Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
  • entries
    23
  • comments
    15
  • views
    591

Entries in this blog

07/13/2017: 100 session challenge to me.

Bankroll: 1,500 starting value.

Goal in 100 sessions to build to 3,000 minimum playing 4/8 limit and 8/16 limit mixed with small 30 dollar and 50 dollar weekly tournaments.

Track all sessions with excel and keep detailed records of all sessions and players I encounter.

Post updates at least weekly if not two times a week.

See where it goes and where it ends up. This is a fun hobby thing and something I will do for enjoyment and learning.

Good luck to me.

I love this game. I hate this game. I am great at this game. I suck at this game. I think we have all at one time been in the mix of emotions that poker makes you aware of and makes you contend with. I know I have.

I consider myself a student of the game in general. I am a reader of books. I practice at home. I take notes and I keep a detailed journal of ALL poker related activities. It is a hobby I take seriously and a challenge I pose to myself to do better at all the time. (OK try to do better at)..

Now I know that there is a HUGE contention of folks who scream there is no game and no profit in 4/8 limit poker in a live setting. The rake is too high, the players too bad, and the variance impossible to keep up with.

I agree that the rake is high, and I am glad that the players are so bad. Yes I do get hammered on days by the gangs of fish who play any ace to the end, or call with any suited cards from any position because HEY they were suited, and every other low limit low concern or lack of skill excuse you can throw out there.

I have read many books on low limit structure and strategies and have pretty much adopted the standards of "Low Limit HoldEm- Winning big with expert play" as my base game approach. This was keeping me afloat and in a small profit area on a monthly basis but still I felt something was missing like I was still out of the zone I was looking for not racking in chips not hitting some huge pots that I saw fish ranking in with gut-shot draws and funky hits all around.

Then I found another book another tool for my arsenal. "Holdem on the come" I do not know why but this book combined with the other made a perfect accompaniment to each other for me. I knew about drawing hands and outs and odds and implied odds but this book put them together for me in a way that for some reason clicked and the light that was on got brighter than ever. It changed my approach again not really my base game so much but my post flop game changed drastically I think. I am seeing not just pot odds more clearly and faster but it has given me the tools to predict more accurately the implied odds for the hand based on player count and evaluation so that I am able to more clearly see some thinner draws that have profit potential I was missing before.

Now I am seeing turns that before I was avoiding, and seeing my options and outs in a much more dynamic sense. This has lead me to be much more aggressive with drawing hands and hands that have not completed yet because I see the potential more clearly and understand the value in the hand from another perspective. I am not just looking at what is in the middle now but what can I get in the middle by the end and are my outs the winning outs I can invest in.

I was very weak at this before I see this now.

All this said I now do not have to try so hard to sneak in and grab a big pot or get lucky in traffic to have my hand hold up I am building the pots when I want them and jamming on the flop a lot more than I ever used to with big draws not waiting for the card to come. This has also done a lot for my image especially against regular opponents. I am checked to in middle and late spots a lot more and I can control my investment in hands it seems more regularly as folks do not just open bet into me as freely because they are aware that two or even three bets is not uncommon on the flop and it is harder for them to tell where I am coming from, made hand or draw.

I feel that this has made it easier for me to relax and play and not get as emotional about hands in general. I have odds and outs I put in chips I do not always get there and we all know this but now when I do it is worth it and it is on my terms more than not. But when I do not get there for some reason it is easier for me to say well I got it in with the right hand because I feel more in control and am not as surprised by outcomes that do not go in my favor.

Now I have a bad day and I can be down two racks sometimes two and a half, but my good days are coming in four racks and five racks at a time and that has not been biggest difference for me.

Holdem on the come check it out it made a world of change for me and now I am actually paying some small and middle bills at home and have been able to grow a bankroll that will be allowing me to see the 8/16 table more regularly and approach this with a stronger confidence than I did before when I played at that level as a scared money wannabe.

I have spent countless hours, weeks, months, and even longer studying, practicing, and logging information on my game and the games I play in regularly. Now not all of this is wasted time. I have learned a great deal about the game of poker. My game has become much stronger. I have made a modest profit on a regular basis over the last several years. Now I know there is a huge base of players that believe low limit casino poker is for the dogs, and that it is purely a waste of time to try and beat the game as a whole because you are against so much crap in this environment.

I do not completely disagree with them. You are faced with huge challenges to overcome. Multiple players drawing against you, a huge rake percentage in the game, and the fact that you are playing a game designed to go to the end and have two or more players show down their cards. The showdown is for the most part the entertainment part of the game for the majority of players that I see on a regular basis. For me I have found that I very rarely want to see a showdown if I can avoid it I do not really care what my hand is I would prefer winning uncontested more than showing down a hand of any kind, but that is not what happens a lot.

I am a glutton for punishment and basically too stubborn to be smart. Even though I have some larger limit games and some spread limit games available to me I have been determined to "show them". Them being the folks who swear you can not make money playing low limit limit poker. Why have I been so determined? Who freaking knows it is not like "They" actually care if I do or do not make money playing the game.

I guess it is the fact that this is the challenge I have posed for myself and this is what I have used as my own motivation to learn and grow and develop as a player. I can honestly say that I am an above average limit player at this time and that I understand the game of limit poker and the strategies much better than the base of players I face on a regular daily basis.

That is one of the most valuable things to clarify "The strategies of limit poker" especially low limit poker are SO VASTLY DIFFERENT from other forms of poker that people I talk to generally have no real clue as to how to approach the game overall. I did not have a clue either when I started all of this I was so far out of the loop I could barely see. This forced me to learn and study and read and think and then start it all over again. I had to develop a completely new approach to the game and a completely new set skills and understanding for the environment and my opponents.

I have done all of this over and over just as any player in any game at any limit would have and it has paid off. In the beginning I got cleaned very regularly I could not figure it out I lost and lost again had a small win and then lost had a huge day and then lost 3 sessions in a row. I tried adjustments to starting hands and to image I tried ultra tight and supper aggressive I was a super nit I tried the maniac raise all game. Oh how I tried, I tried to change every thing I could think of about my game how I played the game, how I acted during the game, how I looked during a game. I tried to change or as I kept calling it adjust anything I could think of to beat the game.

Then it all settled I got a clue about it.

It wasn't the game it was ME.

I was trying too hard. Trying to solve a mystery that did not exist trying to change them rather than let them be them and let the game come to me. I was trying to beat the game and the players instead I needed to play the game and let it do what it does naturally and then benefit from the natural activity of the other players. They for the most part came to "PLAY" to "GAMBLE" to have fun and to challenge and test fate. I came to make money on their natural desires and tendencies.

They want to play and to put chips in action and see cards and call bets I did not have to do anything to manipulate this activity or action it occurred naturally. I had to stop fighting this and just let it happen and change how and when I interacted with it. The game is not rocket science and it does not take magical skills of deception or manipulation. Basic math, a little courage, and a lot of understanding and I was finally making money on a regular basis and not fighting so hard.

Overall the one an MOST IMPORTANT SKILL that all of this has forced me to develop is PATIENCE.

The second most important skill for this PERSISTENCE.

The third most used skill I have developed is HUMILITY.

Playing low limit limit poker properly and as an income earning en-devour is to say the least BOOOOORRRRRIIINNNGG!!!!!!!!! As with even the mid limit limit games. Limit poker in itself is a true grind.

I am teased regularly that I fold more than a road map. This is true I am now very conscious of what I play, when, and why. But believe it or not I have had to actually open up my game a bit and play a more position based game rather than a true nuts based game. Hand values in this environment are skewed drastically by traffic in the hand, and by the house rake. Pre-flop odds are changed a lot and post flop play is the meat of the game.

So I wait a lot for the right situation and the right value for a hand not the true nuts. Even then I see very few turn cards with traffic. The flop is of monumental value and changes the direction of my hand regularly. Good starts are that, "starts" once the flop is out with 5 or 6 others on average values are now all changed and odds and position will dictate activity almost no matter what two I hold in my hand. I can not tell you how many times I have had 2 red aces against 4 opponents in a raised or even capped hand and see a flop of 3 spades or J97 with two clubs and a bet and a raise in front of me. I am gone I have no value here.

