Sloe Times

A journal of my adventures in learning and growing personally and professionally

Tuesday, August 31, 2004


General: How does this thing work?

So my office mates have kicked off a fantasy football season and once again I'm in without a clue. Perhaps some of you better sports/football/stats equipped folks might take pity on me and help me out with the draft. It's an auto-draft so the only thing I get to do is alter my rankings on 25 players and/or exclude them from my ranking. Problem is, none of the names mean anything to me, and I don't understand if all of these guys are in the same/similar positions, or if I'm ranking my priority for the whole offense. Anyway, here's the ranking I've picked based on some advice, any help or advice you may wish to impart, I would be most appreciative. Last year I don't think I came in last, but that was due entirely to luck of the draw. I sucked so bad I forgot to track playing schedules so I had guys in that were not even playing some weeks. :( Anyway, I'd like to try and at least be competitive this year if nothing else. Is there anyone else in my list I should have and don't, what do you think of my priority order?

1. A. Green
2. M. Bennett
3. S. Moss
4. S. McNair
5. A. Johnson
6. C. Rogers
7. R. Wayne
8. K. Winslow
9. A. Boldin
10. G. Jones
11. J. Delhomme
12. B. Franks
13. Pittsburgh
14. J. Nedney
15. D. Carr
16. C. Brown
17. T. Calico
18. L. Smith
19. J. Brown
20. Jacksonville

Default Rankings (provided by Yahoo)
21. P. Holmes
22. L. Tomlinson
23. C. Portis
24. S. Alexander
25. D. McAllister


General: I'm going to be rich!

This was too funny to pass up:

Monday, August 30, 2004


Poker: Who is playing in command?

No. Who's playing first. -- Abbott and Costello

I've posed the following questions to a small group of bloggers:

How often do you figure you go on card rushes?

When you do, would you say it's something that just happens, or do you try and make them happen?

Feel free to answer them for yourself before reading on. Last month I can recall going on quite a few card rushes and having a real good month. As this month is winding down I'm looking back through poker tracker and not really seeing anything more than break even for the most part. Closer analysis showed that I'm not playing as many hands per hands dealt as I did in the previous month. Then like someone lighting a candle in a dark room, it hit me.

I'm playing on Pacific (I already withdrew my deposit, just playing on the bonus and the winnings) when I get KK and take down a decent pot. My next hand is J5s and I fold it away. My next hand after that is KQs and I take down another decent pot. For the record, the J5s would have taken down another monster and cracked AA. I wondered for a long time why I didn't play the J5. Not more than a month ago, I would have without hesitation. I missed out on a decent card rush that would have netted me at least 3 nice pots (maybe more) instead of 2.

Ok, so why would I have played a marginal hand like J5s and what does that have to do with rushes? I'd play it because Doyle told me to, and by not playing I'll never catch even half the rushes that I should. If you are using Poker Tracker and have the patience to, go back through and find every hand you've won in the last month, and then look at the next hand. Did you play it? If you didn't, would it have won if you had? That's tough to say if you didn't get to see all the community cards, but personally in looking back over my month there were quite a few times I could have seen the next hand cheap enough and won with it despite how raggedy the hole cards looked. How much money did I leave on the table by not following the aggressive sage advice of Doyle Brunson? There is of course the converse question of how much money did I save by not doing it? The answer to that one is easy though, not as much as I would have won.

So based on my limited experience in researching my play thus far, I'm standing in the camp of making rushes happen as opposed to just catching a nice string of great cards. The reason I think this is important is because there is a psychological shift of the players during card rushes and why it seems that in tournaments, or ring play, a big stack just seems to get bigger. I try to play the cards I'm dealt but some of those low-middle pairs don't look so good when going up against a guy that's just tearing a table up. It's this psychological advantage that I really want to explore and exploit. However, rather than make up my own lame interpretation of what this means, I'll quote from the good book:
...if I win a pot, I nearly always play the next pot as well, within reason. Although the cards will break even in the long run, card rushes do happen. A card rush means more than that you're winning a lot of pots. It also means that you have temporary command of the game.

