let me hold those chips for you

My writing muscles are rusty but here goes… For the past week I’ve been doing okay. A couple of big ups and downs, but overall I’m still profitable. The day after Thanksgiving I made about $125 in six hours (about 20 BB/100) playing $50 NL. Then the next day I lost most of my profit. Today I salvaged a mediocre day.

· 250 hands of micro stakes ($0.05/$0.10 and $0.10/$0.20) Limit; won 7.98 BB/100 for a whopping profit of $1.18.

· 230 hands of 6-max No Limit and Pot Limit ($5 up to $50); won .31 BB/100 and $68.13.

· What? How’s that? Well, I lost two buy-ins at $10 NL, got mad and moved up to $50 NL (I don’t recommend doing that… most experts suggest dropping down a level, not moving up two after suffering a major loss). There I found another player even more on tilt than I was and literally took him for $85 (161.17 BB/100).

Here are the two most profitable hands…

I had played about 20 minutes with opelastra and had noticed that he was extremely aggressive, so I made a mental note to wait patiently for a good spot to get his stack. In this hand I’m on the button, so my range of raising hands is a lot looser. I decide to reraise him here and hope for a good flop. Bingo! I flop trip sevens and I’m thinking that it’s no way he puts me on a seven. He raises and I pop him back. I’m not even surprised when he calls. On the turn he decides to push and I am absolutely loving this guy.

** Game ID 1057534209 starting – 2006-11-27 17:19:13
** Donetsk [ Hold ’em ] (0.25|0.50 No Limit – Cash Game) Real Money

– 21dec sitting in seat 2 with $49 .50
– opelastra sitting in seat 3 with $75 .54
– TwinFives sitting in seat 4 with $66 .20
– speedchaser sitting in seat 5 with $51 .00 [ Dealer ]
– RJ0204 sitting in seat 6 with $23 .00

RJ0204 posted the small blind – $0.25
21dec posted the big blind – $0.50

** Dealing card to speedchaser:
opelastra raised – $1.00
TwinFives folded
speedchaser raised – $4.00
RJ0204 folded
21dec folded
opelastra called – $4.00

** Dealing the flop:
opelastra bet – $5.50
speedchaser raised – $15.00
opelastra called – $15.00

** Dealing the turn:
opelastra bet – $53.50
speedchaser went all-in – $32.00

** Dealing the river:
speedchaser shows:
opelastra mucks:
speedchaser wins $100.75 from the main pot

By the time I play this next hand, I just don’t give the guy any respect now, he is basically a maniac. Again, I have position on him. So, on the flop I figure I have a good chance of out drawing him with my two overcards. I’m playing No Limit Hold ‘em, he’s just playing No Fold ‘em. (Ha ha ha! Boy, I slay me!)

** Game ID 1057552540 starting – 2006-11-27 17:27:57
** Donetsk [ Hold ’em ] (0.25|0.50 No Limit – Cash Game) Real Money

– 21dec sitting in seat 2 with $39 .16
– opelastra sitting in seat 3 with $41 .17
– TwinFives sitting in seat 4 with $65 .20
– speedchaser sitting in seat 5 with $98 .90 [ Dealer ]
– RJ0204 sitting in seat 6 with $53 .60

RJ0204 posted the small blind – $0.25
21dec posted the big blind – $0.50

** Dealing card to speedchaser:
opelastra called – $0.50
TwinFives folded
speedchaser raised – $2.50
RJ0204 folded
21dec folded
opelastra called – $2.50

** Dealing the flop:
opelastra bet – $0.50
speedchaser raised – $3.50
opelastra called – $3.50

** Dealing the turn:
opelastra bet – $4.50
speedchaser raised – $16.00
opelastra called – $16.00

** Dealing the river:
opelastra checked
speedchaser checked
opelastra shows:
speedchaser shows:
speedchaser wins $42.75 from the main pot

I must say here that I didn’t get too full of myself. I believe more than ever that poker is a game in which the best player is the one who makes the fewest mistakes. On any given day, under the right circumstances, our positions could have been switched. Watching him play I just kept saying to myself, “Man, that’s me.” He was playing too many hands, raising preflop, making big bets attempting to bluff. I say attempting to bluff because according to Ed Miller, “For a bet to be a bluff, there must be some chance that a player with a better hand than yours will fold.” This guy was just building the pot.

By the way, I am still reading Mr. Miller’s book, Getting Started in Hold ‘Em. And so far it is helping me identify and correct some of my biggest leaks. Some of these are playing too many hands, staying in a hand too long, going on tilt, and playing more loosely with a short stack (as in, hell I only got half a buy in left, I’ll just call his raise here and hope to get lucky).

One important idea that I have learned so far is that I need to think more in terms of the number of bets won or loss rather than the amount of money. This helps me get a better idea of my actual performance, especially across different game stakes.

A few parting shots… I just moved most of my money over to BetOnBet, a Prima site that offers rakeback (I went through RakeBrain). So far, so good. The customer service seems decent. I needed help with my deposit and got it immediately using the online chat feature. I still have a bonus to clear at PokerShare, another Prima site but I am wary about them now. The customer service sucks donkey private parts and it took me five days to receive my cashout to NETeller.

Well, good luck all, and I hope you flop the nuts (except, of course, against me).

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