Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Sometimes I will start to think about stuff and then it becomes more stuff and then I start to ponder of what I really think about the stuff I am wondering about. See how the mind can get so clogged with stuff. I need to have that button under internet (mind) to clean the stuff out. Create some more room for more stuff.

Lately I have been thinking about friends. Who are they? I suppose you can have friends at all levels. You have friends that really know you and how you think. What your goals are and will help you in any way possible. They support you in your goals and will not put you down when you want to do something different. I guess this is a person you can confide in and know some of your inner thoughts. I wonder sometimes who that is. Now I am not talking about the significant other. This person really knows you and is the confidant in your live. I am talking about friends. Probably first level.

You have work friends. People you work with and hang out with on a daily basis. People that know you on a work level and see you day to day in your good times and bad times. Not someone you would confide in unless they are real friends. I would think these friends would cover your back. Take care of each other.

How about friends you meet outside of work and you accidently meet somehow. Strike up a conversation with and then you just keep in contact. Sometimes they can be the best friends you can have. People that have the same common interests that you have and some of the goals you might have. You can also help each other meet your goals by pushing each other along.

I don't know what got me thinking about friends. Maybe it is because I haven't heard from some of them for awhile and then when you try to make contact you are either ignored or they don't want to be friends anymore. You just have to wonder about friends. I do know that friends change over the course of time. Who were your friends 30 years ago and then you think who are my friends now. What happened? Time. We are in a changing world. We change, we grow and I guess friends change too.

See I have too much stuff on the brain.

I have been playing a lot of poker lately and hope to continue. Trading is not easy in this market. I don't mind short trading just not yet. I don't like to chase the market.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Poker Day

I got up this morning ready for Lesson 3 of the Online Trading Academy. Sometimes I wonder if I get too much information in this head. I sometimes will start to over analyze things and then go into brain freeze and then can't seem to do anything. This then turns into procrastination because I don't know what to do. Is there a pill for that? The classes are going well just a lot of information and I keep taking notes. One nice thing about this is that all of the lessons are video taped and I can rewatch them at any time. Since this is actually lifetime I will probably keep listening to them live so one day it becomes engrained in my head.

After the class was done and I had a chance to look at the stocks I have been following I then started playing poker. I put in nine sessions and then this evening I went to Jokers Casino and put in time at the table for the tournament. Tonight I did come in first and took down the tournament cash. This does pay for one of the tournaments at Wildhorse this next month. I would like another cash to pay for both of the tournaments I would like to play. So far one down and now will work on the second one.

While I was in Las Vegas I decided to change my look from the cowboy hat. I should have put my sunglasses on with this one.
The chips are from the win tonight and the pink ones are T$1000 and the red are T$500 dollars. I had another stack of them that didn't make it into the picture as well.

I also started today going through my WSOP course book and studying that as well. Need to make sure I am ready for Wildhorse Casino. Some of you will notice that yes, I am playing with pink chips. I like these chips since they are worth T$1000 apiece. Figured some of you might like that since I am not a pink fan.

Time to call it a day and get ready for tomorrow.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Fathers Day

On Sunday we went and watched the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field. My sons took me and the sons of my friend went on the day long trip.

We left at 0800 in the morning and arrived in time to walk around the park and get something to eat before the game started. Wow, the food is expensive at the park. We had a very nice enjoyable day. The Mariners won the game with Cincinnati by the score of 1 - 0. Getting out of Seattle and back on I-90 was the event for us.

They have built some new roads around the stadium and when we got out of the parking garage we were directed out of the area. We ended up on a road headed south and had to try to find our way back to I-90 heading east. We did make it back to the Freeway and back on track for home. We got here about 8PM. Not bad. We were all tired. It was a fun day and being with our sons was a blast.

Monday I got up to attend my Stock Trading class and 10 minutes into it the computer went down. I called Charter and they said it would be back up in a few hours. Well, it ended up being around 6PM almost 10 hours later. So, I missed my class which I will make up for tomorrow morning. No poker of course. What did we do before computers. Thank goodness I had my iPhone to keep up with emails and twitters and Facebook.

