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Old 01-22-2014, 11:05 PM   #1
EvYoung92
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(Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Note: Though it is true, the intro was originally written as a creative writing assignment so that is the reason for the chapter format and slight embellishment. I have however changed some things to suit 2+2 a bit better.

Chapter 1: A Shot in the Dark

I never would've imaged while grinding 4NL on the internet and celebrating every time I was fortunate enough to win a $12 "monster pot" that I would ever witness a game with a $40 big blind... But now I'm sitting at one.

Explaining how I made my way here is quite the story, but explaining why nearly half my bankroll is on the table will prove much more difficult. These details, however, will be saved for later. For now, I will focus on the AJ4 flop that lies in front of me. My only opponent in the hand checks to me and I fire $180 into ~300. He quickly folds and I slide my KQ into the muck and scoop up what I would normally consider a big pot. Just two hands later I find my self on the button with JT. Two players limp and I make it 200, both limpers call and I get a favorable 982x flop. Both players check and I bet 380 into 660. The first limper folds but the other one does something unexpected, he announces raise and pushes 1200 into the pot. Without hesitation I announce all in and edge my neat stack of ~4500 into the middle. He quickly calls, casually pushing his chips into the middle as if this amount of money had little value to him. I have him covered but not by much. At this point my heart begins to pound, this is a rush I haven't experienced since my first $100 pot over 2 yeas ago. He stalls and makes me flip first then turns over his 22 and my heart sinks as I realize I am the underdog. Luckily I still have what my buddy Mike would call "outs 4 days". Turn: J, useless. River A and before I know it I'm left with a handful of chips worth a grand total of $200.

Still in shock from the massive loss I check my hole cards, black AT, I go all in for my last $200 and get a lone caller in the BB who confidently flips over AQ I sit there silent and motionless as the AJT43 board rolls out and I quickly cash out the measly $420. I remember the guy having the nerve to complain but I can't remember the exact words. As I pocket my cash and slink toward the door Taylor timidly asks,"you comin' back man?" I nod and slowly make my way to my car, still in utter disbelief. I have little to no recollection of the long drive back but I do know that I didn't even make it back out of my room before crashing face first into my pillow, remaining bankroll in hand.
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Old 01-22-2014, 11:43 PM   #2
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Chapter 2: Flashback

Well I guess I have some explaining to do... You might be wondering how a 20 year old 1/2 reg ended up playing way out of stakes with nearly half his bankroll on the line, or maybe you just figured he's reckless idiot and you don't really care. Either way that story is right here so feel free to read it or skip right through to the next part.

My friend Taylor was once a small time grinder like me. For about a year years I played with him at a local 1/1and at that time I had only started playing live and had a laughable $300 roll. Taylor, however, had been crushing these local soft games for years and as soon as he reached a 5K roll his ambition led him to take a shot, and when I say shot I mean he put his whole bankroll on the line in one big game. (Yeah perhaps more reckless then ambitious but who am I to talk?) Well Taylor played ~7 hours and turned his 5K roll into around 18K and never looked back. Apparently his roll is currently approaching 100K and the only time I ever see him play anymore is 5/10 which I watch from the lowly fish infested pond that is 2/2. But I never forgot that not so long ago we both shared a table at the local 1/1 game.

Well fast forward about a year and my roll had been growing at a solid rate. I had a handful of poker buddies who also tracked their results, discussed hands and talked strategy but none seemed to have the consistent success that I showed. I rarely had consecutive losing sessions and when the downswings did arrive,they were quickly swallowed up by profit. I eventually forgot what tilt felt like and my confidence grew and grew and perhaps, in the end, led to my downfall.

