Random thoughts about my interests which include (in no particular order) poker, finance & investing, politics, football and whatever else I happen to see that piques my interest

Friday, November 26, 2010

Here comes that train......

Guilty pleasures are sometimes the best kind. A couple of months back the wife and I are watching TV and Jersey Shore comes on. She flips to it cuz nothing was on and next thing I know we're watching these complete morons whose only claim to fame is that they are so enthralled with themselves they can't see how silly their lives really are. The guys are totally into partying and getting laid, the girls are into partying and getting laid. None of them works or seems to do anything productive with their life except they do try to keep the economy going by consuming every drink in sight. And we keep watching the damned show!! It was like a train wreck. You see the tractor trailer stuck on the tracks. You can't do anything to move it or stop the train and you can't stop watching cuz you know it's gonna be a site to see. And these are the people who get tv shows. Oh if I only had known. I too would have had 18 kids or 6 wives or something. Maybe both. Now that would be a show wouldn't it?

What is it with Americans today that we want to watch shows with the most outlandish, most abnormal people around. I know normal is boring and all but come on. 18 kids and counting. 3 different shows about little people. Kate (no Jon anymore) plus 8. etc. Is this what we're coming to? If so count me out. I got a lot better things to do than watch that. Like live my own life. Personally I think this goes back 25 years or so to Robin Leach and his Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous. I never understood why that was popular. Why do I want to watch someone with more money than sense show me this house that's worth more than I will make in my lifetime? I have nothing in common with them. And when I do hit the lottery, I'll use my own ideas on how to spend money, I don't need to see some fancy place in California to figure out what I want.

And from there we now have Kim Kardashian, Paris Hilton, and the like who's only claim to fame is that they like to party and spend money. Which leads me back to Jersey Shore as these people are just as talent less as the Kardashians, the Hiltons et al without their inheritances. But they sure can act the part. And we stupid Americans all want to watch. Otherwise there would be no need for the People magazines, all the papparazzi, and the looney tunes we see on tv today. And I am as guilty as anyone if I am going to watch Jersey Shore, train wreck that it is. Should I quit? I probably should. My brain is going bad enough as it is without the impetus of Jersey Shore.

Saturday night the wife and I visited Derby Lane again. She wanted to play in the 8 pm tourney and I just wanted to play some Omaha. Got a seat immediately at the Omaha table. And I found out why. Nothing went right for me. Most hands were just crap and the good ones all seemed to flop horribly. I could not make a hand. The best thing I did was avoid playing most of them. It kept me going but didn't get me anything. I was down about $100 before it finally turned. I was hoping it would before the table broke. I was sitting under the gun and open up AA79. Not a great hand for Hi/Lo but they were at least double suited as it was A7 of clubs and A9 of hearts. We were playing 4-8 with a half kill. To explain to the uninitiated, 4-8 means the blinds are $2 and $4 and the bets are $4 preflop and post flop and $8 after the turn and river. The half kill changes the betting level to $6 and $12 after any hand where someone wins an unsplit pot worth more than $60. If you win the hand you have to post the half kill for $6 in the next hand. Kind of an extra blind. Doesn't affect your betting position or anything, just you have to play if you win a moderately big hand by yourself.

Anyway this hand is on a half kill hand and some guy across the table is straddling for $12 before any action occurs. By the time the betting gets to me, it's raised to $18. I thought about raising to $24 and capping the betting but didn't want to advertise a big hand in that situation, especially without a low draw. Anyway the flop is perfect for me, 27J all hearts. Flopped the nut flush. Of course in Omaha, that usually doesn't mean too much as it all can change in the turn of a card. I bet and get 5 callers. Turn is great, the 9 of spades which means we still don't have a valid low and my flush is looking better and better. I bet for $12 and get 2 callers. I am wondering what they are holding, hoping one is drawing to a low and the other has a worse flush than me. I am hoping nobody is sitting with JJ in their hand hoping to pair up. River kills me I think as the 7 of clubs hits pairing the board. I bet out anyway and get one caller. I flip over my flush but then see I'm holding the 7-9 for a full house as well. Other guy mucks, think he had the King high flush, and I scoop the entire pot for about $140 which put me back to even. After that I hit a few more hands though nothing too big and when the table breaks I'm up about 60 bucks. Beats the hell out of being down a hundred.

I then played a little 1-1 no limit. Unremarkable except I managed to flop a gorgeous set on the flop and got flushed on the turn. Lady to my right was a good tight player but a couple of players across the table were complete maniacs who played second or third pair like they had the nuts. Maniac raises to $5 preflop and 4 people call including me and the lady to my right. Flop was 8-5-2 with 2 diamonds. Loved the flop, didn't like the diamonds all that much. Of course the maniac leads out for $4. Both the lady and myself call as well as maniac #2 next to the original bettor. I thought about raising post flop but felt anyone with 2 diamonds will call or reraise all in where as if I wait till the turn and a diamond doesn't hit, I can push them off their draw.

