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Things are a little slow around here

Let me apologize for the billionth time about my lack of new posts around here. Honestly, I'm exhausted. My son's been keeping my wife and I awake and on our feet for the past 3 weeks and the sleep deprivation is starting to take its toll on the both of us.

What does this mean? Well, the more tired I am, the less I feel like playing poker. I'm not a champ at the 3/6 tables: playing tired will only hurt my bankroll. And if I don't play, I don't write. Although some of you would be interested in hearing stories about my son or my time playing Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, most of you would stop reading and possibly never come back.

So let me give a quick update on my more recent gambling and we'll leave it at that.

Last weekend, I cleared a solid £83 at Casino on the Park's blackjack tables. Took me just under three hours to clear the bonus and I'm quite happy with the result.

I also finished up my monthly bonus at InterPoker's 1/2 tables. Although I managed to play 2/4 and £1/£2 when those stakes were available, I cannot help but wonder how much longer InterPoker and the rest of the Cryptologic network will be able to stick around. Frankly, there are very few games available at stakes higher than 1/2 and I'm not willing to keep grinding away in the 1/2 rock garden, bonus or no.

Right now, I'm not quite sure where I'm headed in regards to poker and gambling. Although my skills may rust up a bit from lack of play, I truly believe that poker is much like riding a bike: you may wobble a little when your first start up again, but in the end it all comes back to you.

With my limited playing time and my extreme exhaustion, I just haven't felt up to putting in the hours. Although I'll continue clearing any blackjack bonuses that come along, my gambling time will remain somewhat limited for the next couple months.

I really hope this U.S. ban thing turns around everywhere. I know I keep saying that, but I really want this thing over. Unless I'm playing at PokerStars or Full Tilt, the number of games available to me are quite pathetic. Throw in the fact that I'm not too keen on returning to the NL tables and my poker career is in real trouble (check out CC's latest post for his observations on the demise of mid-stakes LHE).

I'm exhausted, so that's it for today. The trick or treaters and my son's bath time will both keep me fairly busy tonight, so it looks like another night of zero gambling.

Hopefully my funk will lift after I've managed to sleep more than 2 or 3 hours in an evening...I'm sure it will.

See ya...

Keep reading "Things are a little slow around here"

Tongue-tied


Sorry - no real post today. I was out yesterday dealing with my son's diagnosis of being tongue-tied. Who knew that that was a real thing? Anyway, the fix is to cut the thin piece of skin under the tongue to allow the tongue to easily hit the top of the mouth and the outside portion of the lower lip. This will help him swallow less air when eating and will also prevent him from having a possible speech impediment when older.

Other than that, my day was spent helping my wife take care of our screaming son. Not quite full-blown colic, but I'd definitely classify it as "colicky-lite".

So, I'm exhausted and don't have much energy to give my readers much to read.

I will give a quick update on what I've been doing, however:


  • Playing Dead Rising on Xbox 360.

  • Playing Elder Scrolls: Oblivion on Xbox 360.

  • Grinding out the $100 monthly reload bonus at InterPoker. The quality of opponents is now brutal at Interpoker: a horrible mix of rocks and TAGs. I'm currently down $120 in my quest for the $100 bonus; hopefully, I can turn it around this weekend and clear the bonus with a bang.

  • Clearing the first of two $120 bonuses at PokerStars. The action at Stars is pretty good now: lots of 3/6 tables = Happy Klopzi!

This weekend, I'm planning on squeezing in some Xbox time and some poker. I may even throw in some time at Casino On The Park and grind out a blackjack bonus (£100 monthly reload bonus).

That's it for me! Have a great weekend everyone! I'll try and get some sleep over the next couple days and come back Monday with some honest-to-goodness poker content.

Have a good one...

Keep reading "Tongue-tied"

So tired...

Well, I learned one important lesson last night: if your newborn son is having problems sleeping, there is very little chance of getting any reasonable time spent at the virtual tables. As much as I tried, I barely managed to squeeze in about 23 minutes at the tables last night as my son squirmed and farted his way through an extremely restless evening.

