peterbirks: (Default)
Well, I still need to do the ironing, I think that it might be an idea to have a nap, I want to watch the cricket, some shelves need painting and I've got four articles to write plus about 5,000 words of the "big project". On top of that, I definitely chose the wrong day to go to the cricket (or, rather, the insurance company chose the wrong day to invite me). Not only would I have seen 8 wickets fall in a morning and a bit, but I would also have been in the spot where they had the Channel 4 Roundtable luncheon, which would have allowed me to ask Richie some really tough questions, like "how many fingers am I holding up"?

Today's Richie's classic wasn't exactly wrong, but it was something along the lines of an accountant's explanation. accurate, but uninforming. "It's virtually a one-innings match", he said, as the England operners came out to bat. Hmm, well, with England having a first-innings lead of six, and there being five sessions to go, one could hardly call this sparkling insight.

I've laid the draw at 1.6 down to 1.5, and half-an-hour ago backed England to win 1t 16/1 -- a price I consider farcical. I think that if we get another three sessions, we could well have a result on this pitch, and if England get a lead of around 150, they will know that bowling for a draw won't be an option. So they will have to go for the win. As scenarios go, I think that's a reasonable 6% shot.


Managed to pick up $60 in an hour on Stars this morning in a very odd mini-session. Got nothing for an hour, was $50 down, and then got KK, KK, QQ and 99 in the space of two rounds. All bar the QQ won. Good.

Then after going out on the bubble in the Betfair tourney (watching the cricket in the front room), I twitched onto the PLO.

The Betfair bubble elimination in sixth was a standard one. Several players had survived 50-50s and the chips were very close considering the levels of the blinds. By losing one hand that did not go beyond the flop I went from 10,000 chips (first) to 6,000 chips (fifth). After no cards for six hands, I was down to 4,200 and picked up AJo in the big blind. Button raises 800 to 1,600 (antes of 100 as well) and I flat call, intending to put in the rest of my money on any flop. Board comes A94 rainbow. I go all-in. He calls, I think. Goodie, and he promptly shows Ace-Nine. And even then I had a flush draw on the river, but missed. Bollox.


All made up for in the PLO, where I seemed to get AA remarkably often. The Ultimate Hand Histories are incredibly irritating, in that they disappear if you close the game window. Therefore I lost the most entertaining. I was already $70 up after ritually destroying the poor small-stack guy on my left (he was on his fourth rebuy by the time this happened.

I pick up Ad 9d Ac 7h in MP3 with $120 in front of me. There is a poster behind me. Folded to the player on my right, who has $37. He limps for 50c. I raise $2.25. Poster folds, and SB (with only $12 in front of him) wakes up with a raise to $7. Player on my right calls. This allows me to reraise $29, which I promptly do. SB calls automatically for his last five bucks and the original limper is in a bit of a pickle. He humms and hahhs and folds, so I get $24 returned. I'm not quite sure if I want him to call or fold here. I do know that he could have virtually anything.

Small stack all in shows Kh 8h Ks 8s and hits his heart flush to win. I checked on pokercalc and I'm 65% on this pre-flop, so I'm very happy with my EV as the hand went (the pot is $32. I expect $21 of it and I have put in $12, giving me an EV of $9).

But do I get a better EV if opponent on my right calls? Now, if we are ALL fully stacked up, my percentage drops to 45%, while the KK88 double-suited stays at 33% and the "random" hand is 22%. So the pot would be $93 and I would have an expected return of $41.50, or plus $10.50. But one of the players is all-in, creating a two-pot situation.

For pot one (the main pot, $39 in size) I have put in $12 and I expect $17.50 of it, giving me an EV of $5.50. For pot two (side pot, $60 in size) , I am about 70% and I have an expected return of $42, or plus $12. This gives me an EV of $17.50 on the hand. The pair of Aces benefits markedly from being effectively heads up once and multi-player-potted once. Of course, this is obvious and we all knew it anyway, but it's nice to see the maths confirming it occasionally.

Ended session $42 in profit, marking a nice couple of days at PLO, which is now my best hourly rate for the year, even at these stakes (or, perhaps, because it's at these stakes).
peterbirks: (Default)
Rousting myself to unheard-of levels of efficiency, I went to bed at 8.30pm last night (because I was tired) and woke, inevitably, at four in the morning. So I got up, put the whites in the washing machine, and wrote the newsletter (whilst playing some 5-10 on the other computer), which I sent out at 8.30am. Day's work done, and $60 up as well.