Of course the turn is the Jack of diamonds. Maniac 1 bets another 4 bucks and maniac 2 folds. Now I KNOW he doesn't have the flush but probably has a jack. So I'm all set to reraise him good because I know he'll also call a reraise with almost any pair. Unfortunately the lady to my right had other plans. She reraises him to $10. This puts me in a quandary. I feel pretty sure pretty sure she has either a flush or AJ with possibly the Ace of diamonds for the flush redraw. The more I think about it the more I see this as a valid possibility especially since she called a raise with this. But I still see the flush as at least a 50% possibility as well. So I'm stuck. I want to take down the maniac but I got a decent player to my right in this who might have me beat. So I call and the maniac calls too.

The river is a black king. No help unfortunately. I'm wondering how I'm going to play if the lady bets into me. The maniac checks and the lady checks too. I'm now wondering if she's waiting to check raise me or was she surprised I called her raise. I think about pushing in but figure even a low flush will call me so I chicken out and check too. Maniac has an 8, lady shows a queen -3 of diamonds for the flush and I show my 55. I talked to the lady afterward and she was afraid I had the higher flush which was why she didn't push the river. So I didn't lose a ton but it hurt all the same. That's about all that happened for me and when my wife got knocked out of the tourney I picked up to go.

The wife was disappointed she could never get anything going in the tourney and wanted to play in the midnight tourney but didn't have the cash. So I fronted her into the tourney even though I was getting pretty tired. I still had some extra cash from Omaha so I was ok with it. I went back to play 1-1 at a different table since my last seat had been given up. I took an early hit when my AK lost to AJ but kept it together and managed to make a small profit. Had to drink some coffee to keep myself together as I really felt fatigued. The wife went all the way to the final table but got knocked out a little before the money. She was much happier with the way she played however and I was fairly satisfied with how I played as well.

This all happened last weekend as I started this on Sunday and it's now the following Saturday. Sorry about that, busy week with work and such. Really busy. And unlike most of you, I actually had to work on Friday. If the stock market is open, so are we. It was a short day at least since the market closed at 1pm. One guy was recently let go and another left to take a new job so we are a little shorthanded as well. Monday thru Wednesday were very busy but Friday was very quiet. Needed that as I over-indulged a bit on Thanksgiving with the vino. No poker this weekend as both the girl is home and the money went for Xmas shopping this week. The wife was out the door at 4:30am Friday morning with her sisters. She got some good deals but not as good as last year she said.

Well let's post this disjointed ramble. Tomorrow I'll try to write something more coherent. Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving. I did. Stay lucky you nuts.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

My Heroes have not always been Cowboys

Well my football season ended last night most probably. It was a pretty good game, a nice way to finish the season. Unlike the last game, the weather was near perfect. Game time was about 65 degrees and no wind. It was comfortable out there. The game was hard played and mostly clean. We kept a real tight rein on the ticky tack stuff and I think that helped a lot. Near the end of the game I took a pretty good shot to the elbow and side so I'm a little sore today. Good thing the kid who hit me wasn't a little bigger or they'd have had to scrape me up off the field. A couple of umpires seem to get wiped out fairly often. I was never knocked down all year though I did take my share of hits during the year (every umpire does, it's unavoidable where we are positioned) but last night was probably the hardest hit all year.

After the game we went out to a local establishment for some adult beverages. Had a philly cheesesteak and some Stella. The group I worked with was the same guys (and one lady doing the clock) that I worked with the week before. Fun group of guys and do they know how to pick on each other. I know a couple of them pretty well from working with them other times so it was a good time. Most of us went out last week after the game and a couple of them told me to ask the scheduler to put me back with them for this game since they knew their umpire would be out again. I guess I did a pretty fair job with them and they didn't want to take a chance on getting someone else. Fine by me, as I said I really enjoyed working with them and did again last night. Anyway we spent a couple of hours out eating, drinking and laughing it up. An excellent way to close out the season if I don't do any kids games next weekend. I didn't have any this weekend and next weekend will be the youth championship games.

It's been a good season but it does wear on you by the end of the year. A lot of refs get banged up quite a bit during the year, occasionally pretty badly, most of us don't get to the end of the year without aches and pains. The back judge from last night partially tore his meniscus a few weeks ago and by the end of the game last night he was limping pretty good. Last year a head linesman I was working with couldn't get out of the way of a play coming to the sidelines and got run over. Left the game in an ambulance with a broken ankle. Definitely not the way you want your season to end. I've been lucky that way, been hit, cut and bruised a bit, but never anything serious.