It didnt take long for me to reach 5K but once i did Taylor constantly advised me to follow in his footsteps and put my roll on the line saying,"It was the absolute best decision I have ever made." I continued refusing his offers and merely observing his success as his good nights were exponentially better than my best ones. Eventually after one of his particularly good sessions I finally promised that once my roll reached 10K I would accompany him to that juicy high stakes game. This, as you already know turned out to be a big mistake, but an even bigger lesson.
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Old 01-22-2014, 11:59 PM   #3
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

It sounds interesting so far. I look forward to reading the rest of your story.
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Old 01-23-2014, 12:09 AM   #4
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Chapter 3: Rock Bottom

I woke up laying in the remainder of my bankroll which I likely salvaged when I decided not to return to the big game. I collect my cash and reorganize it back into my bankroll safe which is now empty for the first time since I bought it. The current total amounts to $4,458 not including the $475 still owed to me by the local scumbag dealer (its been nearly a year!) and the $45 I still have online that I mess as doing with from time to time. I make my way to the shower which is how I cope with hangovers whether they come from alcohol or tilt. I stand in the shower imagining other possible outcomes regarding the previous night. I visualize an A peeling out on the river and shipping a pot I would never forget. Eventually my imagination fades and I'm left with reality as well as quite the head rush as I've been standing in a scorching hot shower for who knows how long. This was the beginning of a rough month off of poker that I used to plan my next action and decide whether I had a future with poker or not.

For weeks on end I contemplated quitting but eventually I decided that letting the knowledge I had built up go to waste would be unacceptable. My mind was finally set, I had to mount a comeback.
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Old 01-23-2014, 12:44 AM   #5
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Introductions, Goals, and the Important Stuff
Happy to finally be done with the storytelling portion of this thread, now its time to introduce myself, set some goals, and then get onto the important stuff, the hand posting!

I am Eric and I'm currently a 21 year old junior in college, I'm into sports, movies, strategy games and maybe even writing, who knows. Like I said i wrote this out originally as a creative writing assignment both because it would be easy to tell my own story and because in felt it was a neat story on a topic i enjoyed and could comfortably write about. Well, since then I've decided to turn it into a goal oriented blog and use it as a tool to motivate me and encourage my success. This is especially important as motivation will be hard to come by while following a path I've previously conquered.

Goals:
regain my 10K bankroll playing 1/1, 2/2, and 2/5 occasionally
improve as a player through reviewing my own play and hopefully by using advice of others as well
writing my first blog and hopefully keeping it entertaining but still applicable and relevant to achieving my goals.

I play nearly daily so updates should be frequent. Questions, Comments, Advice, Concerns or Encouragement are always always appreciated. Ive recorded every session played for the last couple years but was planning on starting with a handful of sessions from the past week, tomorrow and from there on being as current as possible.

Wish you all run good both in poker and in life.

-Eric
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Old 01-23-2014, 10:43 AM   #6
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Subbed. GL.
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Old 01-23-2014, 08:00 PM   #7
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Quick update

Was gonna post hands from the past week since its been a crazy (but successful one) but I just got home and I don't want to be too late to the Tuesday/Thursday 7 oclocker. Its a 1/2 with great country style food and average stacks of ~300. Its mostly old dudes but somehow none of them are very tight. Out of time but wish me luck!
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Old 01-23-2014, 08:00 PM   #8
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Nice story. I'm curious, what grade did you receive in your creative writing class?
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Old 01-24-2014, 02:32 PM   #9
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Quote:
Originally Posted by PokerFiend4LYFE View Post
Subbed. GL.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sloppy Joe View Post
Nice story. I'm curious, what grade did you receive in your creative writing class?
Thanks, I squeaked out an A. Do you guys like the chapter and story format? It will be hard to maintain with such a high volume of significant hands like last night but I can try to keep that up. Suggestions appreciated.
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Old 01-24-2014, 03:32 PM   #10
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Its not a cooler...
1/23/14 Session

I arrive to the scene, a creepy looking farmhouse down an old dirt road, a bit late so thegame is already in full swing. I hop in seat 1 making it 10 handed which is common here.
Seat info
Spoiler:

I am fortunate enough to start on the btn since I took the spot of another player.
Pick up 98 on btn, seat 4 limos utg and seat 8 makes it 5 (generally just a pot builder here). As tempted as I was to play that pretty red hand I fold and of course the flop comes out 99T ch, ch, Turn: Q (If the Jcomes out on the river I'm gonna puke) ch, bet 20, call, River: 8 (Seriously?) Seat 4 leads out, reraise, seat for shoves and gets snapped! TT vs T9. What a first hand I really dodged a bullet there!
Seat 8 sighs after loosing most of his stack and says, "what a cooler" Immediately the fish to my left starts babbling about how its technically not a cooler because there were at least 4 hands that could beat him then starts explaining to players individually that a cooler is only when you lose to the only hand that can beat you.
His incessant explaining finally ended 2 hands later when I pick up JJ in the HJ. 1 player limps and I make it 8, seat 3(btn), seat 5(BB) and limper call. ($33) 784 ch, seat 10 makes it 10, I raise to 23, seat 3 thinks and folds and the other 2 call, (~$100) 7ch ch I bet 52 call fold. ($205) 5 and seat 5 shoves, I snap fold and he shows 6. Tough start but I kept composure.

A round goes by and I pick up KQo twice in a row and lose small lots, followed by 77 which I bet down on 442T6 and lose to fishy seat 2. I'm left with $80 and add on $100.

I now move to seat 6, the perfect seat, got two of the tighter players to my left and two of the most involved players to my right.

I pick up JJ on btn soon after and raise getting 3 callers, my cbet of 25 takes it down on AK2 that always feels good.

I lose with 99 twice in a row one vs AA where he butchered it and saved me $.

I get AQ utg next. I make it 12 and get 3 callers btn sub and bb. ($48) JT8ss. Ch ch, now I like to check in these spots where the board texture hits a lot of opponent hands, I ch, btn ch. 8 ch seat 5 bets 10 I call, fold, seat 4 calls, ($78) 7 ch ch, I bet $35 and they both fold.

-Lost a fairly big AK v A9 hand to 2pair and am now playing short stacked with ~95.

I raise 12 with A7 in LP and get raised by seat 8 to 30. Superfish in seat 2 calls and I decide to call (not normally something I do but in short stack and bullying on many flops) ($~90) 823x. Ch, I ch, raiser bets 25, fold, I shove and he folds pretty quickly.

A couple hands later I get KQo seat 2 makes it 7, I call, seat 8 raises to 25 fish calls I call. (~75)JT4x I check, seat 8 bets 15, seat 2 calls, I shove (~105) they both fold. Sounded a lot like the last hand huh?

Well because of those two spots I'm able to escape a rough session up 5 bucks.these night are as important as any! That was a lot of typing so I may adjust the format for next time, suggestions are welcome, GL all in your playing!
This was a lot of typing and so I'm gonna work on the format a bit, as always suggestions are appreciated, GL in your poker adventures!
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Old 01-25-2014, 08:45 AM   #11
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Quote:
Originally Posted by EvYoung92 View Post
Thanks, I squeaked out an A. Do you guys like the chapter and story format? It will be hard to maintain with such a high volume of significant hands like last night but I can try to keep that up. Suggestions appreciated.
Congratulations on the A. You deserve it. As far as format, it's your blog, go with whatever is most comfortable for you.
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Old 01-27-2014, 01:08 AM   #12
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

It all comes down to one big hand...

The river comes a K making the board J843Kand turning my ATo into the nuts in a bloated pot. My opponent leads for 50 and I shove my 210 on top... He tanks hard and I sit there calmly staring at the board, it began to take so long I began to grow bored, he must have the J or Q if he's thinking this long, I just hope he finds a call! I check my phone for the time, its 1:27, I'm exhausted and i already called my round. I just cant wait to head home and get some sleep, theres nothing like diving into bed after tripling or even quadrupling your buy in. I take a sip of my water then check my holecards .... ****.... AT how could I have made this mistake... my heart rate does a 180 and now though I probably appear composed on the outside, inside I am a complete wreck. Ive had nightmares about moments like this, the dealer mucking my cards while I'm all in or my hole cards changing when i get to showdown. Unfortunately now I feel like I am living one of these nightmares.... Please fold.....

