Saturday, January 28, 2006

Goal #1, and Doctor's Orders

Thanks for everybody who has voted in my poll below and made comments. It really does help to know who is reading your blog. If you haven't voted so far, please go down to the post below and put your vote in for what type and what levels of poker you play. Thanks.

Last weekend, I put down some hard and fast immediate (next few months) goals that I would like to attain. The good news is that I have reached my goal #1 which was to increase the bankroll by $659. Luckily, it took less than a week. My next goal is to make $665 more. I think it is important to have measurable goals so that you can continually measure your progress. Well, at least I know that it helps me. Anyway, one down, seven to go.

I am continuing to experience the good side of variance. It definitely feels a lot better than the bad side... lol. My true earn rate for the week was a nice 4.97 BB/hr which I will definitely take. The makes it 5.71 BB/hr for the month which will be coming to a premature close. Because of that, I have gone ahead and posted the month to date numbers a little early. These will be the final numbers after one small adjustment on Sunday. The short handed games just seem to be chugging along. I may or may not move up a level to 5/10 short handed next month. We'll have to see. Right now, I am just in a comfort zone and may just hang out here for a while. I am obviously enjoying how things are going right now; but at the same time, I miss the higher stakes of 10/20 and 15/30. The blood definitely pumps a little more up there. Anybody have any thoughts on grinding at the low limits vs moving up to a more bankroll appropriate level?

Anyway, as I mentioned, I am going to take a brief poker hiatus. Since Christmas, I have been having pains in my wrist... right wrist to be more specific. I let it go for a few weeks and finally decided to visit the doctor. I wasn't sure if it was carpal tunnel or a sprain or what. As it turns out it is tendonitus which is a pretty common ailment of people that do repetitive type tasks. So coupled with the day job and the night time hobby, my wrist gets a work out. I told the doctor that I spent a good deal of time on the computer at night. A little while later, he asked what it was that I was doing at night. I just happened to have a poker magazine in my hand (Cardplayer) and said I play a little online poker. He says, well, that needs to stop as you need to rest the wrist as only time can cure this. I am taking some anti-inflammatory drugs and hopefully that will do the trick or I will have to get some sort of shot... Cortisone, I believe.

You can guess, my initial reaction... Yeah, right... Maybe, I will lessen the amount that I play which was the plan for January anyway. Of course, things never work out the way you plan and there were a few days this week where I was stuck early and played a good bit to get things back. I can definitely tell that after a little while, my wrist starts to really hurt... and I really pay for it the next morning as that seems to be the major time that I get pain.

So fast forward to now and I am actually going to follow the doctors orders. The plan is to take a week long poker vacation. I am certainly happy with the January numbers so there is no need to try and improve upon them. It was my 3rd best month. I'll take it.

I have some thoughts of what next month will bring and want to look deeper into the numbers of rakeback vs bonus chasing.... so I may throw a blog entry in there; but I wouldn't be surprised if I stayed away from posting blogs for a week as well.

That should do it for now.... Have a good week!!


Thursday, January 26, 2006

Who's Reading

Same old thing last night... albeit a bit of struggle as I was hovering around even (plus or minus $25) most of the time. I luckily hit a nut flush in a repeatedly raised pot that helped. I hit the flush on the river, by the way. Some times, it just feels like justice when I river some people. I've been really paying attention to this lately as it eases the pain of when I get rivered.. You know, what goes around, comes around. I realize that I will get rivered more often because if I making it the river, I usually have the goods; but if I pay particular attention to when I do it to other people, it helps. I'm trying to get away from that "selective" memory which can tilt the best of players. Anyway, I ended up the night $109.

Since I played before and after 11PM Central, I have already amassed my 50 needed points for the Full Tilt Iron Man thing so I probably will be taking the night off... at least the early part so that I can spend some time with Mrs Wonka. Playing everyday for this Full Tilt thing is starting to wear on her patience.... understandably so.

So... something, I've always been curious about is the general playing level of the faithful Poker with WillWonka readers. Couple that with my urge to use a poll (ala Poker4Peace), I am going to try my first poll which requests playing levels. Basically, the question requests what type of games you are playing and at what levels. Please note that No Limit and Pot Limit are technically combined as one choice.

Note: Put mouse on Title to see full question and put mouse in the scroll section to see more options. Thanks.

Create polls and vote for free.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Easy way for Iron Man Status

I'm continuing to grind away at the Full Tilt Iron Man thing. I saw something pretty amusing on Matt Matros's site regarding the Iron Man Challenge. I, of course, grind away a multiple 3/6 SH tables to get my 50 points a day. While this doesn't really take that long... about 15-20 minutes, Matt says that he finds it easiest just to play a $500 Heads Up match everyday. Wow, why didn't I think about that... That does seem easy.. Oh wait.. you actually have to put up the $500 to play in a $500 HU SNG. Oh well, so much for that. I do have $500 on FT; but obviously am not comfortable play that because...well... people like MM are playing those. I guess I will continue my grind. I also found out that they will be giving out T-shirts for those who achieve "Iron Man" status so at least I have that going for me.

Speaking of the grind... I was playing Monday and at the point I got my 50 points, I was down close to $100. Side note.... The theme of the month was just to play the 50 points and if I was ahead, quit... otherwise, play on. I am doing this in hopes that I can make Mrs Wonka a little happier with me playing less poker. Sometimes it has worked and sometimes not... as it was Monday... Anyway, I play on.. and I work it back to where I am up $105. Now $100 is typically my stopping point these days... again to appease Mrs Wonka... but immediately had two big blinds posted to put my at $99... Do I still stop... heck no.... I don't have to tell you what happened next. OK, I'll tell you anyway. I went south..... way south... Before I know it, I am stuck over $300. Do I quit now? Heck no... Do I have to tell you? OK, I will... luckily this time it is good news as I make up the $300 and add a few dollars ($28) to it. Do I quit? OK.. This time I did. Of course, it take me a couple of hours to make that $300 back; but positive is positive.

Tuesday night went better as I was up $60 after the 50 points; but here is the deal... Mrs Wonka is out for the evening... OK, I'll play more. I switched over to Party and deposited some more to get their bonus... 1000 raked hands in a week seems like a lot so I may not get the $100 bonus. We'll see how it goes. Anyway, in total, I ended up the night with a $172 profit. I'll take it.

