Tuesday, November 30, 2004

I finally did it. Yes this blogger has finally played poker online for REAL MONEY. I know, it's about time!

Last night, I got the wife and kids to bed about 10:45, did a few chores, rebooted my clunky PC, checked email, and updated the blog. Then the fun began. I closed out my blog and left my Yahoo email open to work on between hands. I clicked on the Party Icon on my screen and logged in.

I went to the .5/1 tables and was carefully random about my table selection. The average pots seemed to be between 6 and 10 dollars, so I chose a generically named table with 9 players with an average pot size of 8 dollars. I decided to bring 30 dollars to the table from my Party account.

I then sat out in the 10 seat until the BB. I wanted to observer the other players and I had 5 hands to do it. Seat one to my left had the best player at the table. Great! Seats 2 through 7 had generic calling station fishies. Seats 8 and 9 had players that were fairly good. So now I had a quick read on the table.

Did I always follow that read? Of course not! Did I follow it at all? Yes I did. If the calling stations raised, I folded most of the time. Because when they raised, they actually had good cards. Otherwise they called 90 percent of the time.

How did I play? Not too bad. I was way to passive most of the time. I did miss seeing possible straights on the board - twice. I got into a betting war once with the best player at the table over a flush. I had second best, he had the nut. The highest pocket pair I had was 88. The best hole cards other than those I saw were AJo.

My best hand was when I was on the button and had QJo I limped in and saw a flop of xJQ. I bet and it was down to myself, best play in seat 1 and good player in seat 9. The turn was another Q giving me Queens over Jacks. The Q also made it 3 diamonds on the board for a flush. The river was a rag diamond. No possible straight. Bet, Bet, Bet. I took down the biggest pot I saw at the table that evening - 22.75.

I played for a little less than an hour. I ended up 5BB for the session. (Best player was up about 40BB when I left.)

What did I learn? I need to follow my reads more often. I need to be more patient in my starting hand selection. I need to read the board better and not miss the possible straights my opponent has. I need to remember poker is a long term session, not just 35 or so hands. Limping in from BB with the hammer is fun (did not catch the flop - fold.) I really enjoy playing poker online. I need to learn a lot more about poker.

Hopefully I will get to play a couple more times this week.

Monday, November 29, 2004


Tonight is probably the night I dip my toes into the water. I just have to get the kids and the wife to bed so I have some free time. I think I have the right attitude, I have been studying the materials I have so far, and I am a little nervous. Reminds me of the feeling I used to get before a final exam for which I was well prepared.

I plan on hitting the .5/1 tables at Party. Yes it is fishy. But where else should a new fish start? And, no I am not giving out my screen name. I think this is something I need to do on my own. I am going to be nervous enough without the one or two readers I have starting conversations with me. Once I get comfortable with playing real money, I will give out my screen name.

It was a good weekend. We (Mrs. One, and children) went out and walked part of the C & O Canal Towpath on Sunday afternoon. The kids had been cooped up in the house and both of them and Mrs. One were bouncing off the walls. The kids had fun walking under a train bridge that crosses the Potomac river. Just as we passed the bridge a train crossed it. They had seen trains go by before, but not one so high up above them. I figure we walked maybe a mile to a mile and a half. Not bad for a two and a four year old.

Back at home it was nap time, and I got to catch up on my "important reading". A few of the blogs I read I had a couple of weeks of catching up to do. I will be adding to the blog roll in the next few days.

Wish me luck (or at least wish me skill. I will need both tonight.)

Hopefully the next report I have will be on my first on-line real money experience.

Sunday, November 28, 2004

Still no Poker

The past five days have been hectic. We did not get the chance to travel to see family this Thanksgiving. We decided to stay at home. Yikes! Three days of rain, two childrens videos played over and over and over, and still no POKER. Don't get me wrong, I love the kids and had a great time trying to change the stories on the videos. My four year old was to smart for that and would not let me get away with it.

I did get to see some of the WSOP marathon on ESPN this weekend, but I had seen those already. Ho Hum.

Hopefully I can get Party funded today from my Neteller account. Any idea on how long that will take?

Soon, yes, soon I will be the newest fish out there. Ah, to be able to swim free in and around the smaller fishies. Hiding in the kelp from the sharks. Coming out when the coast is clear to river them with the hammer!

Enough! I need to get back and do some chores.

Monday, November 22, 2004

I'm Ba-ack!

The following was written over the past several days. Lots of things going on...

I was home sick the last Thursday and Friday. It is no fun having a swollen, sore throat, temperature, and aches and pains. I was so tired on Thursday, that after dropping the kids off at daycare, I came home and went to bed. I woke up once at noon, had a drink of water, then slept until 5 o'clock. Friday I was a little better, but my wife came home from work with the same symptoms. Yikes, I'm sick and I have to take care of everyone. Luckily the kids did not get what we had, but it might have been better if they had gotten sick. It is really hard to catch a 2 and a 4 year old when you are sick.