I have days where this is a recurring issue and I get destroyed. Fluctuation at this level is and can be drastic. I also have the opposite days where every thing works well and I get paid off with the nut straight on the every street by 4 players and they cram the pot for me with two pair or a small baby set and sometimes even less. But I stick to MY game I stick to MY approach I try my best to play consistent and I am persistent I take my beats and go home only to come back and do it again and again day in and day out.

I do not hate or berate my fellow opponents any more. (I used to believe me I used to throw a fit) I do not make comments on play or lack of play. I am polite social and just a regular old guy as best I can be. I try to laugh joke and congratulate my weaker and less knowledgeable friends on good days and lucky draws as I have watched on so many other days as they go to their wallets and purses and say hold my seat as they hit the ATM for the second and third time in the day.

it is boring playing well and frustrating when the deck will not cooperate at all and you feel like the universe is against you. It is tiresome sticking to your game plan day in and day out while others play any two from any spot and get there again and again. It is hard to take your beats with a smile and say good game to the player who knocks you out for the day with a 8/5 off after calling a three bet cause he was in the blind anyway and it is only limit poker. You say well done and see you tomorrow as you head for home after a 7 hour session with a 15 dollar profit or a break even day (which at this limit is a success believe me). You play the game cause that is what it is nothing more nothing less and at the end of the month your bank roll is up and you put a few in the bank, at the end of the year you add all the numbers and see that you made more playing this game than you would have working at the stop and go mart part time.

Well, I am back again like it or not.

Sitting here having a coffee and enjoying the morning quiet.

In my last posting I spouted off about how I have been searching for a persona. An image that I can develop and maintain while working at the poker tables and attempting to earn money.

The reason I even started worrying about this was because I have watched and seen how different styles of play (Even at the low limits) effect the game, and even effect individual players in the games. The most noticeable being either super aggressive, or super sticky (Chase all) players.

I am, or have been basically playing a nit card game (By the book). On days that cards drop my way I can earn 20 or 30 BBs in a good 5 to 7 hour session and I do not consider this a bad earn at a 4/8 game. However, when the cards do not drop my way I can leave those same 20 or 30 BBs in about 3 hours on a bad run. Then there are the flats as I call them the sessions I run flat and earn or loose 0.

I am or have been on average slightly ahead or break even on a monthly basis when I played this way. This is not the goal I have set for myself. I am trying to make a profit (Not a living) a profit. Remember, this is an ongoing experimental hobby with profit potential for me at this stage, and I am stubborn as a mule when I want to try and prove a point to myself.

I know in low limit show down poker I am severely restricted as to any real special poker plays or ploys. I have to have the right hand in the right spot with the right action to go any where. Just like 90% of regular poker only that the hand values and spot values are adjusted to account for huge rake and loose action. This is an adjustment I struggled with at first but feel I am coming into much better now. I am much more position dependent, and card dependent than in other forms of poker. This is fine I have made this adjustment and can not change this fact.

But I still need to get paid when I do get a hand and I still need to be able to steal a little here and there if conditions are right. I started thinking about perception and how my opponents think about me and react to me during a session.

As a basic solid game player, I was missing on opportunities and missing on some bets. I did not get paid off as much and I missed some good value in playing a little more open game I think.

So, I started the experiments I talked about in my lasts blog entry and I discovered that even at the lower limit games personality matters and people respond to how you act and how you play in positive and negative ways. I know this is true in all forms of poker and that an image game is not new, but I really thought at lower limit games it was less important or useful and I was wrong. Personality can change a game and this puts me in the driver seat more than I realized and more than cards do if I use it wisely. So, the question was for me, "What image fits best"? After several weeks actually of trying different styles and combinations, and paying for all of them I had an answer.

I am talkative, jovial, and seemingly reckless. I try and chat with those who will respond and I try and develop some fun banter if no offense will be taken. I have been more talkative and active in the last three sessions and try and get a home game atmosphere going if the table will allow it. It is still not stable and taking effort, but I am learning to talk the talk and not actually walk the walk. I start a game talkative and loose and even have been budgeting a few initial bets as goof advertising and try and get a hand or two to show down on the wrong side of the deck. If the table responds well and I can get one or two to follow the lead I keep up the banter and chatter a bit, but shut down my hands actually.

This has proven so far positive as I can get a table a little leery of me without actually pissing them off and making too many people mad. (There seems to always be a negative or bad mood player and I have to deal with them separate). Since I see a lot of the same faces in the same casinos it is worth it for me I think to develop an overall working image as a fun loose and social player. It seems to help me as well as I stay more relaxed and am not all balled up and trying so hard to play the perfect poker game and am more willing to let the game develop and come to me and then I adjust to it more easily.

It also allows me to control individual situations some times with words and not actual bets being risked believe it or not. I can get a few more free cards and I am getting a few more free or cheap show downs when I think I am in but maybe not quiet sure. I have been doing this with some gentle banter.

For example: I see an up front player thinking to bet I openly threaten to raise and I am surprised how often they then check to me even with others in the hand behind me. I announce I am there on the turn as I call a bet and get the river checked to me to allow a cheap make sure show down more times than not. All the while talking and smiling and trying to act like OH WELL THAT IS HOW THE GAME GOES. I have even been buying a few beers for fellow players who can show a good bluff or draw out on me when I am in the lead the whole way.

All in all I am playing a much more relaxed and open personality, not all serious and quiet and calculating. Even though I am trying to be very calculating on the inside and it seems to be paying dividends so far. I have even established some image points overall and have a number of players that will willingly go along and help make the party happen and even call me to their tables now and again and this is good business.

I am convinced that I am on the right path with this image and style. Talk, laughter, and good banter are all pointers to profit at the poker table and I am learning I can be a force even without cards to try and lead a game in a direction that more suites me. Low limit or not and maybe even more so at low limit. Poker is a people game played with cards and in learning and trying to utilize this I think I am in a direction of change for the better, my last three sessions have all been positive, both emotionally and financially.

My poker persona is developing and we will see what I am when I grow up. You know I will keep you posted

Well it has been a few since I posted any of my blabbering opinions of the hated world of low limit (limit) live poker and the fact that I believe I can make a profit over the long run.

I have been playing on a very regular schedule and I have not made any real profit or loss overall in the last several hundred hours playing 4/8 limit holdem. I am currently down 160 BBs, HOWEVER....I am not able to blame the game in its' entirety. I have had several hours of play that I admit I played very poorly. I had a major session that I posted as full blown tilt on my part. I am adding to this the fact that I have been experimenting with different playing styles and techniques.

Really, I have been working on what poker player I want to be, how do I want to be perceived by people I play with on a regular and daily basis. What persona fits me best and most comfortably as a player? Then I can adapt to individual game conditions and make more clear decisions.

I had to sit back and think to myself.."SELF" I said I need to find a stable medium that is both profitable and comfortable to me.

I tried to be super flamboyant and talk it up and gamble it up, calling for cards and saying things during the hand like "BINGO THAT'S ME", or "WHAT YOU DOUBTED I WOULD GET THERE" stuff like that. This is not me it did not feel natural and I was not good at it for any length of time. I do not mind attention, but I do not want the direct spotlight on me.

I tried to sit silent and wear my headphones and only communicate my actions when it was my turn almost be invisible. This was not bad and it did allow me to concentrate on the game and taking good players notes in my head and stuff. NO I DO NOT WEAR SUNGLASSES AT A 4/8 game. But I still felt that I was missing something and it was kind of boring.

I played super rock tight: Playing only on the thin top half of the deck AA-99 and AKs-JTs AK-JT and the like.That did not work I actually blinded out in a limit game I sat for 7 hours and played like 4 hands and finally was down to 20 dollars from a 140.00 buy in and I left...The "GOOD CARDS" do not come around consistently enough and when they do sometimes they do not hit or do not hold up in traffic. You kind of end up spinning your wheels unless the deck runs you over every day.

