Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Can I Go With You?

Good morning everyone.  This is your ramble coming to you on a Wednesday since I wanted to vent about poker on Monday.  As I suspected before I moved, now that I'm living in Las Vegas again, I could easily do a post about poker, sports betting, or random things today - there is just so much to write about...  This was the conversation that I had with three attractive girls who were all decked out in very revealing dresses as I was making my way to the parking garage at the Flamingo a few nights ago:

Closest Oncoming Attractive Girl: "Hi, what are you doing?"
Me:  "I'm heading home..."
Closest Oncoming Attractive Girl:  "Can I go with you?"
Me: (Smiling)  "No, I'm good, but I appreciate it.  Y'all have a good one..."

I've been back in the desert almost a whole month and I'm FINALLY propositioned...  :P  Continuing with this Las Vegas theme, I stopped by the Wynn a few nights ago to watch some of the no-limit poker action - as I was walking through the casino, I spotted a penny of the floor.  I don't know about you, but I didn't even think that pennies were allowed into the Wynn.  I was thinking that if I stopped to pick it up, I would probably be ridiculed by the wealthy people patronizing the establishment...  :)  Back to the Flamingo, right before I got propositioned, I saw a slot machine ticket for 27 cents that was laying by the abandoned row of slot machines - now I'm stopping for 27 cents...  :)  Anyway, I quickly found a machine to cash the ticket, and already laying in the change receptacle of the machine was 75 cents.  I bring this story up because it's the most success that I've ever had "playing slots"...  (I don't play slots, if you're new to the blog)  Around to gambling that I do participate in, I will have my complete breakdown of games that I'm betting on for this opening week on Friday, but I did want to include one Thursday night game, although I wouldn't bet your house on it.  I had mentioned previously that I would be watching the numbers this season on the overs/unders for the Washington State football games now that Mike Leach (formerly of Texas Tech) is now the head coach.   The number for the over/under on the Cougars game against BYU opened at 62, and if it stays in that range, I will include the over on a few of my two-dollar parlay tickets.  My first bad-beat of the day yesterday was discovering that the two-dollar parlay cards for football would not be available until Thursday evening (after having been previously informed by a few girls working the LVH sportsbook on Monday that they would be out on Tuesday).  Anyway, you can bet more than two bucks on these cards if you want, but I like grouping my bets together on these, taking cheap shots at the bigger money (even with a two dollar bet, hitting a 10-team parlay pays 800 to 1, or $1,600.00).  I have now placed a total of $45.00 in opening week bets on college and NFL games, but all but one of those parlay tickets includes NFL games, so even if it hit them, I won't be cashing them for a few weeks.  One thing that I've noticed driving around Vegas during the past week especially is how many people will operate their vehicles at night without their headlights on.  I attribute this to the fact that they don't turn them on when they're leaving the parking garages (which I do automatically, just because it's night), and then if they are in the vicinity of the Strip, there is so much neon around that they don't notice.  However, when they're driving on the streets leading away from the Strip, this becomes a potentially dangerous situation (not being able to see their dark-colored cars, you know, in the cases where they're driving dark-colored cars)...  TIDE Balls - yeah...  I was at the store a few nights ago (I was very busy a few nights ago, by the way), and I noticed 'TIDE Balls' on the shelf...  Evidently, pouring liquid up to a line in a cap has become a very difficult task, so TIDE has all of the detergent conveniently balled up so that you can just toss it into the wash (to be fair, TIDE wasn't the only company hawking these items, but just the most familiar one to me)...  Did you happen to see that my baseball team was BLOWN UP the other day?  Now the Red Sox have traded Youkilis, Gonzalez, Beckett, and Crawford this season (insert ominous music here)...  Have I mentioned yet how thankful I am that the football season is going to kickoff tomorrow night?  ;)  With the abundance of weekly poker freeroll tournaments now available in the desert, I am going to play in freeroll tournies Friday morning, Saturday afternoon, and Monday morning (by the way, who is scheduling tournaments at 9 a.m.?!)...  My television set automatically opens up on The Weather Channel whenever I power it up.  This morning I was treated to the sight of Jim Cantore and Al Roker trying to stand up in fifty mile-per-hour winds in the middle of a downpour while reporting on the hurricane that is heading into New Orleans.  My thing is, they have been telling us FOR DAYS that this hurricane was on the way, so WHY are they standing out IN THE MIDDLE of the freakin thing when it arrives?!  #brilliant  I actually left the t.v. there for a few minutes just to see if they would get blown over - c'mon people...  Alright, that's all I've got for right now, but have a great day and I'll see you again on Friday!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Fold Dummy?

"And I feel like I'm naked in front of the crowd, cause these words are my diary, screaming out loud, and I know that you'll use them, however you want to..."  -Anna Nalick- (Breathe - 2 AM)

Good morning everyone.  From the instant that I heard those lyrics by Anna they connected, and they have become very relevant since I began writing this blog.  I'm saying this to inform you that today you're getting a poker post and you'll be getting your ramble on Wednesday.  I had an extremely disappointing finish in my freeroll tournament yesterday, and I'm hoping that if I type it out here right now, it will help me to release it - I need to remember it like a fire burning in the pit of my stomach, but I need to let it go also...

Yesterday I played in the Riviera's weekly freeroll tournament.  There were 28 of us and the top 10 would be receiving $250.00 each (unless we reached some sort of 'chop' agreement).  A chop occurs when there in an agreement among all of the remaining players in a tournament to divide the prize pool in a different way than was originally intended.  The tournament had no entry fee (i.e., freeroll).

After more than 2 hours of playing, we had reached the final 14 players, and after this hand the blinds were going to be raised to 3,000/6,000.  I would have about 5 hands left before all of my remaining chips would automatically go into the pot as the big blind.  The girl three seats to my right went all-in.  I looked down to see A J suited on my turn.  Although a few moments earlier I had decided that I would try to wait it out and see if I could backdoor a 10th place finish or a chop, A J suited looked very good compared to the hands that I had been seeing, and I was no longer sure if I could limp to the finish line.  I had seen this girl call a shove earlier with A 5.  I pushed my chips all-in from the button.  The big blind flipped up his pocket fives when he folded.  The girl said that she was happy to see that fold by him when she flipped over her pocket threes.  The board obviously didn't bail me out, so I lost the race and finished in 13th place.  Yes, somewhere in the past few minutes, another player had busted out from the other table.  Right after I got knocked out, the other table had another all-in, and the 12th place finisher busted out.  So now the tournament was going to its first break, with only ELEVEN players remaining, and ten scheduled to get paid.

