Saturday, August 25, 2007

Meme: 20 Tracks During the 28K

The deal: Take your entire catalog and put it on shuffle. Report on the first line or two from each of the first twenty tracks.

For me, this is the Rhapsody account with most of my CDs loaded into it, as well as hundreds of other albums streaming. I'd say a conservative estimate would put this at 30 days of music. I'll just give the many many instrumental tracks a bye, given that this is all about the verbals. Let's see what comes up, and let's hope I have a big stack by the time this experiment is done.

1. She's a rich girl, she don't try to hide it, got diamonds on the soles of her shoes. He's a poor boy, empty as a pocket, empty as a pocket with nothing to lose.

Commentary: Wow, right out the gate a great track from one of the 80s outstanding albums. Ladysmith Black Mambazo in the house with Paul Simon, the man with such an earnest warble and such goofy lyrics, that there's no explanation for why it all works for him. He should come off as a block of solid Velveeta instead of one of the decade's top songwriters.

2. Can't you hear the nightbirds cryin', can't you hear the lonesome dove? Say, won't you come back, darlin', to the only one you love?

Commentary: I've never heard this track (from David Grisman) before. Some nice mandolin-pickin' bluegrass. Nothing horribly special, but it gets the job done.

3. "Ready to set this bitch off?"


Commentary: Some silly interstical playing on the great Speakerboxxx/The Love Below album. Big Boi decided to put his four (?)-year-old behind the mic for laughs. Ho ho ho. Let's hope this isn't the next edition of Li'l Bow Wow. Because then I'll have to jam sporks into my eyes.

[Instrumental Interlude: John Coltrane jams pure liquid gold. Awesome.]

4. "Women, they good for noth--"

"Wait wait wait. Trip this. We're going to dedicate this to all the pretty young ladies."

Commentary: Ice Cube from waaaaaaay back in the day, battling Yo Yo for gender superiority. AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted is a long way from Are We There Yet? Ach. Where are the Ice Cubes of yesteryear?

5. I can tell there's something you don't want to tell me.

Commentary: Well, there's certainly something I don't want to tell you. That's the Dixie Chicks on my tracklist. What can I say? I think they're ai'it, modern country pop though they be. Curse you, random shuffle, for exposing guilty pleasures! Curse you!!!!

6. I got to roast William Shatner on Comedy Central a few months ago, which [applause] I appreciate that, but now I'm about to tell you a story which you will not applaud, because it's pathetic. . .

Commentary: Patton Oswalt destroys. One of the funniest men in America right now. Get him in a room with David Cross and Louis CK and we'll all collectively fly into the sun, comedically speaking.

[Instrumental Interlude: DJ Spooky unwinds my mind and rethreads my head.]

7. Can't be bothered with the natural fact I'm her slave and I can't look back.

Commentary: I'm a new fan of moe., one of the heirs apparent to the Phish jamband throne. You should be too, if you like 30-minute tracks. Try their Warts & All sets. Delicious!

[Instrumental Interlude: Bela Fleck performs a laid back little diddly.]

8. Today could be a lot of fun, and precious one, I'd feel good just to walk with you.

Commentary: Um . . . I don't think the Beach Boys appeal is really in the lyrics. Seriously, though, this is from Smiley Smile/Wild Honey, the excellent album that came out after the seminal Pet Sounds. These were the Beach Boys jams that influenced the Beatles. So, you know, you might think about checking them out.

[Instrumental Interlude: Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey is challenging, but worth it.]

9. Highway 51 runs right by my baby's door. Highway 51 runs right by my baby's door. Mrrzzzle mrrzle mrrzlle maazzlle, mrrmble mrrmble mrrmble trwwwrrrrr!

Commentary: Bob Dylan, man.

10. Freeeeeeezin', rests his head on a pillow made of concrete, again. Oh, Feeeeeeeelin' maybe he'll see a little better set of days, ooh yeah.

Commentary: Eddie Vedder and Layne Stayley pretty much invented that "oooh yeah" rawk thing they did. But when that Nickleback dink does it, it just offends. My point is, throw batteries at the band if you happen to find yourself at a Nickelback concert. Then try to explain what you were doing there.

11. Dooo doo doo, oh Lawd. I, I'm going to be. So good to you. What's good to you. Is good to me.

Commentary: If you haven't gotten into Parliament/Funkadelic yet, you're dead to me right now. Come on Sir Nose, it's time to Aquaboogie.

[Instrumental Interlude: What's this??? Another David Grisman tune? When do I ever listen to this guy? How many DG tracks do I have? Let's see . . . hmm, 24 out of thousands. Looks like Grisman's hit his one-outer tonight.]