He's specifically talking about no-limit games with this quote, but in my experience I've also seen similar behavior in limit games with reasonable (no real calling stations) players. It all boils down to taking command of the game and exploiting that temporary status for maximum return.

In home games it's pretty easy to take command without ever really doing anything. If you've built up a solid reputation there's going to be a certain group that just don't play their best against you, because they know you're better than them. Online, everyone realizes you're actually a 12 year old tabby with chronic hair balls and a cat nip addiction you just can't kick. So, naturally when you sit down at a new table, you get little to no respect. I think that a key factor in building that temporary/short term solid reputation is to seek and exploit the rushes. It seems to me the only way to make rushes happen is to do as Doyle says and play the follow up hands after a win and roll with it. The key to not getting punished for trying to make your rush is to get away from the hand if the flop misses you. Assuming you were able to limp in cheaply then you're out 1 BB. If the flop hits you though, more than likely you're going to be scraping more than 1 BB and that should more than make up for the misses.

The following comment(edited) is offered up by DoubleAs
Trying to make card rushes happen always fails. After losing several big pots, I sometimes push too hard and just compound the losing. You can't make cards happen and trying to make people fold won't work for very long. It seems that people quickly pick up on the fact that you've become a betting machine and will think you're out of line. They'll play back at you with mediocre hands or call you down with bottom pair guessing that you can't possibly have a good hand AGAIN. That mentality on your opponents' part is what makes card rushes so profitable. It must be ego issues on their part. I believe that poker is best played without emotion or ego by staying analytical and letting the cards work for you.

I think this supports the point of getting away from the hands when they don't hit. You can't force a rush, either the cards are with you, or they are not. Remember the point of what I'm suggesting is that by just playing the cards you're dealt, you may be missing out on the other hands you could, should, have won not so much because you played any two cards after a win, but because you're working to build momentum that will win you more chips with the monsters you do hold or draw.

This probably isn't too applicable to low limit games where the money just falls into your lap because your opponents are a sitting mistake. I can see however where this would be much more applicable in long term no limit games, tournaments, and higher stakes limit games.


General: Gen Con - Star Wars Pics

Sunday, August 29, 2004


Poker: Bloggers Tourney Aftermath

I think, all things considered, that I made a passable showing of myself. 15th place out of the 77 Bloggers and Readers for the Montey Memorial. I suspect (more like hope beyond reason) that if Pacific had kicked in their part of the kitty, I'd have actually placed in the money. Perhaps that's just me trying to boost my ego.

I'm pretty happy with how I played, the readers were especially tough but I guess since they're not out blogging about how bad they play like I am, it would make it tougher to figure them out. The important thing is that I didn't embarrass myself. I played aggressive and had some ups and downs, the funny part was I suffered my downs with some of my best hands KK got pummled by TT. Then again I did my share of pounding. I believe I took out Al who had AA with my JJ that caught the set. Hmm, I guess that's a good point, I didn't place in the top 10, but I did take down a bounty. Since I have a full bottle of the gold label SoCo in the cabinet I think I'll ask Al to hold on to the bottle till Sept and pass it around so the bloggers can have one on me.

An hour passes from when I started writing

I couldn't help myself and sat around and watched the final table on the rail with the other bloggers, that was a great time. To top it off, Iggy represented the bloggers by taking 1st. Congrats Iggy!


Poker: Royal Vegas is a bust

So I registered to play in the CPC 2 on Royal Vegas at 4pm CST today. Or perhaps the twilight zone took over. I got to my desk at 4:15 after seeing the family off and found myself busted out at 280th out of 890 entrants. WTF? I can only assume that I had the start time wrong and didn't get rid of the family soon enough. that leaves me 0/2 in tournaments so far this weekend. To take a positive spin on it, I at least placed higher than last night with more opponents. Assuming I show up on time for the bloggers tourney I hope to play better there. This sure put me in a crappy mood. I think I'm gonna go watch Underworld again. Kate in black leather will get me in a better mood.

