I think you had one of the more unique views in poker. You were very much on the cusp of the hsmtt world, correct me if im wrong here. For what I know you got to be involved in daily conversations with some of the games best up and coming (if not already there) online poker players. Yet at the same time like I said, you didnt get the same oppurtunities to play at the highest levels online.
Many people would and should be jealous and really take your post and read it more then once..
As for the post I quoted, people really need to understand what those badges mean..Jason touches on it but basically a 1M+ badge doesnt always mean huge profit. It does at the very least mean an absurd amount of time and energy spent playing this game. I don't know anyone who hasnt conceded that this simply "sucks", I think me and Appst said that word a few times..
A lot of lives were changed, some for the better. I will say this though, if you still get to play online don't take it for granted. Give it everything you have and play as much as you can while you still can.
That might be the one thing that keeps me up at night the most.
Who really knows if say I played more, studied more , not 4 bet this spot or that , would I still be sitting here working a full time job that I always despised. The unknown will always always haunt me
Reason: I suck at grammar..oi
nick and jakes posts should be must read material when the world of online poker is analyzed in universities down the road- both touch on some issues that are really only learned with time, perspective and maturity and i commend them for contributing
Thanks Appst for a great post and thanks Rock for the longest bad beat post ever (excluding threevens bad beats thread). I will go ahead and post my story/advice.
I quit my real job in late 2010 to play online full time. I had finally got the hang of mass multi tabling tourneys and was doing quite well. I made 10k+ profit in each of the 1st 3 months of 2011 leading up to BF without playing a tourney with a buyin higher than $55. BF hit me hard. I had 32k+ online between stars, FTP, and UB...but only had 1k in my bank account. I panicked and sold my Camaro and my motorcycle to have some money until I figured out what to do.
I decided to not move overseas because my gf was still in college and I wanted her to stay in school. We moved to New Orleans so I could play live cash. The first month was great. I profitted over 20k playing 2/5nl. After that I got bored. The play was so slow compared to online. I started playing every hand a was trying to bluff everybody. Over the next few months I slowly lost most of those profits and decided that I didn't want to play live for a living so I moved back to Texas with my gf to work a real job until online poker comes back to the states.
I was lucky to have a degree and some experience so I got a job quickly doing something similar to what I was doing before I quit to play online full time. I make 50k a year. My job is easy, no stress, my boss is nice and I make more than most of my friends who are also a few years out of college.
Here is the problem. I have to wake up at 5:30 everyday. I have to be at work for 9 hours 5 days a week. I don't get to choose the days I wanna work. There is not much room for growth here. I daydream every single day about playing online, winning tournaments, and being happy like I was. I feel like an moron for playing like an idiot in new orleans and taking for granted how easy I had it.
Watching all the legislation and seeing how slowly everything is moving, I think it will be quite awhile before online poker is legalized and worth playing. Probably only certain states will be allowed to play at first so there won't be enough players and guarantees for awhile to make it worth playing. The longer it takes FTP to make a deal, the less likely I think our chances are of getting repaid. If by some miracle FTP pays out, I will snap move to Costa Rica or Canada to play online.
My advice; don't move back and work a real job. Take some time off to rest your mind. If you're anything like me, you will regret giving up on your dream. Good luck with your decision OP.
Cliffs: awesome at poker, sucks at life
I felt compelled to post in this thread, despite the fact that I really dont read P5s much anymore. I know I'm not really known or relevant but here goes....
I started playing online poker seriously while I was attending law school in Chicago. For the first year I played I was a slightly losing player. In year 2 I was consistently beating midstakes. At some point a friend of a friend put me in touch with Govshark2 and we started a backing arrangement for HSMTTs. I crushed them for awhile, chopping a sunday 100r and winning the Mulligan etc. Then I went on a downswing and Govshark had to drop me. At that point, though, I had enough of a roll to play for myself. I was making consistent money and I was happy. I won a few LAPT packages on stars-- playing in those tournaments and traveling to South America was fun, despite the fact that I bricked them all.
But despite the fact that I had a comfortable roll, poker was taking a huge toll on my life. Classmates in law school viewed me as "the poker guy," and gradually I fell out of touch with them. By my final year it seemed like I had neglected those friendships to the point that they were irrevocably broken. When I finally graduated, I moved to NYC and started dating an ex from college. I treated her like shit because I was too absorbed in poker. There was always some excuse-- FTOPS, WCOOPS, re entries, sundays, etc. I had deferred my start date at my law firm until March so I had a few months to JUST play poker. I had been looking forward to it but I felt like such a gross degen sitting in my apartment every day in front of a computer screen. I felt like I was wasting my potential, that the opportunity cost for playing poker was way too high to justify the career choice.
