Sunday, November 09, 2008

Gambling fool

I like to think that I don't have much gamble in me. After last December's Vegas trip, I was poised to write about making some way-out-of-my-comfort-zone bets on the Browns-Jets game, including doubling the action at halftime, but others beat me to the punch with similar and no doubt, better written stories about their Browns-Jets betting experiences. (Cliff Notes: I couldn't watch the wackiness at end of the game and instead wandered aimlessly around downtown like a half-dazed desert rat. The action made me nauseous. I felt no joy cashing my winning tickets, only relief.)

Which is a segue into an interesting hand Saturday night at Dave W's in a typically loooooose $1/1 NLHE game. My original $80 stack fluctuated over the course of several hours, up $50 and then down around $20. That's when I reloaded for another $40, caught a few hands and ran it back into positive territory.

Seven-handed, I was dealt As-Ks one off the button. An EP player raised to $6 and got four callers to the flop of 3s-5s-Jx. The SB checked, Theo in the BB raised $33 all-in, followed by two folds and a quick call from your Hero, who couldn't wait to get it heads-up with Theo knowing with unbending certainty he also was on a flush draw. (You have to know Theo.) That's when the BB screwed everything up. He check-raised all-in, putting $124 on top.

I had him covered, although not by much. I tanked. What's he have? A set? A big pair? I had played with this guy long enough to know that two pair was out of the question on that flop. Same with a drawing hand. Fuck. It's a set or a big pair. Intuition said big pair. And freakin' Theo has some of my outs. What's a donkey to do?

My brain, addled by old age, bad living and the season's first pressing of Great Lakes Brewery Christmas Ale (wicked good), ciphered that my pot odds were roughly 2-1 ... maybe. That's when the little voices in my head began their own independent discussion:

"You can gamble and either have a pretty good night or a somewhat shitty one at the tables."


(Neither one of those inner voices are very articulate. Consider the source.)

So I gambled. BB flipped over queens. Theo a couple of spades. The turn brought the ace of diamonds and the river the ace of clubs. Ship it.

Maybe there's a little more gamble in me than I thought. Or maybe I had too many Christmas Ales.


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