Saturday, August 28, 2004


Poker: Tonights Freeroll

I played in the $5000 freeroll on Empire this evening and was doing just fine until two things happened. First I had gotten two pair on the flop, and raised it up to take out a short stack. There was one other fellow who stayed, he caught a K on the turn but my two pair was still good until he caught his T on the river. That hurt to the tune of about 2500 chips. Next I forgot that I wasn't a big stack any more and started trying to push someone around and ended up getting myself pot-commited when I raised and noticed I only have 16 chips left behind. woops. Out 286th out of 616. Well, tomorrow is the bloggers tourney so I'm hoping that I have a much better showing than busting out at the half way mark.

After catching up on my blogs today, I noticed that Maudie played in the same tournament and did MUCH better than I did taking 4th. Congrats Maudie!

Friday, August 27, 2004


Poker: Behold, the power of 8

So I finally get the work week shut down, the boy down to sleep so I can jump online and play some cards which started with a funk because apparently everyone else already bailed for the night. *sniff* I showered today, honest guys! Ok, so I'll have to role solo and I look for a good table. I find the aptly named "Bluffers only" table to be in the realm of Party_Juicy_Goodness(tm). I end up tossing in just behind the button and of course get the crap you're supposed to get when you do that. Four hands later I catch J8s and fold them out too. Of course the deal is 8c, 8s, 4c, 7s, Ac and after the showdown I think to myself, gosh I wish I had had a pair of 8s. So, 6th hand in I get dealt... a pair of 8s. Hmm, ok so now that I've exerted my mental control over Party I guess I can play this in early position. It also seemed fortunate that there was someone at my table with '888' in their name. Obviously the stars were aligned and the entrails told of fortune and glory. So I limp in with my pair. Now would you know it, Mr. 888 raises it up to $5. I'm getting kind of bummed because I really wanted to play this hand. Lo and behold, 3 people call it before it gets back to me and I'm thinking well... 4 other people in. I do have a pocket pair, and I did get it when I asked for it. Let's play and ask for more 8s. So, I call and begin my chant, "8, 8, 8, 8" and the dealer ignored me and threw down 5c, 3c, 2h. The nerve. Well, at least he kept it under my pair so I check since I'm first to act to see what happens. 888 goes all in for 17.50 hmm, big cards or big pair? I think big cards I way over-bet the pot pre-flop which just comes off as weak to me. Apparently to everyone else too because they called the pre-flop bet. Let's see what happens now. One fold, one call, second fold, and it's now on me. I kind of wish that other fellow hadn't called, I was gonna do it. And then I think to myself, well if I was going to do it, why don't I still get in there? I then figure that the first caller has to have something to be calling with, the question that comes to mind is if it is bigger than what I have, or maybe even a set? Think, think, think, time is running out. Oh bloody hell, it's only $25 and I shove all in for 19.50 and the original caller also calls. The pots are $75.25 in the main and $4 in the side. The turn is a 6h so I'm still bigger than the board for a pair, but a 4x would suck. So we kick the chanting up to a new level and sound like the worshipers in the Temple of Doom asking for an 8 from Kali-Ma. Once again, my mental powers over the digital and ethereal succeed and the river is an 8d. My set of 8s reigns supreme and I scrape $79.25. Hmm, 6 hands tripled up... that more than met my goal for the evening (double or bust) I guess I'll go.

Now, what the heck was I thinking here? Calling a big pre-flop bet with a middle pair, and putting myself all-in after the flop behind two others that were more than eager to do the same. From a technical perspective this was just plain bad play. I completely mis-read 888, and disregarded the other opponents bet. At the very least the caller of 888's all-in had to have me beat, not much of a chance an extra $2 bet was going to scare him away. I got lucky, plain and simple. The caller had QQ in the hole and 888 had AA in the hole. I do not claim to have ESP or any other divinative abilities, but when you get something like this and you do expend some mental energy on visualizing and trying to 'cause' the outcome, you got to wonder, is there jelly in my jelly roll? And go figure, I called JW a fish (a little pot and kettle action there). Yes, I'm the font of wisdom to be sure.

