Friday, December 31, 2010

Bye bye 2010

Adieu 2010. I can't say I'm gonna miss you. We had our ups and downs but all-in-all I'm glad you are over. We did a lot of things throughout the months beginning with a participation in Event #1 of the LAPC at the Commerce. A♠J♥ losing to 2♦4♠ ended that adventure before the dinner break.

But I'm not bitter.

I had fun and pulled an all-nighter playing cash to win some of my buy-in back and Tania and Dante had a good time in the VIP lounge anyway.

Vegas during WSOP was fun and it gave me an opportunity to hang out with my fans from the Royal Bunker. Really cool peeps, and I have a feeling our friendship will last for a good while.

The America's Cup was a REALLY close call. Two final tables, a first and a third place almost take me to Iguazu falls in South America. That would've been sweet and I had it at the click of my mouse... if only I hadn't shoved with A♣7♥ when 3-handed.

WCOOP was a big tease. Battling over 20 thousand or so players to win a seat in the main event and getting my aces cracked by jacks in the last round was particularly cruel. Touché. Really.

And then of course my participation in the RB WSOP League... *sight* I guess finishing in the upper part of the bunch has its merits, right? Right?

And of course there were countless hours at the local casinos, home games, mtt's, cash sessions, blah, blah, blah...


BUT it could be a lot worst. I could've NOT been a contender at all. I could have finished at the bottom all over the place and not writing about all these amazing opportunities that were within a few moves or percentage points from swinging my way!

I KNOW there are many details I have to work on about my game. But I got really close this year. I have to remember that this was only the first year I play poker and that there are many aspects that need to complement the act of playing itself. And that's what I'm going to be working on moving forward.

So here's looking ahead and excited about the world of possibilities. I'm already working in the different areas that need focus. I am studying the game and MY game to find my leaks. I am working out and eating healthier. I am finding a balance between all the things that are important in my life: my beautiful wife, my amazing son, family, friends, following my dreams and having fun along the way!

So thank you 2010. You gave me a lot to be thankful for and a lot more to work on. You gave me the opportunity to meet hundreds of wonderful people and helped me grow as a person all-around. So, maybe I am going to miss you 2010... a little.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Zen Circle

Getting back in the groove. I was a bit disappointed that I couldn't find a good FREE app to post from my phone but I seem to have resolved this. I just found out I can post from my phone (or anywhere really) by sending an email! So I don't really have to log-on or be on my computer to post. A simple email will do the trick and this is the first one! 

The year is almost over and I feel like a recap is due, my next post will be about that. For now, I can tell you that I feel super motivated and looking forward to everything that is coming my way, or rather to everything I am creating in my life. In the meantime, I leave you to this:   

In Zen Buddhist painting, the ensō circle symbolizes a moment when the mind is free to simply let the body/spirit create. A lot of times we get to carried away with controlling every single detail that we convince ourselves to go into places or make decisions that are not necessarily the best, instead of going with our first inclination. We have to remember that knowledge is in us as a whole and not just in the parts we appear control, in other words: trust your SELF, not just your mind. 

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Back to the gym

It's been a little over a week since my last post which it's not cool. I'll give you a quick recap. I played WCOOP Event #3 and finished a bit better the middle of the pack. I started off well, but I feel like I played a bit tighter than what I should've as the game progressed. I went card dead for a while Nd when I got good playable hands I ran into better hands and a bad beat. I've been breaking even all around which it's better then losing of course and I feel I'm playing just ok.

For some reason I've been busting out of a lot of tourneys with KK, which could make it easy to blame it on the bad beats, but the reality is that it's been more than that. I shouldn't even put myself in a situation when a pair, even one as good as kings, is going to define my whole tournament. I have to have healthier stacks as I move into the latter stages of tournaments.

On a other note I finally went back to the gym, which was waaay overdue. I just came back and I feel like I will be sore tomorrow. But this is a good thing. It's part of finding that balance that I am seeking to continue flowing and continually improving in all aspects of my life. Short entry, but I didn't want to let more time go by without posting.


-3dgar BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Inception: A Review

I am not one to jump on bandwagons, so when the hype about this movie was at its max I simply sat back and waited until I was actually able to walk in to the movie theater as the previews were getting started and still sit in the best spot.

I wanted to see the flick with an open mind and with the least possible expectations. It was fun. I did like it. But there are buts. Taking into consideration that the majority of the settings in the film were dreams I think it fell extremely short as far as visual experiences and places where we could have been taken. Seriously. I remember most of my dreams, and let me tell you they can get pretty freaky sometimes. No, not THAT kind of freaky (most of the time) but a wild out-of-this-word-fantasy-full-of-amazing-characters-and-crazy-settings-which-defy-all-notions-of-reality-as-we-know-it kind of thing. And we didn't get any of that in this movie. Well, just a little. So in that sense I was a bit disappointed. I mean, just to think about the realm of possibilities where this movie could've taken us... ah, forget it. Maybe my expectations are too high. But trust me, it was not because of the movie itself, it was only because I knew where the action takes place.

