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So Much To Sea

Posted by Ed Reif» on - - 0 comments»

Spending Your Derelict You(th) at the Poker table-The Helium Report


It's been a real crazy week playing my own version of The Asian Poker Tour---Macau is where it's at. What happEND in Vegas now happens in Macau.



Poker is not a form of gambling---but Macau gambling is a form of poker; and the Chinese are just getting to know holdem and took huge gambles that rarely, but eventually, payed off---But anyone who gambles in poker can get lucky on one hand 100% of the time.

Sex And The Gambling Man In Macau-Denial is a river one outter.
A little past playing good is playing badly. I couldn't help myself. It was like potato chips---I couldn't just eat one....I eventually ended up like all the other JOES, played ATC, any two cards...but was hitting flops and winning not just pots but chips. I call that Card Lust.

My malignant optimism got to me when I switched games and went to Blackjack. afterall, In Blackjack, there is always a correct decision, a perfect strategy right?
The glass wasn't half full, it wasn't big or fast enough. I started drinking the koolaid---the cult of the amateur--- Chinese players were drinking gallons.

They played 53 a Bacarat hand like Aces and got lucky. I got dealt black jack hands 73 off suit, I figured I'd move over to Black Jack if these cards were running "good"...and they did!(Magical Thinking)

The Fish Out Of Water

NLH poker is a western game and new to most Chinese, they play it like a house game....and for a few hours I switched to Black John (Jack and I were on a first name basis) I did it---and got away with it because the poker police were eating donuts.


My brain is the most powerful computer, on tilt, My brain is the most powerful broken computer.

I saw guys call down with Ace high and win! You can't spell manslaughter without laughter--I was hysterical laughing as these guys put me on tilt; eating what they killed was so money.
I abandoned my small ball poker style and Get Rich Slowly attitude--because when you lose it quickly you want to get it back quickly...that's what separates the Joes from the Pros---being able to put the brakes on.
As Mickey Mantle said in his 1985 autobiography you keep aiming for the fences, you're bound to strike out a lot ." Small ball poker avoids the MIS (move in specialists) and let them have their hands. Black Jack, however, is a war of attrition. I passed the test and failed the class---Back to gambling school! Time to re-read my post on The Great Poker Lobotomy: Nothing is the hardest to do in Poker.

The Impatience of Patience kicked in. The House Money "Effect"

There was Mr. Right and Mr. Right NOW---Mr. Ed Reif very robustly wanted instant gratification right now, and wanted to be patient in the future.

Instead of inspiring caution, when I risked money, my brains' typical response to this uncertainty was to sharply reduce the importance of the future in my decision-making, an effect I know in Behavioral Finance as hyperbolic discounting.
School psychologists call this ADD, the boutique white male diagnosis of "Poor Executive Function!" Nevertheless: You can always tell a poker player, but you can't tell them much---about holdem being a game of position, about holdem being a game of (selective) aggression, about folding 60% of your starting hands, the invisible way to win.

Furthermore, I broke my rule of playing other games: Because risk of ruin is 100% sure over time with House Games like Black Jack.

Although I had a few disciplined BlackJack hit and runs up 11,000 at one time, putting chips on my front money deposit account at the Wynn, I gave "their" money back which was actually---The House Money Effect getting to me--- with chip overload of playing loose with their money--actually it is ALL my money once won!

The Sex of Macau Poker Reward Circuit Runs on Dopamine

Forget about the degeneracy that surrounds Macau poker---the addiction, drug and alcohol use, depression, and sleep deprivation. After all, Few things are harder to put up with than a good example--- If it wasn't for pimps, prostitutes, and hustlers there wouldn't be No Limit Poker as we know it today. What went on in Vegas now goes on in Macau...and in three months, they'll be a poker room in Cambodia!


Let There Be Flop-The Rise and Fall of John Delorean

There were a few crews--Finnish, Australian and American, plus the Rouge Traders, a Swede in particular, named Leo, who stayed at Augusters Backpack lodge like most grinders---just a bed to sleep, so you could play more poker!



Leo and I hung out a while--He was a great strong player who got paid off on 70% of his hands.
Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie, Oy Oy Oy---The Aussies were beasts--Poker rewards aggression and they were the 800 lb gorillas. I had to leave--- couldn't take all the Steve Irwin accents of "Heaps" of annoyance and "Cheers Mate" after taking down pots uncontested.

