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Old 05-03-2014, 07:54 AM   #126
Dubnjoy000
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

MONKEY TILT


WARNING : I am clearly steaming, therefore this little cyberspace blog of mine will serve as a rage/tilt/anger release for the stretch of this post... It might be annoying for some, rated R for others, and clearly not your typical happy-go-lucky Adam Sandler's flick for all!!!

Perhaps the tilt is induced by the uninspiring numerous old men that end up here, in the Philippines


Spoiler:


Maybe it is the fact that I could not connect to my land connection for 30 min, ran out of load on my backup source, and loan my third source (a USB stick) to the girl I am seeing... Yes, getting blinded out of multiple MTTs can leave someone APE-TILTING indeed! OR perhaps it is the fact that I woke up on the wrong side of bed, tossing and turning, only to have to fight against gravity all day, as it was trying to pin me down...

Do any of us, foreigners, actually belong in the Philippines? Are we fully accepted? Sure our $$$ gets us a comfortable lifestyle and a certain amount of power as a consumer (like anywhere in the world), as we are treated like Kings and get a handful of women, but can we actually call home this part of the world?

Considering that Asians are usually abundantly friendly and welcoming, there exists an accommodating feeling of proximity in between locals and foreigners, yet a distinct gap still digs itself at multiple levels.

Legally : Whether you want it or not, it remains very hard for an expat to get any Asian citizenship, even after legal marriage. It might be for the sake of protecting a given country from outside investments - which is totally understandable -, but a foreigner will never fully belong here, legally or not.

Culturally : Yes Asian culture is fascinating, and centuries after millennias of heritage can acutely be seen through the daily gestures... Yet, our Western roots (and English language) clearly separate us, once again, leaving us on the outside looking in...

Financially : To be Caucasian already puts us on a certain pedestal economically. Yet it tilts me to see how certain hideous foreigners use this to their advantage in order to mask their insecurities behind this inherent entitlement... Here they are, old, hideous and poor by Western standards, yet still strutting along the streets, with a young-candid-looking chick by their side, as if the world rightfully belongs to them!!!

Life is not fair. Nor just. We are all born socially unequal depending on the color of our skin, our geographical birth location, our heritage, family, mother tongue etc. Is it fair that on a good week, I can make what someone makes here in a couple of years? Nope. Do I feel guilty about it? No, but I certainly do not use it to enhance any social status (and do hope one day to be selfless enough to be able to give back, as injustices leave a bad taste in my mouth...).

As much as I do appreciate various part of the Philippines, I never felt a sense of belonging as much as I did in Cambodia and especially Vietnam... Maybe I ease myself more easily in a backpacker traveler scene, as opposed to a retiree one...

Nevertheless, it does help to have met a 60 year old American fellow yesterday, that popped over my table while I was having lunch and surfing online, and simply said "hey, is there always this many old men with young Asian girls a third of their age?". He didn't wait for an answer before chuckling, then continuing "I mean, I would happily get laid with a 20 year old chick, but as far as a girlfriend, I can't imagine her being under 50 without losing some complicity... hell, what do they talk about while waiting for their food!". This guy has been roaming in SE Asia for 16 months now, still seeking, at his age, for a partner to love and a peaceful place to settle down. He definitely made my day. It helps to see older comrades that you can look up to, not away from.

My girl just got here tonight, so we will be hanging out for the next 5 days, exploring the surrounding areas, beaches, restaurants, while taking time to cuddle in the sand, of course, and swimming the seas, obviously. I have just purchased a ticket for Canada and will be visiting the ole Country for 1-2 months, before coming back over here. But the next time around, I will make sure to spend more time in quieter areas at the expense of staying in a touristic haven, like Bohol.

Anyhow, thx for reading and I do apologize for the Monkey-tilt-rant, but it did serve as a form of release. And now, to finish this post on a different note, a couple of hand histories.


Hand 1

Villain opens 2bb MP and has been getting involved quite a lot, enough to safely label him as a maniac. After a couple of folds, I look down at K5 on the button and decide to flat. The blinds are tagish to a default, I therefore suspect both of them to find often enough a reason to fold ; as far as a possible 3bet is concerned, I suspect to be met by a call or worse, a 4bet, thus reversing my anticipated fold equity, which we obviously do not want.

Flop comes K94 which does not decelerate our opponent's plan of action : he fires half pot. We were initially going to float most boards, getting the most out of our marginal holding by planning to steal on later streets, but having top pair makes the call all that much brainless.

Turn is a 6. He fires 60% pot. I call.

Blame it on multi-tabling, on being on auto-pilot, but I make the call without putting much thought into it... After all, what might have been a trapping-call on the flop has now become an unlikely turn bluff catcher...

River is the 8. He tanks-checks, seemingly capping his range at 1 pair hand... I salvage the hand by shoving for 90% pot and getting an insta-fold.

Is this a fold preflop? A big part of my game is to isolate fish-limpers preflop by squeezing in the CO and button, but is calling in position a maniac's open to spewy with a marginal holding?


Hand 2

Loose-agro villain (VPIP 27, PR 27 and a fold to 3bet of 50%) opens MP 2bb with 19bb behind ; it is folded to me on the button holding pocket deuces (19bb, VPIP 17, PR 12, having played unusually tight thus far). SB is a rock (VPIP 10 PR 7) but only has 7bb. BB is also incredibly tight and has me slightly covered. Do you make the shove here?


Well, the beach is calling me, and rumor has it that it is a tilt-free zone...



Run good all, and avoid monkey-tilt

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Old 05-06-2014, 02:28 PM   #127
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Road Tripping


Road trippin' with my two favorite allies
Fully loaded we got snacks and supplies
It's time to leave this town
It's time to steal away
Let's go get lost
Anywhere in the USA


Road Tripping, Red Hot Chili Peppers


We all know it, heard it a gazillion times, yet let me repeat it on this gazillion + 1 occasion : it is not the destination but the journey that matters. Whoever muttered those words first, was without a doubt referring to road tripping.

While the Chocolate Hills are nothing to frown upon




Chocolate Hills, Bohol, Philippines


, sweeter was the ride on the motorbike to get there. You can accredit the pleasantness of the trip on the great sunny afternoon or on the natural beauty of the indulging sceneries




Church damaged by Hurricane Haiyan in Loboc

, but the journey to get there stole the show, making the destination a simple mark on a map (or a place to stretch, click a few pics and rehydrate).

For 125cc, the motorbike had a sweet little engine. While it would not permit us to surpass 90 km/h, one would not want to go much faster on the unpredictable Filipino roads... After all, all it would take is a runner-runner bad beat to get shoved into the landscape, thus ending up in the muck...



Will tell you this : yes Filipina women are soft and romantic, but that apparent equity can be counterfeited by jealousy and unrelentless questioning like, "where are you?", "who are you with?" or "what are you doing?" etc. Have you ever been exposed to a "ctrl-paste" interrogation? Here is what it would look like :

"where are you?", "who are you with?" or "what are you doing?" where are you?", "who are you with?" or "what are you doing?"where are you?", "who are you with?" or "what are you doing?" where are you?", "who are you with?" or "what are you doing?"where are you?", "who are you with?" or "what are you doing?" where are you?", "who are you with?" or "what are you doing?

Haha, ok, perhaps I am slightly exaggerating - just slightly -, but it is a cultural shock by itself to be exposed to such a cross-examination

Nah, all joking put aside, she is a sweet one, and quite atypical as far as Filipina woman are concerned (especially in regards to Catholic religion, as she is an adept of meditation and Buddhism in general...).

I also introduced her to the world of poker by showing her the famous Tom Dwan vs Phil Ivey monster pot on Highstakes poker ; I am sure most of you have seen it, but it is always worth a revisit.

