We have some good news and some bad news. I like saving the better news for last, because I like "happy endings"...
The bad news is that I'm going to take the month of April off from the blog. Sorry to all of my regular readers. I expect the constraints on my time are going to be absurdly high next month. That's because...
We found a house on our last trip to Dallas that we absolutely loved! and we decided to move early. You might have guessed as much from the lack of poker in the last few months. After talking about it for years, we're super-excited we finally get to do it. It's much nicer than our current house: a little larger (both house and land), much newer and also waterfront. But the new house has an awesome saltwater pool, cabana and hot tub that we can't wait to get into. Altho I'm not sure how useful a hot tub is in Texas. This house basically costs like 15-20% of what what a comparable house would cost here in CT. LOL. I generally don't like talking about my houses, so I'm not going to post any pics of the house. But I'll post a pic of the pool:
...just as an appetizer to get you guys to tune in in May. After freezing our asses off in several feet of snow this winter, a resort-like house is just what the doctor ordered. I actually have a lot of interesting stuff to talk about in the blog when I come back in May, including:
* we caught G lying... and stealing. DoubleFly goes Old School.
* why moving before the end of the school year >>> moving before the start of the school year.
* how we picked the house, and how as a pro poker player living anywhere with a high cost of living is just burning money.
* how we plan to pick up G's academics.
* generating additional streams of income away from the tables.
* more poker content that I never finished up.
* maybe some funny pics after too many pina coladas by the pool.
I was actually going to post this tomorrow as my last post, but I realized it was April Fool's Day, and I thought you guy would think I was just joking about taking the month off. Sadly I'm not joking. But I'll have plenty of interesting stuff to talk about when I come back, so make sure you come back!
I was flipping channels the other day and I noticed that Hines Ward was on Dancing with the Stars. For the gheys out there that don't watch the NFL, he's a wide receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers. And that got me to thinking about "famous" guys of Korean descent that you're most likely to have heard of.
TOP 5 GUYS OF KOREAN DESCENT THAT YOU ARE PROBABLY FAMILIAR WITH:
5. Ken Jeong - the Asian dude in the Hangover and the TV show Community. Seriously, why can't an Asian dude on the screen be cool? This dude's right up there with Andy Rooney (Breakfast at Tiffany's) and Gedde Watanabe (Sixteen Candles) in setting the image of Asian males back a few decades. Thanks buddy.
4. Steve Perry - Yup. The lead singer of Journey's mother is Korean - I'm "pretty" sure. But maybe most of you guys are so young, you probably think the best known lead singer of Journey is some Filipino dude. Um... No.
3. John Gosselin - Another halfie. Married himself a crazy bitch and gets berated on national TV every week by his woman. Then finally gets some spine to get away... and now there are rumors he's crawling back. What a "guy"!
2. Hines Ward - I knew something was a little off when my mother-in-law was asking how "Hines" was doing (in the playoffs). For a while I thought she was asking about ketchup, and that my Korean was too bad to understand what she was saying. But it's true. The dude is half Korean.
I actually got in a few hands this week... it's still way less than half my usual pace, but it beats nothing. After not having played in a while, the games feel a little "different." A couple of the psycho 3bettors don't seem to be 3betting as much any more, and a few other minor things that sadly I can't talk about. Partly because of sample size, but partly for strategic reasons - because I would just be screwing myself at the tables.
The feel of the games changes every month or two - it's very possible for people who were very successful one month to be break-even a few months later, if they don't adapt to the table conditions. So keep alert. Maybe I'll discuss this more in a later post.
In the time remaining, I have to give a shout out to my fellow Korean poker players: Andrew Song, who took down $238K in an online tourney (FT's 1.5MM Guarantee) and Nicolak for winning a live tourney in Reno for $33K. I'm just going to ride on their coat tails as a fellow Korean mid+ stakes reg. Because I've come to the sad resignation that Beelzebub's world would have to freeze over before I luckbox a major donkament. Seriously.
But I'm really happy for those guys - if *I* can't win a tourney, those guys would be at the top of my list of people who I'd like to see do well.
So on that note...
WHAT'S FOR DINNER?
Leftovers. Yup. To the victor go the spoils. And to the loser the leftovers.
We had some seafood in the freezer and Mrs. Fly decided the best way to get rid of it was to make a coconut seafood curry. Since I'm still on a low carb diet, this was all I ate. But I guess when you're married to Mrs. Fly, leftovers aren't too bad. I guess on the unlucky in cards / lucky in love equation, I got on the right side of that one.
