Thursday, September 25, 2014

"I Cannot Beat Queen-Ten"

The TBC Invitational, Part 3

This is the third and final part of this night of poker, and continues right where part 2 (see here) ended.

Then came the only hand that I really got into with Tony.  Not sure how it started, I think I might have called a raise with the evil hand, Queen-10 suited.  In a game like this, there’s bragging rights attached if you can win a pot with your friend’s most hated hand.  There were four of us, including the aforementioned Asian woman.  I think she might have been the raiser.  I called her flop bet chasing a gut-shot, and that bet had put the Asian woman all-in, so there was no turn bet.  It was still four of us on the river, but only three of us had any more money left to bet. The board was King-high and I needed a Jack to complete the straight.  The river was a Queen instead.  I checked. The guy in seat 4—the one interested in our blogs—checked.  And then, I had a brain fart. 

I knew the next player was the lady who was all in.  So I either forgot that Tony was still in the hand, or I thought he had been first to act and had checked.  Because I thought Seat 4’s check ended the action.  And so, I turned over my hand.  As soon as I did, I saw that Tony was grabbing chips to bet.  Shit, the action wasn’t over, it was on him.  I think my reaction was pretty good, I slammed my hand down on my cards immediately and pulled them back in and turned them back face down. They were only exposed for a nano-second.  I really didn’t think anyone had seen them.

But somehow, ol’ eagle-eyed Tony saw my hand, with the action on him.  At this point, there was no side pot, but if he bet, there would be one.  So Tony went into full Tony-mode.  And started talking. “Queen-10?  Queen-10? I can’t beat Queen-10.  But I was gonna bet.  I can’t beat Queen-10.  I was gonna bet…..but I cannot beat Queen-10. I cannot beat Queen-10.”

I dunno how long this went on; probably not as long as it seemed to me.  But he must have said “Queen-10” at least a dozen times.  And then, admitting again that he couldn’t beat Queen-10, he went ahead and put out a $55 bet.

Great, now the action was on me and I’m going to look like an idiot no matter what I do.  Of course, it was my fault for exposing my hand.  Tony’s action—betting knowing what I had—would indicate that knew he had me beat.  OTOH, that just gave him the perfect opportunity to bluff, didn’t it? So I had the option of looking stupid by calling a bet made by someone who bet knowing what I had and losing that way (“why did you call?”)—or, folding the best hand because I fell for Tony’s outrageous attempt to bluff.  Neither option was appealing.  I dismissed Tony’s rant that “I can’t beat Queen-10” because actions speak louder than words.

And there was another player to think about it.  I didn’t think he had seen my hand—but it didn’t matter, since Tony had so nicely told him what I had. 

Sigh.  I decided to call.  I felt if that was the wrong play, it would somehow be less humiliating than folding the better hand.  And besides, if Tony took my money there, I could, in my heart of hearts, consider it an act of charity. 

As soon as put my money out, the player behind me folded like a cheap suit and indicated that he was losing to Queen-10, which he knew I had.  Tony and I were asked to expose our cards for the side pot.  I showed my Queen-10, and Tony showed his…..Queen-10.  Yes, he wasn’t lying, he couldn’t beat Queen-10.  He couldn’t lose to it either. We both got a laugh and we took our river bets back.  By the way, his wasn’t suited, unlike mine.

And it was all moot, as the lady who was all in flipped over her hand to show King-10, giving her the pot.  And so, whether or not I called Tony made no difference, he was never going to win any money on the river (or lose any more than he put in the pot).  Or was he?

I started wondering if maybe Tony’s table talk might have cost him a few bucks.  How?  Well, I can’t say for sure, but I really don’t think the guy behind me saw my hand.  I’m pretty sure his eyes were focused on Tony, waiting for him to act.  So he wasn’t looking at me or my cards when I exposed the hand.  Now, if that’s true, then maybe, just maybe, he might have considered calling Tony’s river bet there.  Suppose he had a lesser pair than Queens?  Based on his play, he was certainly capable of making a weak call on the river.  If Tony doesn’t tell the guy that I have Queen-10—which he obviously couldn’t beat, whether Tony could or not—maybe he finds a way to call the $55?  I dunno, it’s a long shot, but it could have happened.  We’ll never know.