I played super aggressive: Raising preflop with any hand I opened action with and three betting any hand I would call a raise with raising on the C/O with any two cards higher than 9. That did not work so well for a couple of reasons I think. One reason is a single raise is not that intimidating to the fish that want to play dam it. Also it can entice looser action at this level because all of the sudden "OH OH BIG POT BREWING I MIGHT GET LUCKY". Finally I have watched and after a while of trying to push you actually alienate yourself from the table and a kind of mob mentality takes over and you can actually hear people commenting that they are calling to "JUST BEAT YOU". You frustrate and irritate people to play even looser because they want to beat you out of a big pot or get even with you on some level. Now let me state that I made money with this style but it was very streaky and I lost money fast also. I think one of the other important things for playing long term is that I actually made people irritated and that is not a good business strategy. They are at the 4/8 game to "PLAY" and when you are too aggressive or a bully you are hurting their "PLAY TIME" and they want you to go away. Remember I said TOO aggressive NOT, NOT AGGRESSIVE

I played Super Loose Passive: I called any suited connector from any position. I called any two cards ten or higher from any position. I called any one gap suited down to 57s (not much lower than that) I limped and called single raises across the board never taking control or trying to take control of the hand or the game. I check called the flop on almost any draw not betting even good double draws. This was just flat a waste of time and chips. I tried being one of them and calling to make sure and not wanting to get over involved until I thought i had the nuts. I did not bother anybody and did not draw much attention to myself and in the end I did not accomplish anything. I lost a little and broke even a little. Overall this is a looser as I miss value, pay off too weak, and do not protect hands enough.

I think I have made some good changes and am closer to figuring this part out. I am a semi talkative person, I have a fair personality, and a good sense of humor in my own opinion. I am naturally a semi conservative person with good math and probability skills. I am very competitive, and I am also my own hardest critic.

I am completely comfortable with the fact that on all hands I am gambling. I am not trying to actually (beat) my opponents any longer. I am trying to gamble smarter than them, and I am trying to gamble in the most profitable situations possible. They (My Opponents) provide and pay for these situations is all.

So, how do I incorporate this into my overall game plan and business model? Why is it even important to worry about a poker personality?

Good questions, and ones that I will go into in depth on my next blabbering of opinionated spew.

Well more words of words from someone who thinks they have a plan, or a clue, or an idea, or just time to kill.

As I spouted off previously on the world of low limit casino poker here in Arizona. I made comment on all the secondary crap and obstacles that are placed in and around the game that make it less a “poker game†and more a “game showâ€. I have also made comment on the every present hand of the house, in the form of rake and players promotional funding.

It is what it is. If I am going to play poker in Arizona on a regular basis I need to get over this little fact for now and adjust my game and strategy to take these things into account. I need to try my best to use them to my advantage. I can also avoid a lot of this by playing more tournaments and also I am learning that there are games that are not raked for the promotions at other casinos possibly. (They are however at this moment higher limit games that I may not be able to afford but will investigate more thoroughly).

So, adjust is where I am right now and adjust is what I will do. As I posted earlier there are so many things that go on in the casino environment that you really have to be aware of when playing. Especially, in lower and middle limit games like 3/6, 4/8, and even 8/16. The number one item and the most important item is the RAKE this is a SUPER MAJOR AND UNAVOIDABLE obstacle for me the player.

The next item I feel I need to be very aware of and avoid is the KILL BUTTON why people seem to gravitate to this button is beyond me it is a serious tax on profit and it puts you in a very bad spot after a minor win if you ask me. (More on this to come also)

The action generated by people chasing hands that may qualify for the bonus giveaways is more easily adapted to in my opinion.

I am going to start this with Rake adjustments and go from there. Now I have not come up with all of this by myself, I am not that bright. I have done a good deal of reading and question and answer with multiple sources to come up with most of my information. I have then mixed it all together and given it a shake and a stir and out comes my opinions and ideas on the subject.

At the levels I compete at for the time being the rake is so huge that it changes the game as a whole in very drastic manner. Add to this the KILL BUTTON, and I am changing the way I play a lot.’

The house is raking on average 200.00 dollars an hour or 25 BBs and hour at 4/8, and 12 BBs and hour at 8/16 and I am trying like hell to stay at about 1.5 to 2 BBs an hour profit as a player.

I do not want to pay the rake, and I do not want to pay a double blind out of position and have a large percentage of my last pot profit sacrificed.

So I want and need to pay as little as possible of my share of the rake at all times. I also want to avoid an extra bet in small and medium pots that can turn into kill generators if I win (sounds weird I know but I think it is true).

So, on as many hands as possible I want other players paying the rake for me. This means I have to know when the rake is taken and how much, when the players promo fund is taken and how much, and when this is all capped and cleared from the pot. I now know what I am playing for. This means adjusting my pre flop play as well as on the flop play.

pre flop is when the rake affects my odds and math the most as the pot is not offering the true value at this point. For example if in a 4/8 game 4 players limp that is 17 dollars in the center because one dollar from the small blind is a dead drop and never sees the felt. As soon as the flop hits the house takes another 4 out of the pot leaving 13 dollars and if a bet is made and called another dollar comes out. So my odds are a little less than 3 to one on a preflop call not 4 to one. This is extra true on hands that have only two or three limpers as the odds are dropped on continuation bets and calls for the next round as action puts the rake into the next drop category.

I know this sounds petty, it may be, but in the course of a week or a month not paying attention to this can and I believe will drop profit.

This also makes playing from early and middle positions more difficult. If I raise early and knock out players, I in essence pay more of the rake, and the calls that I may get are diminished significantly as they are taken by the house. There is not real profit in the hand until the next betting round, if I can be safe enough to get there. In middle position with a few early limpers I cannot actually count the first 1.5 or say 2 bets as value because my call or another call increase the pot to drop those bets as rake money and they are gone. Any hand that I think I am getting 4 to one on preflop is actually only a 2.? something to 1 call preflop unless I know I am getting weak action behind me and no raise. My math is not intended to be perfect for this it is an example of how the rake affects pot value is all.

All this said and I know I am confused and probably confusing, but I have to adjust to actually let players into the hand. I WANT more action and I need to let weaker hands play a bit more so that the percentage of bets is still in the pot after the rake. This means a lot less pre flop raising and playing in and with traffic after the flop. This is when true value and profit is generated in these games, under this structure. I have to develop a much stronger post flop game and be able to maneuver in and out of pots more effectively after the flop hits.

Raising UTG or + 1 or +2 with KK or QQ to thin the field to win actually can cost you value under this structure and limping puts you at more risk again so it is a catch22 you are damned if you do and damned if you don't. I do think that there may be a plus side to this. As an adjustment for me, it means I limp more from later positions with hands I call developmental, suited connectors and bigger one gap suited connectors that can hit the board in multiple ways and allow me to push/raise after the flop even with traffic.

As I have spouted again in my own desire to learn and participate it becomes apparent at least to me that in this low limit, high rake, and full kill environment I need to be extra patient. NOT EXTRA TIGHT.

My fellow players are as a group so loose pre and post flop that I need to see some flops and let the deck have a chance to help me out. I also need to learn and be very aware of how to read the board and know what my TOTAL outs are and how they can affect my hand.

Seeing flops means hitting flops and missing flops and folding on the flop and on the turn a great deal more than my opponents. I almost always need a hand that has value against multiple opponents. Single big pairs will be dumped more often against action than maybe I would like, and middle two pair hands will be raised and protected more than I am used to. Drawing hands and what I call double draws need to be played a bit more aggressively in this environment as I will get action on the come a lot.

In this game structure early and middle positions are bound up tight with rake and lack of information for the most part. Late positions are semi open and need to be utilized as much as possible and as much as traffic will allow. Small blind is speculative at best and big blind needs to be defended a little more on the gamble with middle and semi middle draw options with a hit or get out opinion.

Because of the high rake structure any profit is coming in multi way pots and after the flop, so playing strong in traffic and holding your own are essential skills for the game. Also a willingness to push smaller edges a little harder and an understanding that I am against all kinds of crap that will get there again and again.

You have to know about and be willing to play against the rake as an opponent or it will take you with it more than not. I am going to try and make this adjustment and get my piece from the action even against the rake. In essence I have to learn to share with the rake as I am not going to beat it and this means a strategy of cooperative betting that will leave me some left overs more times than not.

I am probably wrong and sound like a fool but hey life is short play the fool sometimes.

The more I learn the less I know. As I keep studying, learning, and making mistakes. The game keeps moving around me. This is not new information and it is not a secret being brought to light for the first time. I just feel like adding my opinions to the vast internet pool of opinions and seeing if anything gets splashed back on me.

As a player of low limit casino poker I try to play well and I try to learn and adjust to the game and to my opponents just like a good little gambler should.

However, the more I play in the local casinos the more I am learning that the game has become distorted and bastardized by them (The casino). It is very difficult, if not impossible to actually play reasonable poker and get reasonable results.

I understand completely that the casino is there to make money for the casino and that in the card room there are two things that they want to focus on.