Spoiler:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fSqkhN9Rqk0

Well, after being 5 days away from the grind, I will be back at it for the next 3 days.

Run good all

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Old 05-18-2014, 01:09 PM   #128
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Cebu, Part 2

After a few minuscule hours of tossing and turning, I wake up in a rush, jump in a cab and barely catch the Cebu ferry before its imminent departure. Nothing that a dose of wind and fresh air on the deck will not remedy though : tired or not, leave it to the excitement of travelling to shake off the old dusty weariness!!!

Engeli is waiting at the Pier. Her best friend is getting married tomorrow. Or, like we like to put it, divorced.

Outside of being cynical, this joke started years ago when, showing up late to my elder's sister marriage ceremony, I turned to my girlfriend at the time, gave her a serious glance and said "oh oh, I hope they are not divorced by now..." Haha. But on a more serious note, lets get some marital facts straight.

Marriage has always been inherent to mankind. Indeed. Since cavemen were cavemen. And cavewomen, well... cavewomen!!! You see, even in the beginning, women would picture a Cinderalla-esque marriage that would magically fulfill all their princess-like dreams... And men... well... they would obviously turn towards the booze, more liquor (or whatever they had for numbing means at the time), and drink themselves to oblivion in order to make it through the tedious ceremony!!! And this, my friends, is a reality engrained in human nature since the dawn of time. So it is by obeying to the same transcendental laws that I turn to Engeli in the taxi and state the obvious :

- "Men only get married to please women."

- "God I wish I don't get married in this lifetime."

- "And if I do get married, I will most definitely fall asleep during my own ceremony!!!"

She takes it with a smile, as she actually shares some of my exaggerated sentiments (but still has unremovable traces of Cinderella inside of her, obviously) and enjoys my willingness to kid around even at the most serious of times.





All the best to this very sweet couple... Unfortunately, due to a miscarriage, the bride had to be taken to the hospital on her wedding night... Talk about a bad beat.


Outside of this marriage/divorce and hanging out with Engeli, I managed to squeeze in a couple of all-nighters at Waterfront Casino (while she was sleeping). And thankfully, this time around, the action was not lacking.


I show up slightly late for the "big game", at 8 pm, and have to unwillingly settle for a 25-50 game (again, conversions are about 43 pesos/ 1 US$). I am uninterested. Jaded. The action leaves me unfazed, as I barely observe the tendencies of my opponents. After 2h, just as I decide that my time would be better spent alongside Engeli, my name gets called for the 25-50-100. Sweet! There are some poker Gods after all!

Something must be in the air tonight, as most players buy in the 20-30k range and do not shy away from stacking off. So after a couple of rounds, we find ourselves with a decent 350k on the table. Sweet! But before getting into a couple of HH, let's look at a few disparities with the live games I am accustomed to.

- People freely talk on the phone during a hand. While I have not seen anyone overdo it, it still is somewhat perplexing to see someone indifferently chatting away on their mobile while splashing chips around...

- Even if a player is absent from the table, he is obliged to pay the blinds + the straddle. I even witnessed someone getting blinded out for a couple of hours!!!

- Half of the players simply leave their chips in their racks. Doesn't really disturb me though, as it avoids confusion for when...

- Quite a few players hide their higher denominator chips underneath their stacks. This one is a headache and a half, for, when you take into consideration someone as nearsighted as I am (and too lazy to carry his glasses around), it leaves such a person in limbo on numerous occasions...


Hand 1

My online MTT tendencies translate to this live game as I am playing fairly tight, yet still exude a somewhat agro table image. I get dealt KK in the BB and after a CO raise of 500 and a SB call, I put in a 3 bet-squeeze to 2500. Both of them call.

Flop comes A85. SB checks. I contemplate betting, but decide to check, thus playing my hand face-up, but feel that my opponents will act in a similar transparent fashion... CO bets a tentative 2k into a pot of 7500, leaving us heads-up. I make the call.

Villain is the most competent foe at this table and probably the biggest steady winner in this game. He is selectively aggressive, yet bluffs in obvious spots (that are still probably +EV in this game).

Turn is a 9, adding nothing to the equation. I decide to check again, fully realizing that by doing so, my hand is turned face-up as QQ-KK. Villain goes in the tank, grabs 5k worth of chips, and makes my life complicated by adding them to the pot. Hummm... Do I fold here? Is he capable of firing 2 bullets vs a capped range? I make the call (in hindsight, I prefer a fold).

River is 2, completing the flush. Villains shoves pot. I tank for 3 minutes, trying to figure out if he is capable of turning a 1010-QQ sort of hand into a triple-barrel-bluff, but come to the realization that he definitely has more combos of Aces in his range.


Hand 2



After the whole table limps, I look down at Q9o on the button and decide to conform to the will of the majority... Sure a squeeze/iso in position would be normally advisable in a saner world where my raise frequency on button was not in the neighborhood of 60% ... But BB, a donkish passif player, squeezes 25X to 2500 with clear signs of anxiety as he watches the domino folds around the table... my rebellious nature stands up to conformity this time around as I make the call, hence taking a flop in position versus a wide range.

Villain checks on the J34 board. I feel that a player of his mediocre caliber will often limp-reraise-overbet AK or, in this case, make an obvious squeeze. Sure, I am aware that it is borderline suicidal to put an opponent on a precise hand at the detriment of a range, but to this day - online and live - AK remains imo the hand played with the most transparency by weaker players... I bet 2900 with the intention of firing 2 or 3 streets. He insta-calls.

Turn brings a 10. Villain insta-checks. Hummmm, some added equity for my Q9, but a card that probably will dissuade him from folding AK... Instead of firing 2 more bullets, I decide to delay my steal until the river.

River is a 6. He checks again. I straw away from my original thought of betting big on the river as I smoothly push 5100 in chips to the center of the table, as I feel any sizing will make this particular foe fold A high... But his call with A10o almost beats me to the middle. Nice hand, nice hand


Hand 3

After noticing that all 3 of hijack, CO and button have no interest in playing whatsoever, I look down at A7 and make the "pseudo" button raise in MP to 700 (all 3 of the blinds are definitely opponents I am willing to play a wide range vs IP). SB + a limper calls.

Flop comes a sweet A23, enticing me to check in a deceptive matter behind both my opponents. Turn is a J. SB checks again while our second opponent, the original limper, bets 1500. I feel my A is almost always good, but again opt for the passif route of calling. SB does the same.

River is an offsuit 10. SB checks as does the limper. Hummmmm... I was going to make the river call, but hadn't given any thought into the possibility of value betting... So I make a small sizing of 2300, continuing to under-rep my hand as I hope to get hero-called... But SB makes a big raise to 12k, what!!

As opposed to online, I usually do not shy away from a thin value bet on the river in such a game, for not many foes are willing to X/raise bluff river at these stakes... Yet, villain is repping so few hands. Think about it. Any of 22, 33 or 45 would of made some noise by now (and AA & JJ are highly unlikely)... 2 pairs would probably just make the call... That leaves us with KQ. Is he fishy enough to X/call with a broadway gutter on a A turn and then go for a river X/R... I don't think so. He either has KQ or a few other combos of flush draws. Do you make the call here?

The session ended in a sweet degen fashion, as 5 of us started to shoot 1k blind preflop. Haha, it is good not to think about stuff such as BR management, equity, pot odds etc. and to simply let our degenerate self burst out!!!

