Sunday, March 8, 2015

"The Key to a Happy Marriage is a Wife Who Drinks Tequila"

The Juciest 1/2 Game Ever! (Part 1)

Well maybe not the juiciest 1/2 game ever.  But certainly the juiciest one I’ve ever been involved in.

How juicy?  Well, afterwards, I realized that during the four hours I played, I was exceptional card dead.  Probably in the top 5 sessions of my NL cash career in terms of card-deadness.  I hardly ever played a hand.

Despite that, my results were outstanding.  One of the two best sessions I’ve ever had playing NL.

It was beyond crazy.

This was mid-week, and I had gotten a late start due to having a lot of work to do.  When I left my hotel room, I still had about ¼ of my Ante Up column to finish.  But I needed to take a well deserved break from writing so I headed to the poker room.  I thought it was after 8PM when I got seated, but as I was getting my first or second hand, I heard them announce that the 8PM cash drawing was a few minutes away. OK, I had a hand or two to try to get a ticket for it.  All they were giving away tho was two $100 winners.

I folded the first two garbage hands I received to preflop raises.  I hadn’t gotten the lay of the land yet, but when it was raised again preflop on my third hand, I was starting to.

That third hand I had Ace-King offsuit in the big blind.  The Ace was red and the King was a club.  Someone raised to $12 and I called. At this point I heard the announcement that the hand we were on would be the last one eligible for the 8PM drawing. Three or four of us saw the flop, which was all clubs.  It was 8-4-2.  With the draw to the second nut flush, I called a $20 bet from the preflop raiser and it was heads up.  The turn was a blank.  We both checked.  I was thinking how nice it would be if the river card was the Ace of clubs.  It would give me the nut flush—but not the nuts, since it would make a straight flush possible.  That was definitely the card I wanted to see.

The river was the Ace of clubs.  I led out with a $30 bet, thinking my opponent would have a tough time calling with all those clubs on the board.  But call he did, saying, “You probably have it, but I gotta call you.”  He showed King-8 for top pair on the flop (it was sooooted). 

The dealer handed me a card to fill out and just then the shift manager—one of my old dealer buddies who now frequently floors and occasionally manages the room—asked the dealer for the last batch of drawing tickets.  I told him, “Yeah, here, hang on a second,” as I hurriedly filled out the card.  One of the things you need to put on the card is the time.  In my haste, I put down 8PM, then realized that was mistake.  Technically, a card filled out with 8PM on it would be eligible for the midnite drawing, not the 8PM drawing. As I handed the shift manager the ticket, I realized the mistake and said to him, “Oh, I put 8PM down, that’s wrong, should I change it?”  He said no problem, it was ok. 

While the next hand was happening, they held the drawing.  The first name drawn was the guy sitting across from me at this table.  The dealer gave him a hard time about it because apparently, the night before, his ticket had been drawn and he missed out on the cash because he was in the Men’s Room at the time.  Bad timing.

The second name drawn was mine.  Wow.  I had been in the room long enough to play three hands, won the first pot I entered, caught a flush, and won the drawing.  Both the guy who also won and the dealer shouted “Fix! Fix!”  I said to the dealer, “Hey, don’t you want your tip?”  He shut up.  The player said, “Your ticket was probably right on top, seems fishy.”  Nah, I saw them shake up the box like they always do.

As soon as the shift manager called my name, he said, “No….you're disqualified.  It says 8:00 on it.”  Ha ha.  I knew he was kidding.

That next hand I had King-Queen of diamonds and called $11.  Three of us saw the King-high, no diamonds, flop.  I called $15 and it was heads up.  The turn and river were blanks and neither of us bet.  He showed King-3 and I had him out kicked.

I was up $100 or so, plus the $100 I had won in the drawing.  Wow, up $200 in less than 10 minutes.  I seriously considered taking off.  I had work to do, and how often am I going to get a double up in that short a period of time?  My hourly for the session would have been something like $1,200!  Not bad, huh?

But no, I stayed and boy am I glad I did.

There were two guys at the table driving all the action.  It wouldn’t be fair to call them maniacs.  The last maniac you saw at a poker table would be considered a nit next to these two guys.

