Saturday, March 27, 2004

Friday night report 

The night started out promising enough. Nice weather. Left work early to sit on the deck and watch the sun-dresses float on by. The plan was to hang out then head over to Landow's for some pot limit hold'em. Russ from Philly was coming down with his wife and the night had all the makings for a good time.

Then Landow made the mistake of the night. He invited the neighbor and his friend to join us. That would fill out the table at 10 players. Two problems with these guys. Neither had any idea how to play and they were both piss ass drunk. Drunk and very loud. They were both sitting to my left, yapping loudly and not paying any attention. Add the ear-piercing bark of Landow's dog with the fact that I wasn't getting any cards made the first 2 hours the worst poker experience of my life. Ever.

The only upside of having these two knuckle draggers at the table was that they never folded. They would call any bet. All you had to do was get any kind of hand that made sense and you were getting paid. BigMike pulled a huge pot off of smackass #1 where he was calling huge raises all the way down. Morons. I believe Russ pulled another huge pot from the other guy setting him up as the big winner for the night.

Once tweedle-dee and tweedle-dumbass left to pass out, the game settled down and we finally got to play some good poker. I had already broken my vow of playing sober.

The most memorable hand for me, of course, was one that I lost. My goal of the night was to take all of Lewey's chips, then his car payment, and his mortgage payment if I could. Finally I got a good starting hand. Pocket jacks in EP. Raises, calls, three players. Flop comes out K-x-K. I open but not a huge bet. Two callers. I think I'm looking pretty good. My first problem starts here. Quiet Hiedi to my left called that bet and I thought she folded. No big deal. Turn shows a rag. Bet, call, call. I've got to be good at this point. River brings a third King. I make a pretty good size bet. Heidi calls. Now Lewis starts his little act. Lawrence effing Olivier if you ask me. He looks at me and says he doesn't think I have the 4th King. He's right, I've just got kings over jacks. So he bets the pot. I've got enough to cover the bet. After some thought, I call. Then Hiedi calls and I realize I'm probably hosed. Sure enough, newbie Heidi flips over pocket Q's. Right as I'm about to spew forth a creative string of profanity, Lewey flips over the 4th King. !@#$^. He friggin' did it to me again. I wanted Lewey on my right tonight and he bit me in the ass. Again.

The dumbest hand of the night was a heads up battle between myself and Landow. I was BB with two ugly cards and checked to the flop. Flop was nothing pretty itself and I paired 5's. Landow makes a small bet which I call and everyone else folds. The turn and river were uneventful. After the river, Landow makes a nice size bet. I've got nothing but a pair of 5's and no kicker. So what else to do? All-in. Stupid stupid stupid. Landow stares me down and I try not to crap my drawers. It's late enough that I probably won't buy back in and I'm not ready to stop. Eventually Landow calls. I tell him I've got crap, and he flips over big slick. My small pair holds and I double up. Here's the question. Which was the dumber move, my all-in with my tiny little pair or Landow for calling with nothing but ace high?

After 6 hours, I finished even again. Mrs. CantHang and Russ were the big winners of the night with Hiedi and the two mouthbreathers losing the most.

It was great to hang out with Russ and his wife. After reading my blog for awhile, Russ was able to see that I was telling the truth. I am truly horrible at this game.


Playing on Party this morning, I'm down a little with the maniac and fishies eating me up. The lag has been horrible so far. Hopefully it will get better.

Just hopped on a table with Pauly. It should be fun.

More later. Poker now.


Update. After watching Pauly take some horrendous beats, he comes back strong with a huge, 3-way pot. Beating big slick with pocket Q's and flopping the set.


Friday, March 26, 2004

Random thoughts 

Is there anything more glorious the morning after a good bender, then waking up, feeling the effects, and realize you still have 2 hours before the alarm goes off?

Nothing can make me feel bad today. 70 degrees and sunny in the greater Philly area. The flowers are blooming, the birds are chirping, and a brand new bottle of Southern wants to head out to the deck for some outdoor recreation.

Last night was another stellar blitzkrieg of booze and friends. With the weather warming, I'm getting to see a lot of friends that tend to hibernate during the winter. I also met what might possibly the dumbest person on the planet. She was a very nice girl. Funny? Absolutely. But good god, this was one of those people that can suck the IQ right out of the room. I am dumber today for the experience.

Another marathon weekend of poker and life is good. We'll probably start at Landow's tonight and finish up with 2 tournaments on Sunday. I should be nice and warmed up by the Sunday night tourny on Planet. I'm actually going to try something really radical this weekend. I'm going to play sober. Alright, I'm going to try and play sober. Especially on Sunday. I have a live tournament starting at noon at a local bar (god help me) and I need to be somewhat coherent for the Sunday night tourny.

