Along time ago, I was in a lounge near a poker room, waiting for a game. On a chair nearby a fellow player was reading a book.
Suddenly he noticed me, nodded, and half-whispered, “This is a great book.”
“What’s it about?” I wondered.
He shrugged. “This and that, I guess.” And it was all he had to say on the matter. He was reading again, and our conversation had apparently ended.
Two things barge into our brains when we hear the words “poker” and “rankings” in the same sentence. How do the possible hands rank, based on profit? And how do the players rank, when deciding who’s best?
Fine. We’ll use those two types of rankings as the basis for today’s self-interview. And that means there will be only two questions.
Poker is about deception. And winning at poker requires an ability to disguise who you are at this very moment and a talent for making your intentions unclear. Let’s talk about that in today’s self-interview.
Question 1: Is it necessary to be deceptive in poker? Can’t you win by being yourself?
Actually, I’ve occasionally known players who could win by just being themselves. But don’t expect that to happen to you.
Let’s prepare for 2011 by talking about how the word “rock” applies to poker. A rock can be defined as a conservative player who is extremely disciplined and enters few pots. That’s the topic for today’s self-interview, as we search for the inner rock in all of us.
Question 1: Can a rock make money at poker?
Exploring my poker past might not fascinate you the way it does me. If that’s the case, I apologize for this column.
I estimate that there are almost 3,000 meaningful events that could be remembered, bringing me to where I am today. So far, I’ve only actually succeed in remembering about one hundred. Maybe examining a few of those will be interesting to somebody besides me. Let’s find out.
Question 1: Why did you get involved in playing poker seriously?
Some players look disdainfully on opponents who play poorly. I don’t.
Instead, I try to encourage bad habits and bad decisions. And, by coincidence, today’s word is
This self-interview discusses why bad play should be encouraged rather than ridiculed.
Question 1: You say you shouldn’t be disdainful of poor play. But isn’t that a natural reaction for a superior player?
Well, I had another break-even week at poker. And I mean exactly break even, because I’m enjoying my hermitage deep in the Ozarks without poker. No wins. No losses. No games.
However, I’m about to fly to the Dominican Republic in a few days on business and will be investigating the public poker scene there. Yes, there is poker in the DR! It reminds me just how off-track those who want to banish poker in the United States are, with our game’s popularity thriving worldwide.
There’s a fear that runs through poker. It’s the fear of going to the well once too often – succeeding too many times with the same play. Because of this fear, many players adjust needlessly, throwing away a lot of potential profit in the process. That’s what I’m going to talk about in today’s self-interview. We’ll learn that if something is working (today’s word), it’s often a mistake to shift gears. But there are exceptions.
In going over the tips and concepts presented, I tried to identify some tips that players might have problems understanding.
In this self-interview, I’ll talk about winning advice that is frequently ignored, forgotten, or poorly implemented. Ready, set, go…
While looking over and thinking about questions I’ve been asked about hold’em, I’m seeing a huge omission. Almost none of these questions have been specifically about how to play the turn. (In case you’re just getting started with hold’em, the “turn” is the name we give to the fourth face-up board card. The three-card “flop” precedes it and it is followed by the final “river” card.)