How to celebrate such an achievement, I asked myself? Hell, Most people in the poker world weren't even out of bed yet.

So I started giving the kitchen a proper clean. Yes, we certainly know how to live at Lewisham Towers.

Two hours later, I had finished one side, yes, one side, of the kitchen. I now have the most lopsidely-clean kitchen in Christendom. On the hob side, the cupboards are sorted and spotless, inside and out. The hob and oven gleam like a sergeant-major's boots.

On the other side, the fridge looks like several species of animal have gone extinct inside it, while the freezer has the detritus of several families of vegetable lingering at the base. I'll get round to it, eventually. I really will.


The cricket went well. I've twice traded in and out, increasing my certain profit each time. The draw is currently my smallest winner (£2.10! Wow!) But a win for either England or Australia and I am doing well.

Richie Benaud's commentary reaches new lows. Hell, he was senile-going-on-Alzheimer's in 1994, but now he's going blind as well. Can I have been the only person who saw the Ponting wicket and said straight away that he got a nick before the ball hit his pads? Meanwhile, we get an hour's worth of slow-motion replays, and after seeing these Benaud said that the ball hit the pad and then the bat.

The view on the first ball of the day, given not out when there was clearly a nick before the ball went through to the keeper, was further obfuscated by Simon Hughes when he said that the "fat" noise shown on the "snickometer" was not the same as the "thin" noise caused when the bat nicks the ball, so that the noise was that of the batsman's bat hitting the ground, not of the bat hitting the ball. What should have been blindingly obvious was that this "fat" noise was of such a shape that the "thin" noise of the nick could have been subsumed within it. Jeez, all this technology, and people stop using their eyes.


I reckon that, not counting the FPP freerolls, I have gone something like 18 tournaments without cashing. That in itself is a factor in the poor finances this month. Add to that the fact that I was convinced that I wasn't really doing anything wrong in limit -- that I had just been plain unlucky for eight weeks (I had been treading water since June 30), and it was a bloody good feeling when this afternoon it all clicked and for a couple of hours I could do no wrong. 13 pairs in 163 hands, and 11 of them won. That's all you need, and the profit kicked in accordingly. I shall stick to my promise and not mention any actual numbers less than five figures (or even four figures :-)). But, I tell you, it was a bloody nice sensation after weeks and weeks of feeling that you are swimming upstream.
peterbirks: (Default)
One of the advantages of scouring the news in the early morning as part of your job is that you see snippets that might be of value. The news that McGrath might miss the fourth test after sustaining an injury was enough to make me check out the price on England. It doesn't look to me as if this has filtered through to the 4.1 available, so I had a small interest, with the intention, of course, of trading it back before the game starts. Be interesting to see how important McGrath is rated, given his ineffectiveness in the previous test.


This morning London seemed to set a record for degeneracy. It used to be that my walk from Charing Cross to work at 6.40 was a peacful journey. No Longer. Today we had two screaming drunks on the platform as I arrived, plus another comatose drunk being loaded onto the train by his friends. Then there were three or four nutter drunks outside the 24-hour Chinese restaurant on Wardour Street ("established 1997", it says, proudly, in neon), and then the final coup de gras, a scamster just north of Oxford Street. Conversation went like this.

"Excuse me"
"Excuse me".
I turn to listen to the 25-year-old or so Asian guy.
"It's okay, I'm not going to ask for anything" (At this point I know that this is a scam. The rest is just entertainment).
"I've got money" (waves five pound note). "But, the thing is. I was getting really worried. You're the sixth guy I've asked and most of them have ignored me, and ...."
"Look, what you are doing is trying to quickly establish a relationship. You have one second. Why are you talking to me?"
"Well, I've locked myself out of my car, and ..."
"No problem. That happened to me. We'll go to the police station and they have keys to help you out".
"I've already tried that."
"So how am I meant to help you when the police won't?"
Scamster gives up, walks across street in search of another mark.
"It's a scam, mate, Ignore him."

Just one final strike from Pete, there.

Fortunately I made the last 200 yards to work without seeing one drunk, con artist, drug addict or psychopath. Quite an achievement, really.

August 2017

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