Monday, December 01, 2008

Bringing Out The Felt

Four of the five of us in my wee circle heading to Vegas next week (woohoo!) enjoy playing poker. Only two of us do it remotely seriously. The three who aren't me haven't played in varying lengths of time. So what do I do? I put together the first home game I've hosted in at least a year, if not more.

I extend the invite to a few other mutual friends, and in the end, had a mere 7 players. This worked nicely for my tabletop octagon.

Nothing gets a place cleaned up like company. I spent Saturday vacuuming, sweeping, dusting, and scrubbing. Of course, I'm a guy, so that only covered the main hall, the living room, kitchen, and one washroom. The bedrooms and ensuite went untouched because nobody but me would be seeing them. My place suddenly feels about 100 sq ft bigger after all that. I should have people over more often.

Anyway, beer and pop was in the fridge, chips on the counter, and pizza menu out. Everyone showed up within the expected +/- 30 minutes of start time and we got underway.

I grabbed Tournament Director (just Google it, I'm too lazy to link) and set up my friend's loaner laptop on a nearby table. Everyone was impressed (and thought I wrote the damn program until I corrected them). This was a game for fun, so the stakes were small:

$20 - 2500 chips. 1 rebuy, 1 $10 add-on for 1500 more chips. Levels start off small and get crazy by the end. 5 rebuys and 3 add-ons were made for a grand total of $270. I generously paid out top 3 with an SnG payout structure, which meant even 3rd place made a small profit if the did the rebuy and add-on.

I went out in 6th without a rebuy, and the only remaining decent player won the whole thing. Were there memorably hands? I don't remember. As I said, this was to knock the rust off the guys scared of Vegas and have some fun with people I haven't played with in a while.

Although I had 50% of the guy who finished 3rd, so I did okay.

Four of us tossed some chips around in a "cash" game ($0.10/0.20), where I played "tricky" by limping KK (and losing), and then hiding my rockets expertly later on for a "big" pot.

One of the four was a relative newbie compared to the rest of us. I got the impression he didn't have much live play under his belt, nor much cash game experience. He'd fold low pocket pairs in a 4-handed game with position preflop even after seeing the crap we'd been playing with. He also made a few mistakes that would have gotten him reamed in a serious game (talking about his cards while the hand was still going on for a sizeable pot), etc.. He probably learned a fair bit that night, despite our best efforts. :)

In the end, I think the goal of having some fun and playing some cards as accomplished. It wasn't as raucous as a Tuckfards game, but when you've got guys that (mostly) know one another, all those social graces drop away and have a blast. I'll consider it a Vegas preview.

10 Days left? Sweeeeet!

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