Monday, November 03, 2008

Trick or Treat

PokerStars VIP Status -- Silver StarGot home late in the afternoon on Friday (October 31). Ripped open the bags of Laffy Taffy, Hershey bars, and Smarties we’d gotten earlier in the week and filled a big wooden bowl, readying myself for the march of zombies, princesses, witches, and ghosts that was sure to commence sometime before sunset.

Having a little bit of time to kill before the trick-or-treaters would be arriving, I opened PokerStars and checked out my “VIP Status” for the month. I was sitting at 1,230 points, meaning if I wanted to reach “Silver Star” I was going to have to make a crazy push here at the end to do so. I’d gotten the Silver Star once before earlier this year. I wrote about it here, including as an illustration an embarrassing photo of a young Shamus dressed as a cowboy. Gawd, I hope that was Halloween. (I cannot recall.)

I never really took advantage of any of the (modest) benefits of the Silver Star back in April when I had it, only playing a couple of the tourneys and never cashing my FPPs for anything. Something made me want to try again, though, and perhaps this time around do something with the status. I did a few quick calculations and decided I’d have to put in something like 500-600 hands at the $50 buy-in pot-limit Omaha tables to get the needed points. And the kiddies were coming. I’d have to move quickly....

So I did something very uncharacteristic. I four-tabled at PLO50 for the next two hours, actually putting in over 700 hands. Two of the tables were six-handed, so the action was pretty relentless. I ended up coming away a bit down, though not nearly as much as it could have been. Had some crazy, head-spinning swings (for me, anyway) in both directions throughout the session. Lost what was probably the biggest pot I’ve ever played online (over $160, I think), but won a couple of $100-plus pots as well. I’d offer details, but the whole thing was so manic I can barely remember what happened.

Now I have the Silver Star and over 10,000 FPPs to spend, and I’m thinking this time I might just take the cash. One can get $50 for every 5,000 FPPs, and while I know there are better deals (including using FPPs for buy-ins to certain tourneys), I don’t think I play enough tourneys really to make that work for me.

Another decision I get to make is whether or not to display my status at the tables. What do you guys think? Any advantage (or disadvantage) to letting the world know I’m a Silver Star?

In any event, it looks like my “treat” for having made that final push will be an extra hundy in my account. Can’t help thinking, though, that for us small-timers who find ourselves occasionally pushing to make that Silver Star it’s mostly a “trick.”

Laffy TaffyOh, but I did get another treat out of it. Night had fallen by the time I finished up play, and when I took a peek out front I realized I’d forgotten to turn on the porchlight when I got home. Meaning the kiddies passed us by.

Sweet! More Laffy Taffy for me. Delicious!

And hilarious. Jokes On Every Wrapper! Mmm-umm-mmm... what does this one say? “Why did the chicken cross the playground?” Let’s see... “To get to the other slide.”

Terrific! Have a whole bowl of this stuff now!

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Angry_Bert said...

Shamus, love the blog.

Can you give us one laffy taffy joke a day until you're done with the bag?

I tried a simliar appraoch with $100 NLHE and donked off a bunch of cash in my dash to the Silver. I'm glad it worked out differently for you. Congrats!

I don't like showing the star status b/c in a game of asymetric information, I think every edge can help. Why let your opposition know that you're better/worse ranked than them? (Assuming that the starr system somehow measures expeirence or skill, in addition to volume).

11/03/2008 1:29 PM  
Blogger Short-Stacked Shamus said...

I agree, Angry Bert -- I'm inclined not to let everyone see my fancy Silver Star.

Oh, and what did the football coach say to the operator? He wanted his quarterback.

:)

11/03/2008 2:41 PM  
Anonymous cadmunkey said...

haha good old fashioned jokes, gotta love 'em. I have to agree with you over the whole Stars VIP thing. For us micro grinders I'm not sure we get much value out of it. Being a UK citizen I dont even get to play the free VIP tournaments unless I want to get out of bed in the middle of he night for a shot at a couple o hundred bucks. There has been a thread on 2+2 recently about how they could improve the VIP system for micro players but I'm doubting Stars will want to chnage things much. I'm with you, I always cash my FPPs in for the bonuses, everything else is pretty much useless.

11/04/2008 9:40 AM  

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