Sunday, July 24

Broken Promises

But At Least I'm Making Cake

A few posts ago, I said, and I quote, "I promise I'll get off this poker kick soon."

I, uh, lied.

But the good news is that I am making a ton of money. After I busted out of the WSOP satellite, I had $15 left in my account at Full Tilt. I've since added $200. That may not seem like a lot of money, but it's a healthy clip for three weeks at 25¢/50¢ and 50¢/$1 tables.

In addition, I also qualified for a satellite to the World Poker Tour's Borgata Poker Open, to be held in September. The Borgata is the stomping grounds of INCITE's Beck, and he's told me a lot about the casino. (Well, actually, the only thing I really remember is that, in his expert opinion, they have the best-looking cocktail waitresses in Atlantic City, which is more than good enough for me.) True to form, I earned my $216 satellite seat on the cheap, winning a $4.40 miniminisatellite and finishing fifth in the $26 minisatellite to qualify.

I met Mr. Minbet at the $26 minisatellite. He's a very sneaky player. I call him "Mr. Minbet" because he almost always bet or raised the minimum amount. At a no-limit table, the minimum bet is equal to the big blind. The minimum you can raise to is double the big blind. So, if the blinds were 50/100, he'd almost always raise to 200 before the flop and only fire out bets of 100. This is not always tactically smart but is very deceptive. If someone is betting the minimum at you, they may have a mediocre hand; they could, however, be holding a monster and are just begging you to raise them.

He did that to me in the $26 mini. He was on my left, and I found K/9 in the small blind. I figured it was a good enough hand to steal his big blind, so I raised. He called. The flop came king-high, and top pair is usually an excellent hand if only the blinds are playing. I checked. He min-bet. I put him all-in. He called. He had aces. That blow crippled me, but I was able to scratch and claw (and luck) my way back into qualifying for the satellite.

Fate brought Mr. Minbet and I together there, but this time, I was on his left, two seats to be precise. Early in the tourney, I found A¨/Qª in the big blind (the blinds were 20/40). A middle position player limped in, Mr. Minbet limped from the button, the small blind completed, and I decided to check, hoping to clobber someone with an ace and a smaller kicker.

The flop came Aª/8¨/J¨. Good flop, but the flush draw was worrisome. So I decided to ditch the fancy stuff and take the pot down immediately. After the small blind checked, I bet 160, equal to the size of the pot. The first limper folded, Mr. Minbet called, the small blind folded and I scratched my head. What's he holding? A draw? He wouldn't have the odds to call unless he had a straight-and-a-flush draw, or maybe a pair plus a draw. Or . . . he has A/J and is waiting for me to press. That seems likely.

The turn was Q©. Bingo! Prepare to be owned, Mr. Minbet. I checked, and he bet 120. Not the minimum (40), but still a dinky bet into a pot that was already 480. I raised all of my 2000-some chips, and he called with the 1110 he had left.

He had Q¨/4¨. A flush draw that paired up on the turn, but I had two pair. Wonderful! All I need is to dodge a diamond and I can rid myself of this festering little pain in my as—

5¨. He made his flush. My first thought was That little sonofa . . . but then I remembered that I invited this disaster by not raising before the flop to get him to fold his junk hand. The flop call was loose, but from the big blind I could have had anything, so his flush draw was probably good and his Q might even have been a live out.

I spent the next hour trying not to get eaten alive with my depleted stack. The blinds escalated to 60/120, and I found 10§/9§ in the big blind. Suited connectors aren't my favorite hands, but if I can see a cheap flop I'll play with them. As it turned out, the cutoff position limped in, Mr. Minbet limped again from the button, the small blind completed, and I got to see the flop for free.

It came 8§/K§/6¨. I had a short stack (10% of it was already in the pot as the blind) and a one-card draw. I was going to go to war on this hand, but I made a pot-size bet of 480 in the hope that everyone folded, and everyone did — except Mr. Minbet, who put me all-in.

I called immediately. He had 8©/6©. Two pair. I had to call no matter what because, like I said, it was double-up-or-bust for me at that point. But, analyzing it after the fact, it was a perfectly good call. I had a flush draw and an inside straight draw, giving me 13 outs. A player with thirteen outs has a 48.1% chance of hitting his hand. Practically even money (I still had to worry about him filling up a full house), and certainly just about as good as I could hope for.

The turn was 7©. There's my straight. Cross your fingers, here comes the river . . .

5¨ again. Whew. Doubled up.

That was the last time I tangled with Mr. Minbet. I won a couple more hands and got into the low teens on the leaderboard (top 4 went to Atlantic City, next 5 cashed), but foolishly gave away a large chunk of my chips when I didn't follow my read on a hyperagressive player (even more aggressive than me, which is rare) and folded a pot that, since he showed his cards, I would have split with him: we both had A/J. In fact, I had the better hand since I still had a backdoor flush possibility (the flop was all undercards with two diamonds, and my ace was a diamond). But I gave it up because I was afraid of A/K or A/Q.

After that, I was in trouble, and busted out when I went all-in with K/Q and ran into A/Q. IGHN, in 86th place out of 282. No hot cocktail waitresses for me. *sniff*

There are two more satellites, though. :D

I swear on the only Instalanche I've ever received that I will start writing more about things unrelated to cards. Just not today. It's 100º outside (okay, 94º, but with the heat index it's 112º) and my air conditioner is only good for my bedroom. So I'm not sitting out here in the office to bake while I rack my brain to think of something clever to say about Karl Rove. I'll rack my brain in my 68º bedroom, thank you.

Also, brandonw1 from FTP: shoot me an e-mail at marchandchronicles -at- so I can arrange to send you something for signing up with me.


Location: Mishawaka, Indiana, United States

I graduated with an English degree from the University Of Notre Dame in 2001, and in 2008 I have a day job that has nothing to do with my degree but gets the bills paid in a semi-regular fashion. (I have running water five days a week!) The idea is that once I get turned around on my bills, I go to grad school. I also have an idea for cold fusion. Anyone's guess which will be feasible first. In non-work mode, I'm usually reading columns by famous and well-read thinkers, blogs by critically praised writers, or sometimes blogs by overzealous cranks who make me laugh. I yearn to be all three at once; until then I'll settle for being the third. I also have an undying love for the Chicago Cubs and Notre Dame football. Praise them and I'll buy you a beer; curse them and I'll dump it over your head. If that's not enough, I'm becoming quite the fan of no-limit Texas Hold'em. My games have one of two results: I either win all the money or whine because I didn't win all the money.

marchandchronicles -at-

Fair warning: I reserve the right to post any and all criticisms and flames, in their entirety. Seriously. Just ask this guy.

July 2006
May 2006
April 2006
January 2006

January | February | March | April
May | June | July | August
September | October | November | December

Essays on whatever I feel like writing about.

August 8, 2005: High Gas Prices
August 1, 2005: Judge Roberts' Hearings
June 20, 2005: Senator Durbin's Comments
May 23, 2005: Newsweek & Pepsi
May 2, 2005: Al Gore's MoveOn Speech
April 25, 2005: Lebanon
April 18, 2005: The Nuclear Option
April 11, 2005: Pope John Paul II
March 5, 2005: The Domino Effect
January 31, 2005: Iraqi Elections
January 24, 2005: Bush's Inaugural
January 17, 2005: Roemer, Dean & The DNC

WARNING: links, comments & trackbacks may contain profanities or other items of unscruples. marchand chronicles does not endorse any comment/opinion expressed in any such addendum.

A¨ A© aces
Steal The Blinds

A§ K§ ace-kings
RealClearPolitics: Index / Blog

A¨ Q¨ ace-queens
MY Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy
Michelle Malkin (no link: here's why)

A© J© ace-jacks
Captain's Quarters

Aª 10ª ace-tens
Riehl World View

K¨ Kª kings
James Lileks: The Bleat / Screedblog
Eject! Eject! Eject!
USS Clueless / den Beste @ RedState
Hugh Hewitt
Power Line
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protein wisdom
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Q© Qª queens
a small victory
Little Miss Attila
LaShawn Barber
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You Know You Wanna

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InDC Journal
Best Of The Web Today
A Chequer-Board Of Nights And Days
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Baseball Crank

10§ 10¨ tens
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John Hawkins
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K© Q§ paint
Day By Day
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?? ?? jokers
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A© 6© suited
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7ª 2¨ rags
The American Spectator
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3§ 3¨ treys
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2© 2ª deuces
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Contributor to Steal The Blinds


marchand chronicles has such massive readership and influence that it makes me weep.
—Glenn Reynolds


Damn right.


What's Your Line?


I absolutely love the name of your site.

Scott "Big Trunk" Johnson, Power Line
Just the name? Not the content? . . . I'll take it.

You have something in common with Dave Barry, Hemingway, and Mark Steyn: I'm not linking to them, either.


That's good stuff there Mark.

Dean Barnett, Soxblog
Psst, it's "Mike."

(click to buy)

St. Elsewhere
The Pulse: SIRIUS 9

All text and original images © MMVI by Mike Marchand/Marchand Chronicles.

Okay, so I don't really have a copyright. But I still don't want you ripping me off. Reprint it all over the Internet if you like, but give me proper credit and link back to me. Besides, if you're going to plagiarize, steal from someone with some talent.

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