re-starts here:

For the last three months, I have been restructuring my finances (debt), holidaying in Ibiza, re-discovering a social life (offline life brag), and taking care of some other personals.

Over that time I have dabbled in a little v.low stakes online poker and a few pub games, but nothing serious. Now I"ve got myself straight and have money to reload. I now want to go about my poker in a more structured manner and have noted fellow Black Belt Poker disciples, going about their game in a similar manner.

Revisiting sitandgoplanet.com before my exodus, I took up their free four part "blueprint guide" to low-stakes STTs, and so I began stripping my game down and taking the approach as a beginner would, or possibly should. I finished up four-tabling the low stakes STTs on BBP. The result? I did my entire bankroll for the first time since I joined up last year at launch. More importantly, the cause? For those who remember, or can at least picture this, several years ago on TV"s Celebrity Fit Club, in the opening episode, BDO Darts Champion, Andy "The Viking" Fordham, took up the 100m to test his fitness. He walked about 30m before an ambulance had to be called, following his collapse on the track. I ran that good.

I also continued to play outside BRM when my roll got hit and my ROI plunged into the icy depths of sustained minus figures for the first time. I was prepared to go bust rather than play micro levels, as I believe it would have taken too long to rebuild my roll playing so low.

During this time, I worked through the blueprint and began using SNG Wizard (30 day free trial) to sharpen my ICM skills. I have now. All-in-all I believe that my bubble play is correct, despite not using the differing ranges that opponents may be playing. This is something that I will add to my game as I take notes on opponents.

Briefly, I have begun a return to the four part blueprint to recover some sections and to ensure that my game has not slipped. I have already noted one or two points that I have lost sight of when making decisions on hands.

I have also purchased Collin Moshman"s book, after someone posted their surprise that I had not already devoured, slept with, and photo-memorised the entire content of.

I have shopped around a little and I"ve found that at low stakes the rakeback on offer at the likes of Titan (ipoker) and Stars does not compare favourably with achieving and maintaining Orange Belt status with online poker"s highest kicking site, Black Belt Poker. My grind will continue on their ipoker skin and I plan to use my belt points wisely in the Dojo Sessions provided by the Black Belt Poker mentors, although I may also need a new cap to replace the one I threw in the air when out clubbing in Blackpool the other week (well, it was a tune)!

I have broken down the hours required multi-tabling to earn and sustain Orange Belt status, taking up where I left off with 4 tabling at the $5 STTs - about 10-11 hours per week.

I am going to ensure I earn my 10% reduction for forum activity, so together with updates to this unofficial blog, I will be posting and commenting on others hand dilemmas on the Black Belt Poker forum.

I plan to also play some tournaments away from the STT grind, looking for value in table selection. My local poker club has a weekly game where I think I can have a strong run in 2011, with a goal of winning the Online Player of the Year trophy and cash prize. The value increases due to the monthly $500 freeroll offered to qualifying players. Similarly, I will be returning to the Amateur Poker Association Tour for their online national league game, determined to increase the Carlisle club weekly player numbers to help us climb the league structure and win some added live seats.

I will also be using one or two other sites to qualify for some weekly/monthly freerolls, bonuses, and guaranteed tourneys with decent overlays. I believe that the competition is soft on this site and the bonuses are good for low stakes MTT players.

To further develop my game, identifying opponents tendencies through structured note taking will be built into my playing sessions, noting good ICM players and other pertinent plays and styles.

To bring me right into 2011 and the age of video training, I have requested a Deuces Cracked subscription from Santa so I can see what they have to offer and how I can use it to improve my game.

Having a goal is of huge importance when trying to achieve anything, preventing inertia and complacency of results.