12. Can I make it funky?

Commentary: Since you are James Freaking Brown, the Godfather of Soul, the answer is yes. You can make it funky. With a little ho-cakes on the side. James had one of the highest T/I (talent/insanity) indexes we've ever seen. We're still dealing with what he did for the bowl haircut.

13. Someone in the club tonight has stolen my ideas.

Commentary: They Might Be Giants is severely under-rated. Do you know how much music they are responsible for? It's not all Particle Man and Istanbul, people.

14. I'll never forget you, I'll never forget you, I'll never forget you.

Commentary: Ella Fitzgerald, the finest voice ever recorded. I don't even know if I like this song, but I could listen to Ella Fitz sing a John Grisham book.

15. Sing a song of sixpence, pocket full of rye. Hush-a bye my baby, no need to be crying. You can burn the midnight oil with me as long as you will stare out at the moon upon the windowsill, and dream...

Commentary: Tom Waits. This isn't a song of his I'm familiar with, but that guy rocks the house. Or, to be more accurate, he freaks the house out. But he's still a favorite, and he's at my dream poker table. With a knife.

16. I wanna be around to pick up the pieces when somebody breaks your heart.

Commentary: I've got a lot more James Brown than David Grisman loaded up (shock), but still it's weird to have a couple double artists in just 20 songs. But James is always welcome.

17. Woman hold her head and cry, cause her son had been shot down in the street and die, from a stray bullet. Woman hold her head and cry, explaining to her was a passerby, who saw the woman cry.

Commentary: One of the finest vintage Bob Marley tracks, Johnny Was. The hits just keep coming at WGOAT. Way to go, randomizer, you haven't embarrassed me since the Dixie Chicks . . .

18. Don't let them fool ya, or even try to school ya.

Commentary: . . . but you do seem to enjoy doubling up on artists. Then again, to be fair, I do have about 467,800 Marley tracks.

19. Hey now baby, get into my big black car. Hey now baby, get into my big black car. I want to just show you what my politics are.

Commentary: Cream song. I'm about out of commentary. Um . . .I like Cream. Clapton before he took up residence in the elevators and shopping malls of the world = crazy delicious.

20. Hotel keys are all I'm holding, it's room number 225. Hotel keys are all I'm holding, I'm here but barely alive.

Commentary: Yonder Mountain String Band. They're good. They play music. I like it. I'm not even making an attempt at commenting anymore. However, I'm in 35th place out of 152 and we're past the money bubble. Wish me well.

Bonus: This one is the very next track, number 21. It's from William S. Burroughs, and it's too good to leave out.

The lavertory has been locked for three hours; I think they're using it for an operating room.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Table Profiles 008: Rover Confident

General Profile: Rover Confident is one happy dog. He has just made a nice juicy MTT score, and he's flush with success and new money. As a result, he's forgotten something very very very very very very important.

The money's still real. He simply doesn't feel it any more. He may as well be playing with Milkbones. He's playing well above his level. He's buying in for too much. He's pretty sure that his five outs are just fine. And if they aren't, who cares? His roll is HUGE! It'll never run out!

Natural Habitat: Rover Confident can invariably be found in a much rougher neighborhood than is good for him, his still-living carcass being picked apart by birds of prey.

Strengths: He played a really solid, strategically aggressive game . . . last week.

Weaknesses: Right now, Rover's weaknesses are like unto the stars in the Milky Way, but his main ones are a completely misplaced sense of invulnerability and the inability to feel pain.

Motto: Oh well, what the hell, I had outs!

Favorite Hand: Rover doesn't play hands, see? He can't even be bothered to look at something like his hand. The hand is irrelevant, man. Rover plays position.

In the iPod: Rover's not listening to music. But inside his head, his brain is making this noise.

Hobbies: Playing poker, thinking about poker, making meticulous graphs showing his new winnings. Wondering when this downturn will turn around, not that he's worried, ah hahahahaha . . .

Care & Feeding: If you are a friend of Rover, you must stage an intervention right now. Find him wherever he is playing, and try to Make. Him. Stop. Before he piddles his whole roll away like a pre-housebroken puppy.

There are a variety of ways to do this. One is the direct approach.


Rover Confident: ????
Hero [Observer]: Seriously, stop donking, do you realize how much you've just dropped?
Rover Confident: Dear God, what am I doing?

You might try to just generally embarrass him, which will require following him around.