I'm fairly confident that I'll be able to reach my goal Sunday night. I don't want to be the first one out. And I don't want to be that guy who gets ragged on for a bad beat on someone else's blog.

So who's the celeb playing Sunday night? Anyone besides Felicia know yet?

More posts to come today. Had to get my post-drunken rant out there early. Like cleansing the soul.

Good day.


Thursday, March 25, 2004

Prayer for the Dying 

HDouble at Card's Speak put an incredible comment in the last post.

Hint: give up the booze for a few days when the phlegm gets thick.

Shall I cut off a limb or maybe just stop breathing while I'm at it? Eh, I drink Southern, that's almost the same as NyQuil.


I felt like a festering pile of you know what. No bar last night. I can't re-read Pauly's book because I left it locked in my desk at work. The wifey is crashing early so no 'quality' time. What's a guy to do?

Two choices, re-read Mitch Albom's "5 People You Meet in Heaven" or play some poker. Not that it was much of a choice. If I had to read that big piece of cotton-candy, fluff-filled, overly-predictable piece of filth written by that no talent ass clown, I'd poke my own eyes out. (Note: I was forced to read it for a book club).

Ah, so poker is was. Back to the $25 NL ring game. And an incredibly uninteresting 2 hour session it was. I pulled a little money off at the end.

I did figure out that my lucky hand is AJ. Nearly the exact hand played out that I described in an earlier post. A short stack went all in with A9o (last time in was AT) and I beat him on the river after he got his 9 on the turn. At least this player didn't go ballistic.

Is it me or are the fish on Party getting very lippy? Like the poker blogging community, do they have a little fish blog community and the latest strategy advice is to talk trash non-stop? I agree with Grubby. I never chat. Why give away information for free? But I chatted back last night with some of my best stuff. I'm waiting for my hand history before I post it. I was slapping him with chat and taking his cash at the same time.

Like any useful session, I was able to learn some more things about my play that need improvement. I am not playing position correctly at all. I'm playing EP and LP pretty much the same. Too loose in EP and too tight in LP. Oddly enough, PokerTracker tells me that 3 off the button is my most profitable. Go figure.


It must be a coincidence that on the same day I email Felicia telling her I can play in the Sunday tournament, she announces that she has a poker celeb playing.

Now I always appreciate a good compliment but I'm not a celebrity. And anyone who's played with me will tell you I'm barely a poker player.


To complicate matters for me on Sunday, I'm playing in a live tournament at a local bar Sunday afternoon. Booze and poker. Just a head's up for my play at the Planet tournament.

Booze = Loose playing

But I can't wait to play Sunday night. I need to show that my final table finish at the last tournament wasn't a fluke.


Wednesday, March 24, 2004

My pain and misery 

Damn all the bloggers out there with the flu. Through a secret government plot, they've discovered a way to transmit the flu bug via the internet. Or it could just be BigMike walking around the office like a zombie for the last 3 days sneezing on everything.

Last night started on it's usual pace and was destined to be another classic. I felt the cold coming on yesterday morning but thought nothing of it. I'm used to feeling like crap at work. It's natural. But after a measly 4 hours at the bar, my head felt like it was being squeezed in a vice and I had to go home.

So now I have all the effects of a hangover without any of the fun to deserve it.


On a whole different note, if you are an IS application developer, do me a favor and jump off the nearest bridge.


RSS Feed 

I'm currently in the process of setting up RSS Feed for my blog using Feedster.

Much thanks for Jeremy at loveandcasinowar.com for the heads up.


Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Ivan the Russian Cab Driver stole my blog 

Well, that's not exactly true. What is true is that I have absolutely no stories today concerning poker or booze. Amazing but true. I had every intention of sitting down at my online 'fishing' hole and filling up the fish box. But when I got home with the wifey from work, I had a nice little present sitting at the front door. Pauly was nice enough to send me a draft copy of his first novel, Jack Tripper Stole My Dog. So much for my plans for the night. Other than a bit of time to enjoy dinner with Mrs. CantHang, I read straight through until I was finished. I didn't put it down until 12:30ish. I accidentally woke up the wifey when going to bed and she asked me why I stayed up so late reading. This coming from a woman who has been so caught up reading, that she once put a book down with only an hour left until the alarm was set to go off.