I can't believe how itchy I am getting to play poker. I have not played online in over a week and a half. I know I will need to control that itchiness when I actually start playing. If I don't, I will play way too loose.

Last Tuesday I checked on Neteller. It turns out that even after I triple checked the account number I entered a couple of weeks before, I still managed to drop a digit. The fine folks at Neteller Support said they would reset my verification process so I could correct that and try again.

I found it strange that Neteller did not have some kind of reset policy. It would be simple to add a response check, say if the account was not verified in one week, Neteller would reset the verification process and notify the customer. Just a suggestion. Otherwise Neteller has been fantastic in their response time to my emails and calls for support. Less than ten minutes for a reply to an email and in queue on the phone for less that 10 seconds. Either they do not have many problems with their product or they have a first class support staff (or both!).

The weekend before last, my wife had another of her curriculum conferences. She is helping to write state-wide curriculum for eighth grade English and Reading classes. This meant about 17 hours on the road, overnight with Mother-in-Law, overnight with Mother, and two very active children (ages 2 & 4). Driving from my Parent's house to the resort early on Sunday morning, we drove the back way through the lake area. It was foggy and very beautiful. This is a "new" lake - about 15 years old. We came around a corner at one point and there was no fog on this section of the lake. The was a tall dead pine tree with a recently used eagle's nest perched at the top about 30 feet from the shore in the middle of the lake. It was an amazing site.

Question for Grubby: Where in or around DC are you currently? I work in Silver Spring.

Iggy - One good news item, one bad news item.

The bad first...

Derailment Spills 20,000 Gallons of Beer

Reported by Associated Press

CHILHOWIE, Va. - Fourteen cars of an 83-car Norfolk Southern train derailed near an industrial park, leaving the area smelling like a brewery Thursday.
About 20,000 gallons of beer leaked from three cars of the Roanoke-bound train, said railway spokesman Robin Chapman.
No one was injured when the cars skipped the tracks about 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, Chapman said.
Investigating officers said the leak did not contaminate any nearby water sources nor affect any highways.
"Everything was contained away from the creek," said Jack Tolbert Jr. of the Virginia Department of Emergency Management.
Authorities were investigating the cause of the derailment. All trains scheduled to use the tracks through Chilhowie were held until they were cleared Thursday evening.

The slightly good news is it was not Guinness.

The good news...


Nov 11 2004

reported in the Daily Record (www.dailyrecord.co.uk)

THE brewers of Guinness are offering free pints to lure drinkers back into Irish pubs.
Diageo have blamed Ireland's smoking ban for a fall in the sales of 'the black stuff'.
Now they have written to Irish pubs for details of customers who are fond of the drink to offer them free Guinness vouchers.
Pub regulars will receive two vouchers to use in their local.

Will this mean that Iggy takes a trip to Ireland?


Neteller just came through with verification!!!!! Yes. One step closer to becoming fish-food.
I sent my deposit to Neteller the other day. They should have it in my account in "4-5 days". Maybe I will get to play real money during the Thanksgiving weekend. (That way I can blog about poker for a change.

Hope you enjoyed my attempt at the "mini-uber-post"!

Thursday, November 18, 2004

I'm Still Around

It has been a busy few days... I had material for a mini-uber-blog on Friday, but I did not have time to post it.

I was out of town over the weekend (and Monday as well).

I should have time to post late tomorrow evening (11/18). Should be a long one.

Take care.

Friday, November 12, 2004

Lovely, Just Lovely

The corporation I work for has decided to raise the production level at work by blocking all sites that end in *blogspot.com. This means I can not keep up to date on my important reading at work and confine it to the hour or hour and a half of uninterrupted free time I have in the evening (usually after 11PM). What is even more fun is that I only have a lousy 26.6 dial-up access. DSL is not available where I live. Cable modem is too expensive, as is satellite.

On a brighter(?) note, I was able to contact Neteller this evening. I asked them to either reset my account so I could begin the verification process again or to resend the small deposit amount so I could verify. They sent back an email saying if I had not received the small amount to contact them again and they would resend within 1 to 2 business days. Huh? Isn't that what I requesting in my first email. This saga will continue...

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

My first introduction to Poker via Computer

The year was 1974. At that time my family lived in New Mexico. I was in the seventh grade.
I had blossomed into a good student 2 years before in 5th grade. I especially liked math and science.

At our middle-school they were running an experimental math program -- Hey, it was the 70's. The first half of the year everyone got regular seventh grade math. At the end of the first half of the year there was a math test. If you failed, you would get seventh grade math for the rest of the year. If you passed, you could choose which math class you want.

I passed.

The first 9 week period of the second half of the year, there were choices like Consumer math, beginning geometry, and Probability. I chose Probability. I already knew that probability was like the odds of something happening and I thought figuring out the math behind it would be fun. So we figured out the odds of things. Such as, in a room of about 25 people the odds of 2 people sharing the same birthday was about 50-50. We also spent class time flipping pennies and documenting it. My favorite part of the class was when we started calculating odds on 5 card stud poker hands without wild cards. We actually got to spend class time dealing poker!

