Monday, June 29, 2009

Linens n' Things

So, yesterday I attended the wedding of my good friend Harry. I've known his family since I was in nursery school and they're Good People. His new wife Sarah seems awesome, and though normally at G+P we promote strict adherence to the DGM philosophy I'm hopeful that he's chosen well. Congrats again, buddy.

The picture above has the bride and Matt and his lovely wife Jacky pointed out -- she talked him into a fast dance somehow. Matt must have been smoking something as he isn't up for fast dancing for the most part -- nor am I. Harry can certainly cut a rug though, he's got the rhythm.

In other important news, Gin and Tonic might be my new official drink, I had a crapload of them last night and still felt great this morning. Nothing like my foray into vodka+redbull... that wasn't pretty.

As for golf, there wasn't much to say. I played OK and shot 78 and 77 this weekend. Fortunately my handicap is up enough where I'm now getting a shot from Matt which I will certainly press for :). I also played some mostly-drunken Pot Limit Omaha on Saturday night and cleaned up.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Who's The Dead Money Now, Piggy?

I am, evidently. After my last post I have proceeded to run unfathomably bad over the last 2 days online. On Tuesday evening I lost 7 buyins at $50nl while 4-tabling which, I guess, in theory is doable with a bad run in 1k hands. Last night I dropped an additional 5 buyins at 50NL, took a break for 30 minutes to ensure no steam appeared from my ears, moved/sat down at 25NL and proceeded to lose yet another 5 buyins.

You won't see the bad beat stories here, they're typical and not worth re-posting. Yes, I eventually started playing a little tilty but caught it quickly, but for the most part this is legitimately bad luck. Doomswitched or something. It was that damn tournament win, I hate tournaments :P

So, yeah, I'm down just a bit over $700 in 2 days. The micro-bankroll is very seriously injured now. If this continues for another week I will indeed busto my account for the first time in 5 years.

If anyone's looking to make some money, you're ensured to make the nuts against my 2nd nuts at my tables. Not you Matt, you silly bastard, I'll still beat you no matter how bad my cards are.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Climbing Out

This weekend was a quiet one in golf land. Our club had a big member-guest event on which ate the course up Thursday thru Saturday. I had discussed going to play King's Forest with my buddy Dr. K but eventually that plan was nullified so I really had nothing to do on Saturday -- no reason to get up early.

So I did what any poker geek would do with a friday night to burn and no reason to wake up early Saturday, I played cards online. Since my last cashout I moved up into 50NL again and have almost made up the amount of the cashout, which is nice. On this night however nothing went right it seemed, and I played a total of 5 hours of between 3 and 5 tables at a time -- grinding is the word. Whenever I crawled nearly out of my 3 buyin hole i'd fall back in with a beat or a cooler but in the end I finished basically even around 2am. I did however pay over a hundred bucks in rake, of which i'll get back a nice piece -- mcdonald's sort of wages here at G+P folks.

Sunday morning I was feeling good for golf but perhaps was being a bit optimistic, as I actually thought I might start well this time. That didn't happen. I opened 4 over thru 6 with just mundane bullshit bogeys, a couple 3-whacks, the usual sort of thing when I can't pull it together. Then, on #8 I hit my 3rd to 2 feet and made the putt for birdie, #9 i stroked a 3i from 205 to about 15 feet and drained that too. #10 I hit a bad drive, laid up with my 2nd and hit my 3rd to 20 feet behind the pin. I made that one too for a birdie. #11 I hit a beautiful drive but screwed up my 2nd shot leaving it right near the back fringe with a mid-front pin -- NOT an easy putt. I made that one too -- right in the heart. My group members were impressed with my putting to say the least, and as far as I know that 4 birdies in a row streak is my best ever. So I'm back to even on #12 and hit it in the water of course, then take a drop and make the putt for a good bogey. I par #13, bogey #14, bogey #15, bogey #16, par #17 and bogey #18 for 5 over. So, not a HORRIBLE round but should have been a bit better -- the closing holes were garbage.