My target is currently to achieve a 10% Return On Investment playing 250 STTs in December, based on four-tabling. I have not yet targeted an hourly income, but I feel like ?10 is where I would like to get to in the fairly immediate future. I have also targeted to increase to six and eight tables by the end of the month and climb the buy-in levels commensurate with a hopefully rapidly inflating bankroll

With $200 deposited on Thursday night and a short 1 hour session under my Yellow Belt I feel like now is a better time than ever to really get what I want from poker.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 18:53:22 PM by VBlue »

Chipaccrual

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Re: My name is VBlue and I'm a Pokerholic.
« Reply #24 on: March 19, 2011, 14:30:41 PM »
Good luck with this Mark.  Let"s get those Carlisle number up.   :D

VBlue

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Re: My name is VBlue and I'm a Pokerholic.
« Reply #25 on: March 25, 2011, 13:32:32 PM »
Still bringing my linked blog up to date for anyone at APAT who is interested in following my online exploits.

This would particularly appeal to STT players, novices looking to improve their game, low-stakes MTT players, anyone interested in Black Belt Poker and their online offering, and anyone just interested in what I hope proves to be and entertaining and informative read.

I have always been fairly good at making plans; I haven"t always been as good at seeing them through, so they "go oft awry".

December contained several distractions, including the festivities of the season. Poker took a back seat in favour of spending some time with the family and enjoying a night or two "socialising with friends" as some idiots cite under Hobbies and Interests in their CVs or job applications. Safe to say that I have still not got my insurance to pay out on the iphone I lost sometime after dancing with a Christmas tree and playing air-guitar with a ketchup and a mustard bottle in Yates" Wine Lodge. My girlfriend may see it as retribution for the embarrassment she has had to get used to over the years.

I did get back on track in January though and managed to almost complete my monthly target of 250 STTs. However, results have not been anything to brag about and you won"t see them in the BBV section of any poker forums. I guess it is mainly down to variance, as my run last year of losing 50/50s, 60/40s, 70/30s, and even 80/20s does not seem to measure in my favour as the ratios would suggest they should.

I did have a little run, which was helped when I incorrectly recorded some results and could not work out why my ipoker account was so much lower than my results showed on my tracker. A manual recount showed that ipoker were right and I was wrong. My biggest losses have come over the last 63 games, where I have dropped about $76. After getting back to break-even at just under 900 STTs since I started playing on BlackBelt Poker"s ipoker skin, I am now showing a slight loss at just over that number of games.

I have increased to 6 tabling just recently and do not feel like this has had a negative effect on my game and most of the time I am getting my money in good and either running into a monster, or sucking out.

I will continue to work with the SnG Wizard software package to constantly refine and hone my ICM game. I am tentatively starting to take notes now on other players so I can look for ways to exploit them in late stage and bubble play and I feel that, especially against regs, this is an area I want to concentrate more on and ensure that the notes I do take are useful. I am also recording ICM findings in an easy reference spreadsheet, looking at specific situations where I am not certain of the "correct" play. When using SnG Wizard, I think it very important to remember its limitations and not to rely on it as a sole solution to your late stage and bubble problems. When you are confident in the knowledge of what an ICM calculator cannot do for you, you are more able to find the answers it can give you.

Returning to some previous strategy material, I am constantly referring back to the original source and my notes to ensure that I am always playing as optimal a game as possible. To round this off I have made a learning plan, so I can focus on areas for improvement and the material or learning sources I wish to use.

Finally, I have also been looking at adding in some MTTs and I previously mentioned one or two regular games that I want to play more when I am available. I have now started to compile a list of the daily schedules for ipoker and a couple of other sites and look at their weekly tournaments, bonuses, challenges, and special promotions.

Just before posting this month"s blog, I wanted to add that I took down a $1k GP F/O this afternoon on ipoker for $270. BBP London Live II buy-in is $275. Co-incidence?
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 18:54:02 PM by VBlue »

VBlue

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Re: My name is VBlue and I'm a Pokerholic.
« Reply #26 on: March 26, 2011, 17:19:39 PM »
.....or nobody?  Any love for my blog would be greatly welcomed.

Had Aesop been around today, no doubt under the monickor "_Fabulist1_" he would undoubtedly be ensuring that he feeds the goose often, lest the golden eggs stop producing.

With a plethora of learning and training medium, he who only focuses on table hours and neglects stepping back to work "on his business" will be surpassed by those who nurture their long-term propects by investing time and effort into staying one-step ahead of the field.