I promptly left because I did not want to stick around and hear AT THAT MOMENT that the remaining players were going to chop the $2,500.00 prize pool eleven ways.  I would be surprised to hear that they did not chop it, and even if they did play on, could I have survived FOUR MORE HANDS?  I took the long walk out of the back of the Riviera and it wasn't until I closed the door of my vehicle that I YELLED 'the word' - it was unplanned and I was surprised at how loudly it reverberated in my closed vehicle.  I had played one hand in the second round of the tournament and got everyone to fold preflop.  I had shoved A J from the small blind, only to be called by A J from the big blind (we got our chips back after the board ran out).  I had shoved my A K suited after a shove from the player before me, who had shoved his Q Q.  The flop came A K 10, but no jack showed up to help him.  And I played this hand, A J suited, and lost this race to 3 3...  EXTREMELY FRUSTRATING to finish with $0.00 instead of $250.00 (or whatever chop they agreed to, if they did so)...  Second guessing myself, would I have lasted, would I have busted, would they have chopped the prize pool twelve ways if I had folded, even if that meant giving just a little bit of money to 11th and 12th places???  Earlier in the tourney, when the girl mentioned above had a big stack and faced an all-in from the short stack to my left, she folded A Q face up because she likes the guy (this was before she had crippled her stack with the A 5 call) - that hand will stick in my memory also...  "I would have called anyone else" she said...

Anyway, poker is a lot of fun...  I am bracing for this weekend, when the football games on my parlay cards will CERTAINLY be just as entertaining as the action at the poker table.  "The hardest way to make an easy living..." Doyle said - well said Mr. Brunson.  I hope that all of you have a great day and I'll see you again on Wednesday with my ramble.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Let The Wagering Begin

Good morning everyone.  I guess that it is officially football season when the Red Sox blow a 6-0 lead and go on to lose 14-13 in extra innings (see, I miss a prediction every once in a while)...  My baseball team will need a minor miracle to reach the playoffs, and for that matter, the Orioles are still in the playoff race, so let's talk about...  FOOTBALL!  ;)

I moved back to the desert so that I could do a little sports betting (namely football) and play a little poker.  Well, we are now six days from the start of the college football season on Thursday, August 30th.  The NFL starts playing for real in twelve days on Wednesday, September 5th.  I have a half dozen refrigerator magnets that are already proudly displaying my first bets of the year (this makes it possible for me to look at all of my bets at once, and I am interested to know whether or not anyone else does this)...  Anyway, last weekend I put together about thirty-five dollars worth of parlay tickets on bets that I liked before any possible line-movement occurred.  When my beloved two-dollar parlay cards appear sometime early next week, I only plan on adding about another 20 bucks to the 35 already bet, keeping my wagering to a very minimal amount for the first week since no one has played for real yet.  The bets already posted on my frig were very sensible in that none of them consist of anything larger than a four-team parlay.  The 35 bucks that I have already bet could result in me getting 320 dollars back at the most.  The two-dollar parlay cards will all consist of collections of 5 to 10 bets.  I will do a 10-team parlay card every week in case I do have that week where all 10 of my top picks hit because the payout is 800-to-1, meaning a 1,600-dollar win for getting all 10 bets right.

There were three college and pro bets (each) that I wanted to jump on early before the lines moved.  An example of a line moving already (even since I did my betting last weekend) occurred on a game that I liked.  When I first hit town at the end of July, the Texans were seven-point favorites over the Dolphins.  Last weekend, Houston was listed as a 7 1/2 point favorite, and was one of the bets that I circled, but I didn't know how I felt about giving up the extra half-point over a touchdown.  Well now, the Texans are 8 1/2 point favorites on opening day.  I'm thinking that the Dolphins appearance on HBO's 'Hard Knocks' might be influencing people, but that is only my humble opinion...  :)  In the last week, Miami named rookie Ryan Tannehill as their starting quarterback for the regular season, and I'm sure that had some influence on the line movement during the week.

The three college bets that I have parlayed all have something in common:  they all involve powerhouse programs who are heavy home favorites in week one.  I took USC (-39) against Hawaii; Oregon (-35 1/2) against Arkansas State; and Ohio State (-22 1/2) against Miami (Ohio).  In my mind I pictured sellout crowds and a blood-hungry atmosphere in each stadium where these dominant teams will be looking to make me money next week...  :)  The games that I am currently looking to include for two-dollar action this week are these:  Michigan State (-7) over Boise State; Georgia (-37 1/2) over Buffalo; Texas (-29) over Wyoming; and Arizona (- 10 1/2) over Toledo, with all 4 of those favorites playing at home.  I think that I will cave and include Texas State (+37) @ Houston on at least one ticket just because the Bobcats are my team - go alma mater!!!  ;)

The NFL bets that I have already acted on are:  Giants (- 3 1/2) over Cowboys; Patriots (-6 1/2) over Titans; and Ravens (-6) over Bengals.  The Patriots are the only road team in those three bets.  As with the Ravens game, I also included Steelers/Broncos (under 44) on a few tickets as a "hedge game" (a game that if I choose to, I can bet the other side of if my previous bets on the ticket have all won, ensuring that I will make some money no matter what the outcome of the hedge game is)...  I like the Giants because Dallas has injury issues with their receivers and their offensive line (which I didn't like anyway) right now.  Being more than a week away and a primetime game, I personally wouldn't be suprised if the Giants get bet up to (-6) favorites by the time this one kicks off (and that would be a BIG line movement, but...).  New York was a three-point favorite at the end of July.  The Titans have named Jake Locker as their starter at quarterback over Matt Hasselback, and I would be playing Hasselback in a second if I was trying to win.  The Patriots have so much offensive firepower that I can easily see them getting a lead substantial enough to take Chris Johnson out of the game (because teams that are trailing tend to throw).  In the Ravens/Bengals game, the Ravens should have been playing in the Super Bowl last year if not for a dropped pass, and the Bengals no longer have all of their offensive weapons.  Where I think the Bengals are really hurting is at running back, where Cedric Benson is gone and his replacement, BenJarvus Green-Ellis, is currently injured.

As the college games get closer and closer to kickoff next week, we'll see if I can stick to 55 bucks in wagers for week one (which started at 50).  As the money I've already bet includes action on a number of NFL games, which won't be played for another week, I'll probably give myself some leeway if I like some other wagers.  That being said, I'd really like to keep my action centered on my favorite bets during this second time around in Las Vegas.

To all of my visitors who are coming here from Yahoo! Answers, please bookmark my site or add it to your favorites if you intend to continue following my picks throughout the season.  I will not be at the Yahoo! Answers site to notify people about my predictions as much as I was last year because I will be at the sportsbooks in the casinos watching all of the action on my bets and scouting the other games.  You can also follow me on the twitter link at the top of the page - I always tweet when I make a new blog entry.  I do appreciate you stopping by to read my predictions, regardless of whether you're here looking for good, solid, informative insight, or even if you're just here to laugh uncontrollably at my selections...  :)

I hope that all of you have a great weekend and I'll see you again on Monday!


