Saturday, December 11, 2004

Texas Dolly

So inevitably I end up at the poker tables of the Halifax Casino after the firm party - about 4AM, breaking all the rules about being too drunk to play correctly. The luck from the MacDuff bowtie proved fleeting, though I had such great opening hands I couldn't fold before the flop. Anyway, playing along as conservatively as I can, won only one hand all night with an Ace-Ten suited - early raise pays off into a straight ten-high, thanks to a fortuitous turn. But I couldn't hold it, losing my most sizable chunk on the infamous Doyle Brunson hand: Ace-Queen offsuit. Limped into the pot, flopped Queen-junk-junk, raise, get re-raised, turn is junk so I raise again only to get re-raised... at this point the others drop out and only then do I start thinking about the hands that have me beat. But my problem is the classic probability problem. The only guy remaining in the pot has won the last 3 hands on superior opening hands (If heads comes up 3 times in a row, it must be time to bet tails?) The hand before he made a miraculous pull with a pair of Jacks in the hole and a Jack on the river. Could he really be sitting there with Aces? No way, I think. The only hand he could have that kills me are the pocket Kings, and even then I still have the river for the Ace to top out. It is one of the things about games that are not no-limit. Tough to get guys out of the pot, but in this case also tough to fold the last $20 when by all rights you have a played a decent hand and may not see good cards for awhile. And so the inevitable followed... The river is junk, he bets and I call. "You've got pocket Kings, I assume" say I to the guy hiding behind a humongous stack of chips. "Well, if you already knew my hand, why did you pay to see it?" he responds. Should have listened to Doyle, but the inherent beauty and mystery of the game live on, and maybe it was worth 40 pounds - play 10-2 but not Ace-Queen? Well here is just some more anecdotal evidence to justify the hilarity. Especially since staring down at the 5 cards on the board after I have lost most of my stack, and cursing the old Texas Dolly, I cannot help but notice that the river was a deuce, and the turn was a 10. Too damn funny.

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