I also got an email from the Poker Room saying that they had put $25 in my account. Hmm that was nice of them. I am most likely going to treat this is as bonus money and gamble a bit with it via HU matches. I first started at a 1/2 table and said the heck with it. I went to a $10 HU and won it pretty easily. Not by my play; but rather the cards hit me nicely and my oppenent was rather passive. Put those two things together and you get an easy victory. I will continue with these and move up levels at appropriate times.

I am really enjoying watching High Stakes Poker on TV. It defintely puts a new wrinkle into poker playing. It kind of puts things in perspective when Ted Forrest losing a huge chunk of dollars (I think 70K) when losing with set over set. Ouch!!!! Or how about Doyle going all in for half a mill... might have to have the nuts to call that... and still might not call. I have just seen the first one and am looking forward to future episodes.

That should do it for today...

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Ho Hum Weekend

First off, I would like to thank everybody for their nice comments. It is obviously nice to find out that people are actually reading this here thing I call a poker blog. I know I probably missed some folks (most notably the St Louis Bloggers); but I hope to make up for that soon.

Nothing very exciting to report today. The weekends continues to be break even at best... especially Saturday. For the second Saturday in a row, I just couldn't get anything substantial going... The only thing I had going were my pocket pairs. I was hitting sets like they were going out of style. Overall on Saturday, I lost $279. Conversely, my pocket pairs made me $609. I hit quads twices and I also had a straight flush... so I was getting cards; but at the same time everthing else was just not working. 5 of those sets didn't work out... Two of my boats lost.. Two flushes lost out and a str8 lost out. A lot of second best hands can kill you.

Here are the overall stats from the weekend.

Hands: 1,624
VPIP: 33.37
PFR: 16.26
AF: 3.11
W$WSF: 38.12
WSD: 30.94
W$WSD: 47.42
bb/hr: -1.73

After Rakeback, it was barely a breakeven weekend. I've cleared the $300 from Full Tilt so I am playing without bonus. It just seems kind of weird playing without it. I guess between Absolute and Full Tilt bonuses, I have become a little spoiled as I now don't feel like playing sites without getting "paid" to play. I've never really considered myself a bonus chaser; but that may change. As I mentioned earlier, I am going to stop putting up daily stats as they really don't bring any value to the blog. I will continue to post monthly stats in the upper right. I usually update those on Sunday nights.... I have updated the stats through tonight. Due to a couple of bad days, I only netted $105 for the week. It was, however, my 8th straight winning week which is a new record for me breaking 7 weeks which I had reached 3 times. It took a winning day on Sunday to do it; but positive is positive. BTW, my weeks go Mon-Sunday as that is how my spreadsheet calculates it.

Sidenote... I just looked on Full Tilt and saw Phil Ivey playing at the 50cent/$1 NL tables. How cool is that? Again, that is what makes Full Tilt a great up and coming site. They are, however, not without problems. They have had some connection problems as of late and they still don't have the traffic yet. As of Sunday Night at 9:00 Central, they have 10,491 people which obviously doesn't compare to the 75,079 of Party or 74,941 of Stars. I'm not sure what it is going to take pull people from those sites. Definitely an uphill battle.

OK, where was I. I did play in the H.O.R.S.E. tourney; but with no luck. It was, however, a whole lot of fun. I hope we have another one soon.

I've never jotted down in really goals for 2006. My one and only goal at the moment is to get back to an all time high in bankroll with is $3,876 away from where I am currently at. I was going to put a timeframe of when I would like to get there; but I won't... Instead, I am going to put some stepping stones (8) of interim goals to reach. Here they are:

  1. Make 659
  2. Make 665 more
  3. Make 417 more
  4. Make 178 more
  5. Make 355 more
  6. Make 511 more
  7. Make 632 more
  8. Make 459 more

These stepping stones represent major bankroll amounts for specific dates prior to a big losing streak. Saying that you want to make almsost 4K seems a little more daunting than by breaking it up into 8 steps. It would be nice to make it in 2 months; but we'll see how it goes. It would be nice to set loftier goals; but I'm not sure that I want to do that just yet. To set lofty goals usually means that you mean to step up in limits as you reach particular goals. Right now, I am comfortable where I am at and am comfortable with the winrate from the last month. I will continue to track this and see how it goes.

That should do it for now..

Have a great week!!!!

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Shout Outs

Nothing exciting in the world of poker last night; but I said I would post stats and here they are. I will probably just to continue this for a few more days as I'm not sure if any value is added by posting these. I played for a little over an hour. Here are the numbers:

273 Hands
VPIP: 33.70
PFR: 16.48
AF: 3.45
W$WSF: 38.53
WSD: 30.28
W$SD: 54.55
15 bb/hr

This post is going to concentrate on a couple things that other people have done in the past. Most notably, what do I look for in a poker blog. I have also added some links and will go into more detail below.

First... What do I look for in a poker blog. Below you find a 15 point list on what I perceive as a good poker blog.. NOT!!!!!!!! Two things is all that I ask for.

Post about Poker
Post Regularly

I'm pretty easy to please. I like to read about poker. I'm not really concerned with how much you had to drink last night or who you took a pee next to. I'm interested in poker. I'm not taking anything away from anybody who talks about other stuff.. in fact, more power to you.. That is what blogging is all about. Now, if you mix some other personal stuff in with regular poker posts, that is great. That gives a little extra perspective into you.. the poker player. I realize this definitely puts me in the minority; but so be it.

I also like to see regular posts. There are some great bloggers out there that either don't post very often anymore or have switched to more of a non-poker info type blog. One thing that really gets on my nerves are the people that just continue to go on and on about how great of a poker player they are and how terrible everybody else is. To tell you the truth, I don't really want to hear it. What I would like to hear more of is how you are handling your good and bad swings.. what are you doing differently to try to change things around (if anything). I could go on and on here; but I won't.

Something that I don't do enough of is tell others about great blogs (at least in my humble opinion) that I have come across. So yes, as I have said, I have added some links to the right. I don't do this as often as I should. While I have tons and tons of blogs on my bloglines list, I really try to just put blogs that I read regularly no matter what on my link list. I'm not really into swapping links. If you have a good blog and I read it regularly, I will be more than happy to put it up there; but then again, I will not hesitate to take some off (as I have done today). There are plenty of blogs that will have a giant list of poker bloggers and I urge you to visit them.

OK.. My link list.

Scurvy - simply stated, he has the best poker blog out there (in my humble opinion). Continued posts on strategy and poker thinking/theory are being posted regularly. The fact that he is from Austin doesn't hurt either... Hook 'Em!!!