Most of you probably know that I'm a MMB - massive mamma's boy. Since it was her birthday last week, and she likes flowers, and it's that time of year where the cherry blossoms open, and DC is "only" 5 hours away, and my brother got a great package from the Mandarin Oriental, guess what we did?
I had never seen the cherry blossoms before. Mostly because I try to avoid things that are ghey. But since we may be moving shortly (hint hint), it seemed like a good idea to spend a nice Fly family weekend in DC.
It was pretty. Probably not "schlep 5 hours" pretty, but at least I can say I finally saw it. The weekend was more about spending time with my "old" family. D was sick, so Mrs. Fly had to stay at home. That meant I could fit MammaFly and FireFly (my sister) in the car and chat on the drive down. It was nice to spend the QT with them because lately we've only seen them at larger gatherings.
My mother just turned 68. It's possible she may love to 90+ like her mother, but you never know when anyone's going to go (including me). So take a little time off from your hectic life from time to time to spend some quality time with your loved ones.
WHAT'S FOR DINNER?
I'm probably one of the biggest carnivores you'll meet... I just LOOOVE eating dead animal. Like if someone said I could live 5 years longer if I gave up dead animal, I would just say, "That's not LIVING! F. U. Beelzebub!" Now where did I put that Holy Mace +5?!? But after meal after meal after meal of dead animal, you start craving some greens. There's just something refreshing about biting into in a salad to break things up. Here's a salad - Fly style. I think there's some greens in this chef's salad... underneath all the dead animal.
As an interesting side note, in a rare "fact-checking" episode... I had thought Beelzebub was just a synonym for the devil (mostly from watching Jon Lovitz do his satan skits on SNL), but apparently there's a whole demonology. He is one of the "Seven Princes of Hell" (ironically gluttony). Being a heathen, I guess I should know who my masters are. Mu ha ha.
Since I haven't been playing much, I haven't had a lot of poker content in the blog. It occurred to me the other day that there are a lot of noobs out there who don't really know the basics. So I thought I would try and do a new segment called:
Before you put in any money in the pot, you should always consider your stack size to the size of the existing pot. Because planning the optimal bet sizing starts on the flop. Waiting until the turn is too late. A Stack to Pot Ratio is the size of your effective remaining stack to the size of the existing pot. I think most small stakes+ players are familiar with this concept. But here is another way of thinking about SPR that I've never seen in print...
This table basically says what all good players should know. That if you pot three barrels, you will eventually get 13x the pot of your stack by the end of the hand. So if you open 3bbs and get called only by the CO, there will be 7.5bbs into the pot. If you both have 100bb stacks, your SPR is 12.9. So if you pot three barrels, you will get stacks in. If you 3bet a 3bb CO steal from BUT to 11bbs, creating a 23.5bb pot, your SPR will be 3.8. You will only need 50% pot barrels to get stacks in.
Most regs will know sizing just based on experience. But sometimes, you play a multiway pot, or have non-standard effective stack sizes, or play a 3bet pot with deeper stacks. In those cases, it's good to know what sort of "average" bet sizing will get to the desired result. Obviously, if you want your river barrel to be larger, you can adjust accordingly.
So my "eastern" balanced with "western" style of parenting philosophy just got a jolt today. In the CT elementary schools, all the bright kids start getting "tracked" in the third grade. The theory is that you keep the smart kids in one class so that you don't have any slow kids holding them back. Makes a ton of sense and I agree with the philosophy 100%.
So earlier this week, they had the smarter "subset" of the kids in the class take a test to see who would get into the "advanced" classes. I'm guessing they wanted to take the top 1/3 of students (since there are three classes per grade). The problem wasn't that G did poorly on the test. That would have been somewhat bearable. The dude didn't even QUALIFY to take the test.
I want my kids to be happy. I'm not going to force my kid to go into med school or play piano or any of the other stereotypical things Asian parents make their kids do. But to fall to what I'm picturing to be the "middle of the pack" is unacceptable - that's just a stone's throw from being a retard. I think there's at least one girl who barely speaks English in his class, so WTF?!?
Another benefit of moving to Texas... not living with the shame all of next year.
It's not *that* bad tho. To be continued.
Seriously enough to make me lose my appetite...
WHAT'S FOR DINNER?
Not! C'mon! G is only in the second grade - plenty of time for me to rectify the situation. And as far as I can tell, he is a somewhat bright kid. Pretty sure Dartmouth isn't going to ask for his 2nd grade transcript as part of his application.
Thank God Mrs. Fly can make me a low carb dinner like this one to make me drown my sorrows. O wait - that's what the three glasses of wine are for. That spicy cream sauce really kicks ass - puts everything over the top.
Normally, when something you own breaks it's generally not a happy occasion. But I had one of those few losses last week that most people usually celebrate...