In September of that year I won a WCOOP for 180k. I did a video of it for P5s training if you're interested. It was pretty crazy how reckless and insane I was, I had just become so desensitized to money that I didn't care. I guess that was one of the things that made me successful, but it's still bizarre looking back on the hh. I started taking shots in very high stakes NYC cash games and went on a gross downswing. The losses hurt so much more than the wins felt good. Whenever I lost a pot of $10k or more I would feel sick to my stomach. The people I was playing with at the time were annoying degens. guys in their 30s and 40s who were complete life burnouts. I remember thinking to myself that I didn't want to end up like them, that if I played poker full time I might be one of those guys. It scared me.
Then I started work in March of 2010. I was fresh out of law school and being paid significantly more than what I was worth to the firm at the time. I felt incredibly fortunate to have the opportunity, it was great to use my brain and learn how to become a better attorney. I felt more plugged into the city and the world around me. I started reading the newspaper regularly again. I started reading the New Yorker and New York Magazine again. I coached a high school mock trial team from the Bronx as a pro bono project. I felt like a real person again, I was no longer some lonely ghost sitting in my boxer shorts all day clicking buttons on my laptop. In an incredible stroke of luck, I decided to withdraw 95% of my online roll because I feared that Obama would raise taxes and I wanted to pay my share before my rate went up. so luckily BF didn't hit me hard at all. I found a good game to play in NYC, and now poker is just a hobby. I play every Thursday in a 10/25 game with friendly middle-aged guys who don't take themselves too seriously.
I know I am atypical. I know that lots of you dont' have good jobs to fall back on (Wandigo's story is particularly upsetting to me, I remember playing with him a lot and I respected his game). I know we all love the thrill of making a final table, the lack of defined schedule, the absence of superiors to whom we must report. I get it. I bill my time in 6 minute increments now and I recognize the benefits that the poker lifestyle afforded me. BUT I am sooooo much happier now than I was a few years ago, and it's really not even close. I feel like my life has a purpose again. I will always love poker, it's not going anywhere and it will always be a part of my life. But I strongly disagree with those who think that sitting around all day in front of a computer is the way to maximize lifetime ev in terms of either happiness or money. It makes me sad when I see poker friends smoking weed all day and button-clicking their lives away, some of them are so smart and have so much potential. Flame me if you want, I don't really care. I couldn't see any of this when I played every day, my outlook was completely myopic I was beyond biased. But take it from me, there is more out there. Can you imagine what you could accomplish if you transferred your poker energy into something more productive for your professional life? Stay hungry.
It makes me sad when I see poker friends smoking weed all day and button-clicking their lives away, some of them are so smart and have so much potential. Flame me if you want, I don't really care. I couldn't see any of this when I played every day, my outlook was completely myopic I was beyond biased. But take it from me, there is more out there. Can you imagine what you could accomplish if you transferred your poker energy into something more productive for your professional life? Stay hungry.
Some good stories itt, I guess ill share a condensed version of mine. I dropped out of school in the winter of 07 and have been playing for a living ever since. Had my ups and downs like everyone. Met some great people though poker, had some of the best experiences of my life from poker. Have 1 wsop final table which was prob the most fun actually playing poker ever.
Fast forward to black friday, my girlfriend was about 4 months pregnant, so I obviously wasn't moving anywhere. I have always been a saver for the most part. I eat out often, bought myself a new car in 09, buy my gf nice gifts here and there, but thats about it. Never just went out and blew money for no reason. So fortunately I have enough to be able to go back to school and graduate without working and go from there.
I honestly love life right now. In my 2nd semester since going back and my son is 5 months old. I go to school and most days come right home and hang out with my family. I am on track to graduate next May,and most likely will get a job instead of play poker. I loved all my poker trips around the country, but just don't think its fair to leave my family for weeks at a time, nor do i want to. on top of that itd be really hard to. I still grind on cake a little, and was on bodog before it switched. I still enjoy playin poker, but don't have any desire to move out of the country to play online, and grinding live is so brutal with travel/sleeping in hotels/14 hour days(mtts)
Like others have mentioned, there comes a time where your family is the most important thing and it is for me. If I have to work a 9-5 to do that, so be it. Ill evaluate in May when i graduate and asses the poker situation, but most likely it will be a hobby and not a living. Ever since being a kid, as wierd as it may be I have been looking forward to having a family and working everyday instead of school, so its prob more appealing to me than most. I also never had aspirations to play poker forever. I pretty much just wanted to make enough to buy a franchise or create my own restaurant.
Im still jealous of most of my friends who I see playin tournaments all the time or see people posting about grinding on sundays, but not near as jealous as id be of seeing pictures of someone else's baby if I saw it before i started a session.