Run good all

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Old 05-23-2014, 09:36 AM   #129
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Have you guys seen Kevin Durant's MVP acceptance video? Powerful little piece of filmage. I do not remember any sports monologue that was as moving as Durant's humility, sincerity. Lines like "we weren't suppose to make it" when addressing his social-economical heritage is simply earth-shaking.

http://www.nba.com/video/channels/aw...s-nba-mvp.nba/

I have lots of respect for a dude that has that much humility in a sport full with ego... I hope I can do the same away from the poker tables...
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Old 05-25-2014, 11:30 AM   #130
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

The Lives of Others

November 2001, Victoria, Canada. The junkie neighbor is at it again : he is coughing like a madman, clearly incapacitated. This goes on for 5-10 minutes before he accumulates enough oxygen, fills his lungs, and manages to blow out "Jeeeessus fuccckkkin Christ!!!" ; but as soon as this grumble has left him, he struggles to fill the void again...

I have grown use to this ritual, for it repeats itself every evening, oftentimes for 1h straight. What can you do : these kind of incidents are to be expected in this slum-monthly-rental-room, just like the dead rat found underneath my bed.



Having hitchhiked across Canada 8 times, Mexico and Australia twice, I have slept by the side of many roads, stayed overnight in numerous city parks and have been continuously exposed to the nomadic/homeless life of a travelling itinerant. But this post is not about me : it is about others.

It is about your opponent that you beat out of a big pot, as his face sinks into gloominess... It is a stranger's eyes that you cross paths with in the streets... that momentary penetrating glance, only to see it vanish like a faded memory... It is about different cultures, insights, various focalizations or journeys into the unknown... Or more precisely, about a girl you might meet in a foreign country.

Her name is Engeli. She is feisty, defying, rebellious, thus refusing to let the weight of the world crush her, even though it sits inconveniently on her shoulders. You see, after her father died 4 years ago, the burden of the family was delegated to her, as her older brother preferred the taste of the bottle to one of responsibilities.

It is surely not easy to put a younger sister into chemical Engineer school, nor is it facile to provide for her mom and younger brother. The 4 am alarm clock is not always a delight to the mind, and in all likelihood, neither is a 12h labor day... but it is how one stands up in the face of gravity that matters... how one challenges destiny, laughs at ironic twists of events.

Meanwhile, how does one act in a highly Christian society when the heritage of the Conquistadors leave them indifferent? Well, they wear a mask, smile when someone says "In God we trust", for the fear of being socially excluded holds more bearing/importance than remaining loyal to secular truths ; sure, the absence of absolute right or wrong can leave one lost at sea in a Catholic society, yet it remains nothing that a fake approving smile will not disseminate.

How many moments of numb emptiness has she felt, staring out the window of her shared-small-bedroom-window?



How do we handle life downswings? The inner struggles of a daily grind? Each of us has a unique story and while in the scheme of things, we are but a dot in the big picture, I remain quite curious about the trajectory taken by these specific dots... Anyhow, wanted to share with y'all a glimpse into her life, hope you appreciated.

Peace
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Old 06-03-2014, 09:29 AM   #131
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Rearview Mirror

Writing these lines from the 2GO ferry, way sweeter of a ride than when I first came this way on the cargo ship




You have a choice of a 2, 4 or 8 person cabin, with tv, curtains to your bunk and a personal washroom ; not too shabby .





and a photo from my Cebu hotel for good measures (the owner of my gf doesn't like my presence in the building, for some unknown reason...)





On my way to Manila, where I will be attending another 10 day vipassana retreat, and dipping once again into the inner depths of nothingness during 10 days of silence... but before, a look back at Bohol and the 3 months that I am leaving behind.


The Grind : It was an uphill ride barely obstructed by your sparse bumpy moments ; in fact, the journey was smooth sailing from the get go, as I did not have a single losing week in 3 months (although the past month consisted of small negligible wins). I thus took joy in grinding 5-6 days/week, finding new challenges/interests in adding new sites and games into my daily schedule.


Women : If the first one I met was mainly based on friendship and casual pleasure, the second one might be in for the long haul... In fact, she is sleeping right now, coming to do this retreat with me... We plan on getting an apartment by a peaceful beach in 2-3 months time, as both of us work from the comfort of home... but that is still some time away to really give it too much thought now.


Living in a tourist hotspot : A combination of reasons draw a herd of travelers into a single destination, whether it be a white sand beach, a tourist-friendly combination of restaurants, spas, bars, making their stay here within an expected comfort level ; and yes, one would be foolish not to take pleasure in going for peaceful nocturnal swims, laying down in the sand cuddled with a lover, going for endless walks on the sand, or to explore the surrounding areas on a motorbike. That said, it remains easy. Expected. Controlled. A nitty ABC game, really, where no new moves are explored or gears shifted.

Do we go travelling simply to reproduce the familiarity of back home? Is alcohol, pretty women and exquisite food the desired end game? Shall we close our eyes forever when locals are being paid 150p for a day's work (the minimum wage in Bohol is 280/day) while the foreigner employers are happily getting drunk and charging 500p/meal?


Anyhow, I will be flying back to Vancouver mid-June for a few days, before hitting Florida for a 1 week Caribbean cruise (and will be sure to hit the Hardrock casino) before making my way back to Dawson City for 1-2 months. I do not see myself leaving Asia for more than 10 weeks, but we will see.

Run good all

PS : This blog is 4 hits from 10 000, so I would like to thank all for reading/posting. I really enjoy to share thoughts/stories here and hope you do equally. Maybe this modest blog will see 50k or even 100k hits... I certainly hope so.

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Old 06-03-2014, 10:35 AM   #132
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dubnjoy000 View Post
Have you guys seen Kevin Durant's MVP acceptance video? Powerful little piece of filmage. I do not remember any sports monologue that was as moving as Durant's humility, sincerity. Lines like "we weren't suppose to make it" when addressing his social-economical heritage is simply earth-shaking.

http://www.nba.com/video/channels/aw...s-nba-mvp.nba/

I have lots of respect for a dude that has that much humility in a sport full with ego... I hope I can do the same away from the poker tables...
I enjoyed his speech. Love rooting for Durant, and I respect his humility. My fear, though, is that he's too humble to win a title. Look at MJ, Kobe, and Lebron--all egotists whose personalities lead to winning on the court and arrogance off the court. Game 6 vs. the Spurs, esp. the overtime when Durant deferred to Westbrook, was painful to watch. I hope he can get it done.

Great posts! Enjoy your retreat.
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Old 06-18-2014, 03:48 AM   #133
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

The Way Back

When one has spent 10 days in complete silence, breathe by breathe exclusively absorbed by the rising sensations on the body, it comes as no surprise that the outside world might be somewhat of a shock at first. Overwhelming. A sensory explosion. So it is with the desire to be in a low key/relaxing atmosphere that Engeli and myself set our sights towards White Beach, a nearby getaway for Manilites.

Our first impression of the premises is indeed soothing, as the low season and the absence of other foreigners permits us to ease slowly into the phenomena world.





After a good meal, a swim and a nice walk, we are curious as to what the nightlife has to offer, if anything... what a surprise! A series of beach bars suddenly come to life in the form of burlesque shows : a few ladyboys amalgamate and take over the spotlight as there quest-for-stardom-impulses are spontaneously let loose. The majority of the crowd naturally gathers around these 4 bars ; however, further along the beach, trying desperately to snatch away some of the competition, hides a strange little show, to say the least : a 60-something-fat-old-white-dude with a funky red hat, putting on tunes, shaking his booty (somewhat), "waving his hands like he just don't care" and completely immune to the ridicule of it all!!! Words fail to describe the eeriness of the scene





and frankly, so does this picture! Dude is my new favorite hero! Or villain... I am not sure... All I know is that I am most definitely mesmerized by his antics!


Am in Hong Kong at the moment, in the midst of a 12h layover. Just left behind this pretty face





and only time and nostalgia - or the absence of - will determine if I make my way back to the Philippine in a few months time to be with her, or in a different country...


