Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Know when to walk away

Well, my grand experience in online poker has come to an end. I told myself that once my online account reached zero, it'd be time to quit. That time has come.

I think my losing streak is due, more than anything else, to my overanalysis of the game. Poker, as many have said, is not so much a game about cards played with other people, but rather is a game about people played with cards. I've been reading poker books voraciously the last few weeks, and in the last week or so, I think I've been playing the cards instead of the people. Six times in the last three days I held AA or KK or AK or AQ, the flop turned up nothing helpful, and I still bet strong, losing to other players with sets of 8's or two pair (or in one case, a pair of 3's against my AK high). In retrospect, I knew they had it, too, but was trying to bully them out of the pot because I had the best hand before the flop. Instead of thinking to myself "that player is acting like they have me beat, and my AK is weak", I thought to myself "they player probably has me beat, but I've got AK, dammit, and that's supposed to be a good hand." You can see why this thought process burned me so quickly.

It's been a good run, though. At my best, I was up almost $3000, and I'm still walking away with almost $2000. Not bad for an initial $20 buy-in.

It's time to head back to the dining room and tournament tables and play against people I can actually see and read.

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