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Taller than most. Louder than most.

More layers to my personality than an onion, peel me and I could make you cry.



Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Hands that entertained me recently...

I had no poker plans last weekend as it's my daughter's 18th on Wednesday so all incoming funds were already earmarked. And some.

The best laid plans however ... Got a text at 2pm from some old guy who used to be good at poker telling me to get down to DTD if I wanted to enter the £500 6 Max Turbo and if I cashed I could keep 25% of anything I won. Christmas come early!

Now I don't have a car at the moment but the Gods were definitely on my side, as a non-bitter ex boyfriend had lent me his van all week while he was on holiday, so I was off and away before my backer could change his mind.

I got to DTD and tentatively approached the cashier, wondering if I would find it was actually a late April's Fool, or that I had received a text meant for someone else, but no, my name was on the list and I was coming in. I was a late entry, which normally I try to avoid as I know from experience I don't bring a lot to the party as a late arrival. I try to force it and end up going out on hands I should never have been there to satrt with. However, someone else picking up the tab definitely makes a difference to my way of thinking so I decided to go slow for a while, despite the fact my starting stack of 50K was already under the average, and the blinds were 8/1600.

As soon as I sat down the man to my left looked at me and asked had I just entered. I said I had. He then seemed really suprised and asked again, "You've just entered now?"

I could have simply replied Yes again. Unfortunately he had pressed the switch.

"Is that okay, " I asked. "They have relaxed the no ladies rule haven't they?"

So he started to bluster a bit, but he was up against the Queen of bluster. "No need to be like that" he says "I'm just being friendly"

"Really? And when the men at this table sat down where you friendly to them? Did you make a point of singling them out to chat to? Or did you just see a female and go into Neanderthal mode?"

As this is happening I look at my first two cards to find AK and raise, upon which he promptly announces all in. Folds round to me and I fold and show him the AK saying "Mate I know you have shit all but I don't get lucky in flips and it's too early for penis waving comps" He flips over 67 off like the hero that he is.

I look at him pityingly "I always find it's the guys with the smallest penises who tend to make these moves. They can't impress a woman with their length so they try to do it in other ways. I find guys with small penises also have huge cars: it's like inversely proportional"

The guy next to him cracks up laughing and says "He's just bought a Range Rover!"

I turn to him and smile, waggling my little finger at him, and then the guy in seat one pipes up "I don't have a car".

Not sure what he's saying here, but after a look at him, I realise the subliminal text here is that he is actually a virgin, and tell him so. This makes Neanderthal man laugh, so now we're all friends.

The mood massively improves. I know two of the guys at the table and the other three are all happy to have a giggle along with me, and soon we're all laughing like we're at a party, rather than a poker game. So much so that when I later got moved, the whole table collectively groaned and said Noooo take someone else!! Normally they say that when I'm bleeding chips but in this case it was simply because we didnt stop laughing for the whole time.

Rana is at my table and delights in telling everyone how the first time he met me was at Blackpool and I was perched on my chair with my legs tucked under me, wearing a short skirt. When I got in a hand with someone and he glanced over at me I apparently accused him of trying to look up my skirt and he got so flustered he folded. Let's face it, when you're being called a pervert in a hand it doesn't encourage you to want to stay in. Result.

While the merriment is going on, the cards however are dire. AK twice, losing minimal pots though, to J8 and T8, both to the same Bolton player who I would imagine either satellited in or his parent's left him a lot of money when they died in the same car crash he was brain damaged in.

I find myself in the situation of ten big blinds. Now I'm good at ten bigs - shove or fold. No thought process involved which kind of suits my brain capacity. Eventually I find QQ and it goes in, called by the virgin with A5 who flops two pair on an all spade board of A 5 7. Spade on the turn gives me a flush and the board doesn't pair for once, doubling me up. I'm still way under average so start stealing a few blinds which I can just about get away with now.

A young lad gets moved to our table, on my left, and is loving the banter. Folds round to me in the small blind and I pause, and ask him is there any chance I can see a flop? He tells me he hasnt looked yet, so I make up the blind and tell him I hope I haven't just wasted chips flat calling. He takes quite a lengthy look at his cards and checks, to see a flop of  7c 7h 8c. I have 67.

I tell him I've hit. He laughs like I've just told a joke - I'm not joking. He says he has as well. I tell him if we've both hit I'd best bet out just to find out where I am and make a relatively small bet to give him enough rope to hang himself. He does a dramatic pause then some hand gymnastics with more chips and flicks in a raise. I could flat call him here but I figure if I go all in he probably has to call  because I dont actually have many chips behind, and I doubt he has me on a 7. He snaps off my all in and turns over Kc Jc for the flush draw. I had one of those lovely inner peace moments where you simply know you aren't going to lose and sure enough, I didn't, even spiking the 6 on the river for the boat. Finally I am above average by about 500 chips. It's a start!