Furthermore, if Tony hadn’t said anything, I would have assumed that he hadn’t seen my cards.  And I almost definitely would not have called his bet if he just made it and shut up.  As it turned out, that didn’t make any difference.  But again, if the guy behind me only had to worry about Tony’s bet and not my call—and he had anything—he might have called, not just to win Tony’s $55 but to keep his interest in the main pot alive.

Soon after grrouchie came to the table, he proceeded to slow-roll me.  Yes, he did.  He raised in front of me and I called with pocket 9’s.  He started a whole “Woe is me” schtick when I called.  “Oh no, Rob called.”  Every time I entered a pot he was in, he was like, “Oh, I’m in trouble.” Another guy called as well.  The flop was high, a couple of Queens.  He didn’t c-bet and no one else bet.  It was checked all the way down.  The other guy had nothing, I showed my 9’s.  grrouchie took his sweet time showing his hand. He looked at my cards, paused, then paused some more, waited even longer….by the time he showed his hand, the next two dealers were ready to push into our table.  And then he finally showed his pocket 10’s to take down the pot.  Of course I gave him a hard time about the slow-roll.

Then we got into another hand together and I didn’t write down the details, but at showdown we both had Queen-10 (that was clearly the hand of the night).  We chopped a small point and again made a big deal about it to Coach.

Then there was the now famous hand that involved Tony and grrouchie.  I don’t recall the beginning of it but it was three handed, the other player was the guy to Tony’s immediate right.  Grrouchie was on Tony’s left, with only Coach between them.  So all the action was on one side of the table, in the corner there.  On the turn the other guy bet $35 and Tony called.  As would  soon nr revealed, grrouchie hit a straight on the turn and he shoved, $101 more than the $35 bet.  The action went back to the guy who put out the $35 and while he was thinking, Tony started asking the dealer to pull out the $35 bets from the pot.  The dealer somehow indicated that he didn’t need to do that but Tony kept badgering him to do it.  The dealer wouldn’t do it.

Finally, Tony took it upon himself to start separating the pot out.  The dealer forcefully told him not to do that—to keep his hands out of the pot, and specifically, out of grrouchie’s all-in bet.  I’m not sure recall how long Tony kept complaining or how long the dealer kept warning him, but I did start to worry that the floor was going to be called and it was going to get messy.

But things settled down, and when they did, the guy folded.  Grrouchie was sure he would have called if Tony hadn’t influenced his action.  Tony called and grrouchie showed his straight and took down the pot.  Tony was not happy.  And since grrouchie thought that Tony talked a guy out of giving him some more money, he wasn’t all that happy either.

The problem with Tony’s request was that the action wasn’t on him, it was on the other guy. And as such, the dealer was acting totally properly by not acceding to Tony. I’m sure we’ve all seen instances where dealers, on their own accord, went ahead and pulled in the original bets out to show the person whose turn it was how much it was to call.  But as our dealer pals all confirmed on Twitter the next day, that is incorrect.  It should only be done if requested—and it can only be requested by the person who the action is on. Tony was not in position to the request and the dealer was totally correct to refuse.  And obviously, it was totally inappropriate for Tony to start touching and moving chips that were in the pot.

Soon thereafter, when he was on the button, the same dealer stopped one player short and didn’t give Tony a second card.  After everyone else’s action, Tony didn’t say anything, just pointed to his single card.  The dealer finally noticed he was missing a card and dealt him one.  But Tony gave the guy a really hard time about it, clearly believing this was intentional on the dealer’s part.  Again, it got heated, but things cooled down in time.