I have been working on my poker strategy and I am thinking about writing a booklet on what I learned at WSOP as well as all of my reading of the books. This will be my poker plan like a business plan on how I intend to play the game.

I am looking forward to the next test which will be July 14-18 at Wildhorse Casino. I would like to play two times but will wait to see how I do up to that point here at Jokers Casino.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Expiration Friday

It has been a long week and having my trading classes four days this week. They are only about 2 hours in length but they are packed with information. Thank goodness I can go back and relisten to the lessons I need to make sure I understand. Today we talked about Trends and Timeframes.

Last night I played at Jokers Casino and did not do very well. My first hand played was a hand I still don't why I was there. It must have been a BB and a call all the way around. I had AQ and after the flop I put in a pot size bet. I had one caller and then the turn came Q. Now a pair of Q's is good with an Ace kicker but why would the other guy keep calling me. Of course I couldn't back off since the Q was the highest card on the board. I knew it had to be good. When we got done he turned over the flopped straight. I didn't see it at the beginning. I was watching the flush possibility but was not looking at the straight possibility. I must have lost about half of my chips during that one hand.

The rest of the night didn't go so well after that. I couldn't get the chips to grow so I was relegated to pushing every opportunity. Finally I came up with KQ and decided again this was the opportunity and some one called with A6 and they end up with a better two pair. I had a K on the turn and a Q on the river. Ok, out of the tournament and I go back to the drawing board of what did I learn from this. I guess I need to pay attention to the board.

I am reading Dan Harringtons book and he is very close to the teaching that I received from the WSOP. I will be rereading the Courseware from the WSOP and reading the two volumes of Harringtons books. Good information in both. I have to be careful of too much information and go into a mental block and not play good at all. I need to let the game come to me and do what is appropriate. Even if others don't do what I expect them to do I need to maintain because once I get to Wildhorse Casino then the players change and will play more to the book level. I just need to adjust to the way the players are playing.

This Sunday I am headed to a Mariners game with my sons and friends of ours. The boys are taking their dads to a baseball game. This should be fun. I am looking forward to this.

Having fun.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

A Very Good Day

Today has been a very busy day for me. You wouldn't think that a person not having a job would be busy. I spend a good share of my day reading and going over the stock market and trying to learn as much as I can. I am very anxious to get going and the day is getting closer.

Today I had a class at 1000 that went till 1200. This was a good class since he was going over trades that individuals had made and to see what we could learn from them. Watch out for tomorrow since tomorrow is the quadruple witching day. This is when the option and futures market will expire. We spent a lot of time reading the chart to see what we could learn from the past and what we can learn from seeing what takes place in the morning. Evidently a non trade day. I will be watching.

I was also notified from Scottrade, my platform for trading, that they had left an email for me on my community site. When I finally got a chance to look at the email I was flabergasted at what was said. A few days ago I wrote on my blog with Scottrade what I was doing, my goals, and where I was headed with my trading. I figured this was a way for me to keep a history of what I was doing. I do the same with this blog as well. I was told that they are going to use my blog as a featured blog. Wow, someone read it and liked what I wrote. Now they are going to feature it to the community. I might get someone reading my blog. I am excited about this and will see where it goes. I sent an email off to OTA since they were mentioned in the blog and maybe they might see some more students.

I will be playing poker tonight at Jokers. I have decided to stick with Jokers instead of going over to the Cable Casino. Right now I would prefer to stay closer to home and play right here. I would really like to see a few more people attend this one but will make do for the time being. I am going to make my play seem like a satellite into the Wildhorse events. Since the Wildhorse Casino events do cost more I will try to get into the money or win the tournaments so I can play in the bigger events. This will hopefully make me play for a reason and play to win instead of just playing for the fun of it.

Yesterday I played in two SnG's and had a 1st and a 2nd place finish. That always helps as well.

I am glad you are back home JB. Get better and get your rest.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Where is Summer?

I can't believe we are still running in the 70's around here. I can't complain too much because it is not raining and the sun is still shining. I have learned to not complain during this time of the year because I know what is coming around the corner. The treaded Fall and Winter. The time I want to head south for some better weather.

