Sunday, August 17, 2008

Hitting the reset button

It's actually quite amazing how quickly time flies. I just noticed that my last post was... well, a week ago. Work hasn't been crazy but enough to keep me busy. I probably still work a good 10 hrs a day which is not bad since I already mentioned here that I can't remember the last time I only had to work 40 hrs in a week.

On a more personal note, I am going through a lot of things. Some I can share here, some I can't... at least not yet. But between divorce, hectic work, surprisingly busy social life, and a few other things that are going on in my life, my focus on poker has dwindled to say the least. I probably only set aside about an hour per day to play poker which is why I really haven't played in MTTs... and hell, these days, even when I do, I barely last an hour so maybe it makes no difference. My game is in a tailspin, I feel like, and I think that's mainly because my focus has been going.

One thing I really noticed about my game is how it goes wrong after a nasty beat. I'm not talking about tilting... even though I guess it is tilting. I'm not cussing or shouting or breaking anything but my game goes a little off course after a bad beat. It's like continuing to drive with poor alignment in your car. At first, you think the alignment might be slightly off. Then you hit a bump. And then you notice that the wheel seems to be pulling you to one side more than usual. But you keep going... and before you know it, your alignment is shot, your tires are worn down and boom, costly expense to fix it all up.

Chad, who recently made his come back into the blogging world, wrote a great post about entitlement. And that really hit home in the sense that that's how I feel after a bad beat. That's how my game goes off course. In other words, I only have about an hour to play. I play decent for a little while and let's say that over a few tables, I'm up a few hundred. And then I get bad beated... and then next thing I know, I'm playing a lot more hands (and a lot worse hands), thinking "now that I got bad beated, I'm entitled to dishing out a bad beat of my own." Wow... what a misguided thought process. But I'm just putting it out there. So, here's one example where I got bad beated...

*Warning - bad beat hand coming up*

PokerStars Game #19676346088: Hold'em No Limit ($2/$4) - 2008/08/17 - 00:56:24 (ET)
Table 'Gliese' 6-max Seat #5 is the button
Seat 1: Bo$$playa425 ($467.45 in chips)
Seat 2: Dirty Vizzer ($366 in chips)
Seat 3: vavilon ($403.40 in chips)
Seat 4: sampy345 ($528.15 in chips)
Seat 5: Bidicha ($1406.80 in chips)
Seat 6: cariadon ($464.10 in chips)
cariadon: posts small blind $2
Bo$$playa425: posts big blind $4

*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Dirty Vizzer [Kd Kc]
Dirty Vizzer: raises $10 to $14
vavilon: folds
sampy345: folds
Bidicha: folds
cariadon: raises $28 to $42
Bo$$playa425: folds
Dirty Vizzer: raises $80 to $122
cariadon: calls $80
*** FLOP *** [4c 2h 6d]
cariadon: bets $342.10 and is all-in
Dirty Vizzer: calls $244 and is all-in
Uncalled bet ($98.10) returned to cariadon
*** TURN *** [4c 2h 6d] [7h]
*** RIVER *** [4c 2h 6d 7h] [8h]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
cariadon: shows [Ah Kh] (a flush, Ace high)
Dirty Vizzer: mucks hand
cariadon collected $733 from pot

I mean this is an ideal situation. The idiot decides to overplay his AK and go ahead and jam. To use Bayne's phrase, I was compelled to call an all in with KK on this all low board. I lose this pot and then next thing I know, instead of continuing to play patient poker, I go into this weird mindset. Next thing I know, I'm slowly spewing money. That's the worst part. It's not even that I am getting involved in big pots with small hands and spewing... it's like I'm raising more hands with garbage, getting a lot of action and having to fold. It's just terrible, terrible poker.

So, I decided that I am going to get myself refocused. Like LJ mentioned to me, I was losing focus and my mind wasn't in poker anymore for a while. I'm gonna change that. It's like with Windows. When there's a problem, reboot and voila, everything is back to normal. If I'm committed to only playing for an hour, that's what I'm gonna do regardless of the result. I'm gonna be patient and not let the beats affect me. After all, I'm not entitled to the money on the table any more than anyone else. I just need to remind myself to continue to stay focused and control only the things I can control which is how I play - not the cards that are dealt to me or not the way the opponent plays.

1 comment:

Sia said...

bad bad beat. That sucks.

Why so much Pokerstars playing these days? I can't properly stalk you on FullTilt if you're not playing.