Upon arriving at the BSC poker room, I was sent to a short-handed table, I believe it had just been opened up. I recognized one of the players already there. It was Willie, who was the guy who caught me when he limped with pocket Aces (see here) and the guy I had a straight flush against not too long ago (see here). Just as I was ready to get a hand, a new dealer pushed in. It was Michelle. As I’ve explained before (see here, for example), Michelle is a cute, very friendly dealer that I have a hard time winning a hand with. Although we are pals, she has pushed me so few pots over the years that she once told me she owes me “100 pots.” And since then, I’ve kiddingly kept track of how many she still owes me on those rare occasions when she actually does push the pot in my direction. This is such a running joke between us that I sometimes kid her that I’ll just take a break during her entire down.
This time, with the table short-handed, I had already inquired about what the rake would be and then asked what it would be if I sat out for all of Michelle’s down. I was just kidding, of course. It had actually been awhile since Michelle had dealt to me. As I’ve mentioned, she’d much rather play than deal, and the last dozen or so times I’ve seen her at BSC she’s been playing, not dealing. I commented about being surprised to see her actually dealing. She told me she had sworn off playing and was only going to be dealing from now on. Since I heard her make that statement at least a dozen times, I told her I didn’t believe it. I might have said that in a more colorful way.
Anyway, Michelle started dealing and players began filling the seats. While the table was short-handed, I actually did win a few very small pots, mostly when nobody called a flop bet. None of these pots amounted to even $20. But unless it was just the blinds, I actually counted backwards on the pots she owed me, so I would say “83!”, then “82!” as she pushed me those small pots. She commented thought that since it was mostly $1 chips in those pots, it was more like the 2/4 game I used to play than the NL game I was now playing.
By the time the table had filled up, I believe I had reason to say to her, “and that’s 81.” So with the table finally full, in the small blind I was dealt 2/3 off suit. With about 6 limpers in front of me, I went ahead and added a buck to see the flop. The big blind did not raise.
The flop came A-10-2. I checked, and Willie acted next and bet $10. Three others called. That made the pot $54 (before adjusting for the rake) when it came back to me. With bottom pair, I figured I was getting a good price to see the turn card (dunno if that’s true or if it was a bad call. It seemed like a decent call at the time).
The turn was another 2, giving me trips. Nice. So I led out with a $40 bet. Willie called, and everyone else folded.
The river was a seemingly meaningless four, and I should add, no flush was possible. Willie is a good player, as I’ve indicated previously. I was not sure what to do. I was kind of thinking there that he wasn’t going to call a bet unless he had the best hand. I was tempted to check and see what he did. But I figured I probably did have the best hand and that I should try to get some value for it. I didn’t want to bet too much and scare him off, so I put out $50.
I really enjoyed the next minute or so, even as I was wondering if I was gonna take this pot or not. Willie went into the tank and was clearly agonizing over the decision. The fact that he didn’t call right away had me fairly convinced I had the best hand. If he’s got the case deuce, that’s an insta-call if he doesn’t raise instead. Based on the conversation he was having with himself, it was clear he wasn’t thinking of raising and it was clear he didn’t have the last deuce.
Since it was just the two of us, he was talking aloud about what I could have, speculating. I guess he was probably trying to get a read on me by seeing how I reacted to his speculation. I tried to remain totally stoic, and kept looking away. I’m sure Willie is the type of good player who remembers me and has a pretty good read on my game. Note to myself: Next time I play heads up against Willie, remember what I just wrote and try to bluff—he’ll never see it coming.
He kept speculating that I had A/10. “That’s the only thing I can put you on,” He finally called. I am pretty sure he felt that he was going to lose, but thought it was worth the $50 to see what I had there—and knew from the past I wasn’t going to show him if he didn’t call.
He mucked when I showed my hand. I’m guessing he had an Ace with a weak kicker, maybe even a 4 so he caught 2 pair on the river. But my hand totally shocked him. “I never would have put you on that. You called $10 on the flop with a pair of deuces?” It took some restraint on my part not to respond. If he thinks I made a bad call, that’s to my (future) advantage, right? No need to point out that there were three callers before I put that $10 in the pot, and if it had just been heads up there, I would have folded to his $10 flop bet like a cheap suit. So I just smiled and said nothing. I hope he doesn’t read my blog, since we’ll no doubt be facing each other again. Actually, he might read the blog, since he’s as friendly with the BSC crew as I am and they may have mentioned it to him.
