Monday, September 27, 2004

New Post Coming Soon

I actually do have quite a bit to talk about. Just had a great conversation with Iggy about sports among other things.

I apologize for being MIA the past few weeks. My dedication level has waned lately.

I will leave you with this just to get your view from Sunday's Bengals v. Ravens game.

In Good Hands...with Carson Palmer.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

One of the Last Things I'm Worried About

Interesting article on MSNBC about Poker Bots playing online. Honestly, I'm not worried about a Poker Bot. Mainly because the bots wouldn't spend any time at the tables I'm at the majority of the time.

I would imagine others out there have more to say on the issue than I do. I play online enough to build up my bankroll, but I'm not on there every single night grinding away.

This article was humorous about the writers first experience with Party Poker.

Monday, September 13, 2004

My New Favorite Casino Game

Well, I know it has been quite some time since my last post. My life really hasn't been that interesting except for my friend's bachelor party this past weekend, while also driving to Michigan for my wife's cousin's wedding.

For starters, my buddy's bachelor party was another four-day binge (luckily for me, I only had 2 days). Last Thursday night, we partied at the Belterra Casino for a little gambling and golf. The night started off at the craps tables (who now offer 10x odds) but for some reason, the craps gods have not looked down nicely at me the last few times. This was no exception. Within ten minutes, I'm down $50 bucks. Well, let’s go try my hand at blackjack...that always works, right? Usually, but not tonight. I really can't stand when people hit their 12 with the dealer showing a 3 and I couldn't keep track of the number of times that happened. I watched another $5o go by the wayside within minutes.

Since we didn't arrive that early, and I knew we were playing golf in the morning, I didn't take a very large bankroll with me to gamble on. Also, since there aren't any poker tables around, I didn't see much reason. I guess that is my optimism coming out. Ended up hitting the ATM for a little more cash. I never lose when I go to the machine!

Sat down at 3 Card Poker. I hadn't played it before and Let It Ride was already closed down for the night. Figured I would give it a try. The dealer was nice enough to explain it to me and away we went. Basically, there are two bets to play. The "Pairs Plus" bet and the Ante/Play bet. The only way to make any money in the game is to always play the "Pairs Plus" bet. This is also how the casino is profitable at this game. Needless to say, since this was my first time playing, the cards fell my way. Within 20 hands, I was dealt the 9TJ spades. Hit the straight flush! $10 "Pairs Plus" bet on the table and I play the hand hoping for the dealer to qualify with a Q (not that I needed that - no matter what, my "Pairs Plus" bet was going to pay out). She qualifies with an AKx and I'm rewarded handsomely. 40-1 on the PP bet for a straight flush. Another $10 for the ante and $10 for playing the hand. I'm immediately up for the night. $450 in chips in front of me and I get to rake them all. I'm feeling great, that is until my friends decide to buy-in. Hey, this was my game...just me and the dealer.

I pocket those chips to make sure for once, that the alcohol racing through my system doesn't talk me into playing those too. All in all, I'm up $200+ for the night and I've paid for my whole weekend with that. Got to bed very late and woke late for golf. Played a little 5-5-5 on the course with my team and took two of those bets down too. It was good couple days for me.

Next time I'm at any casino, I'm looking for 3 Card Poker. It was fun to play and didn't require very many brain cells. That was an especially good thing for me at that point.

Awoke on Saturday morning (even before the asscrack of dawn) to drive to the in-laws place then to Michigan. Never been to Michigan before and the day of the Michigan-Notre Dame game probably wasn't the best day to drive up. Michigan was very nice (at least the area we were at).

Other than that, I have not been up to too much. I haven't logged any sessions on Party or Pacific since the Monty Memorial Tournament. I finally finished Positively Fifth Street by James McManus. I know what you are thinking..."Didn't you start that book like three or four months ago?" Well, yes. I never proclaimed to be the world's most disciplined reader. I can get started and then put a book down with no problem. It was slow for me to start with. Once he finally started the poker talk, I wasn't able to put it down. I will eventually type up my review on it, but I'm not sure when that will happen. I have picked up another book and I needed to give the brain a break from poker reading. Who's Your Caddy by Rick Reilly is absolutely hilarious. It is actually a welcomed relief from the constant poker reading I've been doing. I'm also looking forward to reading Championship No Limit & Pot Limit Hold 'Em by T.J. Cloutier.