This week I have 4 days of classes for the XLT Trading Academy. So far it is going well and I am starting to understand what I need to do to trade correctly. Getting up at 0530 in the morning to go over the Market Briefing before the market opens is always the fun morning. Being a Swing Trader I won't have to be doing much of that during my trading day. I just need to be aware of what to look for and be able to work with the charts of the stocks I will be trading. We have some very good instructors that are showing us the ropes of trading.

I have been playing poker this week as well and my BR went down to the area of $70 and now after today I was able to bring it back up to $80.88. I have been working on multitabling and today I started up two of them. The one on my left was moving faster than the one on the right. The left one got down to 4 players and I was the chip leader. The right one was at 6 players and I was short stack so I decided to just go all in and finish this up and put all of my attention on the left game. After going all in a couple of times and winning the hands I then started to back off in my thinking for that game and in time I ended up getting my first place out of that game. Then still being 4 players on the left side I was able to give my full attention to this game. In the end I ended up in 2nd place and my BR was up now by $10.

I will be playing at Jokers this Thursday. My goal at this time is to make these tournaments my satellites for the bigger events at the Wildhorse Casino in Pendleton. This next month they will be hosting the Summer Poker Rodeo and I am hoping that I can play in a couple of the tournaments. Winning just one here will pay for possibly 2 tournaments. The buy ins are little bit higher than here so it will be good practice to treat these like attending a satellite. After attending the Poker Academy and reading Dan Harringtons books I hope to have good sessions. This will be a good test of my abilities to keep this going. So far so good but it has to get serious soon. I will be working on my Tournament BR now.

I do have goals for this next year. I want to cash at Wildhorse. Play in a WSOP event in 2011. And of course do well with my trading in Stocks. If I put my attention to doing well the money will be a by product.

I have a friend who is having surgery today and I wish him the ability to get well soon and get back at the tables. Maybe we can meet up at the 2011 WSOP and play a tournament. Take care JB and get well soon.

Having fun.

Sunday, June 13, 2010


I am a person that tries to stay away from confrontations. I don't like it when people start arguments and will do things that hurt other people. So, with that being said here I am playing poker.

Poker is a game that puts people at war against other players. I believe this is a skill game in that you have to understand how to go to war with the other players at the table. Of course in poker we do this without going to extremes as in a real war. But the mentality has to be there.

Off topic but what I am getting at is all the talk about the Ladies Tournament in the WSOP. Guys are signing up for this tournament because they are saying the equity is good? I really do not believe that the guys should be entering this tournament and they should not have been allowed to register. This is listed as a Ladies Tournament and needs to stay that way. Yes, in an open event everyone is welcome to play. I don't have the skill yet to play in an open event like the WSOP but I am learning and practicing with the game. I do play at Wildhorse in the Fall, Summer and the Spring events. That allows me to see where I am at in my learning process. It does cost me some money to enter but I need to know if I am getting better playing in these kinds of events.

The Ladies Tournament gives them the opportunity to play with each other and learn from each other. I am not saying it is less of a tournament but saying it does give them a tournment without the guys playing. I will say that when I play at our local casino and have a lady at the table I am more concerned about her and her style and how I will play against her. When I play against the guys at the table I know what I am trying to do.

I do know that the last time I played at Wildhorse I played in a seniors event and it was more fun than actually playing in an open. I felt more at ease and did not feel intimidated. Could that be the same with the Ladies Tournament? A place to play and not feel intimidated. Learn and then play opens? Come on guys stay out of the Ladies Tournaments.

Remember I don't like confrontations. Sometimes I like to go against the grain and see what happens.

I played in 4 SnGs last night and my BR is now: Tournament BR...$79.06

Have a good week.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Back to the Grind

Here it is Friday. Last night I was able to play at Jokers Casino. Where are the players? We ended up having only 9 players last night. I guess you can say we all made it to the final table. I like the structure of the game. We pay $35 and get $5000 in chips to start. We have 20 minute rounds.

I was able to pick up a few hands last night. Chip stack was growing and then I went card dead. I needed to start picking my spots and playing hands that maybe I wouldn't normally play. That wasn't working either. I would get raised or the person would c-bet. I ended up in fifth place for the night. Last hand was KK and the other person got his Ace on the flop.