In the center of the table was a guy from Denmark.  He spoke perfect English with just a bit of an accent.  He referred to himself as “The Dane.”  And so did everyone else.  Two seats to his left was a guy from Mexico, who the Dane—and everyone else—called “The Mexican.” He referred to himself frequently as The Mexican as well. He too spoke perfect English with perhaps a slightly thicker accent.   I would say that the Dane played approximately 98% of the hands I saw dealt to him.  Of those, he raised preflop at least 75% of the time.  Most of the times he didn’t raise it was because somebody had raised first, and he called.  He didn’t three-bet much, but I don’t think he ever folded to a preflop raise.  The few hands he folded preflop were limped pots, not raised pots. 

He would occasionally make a “normal” preflop raise ($8-$12) but more often than not it would be bigger: $17, $20, $25.  Yeah, open raising to $25 was not rare for him.

The Mexican called almost every raise the Dane made (preflop).  Unless he re-raised, which he did sometimes.  On the rare occasions he didn’t have to call a raise from the Dane, he would usually raise himself (and also fairly large).  He also liked to call the Dane’s raises without looking at his cards.  He sometimes raised without looking at his cards (but I never saw him three-bet without looking at his cards).

After the flop, the Dane would c-bet automatically.  In later streets, he would value bet anything that approximated a hand. Bottom pair, worse kicker?  That was a bet for him.  He would fold after the flop some times, but not all that often.  I assume he folded only if he no pair, not even a back-door draw or a gutshot, and not an Ace or a King because he would bet Ace-high.

I guess I’m exaggerating a little, but that’s what it seemed like.  Now the Mexican was a little more discriminating.  Not much, but a little.  He would almost never fold to the Dane’s bet.  Really, if the Dane had made the bet, the Mexican was calling.  But if someone else had bet, he didn’t have that much trouble finding a fold. 

Did I mention that these guys were also luckboxes?  Seriously, they went through long stretches of catching cards with ridiculous holdings.  Time after time they’d take pots from players playing premium hands when their 7-4 offsuit would river a straight or their 9-2 offsuit would flop two pair and river a boat.  Things like that.  The Dane got about 5 drawing cards within half an hour at one point, mostly on flushes.  And not one of those flushes started with him having a suited connector (or even a gapper) or a suited Ace.  No, it was 10-3 suited.  Or maybe Q-7 offsuit and four hearts on the board.  It was amazing.

One specific hand I noted, the Dane raised preflop with Queen-4 of hearts.  He got a caller or two and then a new player shoved for his entire $100 buy-in.  The Dane called, as did two others. Dane flopped the flush draw and shoved, and the other players with chips both called (I think the Dane’s stack was the biggest, but the other two stacks were considerable). It was $700-$800 pot.  The Dane rivered his flush and took it down

The bets these two guys were willing to make and call with marginal hands was simply amazing.  The Dane would bet $200 (into a $75 pot) with bottom pair and be called by the Mexican with medium pair, deuce kicker.  They had no problem going all in with such weak hands either (or the occasional naked bluff).  There was one stretch when every other hand, they were stacking each other.  Seriously, all the chips would go from the Mexican to the Dane.  The Mexican would pull $300 out of his wallet, buy three stacks or red back from the Dane that he had just lost to him, and play on.  Five hands later, the Dane’s entire stack was shipped to the Mexican, and the Dane would buy $300 worth of his ex-chips back from the Mexican.

It was the damndest thing.

I knew I had to stay just for the show they were putting on.  Oh yeah, it did occur to me that I maybe could get some of that money that they were passing back and forth.  And yes, I knew the way to do it was open up my calling range.  But as I said at the outset, I was incredibly card dead.  I was only getting the junkiest of junk hands.  I never saw anything suited.  I never saw two Broadway cards.  I barely saw one.  No suited connectors or even one-gappers.  A pocket pair?  Are you kidding me?  I kept thinking, “Just give me a hand, one hand.  Not even a good hand.  Can I even get a hand on the bottom end of mediocre?”  But mostly they did not come.  I went many, many orbits without playing a hand.  And since the preflop raises were pretty big, if not downright huge, it was impossible to justify calling $25 with Jack-5 offsuit.