Low Limit Grinder - Gary continues to put post after post out there on a variety of topics. He is a little hampered due to work constraints; but if you are not reading him, you are missing some really good stuff. He was also one of the first bloggers that I really "hooked" up with (pun intended Mr OU fan) and I have enjoyed talking poker or "stuff" over the past few months with him and others. those others being:

TripJax and HighOnPoker - I also met up with them during my early days durning some Heads Up challenges. They are always posting good stuff and they are not shy to let you know the way they feel.

Poker Nerd, Matt Matros, DoubleAs, Bill Rini and BadBeatBlog are some of the big name bloggers out there.

Nerd says he is quitting the blogging game; but hopefully he will reconsider because his SNG strategy posts are second to none.

Matt M and DoubleAs really belong in the newly added High Rollers section. There is a reason they are High Rollers.. They really know their poker and are willing to share some of that knowledge with us little guys. I, for one, really appreciate it.

Bill.. what can you say about him. The great poker organizer. He posts about poker to the nth degree. He also has something called the PokerFilter which collects post and articles about the whole world of poker and again I am infinitely grateful for him taking the time to do that. Even a few of my posts have made it there. While I don't consider myself a seasoned enough poker player to give advice, I am honored to think that he thinks that they are worthy. In fact, my Worst Best Hand post is still in the top 10 of his most read articles. Again, thank you very much.

Mourn is another guy that just continues to put out good stuff and I eagerly await new posts from him.

The Poker blogging game seems to keep growing and growing and along with that, there are some great new bloggers. Here are a few that I try to read as regularly as possible.

LittleAcornPoker. LittleA posts nearly everyday and it is great to hear about things across the pond. Keep em coming.

Closet Poker Player. CC is a great read not only for his poker content.. which is excellent; but his traveling adventures and reviews of practically everywhere across the world. He provides excellent insight into poker and makes you look at your poker game.

Poker Funds. It seems to me, that this guy just flat out loves poker... all phases of poker. He never ever hesitates to give his opinion on things which can bet pretty hilarious sometimes. Apparently he swings from the Right... but I'm not sure on that one... lol. We Republicans have to stick together.. as it seems that we are the minority in the poker world.

Counting my Outs, O-Poker, Poker4Peace and Poker and Peaking are new blogs that I recently came across. Michael at CMO loves to talk poker strategy and has great thoughts on them. He has very good ideas and comments on hand analysis.

O-Poker has a great 50K goal for 2006 and will be fun watching achieve those goals. Go take a look as he has defined how he wants to get there. Best of luck to you O. Keep getting your money in with the best of it. Everything else will take care of itself over time.

Poker4Peace also has some great posts and he also add poll questions. I really enjoy seeing the results and hope to start incorporating some of them myself.

PAP is one that I just recently found and also posts regular, good stuff. I'm looking to reading more stuff from you.

OK.. That was just a glimpse of some the blogs I read and why. Remember, my criteria is pretty simple.. Post about Poker and do it regularly.


Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Hee Haw

That's right, I'm a donkey and I admit it. Admission is always the first step. But seriously folks, if you don't have a little donkey in you, you aren't getting the biggest bang for your buck.

Yes, you can continue to play your tight / aggressive play and you will probably be a winner; but it is my humble opinion that you need show donkey tendencies. What do I mean? If you continue to play tight aggressive, you might lose quite a few bets over the long run because people will assume that you have the goods and quit calling you down. Of course, this is not always the case, as many folks will do just that.

I played quite a bit again last night as the trend continued where I was stuck a bit after completing my necessary 50 points to qualify for the Iron Man 10K freeroll. I won't bore you with too many details; but here are the stats from last night:

Hands: 1732
VPIP: 31.76
PFR: 15.24
AF: 3.06
W$WSF: 39.26
WSD: 29.97
W$SD: 50.27
bb/hr: -.14

So as you can see, I was pretty much break even.. a little ahead with bonus. I found myself down almost $300 and for whatever reason opened up an 8/16 SH game. This is something that I have fought off recently because I really do get more enjoyment level at the lower limits. It can be hard to handle the swings of higher limits.

Anyway, I continued to struggle on 3/6 and 8/16 wasn't helping although in my first couple orbits at 8/16, I had AK, AKs and QQ... all of which lost. Ouch!!. I finally got back to positive territory ($70) in 3/6 land and was getting ready to shut those tables down and concentrate on 8/16; but something happened and I didn't. Dang.... $300 later, I'm down at 3/6 again. As we already know, I came back to even (from over $700 down) so the story more or less has a happy ending.

I do want to share one hand with you that I think has great poker theory to it. I'll be the first to tell you that I'm not a mathie at the poker table even though I do understand the concept. I just don't go through the motions to figure exact odds and pot odds. Ballpark works for me and in this hand I used the ballpark theory. This also goes to my donkey perception noted above.

I'm at a full 3/6 SH table. I am UTG+1 with JTd. We already have 2 big blinds and 1 small blind as we have a new poster. UTG folds and I call. CO checks (poster) and button raises (I'll let you know now that he has AA). Both blinds call. Back to me. What do I do... Re-Raise (thanks Scurvy for putting this move in my aresonal). CO calls and button caps and everybody calls. 5 players wow.. just what the doctor orderd..

Flop As7sKc. OK not great; but at least a gut shot. BB bets out and I call and AA guy raises. 3 callers.. 4 players now.

Turn 5d. Dang... Everbody checks to AA who of course bets his set and scares nobody as we all call.

River Qh. Hallelujah!!!! Obviously, I'm betting out... only AA stays with me and the bets get capped and I rake a huge pot (25.5 BB)

Now before we look a little deeper into this hand, this put AA guy in a new form of tilt that I haven't seen recently. He lambasted me... I, of course, was very kind and courteous. He would say something like you called a capped preflop with JT... and I would say.. "Is that what I did?".. He says.. yep... I go.. "Is that bad?"... he goes ballistic... I go... "what did I do again"... he continues on his censored disortation... At the end.. I just said.. "thanks for the help". It didn't help later that he got his Aces cracked again... He typed in his thoughts and left.

Too bad... because a few minutes later, I got my Aces cracked. He would have enjoyed that. Oh well. Back to the hand.

What are your thoughts? Although, I didn't go through this exact analysis during the hand, I still had a good idea where I stood. Here are my thoughts.

Hand in review…

JTs is obviously a good hand to try and limp in with (even from early position when playing short handed) in my opinion. Next guy raises; but then shockingly 2 people cold call. Now, of course, I’m on drawing hand so I want as much money in the pot as possible so I bump it back and it gets capped and again 3 guys cold call 2 more bets.. so.. $60 (10BB) in the pot preflop.