The 1+ year old cell phone.
I had a Blackberry Curve that was completely on the fritz - the battery would only last like an hour, I got memory errors and sometimes it would randomly turn off. Shoot! Any one or two of those would have been enough to chuck the phone. I had been planning to get one of those Android phones that everyone had been talking about... AND really looking forward to it. Maybe even having the technical capability of reading 2+2 again. Except I forgot about one thing... I'm REALLY attached to my blackberry email account. And I guess that's how they get ya!
I can't let go that email adddress!!! All my friends, relatives and former associates know me as that email. I guess I could have just told everyone I changed emails, but I'm thinking of doing something related to trading later in the year (later post), and switching emails seemed like a bad idea. So I'm stuck with the Blackberry again. Doh!
Anyway, I got the Blackberry Style this time because I always accidentally click the keys. Since the phone closes, I no longer have to worry about that. Function over form. But when I got it, it bore a really strong resemblance to a shiny woman's compact (especially when it was off). Double Doh! All I need now is a man bag and a skirt, because with this phone and my man boobs, I think I can pass for a woman. A beastly woman, but a woman nonetheless.
WHAT'S FOR DINNER?
Not sure if you guys have seen "the Best Thing I Ever Ate", but basically, the Food Network personalities talk about something awesome they ate. So in one segment, they go visit the head chef of Le Bernardin (probably the best seafood restaurant in the country). The chef says his secret to getting the fish skin super-crispy is to lightly dust it in fine flour.
So Mrs. Fly decided to surprise me with this pan-fried trout. Trout is not one of my favorite, but this was actually, really good. Especially with the extra-crispy skin... because normally, trout skin isn't one of the better fish skins out there. This low carb diet isn't so bad after all.
Decent week (win rate-wise), considering I barely played. After my red line post the other day, I noticed that I had a positive red line for my small sample. This is very unusual for me. OMG! What is this world coming to when a nit has a positive red line?!? Maybe those Mayan calendar rumors are true... and the world is coming to an end in 2012.
Actually, it was just one huge non-showdown hand, where I bet the river with the nuts in a 3bet pot. You can all take that deep breath now.
WHAT'S FOR DINNER?
Obviously, I should have put in this crab cake dinner, before I talked about the eggs benedict with the leftover crab cakes. Doing all my move-related stuff and also doing all my side-business-related stuff (later post) is making me feel a little harried. I obviously put the cart before the horse. Sucks being senile.
But the crab cakes were pretty good. I'm pretty sure I wrote about them at least once or twice already. Obviously in a neighborhood where one can't get whole fish, finding fresh lump crabmeat is going to be pretty hard. I think there might be a place like 25 mins away, but we're not schlepping out there just to get crabmeat.
Not sure how things are at the lower stakes, but at 2/4+, there might only be like one reasonably fishy dude per table. And a lot of times, even tho they play like 35/10, their win rate is still a "respectable" MINUS 10 ptbb/100 or so. But with a table full of winning players and one -10ptbb fish, the math still doesn't work out. Keep in mind that rake is 12ptbb/100 at a 2/4 table. I'll be sitting there with my 1.8ptbb win rate, and there will be a few regs better than me and a few regs worse than me. So theoretically, if you add up all the win rates at the table and the rake, by definition, you must get ZERO. Poker is a zero sum game.
So let's see... eight winning regs with an average 1.5ptbb win rate, plus one fish with a -10ptbb win rate, minus the rake of 12ptbb equals... MINUS 10ptbb for the table. So something's got to give. Sadly, the rake's not going to change. So everyone else's average win rate has to be lowered to make the equation for the table to work out. And the way it works out is that the average win rate for the regs gets closer to zero. Thank god for rakeback!
So "table selection" is more than just finding a "weaker spot" at the table. Continued later.
WHAT'S FOR BREAKFAST?
Usually around now (week 4 of a low carb diet), I start feeling super-lethargic and dead animal starts tasting a little meh. Wat! Who said that?!?
But Mrs. Fly has been awesome about making me something "a little different" every so often to keep my interest in the diet. These eggs Benedict were really good - she made the hollandaise sauce from scratch and served the eggs over leftover crab cakes and some ham. Sure, I may keel over from a cholesterol overdose... But I'm going to die with a smile on my face!
A few weeks ago, there was an interesting discussion on the red line. Here's an excerpt from a post from Andrew Song...