Hands per hour and maximum rake per hand at all times. I also understand that the rake is broken down into two segments.

House rake and what they call the players promotional fund.

The rake is how the house gets paid and makes a profit for managing the room overall I get this. There are other ways to get paid as well for them I get this.

The players promotional fund is a little different to me. This is money that they take from us the players and then use to fund the promotions and specials in the room to draw in players to make more rake and to take more for the fund.

Then they give back PORTIONS of the money in various ways and in various promotions and the players are like hey wow thanks, I won free money good for me, thanks poker room. When in fact they are giving you back a small percentage of money that they took from you in the first place. It was money from poker pots we should have already won and had in our pockets (at least some of us).

When I look at it I think the players promotional fund is the most dangerous and most expensive catalyst that is in existence. I can play against the rake and still have a strategy to make money and profit. When you add this players promotional fund and all the extracurricular activities that are spawned from it, this is when I see the game changing and becoming the overall crap shoot that is feels like to me at least.

Now do not get me wrong I have won my share of promotional money (That was mine anyway), and I also know that these promotions bring less than talented poker players into the poker room overall and that is in a way good for the game as well. I still feel that when there are so many promotions running at the same time in the same room it causes poker to not be poker and we see a chase for the promo.

Example: In one poker room on any given day,

Aces cracked promotion running: Get pocket aces cracked and you win a rack $100.00 dollars

Full house tickets given out for drawing on odd hours: Get a full house win or loose and get a lottery ticket for cash drawing every odd hour of the day (progressive)

Spin the wheel promotion: Get a straight flush (both hole cards must play) and you get to spin a prize wheel for cash awards

Bad beat Jack pot: Aces full of tens beat by four of a kind or better everyone gets paid (Standard bad beat jackpot)

Super 77 bad beat linked bad beat: Get 4 7s beat by a bigger 4 of a kind and win the progressive bad beat that is built by two sister casinos.

Then we add the sports splash pots: random tables drawn for scoring or end of quarters and the like and the casino adds from 50 to 100 dollars to a live pot making that hand a full blown crap shoot with the extra money throwing out all pot and implied odds and it is a call and run hand.

All in all by themselves not bad ideas and not a complete issue. BUT run them all at the same time in the same room and poker no longer is poker or at least it seems very difficult to play poker. (I may be way wrong in my view here). With all the promotions running at the same time look at it what hand can be folded and when and by whom.

Aces cracked: causes sever slow play and people not betting the hand they have as well as begging for help and allowing all to stay on the cheap while the worst hand draws out and gets thanked for hanging in there.

Spin the wheel promotion: gives every hand that even appears to be a suited connector more reason to call and see the flop. Once they see the flop and catch any piece of it well they are in now no sense in folding.

Full house tickets: Opens up for just about anything. Any pair before the flop and then it allows any two pair or baby set to stick in there on any board no matter what it is to possible catch there full house and collect a ticket that probably is worthless anyway. (the odds are not in your favor for the lottery drawing)

For a double whammy of the promo wave look at this scenario: I was playing to get the straight flush spin, missed that caught two pair so I stuck around to try and get my ticket for the drawing.

The bad beat jackpot aces full of tens beaten, I have no real issue with as this has at least a level of qualification for starting hands and values and these would be real hands doing battle anyway. Also the odds are so slim that this does not bastardize the play of hands overall in my opinion. The same with the super 77 jackpot this is at least a qualified hand and the effect on the overall game is not as I see it huge.

The sports splash pots again I have no real issue with they are fun and it is one hand that you know is a crap shoot and you should know to not try and play some special poker in these hands as this is not a poker hand. I am actually made fun of sometimes because I fold out of them especially the 50 dollar ones as they will cost me so much to chase in the long run and I usually know who I am wanting to win the money in the hand anyway.

The other promotions, in my opinion if they were run one at a time would not even be as bad. I could at least know what promotion was running and make some type of adjustment knowing or having and idea how it might change the action at the table. When they are all run at the same time I feel they cause the game to degrade even further than it would with just bad and loose poker players. Now there are more reasons and more excuses to play poorly and to chase weaker and farther. This makes for the perfect storm that kills poker and poker players trying to play poker. Fluctuations become monsters and swings dramatic and devastating.

I know that I am giving an extremest view point here and I also know that these things create action and build pots that are or can be larger than average on a regular basis. However, they also tie up the poker player as it limits what you can do to play defense or defend your hand with raises or re raises. It also makes it near impossible to read a hand or narrow down a range because bets and raises are called and made not on hand value but on promotions expectation and the desire to chase the so called free money.

So when we sit down at a poker table here in Arizona we are playing at a nine seat table, but you are battling against ten or more opponents.

The RAKE it is there it is known and the strategy and options against it are basic.

The promotions are a much harder adversary to play against and I am not at this point sure if a strategy exist to make adjustments for them other than fold anything that is not close to the nuts or your own promo qualifiers. There are too many at the same time to fight or make adjustment for them all in every hand all the time.

My opinion take less promo money from us and run fewer promotions at the same time so we can play a little closer to poker and farther from bingo with cards.

LET ME HAVE IT I STARTED THIS MESS........

Well, like it or not I am back.

I have taken some time and continued to burn brain cells and life energy pondering and hypothesizing about my relationship with low limit poker and how I can be profitable in a game that most rationale people say can not be beaten.

I know this is probably way too wordy and long for a good blog entry but hey I aint no pro so who cares

 

Here it is my updated list of I HAVE LEARNED.

This does not mean it will do me any good, or that I am even right. It means this is how I perceive it at this moment in time.

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I PLAY TOO TIGHT AND THE NIT NEEDS TO DIE: AT LEAST BE RELAXED A LOT.

I need to see a lot more cheap flops when I am in position and I need to open up my limp range from the middle spots with a few callers.

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT IT IS NOT AGGRESSION THAT WINS AT LOW LIMIT GAMES.

Raising is not needed for the most part especially since I will be seeing flops with more drawing hands. However since I will not usually be raising to thin the field I will be raising to build a pot it is still a valid action. Also raising on the button is more logical than anywhere else as up early no matter with traffic I have a problem after the flop

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT THE RAKE IS ANOTHER OPPONENT I NEED TO BE VERY VERY AWARE OF AND I WANT THEM TO PAY MORE OF IT THAN ME. (THIS IS GOING TO BE ANOTHER TOPIC THE 10TH MAN AT THE TABLE)

The rake is huge at over 200 an hour this will be good to track and learn for sure for many reasons

I HAVE LEARNED THAT WHERE I PLAY CASINO PROMOTIONS CHANGE THE GAME SO SO MUCH IT IS CRAZY. ACES CRACKED, SPIN THE WHEEL STRAIGHT FLUSHES AND BONUS TICKETS FOR FULL HOUSE DRAWINGS ALL CHANGE THE ACTION AND THE OUTCOME A TON. (MORE ON THIS IN A BIT)

ACES CRACKCED causes slow play and you bet into them more and do not get them identified. Also if narrows down my range as people say he does not have aces he raised.

Spin the wheel is a killer as it creates all kinds of draws to baby and back door hands that start out chasing the wheel but cause serious suck out issues. As well as small straights and flushes to be chased afterwards and they will not fold them unless they miss all the way through the hand.

Also full house tickets cause many more small pairs to stay and sets to chase and go for the tickets. Also any flopped two pair is sticking around to try and get a ticket.

Super 77 well we will see about that as this is a started hand anyway if you ask me

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT IF I WANT TO MAKE MONEY I NEED TO GET MONEY MOVING, FROM MY STACK AND FROM THERE STACK.

This I am not as concerned with as some of the others. What I am really trying to remind myself as a player is to bet my hand a lot more than check and worry. They WANT to call and combined with all the promos they will call and call and call so chips are moving. I just want as many as I can get when I have a hand. Do not worry about the suck out bet when you have the best of it.

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I DO NOT NEED TO TRICK, TRAP, OR CONFUSE MY OPPONENTS IN THIS STYLE OF POKER I JUST NEED TO BET.

See above…..

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I WILL SHOW DOWN A HAND SO I NEED TO HAVE A HAND 97% OF THE TIME.