Flop gives me nothing but a gut shot. An EP bet makes it 10.5BB. I am getting 21-1 on a 8-1 shot so it is pretty easy; but if I assume that others are calling, it makes it even better. Original raiser raises it so by the time it gets back to me, the pot is $78 (13BB). It’s definitely worth a call here as I am now getting 26-1 odds now. Still the cold callers are staying in. $84 in pot (14BB).

Turn brings nothing and we all check to the raiser who of course bets… $96 in pot when it comes to me giving me 16-1 in which I am about 10-1 to hit so I am OK with this call especially with the cold callers coming along (actually pretty easy call).. If a Q comes great, if not, I bail… I only need this to work about 10% of the time to be profitable (probably less than that).

Of course the Q comes and the rest is history. I sure would like to know what the cold callers had that made them bail on the river. I'm sure we had some flush draws and maybe another pocket pair... AK maybe... who knows.

Any thoughts? In reality, I did get really, really lucky; but I have no regrets. Capping the preflop was instrumental in dictating the future odds to hit my gutshot. Of course, this gave me a very donkeyish persona which I am glad to take.

If you ain't switching gears (especially in short handed play), you ain't winning as much as you could be.

I also played in a H.O.R.S.E. tournmanet last night for the first time. It was a lot of fun. Unfortunately, I went out early when my nut straight in Omaha hi/lo was cracked when the board paired giving the villian a boat... Such is life. Hopefully I will be able to play in Friday's tourney.

I won't be playing any tonight. I already got my points from Full Tilt as I played to the wee hours of the night (3:30AM).

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Disturbing Trend

Has anybody else noticed the disturbing trend that is going on in NFL Football officiating or for that matter officiating period. In my humble opinion, at least 3 of the games (I did not get to see the Seattle game) had huge, impactful decisions that were incorrectly made... sometimes even with the aid of instant replay.

#1.. NE vs Denver. First off, I do not want to take away anything from Denver. I believe they played a good game and made plays when they had to; but it is my opinion that NE lost the game as opposed to Denver winning it. Denver was given a touchdown (more or less) by the referees when they called pass interference around the 5 yard line. Again, in my humble opinion, that play was not even close to pass interference. So given that huge miscall that led to a touchdown plus the many, many turnover mistakes by NE, Denver will be hosting a game against the Steelers. Which brings us to......

#2.. Pitt vs Indy. There are almost too many mistakes to call here. Conversely, to the above game, Randel El was grossly interfered with early on with no call. I believe I should also mention that I will be saying all of this with a definite prejudice against the Steelers (sorry Josh). As a Cowboys fan, you just can't like the Steelers. Enough said. The biggest miscall was when they didn't give them an interception later in the game. I don't care about having both knees off of the ground before you "gain" possession. That is ludicrous. He caught that ball clean and it should have been an interception. I'm not sure what replay they were watching. They also missed a blatant false start against the Colts that had a big gainer to Harrison. I just don't get it. They do, however, love to call the illegal contacts against the DBs.

What a finish though... I'm not sure why they didn't just take a knee at the end of the game. I realize that there were some timeouts left... but for crying out loud... don't fumble it. I also realize that the Bus doesn't cough it up very often. I guess it worked out.. Nice game saving tackle by Ben.. and how does Vandy miss that FG by 2 miles.. I think it was just justice calling.

#3 and finally, Bears vs Carolina. Again, numerous big mistakes. I believe that Carolina should of had a defensive touchdown. Yes, Gage's knee touched the ground when he made the catch; but there was no contact while the knee was down. Again, they even used replay. If I can see it, then they should see it. Maybe the most obvious error was not calling delay of game towards the end of the game. It obviously worked out for Carolina because Grossman through an interception.. but how do you miss that? I wonder if that is challengable? It should be.

So with the exception of possibly NE, the bad referee calls didn't change how the game eventually ended up; but PA-LEASE!!! Get the calls right...

Uhhh Poker.. oh yeah..

I have updated my stats for the month at the right. So far so good. As far as this weekend goes, the trend continued. I banked a good day Friday but gave it back over the weekend so the trend of losing money on Saturday and Sunday continues. Technically, with a bonus from Full Tilt, I made a whopping $12 on Sunday. Also technically, if want to consider rakeback, then Fri-Sun was profitable; albeit barely. Saturday, I just couldn't get it going. I played over 2,100 hands and finally ended up down $275. At one point, I was over $600 down; but once I got it back to under $300, I just called it a night. I still had a football game and a basketball game to watch on my DVR.

I also played in our small monthly home game tourney. We had more than usual as 11 people showed up. In the first game, I ended up in the top 5, I believe. The hand that took me out was fairly interesting. I was getting short so I push from UTG+1 position with TT. Kip behind me takes a while and finally calls. Little did I know at the time is that he was slow playing his Rockets. Doh!!!! and finally The Poker Ace (renamed from just Ace) had his own pocket pair (pkt 8s maybe.. I can't remember); but did not call. That left UTG, Webster. He also had a pkt pair (55) and he thought and finally did call. Low and behold a T came on the flop and I was feeling good. Well, at least until the River when Kip dealt himself an Ace.. IGHN. Unfortunately, Kip went card dead and couldn't put my chips to good use. Cards or no cards.. at some point you just have to push and hopefully pick up the blinds are just get lucky why you still a have a decent stack. That would be my one suggestion to him. Poker Ace, as usual, just continued to get the cards or the flops and notched a well deserved victory.

The second game only 5 or 6 of us played as the others proceeded to play our typically "wild" side games. I was just in the mood for Holdem so I opted for another tourney. This second game I made it Heads up with none other than the Poker Ace. First hands of Heads up, I am dealt the powerful 52o. I can't remember who had the button.. I believe PA did. Anyway, he just called and I checked to see a flop of 882. I bet out a little over half pot and he raised (as he is prone to do). I was putting on over cards and I went all in. He turned over Q8 and IGHN. Nice going "Poker Ace". That 2nd place finish at least made me break even for the night. It still wasn't too late; but I opted to hit the highway.

There you have it and there you are... Have a good week!!!!

Friday, January 13, 2006

Post Play Routine

For the third night in a row, I was down after completing my 50 pts for the Full Tilt Iron Man challenge. They are running a second chance kind of thing if you can get 100 pts for 15 straight days. I'm not sure if I like this because it decreases the overlay for the 10K freeroll. Oh well, what can you do..

Anyway, I ended up the night playing 288 hands and making $131.