I thoroughly enjoyed the stories of Ivan the Russian Cabdriver. I would love to write a review but I'm afraid my heavy-handed abuse of the English language would not do it justice. Pauly has two links in his archives with excerpts from the novel.

November 2002
December 2002

These come from his Truckin' blog which is a monthly collections of Short Stories, Saga's, and Tales from the Road.

Check them out. Great stuff.

I plan on re-reading JTSMD again on Wednesday.

Tuesday = Boozeday so hopefully my creative juices will be flowing better tomorrow.


While I'm pimping without conscience, here are the 6 other blogs you need to read on a regular basis. The other's listed on the right are great blogs, but these are the ones I started reading at the beginning and I still read them on a daily basis.

Guinness and Poker - Iggy is the godfather of the poker blogging community (or PJK, Poker Journal Keepers). I read his article on PokerSavvy.com and the rest is history. Check out the article for a much better list of bloggers. He has huge, Guinness fueled posts about poker. And I can tell you first hand, if he mentions or links to your site, look out for the traffic.

FeliciaLee - Felicia has an endless supply of great posts about live play. If you can't learn from just reading her posts, you probably should head back to gin rummy.

Card's Speak - HDouble writes a ton of posts with great information about playing online and live. Hank is even willing to help newbie moron's like myself. Just one hint, if he sends you a link, buyer beware.

PokerGrub - Grubby has so much data and info on his site that you can't help but improve just by watching and learning how real good players work. More importantly, The Hammer was invented but Grubby and is quickly becoming a household term.

TheFatGuy - Scott has a ton of good poker and non-poker posts. But always a good read and I check for updates everyday.

MeanGene - Gene is running for President of the United States. Enough said? He's a great writer and writes commentary on everything related to poker.


Again, I read the rest of the links on the right at least every other day and they'll get pimps later on. But if I only have time for a couple of blogs during the day, these are 7 that I don't miss.


Monday, March 22, 2004

News Flash!! 

Thousands of rats now homeless. News at 11.


Notes from a new Party player 

"If you can't spot the sucker in the first half hour, then you are the sucker."
Rounders, 1998

Poor Landow. After taking all my money on Friday, he still seems to be having a problem playing low limit on Party. I talked him into getting an account and try his hand at low-limit (all the sharks can thank me later). He's feeling the general frustration that we all feel with the bad beats and fishy betting. I told him to hang in there, play solid, and wait for it to turn around. Better players than us have been frustrated.

After reading my post "10 Things I Think I Know", he passed along the 10 things he's learned since he hopped on Party.

Now if it doesn't turn around, he should give me a call and make a denotation to the AlCantHang Home for Wayward Women.

"We're gonna need a bigger boat."
Brody, Jaws (1975)


10. If the flop is 2-5-6 rainbow, chances are I have AK suited in my hole

9. If the flop is A-K-J, chances are I have pocket 3's

8. If, by some miracle, the board shows 4-9-5-7-5, and I have pocket 4's, someone else stayed in with 5-4. (ed. note - huh? they always stay in with unsuited connectors)

7. If, after the turn, I am holding two high pair, chances are someone is calling my bets to the river on nothing but an inside straight draw. 90% of the time, they hit it.

6. I've learned that two pair, no matter how high, is a complete suckers bet because odds are that someone will make three of a kind on the river.

5. I've learned I SUCK at online poker.

4. I've learned that the computer monitor cannot act as a medium to the other plays on the table, so when I scream "WHY ARE YOU STILL IN THE HAND!!", no one hears me but my dog.

3. I realized I am not much of a fisherman, unless we are fishing for bluefish out in the Atlantic Ocean, but, in fact, I am the fish, hook me, reel me in and serve me as sushi!

2. In 6 hours at the Borgata, I did not see as many full boats and high-end straights as I have in 2 hours of online play. Something not quite right about that.

1. Put me at a real live table, I'll rake my share of pots (just ask MikeJ and Doogie who I can personally thank for paying my mortgage this month), but put me at an online table, and the only raking I will do is out in my yard!

Give me a clay chip and two real cards in my hand to a keyboard and monitor any day of the week.


So if you'd like to play on the same table as Landow on Party, send a big cashier check and I'll give you his Party screen name. Pre-tagged.


I'm taking over/under bets on the amount of time it will be between the time I publish this post and when Landow shows up at my office for a little 'heart to heart'. 30 minutes.


Sunday, March 21, 2004

Know when to walk away... 

I should have just gotten up from the table early on Friday and called it a night. There was a good basketball game on, I was still in the running for Pauly's bracket pool, and there was plenty of booze in the house.

