Friday, January 14, 2011

It's a C Filled World

It was back to Biloxi last week. I played exclusively in the cash games. I played mostly 2-5 NL but also a few hours of 1-2 NL. I stayed away from the 5-10 games. There is no max buy in on any of the no limit games in Biloxi. Because of that all of the games play bigger than the same blind levels in Jax. I was pretty sure I didn't have the scratch to sit down in the big NL game in Biloxi. 2-5 was going to be big enough for me and my bankroll.

The 2-5 was tighter than I expected. It's possible all of the fast players were in the 5-10, but there was still plenty of money in the 2-5 game. Most people had 500+ in their stacks.

I started off the week playing very tight. I was trying to make hands and trap opponents into big bets in later streets. I rarely had a hand, however. Plus, an interesting thing seemed to be developing. Everyone was playing tight. There were nearly no pre-flop raises.

Wow, poker was changing. I thought it maybe just a trend that Jacksonville was experiencing, but it seems to be at least a southeastern thing. Maybe it's a nationwide trend, or a trend rippling throughout the entire poker world. I don't know, and I don't care.

The tight players are learning to trap the speed demons. There are now more tight players than years past because they have survived. The speed demons don't have as many of the complete idiots as there is a larger percentage of people who, although being tight players, still understand the value of a hand.

But, with all of the tight players the games become terribly slow. Each pot is small, and hands are routinely checked around. Once that happens one has to either make hands or make moves. I was fortunate and started making hands and having it happen often enough to look like I was making moves. I was getting paid off.

In one particularly passive game I was raising in all of the pots I entered. We played bigger pots, and on my terms. Things were running smoothly and had more than doubled my money. This was good times. The drinks were free, and I'm sure there is a requirement of at least a C cup to be a cocktail waitress at the Beau. Life is good.

Three guys left in quick succession from the 1,2,and 3 seats. They had been short and had gone broke or almost broke one after the other. Three new gents sat down.

The new guys looked familiar. I had played with them all before. They were fast players. There was another new guy to my right. I picked up 10-J of clubs. There was one limper to me so I raised it up. Everyone folded and it came back around to the new guy, he raised it another Hundred. I folded quickly, without thought.

In a way it was good that happened. His re-raise made me slow down a bit. I tightened up and decided to sit back watch and see what was going to happen with this new batch of fellows. I expected fireworks.

I wish I had a story about a wild hand that was played. One where a pile of money was in the middle and someone was faced with calling all of their chips, but alas, no such tale.

These guys were on lockdown.

The game is certainly changing. I racked up and left the game for another.

There was a tale I had heard about a guy in the 5-10 game the night before who had lost 30k. The next day a guy pointed him out. The man he pointed out was the guy in the three seat of my game earlier that week. The story was he got drunk and was pissing it away thousands at a time. I have no idea if it's true or not. If so, he was playing vastly different than when I ran into him. I guess he loosened up.

Biloxi was fun. The ride was good over and back. Well, there was a tire change along the way, but it went forward without much incident. It was a good time. Of course, it is better to be home.

Since my trip I haven't won a nickel here in Jax, but it'll change, I think, I hope, I pray.

Poker- A hard Way to Make an Easy Livin'. I don't know who first said it, but sage advice they spoke. Maybe it was Doyle. I guess it doesn't matter much. I've got to go get the cards in the air.

Codsey out.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

What do I get?

Hi there. Norton here. Every once in a while I find a need to hijack this guys blogs and facebook accounts so I can make sure he remembers to think about important things going on in the world.

As you know I declared myself Emperor of these, the United States of America, a little while ago. I disbanded the decision makers in Washington. They didn't go home. Along the way, however, we had a national election.

You all know the outcome. The country made sweeping changes at moving our country from a left moving agenda, at least fiscally speaking, towards a right moving agenda. The debates on the social issues that so deeply divide the Far Right and the Far Left are still yet to come. But, fiscally speaking we seem to be coming to a consensus.