Poker Hand


Spoiler:



Been putting in some volume at the casual cash games on Party. Not only is it a highly profitable addition to my MTT grind, but it also gives me a chance to non-chalantly single table while surfing online or make decent $$$ when I have only a little time to spare.

0.50-1$, 5 handed. I am dealt QJs UTG and continue my unrelentless aggression by making it 3$ to go. Both blinds tag along which I like for both of them hold fishy stats in the area of 47/10 and 60/22.

Flop is 782 rainbow making both villains check ; only one of them calls my 5.85$ bet. Turn is 3, only adding an inoffensive flush draw to the equation. I check back with the intention of giving up on the hand. River is the K, also a blank, but villain donks 60%... hummmm... with stats like his, I rarely imagine him going for thin value with a 7 or 8, K8 and K7 seems unlikely and not many combos of hearts got there... I make the call and smile as my Q high holds up versus his 109. Easy game

Run good all

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Old 06-27-2014, 02:39 PM   #134
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Hello all. Am sitting here in a resto/bar on the Cayman Islands which is the last stop on the 7 day Carnival cruise. And, to tell you the truth, even though some stops like Belize City and Roatan island/Honduras were interesting, I am looking forward for this cruise to finish... But considering it is my folks 45th wedding anniversary, it was the best way to please the majority of the family. Anyhow, a few picks of the trip so far



While somewhat magnificent, the overall experience is overwhelming... Too many people in a restricted area (about 1500 people on the ship) and focused mainly on non-stop consuming.



Happily, the private quarters are very comfortable, comes with a sweet balcony and a great view upon the sea.



A shipwreck at Roatan island. It is a sweet little island where I could picture one being happy living/grinding there. The same could be said about Belize City. It was also good to get to use my Spanish again, after years of being stored in an unused area of my brain...



I will be heading back to the Yukon or in a week or so, but might stop in Vegas for a few days and check out the cash games during the series... Anyhow, will come back with a longer post soon enough.

Run good all

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Old 07-02-2014, 01:54 PM   #135
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Hard Rock


Word of advice : having a previous criminal record for weed and crossing the US border are not a great combination. It will indeed give you a headache and a half for yeeeaaarrrsssss to come, even going as far as dissuading my folks of accompanying me through immigration, haha.

Finally made it to Seminole HardRock Casino and got a chance to hit the tables there for a few hours. The poker room offers 50 tables with games varying from PLO (1-2, 2-5 during weekdays, 5-10 on WE), NLH (1-2, 2-5, and 5-10 on WE), LHE (4-8), Limit O8 (4-8) . Rake is 10% and capped at 5$. Coffee and water is free, but not the alcoholic beverages. They offer 1$/h in rakeback on the card point system and have random promotions, like 6 x 200$ giveaways during the 4h I was there ; not too shabby!

Only 2 games of 2-5 were running when I got there, so I sat down at a 1-2 for 30 min before a third table of 2-5 started. But I will say this : it is safe to say that Florida's soft games reputation was not a myth


Hand 1


The table is short handed - only 6 of us - and, to my disappointment, somewhat nitty. I was hoping for loose action but have to settle for a different strategy when I notice this pattern repeat itself too often : limp, limp, raise to 12$, folds, next hand.

UTG opens for 20$ after a button Mississippi straddle to 4$ and I make the call as we take a flop HU. Not a great call vs an UTG-nits-open-raise-range, but one that I make with the intention of getting creative in position on quite a few boards... and, quite frankly, I am missing the action and want to get involved early (and make a mental note of my willingness to gamble).

Flop comes A84 rainbow. Villain bets 20$ into roughly 45$ and while we have no history together, I have played enough live 1-2 games to smell the tentativeness in his sizing... I float. Turn is a J. He takes no time in checking. I pick up 45$ and toss the chips in the center, immediately regretting my sizing as I feel 55$ would significantly increase the fold equity, especially since I have no intentions of double barreling... Regardless, villain folds and flashes a J while doing so... God I missed live poker


Hand 2


New 2-5 table with most players buying in only for 200-500$, sigh... (min 200$, max 1000$). I cover the table with my 1200$ while villain, a decent agro yet predictable reg, has 850$ on the button.

After 3 rounds and noticing that villain is abusing his raising rights on the button by attacking the limpers, I 3bet his 30$ open to 140$ with 64s from the SB. He insta-mucks. Not too much to be said about this 3bet except that, in hindsight, I really like 64 in my 3bet bluff range not only for the post-flop playability of the hand (I am still hoping he folds 70% of the time), but for his stack size.

I can easily X/shove boards that I do hit (OE, gutters with backdoor flush draw, fd, or pair + backdoor) while he will take a stab on these low card boards when checked to, as he should. If not, I can bet then shove turn or river on broadway textures with a decent fold equity, me thinks. Anyhow, even if this hand didn't go anywhere, I feel that with his stack size and with us being surrounded by much weaker players, I will get a fold from this specific player in many scenarios...


Hand 3


I have been exploitatively active and it almost feels too unbalanced meta-game wise to put in another raise from the hijack, but I am holding AKo. So I make it 25$ to go and get a call from the button, a solid enough player, if unimaginative.

Flop comes K84 and I decide to only bet 25$ into 51$, underrepping my hand and therefore possibly inducing a semi-bluff raise or a float to set up a turn X/raise (he is not deep enough, about 300-400$, so I feel we can get stacks in...). Turn is the awful, nightmarish, action killer Q. I check. He fires 40$. The Q is such a good card for his draw/K kicker range that maybe I should fold, but it feels too nitty. Plus villain looks sincerely worried, constantly looking at me, making me think that he is trying to unmask if I have the A of ... I call to see the river blank. He bets 60$. Sigh... I mean, what can I beat... K9-KJ, yes, but I think he would check back any of those hands... air, sure, but he would of most likely bet more... I make a crying call, and have to muck to his top 2... Sure I was almost getting 6 to 1 on my call, but I don't think that I am good there 18% of the time. Oh well...

Checked into going to Vegas, but would of cost me 500$+ in plane fees to change my ticket... a hefty -EV hit to take, especially that the next 1-2 months will be time to put in long hours of grinding in order to save some $ (probably 40h live-10h online/week). So will spend those 3 days in Vancouver instead, where the 2-5 game is significantly bigger/tougher than the Hard Rock one. Oh how I wish the Van 2-5 players would occasionally come in with a limp...

Run good all

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Old 07-03-2014, 11:55 AM   #136
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Note : Forgot to mention that I was holding K10s (with no backdoor flush draw) in the Hand 1 of my previous post, the one where I floated on a A dry flop and stole on the turn.

Have you guys read the 2 + 2 post by Daniel Colman (winner of 15.3 Million and a bracelet) stating his reasons for refusing an interview following his massif win in the One Drop :

http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/sh...postcount=2553

or to quote his post :

"I really don't owe anyone an explanation but Ill give one...

First off, I don't owe poker a single thing. I've been fortunate enough to benefit financially from this game, but I have played it long enough to see the ugly side of this world. It is not a game where the pros are always happy and living a fulfilling life. To have a job where you are at the mercy of variance can be insanely stressful and can lead to a lot of unhealthy habits. I would never in a million years recommend for someone to try and make it as a poker pro.

It is also not a game where the amateurs are always happy to be losing their money for the sake of entertainment. The losers lose way more money at this game then winners are winning. A lot of this is money they cant afford to lose. This is fine of course because if someone is dumb enough to gamble with money they cant afford to lose, that's their problem. Im not really buying that though. In a perfect world, markets are based on informed consumers making rational transactions. In reality sadly that's not the case, markets are based on advertising trying to play on peoples impulses and targeting their weaknesses in order for them to make irrational decisions. I get it if someone wants to go and play poker on their own free will, but I don't agree with gambling being advertised just like I don't agree with cigarettes and alcohol being advertised.