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Lockdown Poker

Good morning everyone.  Plenty of poker to talk about, after a tease for my Friday entry.  I don't know when these "previews" started for my blog entries (actually, I know EXACTLY when these previews for my blog entries began - it happened as soon as I returned to Las Vegas)...  Anyway, I have placed my first football bets of the season, both college and NFL, so on Friday I will have some picks for you.  The total amount of money that I bet for the opening of both the college and NFL seasons will be relatively small because no one has played any real games to 'scout' yet (obviously), but I put together some parlays today in anticipation of some betting lines changing in the next couple of weeks.  An example of this is the opening game between the Steelers and the Broncos.  The Broncos came out as 1 1/2 point favorites when betting opened, but the line is now a "pick 'em" - Peyton Manning has been throwing interceptions in the preseason, more than touchdowns to this point, which I am sure has contributed to this movement.  I read somewhere that someone thought that Denver was taking a huge risk by signing him - hmmm....  Anyway, more about this stuff on Friday...

This weekend I decided to try a little "experiment" at the poker tables.  I am sure that I have already mentioned that now is a GREAT TIME to be a poker player living in the desert due to the amount of promotions that are being put on by the various poker rooms in an effort to bring in players.  Among these promotions are SEVERAL "freeroll" tournaments that are being held by the poker rooms.  To qualify for a freeroll tournament, a player has to play a certain number of hours in a given period of time.  The qualifying time period can be a week, a month, a couple of months, etc...  I have seen freeroll tournaments available for all of these possible qualifying periods without searching that hard yet honestly...  Anyway, if you play at least the required number of qualifying hours, then you receive a "free" entry into the tournament (free depending upon how well or poorly you fared while qualifying in the cash games)...  ;)

After playing that one no-limit session at Bally's where I had bought in as a short stack and managed to make more money in 50 minutes than I had previously lost in a week's worth of limit sessions combined, I thought that I would try to qualify for a freeroll tournament by playing "lockdown poker" in the no-limit cash games.  This strategy had me buying in for the table minimum and playing SUPERTIGHT, and as long as I was not losing my shirt, I would keep going.  I earned 25 hours for a freeroll tournament (15 hours to qualify, 25 hours giving you the maximum number of starting chips available) by booking sessions of +$58.00, -$37.00, +$27.00, +$7.00, and +$5.00 for a combined qualifying result of $+60.00.

You have to be VERY PATIENT to implement this strategy, and my biggest losses in hands occurred when I tried to make moves at the wrong time.  The first time that I made a move at the wrong time occurred when I was playing with Atlanta (Mrs. Atlanta to be more specific - I referenced the friendly Atlanta couple that I played with in my last entry if you're lost right now).  I was on the button with K 10, and everyone who had entered the pot (only a few players) had limped in for 3 bucks (1/3 no-limit game).  After I shove for almost 40, Atlanta CALLS ME from the small blind (I KNEW that this was trouble, as she had been playing very similarly to me).  Surely enough, she flipped over A K, which was the hand that I expected to see, and surely enough, I didn't catch up, ever after flopping a straight draw...  The other instance where I had bad timing was shoving for 40 on a bunch of limpers with A K, and being ultimately called by the big blind, who held 8 8...  Now this confused me, because I don't know why someone would call from 3 to 40 when at best they're in a race situation (BELIEVE ME, I was playing SO TIGHT that facing 2 overcards was going to be their "best case" scenario), and at worst they'd be chasing a bigger pocket pair.  Anyway, the 8's held up, and these were my 2 big losses during my qualifying.

Before I get to the good hands, let me tell my story about the player who knows everything here (I teased this in my last blog entry also).  While playing with Atlanta (Mrs. Atlanta), we were "fortunate" enough to sit with a gentleman who just knew EVERYTHING about no-limit hold 'em, and I believe that in an effort to impress Atlanta, he was bestowing ALL of his knowledge upon us (UGGGHHH)...  If he didn't talk about various aspects of poker and how to play certain hands FOR AN HOUR STRAIGHT, it was pretty freakin close...  Anyway, the thing that I mentioned on Monday was that for knowing everything, he NEVER KNEW when it was his turn, and the dealer was CONSTANTLY letting him know that the action was on him.  In all fairness, let me say that when he left the table, he was ahead for his session (at least for what I had seen him buy in for), and unfortunately for Atlanta, he hit a jackpot hand against her.  The two things that bothered me the most about him occurred during this hand.  On a two-diamond flop, he bet 25, Atlanta shoved for about 55, and then he just HOLLYWOODS for all it's worth when everyone folds to him.  He goes into the tank, starts asking Atlanta about her hand, and then he flips over his hand, showing that he had spiked a set of 2's...  Long story short, he finally calls, and Atlanta shows that she shoved with a high flush draw.  Of course another deuce hits the board, so our villain makes quads and wins a high-hand bonus.  In the aftermath of the hand, the first thing that bothered me was that he proceeds to "educate" Atlanta about the hand.  She later said (and understandably so) that she doesn't want to hear an in-depth analysis of the hand (paraphrased) from you after she loses it to you.  Secondly, in this detailed "verbal instant replay" (and this is what got me, and I ALMOST said something, and now wish that I had), the villain said that there isn't any way that he could fold his set there...  WELL, if you weren't going to fold, then WHY was the big production necessary?!  Browbeat the person who shoved, flip over your set, hollywood, hollywood, blah, blah, BLAH!

Anyway, a brief recap of the good news for me.  I won a small pot after limping with A Q, then getting everyone to fold after shoving for about 40 over the raise to 12 (I won a handful of pots in this fashion during my lockdown sessions - either limp/raising all-in, or just shoving when the action got to me).  I shoved A K for about 35 once and was called by someone who never showed (flopped a K, turned a K).  After raising A Q to 11 once, I was called only by the player to my left, and with a Q-high flop, I checked, he bet 15, I shoved for 25 more, and he called with 7's (no 7 on the flop, and none came)...

*BIGGEST HAND*  My biggest win during the lockdown sessions occurred when the player to my right announced preflop that he was going to go all-in BLIND for his 42 bucks.  He was under-the-gun, and for some reason, the dealer wasn't letting him put his stack in before the hand was dealt - he was only allowing him to straddle.  Well, I looked down at A Q suited, and not wanting to lose him, I just limped at this point.  Several other limped for 6, and then UTG makes it 42 total.  I make it 46 total, and then the guy to my left calls both all-ins.  When the 3 of us flip our cards, blind-shover has 2-4 and guy to my left has J 9.  I am ahead, but everyone has live cards.  The flop comes A 2 3, giving blind-shover a pair and straight draw, although I'm still ahead.  The turn is another 3, and the river is a jack, so I win!  :)  I had been down in this session, and this was the hand that enabled me to finish +$27.00.

I was happy to book a small overall win while qualifying for the freeroll, although I'll understand if you never try this strategy because it does require SO MUCH patience, and you probably want to play some actual poker...  :)  I never had kings during this qualifying period, and the only time that I was dealt aces (during the last session), I decided to limp with them because I was UTG+1, and I hoped for a raise from the aggressive players to follow me.  Well, as luck had it, everyone else who came in behind me also limped, and on a flop of 4 4 x, the small-blind bet out 10, so I folded the rockets right there...

