Wednesday, January 09, 2008

I am Officially Changing My Name to Rodney. Dangerfield.

So last night was the first night of free bar poker in 2008. I anticipated going with a small mix of anticipation and dread, since (1) I had not been to a free poker night in weeks and I was starting feel some withdrawal; and (2) I did play poker at the Harrah's in New Orleans (did I ever blog about that?) and, well, that was disastrous.

Here's where I start getting technical. If you don't know Texas Hold 'Em, this may mean less to you than it would otherwise, but I'll try to keep it accessible.

I had managed to amass a decent amount of chips by getting a King-high flush within the first few hands that I played. Not a whole lot, but more than usual, and I was happy. But I had to make sure I was still being cautious, because I have this terrible tendency to think that because I have a lot of chips, I can do stupid things and get away with it.

No. Last night my bigger concern was with really bad cards, and a fucktard at my table who, while being perfectly amiable the entire time, seemed to have it out for me.

I got into another hand with decent pocket cards. I think they pocket 9's or something. I raised into the pot, hoping to drive my fellow players out. Instead, Fucktard, who had amassed a large number of chips already as well, called me.

The flop was pretty much crap: 2-5-7 or something. Nothing to help much, but I had the top pair, and basically I figured that this flop wouldn't help anything except really crappy pockets that no one would really care to keep. So I bet heavily into the pot, pretty much thinking that it would scare away anyone with a really crappy hand.

Fucktard was the only one who called me.

Here's something you need to realize in Texas Hold 'Em: when someone calls your sizable raise, they're trying to signal to you that they think they have a better hand than you do. At least informally at the games I've been playing at (I don't know if it's a poker-wide term), it's called respecting the bet when you beg off of a hand by folding to another player without having to run through the entire deal.

At the end of the hand, Fucktard won, showing his hole cards to be... 5-7 off suit.

Who the hell calls a raise when all you have is a 5-7 off suit?

In this case, the guy got extremely lucky to have hit two pair. I even called him on why he would stay in with a 5-7 off suit. His response: "I figured I had the chips, so why not?"

At that point I was still laughing it off, because hey, I can kind of see the logic to that. Still, I was wounded from the hand, but I was still doing decently enough to shrug that off.

A few deals later, the short stack at the table goes all in. In a round where the big blind is some $200, he bet $850. Given the play we'd already seen earlier, this is not a hugely substantial raise. Fucktard had already previously called the $200, now his choice was whether nor not to call the $650 it would take to play through this hand.

Fucktard folded. And this where I went ballistic.

"Woah woah, you'll call my raises with a 5-7 off suit, but you'll fold to this guy? What could you possibly have that was worse than that, and what happened to 'Why not, I have the chips?'"

Clearly, it was personal. Then I even called him a motherfucker. While laughing, of course, but still, the joke was, basically, "oh, so clearly you're just calling me, mothafucka." He laughed; I was less than 100% amused.

By this point I'm on tilt, but I don't care, because (a) it's free poker, and (b) I'd kinda rather play with people who are playing the game than with people who are treating it as, well, free poker. So the next chance I get, I'm determined to go for broke.

I get a A-Q unsuited. I raise into the pot, and Fucktard, explicitly announcing that since I've called it personal, he's calling.

The flop, again, has crap in it -- 4-7-9 or something, and I pushed all-in with my last $4,000. (That's a huge move at this point, but again, I no longer care.) Normally, a show of strength here would be sufficient to drive an opponent out, and my friends who have played with me before would probably have caved because I have a reputation for not doing that lightly.

Fucktard, of course, calls. No respect, I tell ya. None. He's AGS (I just made that up (I think); it stands for "ain't got shit"), but he'll call me just because he can, even if that reasoning is inapplicable to the other guys on the table.

What does he have? A 5-6.

Like, what the hell.

And, of course, he hits his 8 on the river, giving him a straight.

And I take my leave.

No respect, I tell ya. I don't know why I keep playing this damned game. I love it, but holy canoli, it treats me like a beaten mistress.

I'll be back there again next week. And odds are very, very good that I will avoid as much as humanly possible being on the same table with Fucktard again.

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