February"s online exploits saw me achieve two main goals; Orange Belt status with Black Belt Poker - entitling me to enter the Orange Belt freeroll (prize of a seat at a future live poker academy) in March and earn belt points at an increased rate throughout the coming month to enable me to maintain my status more easily, and doubling my 2011 starter bankroll from $200 over approximately 400 x $5 STTs - an ROI of close to 10%.

I also decided to mix in some afternoon low-stakes MTTs using a $100 deposit bonus from one of the most well-stocked online fisheries known to online poker players. 3 x 2nd place finishes saw me add another $400 to my win last month.

With the Goose starting to produce, my tail feathers are up and all I want to do is continue on the crest of the wave of improved results. However, to ensure that I do not get carried away, I will continue to pay attention to the long term.

Some reading on the Black Belt site - Gavin Hall"s "MTTPokerKa" series and two linked articles, Oliver Schmidtman"s "Introduction to Equity Calculations", and Kevin Williams" review of Deuces Cracked video "App Attack, Episode 7 - SnG Wiz" proved to be a good grounding in subjects which I had identified.

Using a tried and tested method, I am now prioritising my poker month. Last month, belt points earned on BBP enabled me to participate in one of the weekly poker Dojo sessions, hosted by Kevin Williams and Jamie Burland. I haven"t done the calculation exactly, but the "cost" in rakeback amounts to an extremely good value deal to spend an hour or two talking with these poker pros.

In March, I will be using more spending points to subscribe to Deuces Cracked and take-in some of their video training to work on further parts of my game.

Finally, something I am hugely keen on and have recently raised on the BPP forum, is what I begrudgingly call the "buddy sessions" or are known also as the "sweat sessions". To be able to hook up and chat poker, is highest on my priority list and I hope to develop one or two partnerships with BBP players and some local to me.

Work done for my local poker club is being repaid this month in the form of a complimentary seat at the monthly £50 deepstack. With 60-70 players expected on Sunday I could do with a good cash to fund me playing more of these throughout the year - I reckon that the West Cumbrian players" geese are well and truly cooked.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 18:54:54 PM by VBlue »

VBlue

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Re: My name is VBlue and I'm a Pokerholic.
« Reply #27 on: March 26, 2011, 17:20:58 PM »
and to bring this year"s up-to-date, my trip to the Wild West to play live:

A mid-month addition to my blog this week to share my adventures from a weekend in the Wild West....of Cumbria.

The journey from Kendal to Hensingham, nr Whitehaven, is not one for the faint-hearted. I arrive early to pick up Kostas (or Gus to most) looking typically hungover and going for what I can best describe as the "Nightcrawler" look - long overcoat, stubble, pasty, - rough as toast.

We spend the next two hours, after an unintentional diversion when I missed a turn off the M6, discussing tournament play - including hand selection, range, position, re-stealing, set-mining, M, structure, and exploiting opponents. Gus shows a good understanding, offers some thoughts of his own, and we arrive at 1:30pm ready for the tournament ahead.

To my delight, our dealer is delayed by an accident and I am asked to take her place, which gladly only lasts four or five hands. I settle down with my 10k stack and begin to cultivate my image as the self-titled "tightest player in Cumbria", until the Real Cumbrians take offence to Kendal"s claim to their County lines and I become "the tightest player in Westmorland".

Two hands later and the not-unexpected cry of "All-in" comes from a man who I will only name by his well-earned nickname, which I have already given you. If you gave some people a million chips with a 5/10 Level One and a two hour clock...

I pick up a few pots early on and grow my stack to 12k. With a young ipod wearing, Liverpool shirted, early raiser and two callers, I elect to call the button with KQ. Flop comes J9s7s, and our pre-flop Kopite leads for a third-pot bet with one caller, so I call again. The Q turn sees another lead for a similar size bet and I follow my flop thinking and make a 2.5x raise after the man behind me folds. Our friend from across the park takes some time to make the call. The Js river means I know I"m losing and fold to his river bet to be shown the boat.