Something I'm going to do for the rest of the month is post the major PT stats. So please feel free to critique my play. Of course I reserve the right to change my mind if it doesn't go the way I plan. Here they are:

Hands: 288
VPIP: 34.38
W$WSF: 38.89
WSD: 32.41
W$SD: 37.14
PFR: 20.14
AF: 5.43
BB/100: 6.42
BB/hr: 13.88 (accounts for mult-tabling)

Those are the major ones. My take away from yesterday is that I was getting good starting cards; but was not hitting the flops very hard and if I did it was second best a lot. So, how did I come up with that conclusion?

My VPIP wasn't real high nor was it real low; but the preflop raises were over 20% which means I either had really good hands or was a really passive table. The former applies here. The fact that that I went to showdown only 32% and winning only 37% of the ones that I did go to showdown tells me that I wasn't hitting the flops very well.

The good news is that you don't always have to hit the flops hard to wage a positive session. As you can see, 13.88 BB/hr (at least to me) is considered a good session. My sessions are a little abbreviated these days due to me taking a quasi break and just trying for the 50 pts; but that is OK. You can still take away trends from your play; especially when you start combining some days.

So how can you have a good session when not hitting the flops. Again, and it bears repeating again.... Aggression. Typically these days, I am winning about 14% of the pots without a showdown (which is over double to what it used to be). I would suspect that number is even higher from yesterday. In fact, it was. I won a little over 18% of the post without a showdown. Also, my aggression factor was really high (5.43). It all go backs to that "selective aggression" thing. Aggression good... Passive... bad...

So that is one stat that I always check after a session. Another standard thing I check (except for the normal stats above) is looking at how many hands that I cold called (just called 2 bets) . After that I look at the hands that I went to showdown and lost with. If need be, I replay the hand looking for mistakes or at least trying to understand why I did it.

This review only takes a few minutes and I am very adamant about checking these things after a session.

My question to the masses is what kind of things do you do post session or pre session. Do they help and how do they help? Some people feel table selection is very important.. I'm not really in that camp; but let me know how it has helped you if you do that. Things like that are the things I'm interested in.

OK, there you have it and there you are.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Stats and more Stats

So being the geeky accountant that I am, I started looking over my poker spreadsheet. Let's take a look at some of the things that I found.

But first I want to give out Congrats to St Louis's own Jestocost for winning the latest DADI event, the Special Omalympics.. He put on a clinic of big stack aggression. Good going.

Next, last night, I again played at Full Tilt and again was down over $100 when I hit my 50 pts so I obviously can't quit while I'm down... lol... Anyway, things went good from there and I ended up playing 168 hands (45 minutes) and was up $164.50 (35.76 bb/hr). So as you can see, things are still going very well and I'm going to enjoy it while I can. So for the month of January, here is how things look:

- 1572 hands (I played all 11 days)
- VPIP 33.12 (again this is short handed so I expect it to be a little higher)
- W$WSF (Won $ when seeing flop) 47.36 (nice)
- WSD (Went to Showdown) 34.75 (maybe a little low.. but still OK)
- W$SD (Won $ at Showdown) 60.78 (very nice... can you say positive variance)
- bb/100 12.59 (22.75bb/hr if you account for multi-tabling)
- AF (Aggression Factor) 3.77 w/o flop 2.09 w/ flop (maybe a little high.. but selective aggession is the key)
-W$NSD (Won $ with no Showdown) 14.25% (I love to look at this stat to see if my aggression is working... this is about where I like to see it)
- CC% (Cold %) 0% - ahhhh booteeful

So things are going goot!!!

Let's talk streaks.. I have played 490 days in my poker career. Here is a look at the breakdown of winning and losing streaks by number of days. This will not include the current 11 day winning streak that I am now on.


Total Winning Days: 333
Total Losing Days: 146

Gotta like the over 2 - 1 ratio.

Then I started looking at the individual poker sites that I have played and how I have done at each. Without going into too much detail which would probably bore you to tears, I have played at 16 different poker sites. I am 50/50 on which sites that have actually been profitable. Surprisingly, Party is the site that I have lost the most money (over 3K); but now that I think about it, this is soley due to my bad run in November (nearly 4K).

My profitable sites have been: (in order of profit)

Empire Poker ($5,869)... Ok this was really party during the day. Truthfully, my Party skins profit is only $521 which includes Empire, Party and PokerNow.
Poker World ($5,772).. Very Small Poker site that I hit a couple of big tournies early.
Absolute ($4,401).. Numbers don't lie... I need to play there more.

The rest are under 1K in winnings and are:
Full Tilt
Platinum Poker
Royal Vegas
Poker Stars

My losing sites are (in no particular order):

Pacific Poker
Ultimate Bet
Poker Room
Caribbean Sun
Poker Rewards

None of these are significant.

Are you on stat overload yet... How about some more...

Tuesday continues to be my best day to play while the weekends are the worst. All Weekdays are positive and both Saturday and Sunday are negative.

I have had 26 days of where I have lost more than $500 in a day and only 7 days where I have won more than $500. Ouch!!!

OK, OK.. enough already...

Have a good day!!!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Full Tilt Rocks!!!

This is my first attempt at putting a picture in my blog so who knows how it is going to turn out. This post is just to confirm what a lot of people already know... Full Tilt Rocks!!! The other day, I received an email saying that I met my requirements for the bonus and you can now claim your reward. I'm not sure what bonus that I was doing (other than a reload bonus which this wasn' part of that); but I got to choose between $50 or an assortment of Full Tilt gear. While it would cool to have some full Tilt gear, I opted for the $50 cash. No hand requirements.. just cold hard cash. Well done, Full Tilt... Well Done..

Then last night, I was doing my 50 pt 3/6 shorthanded thing and who is at my table? None other than Full Tilt pro Erick Lindgren. He was actually playing 8 tables.. wow.. He even commented on how he forgot what it was like to play so many tables. Anyway, onto the picture above which doesn't actually show the hand... Anyway, I am in the BB with Q8s and Erick is in the cutoff. One caller before him and he wakes up with AA and raises it... Of course I call from the BB with Q8s and the flop comes 788.. The rest anybody can play.. I check called... check raised.. bet.. and took down the pot and cracked Erick Lindgren's aces... He was even nice enough to say "gh wonka" as seen above. How cool is that? I do have to admit that I had my aces cracked earlier at a different table so it definitely goes both ways.

