Playas In the Mist

Aces Players Club Turbo (5,000 chips)

My memory is so very fickle. People all around me recount stories of hands they’ve played earlier in the day or a year ago and I can barely remember which two cards are under my protector. Every round of betting I have to check what I’ve got: “What ranks? What suits?” Sometimes people razz me with: “What? Did you forget what you have?” Truth be told, that’s not unlikely. Even if I know I have AA or AK, I might not remember what suites they are. Maybe I’m easier to read because I look at my cards so many times. Then again, if I don’t remember what they are, that might not be a very accurate read.

Either way, it makes putting together detailed accounts of my live tournament games rather difficult for me, particularly if I wait a day or two and if I play two or three similar events in close succession. No hand history file to fall back on, no record in Poker Tracker.

Anyway, this game was a night game. I know that sometime before the first table break, a player on the second table vomited (I was on table three) mostly into a garbage pail. The initial scuttlebutt was that he’d taken a particularly bad beat, later I heard that he’d either had a couple of drinks before playing or gotten some bad food. All I know is that there was a general consensus among the players who were headed to table two when tables were consolidated shortly afterward that they did not want to be sitting in or near that seat. One of the players at our table actually missed a big blind hand because he had stepped away from the stink.

I made it through the first break but not as long as the second.

Aces Players Club (5,000 chips)

Another second-hour bust-out. This one was notable because one of the players on the far end of the table was someone I’d seen in previous tournaments and who was acknowledged by others around me as pretty good. I’d sat next to him before and been my usual pleasant self, but his demeanor to me had always been kind of bluff. Not that I thought he was friendlier to anyone else.

I’d heard from someone else previously that he was good enough to have drawn the attention of someone who’d staked him to play in Vegas, so I asked him if he had been playing down there recently and just got shut down with what seemed like an annoyed response. A simple “no” would have sufficed.

We were involved in a couple of big hands. I pulled a suited ace of clubs and four-bet him on the flop when two more clubs showed up. He was sitting on a slightly larger stack than mine and really pushed hard on the non-club turn, and I folded, then he showed a king-high garbage and and made a comment about not letting flush draws shove him around.

A bit later, I got AA in late position. The big blind was something like 200 and there were five or six limping to the flop, including myself. The flop had another A on it, as well as a 7. Action came around to me and I bet something like 600, then Mr. Stoneface doubled that to 1,200. Everyone else ditched and I called. I don’t remember what the turn or river cards were but the bets escalated until I went all-in and he called, showing pocket sevens. People were flabbergasted that I’d slow-walked the aces through the pre-flop betting. Stoneface pronounced that he knew I had a good hand, he could see it in my eyes when I looked at him, and I said out loud that he was a good enough player to know that I was always playing with good hands, but I left unsaid the fact that he obviously didn’t know how good a hand I had. He was nearly felted at that point and had to re-buy shortly thereafter. But he was still in the tournament when I was busted in 13th place.