Gus has decided to take onboard almost none of our chat, with the main purpose to help him cultivate his naturally super-aggo play with some actual reasoning to his actions, and steams up to 30k and then all the way back down again. Gus, Gus, Gus!

Down to 7.5k and with a promise to return for my chips I am delighted to be seated two to the left of "All-In". The players I leave behind at my opening table all sigh and bemoan my luck in my new position. With blinds at 100/200 before the first break looms, and an early raise from the big-stack, "All-in" makes it 3k to go. I shove and get two callers with AQ and 99. The K on the flop sees me on 22k. My Aces in the last hand just add the blinds.

Our chip leader, who having flopped a set of threes and geting paid off on turn and river bets by "All-in" with his paired deuce, secures a $50 bonus from our online sponsor, with further added money for first out and the winner.

Hand of the opening session was undoubtedly involving "All-in" again. I missed the action, but saw the face of one of his many victims of the day, who then had to go and sit in his car for ten minutes to take in what had happened. Thankfully we didn"t find him with the hosepipe in through the window! Our victim had got it in on the flop to be called with an unpaired 23, no draws. The turn and river delivered running deuces and wild celebration; chants of "We are the Champions" ensued from "All-in".

Post break, I picked up a pot three-betting some old school live donk (I jest) with AJs and other than that don"t remember too much else other than a loose UTG raise with small pocket pair that I folded on the flop. Two hands where I could have three bet against "All-in" with hands which would normally be outside my range would have delivered both a double-up and treble-up had I played a higher variance style and would have seen me breach 100k chips at 2k/4k level. My more cautious approach, however, meant that I had to fold a multitude of rags and rag-Aces in the face of earlier action as my M dwindled.

With the second break looming, "All-in" provides further hysterics when he berates a young lad to his left, who looked like he had just been told his dog had died, when facing not only a decision for his tournament life, but also a barrage of "I"ve no respect for you" and other banterage. He eventually folded his paired A weak-kicker, on a dry board, and "All-in" delighted in showing his paired K with more crys of victory sounding across the room.

With my returning stack now hitting 14 BBs and then down to 7BB, I called the short stacks 4 BB shove with my Q4 to see 62 and lose to the paired 2. My last 4 BBs get in against Q8 and lose to the paired 8.

The final half-hour in Whitehaven provided my final entertainment for the evening - I had a flat battery. Firstly, I employed two piss-heads to help me push the car across the carpark, narrowly avoiding rolling it straight into not one, but two vehicles. I then needed some light shining so I could see both bonnets, to connect jump leads. Fair play to the commitment of Lammy, who after I asked him to help out, replied "I have no lights". "Not a torch", I said, "your headlights". "I have no headlights either". I jabbed his ribs, cottoning on to his rouse and waited outside. When his car rolled past with no lights on and they told me they were driving 30-odd miles to Carlisle without them and disappeared half way up the road; Gus and I shared an incredulous look. They returned with headlights beaming. When you just want to get home (1.5 hours away) you can rely on poker players to seize the opportunity to make your evening more painful ;)

With jump leads unsuccessful, I was finally towed down the hill, only after forgetting to set off in neutral before sticking it in 2nd gear, and then forgetting to turn my key and thus locking the steering. A local took pity (more likely just thought I was a complete dildo) and jumped in and got my car started.

Thanks go the Cavalry, and to whoever was stood at the gated entrance and then spectacularly fell into the hedge letting out a fantastic drunken groan as they struggled to the feet, as I continued to ponder my own predicament: you know who you are; although possibly not actually.

With wolves howling at the moon and tumbleweeds rolling through the streets on the journey home, thank God I never stalled the van. Then I really would have found out how wild it is out West.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 18:55:28 PM by VBlue »

VBlue

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Re: My name is VBlue and I'm a Pokerholic.
« Reply #28 on: March 31, 2011, 13:32:27 PM »
Things turn sour in the STT grind, and dilemnas pour from the heavens:

March has been a four-letter expletive of a month.