It bothers me that people care so much about poker's well being. As poker is a game that has such a net negative effect on the people playing it. Both financially and emotionally.

As for promoting myself, I feel that individual achievements should rarely be celebrated. I am not going to take part in it for others and I wouldn't want it for myself. If you wonder why our society is so infatuated by individuals and their success, and being a baller, it is not that way for no reason. It is their because it serves a clear purpose. If you get people to look up to someone and adhere to the "gain wealth, forget all but self" motto, then you can get them to ignore the social contract which is very good for power systems. Also it serves as a means of distraction to get people to not pay attention to the things that do matter.

These are just my personal views. And yes, I realize I am conflicted. I capitalize off this game that targets peoples weaknesses. I do enjoy it, I love the strategy part of it, but I do see it as a very dark game.

Happy to read any ones opinions that could convince me otherwise of my views."


Really interesting post. Candid, sincere, genuine. Really liked it, as he is shamelessly advocating a position that will most likely be loathed. That said, while I feel it remains essential to have an honest insight into our own livelihood (and conflicted emotions should be rightfully scrutinized), he fails to mention the lighter side of poker. The communal aspect (in live poker). The charity events (dude, you just one the One Drop where 11% of the 1M buy-in will help a few countries have access to clean-potable drinking water ). The competitive nature of the game. The entertainment.

Anyhow, I remain impressed with his assertion, even if I find it somewhat biased and incomplete, given he was looking to make a political stance. Here is the link to a thread about a 1.25 M challenge that Colman once accomplished :

http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/17...33n13-1305100/

peace
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Old 07-09-2014, 03:37 AM   #137
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

The Passage of Time

The thing about the passage of time, is we cannot stop it : it carries us with its flow, year by year until we come to the sudden realization that our clock is running out. How does it happen? Looking back in hindsight is of no help, for our memories are intermittent, jumping from one reference to another with nothing but blank holes in between, leaving them isolated and timeless like ellipses... Ageing simply happens.


Oh Vancouver!!! Gliding into the city on the sky train always sooths me! I have indeed grown to love this city over the past 17 years... If Montreal can be unmatched in North America for its vibrate nightlife, inviting restaurants and general romantic/uplifting aura, Vancouver, with its surrounding beaches/mountains and multi-cultural downtown core, holds an appeal of its own.



Spontaneous gathering at the Arts Gallery Plaza in Vancouver. Talk about a multi-cultural experience : Asians grooving to some salsa tunes on a ghetto blaster, haha!!! The play button was hit as I was walking by. Pretty sweet to witness couples suddenly erupting, hand in hand, and dancing away!


Got a chance to hit the Edgewater, which is located in the downtown core of Vancouver. I do prefer the Riverrock, probably because the poker room is separated from the casino and the chips are better quality... as for the games, they are about at the same difficulty level (buy-ins are different for the 2-5 though).

I have been here at the most 3 times in the past 3 years, yet I see some familiar faces around, most of them shady characters still playing the 1-2 game, cracking the same jokes at the table and carrying with them a smell that does not age well (end of rant). But one familiar face that has gone missing, is Gino Odjick.

For those of you that don't know, Gino Odjick was a hockey player for the Montreal Canadiens and mainly the Vancouver Canucks, where he played alongside Pavel Bure and defended his interests. When Gino played in the Quebec junior league, he was called "The Enforcer" as his Native American blood would make him come to the defense of his teammates in a heartbeat. Sadly, it is this same heart that is now affected by a terminal disease.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gino_Odjick

The first time I met Gino, it was our commun French Canadian background that made us struck a conversation ; he soon became a good friend. That said, I did not know that the guy was a big sports star. It did not strike me as odd that people from other tables would whisper about him or that his name would frequently pop up in conversations... So I did look kinda foolish when, after about month, I asked him why he moved to Vancouver. "Because of hockey", he answered. "Oh, junior league?", I inquired ; haha I guess that my previous years of travelling overseas had left me oblivious to the hockey scene for a few years... All the best to him in facing the upcoming finishing line, one that we will eventually all be exposed to...

Hand 1

They have changed the buy-in of the 2-5 from 500-1500$ to 200-800$ which makes sense, given the 1-2 is a 100-300$ BI. That said, there is only 1 table of 2-5 running and no 5-10... I guess one could always go to the Riverrock and play the bigger game there.

Things did not go good for yours truly as my well-timed bluffs were picked off and my value hands found no takers... So it is safe to assume that the following hands have effective stacks of 800$ (I was constantly reloading and never went north of 800$, haha ).

After 2 limpers (yes, the game is really soft), I raise to 25$ with KQo in the CO ; button and the 2 limpers put in the necessary chips. Flop comes 2310ss and outside of the middling 10, it is a quite safe flop to cbet on... yes, I do realize I will not take it down often vs 3 foes, but I have 2 overs and the intention of continuing on most 9, J, Q, K or As... All 3 of them call my 65$ bet. What Turn is a 2, making the whole table check. River brings a 6. It is once again checked to me ; I pick up 215$ and test the waters... it is looking promising until the last opponent tanks for 2 minutes, tentatively pretends to push his chips towards the middle a few times before actually making the call with 88... sigh!

Hand 2

This next one is a weird hand...

UTG makes it 25$ to go ; since our opponent has been the most active and was making big potsize bets, I am happy to call in the CO with a hand that can float many flops like A7s... but by simply calling, I let not only the button call behind, but SB seizes the opportunity to 3bet to 65$ ; UTG calls as do both I and the button (I guess, in hindsight, I prefer to take the initiative myself to 3bet in order to isolate the UTG raiser and am not a big fan of my overcall).

Flop comes the intriguing AAK. It is checked all around. On the 7 turn, the original 3 better bets 100$ into roughly 260$... I alone make the call. On a 5 river, he shoves for 435$. I insta-fold.

OK, I mean my online multi-tabling brain made a fast approximation of his 3bet range (villain is about 55 years old and previously limp-called a shove with 55, so more on a passif-fishy side) which I limit to QQ-KK-AK. Does he ever change QQ into a bluff here? I do not think so. So facing a potsize bet, I do not think I am good 33% of the time...

That said, I forgot about the spazz factor. The "I can't win anymore, so I will just shove without thinking about opponent's range or what I am repping" spazz factor. While, yes, I am happy with my quick analysis of his range, this is a live game, I should of had taken the extra 1-2 minutes and see if I could not get a good read off of him... I am slowly adapting to live poker again, which also shows in the next hand...

Hand 3

Villain has been extremely active, double-triple barreling, 3betting light, yet has shown quite an understanding of board textures. To the extent that I made the decision of taking up the open seat 2 to his left, a move I rarely make (for I am usually the alpha aggressor at the tables).

Villain opens to 15$ in MP. We are 6 handed. I look down at KJo on the button, and make the 45$ 3bet. OK. Yes I am ahead of his range and his 15$ open seems dubious compared to his usual 20-25$ opens, but why not take a flop in position? A question I do not have time to answer, as villain makes it 135$. I snap shove for 455$ and villain snap-calls. Sigh

Both of us look uncomfortable, as he asks me "do you have a pair?". I frown, say no, as he says he does not either nor hold AK... The board blanks away and his AQo scoops it.

Reality is, I was in a "double down or go home mode.". Sure a 5bet with KJo gets a decent amount of fold equity and might be slightly profitable, but is it worth it? Why cancel our position? Why play a high variance game? Because of tilt, obviously. And also because I am in a tournament-thinking-mode, where fold equity holds more value.

Am in Whitehorse right now and will be taken a minivan up to Dawson tomorrow. Here is a shot taken from the airplane today.



