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Old 01-28-2014, 10:53 PM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Australia
Posts: 7
My Story

This is a short detailed biography of my life and how I was introduced to poker. Thank you for taking the time to read, I hope you enjoy.
The number one piece of advice I can give any poker player who is looking to improve their game, read. Read, read, read, and read some more, read until you can't read no more. This is one of the secrets to success. There is so much information in poker books written by professional poker players, it would literally take a lifetime to read. I've read over 180 poker books, and each book brings new information that has helped me improve my game.

There are secrets in poker, secrets the pro's don't talk about. They only write about them, if you don't read it, you will never know it. I won my very first poker tournament at the age of 18 at my local poker league the day after I finished reading Doyle Brunson's Super System: A Course in Power Poker. I used many of the strategies Doyle wrote about in his book. The tournament had 19 tables, each table had 8 players, a total of 152 poker enthusiasts registered, but like most tournaments, the total amount of actual players was less than the registered players.

We started with a chip stack of $5000 and the blinds began at $25/$50 and increased every 10 minutes. The tournament was free to enter and the cash prize was $50. The last remaining 8 players to reach the final table were all awarded with a qualifying ticket that guaranteed a seat into a tournament in which only the top 8 players from each month could enter.

I had two weeks to prepare for the tournament and I had no idea what to do or how to do it. I had played in many small poker tournaments but didn't have the skill to successfully win them. I always got caught up playing bad hands, A5o, A7o and A9o were the main cards that lost me hundreds of hands. I would hit an Ace and always think I had the best hand, but when the showdown was revealed I was being out kicked or losing to a very wide range of hands, hands I thought were weaker than mine, which in fact held much more value than I could have ever expected.

It wasn't until a good mate of mine who I regularly played poker with let me in on a bit of a secret. He was mentioning in conversation things like pot odds, outs, table presence, equity, position, value bets, implied odds, draws, under the gun, on the button, out of position, variance, and he was calling people NIT, LAG,TAG and fish which was overwhelmingly confusing. It seemed like no matter who he played against he was beating them, I could not figure out how he was doing it. I put him on the spot and demanded he tell me wtf was going on and why he was so good, I was jealous, I wanted to be good like him, I wanted to know what he knew, I begged him to tell me.

He laughed at me, for several minutes. He pulled out a book and he said read this, it's a poker book. It'll teach you how to beat 90% of players, no matter how good they think they are. I thought it was a joke, I thought he was having a lend of me and as we say in Australia "taking the piss" He was dead serious and he said I could have the book, "keep it, read it and learn from it", he said. The book had no author name, no introduction and no page numbers. It was hand written and looked dirty and smelt like alcohol and tobacco.

I thought he was insane, I asked him, what is this, he replied "My diary mate" I could not stop laughing, I was laughing so much I actually insulted him and offended him, he forced the book out of my hands and punched me in the head, pretty hard too, that's when I realised whatever was written in that book he took very, very seriously. I apologised to him and he lectured me about the value of the content within the book, I made reference several times it was a diary not a book, he was not impressed. We had both had several drinks and he decided to call it a night. He insisted I read the book when sober, so that's exactly what I did.

I read his diary from cover to cover, 5 times, give or take, I lost count. It seemed like the more I read the more I understood new things, I was learning things I never even knew existed, it opened my eyes to a whole new level of thinking, a level of thinking I had no idea even existed, a level of thinking that separated good players from bad players. It was a gold mine of information, I felt like a millionaire reading the words he had written.

A week had passed and early one morning I was woken by my mother, I was 18 and I still lived at home, I didn't know it at the time, but that was the last time I would ever sleep in the house I grew up in. My mother told me I had a visitor, it was my mate, he wanted his diary back, I called him an Indian giver and we joked around before leaving the house. He told me he had big plans for the weekend and we'd make a lot of money playing poker, I didn't realise it at the time, but I was about to find out what real poker was all about.

I asked him what we were doing and he told me "We're going to a casino" The legal age to gamble and drink in Australia is 18, so I did what any responsible adult would do, I withdrew all of my savings and headed to the casino. We sat down at a cash table, the minimum blinds at this casino were $2.50/$5 and a minimum buy in of $50 I had 20 buy ins, just like the diary suggested I have, which at the time was my entire life savings.