I got into using PT later then most and when I finally got to see my graphs, all my profits were coming from red-line first few years of my poker career. After a life threatening downswing after UIGEA, I talked a bunch and compared graph/stats with players who I respected and came to a conclusion that what I was doing wasn't optimal. I then put a ton of work to have my profit come from showdown and break even in non sd. I finally got what I wanted by late 08 and stuck to blue line game for majority of 2009. That year ended up being my worst year in my career if I exclude my winnings from playing live. I'm sure 40tabling had to hurt my hourly as well. Sometimes in early 2010, I came across GoMuk's well and was stunned to see that there's someone completely murdering the game with a style I tried so hard to give up. I insta PM'd him for coaching but he wasn't available since he was booked for next few months. Still, with the new found knowledge that red-line indeed works, I played. I ended up booking 70k month on February playing only 2/4 and 3/6. I think I won something like 140 buyin that month with 60k red-line profit. It was a revelation. Poker suddenly became fun for me again. Next month, Gomuk told me he's open for coaching and I took it. To be very honest I didn't learn much. I do believe that Gomuk is the best FR coach in the planet. It just didn't work for me since I was either too good 8-) or our approach to the game was very similar to start with. I did learn valuable skill that changed my winrate once and for all. Table selecting. That alone made the coaching worth way more then the dollar I paid. I guess I was a idiot thinking table selection is for pussies. I don't know how I got side tracked and ended up writing this tl;dr story. I bluffed my stack away in the $2000 FTOPS while writing this. I'm sure talking about red-line had to do with it. but what I wanted to say was that red-liners >>> blue-liners. I can't comment on which would be better for winrate because neither is the answer. If you want to talk about winrate, bum hunting would be the key.
What I do know is that red-line players are ALOT more tougher to play against. I much prefer playing tim0thee, nanonoko or robsainter then battling it out with I win flips, GoMuk, playinwitdreams or any reg that fights to win every pot. This alone pretty much should be the reason why redline > blueline. I do have long-term goals in poker to be able to reg toughest line up in 6handed+ 5k games and I think red-line is what will take me there unless the game changes drastically. In that case, I got more work to do.
I think Andrew's post is one of the better posts I've seen in the MSFR FT regs' thread (altho that may not be saying much). The only thing I would disagree on is that I prefer playing vs people who are too aggro than well-balanced. Maybe because it's easier to win a monster pot off of those guys. But that may just be my style of play.
The games have definitely gotten tougher the past few months, and part of it is the increased aggression in the games. In the past, people would have folded when they knew they were beat - now they raise (and barrel off) to try and get folds from better hands. People barrel any high card flop and they certainly keep barreling any overcards or scare cards. 3bet bluffing in position with playable hands is becoming the norm... just to name a few examples.
However, I can't really see the FR games getting that much more aggressive. Poker is a game of balance. Raising your cbet from 50% to 60% will most likely be profitable. But raising your cbet from 80% to 90% will probably be lighting money on fire. The same principles apply to 3 betting, barreling, postflop raising, betting when checked to, and any other form of aggression. But one of the most interesting things about poker is how the game changes, and seeing which of the regs (including myself) adapts the best.
My "shocker" post from the other day got me a little nostalgic for the pro wrestling we used to watch when we were kids. We never saw any of the "real" matches that were on pay-per-view. Mostly because we just got off the boat and were too busto. But it was still a lot of fun watching the "promo" matches as a little kid. My bother and I each had a twin bed that happened to be placed right next to each other... so it was kind of like a square. Hmm... a square elevated platform that you can jump on... Hmm... what are some impressionable young latchkey kids going to do on such a platform... Anyway, we had tons of fun "wrestling". Maybe not too fun for my sister, who was like 4 years younger, and who really couldn't defend herself. Now who can we try out Bob Backlund's chicken wing on???...
THE FIVE GREATEST PROFESSIONAL WRESTLERS OF MY GENERATION:
5. Jimmy "SuperFly" Snuka I had never seen anyone jump in the air like that. I'm shocked that my siblings never had to go to the hospital considering how many times we landed on each other. I was always much bigger, so no worries on my end. Kind of sad in his later years when he started developing that gut, but you know what? I should be the last person on earth to start hating on someone because of their gut. In tribute, if I ever start multi-accounting, I'm going to sign up as "SuperFly." Altho now that I think about it, those animal skin tights are a little ghey. Maybe not.
4. Ultimate Warrior
He was a little after my time, but I remember thinking he had the coolest face paint ever. I vaguely remember he had some cool entrance music too. And he LOOKED like a pro wrestler... not like Andre the Giant, Sergeant Slughter or any of the other lame Ps.O.S. that were too lazy to work out. Again, I guess I shouldn't be hating on anyone for being flabby. But in my defense, if my appearance was job-related, I would be shredded right now. Umm... yeah...