We must improve the economy. We must create jobs. We must control the ever expanding national debt (it went over 14 trillion, that's 14,000 billion, this week). Higher taxes and increased regulations limit the expanse of the economy. Again, raising taxes will slow the economy. Therefore, we must reduce government spending. Once the economy improves revenue for the Government will increase. That extra revenue must be well spent. The debt is an issue for all.

I have heard different news organizations ask various incoming members of the Congress where exactly these cuts should fall. Wisely, none of them answered the question. What a bombshell. Do you honestly believe any of these folks want to be the first person to say who is getting a pay cut this year?

A bunch of the decision makers went back home following the elections that took place last November. They went back to their mansions. They went back to the country clubs. They went back to their property in the islands. They jumped into their limos for the disappointing ride to the airport. They had failed.

America seems proud to recall that this country was created, and served as such for over 200 years, to be the greatest single country in the entire world. Our founders came here to be free. When the monarchy in England became too obtrusive our founders revolted.

The 112th Congress was just sworn in and is due to have a reading of our Constitution. I have heard from some that this is a waste of time. Is it? How many of you have read it, lately, and had it explained to you? Do you know what's in it? Do you know the history of the of it all?

I know less of it than I would like, truly. I'm pretty sure Joy Behar knows less about the Constitution than most Americans. That may not be true, how would I know what she's read of the Constitution? But, she sounds ignorant when she says reading it in Congress is a big waste of time. Her questioning if the reading of the Constitution is Congress's way of bowing down to the Tea Party is rather rhetorical. I'll answer it for her... YES.

The Tea Party is an loosely held together organization whose members all seem to have one thing in common. They all believe in, and wish to more closely follow, what is written in the Constitution. I think the Congress is also starting to figure it out. So yes, their reading of the Constitution today is sort of bowing down to the wants of the people who elected them. Imagine that, doing what your constituents wish. A novel idea.

Some have been so bold to say that the Constitution is a racist document written by racists for racists. They site the 3/5ths compromise as proof. How could our founders put in writing that slaves equal 3/5ths of a person if they weren't all racists?

Remember something. They had to remain together because divided they would surely fall. Not all of the founders were racists. Some abhorred slavery. I could quote a bunch right now, but I won't, google it, it is fact.

Back in 1787, when the Constitution was being argued, the southern slave holders wanted the Constitution to stay out of the issue of slavery, that it was not a national issue. They would not ratify the Constitution without some sort of compromise. So, the Constitution we ended up with included provisions to protect the institution of slavery, as well as provisions to hopefully keep it from spreading.

It allowed slaves to count as 3/5's a person for the purpose of counting how many delegates a state could send to Washington. It also meant that those slaves would be counted as people. at least 3/5's of them, for purpose of a state's obligation to taxes. It also denied Congress the ability to halt the importation of new slaves until 1808, as well as forbid free states from enacting laws to protect fugitive slaves (both compromises for the south).

Now listen, at face value this sounds like we were a bunch of racists. Without these compromises we never would have remained a country. From 1787 onward the country moved closer and closer to abolishing slavery altogether until finally we had a terrible war to decide the issue once and for all in 1861.

Reading the Constitution is not enough. Today, those folks in Washington should be made to learn the history behind the words. Give them some material, provide them some time to study, and test them all. Members of congress work 123 days per yer. Read that again if you wish. 123 days out of 365. Two thirds of the time they are doing something other than what we pay them to do. I guess they use that time to get re-elected. I don't really know.

As Emperor I hereby decree one thing. Start by discussing what it is the national government is supposed to do for the American people.

Here is an example. I agree the National government should regulate private business to a point. Should the government shut down oil drilling off the coast of our states because of an accident? Of course not.

Listen, we still need oil. Oil drilling and the transport of said oil is still going on in the rest of the world. We haven't decreased our use at all. Shutting down those offshore oil wells did nothing but put a lot of Americans out of work. You overstepped your bounds, plain and simple. You did it using rash decision making at a time when you had no idea what to do. Big business is not the enemy.

Believe me, if you don't know what to do it is better to do nothing. Stay out of it. It's not your problem to fix. BP handled it through apparently no help from you. They admitted fault and completely paid for the clean up. You even kept foreign clean up ships away from the gulf. Why are you meddling?

