Saturday, February 24, 2007

Getting Action

24 FEB 07

It feels good to finally have a little bankroll to play with. I took part of it to the Muckleshoot last night to see what I could do. Since they enlarged their poker room, the games are much easier to get into. I got immediate seating in a 10/20 – on a Friday night! In the past, I have waited over 2 hours on Friday or Saturday. This was a nice change.

I see a table full of regulars, including LV (and eventually her husband Ruben), my Army companions. LV says she’d dropped her paperwork to retire after 24 years. I’m just over 20, but of course I can’t retire. I’m jealous. I asked her if she was going to play poker full time. She just laughed and said she’d be looking for real employment soon. There was another military connection at the table, and actived reservist (I could tell he was in the reserves by the long sideburns and earrings). He works for Coke, but he’s being sent to Kuwait, I think with the Air National Guard. Apparently, Coke wants him to establish connections while he is over there. Good luck.

Anyway, to the action. I kept reciting Seattle John’s mantra (Good Pre-flop Discipline, Take Breaks, Patience!), and I really paid attention to everyone at the table. Within minutes, I was moved to the main game, and saw some welcome faces, including my ultimate nemesis, the guy who cracked my 3 full houses in 45 minutes (all three times with quads). I blogged about it before.

Anyway, it was a profitable night. Up 4 buy-ins, in fact. A couple hands I want to illustrate:

Hand #1: I’m UTG with pocket Aces. I’ve been playing loose, and there is a big kid on tilt at the end of the table who keeps talking about a hand I raised earlier with Q 8 that won at showdown. Of course I came in with a raise! He just wouldn’t let it go. Basically, he did all my advertising for me. In this hand, I played very straightforward, betting the whole way. 3 callers at the river and I dragged a nice pot. It’s great when they don’t believe you (provided your hand holds up).

Hand #2: I’m in the big blind with 3 5 off-suit. UTG raises and gets 5 callers before it gets to me. Of course I call, and we see a flop of A 4 6 rainbow. I check my open ender and UTG checks behind. Some MP guy bets, I call and UTG smooth calls. The turn is a 7 that completes my straight. I bet right out and UTG acts visibly startled. Again he smooth calls and we get one or two taildraggers. The river is an off suit 9, making a 5 8 the nuts. I still have the second nuts. Again I bet right out. UTG now raises! The other two fold, and I think for about 5 seconds before saying, “I guess if you have 5 8, you win. Re-raise!” He replies, “You think I have 5 8? Cap it!” I can’t call quickly enough. He proudly turns over his pocket Aces for top set. I just as quickly turn over my straight (I hate slow rollers) and watch with pleasure and he sits in stunned silence as a $400 pot is pushed in my direction.

Tonight or tomorrow night, I get to hang out with my old buddy Stefan. A new friend and poker player from work (Andy) may join us, too. If all goes well, I’ll have all their chips by sunrise. Nothing better then beating up your friends!

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