I hope that you enjoyed this verbose post, and I'll see you again on Friday with some football bets!!!  :)  Have a great day!

Monday, August 20, 2012

It's Very Close

Good afternoon everyone.  Yeah, the title of today's ramble is basically just Friday's reworded.  I'm SO FREAKIN EXCITED for the start of football season and games that mean something.  Today is August 20th, and the first real college football games kickoff on August 30th, the NFL on September 5th.  YES!!!  I remember the waiting and waiting to move back to Las Vegas, and now I've played close to 40 hours of live poker and am just a week and a half away from what will hopefully be a very profitable football season.  Let me say hello to Atlanta and her husband here, and let y'all know that my poker post will be coming on Wednesday...  I played with "her husband" first on Saturday, but then my session with 'Atlanta' yesterday was longer, so she gets to be Atlanta...  :)  A preview for that Wednesday blog entry was this guy that we were playing with who knew EVERYTHING about poker, EXCEPT when it was his turn to act... (you can't make this stuff up)...  More about that on Wednesday.  The people in Las Vegas ("the people" = tourists in 98% of cases) are still in a rush and are completely OBLIVIOUS to what is going on around them.  The star of this story is in the 2% due to the fact that he had a Nevada license plate, a vanity plate at that, which hinted at the fact that he's a photographer...  So I've just entered the self-parking garage at the Riviera on Saturday, and this car comes SPEEDING IN FRONT OF ME, having used the 'exit' of the garage as an ENTRANCE to cut me off...  Appropriately, we both get stuck behind a couple of other cars that are snailing their way up the garage ramp...  One of these cars parks, so now we're only stuck behind one more after turning right onto the next ascending ramp.  That's when Race Bannon, this GENIUS, decides to be SPEED RACER, and PASSES THE CAR in front of us on the left..., IN THE PARKING GARAGE..., which is IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWED by his DARTING BACK into the right lane so he doesn't hit the car attempting to exit the garage HEAD ON...  "Viva, Las Vegas..."  Last night after visiting the Flamingo to get some information on their freeroll tournaments (there are LOTS of freeroll tournaments and poker promotions in the desert these days), I strolled over to Bally's to see if I could find the FOURTH GROUP of friends to visit town in the less than three weeks since I've moved back.  It was already close to 2:00 in the morning, but here's a shoutout to Amy, Penny, and Sophie, who I was able to find.  Sophie had an 8:00 a.m. flight back to San Marcos, America, but I did get to spend some time with Amy (who I hadn't seen IN YEARS, and who doesn't have facebook or twitter - shame, shame!!) and Penny as they successfully did the last of their Vegas vacation drinking while making the slots spin around...  I always enjoy catching up with friends in the desert, and these two even had the Bally's count team smiling at 4:00 a.m.  :)  I'm not going to snitch on my friends too much, but we laughed a lot...  ;)  As luck would have it, I spent ALL of last week unpacking, and I still have a few more small bags to go through, so the job applications will begin this week (with any luck).  I am about dead-even on my poker playing and sports betting since I returned to Vegas, and since my friend Carmel put me up for a few weeks after I returned, I'm not out all that much money yet, so good for me...  :)  I also need to give a shoutout to my friend Lindsey here, and not just because she said that I left behind the most immaculate apartment that anyone has ever moved out of (okay, those MIGHT be my words)...  :)  Lindsey asked me how I was doing in Las Vegas, and I responded that I was fine and that she should follow this blog, because it is at times a 'diary' of what's going on with me, at which point this bright young woman said that she reads the blog...  ;)  Oh, to be in San Marcos, America during September when the Texas State Bobcats have three home football games and the Texas Music Theater has Blue October, Cory Morrow, and a bunch of other live music...  Hopefully there will be enough football games to keep me occupied...  :)  (Really, I'm getting very excited if I haven't gotten that point across yet...).  Well, after waking up at 2:00 p.m., I do admit I feel the need to get some things accomplished before the day ends, so have a great one and I'll see you again on Wednesday!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Ready For Football

Good morning everyone.  After waiting and waiting and waiting to move back here to the desert where I have the ability to wager on sports (specifically football, and we'll get there in a minute) and play poker, the football season (real games) is now less than TWO weeks away...  I have an LVH (formerly the Las Vegas Hilton, don't get me started) college football betting sheet on the table behind me for games starting on Thursday, August 30th (the sheet doesn't have overs/unders yet for the college games, but you know, when I did so well predicting them last year, I was just calling the winners against the spread, so maybe, just maybe...).  Who am I kidding - I will look for the overs/unders before the season kicks off.  One thing to keep in mind right off the bat though - look closely at the Washington State over/under numbers this season. Mike Leach is now the head coach there, and when at Texas Tech, his teams scored a ton of points while making the Red Raider defense play a lot of minutes.  His offense has tons of passing, which includes clock-stopping incomplete passes - I will look to bet overs in Cougar games if I like the numbers...

So, baseball season is over for me...  :)  I say this, and we'll see if I stick to it.  Today I spent eight dollars on a couple of parlay tickets at the Riviera (not yesterday, because it's still actually Thursday night here)...  Anyway, although being in all the games, I hit 1 out of 3 bets on each ticket, and I just feel that I know football better (which is the same reasoning that I'm using for not wanting to sit in any more limit games now that I have access to the whole Strip, but that's for next Wednesday's entry).  Okay, it's for next Wednesday's entry other than saying that I would rather, even when trying to protect my bankroll, sit in a no-limit game short-stacked with 50, or 60, or 100 (whatever is allowed), and play my game....  See, so much to write about now that I live here, I can't keep one post separated from another...

Basketball.  Congratulations to the USA Men's team on winning the gold medal.  I had stated here previously that I wouldn't be surprised if they lost, and they had two close calls.  They were played very toughly to a 5-point game in the qualifying round (Lithuania I believe, and I hate that I didn't get to see that game).  I think it was a 99-94 game.  And then Spain played us close in the gold medal game, but chalk one up for the Stars and Stripes.  I'll restate what I believe I said here before (I know I said it on facebook for sure).  This group up against the Dream Team of 92 - PLEASE...

Also in the world of basketball - it seems that the media and Laker Nation are going CRAZY over this Dwight Howard trade...  The media just LIVES to overhype things...  Heck, even Las Vegas made the Lakers 8 to 5 favorites to win the title next year...  The Lakers lost Bynum in the trade, Howard is currently recovering from a season-ending injury, both Kobe and Nash are past their prime, and ESPN is posing the question as to whether or not the Lakers will win 65 games next year, IN THE WEST...  Again, PLEASE...  And they better have EVERYTHING fall their way next season and stay healthy if they do expect to win the NBA title...

