Monday, June 29, 2009

You Make The Call! (Or Fold)

Played an interesting hand of poker I thought I'd relay to everyone.

Post-tourney cash game, .50/$1 blinds. I start the hand with somewhere around $55-60. Chris has a little more than me in front of him, but he's stuck on the night. Al has maybe around $30 in front of him.

I'm the big blind. Al raises to $3 from Under the Gun (player to the left of the big blind). Action folds around to Chris, in the small blind, who calls. I look down at 7h-Th (7 hearts - 10 hearts). Calling is a little loose, but it's getting late and in the later hours we all have a little more gamble in us, Al, Chris and myself included. So I make the call. There is now $9 in the pot.

Flop comes Tc-Ts-2c. Jackpot. Chris checks. I check, expecting Al, the pre-flop raiser, will continuation bet. He doesn't.

This is where it gets interesting. Turn is a Qs, putting 2 flush draws on board. Chris bets $2. I pause for a second, and make it $7. Al thinks for a while, and just calls. Chris then raises to $14. Now there is $39 in the pot, and with the call from Al and re-raise from Chris I have to consider that I don't have the best hand.

I have three options here, fold, call or raise. With 2 flush draws on board, having to only call $7 into a pot of $39, and a very strong hand, folding isn't really an option. I glance over at Al and I can see he's holding the rest of his chips (maybe $20) in between his thumb and index finger. He's thinking of pushing. If I shove, I'll be raising a pot of $46 about $45, giving about 2-1 odds to Chris and about 3-1 to Al (as he only has $20 to call with). It's probably a play that would chase Chris and MAYBE Al off a flush draw.

Instead, I elect to just call the $7 to see what Al does, and if he pushes, to see what Chris does after that. If he pushes and Chris calls, I'll have a tough decision. Al makes a tough fold (based on his cursing under his breath). The pot is now $46.

The river is a red 3. Chris takes a few seconds, looks at his chips, and announces all in. Chris has me covered, so I'd be calling all of my $45 to win $91.

I'll post the end of the hand in the comments section in a couple days. But first, I thought it might be fun to give everyone (or at least just Ryan and Coovo) a chance to say what you'd do. I would like to hear it!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


A couple years ago, I started hearing all the tech podcasters talking about the newest fad, Twitter. Described as "micro-blogging", well you know what Twitter is. A way to syndicate a quick thought or your location to people who are interested stalking you.

Twitter grew, and grew, and with the rise in popularity came numerous outages in the service (I suppose it's hard to afford the infrastructure for ever-increasing volume when the company doesn't really have a way of generating money). But it just got more popular.

The tech podcasters had a good prediction, though. Once a celebrity (Britney was the oft-cited example) figured out how easily they could easily leverage the app as a way to reach their fan base, Twitter would explode.

And it has. Britney was perhaps one of the first, biggest stars to join (although it's believed that it's her PR people actually "tweeting"... probably because of the lack of grammar and spelling mistakes). Ashton Kutcher got in early. It was one of the many Web 2.0 tools employed effectively by the Obama campaign. Shaq started using it to give away tickets before games. Of course, the adoption of Twitter as a marketing platform by celebrities hasn't come without it's flops and moments of humor.

Then a few months ago I saw Jimmy Fallon using Twitter as a way to let fans send questions for his guests on his show. A month later I saw SportsCenter posting athletes' tweets. Pokerroad has teamed with Twitter to provide up to the minute updates during the WSOP. It's no longer a geek buzzword, it's everywhere now.

And there have been numerous rumors of tech giants in talks to buy Twitter - even though Twitter still has no way of making money!

I personally have no problem if people like to use Twitter to stay in touch with friends, follow people of interest, etc. To each his own. I think my attitude towards it kind of falls in line with this Conan bit, though:

But then, just when I feel somewhat justified for believing Twitter is a little silly, it becomes one of the only methods for getting on-the-scene news out to the world from the riots in Iran. The credibility of Twitter-based news can always be questioned, but it may be the best metaphor for the shift in "breaking news" journalism. The average citizen with a camera phone and Twitter now dictate the stories for journalists to run down.

And it's no different at TLATL. Instead of Coovo telling me what to write, me telling Ryan what to write, and Ryan telling Coovo what to write, we will be following the crowd. And what better way to dive right in than to head to Iran, meld in with the crowd, and work as undercover journalists. And you can follow it all on our Twitter feed! Hope to hear from you all soon.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


A friend of TLATL recently went on a float trip. In the morning he put on his shoes (barefoot) and even took a couple steps before he felt something fuzzy and found this guy inside. <<>>