In any case, the movie is what it is and once I realized that it wasn't going to go where I kind of wanted it to, I took what I was given and was willing to run along with it. But it didn't quite run. It actually sort of stalled. It felt like it was gaining momentum a few times and then it just sort of repeated itself. And then it did it again. And then again. And then... well, you get my point.

I really feel like this movie could have used about 25 less minutes of playtime, particularly in the second half. And yes, I know that it was taking place in a dream, and that sometimes dreams do feel like they go on forever, but when you are catering to an audience you have to shoot for making that lasting forever feeling entertaining and not like the guy in charge of editing was taking two-hour lunches.

But I like Christopher Nolan. He is at least trying to be different and presenting concepts that your regular Janes & Joes don't think about much. I for one think that his best work is yet to come, and this film is another solid step in the making of that grand earth shattering mindfuck that will have everyone talking about it for a really long time.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

This week in poker and WCOOP

Last Sunday was a small profit day. I played quite a few tourneys and SnG’s. I didn’t run so hot on the mtt’s but I was able to take a first and a third place in the SnG’s. I didn’t log in many hours hours online due to many other obligations the rest of the week but I did play in two different home games with some good friends. The first one was on Monday with a group of friends that do not play poker on a regular basis. In a way I was kind of explaining certain spots or rulings as they were not completely sure about some points, like a couple of split pots or betting etiquette.

I had a lot of fun and even managed to lose half of my stack by a guy chasing a one-card flush which he made by the river (obv). I lost the rest of my chips when my aces were out flopped by not one but TWO guys playing J-rags on a 5-J-J flop. I was not going to re-load but they convinced me and I ended up being the biggest winner of the night. The downside was that I ended up staying up until 4am when I had to go to work at 9am. Ouch. But it was fun and I enjoyed the company of my friends.

The rest of the week was all daily-grind stuff. I am taking a history class which is turning out to be quite the interesting experience as the teacher is a bit “out there” as far as his personal philosophies is concerned. We have spent the first couple of classes talking about Atlantis, Lemuria and the possibility of life being a product of intelligent design or extraterrestrial beings. I am serious. In any case, I am not a stranger to such “off-beat” subjects it’s just that I have to say that the context in which they are being discussed in this class seems to be a little out of place as the majority of the classmates have a hilariously perpetual wtf face.

The second home game of the week was my regular Friday Night Poker with Ian and the gang. I also ended up with a profit after losing a buy-in. I don’t know what is it with me but often times I find myself coming from behind to end up ahead. I guess what’s important is the result and finishing with positive numbers but I have noticed that this is a pattern that keeps appearing in my life. More on this later.

So I went to bed a bit late last night but I had to wake up early today to go to the office because I had a couple of appointments. I finished around 2pm and went back home. I was planning on playing a couple of satellites for the WCOOP but was too tired to be completely focused, so after an epic Carnitas Tacos meal I opted for a much needed nap. I passed out for about two hours.

When I woke up I logged in and saw a few satellite opportunities. I settled for a $2.20 with re-buys with the intention of playing for full stacks at every opportunity. I waited patiently for good spots and doubled-up in key points during the re-buy craziness. I ended up with an average stack when the re-buy period ended and I didn’t have to re-buy at any point. I did take the opportunity to add-on as I wanted to get max-value in the following levels.

315 players started the tourney and after the first hour of play we were down to about 155. It is worth mentioning that there were 1042 re-buys and 133 add-ons for a total of 14 entries to Event #3 of the WCOOP. People were playing pretty loose and aggressive so the opportunities to steal were very limited as you were almost always going to get a caller or two so hand selections were crucial. The good thing was that I got paid handsomely for my made hands which eventually led me to WIN ONE OF THE ENTRIES!!!

Yes, I am excited.

So I will be playing Event #3 of the WCOOP Sunday September 5. The start time is 2pm PST so I have plenty of time to have a nice brunch with Tania (minus the champagne because it makes me sleepy) before playing and then… it’s on!

Wish me the best.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Fail or Zen?

3 tourneys today, no cashes. That pretty much sums it up. The thing about playing small buy-in tournaments is that many players will make marginal calls a lot more lightly diminishing bluffing opportunities quite a bit. I think this was the formula for today's busts. I had good hands (or projects for good hands) and ran into players who would NOT let go of small pairs and that was it.