Run Good all

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Old 07-09-2014, 04:04 AM   #138
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

wow i dont think i could have folded hand 2. youre only losing to 1 hand and he could have played KK the same way or overplayed AQ putting you on a weaker ace since you only called the UTG preflop raise and then called the 3bet preflop removing from your hand range AA/KK/AK and AQ would be a push so hes free rolling. and if he did have AK its just a cooler. but thats just me.
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Old 07-09-2014, 04:18 AM   #139
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Oops! Edit : it was not a 7 on the turn, as I did not fill up. I had trips with 7 kicker, so turn was blank other than 7. My thinking at the time was that if I put villain on a QQ+ and AK range, I only beat QQ. I still should of taken more time though to ponder the situation...

That said, the table was excessively surprised by my snap-fold when I showed my cards, but I don't think they thought in terms of combos.
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Old 07-12-2014, 06:45 AM   #140
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Hello All. Got back to Dawson City a few days ago and after visiting friends and what not, finally got to hit a session at Diamond Tooth Gerties, the local casino here. Things did not go as planned, as the poker Gods had different intentions with my 4 BIs than I did... But since it is 3am here, sleep will be prioritized and the HHs will have to wait until the weekend is over...

That said, I wanted to point out that Zach Jiganti, AKA "Scanion" as known on 2 + 2, is presently second in chips in the Main Event. I am sure that most of you know his wonderful blog in these-here forums (and I also quoted his excellent post about "the traveler's curse" months back), but for those of you who haven't been introduced to his thread, it is well worth your time.

http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/10...equel-1366126/

Also of sweating interest in the ME, is Maria Ho, sitting in 162nd position with about an average stack. For those of yous who are not familiar with Maria Ho, well, you gotta look at these next pics in order to see how a FT with her would be more, hummm hummmm, appealing.

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3542071/r...f_=nm_ov_resph

Run Good all and back in a couple of days with some wild HHs.

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Old 07-12-2014, 05:12 PM   #141
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

I guess that I should of mentioned that we are a few hours from Day 5 in the WSOP ME, there is 241 players left, and that our Scansion, Zack Jiganti, now sits at a very respectful 3rd in chips. Unfortunately, there is no live streaming this year for the future television events...

http://www.wsop.com/tournaments/upda...1052&tid=13665

As for myself, I am off to play a live tournament today at Gerties. The buy-in is 50$+25$ (rebuy) + 25$ (rake). Yes, I do know that the rake is simply outrageous, but my ROI is too good to be denied (over 200%, even though I have not made any precise ROI calculations...) and certainly covers the exuberant fees. Rebuys are only for 30 min and add-on is 25$ thereafter, but it does lower the rake into the 13-17% range (still too big).

As for the structure, it is 8 levels of 30 min, making it deep enough for post-flop play. First place is usually in between 800-2200$, depending on the WE. I will play mainly on the weekends at the casino here (I average 30bbs/h+ in the cash game), while putting in some hours online during the week.
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Old 07-17-2014, 06:05 AM   #142
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Summertime Rolls

There is more to poker than life
Tom McEvoy


The air is familiar. So are these timeless mountains. The river flows by the town, as per usual, slowly making its way to the Arctic Ocean. Beyond the peak of the hills, the sun rises every morning, bringing its golden familiar warmth to us all. Yet something seems different... Maybe Dawson City lost some of its appeal over the years... Maybe I grew tired of this town... Maybe my youth unknowingly left me, some time ago, while thinking about life in between 2 hands...





They say home is where the heart is... Perhaps mine is located 5956 miles south-west from here, on a little island in Asia... That said, many hands remain to be played over the course of the next couple of months here...


Hand 1


The next couple of hands are mainly to illustrate the loose/wild action in this part of the world...

A couple of EP players limp as I wake up with KQ in MP. I make it 20$ to go, get 2 callers in late postion, SB shoves for 55$, one of the EP limper calls before it circles back to me. I have roughly 300$ behind and decide to iso-raise by 4betting to 115$ ; all 3 of CO, button and EP call ... oh Dawson, how I missed you!!!

Flop comes the golden J95. EP shoves for 165$ and I snap call. The poker Gods are cruel as I missed all of my 1001 outs and EP wins the hand with J8o, haha. For those of you that are surprised, this hand was played in a standard Dawsonite fashion.


Hand 2


Here is another wild HH which took place at around 12h30am, 90 min before closing time, encouraging looser action than usual...

UTG, a very loose player that has a VPP-PR of roughly 70-40 (I am estimating) opens for 15$ while UTG+1, a decent agro and frequent 3better, makes it 30$. I look down at JJ in MP and 4bet to 100$. Button calls, as do UTG and UTG1. Flop comes 995. It is checked to me. Being 450$ effective, I shove for 1k, get UTG1 to call his extra 130$ (with AK, I am guessing). Thankfully the board blanks out and I scoop it. Easy game.



That focused player in seat 8 at the far end of the pic, is yours truly!


Hand 3


This next one is vs my good buddy, with whom I have a TON of history. He is a decent reg, has certain moves, yet remains stuck within a confined way of viewing the game. He opens to 12$, I make it 30$ with JJ, he calls.

Flop is the K87. He leads out for 40$, which makes no sense : a pair of kings are pretty nutted and with effective stacks of 175$, I see him X/shoving with such a high pair (especially since my cbet frequency is north of 80%...). So I simply shove, he insta-calls with AQo and my JJ hold up. This is a great example of how some of the players that have game here, will play differently against me in spots where there FPS aggression simply does not reflect a legit story...


Hand 4

I wake up with AKo in MP and after a couple of limpers, make it 20$ to go. I get the SB and an EP to call. The dealer rolls over 578 rainbow, making our SB friend bet 50$. After the limper's fold, I insta-shove 180$ ; the SB shakes his head, grins, and tosses his cards in the muck. Easy game!

Now I know that it sounds like a borderline-maniac move from my part, but SB is the type of bluff-happy player that will bluff with air, a gutter, any pair or even A high hands and considering the apparent strength of my raise, I see him folding an A5 or K7 type of hand here. Also, because I am only 100bb deep, I am ready to take risks in order to increase my stack and have leverage power over the rest of the table.

Note : I played 2 live rebuy tournaments so far and have won both (chopped 1), so things are looking on the up and up. As far as future posts in this thread goes, I have quite a few Yukon stories that I wish to share with you guys, but it will have to wait until next week.

Run good all

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Old 07-25-2014, 01:50 AM   #143
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Higher Heights


What originally brought us to the northern edge of the globe? In this land of desolation, where humans are sparse and the Wild roams freely... Perhaps it was to runaway from the invasion of modern times... The mind-boggling 9 to 5 rat race... Or civilization's tyrannical grasp .. Whatever the reasons, it comes as no surprise that every year some pretty interesting characters make their way up to the Yukon...

You have some that set out to reproduce, step by step, the route taken by the Stampeders : a journey that saw only 30-40% of the adventurers complete it. These contemporary hikers willingly transpose themselves to a time where phones and GPS could not reach/locate them in the dead middle of nowhere ; they reverse the flow of evolution by immersing themselves into that idyllic/emblematic lost innocence provided by a journey into the wild...

Most of these escapades end up with the wanderers getting "bushed", bored, running out of provisions, or seeing Gaia putting a blunt but harmless end to their adventure. Unfortunately, this is not always the case : sometimes there is no coming back.

Our story today starts off in the summer of 2003, when 3 hippies set off on the ambitious journey of making it to the Detroit of Bering by canoe. ETA : approximately 3 months.

Sure, they had long hair and even Bigger Dreams, but were nevertheless seasoned bushmen, thus equipping themselves with the all the necessities for the trip. Problem is, even if the provisions are abundant and your aspirations plentiful, factors like the mood swings of Mother Nature remain uncontrollable... She threw a storm at them that saw both canoes tip over and with these, all their supplies : our 3 navigators were stranded at the end of their excursion, in the Bering Sea.