Hero [Observer]: Hey, Rover, has that groin rash cleared up on you?
Rover Confident: WHAT??
Hero [Observer]: Yeah, I hope you're OK, but I'm still itching something fierce.
Rover Confident stands up.
Hero [Observer]: Don't be shy, Rover!

You might consider trying to scare him. If you are going to do this, I would recommend enlisting a friend and perhaps creating a new account name:


Rover Confident: Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!
FBI Spec. Agent [Observer]: Mr. [use Rover's real name here for maximum terror] By my account, you have played approximately 17 hours this week alone.
FBI Spec Agent [Observer]: I'd like to ask you a few questions
Rover Confident has 15 seconds to act
FBI Spec. Agent 5785 [Observer]: Is that all from the same computer?
Rover: Um . . .
IRS_Adjust 5211 [Observer]: Mr. [real name], I'd also like you to answer a few questions about your activities from 2005 onward
Rover Confident stands up
Sen_Frist: [Observer] Hey, where did he go?

Or, you could (you know) sit at the same table as Rover and just play optimally. Depending on how you feel about that. It will be profitable for the next week at least.


Hero wins pot ($892.76).
Hero: I'm RICH beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeyaaaaach!!!!

It's important to stress that no one intervention method is superior to another. Find the method that works best for you, and stick with it.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Good Girl

My wife is suspicious of me.

My three year old daughter, E, is playing a game of Memory. She asks my Beautiful Nurse Wife:

E: What's this game? What's it called? Is it poker?
BNW: Is it POKER?! Where did you hear that?
E: Is it poker?

Sniff. I've never been so proud. Now I have to teach her how to semibluff with 15 outs twice.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Sick Beat

"Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana."

I mentioned in my last post I'd slept through the FTOPS Event #1 money bubble, technologically speaking, that is.

Well, now I've slept through most of the rest of it quite literally.

I'm a lucky goat, having been blessed with beautiful intelligent children, a sexy intelligent and funny nurse wife, a good job, the ability to whistle, and a hardy constitution. No, not the Constitution, though that's under attack from some quarters these days too. No, just my constitution. My ability to not get sick. My gumption. My get-up-and-go. My mojo. Typically I start feeling ill and then pop! I've pushed through it! Thanks, genetics!

But some virus connected solidly with my moleculars on Thursday, giving me the superhuman ability to sleep, complain, sleep, and hack up fiesta-colored loogies with the consistency of roofing tar. Thus, I slept through events I wanted to try to qualify for, and I slept through the qualifiers. Bummer.

But . . .






Freakin' bloggers rule, man. I love that people I "know" (from regularly scheduled reading) have been making a little bit of a ruckus in the Full Tilt signature series. It's only a matter of time before somebody takes one of these down. Yes, it doesn't hurt that Tilt runs these every 8 weeks or so, but still . . . as a group, we're getting a little dangerous. Add in the repeated KOD destruction and LJ's recent pwnership, and you've got some momentum going.

I've made one solid, relatively cheap attempt at the Main Event, and I came blessedly close, losing at the final table to a guy . . . well, let's be kind and say that I haven't witness optimum play as a rule in these satellites. Anyway, I was sent to the showers just short of the prize, but I'll be back again shortly. I know the amount I am prepared to spend to attempt to satellite into the ME, and I'm ready to do battle once again.

Hack, hack.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

The Black Hole

"You know I could rent you out as a decoy for duck hunters?"

Tonight I chatted with Hoy and played some poker. Oh, and I cashed in the FTOPS Event #1. Not a sexy cash. No commas involved, just a few healthy virtual C-Notes for outlasting approximately 3700 other slobbos (and/or Phil Gordon). It's a nice padding to my roll, but not the roll-dwarfing, 'pay off the house and set up the college fund' kind of cash I was going for, either.

But here's the thing. I slept through the bubble. Virtually speaking, that is. Because with a nice above-average stack and a nice image on my table my computer just went away. Bye bye. No internet connection. Reboot. Nada. Cycle the modem. The modem laughs.

So I called them. The recorded voice suggested that they were having higher than expected call volume, and if I was having trouble connecting to the internet, I should consider skipping the phone wait and instead pay a visit their website to troubleshoot.

I'll repeat that.

They told me to get on the Internet. To troubleshoot. The fact that I couldn't get on the Internet.

It's at times like these, my friends, when I am ashamed to be a mammal.

Finally the guy gets on the phone.

"Yes sir we're doing a regularly-scheduled maintenance in your area."

"All right, so how long before I'm back on?"

"Usually this type of maintenance will take until eight in the morning."


"Maybe six."

"OK, and you warned me by . . . how? Exactly how?"

