Ornate Push




Wednesday, February 27, 2008


The last two days have been hellish. I woke up on Monday with a mild headache and popped a couple of hedex and walked to work. By 10am I was so I'll I couldn't move without feeling like I was going to throw up and my brain felt like it was trying to squeeze out of my skull. Migraine. Only the third one I've ever had. I left work at 11 when it was only getting worse and spent the rest of Monday and all Tuesday lying in the dark waiting for it to go away. Watch TV ? Couldn't. Look at laptop screen ? Couldn't. Read a book ? Couldn't. Totally, utterly useless. I did go to the docs to see if there was anything better than hedex he could give me. Wouldn't. I told him there's only one thing in common with any of the migraine's I've had in the past, chinese meals the day before. MSG ? Seems logical no ? Not according to my doc, it's probably a virus he says. All doctors say that when they don't know what else to explain it with. I'm sure it's MSG or some other ingredient in some of the chinese meals I've had. Not all chinese meals btw, just the very occassional one. Anyway I guess I'll have to avoid them from now on, cause two days just waiting for the pain to end isn't worth it !

P.S. You should be reading Hoy's Blog seeing as he just did a recap of how he crushed the 50-50 on Full Tilt.
I've sat at a table once or twice with Hoy in blogger games, and he always outplays me and probably has a note saying "brit donk" so it's nice to have a chance to watch and learn. Take Notes People ! It will make you a better player. Congrats Hoy !

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Crackin Aces

Yesterday was the day of crackin aces, I was dealt AA in 6 different tourneys and one cash game. You know how many times it held up ? Once. That was because I overplayed them and got everyone to fold. I saw 4 other people get their AA cracked and I was on the right side of one of them when my 77 turned trips. Statistics Shmatistics, some days the RNG goes on a downswing.

The good vibe here continues, I went deep or close to the money in most of the tourneys I entered this weekend. Made $60 playing limit 1/2 and finally won a $4 180 for $216 bucks. Decisions are coming easier and my attentiveness is on the rise.

Nephews 11th Birthday party tonight so not sure if I'll be crackin any more aces later.
Have a good day !

EDIT : News just in ! Nat Arem didn't go AWOL his blog is alive and well at natarem.com so is now linked back up. Sorry !!

Friday, February 22, 2008


"[Insert deity here], grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference." - Serenity prayer, poker player mantra

I've played about a dozen tournaments this week, and nearly all of them I've had the chips taken away from me in cruel, horrible situations. My greatest success of the week has been 3rd place in measly $2 180 on FullTilt. This however is not your typical woe-is-me bad beat post. I've played my reads rather than my cards, and the faith is growing.

I've had Aces cracked by J-8
I've had the suck-resuck-resuck with AJ vs AT
I've even had KK vs 99 AIPF after raise-reraise-reraise-allin. How did he think 9's were good ?!
Don't even get me started on the way my Queens are performing in critical situations.

And yet I've found more joy in the game in the last two nights than I have for a very long time.

Yes, there are moments of complete and utter disbelief, even anger. But these are becoming less pronounced and shorter lived. I'm believing my own preaching about luck, mistakes and bad beats. My biggest fear when I started playing regularly again was that I'd never get back to this point. You can't miss something you've never had so in the past it was never a problem. Knowing that there is something missing from your game when you're playing is a horrible, horrible feeling. The comfort from having one piece of the jigsaw back in place is very satisfying.

There are still big chunks missing, most notably my attention to opponents playing hands I'm not involved in, and therefore reads are more like fortunate guesses. Slowly though the poker brain is being retrained, and heading back to place it feels good to be at.