To give you a few examples of how insane it was.  The Dane raised preflop once and a reg with a tight-aggressive style three-bet him.  The Dane called and shoved on an innocuous looking flop.  The reg called.  The Dane flipped over pocket 6’s, unimproved (no draws either).  The reg had pocket Aces, which didn’t need to be improved.  The reg took down a $400-$500 pot with his overpair.

Later they got into again.  On the flop, the Dane shoved—a bigger shove than the pocket 6’s hand. It was a huge overbet.  The reg took his time but called (the Dane had him covered, and the reg’s stack was pretty big).  This pot was like $600-$700 (less than $100 in the pot pre).  At showdown, the Dane showed top pair—a pair of Queens with Queen-4.  He didn’t have any draws, he put all that money into the pot with top pair, no kicker.  The reg took the huge pot with Queen-Jack, just top pair, better kicker.  It was unreal.  A couple of nights later I played with the reg again and we were recounting the wild session.  I think he walked away up around $1,500.  He said he wouldn’t have called any other player at the table with his hand there but  he “had” to call the Dane. 

I just had to be patient until I got something that, by the loosest standards possible, was playable.

In the meantime, when the seat to my immediate left opened up, a delightful, cute, young woman from Australia claimed it.  Turns out she was on her honeymoon.  Let’s call her Jamie since that is her name and I don’t need to hide her identity.  Her husband Matt spent the evening sitting behind her, watching, not playing.  Jamie assured me that Matt was a poker player too but was just railing his bride (so-to-speak) this night.

With a Dane, a Mexican and an Aussie, the table had a definite international flair.  Jamie was at the table only a few minutes with her $100 buy-in when, having seen a few hands, said to Matt, “I’m never going to be able to play a hand!”  Because during her brief time there every pot was raised to $20-$25 before the flop.  A while later another player took a seat and bought in for $100.  The Dane warned him, “That’s not going to last very long at this table.”  I followed up and said, “Yeah, as soon as you get a hand, it’s all going to the center.”  It was that kind of game.

It was also a friendly table, everyone was laughing and having a good time.  Whenever the Mexican or the Dane lost a big pot, they would just shrug and laugh.  Some of the other players that lost to their junk hands were not laughing those loses off, of course.

The Dane and the Mexican had started doing tequila shots together and wanted to bring Matt and Jaime into the fold.  Matt was willing, but Jamie insisted she couldn’t handle it.  She drank some other type of alcoholic beverage.  The Mexican kept ordering tequila shots for Matt and kept begging Jamie to join them in the tequila.   Jamie resisted, saying she’d “be on the floor” if she had any.  The Mexican said, “Well, that’s good for your husband.”  I explained, “No, she said it would make her pass out.”  He responded, “Oh, that’s not good.  But he kept insisting that the secret to a happy marriage was a wife that drank tequila.  “The key to a happy marriage is a wife who drinks tequila.”  Eventually, Jamie took a sip of Matt’s tequila just to placate the Mexican--with no ill-effects, I might add.

And once again I have to make this a two parter.  More silliness and definitely more poker in the second part, which can now be found here.


  1. First I was mad because you already posted again after I just caught up. Now I'm mad that I have to wait for Part II... :)

    1. Well, Coach...I did give you a warning right at the top that this was a mult-part post, so you had the option of waiting and reading it all at once in a couple of days. :)

  2. so far B just on pic bcuz just 1 pic and small boobies and no tatts BUT mayb up to an B++ or A if story is good .

    1. B+++++++ good attention to detail on the poker hands BUT i grade on a curve (Boobie curve) ,u see

    2. I think you are a boobie snob!

    3. NO NO!!! i dont mind mayo on BOOBIES!!! or tamales LOL

  3. It wouldn’t be fair to call them maniacs.

    I call him the candy man. (men)

    A game that is loose and everyone laughing and drinking is the nuts.

    1. LOL i like that term. i am stealing it

    2. Yeah, MOJO, Candy man, I like it. I have heard that one before.

      When I first started playing NL, I would have freaked out at the loose action here, and probably changed tables. But now I think I know how to deal with it, and you'll see the final results in the conclusion.