I decided to take a break from the grind and went for a walk with my beautiful wife and son. We stopped for coffee, sat for a while and had a pleasant chat while Dante played in the patio of the coffee shop. Life is good isn't?

So, now it's back to the drawing board. A friend of mine lent me Ace on the River by the great Barry Greenstein a while back and I've been a lazy bum and have not read he book. I got a hold of it today and finally tackled on a few chapters. I will read some more later today as I'm finding it insightful and entertaining. I'll let you know how much I finally like it when I finish it. BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Balance is key

I didn't play at all last night. My wife had made plans to go to a workshop for personal growth and I had to take care of Dante, my 1 1/2 year old boy. We kicked back and relaxed for a while. We saw Cars and some Sesame Street videos. After a while we went out for an evening walk and when we came back home we played with his toys.

I was totally centered in my time with my son and enjoyed his company thoroughly. When my wife finally came back we tried to watch a movie but were too tired to finish it, so we went to bed and called it a night.

What happens is that I've been too focused on poker for the last year or so. I have been logging many hours to the point of creating an unnatural balance of my use of available time. I have to say that I have not played as much as I would like to, but working a full-time job, taking classes, being a husband and a father does dictate how much time I can invest on my game without sacrificing everything else. My dad used to say that there is just about enough time for everything, and he was right. I still have to bring myself to the gym O.o

Today was a smooth day at the office and now I'm getting ready to go out on a date with my wife as we were able to get a babysitter for the evening. We have a couple of ideas of where we could go and I'm looking forward to an amazing time, so... Ship it!!

PS. We ended up going for a walk to the world famous San Diego Zoo BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Deep Runs!

I played two tournaments last night. The first one was a 6-max with $3k guaranteed. I placed 834 out of 1871. I was not pleased with that result because I feel like I made a few loose decisions which of course led me to bust about middle of the pack. I knew I had played out of tune so I decided to give it another shot and this time I focusing on playing my A-game.

I found a 1R1A with $6K guaranteed and played it for good 4+ hours. I was fortunate enough to have a good friend railing (Yona) which added a little extra fun to the evening. Also, I made it a point to write a few Tweets of my progress which I think helps me to focus and hold myself accountable to a certain extent. I mean, I don’t have to explain myself to no one but me, but being out there in the open certainly adds a certain element of transparency to the whole experience. I ended up placing 212th out of 2342 players which is pretty decent. I won some cash in the process which is always a bonus and one of the ultimate objectives.

After the bubble I doubled my stack with a couple of decent hands and as players were being eliminated at an accelerated place I found myself with A♥J♥ on the small blind. It was folded around to the guy on the button who open shoved with enough chips to cover me. At that point I had a stack of chips that was below the chip average, but big enough to wait for a better spot. I thought he was just pushing to steal the blinds with a random hand or maybe a weak ace. It turned out he had QQ. There was no help for me on the flop and that was it.

I’m gonna look for some software or site to be able to post hand on my blog as I think it will enrich the overall attractiveness of it. As I am writing this I am playing a small $500gtd which had 3702 players entering. We are already in the money with about 250 players left. Wish me luck!


Monday, August 23, 2010

Year One

It's been a year since I started playing. I don't think this is a long time, but it does feel like many things have happened. More than anything I have to say that I'm thankful for everything I've received this year thanks to this wonderful game as I have met so many wonderful people and made so many friends from different places. I haven't had the opportunity to travel so much, but the little escapades I've had have been just as valuable as a long trip.

I find it amazing that I'm writing this blog looking to share my experiences with whoever wants to stop by and hopefully I'll be sharing many success stories as we move along. Gosh, there is so much to say, but going along with the title of the blog I'll talk about where I am today.

I am happily married to the love of my life and we now have a baby boy named Dante who is 1 year and a half old. She is crazy enough to support me on all my endeavors and I am beyond thankful for this and everything else she does.

I am playing poker quite regularly but not as much as I would like to. It is because of this that I think I've been making mistakes on certain spots, getting impatient and making the wrong moves. The silly thing is that a lot of those times I knew I was beat or at the very least had a hunch telling me not to call, bet or shove. But I want to think that I have learned from those mistakes.

So here is the thing: I am writing this blog for many reasons. I want to chronicle my adventures and progress and I want to be honest with myself. Also, this is another form of maintaining my discipline as there will be a track record of what I'm doing and by golly I want this record to be a winning one. Also because it looks like there is a lot of people in positions similar to mine, and who knows? Maybe my experiences could be of some use for others at some point.

Thank you for reading and I look forward to this so much!

Pd. I will talk about the "why" of the title of my blog in following posts! BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop