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Cool poker historie

Forfatter: AlexAkiller
Kategori: Poker - annet
Medlem siden 02/02-2012
AlexAkiller Postet 16. Oktober 2012 15:47
minne meg litt om bloggen til Thomas"superf1sh"

My poker story actually starts several months before I started playing the game. Skip to the third paragraph if you don't want to hear how I ended up starting to play. In fall of 2002 I turned 40 years old and found myself with some "extra" money. I lived close to a large Indian casino in Auburn, WA. The Muckleshoot. I know you can't beat the house. I'm not patient enough for Blackjack, never cared to learn basic strategy let alone a counting system and find it boring. I lost a few hundred, maybe more playing roulette-- American roulette has a house edge of over 5%-- and started researching a better game to play. Craps has some good bets but moves so fast and it was hard to learn it and make the proper plays. I tried Baccarat, but the Muckleshoot keeps the bets for ties so house advantage is huge again. That's when I found on line casinos. It was the beginning of 2003 by then.
On line casino bonuses varied greatly as they do now, but in 2003 some were great deals. None are today. My first weekend playing I deposited a hundred each on a couple sites I think. Hit a jackpot on a slot machine for something like $2,000. Then I had to learn about play through requirements. You had to play so many times your deposit in order to cash out. Anyway, I ended up with some extra money again. Then one night I was sitting with a friend watching World Poker Tour on television: "These guys are REAL gamblers." I remember telling him. I didn't yet know that there was a buy-in and they weren't really betting half a million dollars when they bet half a million chips. I think it was 2nd or 3rd week ever and Phil Ivey was staring people down at the final table for the second week in a row. Man it looked cool. I had to learn how to play! This was also the year Chris Moneymaker won the main event.
For some reason I remember the date. May 28, 2003. I played some play money tables to get the feel. Moved to cash not long after. I fully expected to lose for several months trying to learn how to play. I bought "Super System" by Doyle Brunson, which was considered the best book about poker at the time. I played, studied, studied, played. Tried to incorporate what I learned into my play. Discovered STTs and started playing them instead of cash games. I played on Prima Poker, which is Microgaming now. They started doing beta tests of MTTs around August that year.They didn't have MTTs before then! I remember making a final table out of 1000 entrants and thought that was pretty good for a rookie. In September they started running MTTs. I made FT 3 of my first 5 MTTs and was, of course, hooked on them from then on. I was down a little over $1000 by then. It started to turn that month and I started winning every month. Not a lot, but ahead every month. I never expected to find something I enjoy as much as poker at 40 years old. I felt it was a great find for me.
December of that year I lost my job. I had just bought a house so it really sucked. While learning poker I had continued to "bonus hunt" the on line casinos and won around $18,000 for the year. I had invested most of it so wasn't in trouble immediately. In 2004 I mixed in some cash games again and did well at them also. I was still winning consistently but not enough to support myself, hell, I'd only played a few months! I got another job that Spring which didn't pay as well and I didn't like the company much. The end of May that month my first big score came. I entered a satellite to a bigger satellite for $11. Moved on to a $530 SAT that sent the top 2 all expenses paid to Dublin-- a $12,000 package-- for the World Poker Championship. I got second and won the trip! I drove over to my best friend's house and could hardly speak I was so excited. I had only been at my new job a couple months, not long enough to take a week off, so I just quit. I worked in Pest Control and it was the beginning of summer. I could always get another job while the bugs are busy in summertime. I lived near Seattle so they were busier when it was warmer.
At the Dublin airport while I was waiting for my baggage I saw Chris Moneymaker! He had been on the same plane from Atlanta. We talked for a minute. I told him I wouldn't have been there if it wasn't for him, which was true. I had brought some homemade chocolate chip cookies and offered him one. He munched it. I doubt he remembers meeting me but I sure remember meeting him. Maybe the cookie stuck, I dunno.
I have a picture of my chauffeur waiting for me in Dublin. The guy that got 1st and I and his grandpa were driven to our hotel where we would stay for the week. I can't remember the other qualifiers name. He told me a couple days later a full breakfast was also included. I think it was a $300 a night Hotel. That night they took us to dinner and we were joined by Ram Vaswani of the Hendon Mob, who were hosting the event. Got $500 spending money, later in the week went to dinner with Joe Beevers, also of the Hendon Mob, Joe was truly a class act.
The Merrion Club casino was unlike any casino I'd ever seen. The entrance was in the middle of what looked like an apartment complex and probably was. There was room for 2 poker tables on the first floor, some gaming tables on the second and 2 tables on the top floor. I don't think they had any slot machines. At the pre-event party there were several big name pros and the event was full of champions: Phil Hellmuth, "devilfish" Ulliott- I even got a customary Devilfish wink- Greg Raymer was fresh off his main event win as the series used to play earlier in the year, Chris Moneymaker as mentioned earlier, Phil Ivey, Paul Phillips, WPT winner, Carlos Mortensen, all 4 Hendon Mob, Gus Hansen, Clonie Gowan. Those are all I can remember. 6 or 7 of us Prima qualifiers in our Prima shirts and hats.
The tourney was pot limit and Sky TV filmed it. I never got to see it since no American market was interested in pot limit, apparently. Doesn't anyone that plays want to be on TV?! Sigh. I guess I was but nobody I know saw it nor did I. They ran the tourney in 10 seat SnGs, basically, with the top 2 moving to final table. There were 125 entrants, I think, so don't know exactly how that worked out. I obviously didn't make it. Made a bad call playing a hand I shouldn't have been in the first place. Joe Beevers got 2nd. Got it in w AJ vs KQ and lost. Won a little playing cash games while I was there.