To put it mildly, Full Tilt has their act together. They are still a little lacking in traffic. As of 9:11PM Central time, there are only 12,146 people logged on as compared to 81,600 on Stars and 74,000 on Party; but if they continue to do what they do from a customer service level, they will soon be right up there with the big shots. The fact that a big time pro would take the time to play a little 3/6 SH is truly awesome!!!!

As far as my poker playing.. Things still seem to be going good... I am now on a 10 day winning streak. Is it possilbe to re-break my winning streak record of 12 that I just set last month? How long is a winning streak sustainable? I have now had 10 straight as I said and 30 of 33 positive days. Out of 125 sessions (tables), I have ended up with a 68% winning rate. I am now over $1,000 for the month. I realize that writing all this down probably means that the winning streak is over; but what is a poker blog to do... or at least this poker blogger. I feel I have been brutally honest whether it be good results or bad results and that is really one of my goals for this blog. It is to journal my poker journey.. the ups and downs.. the highs and lows.. OK, I think you get the picture..

I'm continuing to not really play that much each day. I played a little more tonight (230 hands... 1 hour 10 minutes) due to me being down $100 after getting my 50 pts and also the fact that Erick Lindgren was playing at one of my tables. I ended up $121 to the positive which is just fine by me. By the way, I played 32 hands with EL.. and he finished up down $10.50.. Oh no, what is he going to do... hopefully he did better on the other low limit tables... lol.

Anyway, I just want to reiterate that Full Tilt Rocks!!! I encourage everybody to give them a try.

That should do it for today.

The many faces of Tilt

I don't know how this post is going to turn out; but most likely it will end up pretty lame. I'll give it a shot anyway.

A rarity has happened to me over the past couple of weeks. I have actually seen 3 movies in a row that I have thoroughly enjoyed. I was going to make this a non-poker post; but the more that I thought about it, the more I figured I could relate it to poker. Because when you get down to it, can't you relate everything back to poker?... lol

OK.. Here it goes. If you haven't seen the movies that I describe then you may want to pass by it as I may ruin some parts of it... maybe not, though..

1. Taking a shot and losing tilt. The movie that I saw about a week ago relating to this topic is Cinderella Man. Also, I should say that I'm on the Netflix plan of watching movies so I will be way behind the crowd as far as actually seeing movies. This movie came out way back in May of 2005 so as you can see, I am typically 6 to 7 months behind normal people. That's what having a kid will do to you... not that I'm complaining. I wouldn't have it any other way.

At some point in your poker musings, you are going to want to take it to the next level. Whether or not your bankroll can handle this shot is beyond the scope of this post; but obviously should be considered before you take your shot. In the movie Jim Braddock (Russell Crowe) got a title shot for the heavyweight championship. The bad news for him is that he didn't make it and with other circumstances (i.e. the Depression), things went very badly for him after that. It seems to me that he 1 of 2 choices. Feel sorry for himself or keep his integrity and work ethic and move on and all the while still keeping the dream alive of moving back up. Well, he choose the latter and ended up making it back to the top with his integrity in tact. Nice!!!!

A few months ago, I was at that point where I was ready to move up some levels. For me, moving up was moving to 15/30. Well, as I have chronicled in detail in the past, I failed miserably. So, to me, I had three choices. I could pack it in and quit, continue playing at the level trying to "catch up" and not play smartly, or take some humble pie and move back down. I so wanted to keep playing and prove that I could and should be here playing at this level; but ultimately I decided to move back down and reload... all the while not giving up on the hope to get back up to that level. Things, so far, have worked out nicely. I'm not back to the point where I was; but I am getting closer.

2. Incomplete Information Tilt. The movie I saw here was Upside of Anger. This was a movie that starts out with a lady (Joan Allen) going through the trials and tribulations of someone whose spouse has just left them and the unbelievable anger that builds because of that. She went through a period of years being a total pain to everybody including her family. She became a drunk and pretty much gave up. Well, the thing here is that she didn't have the complete information. As it ended up, her husband didn't leave her, he actually had an accident in their back woods and fell into a well and died. This movie really hit me hard because it is so true how we can mis-construe things and make life awful for people without knowing the whole story.

Now we all know that while playing poker, we are going to experience our down sides. We call it negative variance; but what we may not realize is why the other person is playing the way they are. OK, most likely, they are just an ultra loose lemur (as Scurvy puts it) and really doesn't care about how he/she plays; but is it possible that this person is just playing on tilt himself. Maybe this person has an unbelievable bad run of cards and is pushing the issue to get back some of what he has lost. How about that they actually had the odds to draw out on us. Yes, as unbelievable as it seems, others also play their drawing hands hard when the right odds dictate that they do so. We just have to continue to play our poker which to me is based on decisions, not results.

Playing with stereotypical prejudice. The movie here is Crash which is probably the best movie to me out of the three. Here is the plot outline for this movie from
Several characters of different racial backgrounds collide in one incident, The different stereotypes society has created for those backgrounds affect their judgment, beliefs and actions, This in turn causes problems for each of them.

There are many poker tools out there such as Poker Tracker and PokerAce HUD that help us while playing poker get a "read" on the other players. The glaring problem here is the stats that we have collected is most likely just a very small sample of his actual playing time. We build our reads based on these stats and when it turns out that this 50% was actually a solid player, it can cause you to go on tilt. Maybe he just had an amazing run of cards and that was why he was playing so many hands. Or vise versa.. he has solid stats; but in reality he is an ultra loose aggressive type. We need to be able to adjust to real time playing conditions and not totally rely on our "stereotypical prejudice" that we get from our stats.

Truly, online poker is a melting pot of people. Where else can you get together with people from all across the world and play a game. Given this mix of people, there obviously are going to be different playing styles and we can't let it effect our play.

Most likely, for us commoners, tilt is an unavoidable part of playing poker. Maybe understanding why we go on tilt can help us the next time to avoid it or at least combat it easier next time. Taking a shot and losing isn't the end of the world and shouldn't cause us to play bad poker. Just move on. Don't just assume that the person is a bad player when they draw out on you. Take a look at the big picture and adjust accordingly. And finally, playing with stereotypical prejudice is just plain wrong. Use the information that you have wisely. Just because a person is tight or loose one day doesn't mean they will play the same way the next day. Just be on guard for this and be able to make these real time reads and hopefully it will help you avoid this type of tilt.

Obviously, I just scratched the service on playing with tilt; but these 3 movies, to me, epitomizes some common reasons that I start playing on tilt. Hopefully, I now realize how to combat them and will not get there in the first place.