Maybe they were not expecting the beginning of the Arctic Ocean to be such a titanic force of nature - or more likely the lack of preparation/anticipation was part of the spiritual experience -, but our friends were stuck in the Bering ice for a few days before a local fisherman luckily found them. Their savior brought them back to shore and the 3 survivors hitchhiked a ride back to Dawson City.

All 3 of them made it back safely this time around, but unfortunately for 1 of them, he would reach the end of his journey a few years later when he went on innocent canoe joy ride with his 2 puppies. Both the dogs and canoe were located on a small island, but his corpse was found 2 weeks later, 200km up the Yukon River on an Alaskan shore...

There are numerous stories part of the Yukon folk history that end in a similar tragic death. I guess it makes this part of the world all that more intriguing, and implements the aura of the Wild wth a sort of unknown mysticism...


As far as my personal life is concerned, I have been mainly focusing on the grind, playing tennis 3-4 times/week and hanging out with friends. The WPT is coming to Manila on October 16-28,

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...type=1&theater

so trying to put aside about 10k for when I get back to the Philippines in order to sign a lease of a 2 bedroom flat, buy a desktop + monitor for the grind, a sweet motorbike and to cover buy-ins for the WPT. Hence, the next 6 weeks will be revolving around saving some $$$.


Hand of the week


The action has not been lacking on this Saturday evening, as 2 borderine-maniac-kids are bloating significantly the pots preflop. I of course enjoy the action, but it forces me to adapt by tightening up my opening range.

As per usual, there is a straddle. UTG + 1 makes it 15$ (one of the agro kids), a MP calls, and CO, a maniac older fellow that opens about 80% of his hands with a raise, 4bets to 31$. I call with 55 on the button, as does 4 other players.

Flop comes 249 rainbow. The initial UTG + 1 leads out for 16$ and gets MP to passively tag along, but CO, our older fellow, raises to 51$ (people sure do like to put in that extra 1$ grey chip here ).

Hummmmm... The original donker has huge betting tells, thus making his weak lead of 10% pot smell like weakness... The caller would of raised anything with significant value and I see the CO making this move with any A3, A5, 23, 25, 45 sort of hand... so I benefit from the bet-call-raise scenario and shove for 225$, which is now a pot-size bet.

SB goes in the tank. He is in fact the only one I was afraid off... But after 15 seconds, he lets go of the hand (even if he had read the situation right) which he later revealed to be 77. CO calls, doubles me up when the 7 on the turn and Q on the river fail to improve his hand. Crazy game

Run good all!

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Old 07-31-2014, 10:29 PM   #144
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Furor


The storm is coming... after a straddle to 5$ and 4 callers, I get dealt A9o in the SB and decide to test the waters with my 125bb stack as I squeeze 15x to 37bbs... It is the bottom of my range as far as squeezes go, but I know that I will most likely get the iso I am looking for (old loose-active-maniac fellow that is incapable of not feeding his insatiable thirst for action) and cbet/take it down on most board textures... but who am I kidding... the storm is coming... I can feel it on the surface of my skin... inside my body... it is tearing me upon... clawing its way out... it is that familiar tilting/ravaging feeling that hits any gambler that is craving action... I WANT IT, I WANT IT NOW!!!... the storm is coming.

Flop comes K28 rainbow and even though I got 3 callers, there is NO WAY the rest of my stack is not charging to the middle of the table in a heartbeat... the storm is coming. Obviously, 2 people look me up and the old man scoops the pot when his nut low pair, 23, wins it all...



Ohhhh variance Swings in life, swings in the game! And at times it becomes hard to distinguish villains from heros, demons from angels, the inside from the outside...

Speaking of swings, have been reading a sweet and short thread about a mid-highstakes PLO pro going through his worst poker downswing ever.

http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/17...-life-1355493/

It is a very entertaining little thread and only takes about 15-20 min to read. For the record though, I am not in a downswing, but broke even for my first 2 weeks here, in the Yukon, before going on a mid-4 figure upswing in the past 5 days... That said, here is a look at the weekly schedule at my local casino :


Monday Omaha Hi/lo 5-10 limit

Tuesday 100$R MT, 1-2 NLH

Wednesday 1-2 NLH

Thursday 5-10, 10-20 LHE

Friday 1-2 NLH

Saturday 100$R MTT, 1-2 NLH

Sunday 100$R MTT, 1-2 NLH


note : the casino is open from 7pm-2am on weekdays, 2pm-2am on the WE

Any game that I am making at least 50$+/h, gets my approval stamp, yet it becomes a question of preference... should I benefit from the social interaction of a live setting, or grind it online in pyjamas from the comfort of home? Yet at 70$+/h for a live game, then it becomes worthwhile to engage in the outside world.

Even in the Omaha08 5/10 limit - believe it or not -, it is a walk in the park to average 10bb+/h. It is a 10 handed game with usually 7-8 limpers every hand, so with a basic understanding of hand selection and minimal hand reading abilities, one can sleepwalk and still manage to scoop more then there generous share of the wealth.

As far as the 1-2 games go, there are only worth it on the WE when people are itching for action and dying to commit stacks with any God given pair , which makes it possible for someone like myself go on a heater 20 min heater - like I did last weekend - and scoop 1500$ my way

The MTTs are simply fun They have a seasonal point system to encourage a friendly competition, with the winner getting 325$ in rakeback, hence an encouraging incentive to keep score and accumulate the scores. I am 6/8 in cashes and most likely second in points. Contrary to what I stated in a previous post, the rake is 15$ (and not 25$), making it on average lower then 10% fees, depending on the rebuys. So this helps me further keep my ROI north of 200% and a respectable hourly.


Wild HH of the week


After a straddle and a few limps, I open KJo in the CO to 20 $ and get 5 callers. Flop is Q92, giving me a gutter and an over. It is checked to me and I decide to take a free card. Turn is 5. The biggest LAG in the game bets 40 into 120$, making it obvious he hit a small part of this board, yet not holding a monster. I decide to float, primo because I probably have direct equity to make the call, secondo because I plan on stealing on a few rundowns.

River is the A, not only putting an over, completing the flush, but hitting dead in the center of my opening-raise range. He donks another 40$, capping his range to mid-pairs at best. I through in the raise to 140$ and while he goes in the tank for 30 seconds, I realize that my sizing is off...

In a normal world, he folds 97o... In a normal world, the pot is not pushed in his direction after a suicidal-hero-call... In a normal world, people would internally criticize his play, not openly ridicule mine...

Run good all!

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Old 08-08-2014, 12:05 AM   #145
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Cycles

Variance... She is a moody one. Part of a 28 day cycle, hopping from ecstatic/unmatched highs, to subsequently pressure drop into a downward spiral... yup, she comes with a package... But hey, you gotta love her! High or low, she shows you to your favorite seat on a Friday night, and, once the first cards have been dealt, you are in for quite the ride! Variance...

After 1 limper, a MP ABC player makes it 12$ ; I make the call in the CO with KQ, as does 1 of the blinds and the limper. The 727 makes our villain cbet 7$... 7$!!! I mean, one could of not thrown me a more enticing bet to attack...

I raise to 25$, leaving myself with 175$ behind, 55$ for a turn bet and 120$ for a river shove on all non A or 7... Villain hesitantly makes the call. A rolls up on the turn. Villain checks and stares me down in the process, putting a halt to my bet-bet-shove plans, the A combos by far outnumbering the pairs combinations (of 44-66). I check it down just to see 66 scoop the pot, yet feel good about my line/original plan of bet-bet-shove : in any given hand, my chips are once again ready to find the center of the table if a highly +EV situation warrants it, thinking outside of the "cbet-take it down" boxed approach.