After many, many hours, I felt it was time to call it a night. I was having a nice night, breaking the Venetian jinx, and I wanted to make sure I left with my profits. I hadn’t been paying enough attention to the poker and it was only a matter of time before that that would cost me.  Plus I was tired.  I cashed out with a $265 profit.  Not bad for a session where I was paying a lot more attention to the conversation than the game itself.  After getting my cash, I returned to the table to say goodbye to everyone.  Just then, Tony got up and asked to speak to me privately.
It was not a surprise at all that Tony asked me for a lift to Vince’s place, where he was staying.  Vince was supposed to join us and be Tony’s ride, but for some reason, he never showed.  I guess he really, really, really doesn’t want to meet Pete Peters.


Tony said he should have really left a long time ago.  He had lost most (or all) of the money he was ahead when the blogger’s game started.  He told me that it was a $30 cab ride to Vince’s, and he would give me $15 to drop him off there.  It sounded to me like Vince lived in Summerlin, a pretty far drive from the Strip.  At least it wasn’t Reno. My only condition was that Tony be absolutely certain he could direct me there without getting us lost.  He assured me that he could.  It was about 1:30AM, the perfect time of day for a little detour to Summerlin. I was staying just a few minutes from the Strip.

As I led Tony to my car, I was reminded that this was a Friday night (and a holiday weekend) and that I was therefore missing the Slut Parade over at the MGM. What reminded me were some of the ladies I noticed at the Venetian just walking through the casino.  And I wasn’t anywhere near any of the nightclubs at the V or the Palazzo.  I’ll bet it would have been quite a sight to have seen the line-up on this night.  Note to self:  Have yourself cloned so next time, you can check out the club scenery at both the V and the MGM at the same time, and contrast and compare.

Anyway, Tony very much wanted to explain what happened with the hand with grrouchie.  He felt that by separating out the bets, it would be easier for the guy to see how big the bet was, and therefore make it more likely for him to fold, which is what Tony wanted.  So he was absolutely trying to effect the action, which is precisely why he should not have done it.  In his defense, as I pointed out earlier, he had seen so many dealers do it voluntarily that he thought it was ok to request it.  I pointed out to him that, regardless of that, it is never, never ok for him to have reached into the pot and touched (and moved) the chips as he did.  He could have gotten into much greater trouble just for doing that.

And then he explained the missing card on the button.  He was sure the dealer absolutely did it intentionally to him because of the other incident.  But he also pointed out that he felt the dealer was distracted because he was flirting with one of the many Asian ladies at our table who wasn’t Alysia Chang.

Anyway, Tony did indeed know how to direct me to Vince’s place.  I managed to miss the cut-off to US 95 totally on my own, but was able to correct course in short order.  As we neared Tony’s destination, let the record show that Tony went for his wallet and started to pull out the fifteen bucks he had offered me.  And let the record further show that I of course refused to take his money.

And another fun night of blogger’s poker had come to an end.

37 comments:

  1. So both the lightning36 Taxi Company and the RVP Taxi Company both let Tony slide on payment. I think he owes us both a dinner at one of the nice joints on the north strip --- and I'm not talking Slots O' Fun.

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    1. @Lightning: I dunno...does Slots-a-Fun still give out free popcorn? I'm sure he could handle that.

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    2. @anger....Waffle House? How would he get comps there? Is that where the best VBJ machines are?

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    3. of course, dem good waffles/machines

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  2. Say "Queen-Ten" again, I dare you... :)

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    1. I cannot beat Queen-10. But I can say it.

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    2. I'm going to go play poker right now and detail every QT I get

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    3. QT like cutie?? SWEEEEEEEEET!!!!!!!!!!! i want a full report with pics too

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    4. @grouch...you can't just play Queen-10. You have to say that you can't beat Queen-10!

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    5. Great movie, and great blog post. It's fun to relive the night from other people's perspective.

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  3. if/when i plan to go vegas. i will have to plan it around when rob/lightning r there,so i can save money on taxis

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    1. You we would charge......cost you a couple of deep fried Oreos or Twinkies.