I get moved twice in quite quick succession and then find myself on Tikay's table where we're all soon having a giggle again. I'm on 200K + at this stage and average was around 110, not through any monster hands but a lot of talking that generally made my opponents fold before any need for showdown - just how I like it.

I raised up with 6 8 on the button and was called by Tikay in the SB and a lady in the BB.

Flop comes and Tikay steals my lines, telling me he's hit that board. Ah get your own jokes I tell him, and bet into them both on the flop of T 9 K with two hearts. He calls and so does the lady. Hmm.

I know Tikay is drawing but can't decide about the woman as have no idea how she plays as haven't really seen any cards or play from her. Turn is a brick, a duece, and they both check again. I make a bigger bet and tell Tikay he's a big fish calling for a heart draw so he'll have to pay more. He's heard it all before and calls. The woman dwells for so long I've entered the menopause by the time she finally sigh folds, and I tell the dealer "No hearts please!" So he obligingly puts a heart on the river, but I can see Tikay doesn't like the heart and definitely still hasnt found what he was after. So after he checks I put on a big show of disgust that a heart has come and slowly bet out half of the quite sizeable pot. Tikay says "It's yours, you got there" and turns over Q8 to show me he had nothing anyway. I can't resist turning over my 68 to show him he had the best hand but the smallest cojones. The woman who folded the turn starts huffing how she had the ten and would have won the hand.. um yeah but you folded remember?

The woman is quite clearly unimpressed with me at this stage. She makes a few snidey comments which I let go. I raise twice and she goes into playback mode each time, staring at me for three hours then taking another eon to min raise me. I let her have her way, I'm all for equality and gracefully check fold the flop so she feels better. Until this hand.

I raise with Kh 2h in the cut off. It looked sexy. It looked sexier still on a ten high two heart board.

I bet out and she slowly (oh so very slowly) called me. Turn is another heart. I have second nuts and I don't for a second think I'm behind or going to end up behind. I check as I know she has to bet out here, even more so if she has air, although I don't think she is actually good enough to have nothing here.She obliges by betting 25K, about 1/3 of the pot. I ask her what she has behind and she grudgingly tells me she has 160K. So i have a quick think about what she might pay me depending on her hand strength. I know she wont fold to a small raise purely to save face. If she has the ten I doubt she has the Ah as her kicker as I think she would have raised pre, so can't see how I'm getting outdrawn, but i dont't want to lose her if she has any heart at all, so I decide a small raise will get me more than flat calling as I think she may fold the river if she doesn't improve. I make it 75K.

She stares at me for ages while I don't say a word and then she says "Oh you've finally gone quiet?"

I laugh at this and tell her the reason why. Despite her seeing my silence as some form of tell it really comes down to another reason - I never trash talk women at the poker table in a mixed game. I truly believe women in poker should stick together as there are so few of us, so I wouldn't disrespect another girl by chatting shit to them. I know some women can be really intimidated by me, unintentionally, so in a one-on-one scenario I try to not be too scary! Unless of course they are a cunt. Then they can have it.

I can see she doesn't believe me, but that's not my problem. I say to her " I truly believe I have the best hand here. I'm trying to let you know that by giving you the opportunity to fold." She asks me what I think she has.

I can see the reply isn't "an attitude problem" so instead I say "I don't know what you have. Truthfully, I think you don't have anything: I think you aren't keen on my table persona and so want to play back at me to be the Queen Bee, as before I sat down you were enjoying being the only female here, and I've ruined that for you. So while I may not have the nuts, I still think you have nothing so I'm raising to let you know I know you have nothing, so why not just fold. You can't call my raise as it leaves you with under 100K and it isn't a playable stack, that's why I raised that amount."

She is outraged and says "you think I'm just playing back at you out of spite?!"

Nope. I just want you to get so pissed at me you give me all your chips so I've raised it just enough that you think you can go all in and I'll have to fold.

Instead of saying all that I simply say "you don't know me but I always tell the truth about my hand as I find people never believe me anyway. I honestly think I have the best hand so you decide what you have and let me know"

Self-destruct button is depressed and she lets out a cry of "ALL-IN" and starts to shove her chips over the line. If i was a bitch I could have asked for a count but instead I simply said call and kindly flipped over my cards, relieving her of the need to turn her cards over if she was drawing dead. I never did get to see what she had as she then threw both her cards across the table, tipped her chair over and stormed off straight to the roulette.

Women. Know your limits.

So that hand gave me a lovely healthy stack of arond 400k and as we were into level 16, last level of the day I decided to not play any more hands. Well, unless they were actual hands and even them I was trying to avoid to keep my nice stack for day 2, but then I found two red Kings UTG and popped in a min raise that encouraged a gentleman to go batshit crazy with A9 off preflop, for a 350K pot which topped me up nicely to the exact figure of 666K (second chip leader) as we bagged our chips up. Number of the beast what else?

