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Sunday, April 02, 2006

'How I Spent My Sunday'

This tale of a socially awkward family moment is brought to you by the fine folks at Noble Poker.


I think I mentioned yesterday that Noble Poker mailed me an invite to a $10k freeroll today. Actually, they ran two of them. 1050 people in each. Biggestron was in, as was I. Thanks to a timely batch of light rain, I got back from the golf course with ten minutes to spare.

About half the runners didn't bother to show up, so I was able to help myself to a fair number of free chips in the first hour. I started at a table with four live people. That number was whittled down to three, then to two. The other live person was pretty passive but had busted the other two players and had taken a nice pot off of me, so he had a nice stack. I did manage to double through him when I had K5o in the BB, he limped with KTo and raise-pushed on the K-high flop. That's a K-5-3 rainbow flop, thank you very much. Donktard. I then got moved.

Early in the second hour, I got exceptionally lucky. I had avoided getting my entire stack in (other than with K5), in large part because I had no cards. Finally, I get KK. The BB makes a teaser re-raise. I push. He has -- DUH! -- AA. Flop A-J-T rainbow. Is that a Q on the turn? Yes it is. Let me write it down, I actually sucked out on someone as a 6 to 1 underdog. A red letter day.

Anyway, I proceed to fritter away a chunk of my stack with JJ against a reraiser. Flop is K-Q-T. I basically have to push if I'm going to continue with the hand. I have a very hard time believing that I beat *anything* at this point and may not have any clean outs at all. I check and fold to villain's push.

It quickly becomes desparation time. Fold, fold, fold. I never get anything worth pushing. We're nearing the money (100 places pay), and I'm laughably short. My M is less than 1. Finally, the bubble breaks. I have T590, with 500/1000 blinds. Hooray!

It's now about 5:45 p.m.


I can't really say how I got involved with this silly game. I don't come from a poker playing family. We never played when I was growing up. There were occasional games with friends or at a church youth overnighter, but that was about it. I don't think anyone else in my family even knows how to play.


The family usually gathers for dinner on Sunday evenings. Since nobody else really has much interest in doing it, I usually end up doing the cooking. Tonight's menu was homemade hamburgers. Nothing fancy, but... I'm supposed to be there by 6:00 to start making them. You can see why the big Sunday afternoon tourneys are out for me.


Now that the bubble had burst (and with my T590, I had less than 1 BB left) and my $12.50 bottom tier prize money secure, it was time to get the tournament over with and get a move on.

I push with A8o. I get a caller, who pushes the blinds out with a big raise. He has AKo. I flop an 8 and win. I push with KQo. A4o calls. I flop a Q and double up again. Are they suckouts when you really don't care much if you win? I push with JJ and get called by 99. I steal a couple blinds by pushing with 55 and such, and suddenly I have T 14,000.


I fold a few hands and it's now 6:00. I'm late. What am I going to do?


I'm almost positive that the only poker I've ever "played" in the presence of my family consists of a home game of extremely short duration played with my dad BG, Bobby B and their dad. Oh, they all know I play a little live poker (thanks to the WPBT outings), but I sure as heck have never played internet poker in their presence.


Now that I have some chips, I want to see if I can move up a notch or two in the payout. I'm not really a threat to win, although I've moved up into the top 20. With Noble's rapidly escalating blind structure, it's much more about luck than skill.

I get changed and throw stuff I need to bring into a bag between hands. I find that I can run across the room and fold in no time flat. Finally, once the blinds pass I send the laptop into hibernation mode, grab it and fly out the door.


Fortunately, my dad only lives a mile or so away. Nice thing about living in a small town. I'm a few minutes late, and everybody is already there. I dump my stuff, plop the laptop on the kitchen counter and spin it up. I find that I've missed some blinds. I have T9000 left (this at the 1000/2000 level).

I also have three pounds of ground beef, which I've dumped in a bowl, along with a couple eggs, some spices and other stuff. I'm mixing it as fast as I can, but not fast enough. I do not have one of those voice-controlled computers.


If I were one of your more interesting bloggers, I would have a report of some kind of humorous adventure when my family was exposed to internet poker for the first time. Instead I got a "what's that?", from my dad, who was otherwise busy making the salad.

Socially awkward moment.

I explained that yes, I am playing internet poker. He seemed to be okay with the idea, at least he didn't voice any kind of objection -- I explained that it was a freeroll and I had a shot at up to $2,500 in FREE money -- but he had a very valid point when he asked how I was going to play with meat mixture all over my hands. Umm, yeah. Small problem there.

Physically awkward moment. Uhh... little help?

I ended up recruiting my sister to click buttons for me -- she knows nothing about poker either -- and the story limps to a close about here. Crap hands come, crap hands get folded. I finally pushed with T3000 or so, folded to me on the button, with 22. The SB came over the top with a weak ace, and one way or another I lost.
Final tally, 47th place, $25 of free Noble Poker money.


So this evening, my collected family learned that I dabble in Internet poker. We'll see if there are reprecussions later. I'm not too concerned, since I can show that I'm up (and not insignificantly) lifetime, and especially since I have virtually no money at risk -- no bankroll -- at the moment. And I gained $12.50 in the process.

The hamburgers got made, dinner was consumed, life went on.

I also learned that I suck at Uno.

The end.


It occurred to me today that I should actually read the internet gambling bills pending in Congress, because I have a question: If they pass, will it still be legal to play online if your bankroll is accumulated via freerolls, affiliate promos and such?

As I understand it, Goodlatte and his merry band of killjoys are looking to shut down online gaming by banning the transfer of funds to online gambling sites -- if that's the case and you don't ever transfer *to* a site (goodbye, bonus chasing), will the act of playing itself be illegal? Will the sites find a way around the legislation by offering their own "instant bankroll" promotions (non-withdrawable, of course) to keep Americans playing?

Huh. Guess I have to do a little reading.


TripJax said...

Great story and an even better point there at the end. Could change the way poker sites offer money to people to play. Interesting.

I think the way you introduced your game to family was spot on...

Royal said...

I was at your table and doubled you up twice. AK and 99. :)

Eventually cashed 4th for $500.