He shifted into robot mode. "I-am-very-sorry-sir-I-do-sympathize-for-the-inconvenience-but . . ."

"It's a little more than an inconvenience."


"You said it was regularly scheduled maintenance. Don't you kind of get warned by your regular schedule?"

"I-am-very-sorry-sir-I-do-sympathize-with . . ."

"OK, thanks."

"Is-there-anything-more-I-can . . ."

I bite back what I'm thinking (No, you've already done so MUCH). This guy has a bad job, and I can only make it worse by staying on the line. He didn't do this.

"No thanks. Good bye."

At this point I've been off for about 20 minutes. I am dejected. I try one last time to get on the server. It works. Talk about your one outers. I'd lost about a third of my chips. My M was around 6. And . . . the bubble had burst. I was in the money. Least and most stressful bubble, ever. I got on, managed to get all my money in ahead by about 88% with AQ vs. AJ but chopped instead when the case Ace fell.

I'll never know what the black hole of service gained me or cost me. Maybe I autofolded Aces that would have been cracked before the bubble. Maybe I lost a chance to quadruple up. Impossible to say. I'm very happy with my play. There's one hand near the end I'd like to have back (a silly C-bet with a steal hand that missed on a board that screamed 'check!').

Meanwhile, Hoy went on a roller coaster that . . . well, I'm sure he'll tell you about it. Batten down the hatches.

Cmitch is still alive and well. I wish him the best. Thanks to bayne and Alan for showing up to cheer my shortstack right before the end.

I don't have time these days to do a blow-by-blow, or a "12 major hands" breakdown. Too bad, so sad. I do so love writing them up. But we'll just have to settle for something like this.

Card dead card dead card dead did he just push his whole stack into my Kings with Ace high? card dead card dead Did he just min. raise to let me chase and hit my flush? Wow, I'm in 19th place out of 2900! I can't lose -- oh, I guess I CAN card dead card dead card dead card dead card dead card dead card dead card dead card dead card dead DESPERATE AQ PUSH RACE YYYEEEEEEEEAH . . . what is this? Reconnect! Reconnect!NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO WHEW!!! Bubble? BUBBLE! W00T!


I hope we've all learned something valuable here today.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Delicious Again, Peter

"Mmmmm, FTOPS Event #1 does go well with the chicken."
-Paul's Boutique

Here are the results of the only online tournament I played this weekend:

Hoo-ah. This $10 rebuy was only a little tighter during the 1/2 hr. rebuy period than Katitude's Friday Donkament is. I didn't help myself by getting AT on the button during the very first hand. I pushed hard against the limpers (which was everybody) and the small blind woke up with Aces.


After that, I doubled up against with top pair against somebody calling with overs who didn't get there, then went back down to original stack with pocket sevens against somebody calling with top pair fives and a Jack. Jack on the turn. YARGLE. Briefly tilted, I proceeded to call my chips off with overs and didn't get there.


With the rebuy period almost over, I played donkey aggressive poker and managed to chip up about 50% before reloading.

Then the wheels fell off. Rough beats I won't get into now since bad beats in a brag post might just cause the streams to cross, which would result in either a) all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light, or b) the Stay Puft Marshmallow man.

Finally, I found myself with a very short stack (M around 5.5) and pocket fours. I pushed and instantly got two customers, one of whom pushed the other out and showed Jacks. Fortunately, I'd already nailed a four on the flop, and I was tripled up. I got moved to a table with jeciimd, who was playing a solid tight game, and quickly got to a chipleady sort of place, capped by a ransacking the number two stack, who had never shifted gears from the re-buy and was stacking off with absolutely any two cards. I caught him with top pair calling with two overs and I had three times the chips as anybody else heading into the Final Table, and top three got a prize.

From there, it was fold, fold, fold and watch the shorties win, win, win. Finally the blinds were too high and I had to try a semi-bluff resteal with KJs. Actually, I thought I was likely ahead, as this guy had been raising to steal about 75% of hands, but he showed me A6 and I was a bit behind in the race. Until the flop brought me a K-high flush draw and the turn made me the flush, that is.

That was about it, pretty much the last hand I played until the bubble burst and we autopushed. I skillfully took the shorter stacks down with Q3o.

There you go. Sorry to jeciimd, who played quite well, but whom I regrettably knocked out right before the final table. I promise you, every time I raised your blinds, I had a good hand. And thanks to Hoy, who is now 2-0 when he suggests to me what satellite to play. Seriously, ask him what to play. That guy will serve up a beatable tournament. The $10 rebuy for Event #1 is softer than last month's bananas.

Hope to see you out there for FTOPS #1. Bloggers represent!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

I Did It!