3. Iron Sheik
What a brilliant stroke of marketing. I think this was after the whole Iranian hostage situation. Obviously not politically correct, but the dude was awesome how he would start anti-American slurs during his rants. Really made you want to hate him. And I loved that Camel Clutch.
2. Road Warriors (aka Legion of Doom)
I can't remember what the smaller wrestling network's name was that the Road Warriors were signed to, but I liked these guys the best (even more than Ric Flair, who I always thought was kind of ghey). They were the best tag-team EVER. Such an awesome image - with the face paint, the shoulder pads, and I think that was the first time I ever heard IronMan. Doesn't get any better than a little Sabbath to fire up a crowd.
1. Hulk Hogan
There's a reason why he's probably the most well-known wrestler of my generation. I guess nowadays, the nod will go to the Rock, but towards the tail end of my pro-wresting viewing, he was the hands-down best. No one could give a "I'm going to rip your face off" pitch like Hulk Hogan. And that ripping the shirt off, like the Incredible Hulk was sheer genius. Hulkamania's runnin' wild!
G seems to like wrestling, so I'm actually looking forward to reliving my childhood with him. And from what little I saw, Ric Flair came back to pro wrestling, and so did Hulk Hogan. The Rock is also back, so I can see what he's about. I wonder if I still remember how to do that chicken wing... Hmm... Where's G???
I decided to finally clean up some of my "posts in progess." Obviously, I eat dinner every night, and maybe only a fraction of the time, I'll remember to take a picture. But even still, I have tons of food pictures that I've uploaded to the blog from as far back as a year ago, but that I've never used. So I decided to do a cornucopia of meals, of the orphaned meals that never quite found a home in the blog.
Usually, "leftovers" means crappy food, but Mrs. Fly always finds a way to make it interesting. This looks like crab cakes, scallops, and some jambalaya-like thing. And a side of veggies for #2. Thanks to Blogger for randomly rotating the photo.
This was from a long time ago, but I think this was Mrs. Fly's Chicken paprika. I probably talked about it already, but Mrs. Fly got this out of the Williams Sonoma cookbook - I think it was probably the best recipe out of that book.
Ahh... I remember this awesome shrimp in a coconut sauce. Maybe it was curry. not sure why Mrs. Fly hasn't made it since, but it was pretty awesome. But it looks like I can still see some rice on the lower right side.... She obviously forgot DoubleFly's Rule of Sauce.
OMG. I think this must've been leftovers of two batches of my crappy ribs over the summer. I'm really debating if I should bother moving my smoker to Dallas. In CT, my ribs were just an embarrassment. But in Texas, the neighbors may get pitchforks and torches and chase us out of the state, for making such meh ribs. Thank you again Blogger... maybe the rotation will cause people to not notice the food.
Ahhh! Can't go wrong with fajitas. Beef and chicken. Thanks Mrs. Fly. What's the rest of the family going to have?!? Altho after eating way too much dead animal the other night, a salad is actually sounding quite appetizing.
As you may have guessed, I played ZERO hands (again). This is easily my lowest production stretch. I've gone on vacation for a two weeks in the past, but I was always able to get in at least a *few* hands. I'm going to try and ease back into it, by playing some 1/2 next week. Maybe I'll even have some interesting *poker* content, since this IS A POKER BLOG, after all!
WHAT'S FOR DINNER?
I'm in Dallas (again), and I think we're close to finding a place. But we ate at this all-you-can Korean BBQ place, and I have a little indigestion so I decided to come down to the hotel lobby to putz around. Korean BBQ is awesome in general, but Korean food tends to be salty and I just ate waaay too much. I was burping garlic all night. I didn't overeat by the Old DoubleFly standards, but one of the things about going low carb is that your appetite starts to shrink. At this all-you-can eat place, they bring out tons of meat and you cook it at your table. But if you cook too much and have excessive leftovers, they charge you more. What was weird is I told Mrs. Fly that they brought out too much meat the second time around and we should send some back. Mrs. Fly for some bizarre reason says, "no way! we're finishing this!" I'm sitting there thinking, "okay doppelganger, I have no idea what you did with Mrs. Fly, but I'm going to play along, until I figure out what's going on."
Maybe she thought she was speaking to Old DoubleFly? Maybe she thought I would interpret this as foreplay? The thought of unlimited dead animal is quite the turn-on after all.
Or maybe she was just remembering what happened earlier in the day... we were talking to a local, and I was saying how I just can't get full on a 16oz steak. In Connecticut, I would have gotten the "WTF kind of primal mutant are you?!?" But in Texas, the guy beams, gives me a high five and says "you're my kind of guy!"