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Up on the Villainous Felt

10 out of 13 games played and lost.....hmmmm.........bummer.

No Limit Holdem, 1 table SNG Turbo 0.02/0.05  and the Heads Ups for $3.50 a pop.

Luckily I started this whole soiree into Poker armed with the best tool I could have chosen....Jared Tendler's 'The Mental Game of Poker'.  Without it I cannot imagine what I would be doing right now with the above information.

Its august 15th today. My bad run happened on the 13th. Lucky 13. Yesterday I used Universal Replayer a free download tool to analyse the games I lost and see what happened. Today I decided it was time to start the blog so that one day, maybe months, years, or decades from now I might look back and laugh at the day I lost 10 out of 13 games... the first time, at least.

I signed onto poker school online probably about 1 month ago. I have played $50 buy ins at occasional friends poker nights for the last 3 years. I have played poker in total about 20 or 30 times in my life. I played roulette a lot once, a long time ago, but that is a whole other story, suffice to say, I understand the difference between gambling and playing. And I know about the emotions that can get involved in both.

I decided to look into the online poker after the last poker night. I realised I actually really enjoyed the game and for once I actually won it. That hadnt happened before. The guy I faced off with who used to be the weakest player amongst us was hammering the pot and we had all noted how amazing his game had become. Somehow I won the last few games, though we split the take as it was getting late. But he seemed jovial and we all wanted to know his secret.

'Poker Stars online' he said, 'I made 400 bucks last week'

Well, I figured if the game goose could suddenly turn into a golden egg layer, then it had to be worth checking out. Besides, winning was a new feeling at poker night for me. I loved getting drunk and seeing my mates, I had never thought winning was an option. So that's what brought me here. To learn how to play.

Started on the play money. started badly. skimmed a couple of the tutorials, got a bit better. The first time I left a game without having to reset my bankroll was a hallelujah ! Then started growing the bank roll. Then thought I had nailed it and it was time to play proper money.

And blow me if that wasnt a wake up call !  forget play money. I guess it is useful for the occasional free test of a method but it is nothing like the money tables, even at the micro stakes.

So I pretty quickly lost half my $100 bank roll playing silly stakes on the ring games. I hated it. I hated the way it played, like boring lurkers people only went in when they had massive cards, and even then it seemed to just drag. Nope, this was tedious, and I was losing money big time. Then I found the SNG games and they made more sense. I stuck with that for about 2 weeks playing probably 10 hands a day if I could find the time. I have some time. I make some time.

Getting my partner used to seeing me playing all-day online poker was another step. I have to say equally important, if not more so than the game itself, is what happens outside the game when you are playing. Again a whole other story, and one I am happy so say, I can now pretty much get away with sitting watching TV with the kids and partner around while I nail a quick SNG turbo. Works for me.

So following the wonderful advice in my newly purchased book from Jared I start to keep an excel tracker listing my plays, how much I won or lost. what the game was, what the date was, how I felt I played, and how I felt I handled it emotionally. And most importantly I started to follow the tutorials like a religious nut. Dave Langolier is a God !!!!!!

So lesson one, drop down to the bottom stakes, do not kid yourself you are any good until you know it.
lesson two. It is really hard to remove old habits, some part of my mind just loves denial. That's not just any 87o, its good enough to beat AA easy. no it isnt. dont play it.
lesson three....tighten the hell up princess.
lesson four....see lesson three and actually try to obey it this time
lesson five.....fold if you have a bad hand with no hope in hell of improving.
lesson six....oops, snake ! go back to lesson one...
and so it goes on......

Feels like you are not making progress, you are seeing your bankroll dwindle away, and every time you lose you feel like throwing it all in, but wake up the next day with some new reason why you might just be able to make it work.

anyway.

I kept track of maybe 50 games and started to see how I was actually improving. My game was now ok. I was winning some and though my $100 bankroll was down to $10 it was pushing up to $14 then back down to 12 then back up to 16 and I was seeing the shape of the long term play starting to manifest in my game.

So I went back to try the ring games.....zzzzzzzoooooommmmmm. kadunk.
that's a nose dive by the way.

I just cant play those suckers. I havent got the patience and start to get too loose, wont fold once I finally get some action, and invariably lose a load of money. So forget it. Stick to what works. and I traipse back to the SNG and recover my confidence a few games before deciding to step up to the Heads-Up tables.

this goes really well. I win some. Then the very morning I wake up thinking;

'By God, mdkb123, you have finally made the grade me boyo, you are going to be a poker star and make enough money to buy yourself that plane ticket and holiday back to see you friends in Blighty who you havent seen in over 5 years'

yup.sure enough, that same morning I played 13 lost 10 and dreams go down the pan.

....[insert lots of swearing here]

no , really, I mean

WHAT THE....  [even more obscenities, and some new ones too] !?!?!?!

Well I'll tell you what the bleepety bleep in the next post.

til then

adios for now, fellow newbie suckers
 

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