** I just reread that, LOL, I sound so pretentious sometimes **
I just feel good about poker right now, OK ! I'm running bad but getting my chips in good. That's something to be chuffed about.
Finally here are some blogs I've added quite recently which you should be reading too

Brickin The Nutz
Lair of Lucypher
Thinking Man
The Doctor
The Wife

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Most of you have nothing to fear, here's the list of blogs that have brutally clubbed over the head :

20kMission Not updated since October
Aussie Poker Went to Fiji in November and we've not heard since, who can blame him !
Billinga's Race to 100k It appears the race ended in May last year
But it was sooted Moved the blog to Wooooooot! (and is on a hot streak atm)
Cadmunkey This blog was hijacked in October so its dead
Check in the Dark Not updated for 2 months, that's long enough
Cowboy Poker Not updated for nearly 4 months, so twice as dead as Check in the Dark
Facty Blog moved to Factgirl
FishSoup committed Hara-kiri on Jan 16th
Iakaris is now at Iakaris [Redux]
Getting'Hammered! Not seen since Nov 14th, got hammered once too often ?
Guin's Canadian Poker Blog No updates for 2 months, out of action
Hammerheid For the first time ever, a scotsman is silent for 3 months
Hometown poker Disappeared on 25 July
Just a small pair Nothing since Oct 30th
Kenny's bad beat café Nothing since September
Loathing (and Loving) Poker Has had to go into hiding
Mean Gene moved to Gene Bromberg Mean Gene
Mias Dad Nowt since October
Monkey Tourney Nowt since November
N 82 50 24 Went AWOL in June
Nothing special here Nothing special since November
Poker Inspiration Tips Advice moved to Donkey Thrasher
Tawegian No updates since October
Pokercoaster moved to Raffel 69
PPPPPleasures another one gone since October
Rivered Phoenix blog got hijacked in September
Smooth moved to Smooth Please
Hdouble Gone but not forgotten, the link remains because the past posts are too good to die
Jesus Challenger Not updated since October
Brandon Not updated since September
Yorkie Moved to Yorkshire Pudding Poker
Weakplayer Nothing since April !
Shaniac Not updated since November

Jeezuz that was hard work. Couple of new blogs and poker update to follow.

Bad Times

Tradition dictates a Good Times post will be followed by a Bad. So here it is. Last night I played 4 tourneys. Two rebuy satellites and two standard MTT buyins. I went bust in 3/4 of them because I didn't have enough faith in myself.
One two pair vs a set on the flop, where I knew the only hand the guy could have was the set.
One pair of Kings UTG deep-stacked vs the only other deep stack at the table and I knew he had caught his straight card on the turn, though this was poor play by him he could justify it with implied odds.
One J high flush vs Q high flush.
and finally one pair of Queens vs AK, which is just fair enough.

The horrible thing about this is that I had good reads every time and went with my hand anyway as if I had to prove it to myself. How do I learn to trust myself in these situations ? At present the only way I can see is to keep doing this and being proven right enough times that it becomes a stronger urge to believe my instincts than to want to see the hands be shown. Another regrettable example of this problem is from the warm-up on Sunday. Holding TT in MP, it's raise-reraised up for 3 of us to see a flop of 854. There are two aggressive players with big stacks before me and it gets raised and reraised again before it's my turn to act. I feel my hand is good but instead of pushing the advantage I fold like a girl, only to see them both go to war with top pair good kicker. If I went with the heart on that hand I'd go into the top 10 stacks with 150 people left.

Just disappointing knowing I've been right in these spots and haven't had the heart to follow through. I think it would be better to get it wrong but have committed fully to the instinct.

The aim for the next few tourneys is to follow the instinct, and not be ashamed if it happens to be wrong.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Good times

If I'd folded Q6 in the SB i could have made an extra $130 just by waiting for one spot, but I guess I take the glory play instead of the profitable one when the adrenalin is rushing, he called with A6, dominated! 118th aint bad though, if I do say so myself.


Thursday, February 14, 2008


I played 9 of the 11 games I wanted to fit in last night, thanks to Stars having a little technical difficulty late in the day I couldn't start the final two.

Finishing positions were

45th ! QQ vs KQ allin on a J96 flop
36th AK vs AQ, I reraised PF and got all the money in on A42 flop, he turned the Q and then typed "almost got me" in the chat… cock.

This leaves me with 2 games to play, no time to play them and I'd need to get the top two spots in both to win the little challenge thing. Not likely.

