So.. okay. I forgot to get up at 3:00am Eastern Time and order my Apple Watch online. From what I heard, there was a server meltdown anyway and the Apple web server was out for a while. So I woke up at 8am and immediately ordered the Apple Watch online. The online Apple shopping cart system tells me I won’t get the Apple watch till JUNE???? JUNE??? Plus Apple Care and tax, we are talking about paying $480 for a watch and it will take 2 months to ship to my house? In what universe does that sound right? Continue reading
I have had some friends that have some ambiguous feelings about the upcoming Apple Watch. Let’s just say… I am not one of them. I feel that the Apple Watch will be the next step in personal computing in that it brings many of the best features of an iPhone to our wrists and therefore closer (and faster) and more integrated into our daily lives. Some technophobic people may never embrace the wearable computing lifestyle andthat’s okay. It makes those of us who enjoy the benefits of real-life inst-tech that much more efficient and you know…. cooler.
So my slightly techno-phobic friends ask “But what does it do?” Glad you asked…
This weekend the boys of the Thornhill MC (“Bad to the Bone when our wives let us be”) went on a little road trip on our bikes and had a great time. I want ed to make sure we mentioned The Lodge at Telico. In Telico Plains, TN (which is at the end of the Cherohala Skyway and the Tail of the Dragon), if you turn left off the Skyway, go about a mile down on your right, you will see The Lodge at Telico. Continue reading
This weekend, the boys from the Thornhill Motorcycle Club (“Born to Rake Leaves”) rode from Charlotte to Robbinsville, NC then rode the Cherohala Skyway to stay overnight in Telico Plains, TN. Bob, Big, Poppa Danno and Wyngman rode 280+ miles each way for a great weekend excursion. We ate dinner at KramBonz BBQ where our waitress called me “Baby Cakes” and “Love Bug” and Bob: “Sweetie Pie”. We had a drink at a seafood place that didn’t have hush puppies or corn puppies. What’s the point? We only saw one accident on the Skyway. A crotch rocket littered his bike allover (that’s a $500 fine you know).
Special thanks to Herman “Big” Barnes for organizing everything and Danny “Poppa Danno” Barbour for the idea of staying in Telico vs Robbinsville. The Lodge at Telico had much mroe personality and style and the ride was so much better that way. Continue reading
Okay, we have given you the basic rules of Texas Hold’em. We have discussed some of the etiquette so you won’t embarrass yourself going to a casino for the first time. It can be intimidating. Now let’s get to the good stuff. How to improve your game.
There are 3 Levels of Play when it comes to Texas Hold’em:
- Level 1: Playing your own cards – determining whether you have good starting cards, if your hand is good once the flop hits, etc.
- Level 2: Playing the other guys cards – guessing, by his actions and betting, what he might have in his hand and acting (based on that guess) to get him to react the way he should if he really has that in his hand. You think he has JJ’s in his hand, so how do you play that so you win?
- Bet in the proper manner.
- The Betting Line on the Table – There is sometimes a line that circles the table in front of each player. At some casinos, if you cross that line with chips, everything you have in your hand is the bet. Some players take a whole stack and just “cut out” a few chips across the line. They could be doing this to get a read on their opponents, or to psych them out, or to make sure they get enough chips across in one move (see String Bet). Regardless, know what the casino allows. The best method is to clearly verbally declare how much you are going to call or bet and then stack them on YOUR side the line and then move them out in one motion. No confusion.
- String Bets. Pretty much everywhere you have to place the amount of chips you want to bet or raise with in ONE motion. You can’t put some out and go back and get more in a second motion. This rule stemmed from a time when players would do this to gauge their opponents reaction to the move. Illegal everywhere now. Doing this marks you as inexperienced, drunk, or an idiot. The best method is to clearly verbally declare how much you are going to bet or raise.
- Don’t play out of rack. When they bring you your chips, very likely they will be in a plastic rack. IF the chip runner doesn’t neatly stack them in front of you OUT of the rack. Playing out of the rack slows the game down and marks you as a Dweeb.
- Don’t do ANYTHING out of turn. Don’t bet out of turn. It disrupts the flow of the game. Don’t fold out of turn. It gives someone information about how many opponents he is facing. Info that might not have been available to his other opponents.