Good post QW, what field are you going to get into after you graduate?
im majoring in finance, and plan on getting a minor in accounting after i graduate while working. Im hoping to get into an investing/stock brokerage firm. Always been good with numbers and the stock market is interesting to me. Fortunately I know a few people who should be able to open doors into those fields so hopefully it works out.
First of all thanks to all it was amazing to read all those post !
I am nobody, but because you guys took the time to share with us i want to do so.
After having be working since im 15 years old( backery, supermarket, cellphone shops...) for 40k a year, wich is not a lot in Switzerland, I cashed 94k with some friends by playing my second time higher buy in than 100 dollars of my life. I took multiple holydays in Thailand. Crushing all my winnings in those travel with my friends.
Finally back to Switzerland with only 20K left we rented an office with my friends and started to believe in living from the poker. But, i wasn't ready to do so i had no experience of middle-high stackes and the cost of life in Switzerland is so f**kn high that it was a complete dream to be able to live out from those 20K.
Trying to survive ive been back to work again. And i can completely understand the feeling of dmschec.
Then I started work in March of 2010. I was fresh out of law school and being paid significantly more than what I was worth to the firm at the time. I felt incredibly fortunate to have the opportunity, it was great to use my brain and learn how to become a better attorney. I felt more plugged into the city and the world around me. I started reading the newspaper regularly again. I started reading the New Yorker and New York Magazine again. I coached a high school mock trial team from the Bronx as a pro bono project. I felt like a real person again, I was no longer some lonely ghost sitting in my boxer shorts all day clicking buttons on my laptop.
This time i started to learn the languages and really felt in love with the country, the people, the food, the culture and the nature. I learned a lot from them about life and by the way on poker... back to Switzerland my only dream was to live in Thailand. But back to Switzerland the problem was the same not enough funds, not enough expérience and not enough discipline.
I was really lucky that my mom wanted to support me to make a course or a formation. I choosed Thai language ! So i learned Thai language in an intensive programme in Bangkok for 13 month and other 6 month made a Thai studies certificate. Between those 2 years of studies i had enough time to start grinding again. And build a raisonable bankroll for Thailand.
Now im playing full time in Thailand ! My dream became true ! I had to be patient, to be broke, to be drunk, to be in prison and to be in love before my dream can be true.But ive never been happy like this and i never played in so good conditions. I could not play in these conditions in Switzerland even with a 4 or 5k monthly salary...
So to the initial poster i will say, if you want/must go back to work it doesen't mean you will never be a pro-player again. Prepare your self again and try again ! Maybe some other countrys.... Or if you find your self more happy with a "normal" job, play poker for fun !
You say it was not succesful as you waited. You mean in terme of poker or your life in your new country ?
Anyway, thanks a lot for starting this thread !
And glglglglgllglglglglgllglglgl to all !
PS: Sory for my english and Youre welcome to Bangkok guys !!!
Was a pleasure to read you Mr Penito, your story seems very nice and your friends seems really nice and good at poker good luck at all of you ;D
Since everyone is telling cool stories, I'll share mine.
I'm probably the only person who left a good job to play poker after Black Friday. I just looked at my W2 from last year and I made about $44k at a dental school, managing inventory, doing repairs/IT work and just being the guy people went to when they had problems. I got the job through my mother who works at the school. Prior to this job I was working in retail for $8.50/hr after working for my dad's cabinet sales/distribution company which got hit hard by the recession. Before that I dropped out of college at 18 to start a retail business which failed due to my inability to manage risk, but that's another story. I went from a horrible job to this cool new job where I'm surrounded by 18-28 year old girls (I have no game but I managed to get some during my tenure there!), everyone makes me feel important, I'm staying busy, etc. and all was good for a while. Unfortunately my boss was the type of the person who made everyone miserable. She came in late, left early, took extra days off, dealt out work to others that she should be doing, and her attitude had everyone intimidated and edgy. She also lied to her employees and attempted to steal about $15k worth of equipment from one of our suppliers.
Because my workload was so heavy I couldn't take more than a couple of days off at a time, and when I did take those vacation days my mind was always on work, wondering what messes I'd have to clean up when I returned. The students were progressing through the program and more cohorts of students were starting, and I had the responsibility of keeping the supplies stocked and managing the budget without any inventory tracking or accounting software. My coworkers were working just as hard, if not harder than I was and they also couldn't take time off. Tension in the office began to mount, and the drama never seemed to end. I ended up getting involved with one of the students and when things went south with her that pretty much killed my enthusiasm for the job.