The Finns set me up at The Star Galaxy, probably the nicest poker room, right up there with The Wynn---
I have the button, and raise with Pocket Jacks. I get re-raised by the small blind and re-raised by a guy in middle position. I call...and the flop is AA Rag. He checks I bet they both Call. I Say Go to Helsinki and shove all in on the turn and get a call from Pocket 99 Nines! and I hit it and quit it, doubling up to $4000, and leaving. They were speaking Finnish during the hand!!! MY new found Finn friend Mike was laughing but I didn't find it funny. I never sat with them again.


Kept hearing stories about the legendary Sauna 18. After this Turkish Guy known as FY, pushed with AQ at The Grand Lisboa, I called with AK, and he sucked out...and said, "I'm going to Sauna 18" the way John DeLorean said "I'm going to Disneyland." as I remembered those fabulous 80's. They don't pay those chicks for the sex---they pay them to leave!

I had another crack at him at the Wynn, with top pair, and he hit his draw! and again he took chips from me again after telling me about Girl Number 245 in the fish bowl. Happy Thanksgiving Turkey! Glad I could finance your 60 minute "relationship". "Are you going back there to Sauna-Lounge 18? " I asked, but could care less. "You bet", he said. FY eventually gave all of his chips to an Indian guy, a local, who played Smashmouth Poker.

I had to re-frame the losses with Lift Ticket FY: It's not success or failure only outcomes. It's not about winning or losing, but excelling and making good decisions in spite of the outcome.. I know I had this Turkey beat pre flop with the Ak, and the draw, well that's poker.

The Kung Fu Book of Caine Says Be careful When you bluff bad players who only look at their cards and don't read the board.

Don't call us we'll call you

Poker without cards---bluffing didn't work that well---There were too many calling stations.
The cards are just there to confuse the bad players, the Helen Keller’s. It’s not what you look at that matters but what you see. You don’t need cards to win. You need cards to lose. Yet the Chinese only play their hand--they don't read the texture of the board. In this case,I needed cards to lose, firing three bullets into a pot and getting called with Ace high, and me with Air.

Money Is Poker's Report Card--Online University--Poker Stars, the Harvard of Holdem

I decided to stop playing bingo and see more flops: Most Macau players, after all are experience rich and technique poor. They most likely are gambling not betting---so I switched gears and saw more flop. Things don't even out over time, they even out with the number of hands you see.
Last year I did online course work at Full Tilt and PokerStars, I was 60,000 chips short of graduating before I dropped out of the online poker scene to be a cash game specialist.

I made some dough this week in Macau---but spent it on the cost of doing business---chips and the overhead---hotel food and that stupid house game called BlackJack., waiting for my table to open up at The Wynn!

Saying, "It's only a game" is the lesser known, I don't have a dream speech. Yet the aim of NLH is not just winning, but progress. Inspiration increases (to excel) when the left brain gets good at telling the right brain what to do--Ok brain, listen up--stick to poker! They call it Blackjack because the word f_ck was taken.

I flew out of Macau this morning and am back in Bangkok. I had some of the most magnificent luck in Macau ---QUAD nines twice in a night.

First, with pocket nines hitting the flop hard with Quads, later that same evening (actually 1am) morning ---NEXT, at a high stakes 25/50 table on my second hand.... I had $3000 behind me (short stacked) I am in position last to act. It's a family pot (everyone is in) for a bump of 150. the flop is Queen 9 9, and I am last to act with K9.

The raiser wants to pick up the dead money with the scare cards 9 9 (It usually works), so he throws in a $2000. everyone folds, I hesitate and call. on the turn it's a nine-- He has to figure I don't have a nine because there are only four in the deck! So he throws in a $5000 chip---I only have 1000 left! I say I call--I have the absoulute cold stone nuts! The best possible hand. He mucks (probably a Queen full house).
Americon-Can't Put Chinese Players On TILT

Press 1 for English! Couldn't push any buttons with my banter---Nobody understood me!


For the beginner, everything is even money, when you don't know any better. Replacing that with true odds is the goalmost of these guys are learning the game. Keeping the ick in Dick, the c#nt in country-- I played the ugly Americon poker player , speaking English loudly and slowly to get my ideas across---
Betting eventually had to do my talking. It's a slang that spit in the street, rolled up its sleeves and said "Let's Get To Work!" I got action...and the bad beats were amazing--- I had Kings cracked five or six times with random donks bluffing off their chips and hitting cards on the turn and river. It was hard to read most players because if they didn't know what they were doing, I didn't either.

Bad Beats Happen-we retrofit a narrative to tell ourselves that we should have seen it coming because we ourselves could not have been that stupid. And yet, we are no better prepared for the next one.

