January 20, 2010

Advanced Poker-Drinking:
An Introduction

Why just get drunk in Vegas, when you can get paid to get drunk in Vegas?

Author’s note: I first wrote about poker-drinking in a post on All Vegas Poker a little over two years ago. Since then, the Vegas poker-drinking scene has changed, primarily for the worse, as many poker rooms continue to reduce the quality of the free booze they serve. So, I figured it was time to bring my analysis of poker-drinking to my new blog, along with some updating and editing. If you read the original on AVP, there’s not much new to see here, other than an updating of the poker-drinking rankings for Vegas poker rooms. To those of you who do not frequent AVP, I hope you find this series of seven posts either enlightening or entertaining. If not, have a drink and you’ll forget all about it!

Introduction: The poker boom of the past decade has brought forth myriad books, manuals, treatises, and websites devoted to improving poker playing skills. These publications have fed the swarms of poker locusts who inhabit most Vegas poker rooms, stripping every last chip from the assorted donkeys, fish, duck-billed Ed-Hardy-wearing platypi, and conventioneers who find themselves attracted to the olfactory siren song of cigarette breath, three day old underwear, and pieces of sandwiches putrefying in the fat rolls of the guy in the five—and six—seat.

But what about the casual poker player, the intrepid soul whose sole purpose for playing poker is that it seems like a “cool” way to get hammered while losing less money than playing $25 blackjack next to a tattoo-covered LA trust fund baby and looking more manly than playing nickel slots next to a chain-smoking granny? Although the poker-drinker is a common denizen of the Vegas poker scene, his (and he is male more than 98.62% of the time) unique poker strategies have not been subjected to rigorous mathematical and game theory analysis. The current poker-drinker is forced to live by his wits, learning by trial and error and the occasional “secret tip” from a degenerate fraternity brother.

Such a situation is a travesty that can no longer be tolerated. Casual poker players deserve to know for certain whether they are getting drunk on their own dime, or are being fed mother’s milk and whiskey from the swollen teats of the Vegas casino cash cows. This brief treatise is the result of my analysis (often interrupted by the annoyance of “work”) of the proper strategy for getting hammered in Vegas poker rooms. Although my treatise is based on solid intellectual theory, my conclusions have been tested and validated through extensive field research conducted by myself and a number of dedicated volunteer researchers (primarily my fellow degenerate Ironmen of Poker). At this point, I am confident we have established the validity of the “Fundamental Poker-Drinking Theorem”:

Utilizing optimal strategy, drinking at the poker table is profitable.

In analyzing this theorem, we begin with the core principle of poker-drinking: to drink the most of the best for the least. The key to understanding this core principle is that in Vegas, it is possible to drink without gambling, but it is very expensive to do so. Consequently, the goal of the sophisticated poker-drinker is to play poker and simultaneously consume free drinks for less than the equivalent price of booze—or beer, or fruity drinks, or Zima Gold, whatever trips your liver—in a Vegas bar.

In future posts, we will examine the six basic rules of profitable poker-drinking:

Rule I—Drink!

Rule II—Drink Faster!
Rule III—Drink Better!
Rule IV—Seek Fast Booze and Slow Play
Rule V—Prioritize Booze Over Poker
Rule VI—Focus on Poker-Drinking Position

Stay tuned, true believers!

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