I did say one thing, but not to Willie. To Michelle I said, “That’s 80!” Then I added, “Who are you and what have you done with Michelle? You can’t be her!” She laughed, and then for the first time, she commented on the notebook I carry in my shirt pocket. I mentioned my shirt-pocket most recently in this recent post here. The first post where I mentioned it--and explained it's purpose--about a provacative young lady who was driven crazy by it, can be found here.
“Do you keep track of the pots you win with that notebook? Is that what it’s for?” I started to pull out the notebook, “yes, that’s what it’s for.”
“Is it just for me, or do you track your wins with all the dealers?” By this time, I was ruffling threw the pages of the book to show her. To my great fortune, it was a brand new book, so almost all the pages were totally blank.
“Just yours. That’s why the book is mostly blank.” She could see that all but one page was blank as I showed it to her. Heh heh.
Anyway, Willie is a tough player, and besting him made me feel very good. Also, confusing made me feel good too. Especially since he is a great hand-reader. When I first got to the table, he amazed some guy who laid down a pair of Jacks by telling him he had put him on Jacks. But he sure as hell didn’t put me on 2/3 there.
I won another good sized pot—not against Willie—when I flopped a set of 9’s and had it turn into a boat when the board paired Jacks. Later, there was a really weird hand against what I presumed to be a mother/daughter team. The mother looked familiar; I’d seen her in the room before. The daughter didn’t seem familiar to me.
There were some limpers, including the mother, two seats to my right on the button, and the daughter, one seat to the right on the small blind. In the big blind, I had Ace/King offsuit. I raised an additional $12 to $14. It folded back to the mom, who called. Then the daughter announced, “all in.” WTF?
She had over $140. I had her well covered, but I’m not one to risk over $100 on just AK there. The daughter had been a totally reasonable player up until then; if anything, I’d classify as more of a “nit” as anything else. She’d never come close to making any kind of bet that big preflop before. And if she had that good a hand, why did she only limp from the small blind before I raised? And if she had a really, really good hand, how much value was she getting for her big raise? The pot wasn’t that much to be so anxious to take it down there. I couldn’t really put her on a hand that made sense, especially based on her play up until then. For the record, I played with her another couple of hours and never saw her do anything like that again. This hand was a total aberration for her.
I made it looked like it was a hard choice (not sure why I thought it was necessary), but I folded. The hand bugged me for the rest of the night. Since the only caller of my raise was her mom, I had to figure that had something to do with her action, tho I don’t know how. It just struck me that it had something to do with it. I was thinking, well, she had Aces and wanted to make sure her mom folded, but was hoping I had Kings or Queens and would call. But why not raise before it got to me if that’s the case? I obviously didn’t see every hand she played, but I never saw her limp with a big hand before or after this hand. Anyway, it left a bad taste in my mouth, and I wish I knew what she had. But I wasn’t prepared to pay $140 to find out.
To make things worse, later the father/husband of these ladies joined the table. I lost a few chips to him when he flopped a boat and slowplayed it. He had two queens, I had AQ and called his preflop raise. I thought I was good when the flop came Q1010, so I bet out, and he smooth called. Then I began to smell a rat. I checked the turn as did he. When he shoved on the river, I figured he had a 10 and folded. I’m not going to go broke on top pair, top kicker there. Unlike his daughter, he was kind enough to show me his QQ, so at least I knew I made the right play. He said he was surprised I folded.
A bit later, Ginger came to the table, this time as a dealer, not a player. Of course, Ginger has been featured in a number of my posts lately, including my previous post (see here). But since she was dealing she was totally professional, (and hence, not as much fun as in the previous post). However, her friend Faith was playing over at the 2/5 game. Faith has appeared in a few of my posts, most recently here.
So while Ginger is dealing at my table, I see Faith come by to whisper in her ear. I didn’t hear what she said, but Ginger was kind enough to tell me. Apparently just then in the 2/5 game, Faith lost $1400 on pocket kings to a set of deuces.
Seriously, how do you risk $1400 on the worst hand in poker? I mean, really? Faith needs to start reading my blog, don’t you think? Of course, Ginger didn’t have the details of how the hand played out. But if the Kings didn’t improve, I dunno how risk that much on a pocket pair.Anyway, Faith was not happy. But I understand she has a rich husband so it probably didn’t ruin her evening too much.
And I left the session up more than a buy-in, and didn’t get burned with the dreaded pocket kings, so it was a good night for me.