The second 9 week period of the second half of the year, we got to switch math classes again. This time I chose "Computer Math". It was taught by the same teacher as the Probability class. He just happened to be taking a "Computer Math" class at the University of New Mexico that year and he struggled to stay 2 weeks ahead of us in his instruction.

For me the highlight of the class for me was when our school borrowed a dial up terminal from one of the high schools in the area and we got to use a computer first hand! The terminal itself was a DECwriter teletype terminal (no monitor - output was printed on continuous paper) with a built-in acoustic coupler (early modem technology) and transfered data to the mainframe computer at UNM at the blazing speed of 128 baud (roughly 128 bits per second).

I made sure my parents drove me to school early every day for the 2 weeks we had the terminal so I could maximize my time. The second morning on the terminal, I found where the games were. I played Star Trek, Tic-Tac-Toe, some kind of cannon game, a moon lander game, black jack, and then I saw it - Poker.

It was a simple game, you started with 100 dollars, ante was one dollar, it dealt you a hand, you bet or folded. If you bet, the computer compared your hand to it's own hand (it never folded) and you either won or lost the bet. I played this game during 3 sessions in that two weeks for about 20 minutes apiece.

I was hooked!

Monday, November 08, 2004

Still no word from Neteller

It is now Monday again and still no word from Neteller. I will be contacting them this evening if I have the time with all I have to do tonight when I get home.

For those of you who just found this site... I am in the process of setting up and verifying my Neteller account. They were supposed to put a micro-deposit (a couple of cents) into my bank account between 10/26 and 10/29. I have yet to see this micro-deposit. I have also not yet had the time to push it along with Neteller. Who knows, maybe I will rename the blog "The Neteller Report". ;-}

As you may be able to tell, I am somewhat patient with this issue. The reason for this is that Poker is not my #1 priority. It may come close in the future if I get good enough at it, but my family will always come first. That is a promise I have made and will always keep. So this weekend, I spent my time doing laundry at the laundro-mat with my wife and the young'uns. It takes a lot of concentration to keep track of 6 dryers, 3 hampers of clothes to fold, and a 4 year old and a 2 year old who insist on personally inspecting each washer. I really hope they come to fix our washer soon.

For those of you still reading such mundane, non-poker-related material, please go read the blogs listed on the right as well as BadBlood plays Poker and It ain't gambling!. (Who may be listed on the right by the time you read this.) (The blogger spell checker wants to replace "BadBlood" with "BodyBuilder"?!?!?!?)

I am really looking forward to reading about Al's recent vacation. He just got back and will be posting his trip report soon.

Felicia may be back from Foxwoods in the next few days. She always writes up an excellent report. I do hope that when the (ill-fated?) WPPA TV show(s) show up on the Game Show Network in January, that she will give us an informed critique as well as more of the behind the scenes "fun".

As always any and all comments/questions are welcome.

Friday, November 05, 2004

Welcome New Readers


I get pimped by Iggy and I don't have any real-money poker content yet! Yes boys and girls, I have been playing with play money - at Party and (gasp!) Yahoo Games.

I have been playing poker there for about 2 and a half months now. I estimate that I have played about 2500 hands and am up and estimated 10BB/100 hands. Yes I know that will change when I go to real money. Yes I know that the play will be (somewhat) better. But I think I am getting some valuable experience. I am learning to fish. And where better than in the fishiest places I can find.

About 90% of what I have been playing has been 5/10 play money limit HE at Party. I really want to get limit down before I go into PL and NL. (Although I may show up at the Grublog Poker Classic later this month. Have you ever known a blogger to turn down Dead Money? Check for details!)

In addition to the playing, I have been reading just about every poker blog in site. So far I have read all of Chris Halverson and Maudie and a couple of others. I am in the middle of reading everything that AlCantHang has on his blog. (I just hope there is still a supply of SoCo left on the Island after he leaves!)

On the book front, I am currently reading Positively Fifth Street by James McManus. Mostly because the Ted Binion murder trial he covers in the book is currently being re-tried. My next book, I think will be Small Stakes Hold'em. I have chosen this mostly on the overwhelming endorsement the blogging community.

Any and all comments or questions are welcome.

More on my Neteller situation later…

Until then... Hold'em, Fold'em, Blog about it!

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

The Day After

Sorry, not going to talk politics now.

I played on Party last night - play money - because Neteller in there infinite wisdom, has not yet deemed me worthy of account activation.
Anyway, I played an hour and was up 6 BB on a 5/10 Limit table.

Oh, well! More pokery goodness later today hopefully.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Waiting for Neteller

I tried to activate Neteller this past Tuesday. They are supposed to deposit a micro-amount into my account so that I can verify. Nothing yet. I will check again with them tonight, as I am at work now. Is it normal for Neteller to take a week to do what they say they are going to do in 3 or 4 days tops? I will have to remember this in the future.

Sorry for the short post today. If Neteller comes through, there may be a post later tonight. Until then, keep bloggin' (readin', holdin' and foldin').