Thursday, February 18, 2010


I grew up with Lego.

This is NOT the Lego I grew up with.

My oldest son participated in Lego Robotics this year and he loved it.  I expected both sons will do it next year.

How awesome is this?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

I lied

I did. I lied.

Last week I said we'd be back to playing the PokerSlut Tour this week, but alas, we won't be.

Some stupid little holiday is interfering with my poker. 'Nuff said.

So, go watch some of the Olympics with some take out and snuggle up to whatever floats your boat.

PokerSlut Tour will return next week. Yeah, I'm sure. I already checked. No, really.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Nexus One

This may very well be my next phone.   Who wouldn't want one after seeing these videos?

The PokerSlut Tour has the night off tonight so you enjoy your football game without the added burden of playing poker at the same time. We'll see you next week - same time, same place.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Rush Poker

Yeah, I know, you've heard all about it. 

You have probably even played some of it.  I don't blame you, it's very addictive.

It didn't take long for it to evolve from 'regular' poker. 

'Regular' full ring poker is divided between the multi-tabling nits, the occasional lagtard with a dash of just plain old donk.  Anybody who has been playing poker long enough has a HUD and database tracking all of these players.

Rush poker throws all of that out the window. 

A new table of players for EACH AND EVERY HAND.  Fold this hand and the next hand is only seconds away.  Your HUD is worthless. 

The feature that draws the multi-tabling nits to Rush poker is also the part that makes it so tempting the action junkies: MORE HANDS, FAST!

This first adjustment I noticed was a huge increase in 3betting.  It didn't take long for people to decide that it was worth sticking around in late position to try to steal the blinds.  With a higher than normal likelihood that players have already folded, it is worth stealing the blinds.  A natural response to this is the blinds re-stealing.  There is no option to pre-fold from the BB so you have to stick around anyway.  If you can re-steal why not go for it?  That kicks it up a notch, doesn't it?

After seeing a higher than normal 3-bet coming from the blinds I decided that I would much rather 'steal' from middle position than late position and do it with a lot bigger range of hands.  Most of the players at the Rush tables are set mining or waiting for premium hands and many are auto-3 betting AK.  It is so easy to throw away my J9soooooooooted to a 3 bet from a player behind me but you can bet that I'm going to open with it if it is folded to me past the first few seats.

At this point I'm opening just about any pair from any position, AK, AQ, AJ and even AT especially if it is suited.  I am also opening a lot of suited connectors and gapped connectors from earlier position than you would normally do this at a normal full ring table.  Late position raises get little respect from the blinds but middle position get more respect.  The middle position is the new hijack.  Is it getting fun yet?

When Rush Poker first appeared I read a comment to the effect that players are opening wider than you think and 3-betting tighter.  I try to keep that in mind when I'm considering calling a 3-bet.  Mostly it's just easier to throw away a hand and wait for a better spot that try to play the out of position (I treat 3-bets from the blinds differently than from players who have position on me).

To quote my long lost buddy Snarf, "it's never been so easy to ditch AQ to a 3-bet."  He was referring to Rush poker tables.  But you can bet he's 3-betting the snot outta AQ from the blinds to a late position raise.  I know I am:

Rush Poker will keep evolving over time. I have no doubt that new tricks will appear in the coming weeks.  Will it continue to attract and hold players?  I sure hope so.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Monday, February 01, 2010

HEM Preflop Hands

Are you running bad?  Getting cold decked?

Oh sure, we all think we are running cold - never getting primo hands.  The challenge is actually proving (or disproving) this.

Enter Holdem Manager.

I was snooping around in HEM one day and found the Preflop Hands chart.  For some reason they default selection when you open this page is to [*] 3 bet pre but if you change it to all hands (after selecting the session/time frame you want) you can see just how you ran.

According to HEM the average frequency for AA,KK,QQ,AK hands is 2.6% - anything above that is 'running good' and below is 'running bad'.  Oddly, I have found no correlation between profitable sessions and percentage of 'good' hands. Often you find that your big hands win small pots and small hands can win big pots.

Yesterday (Saturday) I played the WBCOOP event.  I really wish they would structure these events so you don't end up with so many dead stacks at the beginning of the event.  It isn't unusual to find yourself at a table with one or two other players - absurdly aggressive players.  It takes a long time to finally get to a full table of active players.  The event plays out backwards: shorthanded or headsup with deep stacks to start then moderate stacks at a 4 -6 handed table followed by full handed tables with short stacks and HUGE stacks.

I barely managed to survived to the money telling myself the whole time that I ran so very cold when it came to cards.  Once I hit the money I shipped my pathetic stack with A8 and doubled through A3.  I chipped up a little more but only lasted a few spots into the 2nd payout level.

That's when I fired up HEM to see if my perception of running cold was indeed reality.  Snuffy was railing me in the later stages of the event.  I was telling him my hole cards.  It was obvious to us that I was getting crappy cards.

It looks like it wasn't just my imagination: 42o, 32o 94o, 74o, 65o & 97o were my most frequent hands - Poker Grump would have pwned!  Sure makes it easy to fold when those are the hands you are dealt.

Being dealt a pairs is a .5% probability, offsuit hands are .9%, and suited hands .3% likelihood.  Granted, this is a small sample size and you really can't expect to run exactly to expectation during any given session of poker.  That said, it would be nice to run closer to expectation than I did.  (Yes, this is me whining about running bad - get over it).

I supposed I should just be content that I went as deep as I did considering the hands I was getting.  But a part of me recalls the famous quote, "Real poker players don't need cards!"  Yeah, uh huh.  Sure.