- Don’t talk during a hand. Don’t talk about a hand (your cards, speculation on who might have what, etc.) while a hand is still live, even if it is your turn to act. This is similar to collusion or cheating. Don’t talk about a hand at all if you are not in it. Some casinos are okay with some table talk if you playing “heads up” (down to you and one other player) but the best move is to just not talk during a live hand.
- When putting chips out, put them in front of you. Made infamous in the movie Rounders, “splashing the pot” is throwing chips towards the pot in the center of the table. It makes it difficult for the dealer to know how much went in and disrupts the game. Place your chips in front of your seat, across the betting line, or just in front of you. This makes it easy for everyone to see who made what bet and keeps the game running smoothly. Players that fling chips are begging for attention, egotists, or morons. No need for drama. Put you bet out in front of you so everyone knows where everyone else is, It also helps signify where the next action is.
- Don’t “Hit and Run” – This is when a player wins a big hand and then immediately gets up and leaves. Happened to me recently. A guy hit a “2 outer” to win about $700 from me and then immediately packed up and left. That he won the hand didn’t bother me. I want anyone who will call with only two cards in the deck that can save him, to keep right on playing like that. Besides, that’s poker. Luck can run good or bad. But RUDENESS? To getup and run out with out giving me a chance to win it back? It WAS probably a smart move on his part. If he stayed, I WAS going to win my money back. But just because it was smart, doesn’t mean it wasn’t rude and low class. Besides, a poker players reputation is all he really has and now every time I see that guy, I will point him out to everyone at the table. The “etiquette” thing to do is stay for at least an hour to give any one who lost big a chance to win it back. The smart thing to do was for him to run like a scalded dog, because now I (and everyone else at the table) was going to be gunning for him to keep playing like that. He was outgunned and he knew it. Sadly, he was outclassed as well.
- Sit your ass down! Many players (it seems to usually be older players for some strange reason) get up and walk around. Sometimes to skip their blinds every other round. This is rude. It prevents someone who will actually PLAY poker from getting a seat (re: reduces the pot size because their is one less player at the table). Sometimes they go get dinner for an hour and then come back and pick up their chips. That was an hour that a “Fish” could have been sitting in that spot. This hurts the game of poker. Some people are rude and selfish and just give a crap. You (and everyone at the table) came to play poker. Play poker. Don’t wander.
- Tipping – Tip your dealers every time you win IF you think they performed efficiently, quickly , with good customer service. Dealers that joke with the table and deal fast and accurately always get a bigger tip from me. Grouchy old bastards who never talk, smile and deal slow, usually don’t.If you win a BIG pot, you should consider tipping more than a chip or two. I saw a guy tip a great dealer $2 for a $2000 pot. Lame.
- Tipping waitresses. It is pretty customary to give a waitress a $1 chip when they bring a free drink. Even if it’s slow. I know. That’s stupid, But, it was a free drink.
To Be Continued…
See the page… About Paul & Poker
Before we get into how to better play the game, let’s go over some things so you at least don’t embarrass yourself in a casino or a pretty professionally run home game. There’s no right place to start with this, so I will just do a brain dump and see what pops out.
When You First Approach a Casino Poker Room…
The following few items will show you are somewhat knowledgeable of the casino system, that you are polite and courteous, and not a Newb off the street waiting to be fleeced by the pros. Continue reading
Can you learn 25 years of marketing & web development in a single semester? Hell no! But you can benefit from someone who has learned it in 25 years. I am teaching Web Courses in Charlotte, NC (web design & development courses) at Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC) in Charlotte, NC. The problem with these courses is that students are impatient to learn everything to get the most for the educational dollars and the school wants them to get as much as they can, so a diverse number of subjects are jammed into a single semester. Continue reading
If you know the basics, skip this page. This article is for the people that know absolutely nothing about the game. I promise to keep it brief. Mike Sexton of the World Poker Tour (WPT) often says, “Texas Hold’em takes only minutes to learn and a lifetime to master.” He’s not wrong. It is one of the easiest poker games to begin to learn (don’t get me started on Omaha High Low or RAZZ!), but has as many nuances as there are players.
Everyone gets 2 cards face down. The dealer will eventually reveal 5 Community Cards (referred to as The Board) between rounds of betting. Whoever has the best FIVE card hand (of the 5 Community Cards combined with their 2 personal cards, wins. Let’s break it down into steps… Continue reading