My run-bad continued at Maryland Live, although not to the extent of the previous week. I think I only lost my buy-in once, and that was at 2/2 PLO (AAJQds vs. KKxx).
I made a good portion of it back ($360/500).
During this four day ML run, I played many different games. Since the high hand bonus was sometimes $500 every 20 minutes, I played lots of LHE. I think I lost every session! To be fair, the problem with running bad is that a player starts playing bad most of the time. I seemed to fall into that situation off and on. Maybe my losses would have been greater had I completely ignored the run-bad, but I also would have perhaps won a session or two of LHE. We tend to try to minimize our losing sessions when things are this horrible, which creates a double edged sword…because we also minimize our winning sessions (or what could have been a winning session) as well!
On Monday I played in the first tourney I have failed to FT at ML. I quickly almost tripled my starting stack when I started running badly again! I had KK and raised. ATs called. The flop held a ten, which was second pair. The shorter stack called my all-in and got trip tens on the river. From there nothing seemed to work for me. I need to get my head straight when I’m running bad and learn to pick my spots better. I need to gather chips, bully well and have enough to ride out the times when I get it in as a huge statistical favorite, only to get outdrawn. Leaving myself short and much more vulnerable to luck is tournament suicide. More on this later.
Granted, I did have a huge stack when my KK got cracked, so I was able to coast along for a while, but I didn’t do anything to gather more chips and be able to ride out the next bad beat. Which came sooner rather than later…
A big stack raised with KQo, I re-raised with AQo and we got it all in. He flopped a king and IGHN, not even close to the money. I run BAD.
I decided to play LO8 when a table opened up. Yeah, I ran bad there, too, but at least I enjoyed myself. There was a good player on my left who figured out he knew who I was and asked to make sure. Brown trout, anyone?
Later on, he and I managed to convince the table to play mixed games. We decided on ROSE and had a great time…I still managed to lose ;)
Luckily, I think I met a great person. While he doesn’t play much anymore, we at least have a connection and can be mentors. I also get to have someone around here and there when I am in town. We had dinner on Tuesday night together.
I also got to know another O8 player who is a great guy and will be someone I’d love to talk to at ML whenever I’m there playing. We had dinner on Monday.
My last trip to ML, I met a born-again Christian from the Philippines who plays PLO. I would love to get to know him better, as well. Then on Wednesday I met his brother! While the brother is not as talkative and outgoing as he is, I can definitely learn a thing or two from both players.
On Wednesday morning I decided to play a LO8 tourney. This was my fourth tournament at ML. A player originally from Japan got seated to my left. He has a totally different approach to LO8 than I do. So I wasn’t exactly happy to have him there, but at the same time, he is a great guy to talk to and always in a good mood. So I’ll take it.
I never really had a huge stack in this event. But I was never all-in either. I just kind of coasted along with a medium or medium-short stack. Eventually we made the FT, then down to the final five. Someone suggested a chip count chop and everyone agreed with absolutely no fighting at all. I was so over-done and ready to go home that I immediately went for it, even though I’d rather keep playing, in general–had I been fresh and not overly exhausted from basically 15 days of either being on the road or constant play.
After the tourney, the Japanese player and I exchanged numbers and decided that he would help me learn a different approach to LO8, while I would help him learn Stud. He lives in Virginia and works full-time, so we probably won’t spend much time together, but you never know.
I also talked to the PLO Christian and got a nice compliment from his brother, who was one of the winners in the O8 tourney. While at Chick-fil-A, a man approached me and said he watched me the past couple of months at ML. I’ve never even noticed this guy or played with him before, IIRC.
It was very nice to be acknowledged, especially when running so bad. While it is LOL at best to be a fan of mine, it definitely doesn’t do my ego any harm.
I hightailed it back to North Carolina, making only two stops this time! I need some real rest, but I’ll keep writing about where I am planning to go from here and the future of my poker playing.
God bless all of you!