First off, I'm really starting to fear for InterPoker. I loved that site: they had a bunch of craptastic players and the best monthly bonus on the market. Last night, I logged on at 8:30 PM EST and was saddened to find only three semi-full $1/$2 LHE tables going. There was no sign of any full ring $2/$4, $3/$6 or even $5/$10 tables.

I hope that Cryptologic changes its mind and invites U.S. based players back with some incredible bonuses and other incentives. Otherwise, PokerStars and Full Tilt may end up seeing more of my time.

I did manage to install the extra 512 MB of RAM into my laptop. I thought it'd be a difficult procedure since Best Buy charges $120 to do this for you. Well, it took me all of ten minutes to do it and that's counting the 7 minutes I spent getting some baby bottles sterilized.

Unfortunately, I never got the chance to hit the tables hard with my new found memory. I did send off an e-mail to the fine folks at PokerRoom concerning the strange black-out graphical glitch that I experience when playing 3 or more tables. Although the issue failed to repeat itself with my new RAM in place, I really feel the bug was introduced in an early October software update and was not corrected by a simple hardware upgrade.

I would have played at PokerRoom for a bit last night had their been any good tables going. At 7:30 PM, there was only one $3/$6 LHE table running (avg. pot size was only $23...yuck) and three equally crappy $2/$4 tables. I hope that the OnGame network reconsiders their ban of U.S. players; otherwise, I may find myself having to play elsewhere due to lack of traffic.

Unfortunately, I'll also have to give up on the $500 bonus at PokerRoom unless I manage to find a lot of time to sink into poker in the next month. In order to clear the bonus, I'll need to fit 76 table hours of $3/$6 LHE into my increasingly insane schedule. While this isn't a problem if I can play four tables at once, the new traffic realities at PokerRoom make this an unlikely scenario.

I'll stick with InterPoker and PokerStars for now, with a little Full Tilt and Party Poker thrown in for good measure. I may also visit Doyle's Room as well, since they are still open to all U.S. players; however, their LHE traffic seemed pretty low last night as well.

One last thing: it seems that the latest patch to PokerAce HUD is unable to display stats when playing at any of PokerStars' "fast" tables. Without PokerAce, it's a little difficult for me to play four tables at once. Still, PokerStars has enough regular LHE tables running to make this a moot point. The PokerAce software is also being fixed up as we speak, so I'm not too worried.

Anyway, it was a long night with very little personal time for me. Oh well, family comes first and poker will get what's left over. I'm going to try and hit the tables for a bit tonight if I can shake this "exhausted" feeling I'm having; otherwise, I'll be killing zombies in Dead Rising.

Have a good one!

Keep reading "So tired..."

Who knew?


My nights have taken on a more hectic tone since the birth of my son. My wife takes care of him all day long. Once I'm home from work, I do my very best to take over as many baby-handling duties as I can in an attempt to allow my wife to get a few hours sleep.

Last night, this very scenario played out as expected. However, I did have one small problem: after changing, feeding and burping my son, what was I to do with my time? The avenues of leisure time activities were limited by the fact that I was holding my son in my arms (he's not colicky, per se, but we need to keep him up for at least a half-hour after feedings to help him deal with gas-related pain).

Although I'd planned on playing some Dead Rising on the Xbox 360 (great zombie game, by the way!), I couldn't figure out a way to play the game with only one hand.

Then I realized that the solution was staring me right in the face: poker!

After double-checking that everything was calm on the baby front, I fired up four tables (two on PokerStars, two on InterPoker) and played for about an hour while my son slept away. How did I do? About as well as one can expect when holding a baby in one arm.

In other news, I've been having some problems with the PokerRoom software. As soon as I open three or more tables, the PokerRoom tables showing graphical glitches. The glitch results in portions of the tables' windows to turn black, completely obscuring the table, players, or cards that would normally be shown.

In an attempt to correct the problem, I've gone out and purchased an extra 512 MB of ram for my laptop. If this doesn't do the trick, I guess PokerRoom will get an e-mail from me. I'm sure we'll find a solution to the problem: I find that poker rooms are fairly good in getting work done if it means more money for them. In the meantime, if anyone has experienced a similar issue with the PokerRoom software, please e-mail me if you can help out.