Today was the first lesson from the OTA. It was a very informative day and does give me some work to do on the charts. Hopefully this weekend I can devote some time to the charts and find some that look good to trade. We learned about the Supply and Demand and putting in our horizontal lines. There is more to it than that but with lesson one you have to start with the basics.

A good friend of mine is having surgery this next week. Do well and listen to the doctors. Will be anxious to hear from you when your done with surgery. Get back to playing poker.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

WSOP Day 3

Today is one of the most important days for the Academy for me. This is the day that we would be doing hand analysis. We are done with the theory and we are now ready to start putting into practice what we have learned.

The sad part of today was having to call the shuttle company and let them know to pick me up tomorrow morning at 0945 to head back to the airport to fly home. The weather is nice and it would be nice to just stay in Las Vegas and play the game I enjoy.

In the WSOP Academy room the table is set up and when we get started there are only 9 of us sitting at the table with one pro. The pro today was Shawn Rice. He gives us the ground rules at the start and also lets us know that if we expected to be playing a lot of hands we would be disappointed. I did figure this would be slow going because of the analysis of each hand we were playing. Why we were playing what we did and how we could have played it differently.

One of the things that happened during this time was the stern part of the play. If we did not perform to the standards we had to explain ourselves on why and then listen to what we did wrong. This was a good learning experience. Shawn wanted us to listen and learn and play it right. Get the bad habits out of our style. I really appreciated the process.

Yes, I did some things wrong and I was talked to about my play. I think we all were at some point. He drove the points home though. On my last hand I had 77 and I didn't play it in position. I think you can guess what happened. I was lectured again and I knew it was coming. It was the last hand of the day but to Shawn it did not matter. I was given an opportunity and didn't take it. Now, when the hand was played out on the board I would have laid it down anyway but that wasn't the point. My betting should have taken the hand down before it got to the end if I had played the hand. It is position, position and position.

At the end of the day I went out and got some dinner. I then spent the last night in Las Vegas in the Pavilion and Amazon rooms watching the pros play one last time. I was also able to find my online coach and took a picture of him. I was hoping to say hi and meet him face to face but that didn't happen. Maybe next time I am in Vegas I can catch up with him.

It was a fun trip and now the work begins. I will keep updating the blog on my progress.

Last night I played a SnG (9) and placed 1st.
Tournament Bankroll ----- $91.31
HU and Cash Bankroll ---- $44.22
Live Bankroll ----------- $xxxx.xx

Tonight I will be playing at Jokers in the $35 NLHE Tournament.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

WSOP Academy Day 2

The second day was started by finishing up the theory and discussing the tournament we all played in the night before. The person sitting next to me at the poker table was the winner of the event and he won a chance to play for the main event seat early July. The prize was worth about $6000 to $7000 and of course the opportunity to play for more. I do wish him luck in the coming tournaments. He is also scheduled to attend another class in preparation for the event. Second and third place received the buyin to another class from the Academy.

We started working at the tables again with the three pros. They took turns alternating tables about every 30 to 45 minutes. Each time learning something new and to be able to learn what to do in our betting. Every hand tells a story and we have to be good readers of the hands. We are now given our ranges and the information on how to bet and when to bet. Read the story. Listen and watch the patterns the players will give you. As Mark Sief said he is very tired when done with a session of poker. You should be so involved that you don't know what is happening around you other than what is happening with those at the table.

At the end of the day we did take a test and I was happy to see that I was in the top 5% of the class in decision making. Wish I could have used that last night in the tournament. Of course if we all knew then what we learned in the two days it may have been a different ending.

After the class I went and found something to eat and then went to the pavilion and amazon room to watch the tournaments being played. I was able to watch the likes of Jen Harmon, Mike Matasow, David Williams, Erik Lindgren, Carlos Mortenson, Vanessa Ruosso, Amarillo Slim and Jonathan Little. It was fun while I was standing there that one of the dealers came up next to me and we started talking about the pros. He started relaying some stories to me and it was interesting. It was fun.

Tomorrow it was time to do the Hand Analysis. Off to the room and get some sleep.

Friday, June 04, 2010


Wednesday evening I decided to go try out my new strategy and see if I learned anything. I played in a tournament that was very fast paced and the chips were T$20,000. Rounds must have been around 5 - 10 minutes. It seems they were changing quite fast.