So no bluff as a tool for play. However this also means I need to value bet with a different range of hands more often on the river and collect the over call bets. I need to study and learn this more effectively. I also need to call bets on the river more often with a different range of hands as these folks are betting there hand more than the board and there version of good or strong is all over the board

I HAVE LEARNED THAT IN LIMIT GAMES I AM GOING TO NEED TO CALL DOWN A LITTLE MORE FREQUENTLY. (THEY BET WAY TO WEAK OR THIN TO FOLD ALL THE TIME)

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT WHAT QUALIFIES AS A HAND AT THESE LEVELS IS A LOT DIFFERENT THAN WHAT I THOUGHT I KNEW.

Actually, any two cards and a hunch qualify for seeing the flop. Also once a piece of the flop connects with them most of the time it is super glue and they are going to stick to it just to make sure or just in case... Once again this is the reason I need to bet my hands and adjust my range especially on the river. I

See two pair call on a double straight board after a raise all the time. I also see straights call on 4 flush boards with a bet and even two over callers.

The weak flush is a disease and once they make it with any two suited cards they will not bet it for fear that it is no good, but will call all the way through hopping it survives.

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT TIGHT IS RIGHT, BUT TIGHT IS SUBJECT TO THE LEVEL OF PLAY AROUND ME. (THIS IS OF HUGE IMPORTANCE TO ME RIGHT NOW)

This is one of if not my biggest challenge and personal weakness right now. I need to work on this so hard it is killing me. I need and want to understand better how weak is actually strong when I am getting 5 and 6 or more to one pre flop odds and the hand is rarely raised. Also after the flop with so much traffic betting draws and what I call double draws is looking so enticing. Raising is also a money maker with so many people and hands that can improve in various ways I really need to be more aware of

PLAYING TIGHTER THAN THEM BUT NOT THE COMPLETE NUTS...

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I THINK WAY TOO MUCH AT THE POKER TABLE AND THIS IS NOT ALWAYS GOOD.

What I actually mean is thinking is good and I am not going to quit, but sometimes I need to listen to and trust that gut instinct or that little voice in my head.

On many occasions I have felt it yell call call call this bet and I fold and I was right to call. The pot was a little short at the time but 5 more bets went in before the show down,

I am also guilty as heck of hearing the voice scream at me RAISE RAISE RAISE RIGHT HERE RIGHT NOW. I do not listen I call sometimes it cost me the pot sometimes it cost me value, but it cost me when I do not listen.

OR the voice saying fold go away not here not in this spot not with the traffic. I call and loose three more bets as I stay out of position with top pair middle kicker and call down….

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT DRAWING HANDS CAN BE MORE VALUABLE THAN BIG PAIRS BECAUSE THE FLOP CAN HELP THEM DEVELOP MORE AND GET THROUGH TRAFFIC BETTER THAN BIG PAIRS CAN.

What I am saying to myself here is because I am seeing flops with 4 or more people on average raised or not I need to understand single pairs no matter how big are still underdogs if they do not connect with a set on the flop as there is going to be a draw out there of some kind for someone. Raising pre flop does not thin the field enough to change my expectation so when I do it the raise is for value not defense. Now do not get me wrong TT-AA is a raise I promise even with traffic as there are a lot of hands contributing dead and near dead money and we can always increase this. I am just doing it knowing that things will change or can change drastically after the flop and I need to be good with that fact and play accordingly when it happens.

Let it go when it goes the wrong way.

On the other side of this coin is the drawing hand scenario. I still am playing solid starts but I feel that with some of these say 9Ts-AKs and JT-AK I have or can have a little more flexibility after the flop as so many cards can give me more wiggle room. In position I can even get in with as little as 56s and up but this would be about my personal cut off and even then I am more inclined to drop anything smaller than 89s on average.

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I NEED TO BE WILLING TO TRY AND GET THERE MORE OFTEN EVEN ON SHY ODDS NOW AND AGAIN, IT IS BETTER FOR ME IN THE LONG VIEW.

See statements on over callers on river and extra bets coming in as implied odds are a little better with other callers in the hand for two extra betting rounds. However I am still reluctant to go beyond the turn bet into the double bets if I do not improve. I also do not go further if both of my options require runner runner cards. This means double backdoor draws with only over cards and the like.

 

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I NEED TO RELAX I AM A TIGHT ASS FOR THE MOST PART AND THAT AINT GOOD FOR PROFITS AND IT IS NOT AS FUN. I WEAR MYSELF OUT TRYING TO HARD FOR TOO LONG I NEED TO BREAK AWAY AND LET IT BE FROM TIME TO TIME AT THE TABLE

I am going to start off with a conceded statement. I am a smarter and better player than the vast majority of the people I play against on a daily basis.

This statement for all intents and purposes is true. I study, I observe, and I evaluate the game from levels and angles and for reasons that 95% of my opponents do not even consider or worry about. I play tight solid starting hands. (For the most part or until I get frustrated) I watch my position in the hand and try and make sure I am getting the best possible odds to get involved in the pot.(For the most part or until I get frustrated)

BIG DAM DEAL !!!!!!! Who gives a flying big two whoots what I do? They do not that is for sure. Guess what they are getting more chips than me right now and on a very regular basis.

HMMMMM....... Says I to me........ Maybe I am missing something in this little recipe for disaster...... Maybe I do not have something they have......

Maybe I do need to adjust the pieces of my own puzzle a bit.... Maybe I just suck and am unlucky and the universe just does not want me to be a winner.......

OK the last one is a stretch I know but we have all thought it at one point in time in our playing lives I bet..

All in alll and over and over poker is a game that is constantly making me think and making me wonder. I think maybe I need to tighten up, maybe I need to loosen up. I wonder if I should have raised that hand pre flop or I wonder if I should have quit when I was up/down a little bit. I wonder why they always get there and I can't. I wonder what would happen if?

All these little mysteries and all these little questions are the things that motivate me to keep coming back. Yes I play for money and yes I want money, but for me it is the challenge and the desire to develop and implement a strategy and a style that is both profitable and practical for me. With this all being said and all my other crap being posted what have I learned and what am I going to do now?

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I PLAY TOO TIGHT AND THE NIT NEEDS TO DIE: AT LEAST BE RELAXED A LOT.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT IT IS NOT ALL OUT AGGRESSION THAT WINS AT LOW LIMIT GAMES.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT THE RAKE IS ANOTHER OPPONENT I NEED TO BE VERY VERY AWARE OF AND I WANT THEM TO PAY MORE OF IT THAN ME.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT CASINO PROMOTIONS CHANGE THE GAME SO SO MUCH IT IS CRAZY. ACES CRACKED, SPIN THE WHEEL STRAIGHT FLUSHES AND BONUS TICKETS FOR FULL HOUSE DRAWINGS ALL CHANGE THE ACTION AND THE OUTCOME A TON. (MORE ON THIS IN A BIT)

I HAVE LEARNED THAT IF I WANT TO MAKE MONEY I NEED TO SAVE MONEY SOMETIMES.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I DO NOT NEED TO TRICK, TRAP, OR CONFUSE MY OPPONENTS IN THIS STYLE OF POKER I JUST NEED TO BET.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I WILL SHOW DOWN A HAND SO I NEED TO HAVE A HAND 97% OF THE TIME.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT WHAT QUALIFIES AS A HAND AT THESE LEVELS IS A LOT DIFFERENT THAN WHAT I THOUGHT I KNEW.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT TIGHT IS RIGHT, BUT TIGHT IS SUBJECT TO THE LEVEL OF PLAY AROUND ME. (THIS IS OF HUGE IMPORTANCE TO ME RIGHT NOW)

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I THINK WAY TOO MUCH AT THE POKER TABLE AND THIS IS NOT ALWAYS GOOD.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT IN LIMIT GAMES I AM GOING TO NEED TO CALL DOWN A LITTLE MORE FREQUENTLY. (THEY BET WAY TO WEAK OR THIN TO FOLD ALL THE TIME)

I HAVE LEARNED THAT DRAWING HANDS CAN BE MORE VALUABLE THAN BIG PAIRS BECAUSE THE FLOP CAN HELP THEM DEVELOP MORE AND GET THROUGH TRAFFIC BETTER THAN BIG PAIRS CAN.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I NEED TO BE WILLING TO TO TRY AND GET THERE MORE OFTEN EVEN ON SHY ODDS NOW AND AGAIN, IT IS BETTER FOR ME IN THE LONG VIEW.