Sunday, January 08, 2006

Wasted Trip

For the nth time in a row, Mrs Wonka and myself travelled to watch a game and my team lost. This time it was the 10-2 Missouri State Bears played the preseason favorite of the Missouri Valley, Northern Iowa. The game was close until about 5 minutes to go in the game and then UNI ran away with and won by 10 despite being 5 1/2 pt underdogs. I think the last 3 trips to Dallas to watch the Cowboys have all ended in Cowboys losses and now the last 3 trips to see a Bears game have been losses. You would think that I would see the trend here and quit going. At least this is the theory that Mrs Wonka is going with. We'll see.

I still no complaints to how poker is going. I have posted my latest stats over to the right for the first week of January. I am currently on a 8 session (day) winning streak and 28 of 31. No doubt that this is the positive side of variance that happens in poker... Lord knows that I have dealt with the other side of variance. Again, short handed seems to be really working. I actually sat down at a full ring game and didn't do near as well.

Unfortunately, due to me travelling, I didn't get to play in the Absolute Poker 100K. My brother played for me with no luck finishing about 135th out of 450ish. Top 70 paid; but he eventually got blinded/anted out. Unfortunately, he didn't get very many cards. One very interesting had found him plus 3 others going all in... He had QQ and the rest of them had AK. If you can believe it, it finished a split pot as the board had a 5 card straight. Wow, what a let down. That would have quadrupled him up and most likely catapulted him to the money. Oh well, that is the way things go.

The plan is to continue on with Full Tilt and play a limited amount of hands and call it a night. I will not be able to play in the DADI event this week as I have a church group meeting. It's probably a good thing because I don't know the first thing about Omaha.

I am putting together some thoughts on my first month of practically exclusive short handed play and will try to get that out in the next week or so (as long as is it makes some sense). We'll see how that goes.

I am also going to work on my link to other poker sites this week.

See you at the tables this week.

Friday, January 06, 2006


OK.. I'm still on cloud 9 and Vince Young is deserving of a blog title and a second post on him and the game. I won't bore you with any more hype about the game as I'm sure that you have had plenty by now; but out of respect and awe, I titled this post in his honor. Vince.... You are THE MAN!!! Thanks for giving us a great game (along with the rest of the UT team and USC). This one was truly a game for the ages.

Short post today because I really am not playing all that much poker; although things are still running pretty good. I'm continuing to just play for the Ironman Status on Fulltilt. I got my 50 points; but didn't quit this time. Why?

Well, Fulltilt had entered me into a 10K freeroll for getting 150pts I believe. How nice is that. My hats go off to the folks at Fulltilt. Even better was the fact that I didn't personally register and I was about 20 minutes late for the tourney; but I was still in it and just gotten blinded out. Fulltilt is quickly becoming one of the top 3 sites to play at. It seems as PokerStars has taken over the coveted #1 spot and of course that is not hard to believe. They really do things right over there. I, personally, do not play over there very often; but might reconsider after this month. Anyway, back to the tourney... nothing too exciting.. I was down to my last 400 chips when a set of 4s tripled me up.. and things went good for a while getting me well over the average. A couple of missed draws and then the inevitable cracking of my Aces by a flopped two pair (QJ) sent me packing.

So anyway, I ended playing a little over an hour which was 143 hands and made a tidy 19.77 BB/hr ($126.50) so I'm definitely not complaining. Shorthanded play continues to be Godsend for me.

I also received an email from my friends at Absolute Poker. They have given me a free entry into their 100K guaranteed tournament this week. AP has substanitally improved things over the last year and are definitely worth taking a look. Again, they have a 100% deposit bonus (up to $100). You can use Poker Tracker and PA Hud with it so give it a shot a let me know what you think.

Well, that's it for now..

Have a great weekend..

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You


For all you doubters that didn't think Texas would win...... ah never mind... I'll just be sastified with a great victory. This game definitely lived up to the hype. Vince Young proved that he is THE MAN!!!!!! Unfortunately, he has nothing left to prove so I'm sure he will be making a exit stage right out of Austin.

What a full circle of emotions is this game.... It went from happiness when holding USC to 3 and out on first drive (by the way... I love the decision to kick off and get the ball in 2nd half... I don't know why all teams with any kind of defense don't do that) to heartbreak when we fumbled to disappointment when we let them take that fumble and move in for the score. From there, the excitement never stopped. Emotions were high, then low, then high again... stop, rinse and do again....

Other than the obvious points to the game, I thought the game was very poorly officiated. I hate to see that in this big of a game. They missed some calls and some didn't even get reviewed; while at the same time they reviewed some plays that weren't even close. Very disappointing. It's one thing to let the game be decided by the players; but come on. I'm obviously a Texas fan and I admit that Vince's knee was down. I think they missed an interception for Texas. I think they missed some motion penalties... some holding calls (was there even one holding call?)... The good news is that I don't think it was too one sided where one side can overly complain.

I think I was driving Mrs Wonka crazy. It's her on fault... trying to sleep on the couch while this game is going on. I almost wanted to wake up 2 year old baby Wonka so that she could share the experience with me as well... What a great, great feeling.

OK.. some nice guy comments... I am also very, very impressed with Leinert, Bush and White... Wow, all three of those guys (plus their wide receiver whose name escapes me right now) are all studs. That offensive line that only graduates one player.... all I can say is wow..

Uhhh... Poker.... I did get my 50 points in at Full Tilt for $130. Obviously, tonight was all about THE GAME.

OK.. I'm going to try and get some sleep... It may be hard..

HOOK EM HORNS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sports Night

Over the holidays, Mrs Wonka and I were watching some TV and we were finally caught up on all of our prime time shows that we had recorded on our PVR so I decided to pull out something out of my DVD collection. I saw my Sports Night collection and realized I hadn't watched any of this show in a while. We only watched the first two shows but that was enough. Sports Night, in my humble opinion, is the best prime time show of all time. I just can't get enough. It covers the whole gamut of emotions. It is a comedy, drama with great and meaningful stories. Now, there are great dramas and there are great sit-coms; but I don't know of too many that completely hit the mark on both parts. If you haven't watched this show before, it is well worth the purchases and/or rent.

The first one was about dealing with the cards that life has dealt you and making the best of things and remembering what is important in you life (like sharing amazing sports moments with your kids). The second was about dealing with the "man". Don't ever give into the "man". Always go with your instincts on what you feel is right.

