Sunday, January 23, 2011

That's poker

I was following a poker blog a few years ago where someone said he was quitting the game - he said he simply could no longer take "the sheer ridiculousness of it all". He stayed true to his word - that was the last post on his blog for months, until I finally deleted it from my reader.

Today was one of those types of sessions for me - a dual table Rush session to squeeze in a quick 1000 hands before football takes up the rest of my day. I couldn't win a hand to save my life. Rush poker has become a three-bet haven - it's barely worth even trying to steal blinds anymore (unless you're ready to start 4bet bluffing). I was dealt the hard-to-pay ace-queen about 100 times. Ace-king whiffed every single flop. Pocket kings was up against pocket aces for I believe the 6th time this month (though I avoided stacking myself again).

Every hand won was met by an equally large or larger hand lost, usually within seconds. I knew I was losing and there was nothing I could do about it.

Redemption doesn't always come: today it came in the form of one of those sheer ridiculous hands my fellow blogger got hit with right before he quit poker. A 5/5 raised from under the gun. Smelled like aces. I called with pocket twos in the small blind - implied odds galore if I hit my set on someone so tight. And then I did - a 258 rainbow flop - meaning his aces, kings, queens and even jacks had little to fear from me. I checked. The big blind (who also called preflop) donked out into the preflop raiser, who flat called. I popped it up. the big blind flat called this popup (uh-oh #1), then the original raiser minraised my raise (uh-oh #2). Well, sorry, I'm not folding a set for 100 big blinds, alarms might be sounding, warning bells, foghorns - too bad. This ain't Omaha, it's Texas Holdem, and a set on a dry board is a monster. I stuck my stack in. Big blind got the message and folded, and UTG called and revealed his pocket eights for set over set.

This was to be my last hand of the session - when you lose a bunch of small pots, then hit kings to aces (pretty sure at least), and then get set-over-set - the poker gods have told you all they need to.

The 2 on the river, giving me my one-out winner - was not met with excitement or triumph. Just another head-shaker in a game that never fails to make you question it - the sheer ridiculousness of it - over and over.

I left the tables up 20 big blinds, a positive session redeemed by the last deuce in the deck.

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