I HAVE LEARNED THAT I NEED TO RELAX I AM A TIGHT ASS FOR THE MOST PART AND THAT AINT GOOD FOR PROFITS AND IT IS NOT AS FUN.

So with all I have learned or say I have learned what do I do how do I put it into my game?

Good question..and obviously one I have not answered properly, or maybe I have answered it I just have not been able to implement it properly.

I am going to pause here and reflect on my own statements of learning and implementation. It is unbearably clear that I am doing something incorrectly overall and that I need to step back and review before moving forward.

I said in all of this I would be as honest as I could and I have been in all my logs and my blogs. As all can see I have gone nothing but down hill since I started this process. I am in the whole for 150.00 BBs, or 1,300.00 dollars for the most part and this is not a cool place to be for me. I know that the long run is longer than we all anticipate. I also know that sometimes we are not as in control or even as responsible as we feel. We can look too deep, and try too hard to find answers and solutions to problems that are not as complicated as we think or problems that may not even exist.

So for now I take a few hours to relax and reflect. I will be back in a little bit with a clear head and a continuation of this rant that I have begun.

I played in basically two sessions in one on July 4th 2013: I made 100 dollars in around eight hours but played in some 3/6 some 4/8 games in the same day as all the 4/8 games were full for the night session. I do not change my approach for these two structures. More detailed information is in my diary and stats tracker logs that are open for viewing.

So, I had another good session and I am happy with some of the changes I have made and the new approach I am taking to the game overall. This brings me to another area of discussion and why I do what I do and were I get some of my ideas and motivations.

I base a lot of my ideas and concepts on a mixture of reading and experience. As most of you have as I have read and studied numerous books and countless internet pages of information and communication on low limit poker and live casino poker.

The main readings I use for my approach to this game are:

Small stakes Hold Em Winning big with expert play (Ed Miller David Sklansky and Mason Malmuth)

Winning Low Limit Hold Em (Lee Jones)

and most recently Caro's Most Profitable Hold'em Advice (Mike Caro) Duh

All of these books have provided great insight and ideas on the task of making low limit poker profitable for me. They have changed the way I view low limit poker and have allowed me to use my learning to view this type of poker as a different game with different strategies, approaches, and boundaries while still learning and playing other forms of the game such as spread limit, tournament, and Omaha to list a few and not get them mixed in approach or expectation.

But as the base of my education I thought that this information might make my blogging more credible as I have more than just hunches and hope that also fuel my desire and direction in this experiment.

The number one issue that I have taken into task for myself as a player is how I view my starting hand values. I am more aware of position, game conditions and overall texture of the game as a whole.

As I wrote earlier I am seeing more cheap flops and learning that post flop play is a much more crucial skill than the basic pre flop play of hands. So many more bets are coming in on these rounds that hand values are skewed more than I really ever understood thoroughly. Combined this with the fact that showdowns are seeing river bets paid in three and sometimes four spots on average by hands as weak as third pair or bottom two pair. This all makes value and true value a much more important aspect of this game as a whole.

I have loosened up more than I am used to, and have backed off on pre flop aggression A LOT. I am using the board more than just my main starting cards to assign value going forward and I am more in a fighter scrounger mode than a finesse player.

I fight for medium pots post flop more aggressively. A pot with more than 4 bets post flop is worth fighting for if I have the options on my side.

In low limit (all Limit games) these options and edges are very small and I am learning to push them when they are available and take a deep breath and leave when they disappear.

In low limit fighting or defending a hand is not like other limits it is more difficult to do and timing is more important in my opinion it is hard to describe well.

Check calling can be a benefit, letting others lead weaker and longer than usual is a better option sometimes, especially in smaller pots that can grow if you let them.

Patience and understanding are a very valuable combination at this level. (I am weak in both of these areas right now)

Power bets, all out aggression and trickery or trapping are not that needed. I lead bet a hand, check call a draw and lead bet solid draws and double draws sometimes. I do not need to check raise often at all and make value on straight betting my hand. Most of my opponents do not want to fold, and do not believe the hand is over until the river or later.

I bet the obvious more times than not and get called regularly so I do not need to work hard on getting them into the action. Getting them out is a little closer to impossible unless they miss by a mile and probably do not have overcards.

So for now I am feeling like I am on the right path. I know I have been in a downward trend and that is frustrating but for some strange reason my attitude is good and my motivation to continue in this direction feels strong. I have confidence in my decisions right now and am enjoying the process of refining.

I know it will pay off I trust me.......

4/8 limit full kill. Was in the game for 300 cashed out 300 (EVEN) played 6.75 hours and paid 156.00 in blinds. Still down loosing 2 BBs an hour (Just keeping it real).

There was a ton of action overall in the card room last night. 7/3/13. My table was super loose and pretty aggressive overall so I did not have to do anything to create action. All I tried to do was time my involvement, stay aware and be willing to get chips in and stay a little more confident.

Well, I am booking this as a win. I played a little differently (Not a lot). It seemed to go OK. I started out way down again but was able to come back. I was down almost three racks and ended up even. At one point I was up about 80 dollars at my high point.

I was more aggressive post flop when I had options and position. I saw more flops in position, and especially when there was action in the hand.

When I had a hand that could hit or I could drop easily I limped pre flop a lot and did not get carried away as the amount of regular traffic changes the value of hands so much. The flop is of much more importance in this game I am realizing. I dumped KK and QQ post flop on weak boards when there was unusual action and I was right baby two pairs and a set. They all raise and push on the flop instead of waiting for the big bet on the turn (Which I do not disagree with play straight forward get value when you have it).

More than once I have to admit I got punished for playing baby suited connectors early I flopped flushes both times and was punished by players who flopped bigger flushes, even though two players flopping a flush together is not common I got spanked twice doing this.

Overall. I need to keep re evaluating my play and basing my activity more on table action than on my card value overall.

I need to be playing tighter and more solid than them but not nut solid (I tend to be a little too tight I think) as pay offs change hand values and I have not been paying attention to this very well as of late. As I know all I really want is better than my opponents on average not the stone cold nuts this makes it harder for them to get away (Not that they want to) and I get paid better.

I am admitting that being a nit has cost me money. I think I have been trying to play too well "By The Book" instead of using the book for boundaries and as a base of understanding I have been allowing it to act more as a restriction and a cuff. Last night all I did was try and make sure that I knew what I expected when I entered a hand and I knew why I was entering a hand.

Example: It was 5 players limped before me and I had T8s Hearts on the button I called NOT thinking I had the best hand knowing I would miss more than not but that if I got the flop I wanted... One with draw and double draw opportunities and the action before me was right I could play this hand in many ways for profit or I could get the heck out and wait again not being disappointed if or when I missed the flop. I did not play expecting to smash the flop that is the gamble. I played knowing what flop I was looking for and anticipating options I would use if I developed a board that worked for me. I need to be thinking ahead of the flop and be comfortable with my own expectations and reasons for getting involved.

So what I am saying is that I have come to a stronger realization that tight is right but too tight is a leak also and as a player I need a more flexible gauge on my tightness settings. Trying to play too right is wrong and now we adjust for more than card values and charts and books. This means testing failing and re-evaluating, then testing again.

I feel I have lost the proper sense of the gamble and why I am involved in the game overall. I am going to keep working on this and keep playing more in this style for the low limit games.

Perfect poker is not always profitable poker I forgot this and I think this is one reason I have been behind the power curve.

More to come like it or not

A BRAIN FART AN EPIPHANY AN IDEA:::

I have been loosing a lot lately and I have been taking solace in the fact that the blinds I have been paying are close to the amount I have been loosing.

I THINK THIS IS THE WRONG OPINION TO HAVE AND THE WRONG WAY TO LOOK AT THIS.

1. If I am loosing or able to loose this amount in my own blinds so is someone else this means, am I not defending my blinds enough against weak attacks

2. am I not attacking the blinds enough as this is what the battle is really for in the long run

2a Does the rake get increased for a single raise to steal the blinds and if so does this change this strategy overall.

2b should I attack from the small blind more and potentially be viewed as a jerk or just an overaggressive player. See note above for financial ideas. However this is a give me your dam money or go away issue as the entire game should be viewed correct.

Overall I am thinking that if I can decrease my overall loss in blinds by even 30 to 50 percent I accomplish a lot over the long run as well as survive a little longer in down sessions to be able to get the cards I need.

I also change my overall image to the regulars as looser more aggressive and a more prominent player rather than a go by the book be a nice guy.