The National Government is supposed to take in 2.57 Trillion dollars this year. How about you try to first figure out the bare necessities before you begin your cuts. Let's see... Military, yup, food to be sure your people don't starve, yup, basic shelter, yup, a meaningful education, yup, running water, yup, some sort of transportation, yup. I can go on if you wish.

"We hold these truths to be self evident. That all Men are created equal. That they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights. That among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness".

Recognize that? It's the preamble to our Declaration of Independence. It's what we sent King George to tell him we are pissed off and not going to listen to him any longer. We have a better way. Now, ask yourself Congressmen, what do you need to do to meet those criteria? Because I'll tell you there is the another line that reads...

"That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the RIGHT of the people to alter or ABOLISH it".

It's not going to be pretty. There will be riots in the streets and maybe worse. If you reign in the long arm of government spending there will be many unhappy folks. It will be necessary, however. Otherwise we will just be passing the problem on to our children or grandchildren the same way our parents have done.

If you live in the slums of some major city, I apologize to you for what you will experience. If you live with your mom, and your dad is nowhere to be found, you must understand that is not the country's fault. That is your parents fault.

You have food, and you have shelter, and you have a school to go to and a way to get there. Now, get out there and do something with yourself. We talk ourselves blue in the face claiming anyone, with enough hard work and determination, can become successful in this country.

The feelings of entitlement have to go away. You're not entitled. Your unlucky that you were born into the situation you are in but there are avenues available to you to get out. You have to want it. If you don't make it, and instead think you and yours are entitled to some free ride you are mistaken.

I know that sounds rough. But it is a far better shake than you will receive in most other countries. Other places like Cuba, N Korea, The European Union, and the former Soviet Union are finding out or have already that government can't be all things to everybody. They are failing, miserably.

Life (don't kill me), Liberty (don't arrest me for no reason), and the Pursuit of Happiness (give me attainable avenues so I at least have a chance in this life). The rest is up to me.

Norton out.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

2011 Opens with a Bang!

I awoke Monday morning, the first working day of the New Year, at a very early hour. I had gone to bed the night before at a very early hour, like around 9 PM or so. I guess I can only sleep for seven straight hours before the need to relieve myself pulls me from a dead slumber. At least I woke up. Age is catching me, already. I decided it would be best for everyone involved, not only at the present time but also in the near future, if I just left M to sleep. Repercussions would follow for yours truly if I did not let her sleep until at least 6:30. These are the types of things it takes a person like me 20 odd years to learn.

Or, maybe it took 40 years to learn life is not all about me.

I quietly stole into the living room and switched on the tv. I also figured I would pay January's first of the month bills. So, after 10 minutes of that I was thoroughly disgusted. I'm not even going to waste energy bitching about it. Energy, it would appear, is extremely valuable.

While watching tv I learned about a flock of birds, about a thousand total, that died during a fireworks display. At least, that is one theory. The thinking is the birds were scared into shock by the loud blast of the fireworks. I guess that could have happened. I have to have doubts though when you consider there has never been a recorded incident of fireworks killing a flock of birds in all of history. At least, if there were an incident of it, and I guess now there will be one available to all at the click of the mouse, I have not yet heard of it.

I saw a lot of birds dead on the ground one time in my life. It was in upstate NY, near the golf course I grew up on, following a massive Microburst that wrecked the cart barn. We all thought it had been a tornado, and I suppose a Microburst is very close to a tornado, but it sent that cart barn all over the 18th green. Later that day, as I was sitting on the crapper and looking out the window, I noticed the birds.

There must have been at least a hundred lying on the ground in the cow field next to the house. The State said the deaths were caused by the ultra low pressure associated with the storm. That many dead birds makes a person think, for sure. The storm killed those birds is what we assumed, and the news agreed. Whatever, we had to postpone the first round of our Club Championship.

