Just finished 23rd in a 2,757-player no-limit hold ’em freeroll on Ultimate Bet. W00t!

EDIT: Also, just finished 70th out of 3,589 in a no-limit Omaha freeroll on PokerStars. Fun times.

Good Times in Indiana

Sarah and I went with two mutual friends to an Indiana casino, tonight. The guys played poker while the ladies played $0.02 slots. I did well at poker, while my counterpart lost only a little. The real story, though, was that each of the women won $200, playing $0.02 slots… at the same time. They hit the same payout on adjacent machines, literally within seconds of each other. It was kind of amazing.

The more exciting aspect of my life is, of course, that my wedding is now only seven days away! That is exciting, indeed!

Wild Poker Hand

Last night, I played some Hold ‘Em, and went all-in with top pair (kings), holding AK offsuit. The problem was that two other players had AK offsuit, as well! One of them caught a K-high flush on the river, and the other caught the A-high flush on the river. Ouch. Of course, the pot was a monster.

Probability of (at least) 3 players in an 8-handed game having AK (suited or unsuited) = .000029% (1 in 3,465, 531 hands).
Probability of (at least) 3 players in an 8-handed game having AK offsuit = .000013% (1 in 7,921,215 hands).

So, that was probably a once-in-a-lifetime hand. Too bad I got busted on it.

Poker Chips

I got the rest of my poker chips, today; all in all, the service was pretty good. I did get a chance to “break in” the table and chips, a bit, and am happy with both.

Okay, back to work

Why I Like Playing a Short Stack

I have played a fair amount of poker, this weekend, since I’ve got little else to do; I resolved to avoid work, this weekend, and I don’t know anybody, nearby, so I might as well play some cards. I had a very good night, on Friday, and again last night (cashed out with 18x and 26x my buy-ins, respectively). Saturday night, however, was not so hot, which reinforced my preference for playing just a bit short-stacked.

Generally, it’s not such a good idea to use the minimum buy-in (10x the big blind) – it’s easy to lose all of it, without playing badly, but it’s hard to catch up to other players at the table. When I have an option, I usually go for about 40-50 big blinds (40-50 BB), which makes me short-stacked, since most players will buy in for the max (usually 100 BB). This accomplishes several things:

  • It forces me to play tight and throw away hands I might be tempted to play, if I had lots of chips
  • It forces me to pay attention to the players, cards, bets, etc.
  • It forces me to play the players and not the cards – if you’re short-stacked and not trying to read your opponents, you’re toast.
  • It means that even a modest win – say, 5 BB – is a big one, given my stack size, which makes me feel like a winner, early, and keeps me from getting in a psychological hole. If I double-up, well, then I’ve caught up to the folks who did the max buy-in… and at their expense.

I don’t always win, playing a short stack, of course, but if I look back at my play over the last few months, I have good nights much more often starting with a modest stack (40-50 BB) than with a big stack (100 BB) or a tiny one (10-25 BB).

Today’s News

Today, I received the poker chips and table top I ordered several days ago. All in all, they are very nice – the table top, in particular, surpassed my expectations. I bought both chips and table top at 5StarDeal. The downside: while I ordered 250 white chips and 200 red, I received 450 white and 0 red. The good news is that they are replacing those chips and refunding me the return shipping cost.

Meanwhile, I got very, very frustrated with Macromedia Dreamweaver; while it claims to support Find/Replace operations with regular expressions, a great many regex features (like the “limsux” operators, most special/control characters, and some others) don’t work, and the matches are not always all found. Hence, I had a client website offline for about an hour – far longer than the planned 5 minutes – while I double-checked and corrected Dreamweaver’s faulty performance. I think I’m going to build a regex-capable find/replace program for Windows, since none of the programs I’ve seen work properly. Who would be interested in such a thing? If you would, or if you know of another program I should look at, please comment!

P.S. This is the dealer button I ordered, but I don’t have it, yet.