(I was going to post this if FGators' thread because while I don't know him, he has come to represent, to me at least, the definition of running bad. But I don't know FGators personally, and he seems nice enough to me, so why bother hijacking his bonfire of the poker vanities thread?
– if you are running bad, then some one else is running good, and you need to kill this person who runs good in order to stop running bad
The Schrödinger Cat thought experiment has got me thinking about running bad in poker. If you are not familiar with the thought experiment, read about it here Schrödinger's cat
. I recommend you read it because I suck at explaining it...
The gist of it is there is a gun controlled by a quantum particle that is likely to go off as it is not, and this gun is placed in a box with a cat. So the cat is either dead or alive in the box, but you won't know until you open it. Once you open the box, the cat is either dead or alive for certain, but before you open it, the cat exists in blurred state of being both dead and alive.
Some postulate that while the cat exists in both states prior to opening the box, but once you do, the wave function collapses and you have a dead cat or an alive cat.
Others submit that there are two universes, one where the cat is dead in the box and the other where the cat is alive. Before you open the box, you exist in both universes, but once you open the box the universes diverge. In one you feel guilty about killing your cat (unless you’re that cat murdering bastard Bill Frist) and in the other you feel relieved that science has not taken your beloved pet away from you.
Now this brings us to poker, because you will either hit your draw or you won't. Your opponent will either such out or he won't. Prior to the river, you exist in both universes, but once the river comes and the result is known, your universes have diverged. In one universe you are happy, in the other you’re busto.
For starters, one can take consolation in the fact that while he is sad; another version of him exists in another universe that is extremely happy. But that's not a very good consolation, because you still have to pay your bills in this universe, and in fact, you will soon start to find yourself being jealous of your other self who is balling around in another universe where BrandiRose can fly.
Back to the point, which is that we can use Schrödinger’s Cat to prove that there really are players who cannot win, even though they play correctly.
Start with one person, and then we have the AK hitting or the 44 holding. Now we have two of you, and low and behold you both take another flip. The you who won with AK flips, and you win or lose. The you who lost with AK flips, and you win and lose. Now we have four of you, as follows:
Version A – Won with AK first time, won the second;
Version B – Won with AK the first time, lost the second;
Version C – Lost with AK the first time, won the second; and
Version D – Lost with AK the first time, lost the second.
You can go on. In the next round, you will have 8 versions of you, of which one will have won all three flips and one other who lost all three. The next level, you will have 16 versions, but again, there will only be one version who won four in a row and one who lost four in a row. Then 32, 64, 128, 256, 512 total versions of you, but in each case there will only be one player who lost all of his flips, and only one player who won all of his flips.
Stepping aside from the extremes, there are definitely in betweens, there are versions of you who must have lost 80% of their flips. That doesn’t seem fair, but if we buy into the multiple universe explanation of Schrödinger Cat, then such versions of you are a certainty. Of the millions of versions of you that exist, the number of you who lose 80% of the flips is an extremely tiny percentage, but they are there. So maybe people like FGators suck at poker, or maybe they are just the unlucky versions of themselves traveling down the roads of diverging universes and just happen to reside in the present universe that you also happen to populate at the moment. It’s for you to decide.
But, let’s say you are running badly, and you have decided that it’s not due to poor play but you in fact are one of the unlucky versions of yourself that Schrödinger’s Cat tells us must exist. What can you do about it? Anything?
I propose that there is a way. For example, the unlucky version of FGators exists in our universe today, and if he loses on Saturday and we hear about it, then this unlucky version of him has traveled down the same path of diverging universes that you traveled yourself. Why is it that this unlucky version of FGators remains in your universe? Why have your paths not diverged?
The answer is that unlucky version of FGators is connected to some other player in this universe who runs better than he should. Quantum experimentation tells us this must be the case. When quantum physicists reversed the polarity of one particle and caused it to spin in another direction, they discovered that a seemingly disconnected particle’s spin was also reversed—a particle that the scientists did not act on at all! Our unlucky poker player is the one particle who is countered by another particle that is extremely lucky. If the unlucky player wants to reverse his fortunes he can read his Sklansky some more—or more effectively, he can reverse the fortunes of his lucky counterpart.
So when you are running bad (and you know you’re not playing bad), some person out there is running way better at life than he should and that the two of you are traveling down the same path of diverging universes. You need to cause this lucky person a to have a very unlucky day, and what could be more unlucky that getting hit by a bus, having a brick fall on your head from above, etc., etc., etc.
I hope this helps you all in your future endeavors. Thanks for reading.