Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wall Street 2010 Dead Pool - Now taking submissions

I am running a "Dead Pool" this coming year and we are now taking submissions. If you're unfamiliar, the concept of a Dead Pool is that you pick a list of famous people and track them throughout the year. Each time one of the people on the list dies, you receive points. You receive additional points if the person is in the younger age brackets. Each participant puts up $30 and the top 3 winners split the prize pool in a 65/25/15 split.

Here are the rules:

1. The Wall Street Dead Pool (WSDP) for 2010 shall run between Midnight, Dec. 31st, 2009 and Midnight Dec. 31st, 2010. Eastern Standard Time will be used as the standard of judging when the year has started and stopped and for any other timing issues.

2. Persons' deaths will be considered to have occurred on the publicized date. If there is a discrepancy between sources, Wikipedia will be the final source considered. As information becomes clearer during the year, the date may be amended. What Wikipedia reports at the end of the contest will be the final source.

3. Each person/team must forward me a list of up to 25 famous people no later than midnight on Dec. 15th, 2009. If one of your list members dies before the start of the contest, you will receive no points and have the option of forwarding me another name to replace that person BEFORE midnight of Dec. 31st, 2009.

4. "Famous" people, eligible for the list, will be defined as:

A. Human
B. Famous enough to have general name recognition
C. Famous enough to have a substantial Wikipedia entry.
D. Famous because of something they've done, not their relation to other people. For example, David Letterman is eligible but his mother, even though she's been on his show, is not. Tom Cruise is eligible. Suri Cruise, despite general name recognition, is not. Paris Hilton is eligible due to her record albums, films, TV shows, etc...
E. People who are famous simply for being old (e.g. the oldest person in the world) are not eligible.

I will be the final judge on what is defined as "Famous". If a submission isn't deemed famous enough to be eligible, the entry will be rejected and the applicant notified in time to give a new submission.

5. People who have artificial organs or have had organ transplants at the start of the contest shall not be eligible. Only the "Major" organs are in consideration here. For example, persons who have had heart transplants are not eligible. Persons who have had heart valve replacements are.

6. People who have terminal diseases at the start of the contest are not eligible.

7. People who are scheduled to be executed at the start of the contest are not eligilble.

8. People who are hostages or abductees at the start of the contest are not eligible.

9. Each person/team must forward to me, no later than midnight on January 15th, 2010, the entrance fee of $30. Acceptable forms of payment are Cash, Check, Paypal.

10. I will do my best to keep up with the news, but if you see that a person on your list has died, it would be appreciated if you could forward me the relevant information so I can update the scoreboards.

1. Each applicant/team will receive 10 points if a person on their list dies in 2010.

2. Additional points will be awarded based on the age of the person at the time of their death as follows:
A. 0 - 9 years old will be awarded an additional 20 points
B. 10 - 24 years old will be awarded an additional 15 points
C. 25 - 39 years old will be awarded an additional 10 points
D. 40 - 54 years old will be awarded an additional 5 points
E. 55 - 64 years old will be awarded an additional 3 points
F. 65+ years old will be awarded no additional points.

3. Additional points will be awarded based on specific categories:

A. The Princess Diana Bonus - 5 additional points will be awarded for anyone who dies in a car accident.
B. The River Phoenix Bonus - 8 additional points will be awarded for the person/team who has the youngest person to die in the contest.
C. The Paul Newman Bonus - 5 additional points will be awarded for the person/team who has the oldest person to die in the contest.
C. The Notorious B.I.G. Bonus - 10 additional points will be awarded for anyone who is murdered by gunfire.
D. The Lizzie Borden Bonus - 10 additional points will be awarded for anyone who is murdered by a bladed weapon.
E. The John Belushi Bonus - 5 additional points will be awarded for anyone who dies from a self-inflicted drug overdose.
F. The Michael Jackson Bonus - 8 additional points will be awarded for anyone who is murdered by a drug overdose.
G. The Kurt Cobain Bonus - 8 additional points will be awarded for anyone who commits suicide. Suicide must be the coroner's final proclamation.
H. The JFK Bonus - 20 additional points will be awarded for anyone who is assassinated for political purposes.
I. The Jack LaLanne Bonus - 50% of the buyin will be refunded to the person/team who don't record a single death during the contest.

