Nov. 8th, 2008

peterbirks: (Default)
Adopting my normal strategy for overcoming depression, I went to Wates to buy some wallpaper and other DIY stuff, and I ordered more than a hundred quid's worth of books from Abe and Amazon. I have many many books in the flat that I need to read, and I suspect that the three poker books I have bought (2z Moshman, 1x Hansen) will remain only flipped through until it's too late and they are out of date.

Greenstein's excellent Ace On The River, which I have been glancing through before going to sleep, recommends becoming "expert" in lots of different poker games, because you need to be able to exploit wherever the weak players choose to play.

While I sympathize with this view for live games, it's a bit more problematic online. I know that I really ought to be practising razz, high-low limit games, PLO and so on, but this falls foul of two hurdles. One is that it entails giving up profitable time at Hold 'em where I am currently making a profit. The other is that I might fall into the trap of being a jack of all trades and a master of none. Greenstein, I think, falls into the common trap of good poker players of assuming that others can do what they can. Although mastering lots of different games might be the best strategy for the naturally gifted player (particularly one with a strong mathematical and psychological brain), for the average player wanting to improve his or her game (and it is to this reader that Greenstein pretends to address himself), getting good at just one game, and sticking to it, probably has the best EV.

That said, my experience at limit has often worked well in strannge ways in NL. And knowledge of short-stack play in tournaments works well in cash games when you are faced with four or five short stackers. So, reading these books on other games helps, even if you don't play the other games that often.

The other purchases were cookery and a raft of Auster and Evelyn Waugh. Since I'm making v slow progress reading Neal Stephenson, I have no idea when I will get round to these. But they are on the "read before I die" list, so I might as well buy them now as later.


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