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Saturday, February 26, 2005

Big Loss in What Might Be My Last Session at Foxwoods
Let's start with the cold hard facts: I went down to Foxwoods again last night and lost. To the tune of $260 -- my biggest loss in live casino poker yet! 32.5 big bets.

The usual mix of factors account for my loss:

First, I got the coldest cards I've ever gotten in a casino. Oh well, it happens, and I dutifully folded Ace-little offsuit again, again, and again.

Second, I took 3 or 4 very painful river beats. Stuff like a flush that loses when the board pairs on the river, a set that loses to a backdoor river flush, and a flopped boat that the river makes into second-best. If I had taken down 1 or 2 of those pots, my loss wouldn't have been so big. But dwelling on them would be loser talk, and I don't want to indulge in that. The river was very unkind to me last night, but that is poker.

Third, finally, and most importantly, I grossly misplayed at least 2 hands. (Possibly because tilt set in from the cold cards and river beats, even though I was really trying to to guard against that.) One I really kicked myself over -- in the interest of exorcising this demon, here it is: I have QKo on the button. 5 or 6 people limp and, for whatever tilty reason, I do not raise. The blinds limp and check. Flop is QKT rainbow. BB bets, one player bets, 3 or 4 call, and I decide not to raise. My thinking was something like "well, AJ and J9 have me beat, but more likely, anyone with a J or A is staying in on a broadway draw. I will wait and raise on the turn provided we get a blank, and that will protect my hand better than raising now will." Way to out-think myself. The turn is another ten. Shit. The BB bets. Double shit. I call him down like a good fish, he has T7o. I could have given him 2 different chances to fold but I didn't, and then I pay him off when it's pretty clear I'm beat. Wow, what an awful, awful hand.

So much for how the loss came to be. The question now is what I'm going to do about it, and unfortunately the answer may be "nothing." Last night's loss puts me well into the red at Foxwoods. What I really want to do is head back there right now. But I can't tell if that's a commendable sort of tenacity talking, or if I'm just on tilt.

The thing is, I really don't want the statement "I can't beat the Foxwoods $4/$8 game" to be true. I really, really don't. But that's what my results show.

"Don't be results-oriented!" says tenacious JD, "There's only one way to change those results!"

However, a big development in the House of Cheap Thrills makes it possible, even likely, that that was my last Foxwoods session. B and I are moving this summer. We are not quite sure where to yet, and frankly, I'd like to save the details of it for a happier, "big announcement" post. Briefly, B is a graduate student at Brown, and she is finishing up her PhD thesis. She's been doing the whole job interview thing, and in the next couple weeks, we'll be making a decision on where we're going to end up. It's an exciting time for us, but also quite tense!

Anyway, back to poker. Partly because of our impending move, and partly for other reasons, I will be very busy for the next couple months. I'll be out of town for something like 7 of the next 9 weekends. Ugh. And as the weeks go by we'll have to think more and more about moving, which will be expensive. So in addition to lack of time, it'll be difficult to justify heading down to Foxwoods and potentially dropping another couple hundred dollars.

This was very much on my mind last night. After I dropped my first 20 big bets or so, one reason I rebought was that I knew it was unlikely I would return, especially if I did not book a win. Not a good reason for staying, I know, but there it is.

Again, I hate the fact that I have not been able to crush the $4/$8 game at Foxwoods. Foxwoods is hardly on my list of favorite poker rooms, but I do love live casino poker. I've never really posted concrete goals for myself here on Cheap Thrills -- such as "I will grow my bankroll to X amount by this time next year," as some bloggers do. But I have been thinking a lot lately about what my poker goals are, and I've decided that improving my live casino play is more important to me than anything I do online. I certainly enjoy online poker for its own sake, but it is also my way of funding my live casino poker sessions.

Hmmm . . . I fear I am rambling now. To sum up: I lost hard last night, and I am definitely a losing player so far at Foxwoods $4/$8. I like to think that a lot of that is variance and a few big mistakes, and that I can beat that game. But I could be kidding myself, and unfortunately I don't know when or if I'll be taking another shot at it.

Of course, now I'm looking at the title of this post and thinking to myself "No way I want that lousy session to be my last one at Foxwoods." I will try to get into a more clear-headed frame of mind before posting again.

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