Matt has a buddy named Casey who became a poker pro a few years ago. I've never actually met the guy but since I hear about his scores in tourneys I sort of follow his progress for fun. He's pretty well known among donkament (that's TOURNAMENT poker) players, not one of the big names but certainly has his share of winnings. Once in a while I'll play a donkament myself but generally I hate them as they take forever and I never cash deep -- but really I've never studied them. Yesterday I finally took down my first 90-man SNG, and once we got down near the bubble it was actually fun. I've realized the overlay of just dead, dead money in low limit tourneys is really something you aren't seeing at cash anymore. NLHE cash games online, at least at Full Tilt are virtual suicide for a bad player now as the ratio of tight aggressive winning players far outnumbers the donkeys. I know, I know most of the players at low limits still stink but at least they have some idea of how to play winning poker now. These aren't the OOOOOOoooHHH PARRTTYY POKER days anymore unfortunately.

Anyway, I might start playing a few more donkaments when I can find a few hours to massacre.

Shouts out to Ryan H., you degenerate gambler you. How could you stay out of action this long? Get your ass on Full Tilt and come play some cards with us.

That's all for now.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

One Bad Bounce

This weekend was an odd one. I guess the week was an odd one given my ace. I re-focused on poker a bit which is good and I felt rather good coming into the weekend for golf.

After a little 9 hole round with Matt after work on Friday (he missed a short putt on the last hole for a tie on a dinner-bet -- it was ugly to watch so I didn't feel great about winning the bet that way but the food was solid). I was like 39 or so, nothing good.

Saturday morning started out weird and got weirder. The front nine I had 2 doubles and 2 X's (did not finish the hole for various reasons) which are counted as doubles for handicap reasons. I had no bogeys otherwise just pars. I then opened the back nine with bogey, double to slide to +11 then played the rest of the round 2 under. At least, I think that's how it went. Shot an 81. Just weird, lots of doubles and X's.

Sunday was the day of the mens tour event. I felt pretty good playing my home course for this one and went to the range to warm up a bit before the tee time. Everything was OK there, but unfortunately I opened +2 thru 2 while getting used to the super crazy awesome greens. Fortunately I held off the bogeys the rest of the front and finished in 38.

The back nine opened well with a birdie on 10 followed by ho-hum par on 11 then a 3-putt bogey on 12 from my tee shot landing in the 'wrong spot'. The very tough 13th tee shot confounded me again and I ended up 205 away in the rough with a view of the green on a downhill lie. I hit a screaming 3i that ended up on the left of the green, made the chip and putt. The 14th I hit it safe and made a nice 2-putt for par. The 15th my 2nd shot approaching the par 5 scooted right behind some trees. I hit a great 9i over a massive tree and onto the green and scooted away with a par.

At this point I was holding +2. That's a fair score but not going to win as far as I was concerned so I wanted a birdie on the 15 or 16th to leave some breathing room on the 17th which is a tough par 3. My tee shot on 16 was left. At first I thought it was in the fescue but I found the ball on the side of the hill in reasonable shape. From 240 I hit a 9 iron down as normal...

wait... wtf... GET DOWN... damn ball was drifting... GET THE HELL DOWN... the ball sailed... it bounced off the hard turf and one-hopped into the creek by the right bridge. I was sort of in shock, thinking I played it perfectly and having this happen. I went down to take a look for the ball and we found it had jumped over to the far bank and was right beside a big group of tulips (I think) in the hazard -- very playable but a gamble since the flower plant would surely stop my club right after hitting the ball. I briefly considered taking it out and dropping to the other side but reminded myself that I was not contending if I go up a shot -- gamble it was. My ball shot out right and into the long fescue on a hill. DAMN. From here I hit the ball into the right bunker, then skulled the ball out of the bunker (my recent bunker habit -- needs to be fixed) over the green. Chipped on and made the putt for 7. That hurts, a double. Now i'm really screwed score wise and my mind has gone away ...