4. Participants in the contest who murder or otherwise arrange the death of anyone on their list (or anyone else's list), shall forfeit their buyin, be removed from the contest and be reported to the proper authorities.

Submissions, questions, payments, etc... can be sent to Fritzle *AT* Gmail *DOT* Com

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Why I don't play for real stakes online

A $1.20 PL O/8 tourney online. Single table. I'm barely 4th in chips with 2,435. 4 players left. Blinds at 150/300. I'm dealt 8 9 9 T in the SB. UTG folds, Button calls, I limp in the SB and the BB calls. 3 players to the flop and it's 7 7 T. I pot it for $900 and the BB folds. The Button, who's the big stack at the table due to his donkey-ish ways, calls my pot bet. Turn is J. I go all in for $1,235 and the button insta-calls. He shows:

5 2 T 5

WTF?!?! There's a paired board, no low draw at all, and he calls my all in with middle pair and a five kicker?!?! OMG.

River: 5

WOW. I'm out and shaking my head yet again.

Online sucks. Live Poker Rules! End. Of. Story.

Slowhand? Slowliver.

At age 64, and after well-documented drug and alcohol addictions, Eric Clapton has canceled a concert appearance due to Gallstone surgery.

WTF? I drank a couple of beers one night and went into the hospital. This bastard destroys his liver and never gets Gallstones? The world is *not* fair.

The State of the Quest

I haven't written in a while because, frankly, I haven't been playing a lot of poker. Domestic bliss is the state of my affairs these days and poker, while still a great hobby and a wonderful distraction, is less the focus of my life. Spending time with Ali is genuinely fantastic and I get more satisfaction out of just sitting on the couch with her, watching "Say Yes to the Dress", than I do from playing a random tourney.

Ok, I'm lying just a little. What I meant to say was, I really like to play an online tourney on my laptop while I'm sitting on the couch with Ali, watching "Say Yes to the Dress".


Anyhow, this month almost went by before I realized that it's the two year anniversary of my poker quest! More precisely, it was two years ago this month that I started traveling to far away destinations specifically in pursuit of my stated goal of seeing all of the legal poker rooms in the Continental U.S.

After 24 months of traveling as often as I could, I have seen or played in 135 poker rooms located in 13 different states. Come December 4th, I'll be traveling to Arizona to add another 14 rooms to that total, and 3 more in California, bringing the grand total to 152 poker rooms by the end of the year.

That's 152 rooms in 26 months for an average of 5.8 unique poker rooms a month. That's a pretty nice pace, and one I wish I could keep up. Alas, the aforementioned domestic bliss is forcing me to go to places like Paris instead of Oklahoma. Poor me. :-p

After Arizona, my next weeklong poker trip will most likely be during the summer of 2010. Ali will be studying for her bar exam around that time, freeing me up to get the hell out of her hair! I anticipate Oklahoma (I wasn't kidding) or possibly California. There might also be some long weekend (3-4 days) trips. New Mexico comes to mind and maybe Reno/Tahoe. Also, Ali and I might be going to Vegas when she graduates in May 2010. She's never been and I would love to go for a week and show her around. There won't be a whole lot of poker playing if I go with her, but if I can get her some spa sessions, I might be able to visit the dozen or so poker rooms in Vegas that I missed my last trip there.

In other, slightly distressing news, my poker table (the nice one) is being sold tonight. I was going to wait until the end of the year to sell it, but I got an offer I couldn't refuse from a guy who's opening up a new room in downtown Manhattan near where I live. The combination of the excellent price he's willing to pay combined with the thought that I might still be able to play on it is too good to resist.

They come tonight to pick it up. What this means, of course, is that for the first time in nearly 5 years, I no longer have a poker table in my apartment and can't host games anymore. This is the official end of my hosting duties (Sorry Christine!).