Before I give the result of that horrific experience I want to explain the significance of this particular hand (and build some suspense of course). Not only was this pot big (over 600 if he called) but it determined whether I went on a poker trip for the weekend. I previously promised my buddy Sam that if I could pull off a $100 profit or more that night that I would accompany him and others to florida for 2/5, 1/2 and a $50,000 guaranteed tournament. So for more reasons than the money alone that thursday was an important night in my mind.

And I got off to a hell of a start... I play my first hand in the BB with QJ a couple of limps then i check, were ~6 handed. Flop 9T4x, hell yeah.. I bet 12 into 13, 1 caller. 8 on the turn and I bet 23 and the villain shoves for 120 total. I snap of course and I'm up against A7, river Q. Off to quite the start. I fold for a couple rounds and then pick up AQ on the btn and make out 12 over 4 limpers, the old guy in the SB calls followed by the horde of limpers. KJ5 It checks to me and I bet 45 into ~75 and instantly the old guy shoves for 50 more, it folds to me and I call expecting to see 2 pair or a set, but not a set of kings.... Live poker baffles me at times. I turn the 9 and scoop the pot, ya gotta love heaters! I continued playing awesome poker including making nice laydowns with AA and QQ. I later raised with AA in a straddled pot and value bet a guy all the way down on KKKT3, he had AJ.

Everything was going right but then we get too that one hand, the hand that decides if all that running good left me with multiple buy ins, a trip to Florida, and a
tournament ticket or just a feeling of stupidity, a weekend at home, and probably a sleepless night. Maybe it wasn't the longest tank of all time, maybe im overexaggerating a bit (I probably am) but I'm being dead serious when I say it felt like a full 15 minutes before he finally groaned and announced "I call." I table my AT and he shows 55.... I'm completely stunned but ecstatic. The outgoing old dude to his right says "what da hell did you call with that for?" The guy claimed he thought I was completely bluffing, I'll take it! Up over $600 for the night I leave happy and ready for as good night sleep, Florida here I come!!
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Old 01-27-2014, 09:01 AM   #13
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

That was quite a hand and I love the way you told the story.
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Old 02-01-2014, 02:14 AM   #14
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Florida Poker room and a heads up battle with an asian whale
So me, sam and clay head to Florida for a $200 tournament and the cash games that followed. I make a decent run but bust about halfway through with AQ v JJ where we got it all in pre. I quickly head to the 2/2 table and immediately make ~220 in a few hands, it feels great to get my buy in right back without a sweat! I end up folding a J-high flush wherever I bet and get called, then another shoves and the caller snap calls before I can act. I finally fold, the shover had a straight and the caller had the naked Ac.. FFS.I cash out for awhile.
As the night continues I am constantly loaning Sam money, he must've lost everything he brought + the 200 I already gave him. I end up getting back on the tables at an absolute dream table. This one European fish is just dumping chips, he's calling all raises pre and I just watched him call a guy all the way down with 44 on A3Q2J, he called 1/2 pot on the river!!! I'm licking my chops as he adds on 100 more, cluelessly checks his whole cards, then limps utg. 2 more limps then i look down at big slick and make it 15 knowing the fish will call, he does and we see an AT3r flop. He checks and I bet 18 into ~35, he snaps, 4x he checks I bet 55 into 70ish he calls 6x and he checks again, I put him all in and he snaps and shows TT wowwww the one time... Unfortunately I was unable to buy back in because sam had gone full degen moving up to 2/5 and borrowing 600 from me already. I walk over and notice he has about 150 in front of him. Damn.....
Then I see a buddy I used to play 1/1 with when I first started, apparently he's been doing great and is the chip leader in that $200 buy in tourney! He quickly spots me 200 and I am able to hop right back into that juicy 2/2. I doesn't go great for me but I manage to cash out 160 at the end of the day, -$220 for the short trip but it was fun and seeing how bad my buddy did I cannot complain.