Revisiting my golf prediction - Tiger goes 0 for 4 in the majors this year, and is no closer to catching up with Mr. Nicklaus...  I'm telling you, it's not going to be easy, and I don't think he's going to do it...  Tiger has 4 to tie, 5 to break the record if my just-now fact-check is correct...

Getting back to football, I do have some fantasy football advice for you if you are inclined to play it.  Despite not having won a championship in a draft league since my very first year of playing in one (injuries just plagued me, like my fantasy baseball team this season), I did always manage to get off to quick starts, and there is a reason for this.  When drafting between two players who are very comparable, I'd always take the player who faced the easier schedule to start the season.  I don't even know if most players who compete in fantasy bother to look at strength of schedule...  I think it's always best to get off to a good start (at whatever you're doing in life).  It's hard to play catch-up, and if you can win games early on, it gives you some wiggle room later.  I almost think that while ignoring this, people tend to pay too much attention to bye weeks, because you're almost certain to experience some injuries (definite for my teams), and transactions allow you to replace players and manipulate your way around the bye weeks, on the off-chance that almost every single player you decided to draft shares a common off-week.

Okay, I think that's all the damage that I'm prepared to do tonight...  I hope that you have a great weekend and I'll see you again on Monday!


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Better Luck Next Time

Good morning everyone (or good evening to everyone here on Pacific Standard Time).  The past couple of days have consisted of trying to get some of my stuff unpacked and semi-organized (when I left San Marcos, there were a lot of things that I hadn't even seen in the year since I had left Austin, and those things can just remain tucked away for the time being).  The new place is working out pretty well.  I gave away both of my t.v.'s to friends prior to leaving Texas, completely willing to live a caveman life consisting solely of internet access when I arrived in the desert, so having a mounted set with over 100 channels included in my rent hasn't been horrible. 

Today is supposed to be poker day.  Well, fortunately for me, there is no shortage of material since I moved, and there is an editing room floor in my head where many things will remain, due both to you not wanting to read novels every time that you visit and me not wanting to write them.

I have now met Rob and Serge, in addition to having met Carmel.  I feel that somewhere along the line, somebody forgot to present me with my honorary membership card for blogging about poker once a week, but I'm going to let it slide...  Both Rob and Serge were very cool, and not just because they're very cool.  When I joined them on the Strip, they were both sitting at the same 1/2 table, and after having played poker everyday the week before, I was just content to meet them and sweat their game.  Neither of them chastised me for being chicken (which I totally would have taken in stride), and I honestly enjoy watching other people play, especially when I know them.  To be honest, every time that I have come across poker on television since returning to Vegas, I have changed the channel.  I sincerely prefer railing live 1/2 or 2/5 no-limit hands as opposed to watching televised hands.  I will let my blogging friends detail specific hands from their session if they choose, and I will instead give you a couple of other hands from the Strip.

I saw both of these hands occur on Saturday night when I decided to explore after actually having STAYED IN on Friday night, diligently gearing up for my job and residence searches.  I had actually been writing down the names of a lot of potential habitats in my spiral notebook, and part of Saturday night's excursion was set aside for cruising neighborhoods after 3:00 a.m., when traffic would be thinner and I could see how liveable certain parts of town are in the very early hours of Sunday morning.  I may have mentioned this before, but if not, the place where I'm staying now is less than a mile from the place where I lived the last time I was in town.

Anyway, after parking at the Riviera and bothering my former co-workers once again, I walked to Treasure Island, the Mirage, Harrah's, Imperial Palace, the Venetian, Palazzo, Wynn, and the Encore before returning to the Riviera.  At the Wynn, I saw this occur at a 1/3 table.  This isn't really a hand write-up, it's just cruel and funny (and cruel).  After watching some 2/5 hands, I slid down the rail and landed between the 2 and 3 seats - the 2-seat was an attractive girl, and she had her attractive friend sitting behind her.  Let me note here that there were A LOT of short stacks in these 1/3 games at the Wynn, ESPECIALLY for the Wynn that I was used to before I moved.  Anyway, when the gentleman in the 1-seat rises to leave with his stack of about 60 bucks, the girl BEHIND the 2-seat (not the one playing) chirps, "better luck next time."  He walks off, they're giggling (the chirper moreso than the player).  They were saying they're local when the next player sat down, a guy who wouldn't stop talking and who I believe had a big part in chasing them off after 10 minutes.  The topic of them giving fake names at the table (the chirper first said she was Sarah, then corrected that, saying she was 'Sasha' - evidently, giving fake names had been part of their entertainment).  Well, this guy WOULD NOT let this fake name thing go, and he keeps annoyingly bringing up fake names for himself, OBVIOUSLY trying to hit on both girls, and I'm almost surprised that they didn't RUN from the table when they left (maybe it was the high heels)...

Speaking of high heels, I passed by 'The Nightclub at Encore' - people were just LINED UP to get into the club...  After passing a big chunk of partygoers dressed 'to the nines' (where did that saying originate?), I see the sign at the entrance:  Women $20.00/Men $75.00...  WOW...  Struggling economy evidently being a relative term...

Back at the Riv, I'm watching some 1/3 when the big stack at the table flat calls a raise before the flop.  I've seen an AWFUL LOT of this since returning to Vegas, so much so that it reminds me of the free poker at MSN - players limping in for the minimum, and being very willing to flat the raise to 15, 20, 25...  WHAT are you limping with, and WHY didn't you raise?!  Anyway, the big stack flats, and after a flop of 3 3 5, he check-calls the raiser's bet.  After an x on the turn (not an A or K - some random forgettable card) the big stack now bets out 125 (a little more than the size of the pot)...  It's about this time that...  CRASH!!!  For the second time in a week since I've visited the Riv, someone from outside the poker "room" has leaned up against this bookshelf-looking thing that IN REALITY has WHEELS, and has knocked it over...  On the "room" side of it, it is actually a cabinet, and all sorts of cupholders, lammers, etc.... come spilling out of it.  For the second time in a week, I help pick up the disaster.  And yes, I COMPLETELY MISS the rest of the most intriguing hand to occur since I returned to my starting point.  The dealer told me after his down that the original raiser disgustedly folded to the big stack's bet on the river, thus the big stack's cards weren't shown.  The big stack had about 700 in front of him before the hand began, and seeing me playing with my ever-present 3 chips that I carry around, coyly invited me to join the table when a seat opened...  As was the case a few nights earlier with Serge and Rob, I have to this point been very disciplined about playing only when I'm psyched up to, and not forcing things.  I live here now, and have games at my disposal whenever I want them...  ;)  Have a great day and I'll see you again on Friday!