OK, once again, I am a man of my word. I guaranteed that I would claim victory. and for that reason I am pleased to announce . . .


Ahem. Now, in all seriousness, the BBT was a great series, and a joy to take part in. The freeroll at the end was the icing on the cake. I took a screenshot of the opening hand. Pure bloggy goodness. Feast your eyes, ye donkeys, upon Al's works, and weep!

And here's the final table:

I'm quite pleased. I feel like I made it a long way through a very tough field with just one big suckout (sorry Waffles, TT is gold vs. JJ), hit the final table, made some good plays, and then got too tight and was forced to call Jordan's all in with two live cards. Fifth against that field is gratifying, and though I really think I had a chance to take it down, I'll take my showing with pride. I will also take the money.

Now . . . about the BBT. Let's keep this short.

Thank you once again to Hoy.

Thank you once again to Mookie.

Thank you once again to Don.

Thank you most especially to Al, who by all accounts was the man behind the plan. You guys have created something that brought new life, new blood, and integration to the blogger tournaments. It's a beautiful thing, and in my opinion beauty of the whole overcomes any particular quibbles one might have about the details. Especially if you aren't doing the work. For my part, I hope we see it again one spring day.

The BBT is done. Long live the BBT!

Now here comes the Big Game. Gear up, everybody. I think I feel a guarantee coming on.

We Are Rolling

"Before you can take up the carpet, you have to take up the tax."

That sound you heard yesterday was all of Don's readers rushing to BigStack to check up on themselves and others. I did, too. I spent a merry half hour last night creating a spreadsheet of all the BBT Freeroll qualifiers, and, baby, the numbers just about scalded my fake eyebrows off. I think I'll post them tomorrow, but suffice it to say this:

1) I don't put a huge stock in this database's results. It's only one site, it's only public MTT's, it doesn't have the latest numbers, it doesn't take satellites into consideration, etc., etc., etc. So don't nobody take this too seriously. I don't.

2) Wow, even with Chad's constant pwnage, we're way way way way way stuck as a group in this catagory.

By the way, do you know that the Freeroll is tonight? The Freeroll is tonight. And I'm still putting up most of my BBT points as bounty, given that I have 100%, unequivocably and without even the slightest shadow of doubt guaranteed that I will claim victory in this event.*

Come one, come 56, test your mettle. And hope for no Full Tilt database fubars this time.

*Not a guarantee.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

I Ghey-Rawn-Tee

“Go for it, Darko!”
-Rasheed Wallace

OK, so after I proclaimed myself the winner of the BBT Freeroll, a number of you piled on. "How could you have won?" they asked. "Wasn't it . . . you know, cancelled? How do you figure that you won? ON WHAT BASIS ARE YOU MAKING THAT CLAIM? DO YOU COME FROM THE FUUUUUUUTURE????"

I had my answers, of course.

1. I intended to play the BBT Freeroll until either I busted out or I won. I never busted out. Hence . . . I friggin' win. I stand by my results. Ipso facto. Q.E.D. RSVP.

2. Sure, anybody can go ahead and refute anybody, especially if they use facts and logic. But poker ain't a game of facts and logic, it's a game of boldness and and and, um skill. It takes boldness to claim victory in a cancelled tournament. And skill? How, you might ask does skill factor in? Well you might ask. And I will tell you. Yep. Yessir, I'm going to . . .

3. Look! What on earth can that be behind you???

Then Al Can't Hang has to go and embarrass me with a public proclomation that the BBT Freeroll had been rescheduled. He even got Full Tilt to kick in an additional $650, which really cheeses me off.

Why? Isn't that obvious? I'm now the winner of the lesser BBT Freeroll. Curse you, Al, you son of a tuberous plant, you half-cousin to a platypus, you! Curse yooooooooooooooooooooouuuuuuu!!!!!

Clearly, I need to be bold and skillfull once again. SO . . . in light of the public and rather premature guarantees of other bloggers, I am sealing the deal. Crossing the Rubicon. Believing that it's not butter. Removing the tag from the mattress.

I am making a public guarantee of victory in the BBT Freeroll tomorrow.

That's right. You heard right. No matter the cards, no matter the skill level of my starting table, I am guaranteeing that I will find a way to claim victory in the BBT Freeroll, Take 2 (Electric Boogaloo). I'll even put my money where my mouth is. Anybody who busts me will receive a bounty of 400 BBT points. You can't do better than that.

Perhaps I won't actually win. Anybody can win. But to claim to have won after flaming out in 16th place? That takes a big poker heart, baby.

Just try to stop me.