The STT grind has become much less enjoyable, with a 30 BI downswing currently a work still in progress. I decided that, upon doubling my reload bankroll to $400, that I would step-up to the $10 plate and 4-6 table in a bid to double up again. After noticing a single turbo table registering at any one time on ipoker during my evening playing-time slot I decided to seek out a rival site, look for a good deposit bonus, focus on the stock-filled fishing holes rather than the bigger brands, and continue in a nice upward curve.

Party seemed to be a good place to down-rod, so I found a 100% match bonus and calculated that in the required period I would be able to clear around $300-$350 worth of that bonus. Unfortunately, it seems that I then made a mistake and got caught between two bonus offers, ending up using a code which gave me $25 in my account from day one, with another $25 to follow from points earned, with a one month subscription to UK Poker News"s video training site - which would be a nice benefit had I not just bought a one month subscription to Decues Cracked with a token through belt points earned from Black Belt Poker.

I then proceeded to smash my way through the typical, though none-the-less sickening, STT downswing, made only more bearable by Kevin Williams sharing some results he had over 2k games on Stars with those who took his excellent Dojo session, entitled "Winning STTs One Hand at a Time". For those who haven"t and are playing their poker on Black Belt Poker"s skin, I highly recommend using some of your points to access one of these live skype sessions. Kevin in particular is first-class in his delivery, subject knowledge, and providing answers to questions. The main point was that a 50BI downswing over a larger winning sample of games is not to be unexpected.

Dilemnas then began to present themselves to me in spades. Would I continue to play the $10 games to try and access my bonus (at this stage I had not discovered my bonus code error) and ride out the downswing, as dropping to the $5 games on Party is not an option with their rake at that level being double that of ipoker"s? Would I ignore my lost bonus opportunity and take my roll back to Black Belt, qualify for Orange belt status again, and spin up again from the $5 levels and manage my STT bankroll as I should be? Or, would I use some of my MTT winnings to give my STT roll a boost, ride out the downswing, and with continued work on my game through ICM analysis have the heart to continue with my original plan for 2011 and put 3k STTs on the board?

Sometimes the best advice is the most simple; Sam Razavi gave this line in response to a query I raised on the Black Belt forum boards "My advice in general would be to find the game that you make most money at and focus your efforts on that. GL" Food for thought indeed, but of course the paradox is that to win at STTs you have to be prepared to lose, on occassions at least as much as 50 BIs.

The one thing that I think the Dojo session confirmed is that since this time last year the work I have put in away from the tabels and the game-time I have put in at the tables has gained me a good understanding of ICM and the low-level STT games. The focus should always be on volume first, rather than targetting results or income. As long as I continue to play well and refine my ICM game there is definitely money to be made, but with a continuing set of positive results at the low-stakes MTTs and a few near misses at adding to my win in the $1k GP I am considering switching to these and away from the STT grind, although I have to consider I am probably on the good side of variance over my small sample size.

To finish the month off I played the Orange belt freeroll last night on Black Belt; two seats available, worth £150 each, at an Academy day at London"s Victoria Casino and an opportunity to finally meet some of the team and fellow players. I raised a lot of pots early and took them down, in the main unchallenged, to slowly grow my stack and take up 2nd spot. With only sixteen players, includign four sit-outs, I started to think about winning a seat. When I found a flush draw with an over-card to the flop and doubled-up when putting my opponent all-in I held the chip lead and I regained it in time for the 2nd break. However, after missing an earlier similar spot, I finally fell in 5th place when getting it in with A9 vs an utg raise with K9from the loosest player at the tournament and seeing two kings hit the board.

My volume has suffered throughout March, probably due to my downswing and not feeling comfortable playing on Party (it"s hard to settle in when you"re just losing) and I need to clear my mind, re-focus my efforts, make some decisions after dwelling on them sufficiently, and kick-start things back into action. A curve-ball has just been thrown my way in the last few days, but I"ll discuss that in a future blog.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 18:55:57 PM by VBlue »

Paulie_D

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Re: My name is VBlue and I'm a Pokerholic.
« Reply #29 on: March 31, 2011, 14:16:21 PM »


.....or nobody?  Any love for my blog would be greatly welcomed.



I confess I have read it but you might like to consider copying the content of each post to here rather than just linking.

I know that"s what I do.
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