On the way back I left the Atlanta airport and had one of the best meals I've ever had at a Churrascaria-- Brazilian Barbecue-- skewers of different meats brought to your table, green light, red light style. Misread my ticket and had to stay an extra night. Missed my flight.
First night back I won the nightly $25 7k. Went on with my newfound confidence and free time from quitting to win over $10,000 that month. Almost as much as I had won all year. July was even better! 20k. That August I FTed and won their Major-- a $50r 100k for $27,500. Got cocky and sat down at 5000NL... and won $20,000 my first night playing that. Went to Vegas for a few days with my buddy, his first time there. Lost 16 or 18k back at the 5000NL and ended the month up over 50k. I had no clue how to manage bankroll nor was there much information to be found on line at that time. I was starting to think Porsche and retiring early! Prima couldn't cash me out as fast as I was making it! I hadn't had a losing month after the first three learning to play. I read more poker books, Sklansky had some good ones then. Don't know if they're still relevant today.
Sigh. Of course playing 5000NL caught up to me. Should never have played so high. Started that September out well but lost another 16k in one sitting and ended up losing that much for the month. My first losing month. Losing 16k in a month... fried my gourd. I wasn't bulletproof after all. Don't remember how much, a few thousand probably, but lost October and December also. I was trying to play more cash which for me was a big mistake. MTTs are a lot more fun IMO but at the time I was concentrating more on cash games and playing 400 and 1000NL which was still probably over my head BRM wise. I started having a few beers while I played also that fall. Obviously one of the worst thing any poker player can do is drink and play. I struggled through 2005, just missed a $30,000 trip to Monte Carlo for 2. It was a freeroll on Prima for all the people who had won a trip to a land-based tourney. 62 entrants, winner take all. I lost with 66 < AT aip for the win. Heart breaker. Won another 100k guaranteed that December for $27,000, played over my head again, yes $5000NL, and lost most of it back before the month was over.
2006 started, I wasn't having much fun playing anymore and drank too much beer. The UIGEA-- Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act passed that Spring and Prima, Party and all the other "euro" sites, as they're now typically called, left the U.S. market. I went back into Pest Control.
In Spring of 2007 I had a ladder fall while working and broke my foot. Couldn't work all summer and got fired a month from being able to work again in August. Collected unemployment for a few months and got another job Spring of 2008. I had barely played any poker since 2006, but started to miss it. I had quit drinking completely by then. I realized how badly I sabotaged myself. I started thinking I should give it another chance now that I'd learned some hard lessons. I didn't much respect the people I was working for and didn't care if they knew it. I hated working for people I thought were idiots, assholes or both. I got fired mid 2009 without a proper reason so I was able to collect unemployment again. Really, exactly what I had hoped for. Some time to hone my poker skills and give it another go.
I practiced for a month on UB, then made a $100 deposit on Full Tilt. Somehow I won a 30 or 35k for $5800 1st night I played on Tilt in years. It sure felt like a sign. But I was bad. I'm sure I was worse than I knew at the time. I lost for the next few months but started getting coaching and that fall met a grinder who is now my best poker friend. That was huge! I had NEVER knew anyone that played besides the couple coaches I had had. They were acquaintances. Having a good player to talk to was and is so good for me and my game. This friend is now rated in the top 100 on P5 and we still talk almost daily.
I lived in Washington state at the time. They passed some stupid law that made on line poker a felony. I played anyway but couldn't on stars or FTP. A few months later Black Friday rolled around. Sigh. A moment of silence...
I started thinking about moving out of the country even though I hadn't proved that I could sustain myself with poker at all. I could always move back and kill bugs, that would always be there. I started making plans. Played Merge and Bodog in the mean time and was winning something for several months. My Roi for Merge in 2011 was over 20% for MTTs so I wasn't a total chump. My game had improved a lot since I started up again. It'd been over a year and a half.
I packed up my cats, rented my house and moved to Costa Rica with the PocketFives refugee service. I wanted to move to Ecuador originally but that fell through. Cuenca Ecuador had been rated the best place in the world to retire. I'm not retired obviously but it seemed like a good, inexpensive place to live. Oh well. Didn't happen. Costa Rica is nice, the weather is great.
I got my internet and sent documents to Stars and every other site I thought was decent: Party, Pacific, OnGame, Microgaming and iPoker. I started playing again at the end of April. I fully expected to struggle for a few months figuring out what to play where and getting used to all the new sites. Somehow I've been able to avoid that for the most part so far. Knock on wood. I get coaching occasionally, watch videos, talk HHs with a few people I've met. I work on my game every week. If I could average 3k+ a month by the end of this year I was going to be very pleased. Well. I had a $4,000 month in June, almost as much in July even though I took a week off and visited the states. Around $5500 in August, then broke out for over $24,000 last month! I don't drink and play EVER. I barely drink at all anymore. My Bankroll Management is nitty if anything. I've been extremely conservative this time around. I hardly ever play cash games and if I do it's $20 or $50NL. $5000 never again. I don't like cash games. It really seems like I have a better understanding of what it takes to win at this game consistently now. No other "job" can offer the freedom and challenge that poker does, at least for me. Playing a game for a living... how can that be bad? I love this game! I'm not gonna screw it up this time.
Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed my story.

Edited By: AnotherPhil