And just so I could keep the balance of my karma I went and played some $0.50/$1 and couldn't hit a flop to save my soul. I think I caught every two card combination of A-T except for any pocket pairs, and couldn't get a flop to hit me. I tried playing aggressive at first and raising them up pre-flop but I'd either miss completely or a dreaded over card (or two) would come up. Then I tried limping in after about $10 worth of misses. That didn't help either. I'll presume the poker gods were angry with my earlier play and have cursed me for the rest of the day. Hopefully my tithe of $19 will pacify them at least until after the blogger tourney on Sunday.

Thursday, August 26, 2004


Poker: Tournament Time

So this weekend has 3 multi-table tournaments in store for me. The first is a $5K freeroll on Empire on Saturday. Next up is a the first College Poker Championship tournament on Royal Vegas about mid-day on Sunday. Last and certainly not least, is the Bloggers tournament Sunday evening. I wonder if there's like a special exercise or diet plan one should follow for dealing with the thought of planting ones ass in a chair for an extremely long time. ;)


General: More Gen Con fallout

Blizz just dropped an email on our Gen Con mailing list that had about the most humorus thing I've read in a long time. Originally posted on the Skull Davan LJ Community:
12:11 pm - Finally, something to post by beldar

From time to time I feel like I'm living in an SP strip (and that's not always a good feeling), and I've been wanting to post whenever I've had a "Davan moment."

Well, this comes close, as my girlfriend Wendy, the_dark_snack , had a "PeeJee moment" at GenCon:

As you might know, the con was held in the Indiana Convention Center, which is connected to the RCA Dome, home of the Indianapolis Colts, who played a preseason game with the Jets (and lost) the Saturday of the con.

After the Cthulhu for President rally Saturday night, Wendy (in her Miskatonic U. cheerleader skirt she made) came across this family walking down one of the main halls, exiting the game by going through the convention center. The mother looked down to her preschool daughter and asked, "Now honey, what did we say these people are?"

"Godless heathens," the child dutifully replied.

"And where will they go?" mother asked.

"Straight to Hell," the child answered.

Hearing this, Wendy turned around, crouched to look the tyke in the eye and said, "And if you like, we can take you with us!"

Then she just walked on, leaving the family to mull over her offer. =)


General: Gen Con - True Dungeon Pics

True Dungeon is pretty much the coolest thing to happen to roleplaying at a convention. Take a walk through dungeon with props, traps, encounters, and puzzles and unleash a party of gamers upon it and you've got what has become an instant success. I've played both years so far, and eagerly anticipate next year. This year two of my friends got to work with the True Adventures crew as DMs for the Dungeon and while we didn't get to see much of them (except for the way late night/early morning settlers games) we were all glad for their presence. One of them, Greywalker, took the following snaps of the dungeon and the groups he took through it. There shouldn't be any spoilers here so I'm not to worried about those folks attending SoCal having their experience diminished.

The Dungeon during construction (it's much darker when you're actually going through it):

These are some of the groups of people who went through the dungeon lead by my friend Greywalker (wearing the silver or green cloak depending on which side it was flipped to):

Last, but not least, this is a group shot of the directors, stage hands, and DMs for this years True Dungeon event.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004


General: The Bourne Legacy

Being sick gives you plenty of time to catch up on your reading, or at least it does me in between bouts of unconsciousness. I wrapped up The Bourne Legacy by Eric Van Lustbader which was a new novel in the Jason Bourne series originally created by Robert Ludlum. A short time ago when I first started the book I had made the comment that for the most part it annoyed me that the author kept rehashing history from the previous books. That still annoys me. Regardless, Lustbader does spin a tale that seems born (no pun intended) out of the events of today's world and sets our relentless hero on a course that has only one obvious conclusion. Don't get me wrong, Jason Bourne is back and still hard as a coffin nail despite moving on in years from a timeline perspective. The scenario in which the story unfolds is somewhat exciting but extremely predictable. I'd give the book a 5 out of 10 since there's only so much ground you can cover with an aging hero and personally the concept of the uber-spy is something that appeals to me. Probably because in all things, aside from the fantastic physical events, these stories tend to always be about knowledge and its power. I always wonder if the authors know how the characters are going to get out of a situation they get into before hand, or if they put them in the situation and then work on getting them out. I like to think it would be the later as it would tend to provide a little more art into the story telling rather than contrived scenarios just to meet an end.

