Monday, December 20, 2010

WPBT Part 5: Yes, I Did Play Poker

I know, I know, you're thinking "when did that happen"? You're thinking "How can she possibly have had time between all the kissing and hugging and talking and kissing and shoes and hugging and fashion and kissing and mooning all over Grange and laying on the bed with Kat and hugging and kissing . . . "

But I got in poker. Quite a bit, in fact.

I started much earlier than normal . . . after getting a few hugs and kisses in at the IP, and showing off my smokin' hot red shoes, I sat down with a table full of bloggers to play a little $1/$2 NL. It was typical blogger play, which means there was always a button straddle, or some other live straddle, and it meant my husband and CK were betting in prime numbers bigger than five (don't ask me). I played my typical game, which meant "call if your hand is strong, raise if it's stronger, bet when you hit it, fold when you don't."

I was in the blind when my first big hand hit. Of course, there was some straddle somewhere, so I was obliged to come in for the full $4, and then I think my husband made it some prime number (might have been 7). I had A7 suited, and decided to call. I was left in the hand with CaityCaity and my husband.

The flop came 7-7-7. I tried to turn down the volume on the choir of poker angels that were singing "Quaaaaaads!" in my head. My whole goal was to try to get my husband to stay in. Being the blind made the first move easy - I checked. My good fortune to watch CaityCaity bet it first - $15 - and my husband smooth call. CaityCaity, regardless of her cards, did the right thing - I showed weak, and if she didn't bet at it, DrChako certainly would have, regardless of his cards. I did my best brow furrow, and called as well. The turn brought a J. I checked again, and again, CaityCaity led the betting for $35, with my husband smooth calling again. I've now decided that both of them likely have something; although I totally gave my husband credit for holding overcards, still hoping to pounce. But I needed to make some money here. I raised, which put me all in - I only had about $33 behind. CaityCaity called, and my husband, wisely suspecting his small pocket pair had put him behind one of us (and likely his uber-conservative wife who was raising), laid down. I turned over my 7 and raked the pot - which managed to put me up to around $200, which was double my original buy in. Woot!

I wasted a few more chips over the next couple hours on a few straddles or hands that didn't pay off, and finally decided to step away with a $20 profit.

On Friday I hit it again in the early afternoon at the MGM, this time with the intent of joining CA April, Pablo, and Shelly in an easy $.50/$1 NL game. Great way to spend a little time with friends without blowing the evening's bankroll. But there wasn't a seat open.

"If you'd like to sit down in the $1/$2 NL game, we can call you when a spot opens at your friends' table." I took my Ben Franklin to the nearest open table and sat down to wait my chips. I agreed to let the button pass and play in behind it, ordering a drink while I waited. No cards hit the table and I was already down $1 for the tip! I tossed the next couple deals in the muck, and then was dealt pocket aces. Raise! Got two callers, and we see a completely random flop. Early position bets, about a 2/3 pot, and I raise. Button folds, and EP guy pauses, stares me down, and grudgingly folds his hand. I won't be here long, so I flip up my aces and rake my chips. Two hands later, they call me and I walk over to the $.50/$1 NL table with a 50% profit on my buy in.

Which, as it turns out, was all I could bring to the $.50/$1 game - $50. I cashed out the rest of my chips, and tried to get myself situated while chatting with the blogger crew. Turns out the rest of the table was friendly enough, too, and we had a lovely afternoon together. Well, other than Pablo and I were totally banned from chopping at that table partly because that's their rules, but probably because we took too much rake time debating about whether or not to chop when we finally decided against it (I had pocket 8s - I needed his other $.50!). The best hand of the table had to be when my 98 hold cards saw a flop of 7-6-5 rainbow. My good fortune that one of the other players wanted to play, and Pablo had flopped a set of sixes. I bet, other player called, Pablo raises. I min-raise him, and the other guy folds. Pablo re-raises, and I make a final raise to put him all in. I sweated the board pairing a bit, but my straight held, and I scooped a monster pot. I only had a few minutes to play before I had to leave to take a conference call, so I managed to walk away for the whole day up $150!

That evening I hit it again at the MGM, after a fabulous dinner with Betty, and after being a little up at the $1/$2 NL table, I went back to the $.50/$1 table, to protect the downside (while my husband was out playing with the boys). This table is a story in itself, highlighted by CK and I bringing all action to a halt a couple times, and my table mates were some top notch characters. I held on quite a while, but ended up losing a $40 buy-in to the guy who drew to his Q9 straight on the river, against my flopped two pairs (J-10). I bought in for another $40, just to pass time, and held on another couple hours, but lost a race of JJ against a guy drawing to the straight flush who just managed to complete the regular straight on the river. I'd call 'em river rats (which they may in fact be) . . . I guess after showing down only good hands they were hoping to catch me off-guard and managed to get there. Like I said, protecting my downside, and still left the poker room up for the day.

The blogger tourney was my next run at it, and I played long and hard, finishing 29th. Far ahead of my hubby and teammate who finished 84th, and not too far behind my other teammate who finished 22nd. Nothing huge and memorable - generally it was "get good cards, play and win with them," "get good cards, don't hit, fold them" or "fold the crap." No magic, and a table that was playing pretty tight and conservative . . . after a table change, I was all but out when my JJ went up against CK's KK. The rest is history.

I played mixed games with DrChako, Katkin and Grange at the MGM while the final table was being decided and managed to part with another $20. Cards were crap and fortunately the flops were even crappier . . . Grange couldn't get another bet out of me after he turned quads. After a dinner break, we headed to the IP to join the gang and play a little more. This one is another story unto itself, so I'll save the details for later. Suffice it to say, even with all the crazy goings on, by the time I finished Saturday night (Sunday morning?) I was only down a net $10 for the whole trip, which was probably in large part due to tips for the weekends table drinks.

Missed my favorite NL partner, but all in all, was happy enough with my play, and best of all, had lots of time to play with friends, laugh and talk and do all the people watching and player watching a girl could get in Vegas.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

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