Monday, August 13, 2012

Caesar Puh Lah Chay

Good afternoon everyone.  I just feel like I've been running very well lately (this is obviously not a reference to my micro-baseball betting, which we'll save for Friday).  However, on ramble day, I MUST insert one little betting line here.  While visiting with some excellent company from San Marcos, America today (this seems to be a theme lately, doesn't it?), I found myself in the sportsbook (shocker) at the Rio, and saw college football betting lines for the first time since I returned to the valley.  Here you go:  September 1st - Texas State (+37) @ Houston.  :)  The bookmakers evidently think that the Bobcats will lose to the Cougars in a barnburner...  ;)  Back to where this ramble was originally headed, I had so many belongings (so much crap) packed into my vehicle when I headed west from San Marcos, America two weeks ago today that I thought my axles would break, or that my tires would just POP from trying to handle the payload...  I also wasn't crazy about navigating Arizona and Nevada during daylight at the end of July.  As fate had it, my vehicle was a TROOPER, it was OVERCAST and RAINING in the mountains out of Phoenix and into Nevada, up til about five minutes short of the dam, and people have been so nice to me over these last few weeks.  Really quick, one little tidbit that I believe I have omitted to this point.  While driving, you pass many rock formations in New Mexico and Arizona.  While cruising on I-10 in one of these 2 states, off to my right, I noticed that someone had somehow made their way onto one of the not so monstrous of these formations and had tagged it "Fraggle Rock" with white paint (it was amusing after more than a dozen hours of driving)...  :)   Once again let me give a sincere shoutout to Carmel Josephine - her and the 'guard dogs' were very gracious in opening their home to me, and she has some serious good karma deposited for the time this puppy lands on his feet (moreso than the grape juice and the cheetos that I left behind)...  ;)  For those who might be questioning me, the Minute Maid grape juice is very tasty, and the dogs like the cheetos, so...  :P  Sincerely, thank you Carmel.  For the never-ending scores of people who keep treating me to meals, I might be able to start a seperate blog day devoted to 'Meals That My Friends Treated Me To' while doing reviews on the different dining options in the desert.  Today I was lucky enough to hang out with one of my favorite people from my coaching past - she was in town with her boyfriend for the Star Trek Convention (although they're not 'Trekkies' - they just happen to know Rod Roddenbery - go figure)...  Anyway, we strolled from the Rio to the Gold Coast lunch buffet, where yours truly started with a PLATE FULL of Italian food, had a second plate of trout and tilapia, and ended with a little piece of cake accompanied with blueberries...  #content  At lunch she asked me, "what's up with the bikini thing I keep seeing?" (I put entry notifications on my facebook page), and I let her know that it's basically a diary of what I have been up to, and how my little blog got its name.  The Gold Coast lunch buffet good and affordable if you find yourself on that side of town.  I honestly have never spent that much time in that area west of the Strip other than working the WSOP when I first arrived in town, so I didn't have any idea...  My friends are about "Rio'd out" after a long weekend stay there.  I have found a place to live - how permanent it is remains to be seen, but it does come with a t.v., with other 100 channels of cable, with utilities paid, and most importantly, with high-speed internet that I can plug my desktop into...  Let the job search proceed in earnest...  Just one job, that's all it will take...  ;)  I don't remember if I mentioned here before that I really had no chance at loving the movie 'The Hangover' because it was SO OVERHYPED to me before I saw it, but I realized today that it has probably scarred me for life...  While driving by Caesar's Palace on my way to the Rio earlier, all that I could think was...  "Caesar...  Puh.. Lah.. Chay..."  Horrible, I know...  I hope that all of you have a great day and I'll see you again on Wednesday with a little poker tale or two...

Thursday, August 9, 2012

We Want Touchdowns

Good morning everyone.  Well here I am, back on good ole computer #8 (if you're in the library, please feel free to stop by for an autograph)...  I'm feeling a little less bitter right now than I did last night.  In my previous 2 days of betting parlays preceding yesterday, I had lost $5.00 and .15, respectively.  Yesterday I managed to lose $19.00.  Not every game that I bet, but at least one loser on every ticket.  The title of today's blog entry was almost, 'NEVER Bet On The Chicago White Sox' (hey lightning).  The pale hose really killed me the last few days (stupid Royals).

Anyway, this brings us to today, which I 99% guarantee you will end at Aliante Station Casino at about 8:00 today because I went down to the strip to meet a couple of friends last night after my brilliant day of sport prognosticating...  Upon leaving the library today, I will be treated to the Olympics Women's Soccer Final, featuring team Stars & Stripes vs. Japan (the same Japan who defeated us in the World Cup if I'm not mistaken).  During that game, I will be figuring out my parlays for the day, but I have already figured out one of them, so that you can follow along at home.  Oh, did I mention that the NFL is rolling out six preseason games today?  :)  Every over/under number is in the 35ish range for these 6 games, so I am going to dedicate a 2-dollar parlay ticket to the 6 overs in this set (it would pay in the neighborhood of 90 bucks if it hits).  I have already decided that ten bucks will be my limit for today.  I was really ticked off yesterday that I lost the 19 bucks on the 4 baseball parlays, and at the moment I'm really happy that I was so upset yesterday.  I did not move all the way back to the desert to lose...  So anyway, root for a lot of scoring in today's football games.  They all kickoff in the same half-hour time frame, which ought to make things very interesting when added to the slate of baseball games. 

I have given up on my fantasy baseball team since arriving in the desert.  Even though I couldn't win a ton even if I did come back to cash, it's more on principle that I'm not giving it another look.  When I live in a place where I can bet games on tap, I find no reason to participate in that silly stuff.  Injuries can kill you in fantasy sports, and true to the form of my recent football teams, this baseball squad was just DECIMATED by injuries.  R.I.P. Bikini Hill Giants...  :(

I've also decided to make it a point to visit a sportsbook everyday.  I am still patiently chomping at the bit to get a job and find a permanent place to live in the near future so that I can figure out my finances and what my 'official' betting and poker bankrolls will be.  I have found numerous temporary extended-stay places online (and I hear that this town has 1 or 2 hotels if you are in a pinch), so my immediate future has me going into overdrive searching for a job.  I think that I've stated this before, but just ONE JOB, ANYTHING, will be sufficient to pay the currently low rental rates in Las Vegas, America.

I also wanted to give a shoutout to my fellow bloggers, and let you know that I haven't forgotten about you if you've missed me in the comments sections, but reading blogs over my phone is about as easy as making blog entries.  GRRRRRRR...  As I've said during this week, this is my Friday post since the library is closed on actual Fridays, but I will see you again Monday with my ramble.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Poker, Poker, Poker...

Good morning everyone.  God bless the intruder who wants to break into this library during closing and try to use these computers.  They unlocked the doors just a few ticks early this morning, and when I tried to log in to this computer, I got a message that read, "computer unavailable until 10:30 a.m...."  :)  Love it!!!  For those of you who like this little piece of cyberworld for the sports, I bet $23.00 combined on 3 baseball tickets yesterday and lost 0.15 for the day (yes, 15 cents) - you can't make this stuff up...  If the Rangers and Red Sox score one more run, I get an extra 20 bucks for the day.  However, if Washington doesn't manage to finally beat Houston in 11 innings, I lose an extra $22.85 for the day.  Oh, but we were here to talk about poker, right?

