Monday, June 4, 2007


I had a real brutal 60 hand poker session yesterday that helped define for my current tilt threshold. I had AA once, AK once, and KK twice, losing all four hands for a total of $73. In the grand scheme of things, this is not that big a deal, but for some reason I was really angry with how the hands played out, especially the AK hand which I had lost to a player who cracked my Aces. He had been calling my raises a lot and I guess I felt he felt he had my number, which he certainly did yesterday. On my AK hand, the board was AT8 rainbow. There was $5.25 in the pot, so I bet $3. My opponent called. The turn was another A. All four suits were out there, so I bet $5. He called again. I figured he must have had another ace or possibly a set of 10s or 8s for a fullhouse. That would be a pretty cold deck. The river was a 5. I bet $8 and he raised to $30. I couldn’t believe I had lost this hand again, but I felt I had. I was getting almost 3-to-1 to call, so I did. He had A5, hitting a 5 on the river for a fullhouse. I was so angry I broke my computer headphones. I smashed them into a hundred pieces. I haven’t been that angry since my limit days when I played a lot of limit hold’em online and kept losing.
So what can I learn from this. Obviously, I still have a major tilt issue that comes up when I lose big hands on the river to bad beats. Had my opponent flopped the fullhouse on the flop, I think I simply would have accepted that more than the ugly beat I took. That just makes me sick, but it’s the nature of the game. I happens every now and then, and though I accept this, it still hurts when it happens. At least I wasn’t playing for hundreds of dollars.
Anyway, on the very next hand I was dealt KK and lost to TT when the Tens hit a set on the flop. It just wasn’t my day, so I left the table and focused on other things. My Aces lost to KK when the flop was QKQ. I knew I was dead when I bet small on the turn and my opponent pushed me all in for another 18. I was getting 2-to-1, but knew I was dead. It only cost $16 more to see that I was dead, and there was a small chance that he could have had AK. Nope, he had KK. Pretty brutal day.
If it weren’t for those four hands, I would have been down around $3.75 for the day.
I have two weeks to win an entry into the World Series of Poker. I’m doing everything I can to win one. I’m studying, trying to play smart, and paying attention to my game. The players online have gotten much better and are making fewer mistakes. It’s a different world from just six months ago when Party Poker closed its doors to U.S. players. I’ve been watching the PokerXFactor videos and they are helpful. The problem is everyone else is playing in a similar fashion. I’m trying to think of a way to exploit that type of play, but I’m not there yet. I’m also trying to pay more attention when I’m actually playing. It’s difficult for me to play more than one game at a time. I don’t know how players are able to play 3 and 4 hands at a time. Is it possible to play 10 hands at a time? That just wouldn’t be fun.
If I stick with it, stay patient and don’t get discouraged, I should end up on the positive side. I sure do get discouraged though, especially when the loses keep piling up. I watched the DVD The Secret over the weekend, and I liked the positive message of attracting what you want into your life. I think so much of my life has been spent not really believing I could accomplish anything. That mantra is really ingrained into me, and I realize it’s going to take consistent effort to reprogram myself into believing I can be a success in whatever I put my mind to. What if the past weren’t so difficult to break away from. What if I simply needed to will something into being in order for it to happen.
Take it one day at a time, right, starting with a positive attitude that keeps growing throughout the day. I kept that horrid passport picture of myself for a reason...that’s what I look like when I’m not smiling. I look mean and grumpy. Unpleasant. I want to change that look to something inviting and pleasant. When I smile, my entire face lightens up. It’s true. If I can smile when I take the kind of bad beat I took yesterday, that’s when I know I’m headed in the right direction.

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