When is more, less? That statement will capture my poker playing this month. Kind of a semi-break. Now, remember, I am trying to play 28 straight days to qualify for the FullTilt 10K freeroll. So how can that be less... Pourquoi, you say? Well, you only have to accumulate 50 pts per day which is really less than 50 raked hands as you get one point for every dollar of rake. So once I reach that point and I am positive for the day, I am quitting for the day. So far, I have gone 3 straight days (and made $335)... A long way to go... especially since I am going to be out of town this weekend (going to my alma mater, Missouri State, to watch a Bears basketball game vs the mighty Northern Iowa Panthers). Of course, I will be bringing my laptop so it shouldn't be a problem getting my points in.

I also have bonus to clear at FullTilt. Does anybody else think that it is hard to clear bonus there.. wow.. You clear bonus at .06 per Fulltilt point so it takes a while. Having said that, I will say that the software is very nice and I really have no complaints with FTP. We'll see how it goes. To me, Absolute Poker is still the easiest site to clear bonus and on top of that, they have give reload bonuses practically every week. If you would like to give AP a try, I have a link over there to the right. Let me know what you think.

Well, this humble blog had it's biggest day/readership yesterday thanks, in part, to Scurvy proclaiming that this here blog is the 2nd best new poker blog in 2005. What a surprise that was. When I first started this thing, I didn't know if anybody would read it, much less enjoy it or find anything useful in any way so I am happy, humbled, and astonished that he would say this... especially since I consider his blog to be the best one out there. I always say consider the source when hearing things from people and in this case it is truly an honor to have him post this. If for some reason, you are not checking out his blog, you are really missing something. Thanks again, Mr Scurvy and may our Longhorns kick butt tonight.

Speaking of this blog. Again, I didn't think I would ever have readers or anything important to say and even more so, I didn't think I would ever post any thing remotely related to poker strategy. I am still fairly new to Holdem Poker and didn't really feel qualified to post anything like this; but for some reason I did. Whether or not it helped anybody (besides me) is another question for another day; but anyway I did it. So I have now added a section (over to the right) of my "Notable Posts". Go and check them out and let me know what you think.

Now.. speaking of college football. I am now 0 for 4 in picking (and betting) on bowl games. I'm seriously thinking about going and betting on USC to win so that I can get that one wrong as well and have the Longhorns win... lol.. But seriously folks, I'm hoping for a good game and the good guys come on top. Hook 'Em!!!!!

That's it for today...

Monday, January 02, 2006

Year in Review - 2005

Ok.. no suspense here... no "hold that thought"... no "more on this later".. I'm just going to spit it out.. I'm just going to come right out and say it.. I lost... Pure and simple, I lost.

After enjoying a great first year.. or least part of year in my first year (Mar-Dec) where I brought my bankroll from $60 to $9,600; my 2005 was a down year. The bankroll had a high point of $13,895 in August; but slipped down to $8,571 at the end of the year. So as you can see, I was down a little of $1,000 for the year.

Soo.... having said that.. let's look at some of the highlights and lo-lights..

First... some more stats...

I had 27 up weeks and 26 down weeks.
Jan-Jul I was up $3400... August thru Novemeber I was dwon $5700.. December I was up $1400
I had 190 up days... and 81 down days

Day of the week breakdown (as bleak as it was)

Monday... -736
Tuesday... +2,176
Wednesday... -1,031
Thursday... +1,550
Friday... -12
Saturday... -824
Sunday... -2,148

So there you have it and there you are....

Boy, doesn't matter how you break it down.. just not a very good year.

The first part of the year found me continuing to play limit poker. I was exclusively at the 5/10 level and not really doing that well.. Call me stubborn; but I was bound and determined to figure this ring game thing out. At the same time, I continued to play SNG tournaments mixed in with a few Multis. Basically, the SNGs were keeping me afloat while I was sinking money into ring play.

I started reading blogs (before that.. I didn't even know what a blog was) around March time frame and by the time June rolled around, I decided to ante up and start my own. You can read my first post here. Now, I've never been a journaler.. or writer... In fact.. I stink at both; but blogging was a great way to do both and who knew how fun it would be to not only write a blog; but read other people's blogs. Due to the latter, I was able to meet many people who share the same "addiction" that I do... So... GCox, Tripjax, High, Scurvy.. I want to really thank you for welcoming me into this blog thing.. I would also like to mention a couple of new bloggers that I have really enjoyed (CC and fairguy ). I also discovered some St Louis bloggers which I won't mention here; but will soon have them linked up really soon. I know that I am missing some people; but just letting everybody know how appreciative that I am to be amongst some great people.

So finally, in July when I was about fed up with playing ring play because it had been kicking my butt, I decided to play SNGs and SNGs only. What transpired was 282 SNGS ($50 level) and a profit on of $890. I really found my niche as SNGs seem to be my "specialty". I used to think that these were a waste of time; but obviously think differently now. I also found that SNGs have the same degree of variance that ring games do... Who knew? All together, I made almost $4,000 playing SNGS. So why don't I just play SNGs? Good question... I don't have an answer for that one. I guess the easy answer is that I really enjoy ring play and the fact that it has kicked my butt even makes me more determined to figure it out.

So what does a bad ring player do? Of course... he moves up levels and that is exactly what I did in August. As with 5/10, I enjoyed sucess at it for the first month making over $1,000 playing 15/30.... but then the fit hit the sham and I went it the worst funk of my brief poker career dropping over $8,000.... GULP!!!! Again, it is really hard even just typing that in. I finally came to my senses and dropped back down limits.

So starting in Decmeber, after reading as much as I could on the subject, I started playing short handed. Now, this probably makes just as much sense as jumping levels because as bad as I was at ring play.. shorthanded ring play was a huge weakness of mine; but after a little study, I was able to move into short handed play with confidence. The good news is that I am enjoying some early success as I have totaled over $3,000 since December 6th (which includes bonus and tourneys). Hopefully, this trend will continue into 2006.

So.. there you have and there you are.. There is a brief look into my 2005. So what is in store for me in 2006. While I haven't set any concrete goals, more of the same is probably in order. In the short term, I will playing on Full Tilt as they have an "Ironman" thing going on where if you play 28 straight days during the month, you will be entered into a $10,000 freeroll. You only have to have 50 Full Tilt points a day to qualify. This could be tricky as I will out of town one weekend.. We'll see how it goes (I've got 2 in a row.. so I've got that going for me)... I do have plenty of bonus there to work off so at least I will get that done. Other than that, I will have to put some thought into it and perhaps will post them in the coming days.

Of course, there will probably be a trip down to Okie-Vegas in June to meet some of the above mention clowns.

I hope everybody had a good and safe New Years and here's to success on the virtual felt in 2006.
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