Been Playin' a Bit... For a Change
True 'nuff, I've been playing quite a bit of cards the last two or three weeks, mostly poker but with a little bit of cribbage mixed in.
Poker's been resurgent mostly because of a hot day last Saturday in which I made six final tables and took down three of the six, along with a nice handful of SNG showings throughout the day; I fire those up continuously to keep the screens full. None of the scores were individually noteworthy but they did puff the old BR up to a more playable level.
Of course, the Curse of the Flambeau lives on: Whenever I try to play poker live at the Lake of the Torches Casino in northern Wisconsin, karma craps on me. The latest ridiculous beat was building a $150 buy-in up to about $220, then getting it all in with A-A against A-K on a K-Q-x, two-spade flop. He had the king of spades, and duly hit his 1-in-26 runner-runner, though since two other kings were out I was only something like a 91:9 fave when the money went in. At least getting aces cracked there is worth $25, consolation pittance that it is.
Doom. Doom. Doom-de-doom-doom. Thanks for da bad beat. Goodbye, $430 pot.
But, it could be worse. I returned home Saturday after a Turkey Day half-weekend in the northwoods and basically won it all back, so we'll chalk it up to variance. Two more final tables in better tourneys, though just a tenth and a third to show for the runs. (I'll take 'em.)
And an interesting start to today. I fired up the computer and played a handful of small tourneys and SNGs, and ran into a couple of French players blatantly colluding in a 6-player SNG. Never playing big pots against each other while taking turns jamming against me and other players with crap, that sort of thing. I'm slow at times, but I figured it out after about the twelfth straight move when we got down to three-handed, me against the two cheaters. We'll see if the site does anything about it, since the overall pattern could not have been more blatant. I still lasted long enough to beat one of the two before losing a race against the other.
As for the cribbage stuff, I've settled down into a pattern of taking one weekend a month and floating off to some locale within a four- or five-hour drive and playing a full ACC-sanctioned event, which generally means playing 50 or so games between Friday night and Sunday afternoon. Between that and my local grass roots league I've been on a solid run for about six months. That can be variance, too, but cribbage is about as complex a two-person card game as there is, and I've studied hard the last year or so to try and improve my game. Millions of people know how to play cribbage, but there are only a few hundred really great cribbage players, and I'm trying to join them, a process that probably takes several years. (Besides, it serves as a break from poker on the rare occasions that that world gets to be too much.) One problem is that unlike in poker, there are no great cribbage books from which to study. There is one pretty good one (Colvert), a few so-so ones, and some that are just junk.
Therefore, onward. Folks notice I continue to write this and that and the next, and I'm also looking for a few better sites to do some link exchanges with regarding the two new sites I'm writing for, both of which I believe offer distinctive content. Send an e-mail if you have interest in this.