Had my own technical difficulties when the cats decided to play kill the internets and dragged the router off it's shelf and unplugged it ! Was back up in short order though and don't think I missed any aces.

I did win a ticket for the Sunday million too in a $3 rebuy, love those things. It's been ages since I've seen a rebuy sat for the Sunday million, I think I've just been missing the start times rather than them not running anymore. They have always been by far my most successful way of getting tickets. I'm not sure if I'll play it or just the warm-up at the moment, I'm leaning towards the warm-up because the times are so much better but I'll see how I feel on Sunday.

This post is a bit abrupt since it's 'Black Friday' here at work. Bit of chaos caused by our external supplier breaking the stock price feed which has snowballed into all my apps ! At least it's not my head on the chopping block.

Gambler sues Bookie for allowing him to lose £2M

Read all about it

Not sure who's side I'm on in this one. At first I was with the Bookie because I thought the Gambler had opened a second account in a different name, but having read the story the second account was opened again in his own name. WillHill must have flagged it as well, with him being such a high roller. I think I'm on the side of the Gambler now. He used the self-exclusion method the bookie provided on his old account, but it was so easy to circumvent by opening a new account that it was almost pointless having it. That might mean the bookie neglected their duty of care.

Seeing as I haven't yet secured a regular valentine by impregnating unsuspecting young fillies, unlike Burnley Mik and Yorkshire Pud
, I will tonight be attempting to play 11 45-man SNG's on Stars to finish the "RTR 45 challenge" before the deadline of midnight tomorrow. I can't play tomorrow night because we've got a bowling session with work. I haven't been bowling in over a year and my style is best described as inconsistent. Usually my top form comes during the first quarter of the third beer, with lots of gutterballs after that.

I can feel a cull of links coming on too. I see lots of posts on blogs along the lines of …
"I played in x blogger tournament today and got busted by x's hugely retarded end of the world, the sky is falling play"

Maybe they need to point out it wasn't their mistake, they are superior to x in this instance. Well guess what, humans make mistakes, even bloggers. Sometimes they even benefit from their mistakes. You play a game that allows you to win because of their mistakes the majority of the time. I think it's about time you got used to the fact that sometimes it swings the other way, especially if you're one of the few really good players. The better you are the easier I would think it is to accept that this is the way things are. No amount of bitching about it is going to help. That's one of the reasons I have so much admiration for Phil Ivey and so much disdain for Phil Helmuth.

It's getting really boring reading blogs that just "out" other peoples mistakes on every single post. But I readily accept that all other poker bloggers make fewer mistakes than I, have worse luck with the RNG, and therefore should not listen to a word I post about this.

Finally I shall apologise in advance in case I make it to Kat's Therapy™ tomorrow night, because if I'm there I'll have been out drinking for 8 hours and will likely be very, very drunk

Monday, February 11, 2008

Missed them all

It's now a little over a month since I smoked a cigarette, instead of getting easier it's getting harder. The first few weeks are full of positive determination and gradually it diminishes to the same old thoughts of well is it really making any huge difference to my life. Little tiny insignificant annoyances are becoming huge dramas which last five minutes and then dissipating completely. I am even annoyed that I'm getting annoyed at some things !

I missed all of the tourneys I thought I was going to play this weekend. Friday I was asleep by the time Therapy™ started. Saturday I forgot, again, about the Saturdays with Dr Pauly game. Sunday I just didn't want to play in the brit bloggerment.

The only game I did play on Sunday was another of the 45's, but that turned to sh*t when I called UTG's min raise along with 3 others from my BB with Jh8d. I flopped two pair and ended up allin vs UTG's AA and the SB's OESD. AA turned a better two pair (pairing the 3 on the flop) and for good measure rivered an A.

Surprisingly, it didn't really upset me all that much.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Spring ?

Golden beams of warm sunshine cut through the night's frigid air this morning and woke me a good hour before the alarm was due. I always sleep with the curtains of the east facing window pulled back because there are few better ways to start the day than with the sun warming my face and brightening my eyes. It makes me feel there's something extra to get up for.