I decided to facebook because, really, the news pisses me off. Is anyone investigating the NYC union workers who decided to plow more slowly in order to make a statement against recent cuts and layoffs? I hope that is not true. Come on News folks, investigate on it, report on it, and even though you may put your own slant on the whole thing please give us the facts, at least. The level of investigative reporting in nearly all news media may be at an all time low.

I switched the channel to a one of those rated R, but are close to X, movies on one of the movie stations. Don't worry, I just kept facebooking, but at least the news was off. I looked for something on the military channel, or History, or NatGeo, or Sci-fi, or Comedy Central, but the movie offered the most potential.

Man, getting up early sucks. Maybe I should party more like the old days, or play poker all night, getting to sleep around 4 am. It's easy to sleep the day away after an all-nighter. Of course, again, I've learned things in 20 odd years.

I went back to bed around 6. M was warm, and soft, and smooth. I'm pretty fortunate. Since I had let her sleep earlier she was in a pleasant mood when she woke up. The day was going well.

The rest of the morning was pretty standard, and I've written about it before. I started to the poker room around 10:15. It opens at 10, but people are slow in showing up. I got into a full 5-10 No Limit game pretty quickly.

It was a pretty wild game. It was dominated by the play of one person, and his name is DP, or Double Penetration for long. He is an incredibly aggressive, and very knowing player. That, my friends, is an extremely dangerous poker player. There are a lot of people who try to play just like that.

People want to emulate that style of play because it is the most fun. You raise with any two cards, sometimes you make a good hand, but regardless you bet, bet, bet. At least, that is what it appears to be to the uninitiated.

Unbridled aggression will get snapped off by other players who are aware. The key is to be able to judge well enough as to when your opponents have a hand they are willing to take all of the way. By raising so often, and so much pre-flop, the pots become massive. If the pot becomes large enough, relative to the size of your stack, you are very quickly facing a decision for all of your chips.

DP can judge well. Others cannot. I make my money from others who cannot. Against DP I try to make a hand, and hold on for dear life. I don't play the same style as DP. It's too difficult and I have too many bills to pay. I guess I'm not good enough yet, or have a big enough bankroll to pull it off. Someday, maybe. I can dream.

I did make what appeared to be a horrible play. Of course, I ended up catching a miracle card in that hand to double up early. Here is what happened.

I had pocket queens, and I raised in early position, two people called, one of them the big blind. The flop came jack high with a spade draw.

The big blind checked. I bet 100. The third player called after thinking about it for a while, I thought he may have a jack, or maybe another pocket pair below queens. It didn't look like he had a flush draw, I thought he would have called quicker with the flush draw. It was now on the big blind. It's important to note that I dind't think this first caller had a flush draw, making it more likely the Big blind had the flush draw, if he played further that is.

I put this man, the Big blind, on literally any two cards but favoring either a pocket pair or some sort of suited cards in any range. He could also have a AJ, or maybe even KJ or QJ. I made this assumption as he was readying his play. He mumbled something to the player on his right, and moved all-in.

I thought about it for about 15 seconds, and called all of my chips with my pocket queens. I thought it was way more likely he had one pair, good kicker, or a flush draw with an overcard, then it was he had flopped a set. The third guy folded quickly.

Of course, the Big blind had flopped a set of deuces. But, thankfully a queen came on the turn, and then another queen on the river. Quads. Wow, that was very cool.

Everyone wanted to know how I didn't know that he had flopped a set. I didn't tell them out loud, but they've all played with him before as well. Now keep in mind, I have played with this man many times, and he is wild, wild, wild. If he flopped the set, then he had me. I've seen him move in with a draw, or a hand that is just awful, too often before.

After that I managed to play solid and not stick all of my money in drawing to just two outs. I flopped a full house against DP. He paid me off. He kind of has to because he knows I'm not a dip-shit. I know he could have a weak hand. If he checks to me I'm going to bet with marginal hands as well. He checked on the turn and I was lucky enough to have a monster. He had something because he called me down. I didn't ask to see.

I left before 5. I don't know how it all ended up. There was a lot of money on the table. DP can tilt, but I haven't seen it in a while. He probably busted them all. He plays too well. If he made any big hands at all, like two pair or better, then he got paid off.