Anyway, I'm now moving on to the new Margaret Weis book, Amber and Ashes which is the beginning of a new Dragonlance trilogy following up from the War of Souls. As I understand it, this first book will focus on Mina and if ever there was a female badass for the side of evil she was it. It will be interesting to see where the stories take her now that the Dark Queen was defeated in her last attempt to enter the physical realm of Krynn. If you've been looking for this book, I would expect it to hit bookshelves very soon. I was able to pick up my copy at GenCon where it was released and get it signed by Margaret. Now I just need to find a hardbacked copy of The Annotated Legends and have that signed as well.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004


Poker: Gen Con WSOP

With much anticipation this year, especially after becoming much more involved in playing poker and improving my poker skills in general I was anxious to play in the poker tournament this year at Gen Con hosted by GameStation. I had almost sabotaged myself by scheduling an overlapping event for the first day of the tournament qualifiers but had fortunately been able to reschedule another game to start earlier.

The tournament was scheduled to run from 8pm until 12am playing to elimination down to the final 3, or three highest chip counts at 12am, which ever came first. The top three finishers from the three qualifiers would then play a nine handed final tournament that would have prizes and awards that would total up to $1000 for the 1st place finisher. There could not be a cash prize for legal reasons, but that's ok.

Each qualifier had 200 players (actually a little more than that, since all three events were sold out by the evening of the first one, and some folks were allowed to sit by paying with generic tickets to fill out a few empty seats. The first qualifier had 203 players. I was a bad blogger in that I didn't record any notes despite the fact that I had brought a note pad and pen with me to the event. I'll just have to let my hazy memory recall the details as best as possible.

Each level was 30 minutes long with a max of 8 levels, the blinds starting at 25/50 and doubling at each level. There were no antes at any point. The players in general I would say were pretty casual. I think I only ran up against one guy that I felt was a good player, everyone else fell into the average or worse category. There were definitely some Moneymaker/WPT/ESPN/Travel Channel experts out there but that just meant that it was a target rich environment.

I played through the first two levels, 25/50 & 50/100 on the same table before being moved. At the move point I was the chip leader on my table having around 14000 chips from a start of 2000. On this table the guy to my right was weak/aggressive. He was playing ok starting hands, but he would keep pushing chips in, even raising, when the flop missed him. I had him for my opening snack. Fortunately he had scraped some from the other folks at the table through aggressive play and at least one showdown with the best hand after bluffing a few folks out of a pot (and showing his trash after they folded) a few hands before that incited them to call him all the way down to the river despite some hefty bets/raises. I think it took 3 hands to bust him out once I figured out how and what he was playing. The rest of the table wasn't doing much of anything but shuffling chips around to one another.

Next to go from my table was a guy fresh out of the Navy. He talked too much and paid attention too little. The weak/aggressive guy had stolen a few pots from him and he was already wounded. As the first level wound down he got jumpy about his small stack and pushed all-in against a Hagrid looking fellow who liked to try and stare into your soul when you bet into him. Our table was down to eight as we started level 2 and the next to go was a largish fellow to the left of Hagrid. He was playing weak tight and for the most part just giving his chips away a few hundred at a time. Next to go was a Marine who was playing tight, I'm not suggesting he was weak, but I don't recall many of his hands lasting beyond the flop, even after some decent bets that he called pre-flop.