Hektor and Achilles, my two cats, clearly felt the same as they were keen to get breakfast early and start a busy day of lounging in the sun bird watching. I fed them tuna and got myself ready for work. My walk in only takes 15 minutes at most and usually I'm just waking up by the time I get to the security locked doors of my building. Today I enjoyed every minute of that walk. I savoured the crisp, fresh air and smiled as it combined with the bright sunshine to bring back memories of similar beautiful mornings in the past.

They were memories of days that started just the same, but I knew those mornings that there was something special in the air, something just felt right and good about them. If nothing else unique happens today, it will have been one of those mornings. Just because I woke up today, smiled and appreciated it and the memories I have of days before just like it.

Spring is one of my favourite times of year and if this year it's coming early then so much the better.


Blogger tourney's I'm going to try my best to play this weekend :

Blogger Donkament
Full Tilt, 9:00 PM EST
Password: donkarama
$1 + $1, unlimited rebuys + one add-on, NLHE

Saturdays with Dr. Pauly
PokerStars, 4:20 PM EST
Password: taopoker
$10 + $1, Pot Limit Omaha

PokerStars, 4:00 PM EST
Password: donkament
$5 + $.50, NLHE

Thursday, February 07, 2008

45 plyr SNG challenge

I've played game 1 of 15, and finished 7th for 7 points in the challenge. LouSaban is top scorer so far having completed her 15 games for a total of 99 points out of a maximum possible of 300. The thing is, because the scores are heavily weighted to 1st, 2nd or 3rd, that's a helluva a good score.

It means for me I need an average finish of 6.64 in the remaining 14 games in order to get 100 points to win the challenge. Difficult, but not impossible. Only one thing is certain, getting to the final table is a must.

Tonight I'm going to try and rack up 3 or 4 more of these things.

P.S. F*** winter fuel bills. I received my first this morning, and am still reeling.

Cash flow will be in a drought for the next 3 months.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Super-bowl, Super-tuesday, Super-bad

Boy I'm tired, 3.30am bedtime on Sunday after staying up to watch a very exciting final quarter of the Superbowl, Go Giants ! As the saying goes, it matters more when there's money on it, so my £10 @ 5.5 on betfair made it matter to me. Some of the plays in that last 5 minutes were just brilliant to watch, even for a guy like me who doesn't know the game very well. More good news is that the Chargers are going be playing in London in October. As my adopted team thanks to their win against the Colts I may have to make the trip over the water to see the game at Wembley.

It's Super-Tuesday today, that's a big primary day in America for anyone who's got their head in the sand. Seriously after the last 2 elections nothing would suprise me but I surely voting Republican again, based on the last 7 years, must stand up as one of the most stupid decisions America can make as a whole. Your economy is looking seriously fucked up and Dems have a far better ecomonic record the Republicans. (If you earn over $200,000 P.A. feel free to reverse that statement). It's not like I have a vote though so what good does it do discussing it here !

Superbad is an excellent funny film, it's the usual college kids party humour thing but it's well done and laugh out loud funny. Not laugh out loud funny is No Country for Old Men, but it is an awesome film, you'll need to in the mood to be challenged when you watch it, but just sit quietly and appreciate what's being put in front of you and it'll be one of the best movies you've ever seen. My friends watched it round at Twister's on Saturday night and I think they all enjoyed it. Thanks for the Steaks T, it was delicious.

Later, we put Amir Khan's boxing match on and after a few beers I fell asleep rather than throwing a whitey, at one point in the 4th round it was a coin-flip for me between sleep and throwing up. Thankfully this time, I held up.

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Ornate - adj. 1. Elaborately, heavily, and often excessively ornamented. 2. Flashy, showy, or florid in style or manner;

Push - 1. To exert outward pressure or force against something. 2. To advance despite difficulty or opposition; press forward. 3. To expend great or vigorous effort.

Ornate Push - The messy ramblings of a troubled poker player and tilted mind.


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