So it's one week ago today when I innocently take a seat in the 2-4 limit game at Aliante Station, not knowing that I was going to get stuck for about 60 bucks early after being rundown in tragic fashion 3 times (the worst of which was flopping a set of 10's on a 10 8 2 rainbow flop, only to lose to runner-runner straight against the opponent who held 8 7)...  Anyway, that 10-hour session was just the start of a poker-filled week which had me sitting down approximately 120 dollars after 21 hours of limit session all over town.  Enter Saturday...  Despite having visited my former place of employment, the Riviera, on both Thursday and Friday, I had not yet touched base with my favorite cocktail waitress (of 'I'll Just Take The Money' fame), and I had it on good authority that she was working on Saturday.  Being the sweetheart that I am, I decided to make ANOTHER trip back down to the Strip and I enjoyed sharing the nachos lunch (and coke that she bought me) during her full hour break.  Now what to do???  I was not about to drive all the way home since I was already on the Strip, so I make my way to Bally's, where friends of the family are staying in town (the Circus Circus Steakhouse group), hoping to run into Steve, the poker player of the bunch.  I end up watching the end of the Bally's 4:00 Tourney.  Twelve players had signed up, there were 4 left when I arrived, and when they got down to 3 players, the 3 somehow managed to play through more than 2 full 20-minute round without anyone busting out - pretty amazing...  Anyway, after watching this no-limit tourney action, I decide to buy into a 1/2 no-limit game, with just 100 bucks, just to see what happens...

I sit down at 6:00, get no hands to speak of, and then at 6:50, it happens.  In the big blind, I am dealt the 5 3 offsuit, and I am not raised.  The flop comes...  6  2  4 rainbow...  With the very real tired expression that I am carrying operating on four hours of sleep for the second straight day, I check the flop with no interest.  The guy to my left bets out 15, and the guy at the far end of the table raises to 30.  I'm literally thinking, "Hmmmm?" as I bring my whopping stack of 84 across the betting line.  This is where the guy to my left SHOVES for over 300..., and then the guy at the far end of the table goes into the tank.  Talking to himself, he says, "I can't lay down trips..." (he meant a set, but we'll have that conversation some other time).  Of course it's not me he's worried about, because he can lose to me but still win over 200 from the guy to my left.  After a minute, he proceeds to call the all-in.  The guy to my left flips over J J (okay...).  The guy at the far end of the table shows 4 4.  The turn is a beautiful queen, and the river is a more beautiful king...  Our hero triples up because the board DID NOT PAIR - WOO HOO!!!  :)  The guy to my left busted with his jacks, and 2 of the players at the far end of the table got up a minute later, so I played one more hand, and then got up myself, with a profit of 154 bucks, winning more in one no-limit hand than I had lost for the week in 21 hours of various limit sessions...  :)

The consensus around town seems to be that everyone is a little slower since the World Series ended just a few weeks ago, which doesn't surprise me.  There are several new rooms around town since I left, and considering the number of people that left town when the economy went south, there seem to be a number or rooms that seem to be barely hanging on right now.  It currently appears that many poker rooms struggle to get more than four games going in a day.  I would guess that the cooler weather that comes with the fall and football season will bring some more business back to the local poker scene.  This is definitely a different town than the one that I left in 2007, with the foot traffic in many of the casinos (not just poker rooms) being noticeably light.  There are many more poker rooms that are now offering high hand and bad beat jackpots in an attempt to bring business to their corners of the world however. 

Okay, that seems like plenty for today.  I'll be back tomorrow with a sports-related blog.  In the meantime, have a great day! 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

A Whole Hour, WOO HOO!!!

Good morning everyone.  I've got a bonus post for you today because I've figured out how the library works and I am coming at you with a full 60 minutes in my arsenal.  Just shove aside an elderly lady, a few small children, and a puppy dog...  (just kidding - I would never be mean to a puppy dog)...  ;)  I thought that since I've been running errands all morning and that I've got so much to say, I would stop by and visit my readers before I got into the apartment and job search.  This library actually will allow me to use the computer for an hour each day, and they are open five days a week, AND you are allowed extra time if you notify the reference desk that you are filling out an application, so you're stuck with me.  By the way, this session is also cool like yesterday's in that there is a clock at the top of the monitor counting down my minutes.  I know FOR A FACT that if I had a countdown clock at the top of my desktop on a full-time basis and stuck to an hour each day, I would have a much more productive life...  :P 

Let's make poker our first topic, since that will be my topic of choice tomorrow (I HAVE to get my teaser in here again).  Tomorrow will be the entry where I talk about the ONE no-limit hand that got me even (actually ahead) in poker since my arrival back in the desert after more than 20 hours of limit sessions, but I will give you a few poker tidbits since you were kind enough to stop by today.  First, the M Resort & Casino has some GREAT promotions running this month (they actually run good poker room promotions every month, but I returned just in time for August)...  :)  I would love to work there if the opportunity presents itself in the future, but short of that, it will definitely be a room that I frequent often, especially if I can find a place to live in Henderson or Green Valley.  For those of you who don't have a map of the valley handy, Henderson and GV are both just to the south of Las Vegas.  Henderson was actually the first place that I lived that last time that I was here, before moving just east of the Strip to be closer to my job.  One promotion that I cashed in on already was receiving a bottle of wine for playing two hours on Sunday morning.  That session came at the end of an interesting Saturday, which followed an interesting Friday.  For some reason Coach operated on four hours of sleep for a few days in a row during the past week.  The reason was actually very good, in that I coincidentally had two different groups of friends visiting town the EXACT SAME WEEK that I moved back.  Anyway, my no-limit hand occurred early Saturday evening, before I met friends to play at Excalibur, before I went to their room at the MGM Signature Towers and dined and took a five-hour nap, BEFORE I went to the M to pick up my wine.  The floor person was nice enough to sit in the game with myself and a couple so that we could start accumulating our two hours at 7:30 on Sunday morning - like I said, very nice room...  Okay, more of that poker stuff tomorrow.

At this point I am realizing that I will most likely post both tomorrow and Thursday since this library is closed on Friday.  It seems that budget cuts are responsible for the library's odd hours (opening at 10:30 Monday-Thursday).  Okay, so for the time being, that will mean rambles on Mondays, poker/Las Vegas on Wednesdays, and sports on Thursdays.  I will also give you a little sports teaser right now since I have just tons to write about.  SOMEBODY found the baseball parlay cards at Aliante Station last night.  Minimum bet of 2 dollars, and minimum of 3 bets in your parlay.  I filled out a 5 dollar parlay card with 4 bets.  Tigers, White Sox, and Dodgers (all had to win by at least 2 runs), and over 10 runs total in the Rangers/Red Sox game.  So it goes Tigers 7-2, Boston 9-2, and Chicago 4-2.  So now I am at the point that if the Dodgers beat the Rockies by at least 2 in Los Angeles, I get back 55 dollars for my five bucks.  I did not hedge this (bet the Rockies to win for 10, 15, etc... dollars) because I had returned home to eat and take a nap an hour before the Rockies and Dodgers started (also in my defense, the White Sox scored 2 runs in the bottom of the 8th to break a 2-2 tie, at which time the Rockies and Dodgers had already started)...  ANYWAY, after the Dodgers left TEN men on base and got jobbed by the umpires a few times, they ended up losing the game 2-0, and I have my first losing parlay ticket of 2012.  On the topic of parlay tickets, let me say here that the funniest thing about catching up with my sports betting cocktail waitress buddy on Saturday was that once we got on the topic of football parlay tickets, she just LIT UP and wanted to talk about those, and Peyton Manning, and Tebow, and the Cowboys (her team), etc, etc, etc...  This is while I was honestly there just to see how SHE was doing and catch up...  :)  This is the same cocktail waitress from the "I'll Just Take The Money" post that I wrote a little while back - always makes me smile...