Those other guys, the regulars in that game, don't like his style of play too much. They secretly want to play that way, but are unable for various reasons. I'm pretty sure they just don't like winners in their game. That makes me laugh. They like it if you play wild and loose, but you're not allowed to run over them. If you hit any hands while playing wild and loose then you are the devil.

They don't like how I play very tight and conservative. At least, that is my impression of their feelings. Just because I have headphones on does not mean I can't hear what's being said around the table, especially if I think you're talking about me, which I always do because this narcissism is still not completely cured.

So they don't like wild and loose, if you win. They don't like tight and conservative, if you win. They like players who play as they do, and lose while THEY win. I'm chuckling to myself as I write this because it is probably close to true.

Dinner was soup and sandwiches. Everyone seemed to like it. I know I did. How come I make and hour long dinner with two sides and some nice chicken or beef and the kids turn their nose up at it? I make soup and sandwiches and they eat like they were starving.

It was a good day.

Codsey out.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Happy New Year!

It is that time again. It's now a new year and with the coming of the new year comes the inevitable New Year Resolution. I think you must capitalize it whenever you write it. It's that important. I've been sitting here considering my past NYR's (New Year Resolutions, since NYR takes fewer key strokes) and am slowly beginning to get a better handle on myself. Maybe I should have left the layers of that onion alone because my eyes are starting to sweat.

How many NYR's have you managed to stay true to? I have not been faithful to many of them. I think the reason I have forgotten most NYR's by about February 15th is because it's really difficult to remain on any diet for more than 6 weeks. My Resolutions are always centered on trimming down the waistline!! I'm not sure why either.

It may be that I am too fat. True enough. I am probably in the government range for obese. But, I can ride a bike, jog a little ways, walk 18 holes of golf, and spend all day in bed (if you get my drift) without too much trouble.

I probably always want to lose weight because fit people are more popular. At least, I believe most people feel that way. Except when it comes to comedy. I haven't laughed at a single episode of Drake and Josh since that goofy kid lost his first 60 pounds. Hey, I have kids, I see things.

So, I probably want to be more popular, and since fit and healthy has been an elusive quarry I will have to find a way to become funnier. Fat and overbearing, not good. Fat and somber, downright distasteful. Fat and nagging is grounds for divorce.

See, the only way to get on in this world, and not be thin, is to be jovial. Come on, you know you laughed your ass off when Chris Farley was trying out for Chippendale's in the dance off against the muscular Patrick Swazey on SNL. I can guarantee you tried not to, but laughed anyway at John Belushi stuffing his face in the cafeteria line in Animal House.

Maybe I can just open a restaurant that serves meals in smaller proportions. It probably wouldn't make it, however. People want HUGE HELPINGS. They want to feel like they are not getting ripped off.

When you pay $7.99 for a Chinese buffet you damn sure are going to have a few extra crab rangoons so you can feel like you didn't get taken. No one wants to pay $7.99 for a plate of rice and vegetables with a cup of miso soup. That would mean we had been suckers.

At my proportions friendly restaurant I'd have to charge too much to make a sufficient profit, and people would feel cheated. The customers wouldn't understand that my 1/4 burger for $4 is better than the 1/2 pounder they would get next door for $6. It'd better for them because it is more in line with USDA recommendations. Both restaurants would have the same overhead. It would fail.

Ok, back to my Resolutions..

How can I be funnier? I could stop talking about politics. Wait, scratch that. I can talk politics but I need to pick on the right people when I do it. Obama is OFF LIMITS! Name calling is out too unless I throw in the word Teabagger.

Alright, I was being ridiculous again. Seriously, I need to make some changes. I have to play more poker, watch less television (except Jersey Shore), learn to beat my son in Halo, learn the two handed golf swing (it's a long story), and write more. Writing is therapeutic, but damned if it isn't time consuming.

Anyone ever hear of that Dragon voice recognition software? Maybe that's the ticket for me. That way I can talk, which I like a lot, and the computer can do the actual writing. I always think of this stuff after Christmas.

I want to lose weight. I'm off bread.

Codsey out.