What was this bad omen?

Portent, noun
1) An indication of something important or calamitous about to occur

Now what could put fear in the heart of someone with strong character?

Landow was nice enough to bring along a present for me. Her name was Stacy. A fine young lass with zero poker skills, money to burn, and just looking to hang out and drink while playing. I think she was my Poker God in human form and feeling ornery.

We had only been playing for a couple of hours and I was managing to tread water despite not having a single decent hand to that point. The deal moves to the lovely Stacy. When dealing my second hole card, she accidentally flips it. Ace of clubs. Someone immediately calls a mis-deal and starts mucking the cards. The hand is dead, nothing I can do about it. But I make matters worse. Just like Mel Gibson in Maverick, I know what the other hole card is. "Don't look!", Landow tells me. But I have to, it's calling me. Sure enough, Ace of spades.

Not a big deal in the long run but for me, a very bad omen. In two hours, that was my first ace of any kind and my first pocket pair. I counted 3 pocket pairs the rest of the evening (6 hours), the highest were 10's, and all beaten soundly.

After that I had some horrible beats that I still can't talk about. Lewey is temporarily banned from any table I might sit at. I should have seen the omen for what it was and called it a night. I had 16 hours scheduled for the next day. No harm leaving my own game a little early.


When all of that occurred on Friday, Big Mike brought up his story from the Taj over the summer. Mike received the ultimate GET OUT omen from Mr. PG (Poker God).

Myself, BigMike, Landow, and Caucci hit the Taj on a Saturday afternoon for some 3/6 HE. BigMike gets seated second at a table that should have put the fear of God in him right off the bat. A player at the table had some sort of 'episode' and went completely ape shit. It took forever just to get him away and calm everything down.

After a couple of hours playing, Mike looks down at cowboy's. Mike's raise is called by two players and the flop comes out K-A-K. I can't say if Mike actually crapped his drawers but there was a definite stink in the cardroom at that time. EP is a young man who bets out, MP is Mr. Nice Old Guy who calls, and Big Mike raises. Callers all around. The turn shows another A. Mike is a little concerned but figures this will help. If anyone is holding an ace, they will bet the crap out of their ace high boat. EP bets, MP calls, BigMike raises. Call all around again. Now Mike knows he has it. Anyone with an ace would have raised. River is a rag. Same round of betting. When Mike's raise gets to Nice Old Guy, he smiles at Mike as he calls. "You can thank me in a second". The old guy had pocket rockets, ace high boat on the flop, quads on the turn and never raised once. Never!

Mike shakes Nice Old Guy's hand, laughs at the young guy who never saw either hand coming down the pike, and staggers away from the table with his chips. He catches me at my table before heading out to the lobby. He was in complete shock. When I found him afterwards, he was holding a lit cigarette with one big ash hanging off the end.

I asked him why he didn't stick around and try to win his money back. He stated simply that if he couldn't win a hand with quad cowboys on the flop, someone was telling him to get up and leave. Oddly enough, Mike walked out with a crapload more than I did that day.


After a long two-day marathon session of poker, I ended on the plus side by staying solid and reading the other players. I'm getting much better at figuring out patterns and tells. I even won a buck from BigMike by guessing his pocket pair after everyone had folded.

It was a great weekend of poker and drinking. I don't want to calculate the volume of SoCo consumed this weekend but I can tell you that the Philip Morris Co. won't be going out of business anytime soon.

We topped off the weekend by going to a new Japanese Fusion restaurant (huh?). Sushi bar was all I needed to hear. $15 all you can eat. Good god. The sushi is excellent but they've only been open for a short time. I guess this is their way of drumming up business. But after the 6 of us were done, either they are going to stop the special or blacklist us.


Coming tomorrow, Landow's response to my "10 Things I Think I Know"

Thanks for stopping by.


Short Sunday morning recap 

It's 10:30am and I just got up after 3 hours of sleep to take Mrs. CantHang to brunch. Luckily for me, my bankroll is up for the weekend after the horrendous Friday night session.

In lovely Oxford, I managed to nearly triple my buy-in with some decent cards and big moves at huge pots. Since it was FatAss Bob's birthday (and house), we let him win also. All this with a "fish in a barrel" session at a $25 NL Party table during a break. I turned $25 into $55 in an hour. So even after a nasty start, I finished up very nicely by the end.

More to come later if anyone actually cares.


My ESPN bracket pool is on life support and they're about ready to pull the plug. !$#%!$^! Stanford. I knew they were overrated and still picked them to go to the Final Four. Idiot.