So I hadn't anticipated actually getting through to day two, so set off on the 2.5 hour drive back home. It hadn't actually sank in what a stack I had until a poker buddy texted me on the way home " late entry then smashes comp up? wp, gl tomorrow!" Suddenly a massive grin was on my face all the way home as I realised I was massively stacked and in a good position for the next day.

Day Two I found I was nervous. I can get loose with a big stack and donk it off but obviously wanted to avoid that. So with this in mind for some reason I found myself calling a min raise from the big blind with 85 offsuit, after Brett Angel raised and Willie Tann called. As you do when you're playing tight.

Flop Ace high, with an 8 for me and two hearts. Brett checks after me and Willy bets out quite small. I call for no reason other than I don't want to appear weak by calling my big blind then folding. I appreciate this is not the best game plan, but I never proffesed to be good. Brett folds and the turn is a heart. I check quite fast and Willy looks at me for a while before checking behind. River is nothing so I decide my best Oscar skills may help me rep a flush from the blinds and bet about half the pot. Positive thoughts as I sit there confidently visualising my imaginary flush, which must have convinced Willie Tann as he showed me the Ace of clubs as he folded it. Thankfully bluffing Willie in the first hand was enough of a fix for me and I managed to rock up from then on.

Didn't play loadsof hands and found myself going from 660 to 1M, back to 660 and back to 1m about three times. Never felt out of my depth or stressed and was loving the game, even when on the losing end. Then Tom Hall got moved to my left, who had been the chip leader yesterday. As soon as he sat down I groaned "That's all I need, just lost half my chips and boy wonder with his monster stack sits on my left" Tom ruefully showed me his stack and confessed he had just lost most of it to Jamie OConnor. He still had about 400K left as we went into the next hand, in which he was big blind.

It folded round to me and I found A2 which is a hand I hate with a passion. Aware I'm still probably ahead I asked Tom how he felt about his blinds being raised and popped it up a little, saying I wasnt sure how he would react and if he went all in I'd probably just fold at best or at worst, if he called I'd probably check fold the flop like a girl. It worked, he flat called and we saw a flop of T 2 2. Blessed.

I told him I'd hit (you know how it works by now) but checked. I respect Tom as a player and knew I was going to have to work hard to get a single chip off him, and figured betting into him was not the way forward here. Happily he decided to bet. I did a good impression of first stage labour and had an obvious long look at my cards, then a long look at the flop, made as if to think about folding then a reluctant call. I would never try this on some people but I felt he would fall for the hamming it up. Turn was a K and I told him I'd improved, then bet out really weakly. He raised me! Oh there is a god. I decided to shove all in as if trying to steal and did so. He starting talking to me (oh Tom big mistake) and said he had K T - top two pairs. I immediately shrunk into my chair and told him I didnt want to hear what he had, I had all my chips in the middle and I wasn't going to talk to him as I thought he was looking for a tell. He counted out his chips and kept looking at me until I called for a clock, which usually induces a call, and he obligingly called. To be fair to Tom, he was always calling, he was holding back because he felt I had A2 but didnt see how he could get away from the hand. I flipped the A2 he flipped the KT and I held putting me up to 1.2m. After the hand another guy on the table said to me "I was convinced you had nothing there and had read it all wrong, thinking your all in would get him to fold"  As that's exactly what I was trying to portray I was quite happy and am considering applying for RADA next September.

The game went pretty fast until down to two tables with 10 players left. I had a guy called Terry on my right who had just lost most of his stack calling down every street with pocket twos. He then got it all back again after snapping off an allin shove with a9 and winning, then doubled up again with aces.

My exit hand involved an UTG min raise from a very loose player with a shorter stack than me ( I had about 870 and the average was 971) followed by a flat call from Terry. I found pocket tens and decided to shove here. I didnt imagine I was getting a call as had enough for UTG to fold, and I didnt see Terry as a threat. Big mistake. I rarely shove all in, that's not my game, I prefer to wreck people's heads on the board and get them to fold or call depending on what I want from them. Anyway, all folded including UTG but Terry asks for a count. The horrible thing was I knew he was itching to call and never folding from his body language but the delay was a sickener. Eventually he says call and I turn over tens, he turns over pocket queens, and spikes another one first card out to put me out in 10th place for £2500.

Cest La Vie and all that.

Was still in time to late enter the hyper Turbo 6 max for another £500 from my backer, who was playing it himself, so got into that, chattedshit at people, bullied young boys and pissed off a dealer until I went out in 8th place for another £1500. Not too shabby for a free weekends poker.

Total cash £4k of which I got £1k. If I hadn't have been backed I wouldn't have played so it's like free money - massive thanks to the boss man.