Poker was going pretty well. Despite low volume I was going deep on a regular basis, final tabled a some good tournaments, and came really close to some real money. I was in over $30k makeup due to poor game selection, playing too many tables, and just not putting forth the effort, but then I hit a bit of a stride and really felt I'd get out soon if I kept at it. In January of 2011 I decided I was going to leave my job at the end of the year and go back to school while playing poker to support myself. This is my one obligatory whine sentence; I got 12th in the 105 super turbo during multi-entry week, KK<55 of sctrojans with about 50k for first, then that Sunday I got 10th in the Brawl where first was $388k and 14th in the early $162 where first was $132k, and then two weeks later Black Friday happened. My makeup was the lowest it had been in nearly a year, and had it not been for stupid live poker I would have been out! I went into a bit of a funk after BF. With poker and the girl gone and my job being how it was I basically woke up in time to shower and shave, got breakfast at McDonalds, worked, then came home where I'd get really stoned and watch TV until I went to bed. I did discover a new hobby in downhill skateboarding but it was so hot in Arizona that I'd only be able to skate at night, and I couldn't stay out too late because I had to be up at 6:00 the next morning. I managed to get away from work for one WSOP where I made a decent run, got to experience EDC and even tried DMT (trip report available upon request). I came home and knew I had to change something in my life, and soon. Towards the end of August I decided I was going to continue with my plan of quitting my job and playing poker, so I started selling my possessions and preparing for Mexico.
I left in early January. Prior to coming here I'd never left the USA before and despite living in Arizona where there is a healthy latino community I speak little to no Spanish. Cabo San Lucas can be expensive and surprisingly boring but it's a good change of pace. Poker has been fair to middling; my volume suffered due to MoneyBookers and pokerstars giving my all kinds of trouble making it difficult to move funds around, and I've had a bunch of close calls and final tables where I bust in stupid fashion and don't get the results I'm after. But I run hotter than the sun at 180s so the makeup-o-meter is staying fairly low. Despite having some decent results over the last couple weeks I've been tilty/over it especially after going deep in something big and coming up short. Tournament poker can be a mindfuck, and the effects are compounded by a lackluster work/life balance. Down here everyone I know is a poker player, the complex where I live is 55 units and probably 20% of them are occupied by poker players and I just never seem to get away from the game.
Despite the downsides and uncertainty, I'm happy I took a shot. Sometimes I ask myself if I made a good choice by coming here, and I think I did. I wake up in the morning and make myself a good/healthy breakfast before my session, some days after a walk around the marina. I get to cook lunch and dinner for myself too, and I don't mean sandwiches and Hot Pockets - I'm talking steak, bacon, man kinda food! I run the treadmill or lift weights at the gym daily. If I want to work early in the morning, I can do that. If I want to work a night session, I can do it. What if I want to work 16 hours a day, or no days at all? What if I want an easy day of volume grinding 180s, or picking out the 6-10 toughest tournaments I think I'm +EV in and just focusing hard on the action? Never in my life have I been able to do those things. Having time and flexibility to do things on your terms will do great things for your overall health and happiness, and I think it's something Americans either never experience or just take for granted. Being 23 years old and a malcontent who has no idea what he wants to do with his life is difficult, but this move has been a catalyst for change and personal growth and hopefully this will get me one step closer to finding my niche in life, whatever it may be.
I'm going home later this month for a couple of weeks because I'm kind of homesick; I'm a pussy and have never been away from friends and family this long. While I'm there I'm going to see an advisor at the community college by my house to see what steps I have to take to get back into school full time, and then I'm probably going to go somewhere else for a few more months of grinding. If it doesn't work out I'll go back to school and work for my grandparents' roofing business handling the accounting and streamlining their supply chain system. My dads business is doing pretty well too, so I've got some more work there if I need it. I also have a lot of experience and contacts in dentistry so there are probably a few opportunities available to me there as well, so if this poker thing doesn't work out I have a few hedges against busto.
I'm sure there are people who hear about what I did and think I'm a big idiot, but money isn't everything. Waking up in the morning and saying "God damn, I DON'T want to go to work today" five days a week, thinking about my job even when I'm not supposed to think about my job, and being depressed isn't worth $45k and some health benefits to me. Without a degree I had no advancement opportunities and I didn't receive a raise during my tenure so I'm not giving up too much as it is.
Well I'm 29, and haven't worked my entire life and have never went to college so ya black fridayEdited By: Believer82 Sep 3rd, 2012 at 05:48 AM
ruined my life. I played two wsops after that with no luck, broke as shit , and now trying to move out of a free country to continue my job, ironic. I just don't see myself going to college and getting a real job I'm pretty sure I'll be the guy that gambled from 17 tell the day he dies for money.
That would be a funny interview, so what was the last job you had? Sir this would be my first.
Plus I'm to stubborn to let the government take away what I want to do smfd