While I'm at Aliante Station with a big bank of t.v.'s in front of me, I am able to use my phone to get locations of apartments and rooms for rent, which I am still sifting through (no need to rush into a bad choice thanks to Miss Carmel), so don't worry that my timer is now on 22 minutes...  :)  Actually, re-charging my phone was another reason that I returned home yesterday, because I had been intermittently using my phone to hunt for a home from 2:00-6:00 at Aliante while watching the Olympics and figuring out my 75% of a great parlay yesterday...

I think that is enough for you to digest for today, so I will be back tomorrow with poker, Thursday with sports, and then on Monday with my ramble (the new posting schedule, until further notice).  Thank you for all of the well wishes upon my return to the desert - I will see you again tomorrow!  ;)

Monday, August 6, 2012

Racing Against Time

Good afternoon everyone.  I am literally in a race against time as I type this blog entry for you from a very nice library in North Las Vegas.  I am not yet eligible for a library card, so I am using a computer for 15 minutes (it actually gave me 20, but shhhhh...).  ;)  I have many things that I can write about, including a ton of poker, but I am going to save the poker until Wednesday, with the exception of this little tease:  In a 50-minute no-limit session at Bally's on Saturday, I managed to make more money in one hand than I had managed to lose over the total of 21 hours of limit sessions up to that point...  :)  There are still some incredibly weak 1/2 no-limit players in the desert, much to my surprise.  All of the fish have not yet been caught...  :)  I need to give a shoutout to my beautiful host Carmel Josephine (beautiful, not hot, as there is evidently a difference, although I am unsure as to whether or not we have an official ruling on the word 'caliente' yet...).  One thing that Miss Carmel has in her arsenal is a fantastic smile (she broke it out at the Thai restaurant that she treated me to when she was greeting the staff that she knew) - the smile just evokes the best in everyone else that is around.  The Thai beef salad, spicy chili mint fried rice with seafood, and Thai milk tea that Carmel treated me to as I innocently thought I was riding along with her on a trip to Blockbuster was part of a luckily recurring theme for me during the past week and a half as generous people have been treating me to meals left and right.  It is really nice to have good friends.  A group of people composed of Carmel, my dad, Scott, Malay, Steve and his friends, Ryan and his friends, and the Aliante and M Resort Casinos have treated me to the meal mentioned above, chicken, steak, fish tacos, nachos, and pizza (among other things) during the past week and a half.  I will RUN if I see a scale.  The dreaded five-minute warning is now at the top of the monitor...  The blogger app and trying to type entries from my phone sincerely sucks, but TRUST ME when I say that the quality of my blogs will VASTLY IMPROVE once I have full-time access to a computer due to the fact that I will have SO MUCH material living in the desert.  Entering Bally's, one girl in a group of seven tourists stopped upon exiting the elevator to snap of photo of the SIGN advertising the buffet...  :)  Okay, I wish I could go on, but I need to enter this before time runs out.  Have a great day and I'll see you again on Wednesday!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Brutal/Typical 2/4 Grinding From Aliante Station

this post will be my wednesday/friday post, and then i'll come back with a ramble on monday.  for the friday part first, i passed on betting 2 overs yesterday, (which both won of course).  i am strongly leaning towards heading back to aliante today to bet on some sports and study some sports (i.e., what i should have done yesterday)...  i sit at the 2/4 table at 1:30 p.m.  i had no intention on being there for 10 hours, but i was on the wrong end of some early bad beats (in 2/4??? you say).  the worst of these came on a 10 8 2 flop, where i flopped a set of 10s, a rainbow flop - yes, this gets horrible...  lady with 8 7 check calls me t the river to go runner-runner straight.  when she suddenly bets the river, i table my 10's faceup (remember my pocket 10's post???)  grrrrrr (all caps).  i knew she had it..  this was the 3rd of 3 bad beats which had me down almost 100 early on...  i stayed and suffered and suffered and got half of that back - i seem to recall being down at least 108 later.  ten hours, never a pair higher than jacks (which i had once).  lost with that set of 10's, lost with a set of 4's, bet out my paired aces on a flop of 2 x ace to a guy who calls to the river with 2 3, going runner runner for the 4-card straight on the board.  i forgot to mention this, but i wasn't sad when 8 7 lady went broke later...  anyway, 2 3 guy later has kings, bets whole way, but then check-folds river when an ace shows up and is bet...  funny thing, his neighbor bluffed and couldn't beat the kings...  as frustrated guy racks up and leaves, he explains to a curious neighbor on his left that he folded 'because he plays right, even though it's 2/4'...  yes, mr. 2 3 guy also played 9 3 suited under the gun earlier to chase down a flush, and was the one who rivered the 4-card flush on the board to beat my set of 4's...  ba ha ha ha cowboys...  :)  i also got to witness the case card in the deck hit the river to win hands twice yesterday...  4 flopped trips, guy turned 6 for 6's full, lady rivers last 4. guy flops trips with k q, river k gives other guy with k k the one-outer...  i will monitor the blog for comments, but otherwise i will see you again on monday with my ramble...  have a great weekend!

Just A Statistic

good morning everyone.  i have tried to post twice from my phone, and am now attempting to do so within the blogger phone app.  i still cannot figure out how to capitalize letters,  but read on if that doesn't bother you..  i made the trip from san marcos, america to the desert in 21 hours and 12 minutes.  i visited my friend who writes 'life as a las vegas poker dealer' early tuesday morning (the friend who is the only reason that i ever started to blog, since i didn't know what a blog was until i read his)...  he said that he recently read that many people who move away from vegas return within 3 years, so i guess i'm just a statistic...  :)  on a positive note, one of my blog readers is playing the role of superhero and has provided me with a temporary place to stay, which has been a huge, huge help (i need my all caps), and will not be forgotten...  other than getting to know more of phoenix than i ever intended, the trip went pretty smoothly, and actual rain in the arizona mountains was a blessing...  i'm going to hit enter and see what happens.  i'll have a poker post for you soon if this doesn't look too ridiculous...