I feel like an addict as i return home, shower, and sit right back at the local 1/1 that very night, didn't write down any hands but me and the local Asian loose aggressive whale end up cleaning house so fast that we end up playing a couple hours of heads up. a couple of bluff catches and value bets later and I come out on top, +190.
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Old 02-07-2014, 08:22 AM   #15
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Re: (Hopefully) The Story of a Live Grinder's Comeback

Big pots and big news
Well no posts for awhile but that's only because its been absolutely an insane month of poker here's the summary with my last 5 sessions, some interesting hands included, and some big news near the end!!

1/30/14, 1-2: I start out losing a fairly big hand with JJ on AAA 6J, I played pretty aggressively and lose to a normally tight player who shows up with A6 from the btn. I add 100 to my $300 buy in and then to make matters more frustrating I flop top set with KK in position and get nothing. Next I win a pretty big AK hand on KJ3ss Qh 9c I double barrel and check river to induce a bluff from FDs but he checks back with AQ back up to even! Then I decide to raise from LP with A9hh, pretty uncharacteristic of me but I've really been working hard lately on opening up my game (I started as a robotic online nit). Btn calls and bb calls, flop comes AQ2r, I bet 11 into 25 and get 1 call, 3c I check he bets 30 and I call planning to check-fold most rivers, 9c on river and I bet 65, he calls (actually had 75 but said call so it was too late) He had AKcc for the running club nuts! Damn that one hurt, he basically 1 outed me as far as getting further value goes. Perhaps a poor turn call though and maybe I got what I deserved. I double up with AA then get in a tough spot with them where I fold turn to nit check-raise on JJ52 and he showed 55. I make a nice bluff with KTdd on 937 TJ where I was heads up and played tricky vs thinking player. I checked flop behind, he bet 10 on turn and I raised to 25 and he called, he checked when the J came and I bet 40 and he folded. Of course soon enough we get to 5 handed, my F'ing kryptonite... I always seem to get destroyed when specifically 5 handed. Im even when we start but of course within 2 rotations I'm down 250 because I flop 2 pair with AT and a guy who seemed to be tilting open shoved with QJ for the nuts... I leave down 250.

1/30/14: I return for my vengence and money two days later as prepared as ever. I start of down a bit but quickly build my stack thanks to bluffing good turns and rivers and set mine and miss the following: 55,44,55,55,66,44,66,55,22. Then I make about 70 with KK on 995 J8 where I check behind river for some stupid reason. I get KK again and win a miracle hand, $25 preflop goes 4 ways and I'm good on AT3 where flop checks through I bet turn brick and get 1 call then I bet river brick and he folds JJ. I lose a hand v a short stack on 445ccs with AQss v 33. Then comes the hand that defines the night. In get JThh in Mp and make it 10... I get 7 calls... Flop is JTTcc checks to me and ibet 25, really want light calls here obv. I get 3 calls. If I got to summon a card the 3c on the turn may have been a frontrunner. Ch ch I bet 55 and get 1 call and 1 all in for 14 more, we both call. Pot 380. River is a miracle 3s and I shove all in for 250. Villain BTW is a degen woman who I always see buying in for 20 and 40 at the other games and donking it off quick, this time however she has 700 in front thanks to some suckouts and coolers (notably set v top 2 and KK v AA where the K flopped) She thinks and folds QT face up. This is absurd at this game and especially by this V. Unfortunately I had to show down and cause everyone to stop bashing her and begin worshipping her. Oh well, thanks to this one hand I'm up 200 and Im happy.
More to come.... .(all the best stuff, trust me)
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