“Poker is a combination of luck and skill. People think mastering the skill part is hard, but they’re wrong. The trick to poker is mastering the luck.” (Somebody who knew the game)
What do you think about this?
"Everybody heard about the power of positive thinking. Essentually, good luck works the same way. There is an opinion that God (or the Universe) always says "yes" to whatever you think. If you think "I am unlucky, my life is out of luck" the Universe says to you "Yes, you are right. You are unlucky." The good thing is, once you sincerely believe you are lucky, then you can be sure good luck will soon pay you a visit. It sounds really simple, but it's not that simple, after all. The key word here is 'sincerely'. Our subconsciousness gets so used to negative thinking that switching the polarity might require some hard work. Try saying "I am a good person, I have a wonderful family, I have a great job, I live in a great country governed by worthy people; I am satisfied with the world around me, I am living a happy life, and God loves me". To some of us even saying this is a problem, leave alone sincere belief. And maybe our life is not really that good all the time, but the trick is: once you start believing sincerely in those words, the Universe will say "yes, you are exactly right", and your life will start changing.
Now, what can help us to convince our subconsciousness that we are blessed by good luck? Positive thinking is a good thing, but it can be hard to believe that you are rich, when you drive a 10 year old car and buy all your clothes in Walmart. Driving a new Infinity will surely be a lot better for your self-esteem. In other words, we do not appreciate the things that are cheap. We buy expensive stuff, in most cases, not to show off, but to prove to ourselves that we are worth it. Another example, if you live near a Hawaiian beach, you probably take it for granted, but I have to pay a considerable amount of money to spend a week in Hawaii, and it makes me appreciate every moment there. So the more we pay for something, the more we value it. In our minds the words 'cheap' and 'free' stand right next to 'useless', while 'expensive' is synonym to 'good' and 'valuable'."
Well, it hit home somehow for me.
Anybody even only remotely following our little blog here knews it was just not our year. We achieved almost nothing and end the year now with a big fat red negative amount in the books (Statking that is). The late 2005 showed it's teeth once more with ridicoulous beats in high buy-in events and the few cash games we are playing these days, both online and live. We've done it all: bad management, bad play and bad luck with almost no break almost the whole year. We are consistantly thinking about what to change and tried a lot of so called "tricks" (the usual stuff as stepping down, changing games and limits, concentrating on one game kind, playing live only, playing tournaments only as well as the more superstitious ones and making funny promises to fate, changing seats, running around your seat after a beat etc etc). Nothing really helped. Until now. Well you bloody bad run, we won't miss you! And vanishing you will, as I now found the ultimate solution while surfing the web: www.luckforsale.com! After almost closing the site right away in the very last second I read over the 'theory behind' (see above) and as I said, the reasoning there is true to some degree. So I bought my share of luck right away. And now, you dumb subconscious mind, luck is ours! Not that we now forget about the small skill assets that we own but no more expecting the worst from now on!
While we struggle at poker our buddy Sebastion from Cardcore.net made a fortune this year. Playing serious since August 2005 only he already made a nice amount of cash (way over 50k), mostly playing SNG's at party and lately by killing MTT's also. He topped that by winning a 35k guaranteed two days ago and adding more than 12k to his bankroll. He's only 23 years old but you don't want him on your table - what he's maybe missing from experience he makes more than up using his feared "lucker" skills ;) - Anyway, congratulations Sebastian, well done and good work! We look forward to traveling to Vegas/WSOP with you in 2006!
This will be my last post before xmas and I just wanted to wish you all a very happy chrismas this year and nice holidays in case you have some (I do). Xmas will be family/playing event for us this year and full week off from work until new year comes pretty welcome, too. Need a break!