My plans for tonight include: spending some time with my wife and son, installing the new RAM in my laptop, and playing some one-handed baby poker! I may even play some Dead Rising or Oblivion on the Xbox 360 if I get the chance (though I'd rather spend that free time relaxing with my wife).

I can't wait to get home: I miss my wife and son...

See you at the tables!

By the way, that isn't my son in the picture...in case you were wondering...if it's your son, let me know and I'll take the picture down...

Keep reading "Who knew?"

Back to work

Well, I'm back to work in more ways than one. First off, I'm officially back at the office, busting my ass for the betterment of society. Secondly, I've started to hit the virtual felt again in the hopes of regaining my old form.

I actually renewed my online gambling career last Thursday when I partook of Party Poker's insanely generous bonus offer: $15 in my PartyCasino account with a 1x WR! It took me about 3 minutes to clear that bonus to the tune of $16.50 profit.

On Saturday, I took advantage of another Party Poker bonus: $15 with a 25x raked hand requirement. Armed with $15, I hunkered down at a $25 NL table and played passably well until I made the correct move with unfortunate results.

The table maniac limped in from the CO and I reraised with my AQ on the button in an attempt to isolate. The both of us saw a rainbow flop of all rags and when the maniac checked to me, I popped the $6 pot to $10. The maniac called, as he was wont to do based on his PT numbers and his earlier play.

When the turn brought a second club to the board and the maniac bet out, I put him on a flush draw and decided that my A high was good: I pushed for my last $8 and he called. The river brought the ten of hearts and I knew that I'd lost: my opponent showed the QcTc and took the $30 pot.

I'd blame my opponent, but he was only following his instincts and playing the only way he knew how. I was overly aggressive and was lucky that I was actually ahead on the turn.

Finally, I played a little blackjack at the Will Hill Casino for the $40 monthly bonus and I played some $1/$2 LHE at Will Hill yesterday in order to clear the £25 monthly bonus. I would have played $2/$4 or $3/$6, but the Cryptologic network just doesn't have the traffic now that U.S. players have been banned.

I feel bad for all my U.S. readers: I hope things turn around soon for all of us. Without the U.S. traffic, many sites (other than the fine folks at Full Tilt and PokerStars) are becoming increasingly unplayable.

That's it for me: pediatrician appointment this afternoon for my son.

I may play some poker tonight, but it's unlikely. I'm running on 2 hours sleep (caught in 30 minute chunks) and don't think I'll be able to function with any semblance of normalcy until I've managed a good night's rest. I just hope that sleep is possible given my son's propensity to stay awake between the hours of 11 pm and 7 am, crying all the while as the gas in his system gives him a sound beating from the inside.

I never thought I'd find myself hoping that my son could just burp or fart at 3 in the morning so that my wife and I could get a little sleep.

Have a good one...

Keep reading "Back to work"

It's a boy!

Sorry I haven't been around for the past two weeks, but life gave my wife and I an unexpected surprise.

On Wednesday, October 4th, my wife was admitted to the hospital and informed that she would be induced into labour. My wife wasn't sick and neither was the baby: however, for both their sakes, the time had come for the baby to make its way out into the world.

I won't give any further details regarding the trials and tribulations of labour and delivery. Suffice it to say that at 12:59 PM on Saturday, October 7th, my son was born and my life has been irrevocably changed for the better. For those with children, you know what I'm talking about.

I'm now at home with my wife and son. While my family recovers from the ordeals we faced at the hospital, I am helping out around the house to keep things running as smoothly as possible.

How does this impact my poker playing? Well, I haven't played at all since the beginning of the month, but I will step back into the ring soon - possibly as early as tomorrow.

How will this impact my blog? I may have fewer posts, but I will stick with writing about poker and money and not go down the path of discussing my son and the cute things he does.

Anyway, I've gotta go (duty calls and such). I just wanted to let everyone know that my son was born and is doing great! I'm really looking forward to getting to know him better.

