Monday, August 11, 2008

Weekend Recharge

Man. A nice weekend of no poker whatsoever. No mtts. No sngs. No frigging FTOPS. And I have got to say, I am feeling gooooood this morning. You know it's bad when just staying away from the game for a few days feels so dam good.

I have really taken some sick losses lately. I don't mean in big spots so much (though many have been), but rather some just disgusting hands the way they all played out in the end. I'm still seething over getting pokerstarsed hard in Pauly's tournament last week, and that was a full week ago for crying out loud. But pokerstars has previously pissed me off so much that I didn't play there for a fucking year, and it's sad how quickly I get reminded why. When some f-wad is literally trying to lose and then stars hands him the most recockulous flop imaginable in a totally unreadable situation to stack my far better hand, it just brings me right back to all those feelings I've had over most of the past few years about stars. I don't know what I'm actually trying to say, because it's not like I actually believe that pokerstars if fixed or anything -- I've had far too much success on that site to think it is anything but totally on the up-and-up just like full tilt -- but that doesn't stop my brain from recognizing the patterns on the sites and reacting to them. When dickheads are calling large preflop reraises with 75o and then flopping straights against high pocket pairs, with A2s and then flopping trip 2s, it has to make any thinking person wonder why they keep playing at that site.

And the shit hasn't just been happening on stars either. It's just been a bad couple of weeks for me for sure. That's why this weekend was so enjoyable for me. On a whim I decided to take my girls home to my parents' house for the weekend, where they absolutely love to go and hang out with their grandparents, swim in the pool and eat some good old-fashioned Philly food. I will admit to having eaten not one but two Philly cheesesteaks over just the four meals I was home with them this weekend, and dam is that shit good. It's sad, really, how impossible it is to get a truly good Philly steak anywhere in New York City. I mean, this is the biggest, baddest, best city in the world, and the food from all walks of life and all ethnicities and geographic areas is known the world around, and yet you can't get a dam Philly steak anywhere to save your life. Oh sure, plenty of restaurants have a Philly steak on the menu, but when you actually order it, it's not thinly-shaved top round steak grilled in succulent frying oil on a fresh, fluffy Philly-style bun. Typically it is some crappy filet mignon, sliced maybe 4 or 5 times and then laid out on a toasted piece of garlic bread or some shit. As a Philly guy, let's just say it is a major insult and leave it at that.

Anyways, this weekend I chowed down on some real Philly steak right from the Philadelphia area, had a blast with my kids, and completely avoided poker. Until I got back late on Sunday and found perennial tournament hater Miami Don not only running way deep in the Bodog 250k guaranteed for one of his biggest tournament scores ever, but I also learned that Don went nuts this weekend and cashed for another two large or so in a few other mtt's over the past few days. Seeing another blogger really start figuring shit out mtt-wise is what it's all about, and it being Don is especially cool for me since we have spent so much time together chatting about the game, about tournament strategy, and really just bitching to each other about the successes we wish we were having in our respective poker pursuits.

So that right there was my one and only poker highlight of the weekend, and I have to say that I liked it that way. Now for tonight I had previously qualified for this $1060 buyin FTOPS nlh tournament that I have played I think once before, and I am inclined to give it a go again tonight after a weekend away to recharge. If I'm not feeling it I will surely unregister and keep the nice wad of cash for another day, but one of these days I figure I will play well and avoid the sickening suckouts which have twice dusted me out just short of the money in the full tilt 1k buyin events and hit a nice score. I certainly feel up to the challenge myself, even though I have to acknowledge that the 1k buyin tournaments are a much, much harder field to play against than my usual $26 and $50 rabble. So come on by tonight during the 9pm ET 1k FTOPS event and see if I am still alive and kicking, and otherwise maybe I'll see you elsewhere on the felt during the evening's pokerings.

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Blogger HighOnPoker said...

Hey Hoy. After reading your and Don's recent posts, it got me thinking and I have a question for you. I think we can all accept that tournament poker can be high variance. After all, you mention your recent bad luck and how it has held you back, AND you mention how Don not only cashed in one tourney, but a few tourneys in one weekend.

So, my question is this: When a player goes on a run and wins a few tourneys in a weekend, is that a sign of skill or luck or is it indiscernible?

1:06 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Jordan, it's gotta be both. I have had several periods where I know I am playing better poker than I have been, where my reads are more or less spot-on, my timing is impeccable, etc., and I know a lot of it has to do with me just being "on". But having lived through many such periods, it is far from lost on me that I also got very lucky to not run into Aces, pick up QQ vs KK or run into flopped sets, etc. So it's definitely a combination of both skill and luck when you're running good mtt-wise.

2:04 AM  
Blogger Poker Brian said...

I got pokerstarred too in Pauly's tourney. Both times I had a higher pair vs a lower pair and they setted on me.

I had one guy at my table who only played hands I was in or raised, and he beat me every time with lesser hands. Pokerstars can suck my ass.

As for Philly stakes, nobody undertsands that all Phillies outside of philly are crap. Gimme a Geno's wit marinara, shrooms, and swiss.

4:19 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Can't say that I agree with the marinara, mushrooms or the cheese (I'm a no-dairy guy myself), but I hear ya on Geno's.

Personally I like Ish Kabibble's which is right around the corner from the real popular places, I think maybe on 3rd Street?

5:20 AM  

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