Ventured over to South Point on Monday night for some stress-free polka. The have a small room, just twelve tables, no cage – all the chips/cash are kept behind the podium. A large portion of the players know each other, they just happen to live close to the casino and would rather play there than on the strip. Kinda like a home game with better security.

You may recognize the name because High Stakes Poker has been filmed in a private area upstairs at this establishment. The place just-so-happens to be two blocks from the condo I’m staying in, so it’s a good spot to have fun without dropping money, and accidentally making some in the process. Played $1/$2 NL and made a couple of dollars while throwing back Red Bull and Vodka on-the-rocks and shots of Washington Apple. Sure beats going to a bar and coming off $50-$100 or playing “real good” at $5/$10 NL and shipping a few $K.

I went back on Tuesday and scored another small victory. Gonna go back again in a few hours. Why no Rio ? I’m heading back to PA this weekend for my cousin’s wedding, I’d like my sanity (and money) intact for the trip. My last venture over there was (almost) encouraging and profitable, and at the same time almost devastating. Sat with $800 at $5/$10 NL, slowly built up to $1750ish.

Then, I got AA in the small blind.

Tilt. Tilt. Tilt.

I “only” lost about $315 w/ the AA, in that hand – but the post-traumatic-tilt-disorder caused me to dwindle down to $250 in front before regaining control. Buckled-down, ground it out, and built my stack back up to $1,680 or so.

New player sat down, chips were flying, we got it all-in on a 4d5h7d flop, my Ad3d is no good for $1,900 pot. I’ve got $650 in front and I’m UTG the next hand. I muck, tell everyone that if I can’t win with double-gutted straight draw, flush draw, live ace, and a little fold-equity, what am I waiting for? Bounced -$150. Change that river and who knows, maybe I end up +$2K, maybe I ship it all, maybe I cure cancer…

That last one was a bit of a stretch…

Earlier in that session I sat next to Peter DeBest [who?], a player who has already cashed twice in this year’s series. He had very recently busted out of the $2,500 NLHE event (the same one I played) in 21st place, cashed for just over $17K. He was pissed. So close, yet so far.

Does he sit down and throw a party, tilt off the entire buy-in? No. He’s not a stranger to playing the game. Generally a $10/$20 NL (and higher) player, he just sat down as a bit of an exercise in stress-free poker. He bought in for $300 and played lock-box tight, for the most part. The banter was more than enjoyable, and he coined a new catchphrase which I hope spreads like wildfire, “Boy, you run good, Kid,” equivocal to the east-coast saying, “you sooooo rucky, how you get so rucky?”