But I'm keeping my chips! Those go with me to the grave.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

One and done

I was a little wired after last night's very exciting, but unfortunate, Monday Night Football game. So I decided to fire up FTP for a quick $2.25 Turbo Pot Limit O/8 tourney. My first hand is K 5 4 2 in the cutoff. It limps to me and I call. Flop comes a *sick* 3 5 5. The BB pots for $150. I repot for $600. He calls. Turn is J and he checks. I move all in for my remaining $870 and he calls. He shows 5 K A Q. By my count, I have 6 hearts to make a flush for the scoop, 3 fours for the boat and a scoop, 3 deuces for a boat and a scoop, 2 Kings for a chop, 3 sixes for a straight and a scoop, 3 sevens for the low and half the pot, 3 eights for the low and half the pot or 3 Aces for the low and half the pot.

So by my reckoning, that's 26 cards that will give me some or all of the pot, 15 for the scoop, 2 for a chop and 9 for half the pot. And that's only with one more card to come!

The river: 9.

One and done. Thanks for playing!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

O/8 goodness and a lapse of concentration

I went to Tuna tonight to play in the $5/$10 Omaha hi/lo game. My primary purpose was to pick up $255 that W owes me from selling my poker table. This was the original table that started the Wall Street Poker league, so it's a little bittersweet, but I can't let that get in the way of business! I chose to pick up the cash on Wed., so I could partake of the juicy O/8 game.

I did very well, scooping some very nice pots, including getting paid off with flopped quad Queens and not having to chop for low! I peaked at +$325, but finished shortly afterwards with +$242 due to a lapse of concentration.

Here's what happened. The game had switched to dealer's choice early on, meaning whoever was the button could choose between Omaha hi/lo or Omaha high only. But that was slowing down the game so we all agreed to make it a rotation game, one round of each. The game would change every time the button got to the 1 seat.

So far so good.

On my last hand before the dealer push, which is when I told myself I was going to leave, I picked up a so-so hand on the button. The game was Omaha high and my hand was K 5 7 6. The flop was a craptacular 5 9 3. I had flopped a meh flush draw, a double gutshot straight draw, a decent backdoor flush draw and an inside straight flush draw. When it checked all the way around to me, I checked, because I only had a four card draw to the nut high. The turn was a trouble card for me, 5. Now I had trip 5's. It checked to the cutoff, who bet it out. I called and everyone else folded. He said, "Uh oh, how badly am I beat here?", and then bet the river blind. Unfortunately, the river was the A, so I was forced to call with my flush and he tabled 5-9 for the boat.

That wasn't the lapse of concentration I was talking about. I decided to leave the table because the new dealer was pushing in and the guy who had just beaten me said, "You can take a courtesy hand". And then I lost concentration. Because the dealer had pushed, I made the mental error of thinking the game was now Omaha Hi-Lo, when, in fact, it was still Omaha high! I took my courtesy hand of 2 5 6 K. It limped around PF and the flop saw 8 players. The flop was 2 4 8. I've got a double gutshot straight draw, and my mind is telling me that I also have a decent low draw! WTF myself?!? It's high only! To make matter worse, I had a talker in my left ear and the dealer was seriously fucking things up. It was raised on the flop and the dealer collected the whole pot and almost dealt the cards before me, and another player called the raise. Then, he dealt the turn Q, but never burned! So then he burned the Q and dealt the real turn, the 3. This gives me the nut straight, but with 3 diamonds on board, isn't great in a multiway hand. However, I felt good about my 65 low! Whoops. The turn was bet and then raised and I called both bets. Both players were going high, I felt, and when I check-called the river (4), one player showed the Ace high flush and the other player showed 8's full. I checked for their lows and tabled 65 low, and was dismayed when I had to be told my last hand was Omaha high only!!!!

Grrrr.... #concentrationfail

Still, I left with $242 in profit and another $255 from the sale of my smaller table. So a good night altogether. Also, I laid 10-1 to a dealer in the top of the 7th that the Yankees would take the first game. He took the bet for $5 and I won that bet, but tipped him the $5 anyway. #niceguyswin