Next was a hand I do remember. I hadn't played a hand in awhile and wanted to generate some action so I played 43s with a little raise pre-flop. Hagrid checked my soul and called with the rest of the table folding. The flop was x34 and I checked. Hagrid also checked. The turn was a 4 and I believe there were now three hearts on the board. I checked and so did Hagrid. I wasn't happy about that because I figured he was on the draw initially and that would have made his flush. If I was wrong then I'm not sure what he was drawing to and if the river didn't help him, I wouldn't get any more chips out of him. The river was a big heart and since he didn't bet the turn I thought maybe he might not actually have a heart and was afraid I had the heart flush. So, when the 4th heart came up I gave a disgusted sigh, shaking my head, and rapped the table with my check a little too hard and waited. He thought for a few seconds, looked into my soul, and tossed out a pot sized bet (~1000). He had about 3000 left in his stack and I stared at his stack, then him, his cards, my cards, his cards again and said, "I don't believe you" and raised it up 2000 more figuring that he wasn't on a big pair and had just slow played his flush and if he was reacting to my false tells then this would just provoke him into pushing all in thinking I was easy money with an inferior hand. If I was gambling on how people would act and react I would have been a rich man by the end of the night. He quickly raised all in to my raise and I called. He turned over an A high flush that he did indeed have on the turn and was visibly stunned when I showed my house. After he recovered, he shook my hand and said I played that well and left. A nice guy to be sure, and basically the last guy I busted out that left in a semi-pleasant mood. They added a couple of guys to our table to bring us back up to 8 and then shortly after busted up the table and moved us to some other tables.

On the new table, I was not the chip leader. I had about 14k in chips, and the chip leader had 21k. I vowed to make his chips mine if I could. The problem was he was a good player and was playing tight and aggressive. I was able to out play him on a decent pot with a high card scare but after that I didn't get any more chips from him. As an aside note, always protect your hand. The chip leader got heavily invested in a pot with one all-in from a short stack pre-flop and while calling a second all-in accidentally pushed his cards into the middle with some of the other mucked cards from folded hands. When he went to flip over his cards to show before the turn and flop, he realized what he had done. The table was pretty relaxed and allowed him to peek at the two cards that were closest to him and see if they were his. Unfortunately, they were not and he lost about a quarter of his stack (~5k) to that.

After that point he wasn't in many hands and the cards started slapping me in the face again and more people were eliminated. When the table broke up, I was the chip leader for the table with 24k in chips and moved to another table where I was now about 3rd in stack size. This was about level 4. On this new table, the chip leader was a maniac. A very lucky maniac. The table was talking about weird bullshit plays like calling bets/raises pre-flop blind with 93o and catching his set or house by the river. I figured anyone playing like that wouldn't have made it this far so he must be playing some legit hands but really building a rep with the crazy stunts and lucky draws. Then I watched him knock out three people pulling one of these stunts.

He declared he was playing this hand blind and after looking at my cards I cried. I had shit and folded. A couple of others raised it up pretty hefty and the blind guy called. The flop was rags and the first to act went all in, second to act also shoves all in a few thousand more than the first guy. The blind guy decides now might be a good time to look at his hand and studies it and the board for a few and calls. He had 84o in the whole and one of the board cards was a 4. This call right here convinced me of his maniac status. First to act had a pair of kings and second to act had the rockets. The turn was a blank, and the river was an 8. The table erupted and I just sat there in awed silence trying to figure out how this guy was still in this thing.

A few turns later I get A6s in mid position and call the BB. It folded around to the maniac who raises and folds back around to me and I call. The flop was xAx. None of my suit but other than the A, pretty much rags, I think it was 3/4. I'm first to act so I put in a pot sized bet, ~3000, that he calls. The turn is no help to me, but he called my pot sized bet so I'm not sure what he might have and I check. He checks and I figure he has nothing or he would have been more aggressive. The river was a 5 which would have given the straight to 2x or 67 but I didn't put him on either of those so I shoved all-in with about 20k that he quickly calls. I figured maybe he had two pair and I just didn't see it. I show my pair of aces and he shows his 47o for a pair of fours.

After doubling up there I was solidly in the lead for chip counts as we moved into the final level. A few more people bust out and we're consolidated down to the final two tables of 9 players each. On my table is the maniac, a professor, and then everyone else. The professor scared me a little until I realized that he was just spewing garbage he'd read in some book or online without really knowing what he was talking about. I busted him out with a pair of nines. I'm pretty sure I hit my set on the flop but he was chasing what turned out to be a busted flush. The maniac went next to someone else, and then three more in quick succession to one of each of the three of us left at our table. There were 20 minutes left and there were 8 people still sitting at the other table. With the blinds at 3200/6400 I raised the concern about the table imbalance but got no relief.

