I played a 3.5-hour session at the Oaks last night and lost $260. I couldn't win a hand to save my life, even though I was surrounded by lots of gamblers and players who played in an obvious manner. Lots of poor calling with inferior straight and flush draws. I lost my money on good starting hands with all the money in, QQ twice, AKs and AQs. I lost all four of those hands when the money was in pre-flop. I just wasn't my night.
One thing I notice is that folks with good hands stick money in the pot right away. I also notice that few people bluff but many will make horrible calls when they're on a draw. That's really a good way to make money, but giving people bad odds to make their draw. Finding out what folks have on the flop is good, and making a near pot-sized bet on the turn is where I can make my money with these gamblers.
My image at the table is tight and conservative, and perhaps a bit unfriendly. I wear glasses and dress in black clothes and say nothing. I will slowly get better and better at this game. I still have a lot to learn.