I am tired of loosing my money and the only way I can stop this is by looking for ways and means to TAKE someone else money on a regular basis.

The blinds and my blinds have to be re evaluated in this idea.

THE INITIAL STRUGGLE IN HOLDEM IS FOR THE BLINDS. EVEN THOUGH THE HOUSE IS KILLING IN THE RAKE I NEED TO GET BLIND MONEY ON A REGULAR BASIS FOR SHORT TERM AND LONG TERM SURVIVAL.

The idiot last night had the right idea partially. He was raising liberally in middle and late with average and above average hands and he was also willing to make sure a little more often when he had a piece that could develop. I can not suggest overall his total sticky play was correct but, the aggression combined with the ability to take one off is together a stronger approach than I have been using.

Tight aggressive has its place but I need the blinds and I need to take them when possible or I am a fish and not a player. F*&$ the courtesy chop. If you wanna be weak and offer me a chop fine if, I want your money give it up or defend it this can be about 30 to 50 dollars a session I bet and at this point that is very important to me and this allows for opening the door to other options. Also I have come to realize that tight is in comparison to the game I am in and the players around me. The looseness of them defines and adjust my tightness.

NEW BOTTOM LINE IS BLIND MONEY IS PROFIT AND SURVIVAL DO NOT FORGET IT AND DO NOT LET IT GO FOR FREE TAKE IT MAKE IT YOUR OR MAKE THEM DEFEND IT.

Just an idea but I think I am on a new direction and have to keep considering this as adjustment. Especially the fact that compared to them I am playing maybe too tight and need to open up (A little bit) and punch a little more rather than dodge so much

I stuck to my standards (man I am tired of saying that) and lost again. I know they say that cold runs do occur and can last a while but this is what I am calling painful to do and to watch.

I sat again and tried to wait and play buy the book for the most part and remain social and polite. This is not accomplishing anything. Table was loose and over aggressive for the most part, and super stick. Multiple weak callers on all hands as usual, but is was three and four bet preflop a lot more than usual, and three bet weak on the flop over and over again. I can not catch a card and there is no bluff option. I have to show a hand of some type with three over callers on the river bets being the norm.

I have about three more sessions left like this and I will be close to broke but I am going to hang in and play poker at the bingo tables and see if anything I have read or think I have learned is even close to correct.

Session update numbers:

Sat with 200 played 6.25 hours cashed out at 0.00 cost in blinds was 150.00 I am loosing on average 2.6 BBs and hour right now. I have had a three session down run I know not uncommon but still frustrating and a bit depressing when you want and try to do well.

I have to admit this is not the way I intended for this process to start. It is what it is I guess and I have to get over it. I will not dwell on the past I will learn and move forward.

Since I did this last injury to my self I will learn a lesson and make what I think will be the appropriate adjustments and continue.

My prescription for healing. Medicine is nasty but I have to take it and let it do the work.

I am in heal mode now and until further notice I will be using what I have heard called and ABSOLUTE deck. This means I will only be able to play in the upper half of the deck to limit exposure to further damage and injury.

Position is a main component as it should always be.

UTG to +3: AA-TT AKs-JTs only

+4 to Bttn: AA-77 AKs-9Ts NO A6s A7s A8s A9s only suited aces with straight and flush combination options no flush only aces for now

Blinds are tight and especially due to position disadvantage. Small blind will be for the most part a cost of seating and big blind needs to be up there if I get raised or I have to sacrifice it a large percentage of the time.

Overall this will be a small ball style unless I am in position and in the top 10 hand range. I know that some will think this a waste of time but I need to be careful for a while and get some security pots back in with me.

We are about to see

Session Update: play for 6.75 hours Loss of 400.00 blinds paid for session138.00 loss per hour 68.00 BBs lost 49

A public statement of TILT....Hi my name is Moneedude and I am a callahollic. My addiction of choice is calling weak out of position and calling raises out of frustration. I want all the folks who are players to know

I PLAY BAD. I WENT ON TILT FULL BLOWN PAINFREE TILT.

I lost all patience and all self control when fish sucked out and donkeys kicked me over and over at Wild Horse Pass playing 4/8. It was a day from hell in the low limit tank. Once I was hit like three or four times I just fell in line and started chasing and praying and hoping I would get there like every one else.

I am not perfect and I am not saying anything about those who play 7/9 off out of position for three bets call the flop with two overs on it and go runner runner for a fullhouse. Or the 6/3s that called a raise from middle slot and said well I can't let you bully me with raises, even though I had not played a hand in 4 rounds. That is the the action I want from the hands I want I understand this.

I failed in my response and I failed in self control I failed because I know better.

I dropped 4 racks in 6 hours and this is my public statement of tilt.

I did it I hate to admit it and I hope posting this will embarrass me enough not to do it again for a great long long while.

The game did not beat me I DID.

Honesty sucks.....

I can heal it will take a while and I have to be extra vigilant to do it but I will put together a heal plan and move on fluctuation is a part of the process and I did this so I can undo this I know.

I know that every one has read books and internet post and all the information that is out there so why am I going to post this? I have no reason I just feel like it I guess.

First off let me start off by saying "IF" you play basically well and understand the math and conceptual differences that need to be used in low limit rake games that do not apply and will not work in higher limit, no limit and tournaments this type of poker is a TRUE GRIND. Talk about what can be hours of nothingness and folds this is a game where patience is the utmost skill that is being practiced for the most part. After this the game is a great place to solidify mental and psychological strength. You will get mentally beat to hell playing this game I promise you and you will develop an ability to stay focused and balanced or you will get clobbered by the masses.

After that you learn to identify the nuts and learn to be brave enough to bet with smaller edges than would be feasible in larger games because the value charts in these games is so distorted it is amazing. The biggest comment I hear and read is that you can not beat these low limit callathons of cards. I do agree that it is difficult to beat these games especially since the house is also playing against you in an environment were the house is not really supposed to be involved (More on that later)..

As I have stated It is difficult as hell not impossible. You are not going to pay off your house and you will not quit your day job just yet, but you can put money in your bankroll and bank account that will allow you to do other things.

First off your bank account is yours to figure out I do not want to waste time on that. Your bankroll on the other hand is a good discussion to have and this is a good place to have it. You can add to and solidify a small and growing bankroll at these limits.

Low limit live with a full kill and a huge rake is a game of math, patience and a desire to drive yourself nuts.

I had everything I wanted at this table and then some. One of my favorite people J**ma (Asian woman), was at the table. She is loose as hell and sticky like gum on your shoe. I also had Mrstudders (older balding guy glasses and a bad stutter) emotional player and will tilt off. I had the mumble mouth mex tall dark hair and also sticky weak chaser player. all at the same table. J**ma is a good catalyst she will open up a table to flow llike water as she gets lucky and draws out others will follow suite and others will get mad and try and get even. J**ma plays poker like she plays slots money in and spin money in and spin. as she gets lucky she starts to straddle also when she gets wine in her or gets tired you can see it in here eyes. J**ma bets weak and with no regard to position or traffic if she has a pair or a draw or overcards chips will go into the middle. If she has an ace no kicker needed you will see raises regardless.

The mumblesmex and Mr. Studders call along and the table gets active. Pots are all over 80.00 to 100.00 dollars on average at a 4/8 game. I see what the table make up is and I know what to expect going in it will be spikey and I will be putting chips in for the ride. Overcalls galore and payoffs by three on the river will be average.

NO BLUFFS NO WEAK CHASES. BIg pairs are down in value at this table middle suited connectors even on gap bigs and middles will go up in value. Position is super important as there will be few if any free cards and few cheap draws. multidraw hands will need to be value bet on the come and get paid. Courage and call downs will be a little higher with medium hands as more players will be betting weak hands stronger and not paying a care about the board they will be playing THEIR cards overall. Draw outs will be much higher at this table as more will stay longer and go up hill harder.

So I know what to expect and whom to expect it from and why. I enter this fully aware. This is a group I have had great nights against in the past. I understand it will be spiky but profit potential is huge.

THE DECK DID NOT CO OPERATE at all.......

positionally aware I did not enter weak early and I did not try to bully with early slot raises. Limping with big suited broad-ways and expecting the two and even three bets from middle and late missing flops completely or flopping good draws that did not develop. Straight draw with two overs and a backdoor flush or Flush draws with two overs and a back door straight these are the hands I knew I wanted and got some but turn cards and rivers did not come through on this night.

late and middle was same way not over aggressive did not need to be they were building pots on their own. Big pairs needed set help or call down and see with three and four two every turn and three to a river call.