As for the blog, I'll most likely start posting regularly again starting next Monday.

Until then, enjoy your poker, your wives, your husbands, your sons, your daughters, and all the rest.

See you next week...

Keep reading "It's a boy!"

No poker just yet

I still haven't played any poker since Monday. I'm still getting acquainted with my new Xbox 360. However, I will be hitting the tables for at least a couple hours tomorrow night in a desperate attempt to start winning back the cost of the gaming console and the accessories.

Before I go, let me just give my opinion on the whole online poker thing: it's gonna be ok. I'd say it's gonna be great, but I'll hold off on that opinion until I see how well newer players are able to fund their new poker accounts.

There should be enough fishy players kicking around online right now to keep things profitable for a little while yet. And when things turn sour, I'll move into the world of professional video game playing.

My month in review will be in place in the next couple days. I'm just too busy to handle it right now.

Have a good one.

Keep reading "No poker just yet"

Mixed Feelings

I was going to put up my Month in Review post for September, but I lost my numbers and will have to do it tomorrow. Needless to say, September was pretty good to me. Although I plan on plugging away at PokerRoom over the next month or two, I am a little discouraged by what's been happening down south.

So, the U.S. government's decided to kick online poker square in the nuts. Good stuff. Although I'm Canadian and can play whenever I want, I see this nonsense causing problems.

My biggest concerns are:


  1. Will this new legislation prevent newer players from joining in the fun?

  2. How many sites will dry up due to lack of players?

  3. How good will the games be in the 8PM EST - 12PM EST?
As I pondered these questions yesterday while "destroying" the games at PokerStars and PokerRoom for 3 BB/100, I figured that I may want to look into the whole Xbox 360 thing again.

While out shopping last night, I noticed that Walmart had the Xbox 360 on sale for $450 CDN. This particular bundle came with both Project Gotham Racing 3 and NHL 2K7.

In the past, I'd held off on getting the Xbox 360 because I didn't have an HD-ready television. However, I now have something even better: a 21" Samsung LCD monitor! I figured that if I picked up the Xbox and a set of headphones, I could actually play poker or play video games without tying up the TV.

In a perfect world, my wife could watch Cityline and Sugar as I played the Xbox 360. How sweet would that be? Pretty sweet is the answer, so I made a big ticket impulse buy.

I picked up:

  • Xbox 360 console (w/ 20 GB HDD, wireless controller, headset, PGR3, NHL 2K7)

  • The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion

  • Rechargeable battery pack and recharger for the wireless controller

  • VGA output cable for the Xbox 360

  • Sony surround sound headphones
The total cost for everything came to about $685 CDN (about $610 USD). Not too bad, and quite manageable given the current size of my bankroll.

I got everything home and set up the XB360 and unwrapped my games: I was so ready to give this mo-fo a shot. After about 20 minutes, I had everything plugged in and ready to go: last thing to do was plug my headphones into the console and ...

...And that's when I realized that the Xbox 360 doesn't have any earphone jacks. Well shit! I looked at my new Xbox 360: the world's most expensive paper-weight. I was really pissed off when I grabbed my laptop and started looking around to see if any headphones existed that offered surround sound with an optical digital input.

I found a few "gaming" headphones but I wasn't looking to pay extra for headphones that include a silly little microphone - I don't do the whole online gaming thing. I also didn't want to wait for headphones to be shipped to me: I wanted them ASAP.

This morning, Sony answered the call with their MDRDS1000 5.1 Channel Digital Surround Headphone System. I'll be picking up a pair today and we'll see how cool the Xbox 360 is tonight: I seriously can't wait.

Although I won't be playing any poker tonight, I will hit the tables later this week and over the weekend as well. Hopefully, there will be tables available.

In the end, I think this new legislation thing will be a small bump in the road until the U.S. government figures out a way to profit from online poker. Until then, I've got some cool new toys to play with: most importantly, a new baby due to arrive in about 4 weeks!

Have a good one - back tomorrow with the month in review.

Keep reading "Mixed Feelings"