I started out real well and was building my chip stack and then got involved in a hand that took me down to about $13,000. I then sarted rebuilding and got myself up to around $22K and then started playing a hand that I should not have been in. I have Pocket 8's and the flop came 346. I figured I was still ahead and bet the pot and was followed. The turn was a Q. I didn't like that one but I didn't think he had the queen either. The River came Ad. Now there were 4 diamonds on the board. He probably had the diamond but would he have bet the flop with the diamonds. Could he have the A? Possible but then with the size of the bets would he have hung on and waited for the Ace?

We turned them over and I had my Pocket 8's and he had a Ace high Diamond flush with a pair of Aces. He was holding A5.

I am out of the tournament. I should have let it go and I didn't. I am learning the story of the cards and will only get better as the time goes on.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Day One Continued

I walk into the room and I see 4 poker tables all set up with the chips and cards ready to go. I am ready to play at that point. Now we are all waiting for the pros to come in and start the teaching. The four pros are Mark Seif, Mark Kroon, Shawn Rice and Jim Shipley. They sit up at the front of the class and they are introduced by the WSOP staff.

Mark Seif then gets up and welcomes us to the class and lets us know that we are part of a group of 5% that will get education on playing poker. He informs us that we are learning everything that they know about how to play poker. They will not hold anything back from us. This is the theory part of poker playing and going through the book lasted about the whole day. A lot of information was passed on to us. I was writing in the book as well as the pad I brought with me. I wasn't going to miss a thing.

The book we received has the following information inside:
Pre-Flop Strategy
Post-Flop Strategy
Stage Strategy

This book contains quite a bit of stuff in it but the knowledge really will come from sitting at the tables and playing the hands in front of these pros. You just know that the information you will receive will be something good. Greg Raymer, 2004 WSOP Main Event winner came in and talked with us.

We had class till about 6pm and then went on a dinner break and we are then to meet up in the Pavilion and we were to play tournament poker with the pros. I arrived at the pavilion room and located my seat at table 147 seat 7. The pro at our table was Mark Kroon, a very good online player. He showed us his skill level during the game. It was hard to play against him. I needed the next two days to finally understand what he was up to and how to play against him. He explained to us the next day what he was waiting for from us and of course we didn't know that.

We started at 7pm and we had 4 tables going. I was able to get down to the final two tables before I was short enough that I needed to start shoving. I did and ended up going out in 20th place for the tournament. My first goal was not to go out first. My second goal was to make the final table and then win the tournament. Well, at least I didn't go out first.

The person next to me when we started the tournament was the person who won the tournament and was given a $6,000 to 7,000 prize. The chance to play for a seat in the main event and take another main event class before playing again. Second and third place received about $2000 for another class with the academy.

After I was done with the tournament I then focused my attention on the other tournaments going on in the Pavilion and Amazon rooms. I walked around and found and watched Chris "Jesus" Ferguson, Freddy Deeb, Phil Helmuth, Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu, Doyle Brunson, Todd Brunson, Jen Harman.

After watching all of these players and being pretty tired from the busy day I finally headed off to my room on the 17th floor and the great view and was ready to go to bed and get some sleep and get ready for the next day.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Day 1 at WSOP

The room was fabulous in the Mystique tower of Rio. I had a living room area and then across from that was the king size bed. I had another room for the clothes and the sinks. It was a big area that had a refrigerator in it. Then of course there was the bathroom that was again oversize. This was a nice room overlooking the pool area and was on the 17th floor. What a view. If I can download the pictures from my phone I will try and put them on the blog.

I got to bed that night and the bed was harder than what I am used to. I wear an insulin pump and lying on my side was not working. At home I can lay on my side and not even know I have the pump on. I did set my alarm for early since I did not know the start time of the Academy. I did not receive any information from them on times before I left home. I knew where I was supposed to be by walking around and finding the location but times and agenda were not available to me.

