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Daniel - Poker Journal

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Grinding it out in the $2000-$4000 game

31 Mar 2005

I had a couple good days of getting things done around the house. I watched a ton of Tivo, played tons of NBA Showtime, NFL Blitz, and broke a record or two at the Golden Tee.

I've also been reading a book by one of my favorite authors Michael Moore called, "Dude, Where's my Country?" The book is full of stuff I already knew as well as a few other nuggets I wasn't aware of.

So after watching the WPT episode where Carlos Mortenson played masterfully I headed down to the Bellagio to play some poker. I got there right at 9:30pm as we’d planned on meeting there around that time. It was a short field which suited me just fine. Playing short handed is so much more fun since you get to play like, every hand!

It was four of us playing the entire session:

Seat 1: Lee Salem
Seat 2: Me
Seat 3: Chau Giang
Seat 4: Eli Elezra

We decided on a limit, $2000-$4000 and then decided on the mix: Hold'em, Omaha H/L, Stud, Stud H/L, and 2-7 triple draw. Right off the bat I lot a few pots and was playing from behind.

I think at my lowest point I was stuck about $100,000. A really fun hand queued my comeback:

The game was limit hold'em and I raised it up with 2-2. Chau re-raised to $6000, and Eli raised again to $8000. I called and there was now $26,000 sitting in the middle.

The flop came 2d 3d 2c. No seriously, the flop came 2d 3d 2c! I flopped quads and it looked like I might win a big one here. Eli bet out and I just called as did Chau.

The turn came the 10h and Eli bet out again. I thought I'd keep Chau in if possible, and if Eli had a big pair as he was representing I could always raise him on the river. I called, but Chau mucked his hand.

The river came a King and Eli bet out once again. I raised to $8000, Eli re-raised to $12,000, I re-raised to $16,000, Eli raised to $20,000, and I re-raised to $24,000.

As Eli went to make the final call I noticed that his cards looked like little boats. He seemed frustrated by the hand and the ripped up cards took the brunt of his wrath. I didn't have to see Eli's hand to know that he obviously hit his "best card" and made kings full on the river.

So while that got me back on the right track I was pretty bored most of the session. That seems nuts since I didn't fold a hand for like 45 minutes straight. Ok well I folded two hands but you get the picture.

Playing super high limits can really mess with your head. After playing in the $4000-$8000 mixed game with $100,000 capped pots, this $2000-$4000 game, which is a huge game, seemed like penny ante poker to me.

Most high limit players will tell you, "If it doesn't hurt when you lose, it's no fun." That's pretty sick I guess, but there is a lot of truth to it.

So to kill time I entertained myself in other ways. A gentleman at the table behind us dropped both his wallet and some buffet comps and they were laying behind his chair.

I'd never seen the guy before but thought it would be fun to play a little prank on him. I grabbed the wallet and the comps without him noticing then sat down in the open seat at his table. "Seat open guys?" I said as I flashed my new wallet.

Once I got the gentlemen’s attention he looked at the wallet and then started patting his pockets frantically. He was totally freaked out looking left, looking right, and then finally looking behind him.

Eventually I let him in on the joke and handed him his wallet back. He was a real good sport about it. Good thing for him it was me who found the wallet otherwise he may not have been so lucky.

Later David Sklansky dropped by the game to say hello and chit chat for a while. That dude cracks me up. He pointed out that I was wrong about Lee Salem reading his books. In a post in the forum I'd said that I didn't think Lee had read Sklansky's work. I stand corrected. Apparently Lee is a fan of Davids writing and has read several of his books.

For all the poking and jabbing that goes on with David and I, I genuinely like the guy. We disagree on a ton of stuff, but that doesn't make me think any less of him as a man... it just makes me believe that I could whup his butt at the poker table! :-)

Still bored, I decided to pick on the security guards that were protecting our game. I noticed that they were being very aggressive when people would stand by the rail hoping to watch the action at our table. This one lady was like a pit bull. If someone was standing there for 1/3 of a second she was on him, "I'm sorry sir, but you can't stand there. Keep it moving." Spectator after spectator was shooed away by Miss. Pit bull.

So, in between the action I stood up from my chair, walked around the table and stood right where she'd been moving people away from our game. I watched the action intently, and sure enough here came the watchdog, "I'm sorry sir you can't stand there."

Now I was wearing a red Oakley hat and a lime green sweatshirt. You'd think she'd recognize me! "Is it ok if I sit there?" I asked as I pointed to the empty seat in the game where I had about $200,000 in chips.

"No. No sir you can't sit there. Move it along." The guys in the game were cracking up. Finally they barked back at Miss. Pit bull, "Hey we need that guy. The game will break without him!"

Finally she realized that I was messing with her and she got a good laugh out of it. I sat back down and finished out the rest of the session half heartedly.

The game broke up at 3:00am, and after 5.5 hours I booked a $25,300 winner. Not a bad score, especially considering the fact that I didn't run very well during the session and that I didn't put in my best effort.

Tomorrow I have a few errands I need to run before heading to Toronto late at night.


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