I was afraid to lose my money, my mate reassured me and made a deal, he said, "if you lose your $1,000 I'll give you $1,000, but ONLY if you follow everything you have read in the book" I agreed. It didn't take long before I started to realise players were coming onto our table with chips and leaving with no chips, we would sit and drink while laughing and talking to girls. Everyone seemed to be attracted to us, it was like we were drawing them in, we had a sense of confidence and it was showing on the poker table but everyone seemed to be totally oblivious to it. We would play our weak hands strong and our strong hand even stronger, we didn't just feel invincible, we were invincible.

Eventually the casino security kicked us out for being intoxicated, we cashed in our chips and made an impressive profit of $1,300 between us. I was ahead $400 while my mate had cleaned up $900, it was obvious he was still much more advanced than I was, but from reading just one book about poker, I had improved my game much more than I could have ever anticipated. The book taught me how to bet correctly, how to read the board, how to read other players, pot control, position, aggression and submission. It taught me how to fold in tight situations, value betting, pot odds, implied odds, % to hit draws the list goes on and on and on. For the first time in my life I truly understood the value of my cards and how to correctly encourage my opponents to make bad decisions based on information I have gathered.

I understood why my A5o, A7o and A9o were losing so much, they are terrible hands in most positions, and they should of been folded, plain and simple. They can be beaten by a wide range of hands especially when up against an experienced player.

As time passed, I was reading more and more poker books, and implementing betting strategies into my game, I came to the understanding that there is a winning formula to playing poker. This became my obsession, I wanted to know everything about poker, and the more I was reading the more I started to realise, I would never know everything about poker. I would never learn everything, the information and secrets written in poker books was literally endless. I quit my job, I dropped out of uni and stared studying mathematics alongside my developing poker career.

I was introduced to man by the name of 'BINGO' an associate of my father who later became heavily involved in an illegal gambling ring in the Western suburbs of Sydney, Australia. My father was a strange man, he would talk in riddles and somehow assume someday I would decipher the true meaning behind his cryptic codes, I never did.

I was heavily active in private illegal cash games in the heavily drug infested criminal suburbs of Western Sydney. Drugs, weapons and money seemed to be the norm in the circle of men I associated with when gambling. It was a dangerous, stand-over environment, and the winners didn't always end up taking their money home with them. I knew I was getting myself into something serious and I needed to get out before I ended up dead.

I seized all communications with my father and his drug dealing psychotic associate BINGO, I decided to take my poker into a new direction and deposited $5,000 into my bank account and started grinding the low stakes cash games in the various casino's that supported No Limit Hold'em.

I found a girlfriend and within the first year of playing poker professionally I placed a deposit payment and purchased my own house, at the age of 19 I was arrested for illegal gambling and fined $4,300, my past association with BINGO had caught up on me and the hard heavy fist of the law punched me directly in the face. I received 100 hours community service and no criminal charges were filed, my property was seized due to an investigation related to illegal gambling but was later returned to me. I was not allowed to legally gamble for 12 months and I had to stay 500 meters from any casino, it was a tough penalty for someone so passionate about poker.

I spent that 12 months extensively studying poker books from some of the greatest poker minds, I was tempted to take my poker back into the illegal underground market but after having several death threats and suspicious activity around my place of residence, I decided to pack up shop and relocate to a more secure neighborhood, leaving my illegal gambling days behind me forever.

I have a library of over 300 poker books, each day I still learn something new, each book teaches me new techniques, new secrets, new strategies, new levels of thinking and new ways to better my poker skills. There is one thing all great poker players have in common, they all read poker books.

I never participated in the tournament ticket I received, I traded it for a joint and a warm beer on a cold winter night.

Thank you for reading a short biography on my life, hope you enjoyed.
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Old 01-29-2014, 02:24 PM   #2
Sloppy Joe
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Mid TN
Posts: 558
Re: My Story

That's an incredible story. I enjoyed reading it. I hope you will post more.
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