May 22, 2010

Why I Play Live Poker

There are a number of reasons I prefer live poker to online poker, but high on the list is the social aspect of the game.  Don't get me wrong, I'm still playing to win and enjoy making money, but playing live adds the opportunity for some amusing moments.  Last night, I booked my first winning session of the month at the Meadows ATM; not a huge hit (thanks to two coolers), but still a profitable evening.  It was also one of the more pleasant evenings of poker I've enjoyed in a while, as there were no curmudgeons or d-bags, and plenty of friendly chatter.  A few particularly amusing moments:

* * * * *

Two younger kids on my left started chatting, turns out they went to schools relatively near each other in rural Iowa.  As the discussion turned to sports, the conversation went like this:

Kid 1:  You ran cross country?  Did you know "Joe Smith"?
Kid 2:  Well, I had to switch schools before junior year because I got in some trouble.
Kid 1 [laughing]:  So, you do know Joe Smith!
Kid 2 [laughing]:  Yeah, I know him.

* * * * *

In one strange hand, there was an early position raise to $12 from a loose player.  I called with T9s as did three other players.  Then, a solid player in the BB reraised to $42 total.  The original player called, and I figured the reraise was most likely a squeeze play with a wide range of hands, so I called, as did the other limpers.  The last guy was a short stack with just $43 total, so he called rather than put in his last $1.  The flop came out A-K-Q rainbow, it checked to the shortstack who threw in his last $1, which we all flat-called getting 210:1 pot odds, quite possibly the best pot odds I've ever been offered.  That's right, a $210 pot became a $215 pot.  Then, to make matters more bizarre, it was checked down the rest of the way, and the shortstack won with AQ.

* * * * *

At one point, a player made a comment that another player was acting like he was on TV, playing in Poker After Dark or High Stakes Poker.  Suddenly, "Big Mike" (a regular) pipes up with his suggested TV show—"3/6 at Breakfast", featuring nits playing 3/6 LHE in the morning, chasing draws, complaining about bad beats, getting their Aces cracked, and obsessing about hitting the bad beat jackpot.  Seems like a reality TV winner ...

* * * * *

Finally, a hand went down where one player flopped top two pair, and another player floated the flop with overcards.  The floater ended up going runner-runner for a straight and the win.  The losing player took it well, but jokingly said to the dealer:

"Hey, I know you! You deal on Full Tilt!"

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