For all you wetdreamers nice guys here is an image showing pretty explicit what online poker at our place is really all about ;)
Playing a $50 NLHE tournament this week I received a compliment about our little blog from Mike (artiecat/arthur2000) that lead us to a small small conversation during the first break. We both had been running pretty well with my stack being at 3,800 and his at 4,900 while the average still was about 2,200 or something (I had already about 7k but lost a 73% favorite). Anyway, he asked me if I would write about him if he would go to bust me out of the tourney; I said no, if I would be writing about everyone beating me I could also publish a world-phone-book. He then asked to be written about if I were going to bust him (add him to my small 3 entrys long personal phonelist) but still I refused, laughing. Being the sick compulsive gambler that I am I made him the following offer: if he (artiecat) goes all-in on the very first hand after the break I would not only call him without even looking at my hand but I would also write about it. He agreed. So the guy stood to his word and shoved all-in for 4,900 on the very first hand hand. I promised to call and so I did although not really 'blind' as I had seen my hand on the deal and it was 59o (which makes me an even more sick gambler I guess). Great, all others folded (which I can hardly understand as we both have been in early position and our conversation was in stars public chat window). Artiecats showed A7o and was a clear favorite... until the flop which was 456 giving me a pair! For a second it looked good for me until the turn came a 3, giving him a straight and left me drawing dead. He won the pot and got the chiplead. Good gamble, artie!! (artie contacted me the following day via msn and told me that he had put the chips to good use, winning the tournament. Congratulations again, nice talking, playing and gambling with you :)
While Katja is playing/grinding some limit holdem I will be next up for both the big tournaments on stars and party next sunday; stars even add $100,000 to their event. Great value!
Our local city newspaper, the well respected Hamburger Abendblatt, had a full-page "weekend journal" cover story about poker, featuring Michael Keiner and Katja. There is also an online version of the article (text is german-only, no pictures). Wow, one could start to think that poker might get somewhere in germany. Michael Keiner already suggested that the german championchip might get 4 times as big next year and I am on his side on this. I heard rumors that there might as many as 70,000 online poker players in germany and that the online poker sites are looking for germany as the "sleeping giant" pokerwise. While I hope that might be true (and that the giant finally awakes) I honestly doubt it. Poker, it's lifestyle, the crazy characters and the obvious disregard for money you got to show to put it all-in on a bluff does not feel like it could get mainstream here in germany. I hope I'm wrong...
Speaking of crazy characters... look at "J.J." Liu playing at the final table of the $15,000 buyin five-diamonds classic (she got 4th). I know here from playing and she is dangerous. That she is also pretty self-confident is clearly visible here. I remember watching a WSOP NLHE event (as a railbird, my usual place), last 2 tables, where the terrorized everybody and only Layne Flack was able to deal with her due to his fearless play. Layne won the event (a week after winning annother one, earning him the nickname "back-to-back-flack" and almost $500,000)... J.J. is a force at the tables.
70+ years old Dyle Brunson managed to get third in this actual five-diamond event, he is still on top of his game. 1st and 2nd are two scandinavian players - are there any tournaments left which those boyish looking young guns don't win? If you follow how successfull those scandinavian players are all over the world you can only be amazed. There must be something in their gens and their way to grow up that makes them so successfull at poker. Should be investigated. I already said today to my buddy Frank that I might consider a change of hometown to some small city in denmark or the like if this would help to have any success in the big tournaments...
The "crazy characters" episode is not over here. Look at Frank, shot last week, training for triathlon on his bike. Yep, you see right. There is his laptop attached and he is playing some poker while doing his exercices!
That is motivation ;)
I played almost every online tournament with a buyin over $100 this weekend but except a 2nd place in a PLHE earning me $1,800 I made nothing (this win did not cover all the buyins) and no cash games. Katja is whoring bonuses at some strange poker sites and is very busy therefore also.
This weekend was the German poker championship in Texas No-Limit 2005, hosted by Casino Schenefeld. The event was a big success for the casino and got some media attention. We got interviewed by newspapers, filmed by news reports and the event might even be covered by DSF Deutsches-Sport-Fernsehen (german sports-TV), who tooks shootings there (but no holecams in use so it might be a short coverage). The local news coverage got already aired!