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  4. Okay awesome report. I will have to show up next time, provided it's not in the winter time and it's not on a Friday night.

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    1. start negotiations now.SALT treaty. so not winter and friday night.so the leaves 3 seasons and 6 day window. if those demands r met then Costco bag and yoga pants. i think is fair

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    2. Thanks Alysia...what's wrong with winter?

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    3. @anger....do they sell yoga pants at Costco? Come to think of it, they don't even have bags there.

      Just 40 gallon drums of mayonnaise

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    4. I'll be in Tahoe or somewhere in Colorado come winter. And no it's not to mash machines. I tried doing that the other night to try to build up SLS points, won like $0.75 and became ridiculously bored. How do people do his for hours on end? I was better off staying at home and conjugating French verbs for fun!

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    5. Wait....you actually go TO places it snows during winter, instead of traveling to places where it DOESN'T snow? That's sick.

      Agree with you about machines.....total boredom for me.

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    6. "how do ppl do this 4 hours on end" degen gambler?? ding ding no.1 answer. hmmmmmmm. travels to places that snow. mayb she likes to ski or does search/rescue ops as a hobby??

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    7. Can you build bird houses in snowy climates?

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    8. @anger....it sounds dirty, I know, but it's not.

      Sorry, man, I couldn't approve one of your comments. Just too nasty about a certain person who has his own blog. If you want to be that harsh, you can leave the comment on his blog. I don't want to be the middle-man for that.

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  5. By the way, get conversant with mixed games; there's a sick 7 game mix at Orleans every Monday night.

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    1. Ugh....I HATE mixed games.

      I mean, bad enough I don't know the strategy, I don't even know the rules. If I'm playing in a casino with real money, the lessons are way to expensive.

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    2. No...I know how to play that.

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  6. I was happy about the grouchie/TBC hand and the subsequent one-card deal. It was the first time I ever saw Tony get out of line. And this was at a table of "friends" trying to have fun for the evening. I no longer have any questions about his many, many bans. I fully understand.

    I'm also still not sure what to make of Tony's table talk. On multiple occasions that night, he tried to bait me when we were heads up. On none of the occasions did I have a particularly strong hand. And, when Tony started in with the "You're sooooo easy to bluff" bullsh*t mid hand, it was just easier for me to fold. If Tony was bluffing, and if my mediocre hand was good, then good for him. He won a small pot. If, on the other hand, he actually had something decent, then his talk likely cost him some money as I likely would have called a flop or turn bet if he had kept his yapper shut.

    The thing about Tony's table talk is that when he starts, his fairly enraging and absolutely polarizing. I'm sure people hate to lose hand to him. of course, whether or not this makes him money or costs him profit long term is beyond my thought process.

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    1. I have a low tolerance for table talk, trying to induce action. I've done posts about that....the guy who probably cost himself some money by not shutting up and getting me to fold when I likely would have called. I suppose really, really good players know how to use that trick. I don't suppose Tony is that player.

      I had forgotten about Tony doing that you, thanks for the reminding us.

      If it was someone I didn't know, I likely would go to another table to get away with it.

      I suppose under the circumstances, you could possibly consider Tony's table talk with you just routine "trash talk" among friends. I suppose.

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    2. i guess it matters the situation,sir. i dont want my table to a library or funeral service either. i just want a enjoyable experience. GOOD TIMES!!!!!!!!! win some pots( obviously), mayb engage in some banter( where to get some good weed,talk about sports,boobies,etc,etc) shit like that.

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    3. No...I like nice, friendly chatter. Let's talk about the sports, Vegas, the ladies walking by. Women at the table are welcome to discuss their boobies or vaginas.

      I just don';t like guys trying to influence action by talking about the hand, during the hand. They're allowed to do it, but I'm allowed to ask for a table change....or a casino change.

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  7. also, some poker content from me. i know shocking!!!!!!!!! isnt STUpid UNGER's touching/moving the chips in the pot a form of angle shooting??

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    1. Yes.....he essentially admitted it.

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