At 0400 music started playing in my room. I woke up and quickly found the location it was coming from. Someone had set the radio alarm in the room and I was the beneficiary of the wake up at 0400. Nice joke. Next time I will check the alarms and make sure they are off. I have the alarm on my iPhone that I use if I need an alarm. Usually I don't. I tend to wake myself up when I need to. I turned the alarm off and went back to sleep. Again the radio started playing and when I looked at the clock radio it now said 0500. This time I spent the time to find the actual off switch and then rolled back over and tried to go to sleep. I was going to wake up at 0600 and start getting ready for the day.

I got downstairs and went over to the Cafe that I found and ordered breakfast. The hallways were guiet. Breakfast was good and now the start of the day. I went over and sat in front of the WSOP Academy registration booth so I wouldn't miss anyone and at around 0830 someone came by and they told us they would start at 0930. Ok, I was up a little too soon this morning. With a little bit of help I might add. Now, I wait for 0930 and get registered. When I walked up to the desk at 0930 I found out why I didn't get anything from them. I was not on their list of participants. I paid for this back in March and I wasn't on the list? Ok, don't let this upset your day. This is supposed to be fun, educational and something I have wanted to do for a long time. I am not going to let them ruin it for me.

I received my book and later got my nametag. The book itself is the courseware for the program. I was anxious to open this up and learn all the secrets of playing poker like a pro. I couldn't wait to sit down and open the pages up and start reading. I am sooooo ready for this. I have watched the pros on television and now I am going to have the chance to see them in person and have them talk to us about playing the game. The excitement was starting to build.

How many people will show up for the class? They had 4 tables set up in the back with everything on them to play a game. Looks like about 40 people will be here. We all sat down and waited for the Pros to enter the room. I want to be a sponge and soak up the knowledge. I want to listen to every word they say and follow what they are doing at the table. The fact I was not on the registered list of participants was not going to deter me from having the time of my life right here and right now.

To be continued....

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Back from WSOP

I arrived home yesterday from Las Vegas. It was a fun trip as well as a big learning experience for me. I guess you can say it had the WOW factor.

I am all packed and ready to go. I decided to take the duffel bag instead of the backpack as I new I would have some books to bring back and I needed the extra room. Our daughter-in-law took me to the airport which made it easier for me not having a vehicle parked there. Saves us money as well. It does get expensive parking in their lots.

In the airport I waited for the TSA folks to open up the gates and I figured since I am about 2 hours early for the flight it would give me a chance to sit and relax. Once the gate was opened I waited for the first initial people to go through and then I walked up and pulled my DL and flight ticket out for her. I told her that I was a diabetic and that I had an insulin pump on and what if anything did I need to do. She asked me to put the pump towards the front and then she got on the radio and told the person on the other side that I had an insulin pump on. I was asked to walk through and when I did no alarms went off. I was then asked to step over to another area and was asked to hold the insulin pump in my hands. My hands were then wiped to see if I had any explosives on them. I was then frisked and they went through my duffel bag and especially my diabetic bag I carry with me. I was deemed a safe and was let go to go into the terminal. Was all that necessary for a diabetic with an insulin pump? Will my life now be this way where I will be searched everytime I walk into an airport? Doesn't seem right to me.

Once the plane got up into the air it started to get bumpy. I was coming from Salt Lake once through a thunder and lighting storm and now that seems like nothing compared to leaving that day. We had to get up to the 20,000 ft level before it finally settled down.

One of my pet peeves while riding in the airplane is the person in front of me moving his seat in the back position. How much room do you think that gives me? I feel like I want to do the same to him. See how they feel with less room.

Flying from Salt Lake to Las Vegas was even bumpier than the previous leg. In fact most of the way we had this and the attendants had to cancel the drink service because it just wasn't safe for them to be in the aisle. Arriving into Las Vegas got scary as well. It was reported they were having winds at 10-30 mph gusts. When we came in for the landing the plane actually turned sideways going straight. That was a first and I was holding onto the arms on the seats. I hate flying. This reaffirms that.

Getting to the Rio and checking in was good. I put my stuff up in the room and my first order of business was to get the lay of the land. I wanted to find the WSOP area and find out where I was to spend my next few days. After a number of hours I did find the area and found a nice Cafe as well that I would spend the next few days eating at. I did play some Video Poker and that was it. I was tired and went back to the room to get ready for the next day.

To be continued......