January 16th, 2010

Winston Wolf

Life is an advenuture

Played for 14.5 hours Friday/Saturday am.  I have never seen a day like it before.  I set all kinds of personal "daily" poker records.  I can honestly say I played the best poker of my life.  I was on my game. As the day went on I got better and the game got better.

In the wee hours, there were players has the table too drunk to speak. There was a player who kept mucking winning hands.  There was a player who didn't know that a flush beat a straight.  There were two players who straddled and bluffed for hours.  I was by far the most solid and experienced player at my the table the whole session. All of theses ingredients add up to a perfect game to be in.

It doesn't get any better than this in poker. There was only one problem.  I was not getting "cards". And when I got good cards, I lost. It was by far the most brutal day of my poker life.

I won't bore you with all details but I lost hand after hand after hand where I was the huge (%) favorite to win. I was dealt pocket QQ, five times. I lost all five hands.  I was dealt pocket AA and  lost to pocket Kings when he flopped a set (KKK). I was dealt pocket KK and lost to pocket AA. I lost on the river after flopping top 2 pair more times than I can count. I never filled up for a full house. I never hit a nut flush draw after getting 2 to the flush on the flop. NOT ONE TIME.

The few hands that held up, won me very small pots compared to the average at the table yesterday.  It was very fitting that my last hand was pocket QQ which lost to KK and I hit the felt.  Damage to my poker bankroll?  10%.  It's not wise to lose more than 5% in a single session.  So that was a mistake. But during a typical session mistakes determine winners and losers 90+% of the time.

I can honestly say that I made the fewest playing mistakes that I ever have made in a session. I usually  make many more than I did yesterday and still win.  The lesson learned here is that sometimes when conditions are perfect and you are well prepared for the task at hand, you still can fail.  I am not going to lose sleep over that which I can't control.

After each session, I go over my mistakes and what could have been done better during the session.  Last night, I never got out of line. I never went on tilt. I am 100% confident that I played my best poker ever. I was a 99% favorite to at least break even.  I have played hundreds of poker sessions over the last ten years. 

I got unlucky last night. But I have been very lucky for 10 years.  It took me ten years to set the record for my worst day ever at the poker table. I am a much better player now than I was even last year. I get better everyday.  I don't control the cards. I don't control how other players play.  I don't control luck.  

I do control myself. I got a good night's sleep and today I will get up off the canvas and look for a similar game at Winstar.  I could lose again today. But I will take my chances because I am a good player. Today could be the best day of my life at the table. Who knows?  The only thing I know for sure, is that today will be another adventure and I am not backing down from the challenge.