This has been quite longwinded and I'm not sure I wrote anything that anyone would want to ready. With that said, go check out the greatest poker trip report ever written by Iggy. I'm sure that must have been some freaky shit playing poker while Hurricane Ivan was ripping through the country.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Local Poker Article

I know Dayton is roughly 40 minutes north, but "local" enough. Here was an article in the Dayton Daily News today. You have to sign up for it, so I've posted the article below.

Who knew? Professional players agree: Gem City a
hot spot for gamers
By Dan Cox

DAYTON The Wright Brothers
aren't the only thing the Gem City is known for, but you might have to travel to Las Vegas to really appreciate what the Miami Valley has to offer.

"Dayton Ohio, for some reason, has produced some of the best poker players in the world," said Mike Sexton, the host of the World Poker Tour on the Bravo channel.

Sexton, who grew up in Kettering and graduated from Fairmont East in 1965, started playing poker professionally in North Carolina and later moved to Las Vegas when he felt more comfortable with his skills.

"I always figured if I went broke, I'd get another job," Sexton said. "Turns out I haven't gotten a paycheck in over 20 years."

David "Chip" Reese, who graduated from Centerville High School in 1969, is a professional poker player who has played on the World Poker Tour, and he also believes Dayton has a strong poker reputation.

"What Dayton was a hot spot for was the most skillful game in poker, seven-card stud," Reese said. More betting and decision making are involved with seven-card stud than in any other type of poker, according to Reese.

"Any game where there's more decisions to make is a more skillful game," Reese said. "If someone can master seven-card stud, then they can master any poker game."

Reese is one of the only living members of the poker hall of fame and has been voted by other professional poker players as the best all-around player on eight separate occasions.

"(Reese) is the best in the world to me," said Dale Rockwell of Reece's Las Vegas Supplies in Dayton. Rockwell played poker professionally for 10 years before settling in Dayton. He organizes charity poker tournaments around Ohio through the store.

Since poker's recent surge in popularity, rentals for poker tables and chips have risen sharply, Rockwell said. Sales of poker tables have also risen; only 15 tables were sold a year before the poker boom, but now Rockwell sells 15-20 tables a month to people eager to turn their basement into a makeshift casino.

More organizations are contacting Rockwell to hold tournaments than in the past as well.

"We've got so many charities lined up, that we're turning people away," he said. "We're that busy."

The last event Rockwell helped organize was for Springfield Catholic Schools. The tournament lasted eight days and had 3,400 participants. Rockwell said the schools made around $105,000 after expenses.

Players have different theories as to why poker has become so popular. Some believe the free online games that allow novice players to learn about different games without investing any of their own money have taught a lot of people the basics.

But all three men believe the shows on television that allow viewers to see what kind of cards each player has while the game is going has played a huge role in popularizing poker.

"You will become a better poker player by watching the World Poker Tour every week," Sexton said. "It's reality TV at it's finest."

Reese agrees with Sexton that allowing viewers to see the cards of the players has made a huge difference in the way people look at poker.

"If players are bluffing, then viewers get to see what they're going to do," he said.

Along with the greater understanding, fans of poker are learning who the celebrities are in the game, and some players are uncomfortable with their celebrity status.

Reese said in the past he wouldn't tell people about his profession because he was afraid that they would treat him unfairly.

"Now, I don't want to tell them because I feel like such a celebrity," Reese said. "Thanks to TV, it's a sport now. It's not a seedy back-room thing anymore."

Sexton agrees with Reese on how the public views poker.

"It's not considered an evil thing anymore. It's considered a sport," he said. "The public accepts poker as not being a bad thing anymore."