Friday, September 11, 2009

I Get Up, I Get Down

I Get Up, I Get DownI mentioned a week-and-a-half ago how August had gone particularly well for me poker-wise. September? Not so good. Has been a rough, rough last week at PLO25 (six-handed).

Some bad play on my part, for sure. In some cases compounded, I think, from having played at least a couple of sessions while tired.

You might remember me whimpering earlier in the week about my sleep schedule having gone wacky from helping out with some of those WCOOP write-ups. As my buds Change100 and California Jen have been noting in their tweets, doing those often requires sitting up into the wee hours, sometimes all through the night.

Three of the four recaps I did last weekend were like that, and as I’m no good at sleeping during the day, I ended up having a few 24-hour periods in there during which I only got a couple of hours of actual snooze time. Yet I stubbornly tried to play my usual sessions anyway, and while I haven’t studied the hand histories (too tired, haha), I’m reasonably sure I was making some poor decisions that made it harder for me to succeed.

Have been running bad, too, though, seemingly missing most draws while my opponents always seem to hit theirs. Which doesn’t help, dontcha know.

Played yesterday and was doing all right, up a modest amount (ten bucks or so). Had mentally slipped into that zone where I was thinking of leaving so as to secure even a tiny win, a strategy I like to employ when on a downswing. Does a lot psychologically, I think, just to be able to return the next day with a memory of ending in the black.

Anyhow, I’m thinking of getting up when I get dealt AdAhThTd in the cutoff. The first two players limp in, and I raise the pot (to $1.35). After all, my hand fell into that very small class of starting hands Jeff Hwang calls “Magnum.” “Ultra premium Aces,” he says, are the “double-suited aces with... a second big pair.” “The very best starting hands in PLO. A raising hand from any position.”

Folds back to to the big blind -- whom I have covered by a few -- and he reraises pot to $5.90. The limpers fold, and its back on me. I suppose I can call and see a flop, but really, that’s silly talk. I’m Magnum, baby! I reraise, he puts the rest in, and I call, making for a pot of 65 bucks or so.

He has ticked the the option not to show his cards when all in, so while I don’t see his cards when the flop comes KcTc2h, I am sure already that I’m cooked. I have flopped a set of tens, but I know know know he’s flopped a better set. The turn is the 5s, the river the 3h, and sure enough he’s got the kings -- Kh7d7hKd.

After being up, now I’m down. I notice I had both his suits covered. A little more insult to injury arrives in the form of my opponent typing “ty” afterwards. I leave shortly thereafter, having to book another loss.

Speaking of injury, all apologies for sharing this here story of woe, as I know know know how unpleasant they are to read sometimes. In fact, this week -- as I’ve endured my own downswing -- I’ve begun to notice just how excruciating these stories of poker misfortune can be. And prevalent.

I read a lot of blogs, forums, tweets, and whatnot, and was starting to see this week how these stories are everyfrigginwhere. Kind of like the smoke that used to fill most poker rooms, choking us all. So, like I say, sorry for clouding up the room with more of that. Here, let me just put this one out right here.

Yes, 'Close to the Edge' (1972)One of those whose tweets I follow is Joe Sebok, who occasionally broadcasts to his 793,195 followers (?!?) his “album of the day.” Several weeks ago I recall he mentioned he was listening to that Yes album, Close to the Edge (1972), one I have on the iPod but hadn’t dialed up in some time. I think it was the suggestion that caused me to listen yesterday.

What a jewel, that one. Lyrics mostly applesauce (as is usual for Yes), but nonetheless fascinating from beginning to end, especially the title track, which has that moment of clarity during the sweetly serene middle section, titled “I Get Up, I Get Down.”

Don’t ask me what any of the surrounding lyrics are supposed to be saying, but I get that one phrase. I think we all do.

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Blogger bellatrix78 said...

Hang in there Shamus, read some Tommy Angelo. I was listening to a Harrah's commercial a few days ago (I know...) and they said something like "when you play for fun, you've already won". Remember that you're playing this game for fun! :)

9/11/2009 11:47 AM  
Anonymous CADmunkey said...

Its been a while since you recommended an album, so I'll be sure to check this one out.
Better luck at the tables for this week bro' ;-)

9/14/2009 9:46 AM  
Blogger Short-Stacked Shamus said...

Thanks, bellatrix! And thx also Cadmunkey -- good to hear from you, bud.

Close to the Edge is terrific, for sure, although I'll admit they kind of lose me a bit during the less-sweet, more raucous third and final track of the LP ("Siberian Khatru").

A couple of other recommendations for you, both kind of in the Tortoise vein: Boards of Canada's Geogaddi & Four Tet's Rounds.

9/14/2009 4:40 PM  

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