Variance... Since the dawn of times, she held us in her grasp... Long ago, in different edenic realms, she was the one holding the apple, the seductive voice of temptation... Variance... She carried us on quite the anthropological journey, forcing us into a partnership on this crazy journey...

After a limper (calling station) and a CO raise to 15$ (solid reg with which I like to tango), I look down at A4s and decide to get frisky by 3betting to 45$. CO has a tendency to split his range into different/yet balanced bet sizes, which has made me wrongfully attack his open in the past only to be surprised by a 4 bet and having to fold, yet I feel he is simply trying to isolate the limper here... Limper calls and CO tank-calls.

Flop comes Q83, I overshove for 175$, get 74 to call me while the CO folds JJ, easy game.


Variance. We have grown to love here, for without her, without this game, we would be a simulacra of nothing...

UTG open-shoves for 53bb with AQo, shakes his head when a MP nit overshoves with AK and a LP old man makes the call with QQ "Got to love this game" I tell myself as I see both UTG and MP bust out, making it my official 8/10 cash in the 100R MTTs... Gotta love this game called life!!!

Peace
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Old 08-14-2014, 01:47 AM   #146
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Introspection

Having been nailed to my bed for 3 days now with the flu, the only outlets offered for escaping this omniscient fever are through reminisces and projections, so indulge me a little while I transpose myself a few years back - in 2003 to be precise -, somewhere in the middle of the Prairies while on a Pan-Canadian hitchhiking trip...


The Hitchhiker's Fantasy


Early May. Somewhere on the trans-Canada highway, stranded in the middle of the Prairies...

Even my tuque is futile in protecting me from the Prairie icy wind... Maybe if I hadn't been stuck here for half a day, my thoughts wouldn't be as grey as the leaking skies... Perhaps if I hadn't left behind a 2 year relationship in Montreal with the sweetest girl to walk this earth, my brain wouldn't be clogged with darkness... Or if I had more than 50$ to my name and a better feel for what the future holds, this intrusive emptiness might let me be...


But when is the last time we actually got what we wanted in this God-forsaken life If you want something, you reach out and grab it! It is as simple as that! So with the determination in mind to defy the gods, destiny and the absurd irony that arises from it all, I start dancing by the side of the road with my thumb in the air and a big smirk on my face Thankfully it does not go unnoticed, as 2 women heading to Edmonton pull over and embark me on the 6h drive. Sweet!!!

They are coming back from a few days of coke binging in Saskatoon, so the sight of a dancing Frenchman by the side of the road can only but put a smile on their faces ; as far as I am concerned, I only have eyes for the passenger girl as the memories of the Montreal girl mysteriously fades away...

She is an interesting one, to say the least. India, drugs, meditation and other interesting subjects all get thrown into the conversation as time flies by as fast as the unfolding road... the Prairies don't seem as grey as it did a couple of hours ago... Maybe it is the hint of blue in her eyes that has instilled some light into this cloudy day... Or perhaps it is the subsequent massage at her place in Edmonton, the kisses, or her inner-desires that open up in between her legs, soothing our mutual desire to expand, to dominate, to conquer the world...

Sure I end up back on the road the next morning, yet a permanent smirk settles itself on my face as I now hold the bragging rights to the hitchhiker's dream



Well, there is only 4 weeks left to my stop here, in the Yukon, before I set sail towards new horizons in Palawan, Philippines. But first, a look at the remaining tournaments before the end of the summer season.

- August 24, 400$ + 50$ + 25$ Bounty tournament.

The bounty is minuscule in proportion to the buy-in - to say the least -, yet is compensated by a generous rake (5.3%) and a hyper soft field. 30 minute blind levels, 200bbs to start off.

- September 5, 200$ + 35$ buy-in 50$R for 2h, 50$ add on.

This tournament is the first one of White Ram tournaments, which caps off the summer season with about a hundred and some Yukon, Alaskan and Vancouver player coming up for the events. The tournaments by themselves are quite appealing for their top heavy payouts and soft fields, but one could make a decent WE simply by grinding the juicy cash games.

The structure for this MTT is quite lame, as one needs to get a rush within the first 3 hours in order to get a deep run. Rake 35$, which includes a buffet.

- September 6-7, 300$ + 40$ buy-in, 100$R, 100$ add on after 2h

This main event is a 2 day event, with the final 2 tables coming back the next day. The structure is deep enough where one should be able to have enough room to manoeuvre through all the subsequent levels. First place should be close to 25k in this 120 player capped event.

- September 8, 500$ + 25$ FO

A bit of a fast structure with 30 blind levels and 200bbs to start off, but management added this Monday tournament to please the appetite of the late leavers, enticing on average 70-80 runners to participate every year.

As far as my summer savings go, I am right on schedule, which will also permit me to take shots in WPT and APTs this coming winter.

Run good all

Last edited by Dubnjoy000; 08-14-2014 at 02:17 AM.
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:11 AM   #147
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

I like to visit these type of western prairie card rooms ever since a short stay in Cripple Creek, must be some wild Fri and Sat nights up there when you get tourists and people cutting loose for the weekend in a remote area. Nice pictures too, gl at WPT and APT should be a good trip win or lose.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:22 AM   #148
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Quote:
Originally Posted by HankTheBank View Post
I like to visit these type of western prairie card rooms ever since a short stay in Cripple Creek, must be some wild Fri and Sat nights up there when you get tourists and people cutting loose for the weekend in a remote area. Nice pictures too, gl at WPT and APT should be a good trip win or lose.
Yeah, the action can be wild on a Friday or a Saturday evening Interestingly, the switch from limit to no limit only happened about 5 years ago in these northern parts, so most players have only had half of decade of 30 hands/hour to adapt to a different beast. Some of them have made the most of it and become decent sharks (in these shallow waters), while others have remain passively behind...

As far as I am concerned, I am very comfortably overrolled for such a game, so to show up with 8BIs in my pocket and to proceed to crush has become the norm....

I have been enjoying your thread as well Hank, gl on your adventures!!! One question though : you do not feel slightly paranoid carrying 10k+ of live roll on your camping/biking journey?

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Old 08-15-2014, 11:00 AM   #149
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Periodically I drop off excess money at Wells Fargo or PNC so as to minimize my exposure, but yeh I do get paranoid and in the future think I will look to play much smaller games just to avoid having that problem. Also good thing to carry a dummy wallet you can hand someone with a few bucks in case of a robbery. Also keeping $100's in the undies can be a good way to pad your package and hide bankroll.
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:37 AM   #150
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Sad news in these northern parts, as a fellow Dawsonite took his own life... Dawson is a little town of 1500, so whenever a tragedy like this happens, a little bit of us dies as well as the whole town cannot but remain collectively shaken by such an event...



They found Barry's body in his boat, with a bullet in his head

I did not know well Barry, but do have a small story to share though... I was knocking down a drink at the bar when Sultan of Swings by Dire Straits was playing. Barry turned to me and told me about that time, in the 70s, when that song was rocking in his car of his that he was riding at full throll with some friends. They had just picked up a hitchhiker, lit up a doobie and were testing the limits of freedom at high speed. A cop started chasing them, which only contributed to that feeling of pure freedom, haha.

When Barry was telling me this story, he was trying his best to put on the Rock N Roll-rebellious-above-all-attitude, and you could also tell that a part of him - at least in that moment -, wanted to be young forever... RIP Barry.


A buddy-gold-miner of mine just posted a video on you-tube about a sneaky black bear that stole a bath in a tire that he had just made for himself. Check it out, it is well worth the 4 minute watch.

http://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3...zpQtlcigOW&s=1

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