#17 I was sort of in shock on the tee, but made a good swing and pulled the ball mightily -- something I had not done in a long time. I ended up near the 2nd tee above the bunker on this par 3. My pitch shot was supposed to run all the way down the hill blind and roll smoothly onto the green, but got caught near the bottom. I could not get up and down and made my 2nd double in a row, annihilating any hopes for my round i worked for.

I played #18 relatively well, made a chip and putt par to shoot 78. Disappointment wasn't the word. Turns out that +2 score would have tied for the win should I have brought it all the way in, and +3 would have been alone in 2nd. +4 would have tied for 3rd... sigh... T7th it is.

I can't say I played all that badly, but all it took was that sailing 9 iron and one bad bounce to turn wine into water. I hope I can play better in the next events and hold it together. So far the Toastinator has really underperformed in tour events and I'm pretty upset about it.

Sounds like Matt had a similar round and flopped as well, beat me by a stroke though. He therefore stays ahead of me in the overall -- we'll have to try and change that.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Ace In The Hole

Today something happened...

I'll start this post off by talking about poker, since it's been so big a part of my life for so long and had an influence on today. Back in the earliest days of my poker playing I used to drive to Seneca Casino, sometimes with Matty and others, sometimes I was there alone. You should have felt the rush the first time I flopped a set playing 2/4 limit... my adrenaline pumped, my hands shook like jello. It was as high as you can feel without chemical help I imagine. Well, since then I've flopped lots of sets, turned lots of boats, rivered lots of backdoor draws. I'm not saying I don't feel the rush anymore, but it isn't what it used to be.

This weekend at golf was fairly typical. Saturday I shot a very reasonable 76 from the tips with my buddy Dr. K visiting, and Sunday I shot a tough 82 finishing the last 5 holes in crazy windy conditions and the rest wasn't much better. The wind was as tough as I can remember -- I would have been happy with 80 so 82 from the tips was... OK this day. So, nothing much interesting from this weekend.

And then... today happened.

I rarely play golf during the week, it's a mixture of being busy, being lazy, and having my usual golf buddies uninterested in 9 holes after work rounds. My girlfriend Lindsay is a total beginner at the game and has decided to play in a league with her co-workers -- they all stink but they like the game and that's what matters. Today, her other players canceled, all of them. She called me up and asked me to play... I didn't really feel drawn to it as the track is lovingly known as "The Dump", a reclaimed former landfill turned into a city owned golf course -- a municipal golf course. I said yes because I want her to play the game and frankly it's not a bad thing for me to get out of the house, even to play a ridiculously short course like this one. It was actually nicer than I remember it 10 years ago when I last played, but it's no big deal overall and doesn't compare to where I normally play.

I was really just out there goofing around, hitting shots the other hackers thought were good. When i stepped onto the 4th tee -- it, through some random re-routing of the course was actually the 12th hole but it was my 4th. The hole was listed at 162 yards, though it looked longer and probably played slightly longer since he green sits slightly elevated from the tees and the tees were set back of their measured distance.

I drew my 6 iron, took a practice swing and hit a very pretty shot straight at the pin. It bounced once on the green then seemingly hit the flag on a bounce. A guy who left the green just seconds before threw his hands in the air and jumped around. I didn't feel a thing.

I asked my group members "did that just go in?". It must have, since the guy was jumping around. I put my arm in the air to acknowledge the jumping guy and he screamed "It's In".

The guy near the green, who I never did meet, continued to jump around in wild excitement with his arms in the air. I felt nothing -- it was like making a birdie -- no big deal. My group members congratulated me and shook my hand. I felt nothing.

I made my first hole in one today at age 30 on a 162 yard hole on a ridiculous little course. It probably isn't even an official hole in one since the course is only 9 holes right now and we only played as many, but I don't really care.

I must either be in shock still or poker's ups and downs took from me some of the ability to feel joy when something truly great happens. My first hole in one was plucked from the hole with a consummate poker face.

Cliffs Notes:

Popped my hole in one cherry at a hacker golf course, felt nothing