No Limit Hold ‘em or NLH is designed to have a high luck factor that can quite easily lead to a sort of pathological optimism. It’s a fast, easy to understand game that pulls down huge bucketfuls of short-term luck. In fact, playing because you are “feeling lucky” is (almost) the right way to play.

Going for broke, however, is more poetic than calculating the odds. And crunching numbers. We really don't have any Poker enemies. It's just that some of our best friends are trying to kill us. I had this Aussie Guy Hudson shove over the top of my raise with my pocket Aces verses his Ace 6 and hit trip 6's on the flop--He racked me on that one.

Neurons that wire together fire together---Making money and then making money again is our chemical romance. It produces a “desire to continue”. We are all wired to "invest". Being Digital. It’s not about atoms or how little people behave, it’s about the juice, The Card Lust, where people and bits of information meet.
Poker is a game of situations, like milk, with an expiration date stamped right on the carton. There are no perfect strategies. Poker history doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme! I had AK verses A5 with an ace on the flop, and the guy with the dry aces raises, and I re raise all in to prevent his draw and he calls! This is the kind of attitude here---I don't give a F$ck--He even said I know you have AK but I call....He had three outs! and he hit. yet this is precisely the kind of player you want at the table.

They say the Indian Rain dance works because the Indians never stop dancing. Therefore, I was bound to run into good hands---because I never stopped playing poker!

Here's the Wealth/Helium Report:


Don't go broke in an un-raised pot---

In addition to the above, I had QUAD Aces--I limped with a dry Ace A4, and the flop comes AA6. First position bets out a pot sized bet of $150 to steal the small pot. I Smooth call, everyone else gets out. The turn is another Ace--that makes Quads for me, and again he bets out, this time $200. I smooth call. The river is a deuce. Obviously he has a 6, and this time he makes a huge bet og $1000. I am short stacked and go all in-He has me covered,a nd I show him the bad news.

Another cool lightning- in - a -bottle moment---


I get seated at a full table of nine. They make an extra 10th seat...so I am the tenth person. I muck my first big blind.

The second hand I get 6 8 off suit and limp in. I flop the nut straight and check in first position. Everyone, and I mean everyone calls this guys 100, as do I, the turn is a 3, so the board shows3457. I am sure someone has a six now, because the betting gets crazy.

Again, in first position I check, and then seat 2 bets out his straight to the 6 with $200. This time the rest of the table gets the message except one guy, who calls, as do I. The river is a 2, with no flushes out ther the board reads 23457. I have the nuts and give them the bad news---"I'm all in", but they both call me.


And I get paid off...And this is the lesson I learned in Macau, against Chinese players---They will call you and pay you off every time, consequently bluff outs don't usually work. I had a guy call my bluff, with a flush, and a straight on the board, and he won with Ace high! He called my all in! and I was stacked. Bluff Outs--Additional "outs" you might have if the player reads the board and sees scare cards dididn';t work.

Bob, I got a bad feeling on this one, all right? Ship It Anyway.


When I first arrived , wheels down, I was up so much, it was ridiculous. I hit everything. No kidding. My first hand I get dealt pocket sevens, and get re-raised by AK. I go all-in, and it's an ace and a race. I win. The next hand, I get Ace King, but I am in early position and call.

The Button raises to $150. I call instead of going berserk---although the button begged me" Go all-in again". You got to be willing to die in order to live in NLH (No Limit Poker).
Even though most of the players didn't speak a bit of English, I quote from Platoon" Bob, I got a bad feeling on this one, all right?" I don't know if this guy has ever seen Platoon, at least not an un-pirated knock off version.


AND I did have a bad feeling ...that is, until the flop hit me hard with Ace King, but there were two clubs...This time I said to the guy I check. He threw in $200. I went all-in. Since he saw me shove all in with Pocket Sevens, he really couldn't put me on a hand, so he called and flipped pocket Queens. I won....and then Hit and ran. Hit it and Quit it. Tripled up and hit the road over to the Wynn to make a deposit...
Then I sat down at the Wynn, a 10-20 game, and my first hand in the big blind --I turn a wheel with ACE Five and felt this American Bryan, who quit school to play poker. he looks like John McEnroe, with the head band and the wild hair.
I called a raise out of position and I know the way he plays--he will make a continuation bet no matter what---The flop comes 23Jack Rainbow , and I have Ace 5 suited. he makes it 300 and I smooth call with four outs! and the miracle four comes on the turn and I check. He bets, I go all in-he insta calls, with Pocket Aces. he's still drawing live to a split pot if a five comes, but it doesn't and I double up---back to the Grand Lisboa after that.

We are born broke, and we die broke, everything in the middle is fluctuation.

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