I didn't think about trying the hand for hand argument until it was too late, and was too tired to think to stall by pulling shit like counting out my chips like I was going to go all in or asking my opponents to count out their chips in an effort to kill time. Instead I blinded down to about 41000 while my two opponents were at about 25k each (both nowhere near the top 3). They finally declared last hand and I was still in first place to I folded. The guy to my left checks and the third guy goes all in for the steal. The guy to my left thinking that it was a steal and might be able to get into the money calls with complete garbage. The end result is that he put the third guy into first place with about 52k in chips and similar shenanigans took place on the other table (where there were still 8 players) that put two people who split at 45k and 43k respectively and left me sitting in the cold dark 4th place with 41k in chips.

To say I was upset would be putting it mildly. I was absolutely fucking livid. In the time that I had blinded away about 15k (3, 3 handed orbits at 3200/1600) in chips not even a full orbit had occurred on the other table. I had gone from first place to fourth in minutes and in my mind, was cheated out of my seat at the final tournament.

Ultimately I was disappointed with how the final level and tables of the tournament were handled. I was not displeased with my play because I played a solid winning game that should have left me in the chip lead over 202 other people by the end of the time limit. It didn't work out and there's not much else to say about that.

I had tickets for the other two qualifiers and tried to play in the second one. I had to arrive an hour late because of other commitments and sat down just before it flipped to level 3. The table they put me at was pretty aggressive but were playing pretty tight so after the first orbit I found ATs and raised it up to 500 and caught one caller. The flop was no help and only gave me one of my suit. The caller checked to me and instead of checking like I should have I decided I would try and make a move and take down the pot with an all in. The caller thought for a little bit and decided to call. I turned over my ace high, and he turned over his kings. The turn was another of my suit and I was hopeful, but ultimately denied when neither an A or another card of my suit hit the table.

There was still a chance to rebuy but I figured that coming in an hour late and starting out short stacked wasn't a good combination. Especially considering I was still a little steamed from the previous nights events. So I left and went and played Settlers with the guys which was ultimately a better thing to do socially and personally. I didn't even bother with the third qualifier and instead scalped my ticket just before the event and went and helped my friends take down the sets and props for the event they were working over the next 9 hours. Then we played more Settlers. Catching a theme here? ;)

Monday, August 23, 2004


General: Past and Present Selves

So I'm about as sick as I've ever been with some cold/flu bug. I felt ok yesterday, but today is a completely different story. I wouldn't mind it if I could sneeze without wondering if I'm going to soil myself. Ok, you didn't need that visual, but I feel like crap and just thought I'd share my pain.

Why is it that when you're sick and need rest the most, you can't seem to get any? I've been trying to crash since about 5pm today and just can't seem to close my damn eyes. My mind is churning about a million miles a minute and along with the body aches and breathing troubles can't seem to pass into the warm embrace of oblivion.

Anyway, in reading over my notes and stuff from things I've already posted and stuff I've still got in draft mode, it occurs to me that I'm injecting an aspect of my life that doesn't get much play any more.

Back in the before time while I was living at NMSU (I'd say attending, but you have to go to class for that) one of my hobbies was Amtgard. Amtgard is a Live Action Role-Playing (LARP) game system where you play the role of a fantasy character class (My favorite was scout), dress up in garb and use padded weapons for combat. This was tons of fun and I basicly only quit playing when I moved up north because there were no groups around and it wasn't something I was going to try and form up a group for on my own (I was deep into my relationship with my girlfriend/fiancee, now wife). Anyway, as part of the role playing, players also took on character names. For me, this was Tarador. I can't honestly say where the name came from, I had been using it for awhile for AD&D games and some online stuff like MUDs and MUSHes so it was just there. And for many years I was known as Tarador to pretty much everyone except for my immediate family. Time moves on and except for my close friends for whom my ties go back to that point in my life (and new friends associated with that group) that name isn't one I use much any more.