Thursday night I went over to Derby Lane to play a little. My wife was playing in a satellite tourney to get an entry to a big tourney down here. Top 3 got entries, 4th got some cash. She went out 7th. She played pretty well but couldn't get a hand to put her over the top. I went to play some 1-1 no limit while she was playing. Not a great night for me. I played pretty well all in all, avoided a lot of problems and laid down a couple of hands at the right time. But lady luck killed me all the same. Worst hand I was on the button and raised to $5 after 3 people limped. One of the blinds called along with all the limpers. I had KK. Flop was magic K88. Big blind checks but then guy across the table bets $4. Guy next to me called. I'm really hoping each one has an 8 and I call while the blind folds. Next card is the killer 8 of spades. God damn. Everybody checks. River is an Ace. Same guy bets 4, guy next to me calls, and I'm weighing my options. Option one is one guy with a pocket pair and another with an Ace or King. Option 2 is an Ace King in one hand and a king in the other. Both seem unlikely though the first is at least possible. Worst possibility is some yahoo called me with an 8 and got extremely lucky. Bingo. I decided to call anyway as the bet was small compared to the pot size. Guy next to me has the 8. I guess he hoped I had KK or AA and would push over the top on the river so he could clean me out. Sorry to deny you lucktard. Calls a 5x raise with 7-8 off suit and makes his 22-1 shot

And thats how the night went. Every good hand getting shot down, no draws hitting, etc. I did well to keep my self out of losing a ton but it never got good. Amazing to me how I never once even flopped a flush draw though I had suited connectors a ton of times and hands like AJ and A10 suited. Even had AK suited once. Never caught shit. The only hand I caught on was the one that should have broken me. Must have pissed off the poker gods that time. Idiot 2 seats to my left said I should have pushed all in after the flop. Of course he is lucking into full houses with 6-3 off and straights with J7 so he must be the poker master. I just ignored him. As bad as it was it was still a good night. I made myself be patient, not push out of position, and picked off a couple of bluffs. Also made a couple of good bluffs because they knew I played the goods. Got the moron to my right to call my top pair all in with second pair and no draw. Unfortunately that still left me behind but it was good to take back some chips at least.

Today I have no real plans. Maybe a little shopping and possibly some more poker but I haven't made any decisions. Wife is coming back from Orlando today. She had the day off Thursday for Veterans Day and then took yesterday off. She took my nieces and a nephew to Universal Studios to go to Harry Potter world and other things. She bought them all (well I bought one) season passes to Universal as an early Christmas gift. They went by and picked up our daughter and all seemed to be enjoying it quite a bit based on the call I had last night and this morning. So maybe I'll go have a little adult fun while they are out and about. And on that note it's time to go cuz I need a shower and some lunch. Stay lucky you nuts.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

That'll be a cold day in hell....

Or at least in Florida. Had to ref a game last night and man it was chillllllllllly out there. First time I've worn long sleeves to do a high school game ..... ever. Of course I don't do playoff games most years and I heard last year's first round games were COLD. Refs wearing gloves, cold weather gear, etc. Not a fun scene for guys whose blood has been warmed by the sun all year. I'm sure you northerners would laugh at temps in the high 40s and 15 mile an hour winds but to us, that's nearly mid winter weather.

Luckily the game wasn't one of those grind it out, 3 yards and a cloud of dust, stand around games. That would have just left us out in the cold. Instead there was a lot of action, big plays, etc. The home team, Seminole, had a chance to go to the playoffs with a victory. That would be the first time in a good number of years for them. Unfortunately they were denied. Gibbs had some close losses early in the year which left them out of the playoff picture. Too bad because later in the year they put it together. And they did again last night. Seminole was a grind it out run the ball on you team all year. But they couldn't stay with Gibbs' speed and that was the end of that. 3 bombs for touchdowns, the last one on a 3rd and 20 play did the trick. Final score was 40-9.

Other than that, not much is going on. Went to pick up the girl at school on Thursday after work. She was feeling homesick and wanted to spend the weekend at home. Only played a little online poker with a bit of success as I won an Omaha tourney and placed ok in a couple of holdem tourneys. Not sure what I will be doing the rest of the weekend except for the kitchen floor once I post this. I do have to ref a couple of youth playoff games on Sunday afternoon/evening. Since it will be after the time change, it will probably be pretty cool again as this cold front should be sticking around a few days. First game is at 5 and second at 6:30. It will be dark completely for the second game and possibly in the first game. Assuming I get through these games ok, this will probably be my last of the season. Maybe another kids game the following weekend and it is possible I'll work a game Friday with the same guys I did last night as their umpire is out for the rest of the season, which is one more week anyway. We'll see. Still it's been a good season and I'm pretty satisfied all in all.

Well the kitchen floor is calling. I'll wrap up this exciting post and get to work. Hope everyone is having an exciting weekend too.