I stayed cool got killed early down three racks in the storm of chips. Knew one or two would put me at even and three would start profit. Earned one rack back stuck to my game plan and finally had to give up.

I started thinking about money and being down more than I should have and started getting tired 7 hour session was enough I admitted a down session and will wait for another opportunity.

I am not sure exactly how to do this so be patient and give polite advice if you have any. I am not sure whether I am supposed to update my blog with comments on the same topic or make each entry a new post with a linking title like chapters or article guides. So I am making a new post for each update.

I am ready to start laying it all out for the eyes of the world and will prepare for the fall out. Before I get crazy I think I should update on where I am so far. I am going to post a section of an excel spreadsheet I developed and use to track myself. It is fairly basic and has a chart that graphs my play as well. I am not an excel pro but it gets the job done for me.

Here goes so we will all be up to date before my next post.

So far I have played a total of 29.75 hours in 5 sessions and I am down -285.00 dollars or 35.6 BBs I am showing an average loss of 1.20 BBs per hour or -9.58 dollars an hour. This total includes last nights session on 6/30/13 which I will be posting about next as we get caught up.

I am going to try and link a copy of my game journal to this as well. Also like I said I am posting sessions in diary form on Hendon Mob and Card Player that can be viewed

I have been playing low limit for a long while now so it is hard to decide were to start. I am not doing a book or anything so I do not want go into all the book learned information. Although I have learned a great deal about low limit games and strategy from books.

I am going to play 10,000.00 hands of low limit poker that will take approximately 286 hours of play averaging 35 hands per hour if I play an average of 6 hours a day it will take around 47 days. (This is a very short time span for poker I know but it is only an experiment) I usually am able to play 3 days a week so this will mean about 16 weeks of time to complete for overall review.

Next for fun and challenge a goal setting which I know is wrong but too bad. I will say that since this is an experiment the below information is my statement of hypothesis

I am going to hypothesize that I can average a profit of 1.5 big bets per hour. I have reduced this from two big bets an hour do to huge rake and fluctuations at low limit tables I know occur. This will mean an earning of $3,400.00 playing 4/8 limit holdem I know it is almost a 4 month time period and that is less than $1,000.00 a month and I can make that or more working at Quick Trip as a part time job but that is not reason behind this experiment.

Also as in most scientific areas there will be secondary and spin off experiments conducted. In poker these are very critical they will include but not be limited to

Image experiments as to which image at the table is best for me and most comfortable to adopt while I play. I am of the belief that a fun and loose exterior image with a tight and fairly aggressive true interior will be most profitable. Meaning I ma going to talk the talk of an loose and action based player but I will not really walk the walk.

I will also be adjusting hand ranges as they correspond to position and table action. In low limit they are much different than any other game the math is much different overall. (More on this later)

Player information will be gathered and I will see if it helps at all as I encounter certain adversaries on regular basis. Player log I have already developed and use so I will introduce this information sooner than later into the mix here.

So now I have defined the experiment and the goals as well as the time table that the experiment will run I have also defined how results will be logged and posted as the experiment is being conducted.

I think we are ready to begin.

OK enough about all the scientific blabber I am not really that much of a tight ass. I was just getting some ideas down and got carried away. I am going to play and try to earn money in a controlled and traceable manner to move up in limits and put money in the bank for disposable income I am not trying to pay my bills or be a professional. Just earn some extra spending cash and have fun doing it.

We have all heard that low limit poker is the worst. If you want to play poker and make a profit you have to play higher limits or no limit right? Well I am going to go WAY out on a limb and say NO, that is not true.

I can and will make a profit playing low limit casino poker in a live environment.

I am going to attempt to prove it also. I am going to do as many before me have and take up internet space by blogging and posting my results on this and other web sites. I am going to expose myself to ridicule and all manner of judgment in an attempt to actually make my game better so that I can move up and out of the lower limit doldrums once and for all while proving some longs standing opinions as not completely accurate and some as even false I hope.

I promise that during this little exerciser I will follow certain guidelines:

I will post all pre-session plans and strategies

I will post all post-session updates as soon as possible in blog form and tracker information

I will be completely honest on results as well as emotional stages, feelings, and observations.

I will post winnings, promotional profits and expenses separate to establish as true a picture of profitability and cost overall as I can.

It is in my opinion easy to post winnings and not cover cost associated with regular play such as food, gas, and extra cost like special tips and tokes that are also part of the regular game environment.

Like business cost must be covered before we can claim profit from an en devour.

I will keep and post records that are as detailed and accurate as I know how.

I will post excel sheets and other tracker information as well as I know how or can learn how.

This is for fun and profit hopefully, but remember if you do follow or comment, at this point for me I have to approach this as a game or hobby with profit and growth potential or I would go insane taking it too seriously too fast and burn myself out. I love this game too much to risk this.

I have already posted a diary on the Hendon mob site that is available for review and ridicule and I also post on Card Player Magazine in blogs and diary post that match these.

As with any other form of poker I play there are adjustments to be made and strategies that work for this environment. As a poker player my challenge is and will always be to identify and adjust to the environment and game structure I am in at the moment.

So this is the base of what I am going to attempt to achieve. My motivation is purely self righteous I know. I do this more for me than for anything else and I admit it freely.

What else is all this blogging stuff for other than to put our opinions out there and feel like we are a part of something and that we matter when we really don't in the grand scheme of things.

Here goes nothing from a real nobody with out anything else do do.

Well, it has been a while since I did any of this. I am not good at it but I do enjoy it. I think it helps me and helps my game (some times). Most of all it is a way for me to talk to me about my game and how I feel and what I think I need to do.

Every now and again I get some good feedback and most of the time not.

You see I am a low limit-limit player and we are all fish and idiots according to most internet blogs and forums, because we can not make any money and we will never beat the huge rakes we face from the greedy ass casinos we are forced to play in right now.

Before I get too far into this

For me poker is a hobby with profit and growth potential I take it very seriously as a student and want to do well and grow but it is still a hobby and a game for the most part.

I live in Arizona we DO NOT HAVE NO LIMIT CASH POKER as an option of play. No limit tournaments only. Cash games are limit and spread limit. Spread limit has really started opening up in the last year or so and I think I have some strong options to shoot for here. 2-100 spread and 3-300 are the most common games right now in that structure. We will go into that deeper later like it or not...

YES WE DEAL WITH A HUGE RAKE AND YES IT MAKES PROFIT VERY DIFFICULT (NOT IMPOSSIBLE AS OTHERS SAY)

IN THE THREE MAIN CASINOS I HAVE ACCESS TO ALL GAMES ARE FULL KILL WITH A RAKE. 3 DOLLARS TO THE PLAYERS PROMOTIONAL FUND AND 3 DOLLARS TO THE HOUSE IN A 20 DOLLAR HAND. All the casinos play a jackpot poker for the limit and spread limit games and run a spectrum of promotions so we can thank them for giving us our own money back that they take from us any way. ( I have opinions and issues with this also but it is the world I have to work in for now more on this later also)

I play 4/8 limit holdem for the main source of my game and will play 3/6 also if I am down or need to heal a little bit. I am playing a (Little) 2-100 spread limit and getting ready to step into the 8/16 limit game as well as studying the 4/8 Omaha hi/lo game as other options.

As a tournament player I try to play 2 or 3 a week right now depending on bankroll and scheduling. Most are 60 dollar buy ins and average 110 players paying out the top ten places. These are what I call speed tournaments as the rounds are only 15 minutes long and they become shoot outs by round 4 or 5. Most are over and done in less than 4 hours and most players play for the chop at around 8 players on average. Rarely if ever is a tournament played to heads up and end..

What is going to follow is going to be writings of my own experiences and my own opinion about the casino poker in Phoenix and Scottsdale Arizona as it relates to me. My exposure is to this area right now so this is what I will be writing on.

I am a student of the game and a love the overall ups and downs and even the frustration it makes me want to do more and do better so here I go. I know this is a risk and I will get all kinds of crap back and forth probably but who cares.

as a wise man once told me: DON'T JUDGE ME YOU DON'T KNOW MY LIFE (This is an attempt at humor do not freak out).

Sign in to follow this  
×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.