While googling around about Amtgard I noticed that there are a couple of groups in the area now. Being that I need to get out and exercise more, I may look into that again. Of course, I'm old now and not nearly as fast and skilled as I was when I was 18. However, age and trechery will beat youth and vigor any day ;)


General: Baby Wears Black

I blame this completely on Flynn. During a much too late to be awake conversation as we were trying to go to sleep a few hours before we wanted to be up for more gaming he threw out the opening snippet of lyrics to Sir Mix-A-Lot's song "Baby Got Back" (I can't honestly remember why now) and I thought it would be amusing if the song were tweaked to be about goth chicks (of which we had seen a few gorgeous ones wandering around the con) and of all the things that got stuck in my head until I could spit it out, this was it. So, for better or worse, here it is. Aside from turning this out the part that scares me is that I used some references I didn't even know I knew. There's a reference to a character from Underworld the movie (Kate Beckinsale, yummy) and Vampire: The Requiem. Go figure.

Baby Wears Black
Tarador (adapted/spoofed from Sir Mix-A-Lot’s Baby Got Back)

Oh my god, Becky, look at her skin
It is so pale
She looks like one of those corpses in the morgue
Who understands those gamer types
They only talk to her because she looks like a hot vampire, ok?
I mean her skirt
It’s just so short
I can’t believe how tight her top is
It’s just so out there
I mean, it’s scary
Look, she’s just so goth

I like goth chicks and I can not lie
You other brothers can’t deny
That when a girl walks in with garters and lace
And leather boots in your face
You get sprung
Wanna pull up front
Cuz you notice that belly was pierced
And stockings that barely reach the skirt she’s wearing
I’m hooked and I can’t stop staring
Oh, baby I wanna get with ya
And take your picture
My homeboys tried to warn me
But with that tattoo you got
Me so horny
Ooh, rub that pale skin
You say you wanna share your friend?
Well use me, use me
Cuz you ain’t that average groupy

I’ve seen them walkin’

The hell with romancin’
She’s tight, white, got it goin’ like dyn-o-mite

I’m tired of magazines

Saying tanned skin’s the only thing
Take the average gamer and ask him that
She gotta have pale skin front and back, so

Fellas (yeah), fellas (yeah)
Has your girlfriend got body gems? (hell yeah)
Well flash it, flash it, flash that pierced skin
Baby wears black

I like’em trim with curves
And when I’m gaming with the pervs
I just can’t help myself
I’m actin like an animal
Now here’s my scandal

I wanna get you to the hotel
With your friend, I won’t tell
I ain’t talkin’ bout Playboy
Cuz those types don’t game with boys
I want ’em real, fun and freaky
So find that freaky double
Tarador’s in trouble
Two chicks at once, I’ll juggle

So I’m lookin’ at porn videos
Watchin’ these bimbos with boobs like hoes
You can have them bimbos
I’ll keep my women like Selene
A word to the vampire sistas
I wanna get with ya
I won’t cus or hit ya
But I gotta be straight when I say I wanna suck
Til the break of dawn
Baby, I got it goin on
A lot of punks won’t like this song
Cuz them posers like to hit it and quit it
But I’d rather stay and play
My stake is long and strong
And I like to play Vampire all night long

So ladies (yeah), ladies (yeah)
If you wanna roleplay my coteries
Then turn around
Take my arm
Cuz everyone’s got to know
Baby wears black

Yeah baby
When it comes to females
Cosmo ain’t got nothing to do with my selection
Only if she’s got pale skin


General: Gen Con Eye Candy

So, I've been going through the pictures captured at this years Gen Con, and here are the 'eye candy' shots. I'm working on a set from the True Dungeon event, as well as just general convention pics.

Police tape as a clothing option, I dig it

Everquest II looks like a great game

Drow elves don't get out much during the day

Vampires are an endangered species, be sure to watch their back.

Give a woman a whip and she thinks she rules the world

Sister Sarah doesn't get out of the convent much

One can only hope for long nights around the campfire

Applicants for the Imperial Harem

Evil vs. Mid-Evil?

I should have been the Tie-Fighter Pilot this year

Imperial recruiting poster


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