Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Inhale, Inhale, You're the Victim

YTD: +$35339.16

I have a confession to make. Several really. The original purpose of this site was not quite as philanthropic as perhaps it seems. As a business man (or a business, man) I had visions of turning this “Internet Property” into a stream of beautiful Benjamins. Incredibly, there was a phrase for this in the ol’ Dot Com Boom, which was “monetize eyeballs”. People got millions on half-assed ideas on how to do this. I kid you not.

So what happened? I realised that I just don’t like poker players. Now this probably comes as no surprise to Constant Readers, in fact “don’t like” smells like a severe understatement. But if you do a poker business, and my thoughts were around a Rakeback/Advice kind of style thing, then, axiomatically, you have to deal with Poker Players. Whinging, moaning, acting like 1.4 wannabes…say my old buddy Wintermute or his equivalent joined up? Emails full of drunken diatribes about strippers and “funny” picture emails galore.

Excuse me, I’ve just brought up a little sick into my mouth.

Of course the chance of a real catch like Wintermute of 2+2 fame was unlikely; but I had to face the fact that he is far from a sole example. Lots of people like Jackass. And now they play poker too.

So that dream died, and I had my boot on its neck.

One of the things that tickled me of late is the powerful argument – I have won more money than you, therefore I am more right than you. This is closely followed by the I have won MUUUCH more than you; therefore I am actually a more evolved form of life, ignorant amoeba boy.

Such arguments always tickle me. Despite the title of this blog – ok it was chosen with a view to marketability, as was the original URL – I am not a full time player. Nor do I have any wish, large Lottery win to one side, of being one. Almost *anyone* who is playing for a living should be making more than me. End of story. Yet still this powerful debating tool still rears its ugly head.

A fine example can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/767vu

I am still not clear whether Rolf S wilfully tried to misread the thread we “debated” in. I still think it was a sad and not unexpected case of turf-guarding. But it has ended up being one of my favourite threads on the now almost useless PLO forum at 2+2.

Come play my game I'll test ya


Milkybarkid said...

A very interesting debate from that link you posted.

If anyone hasn't looked its well worth a read!

Peter B said...

An interesting thread.

Just a couple of linguistic comments.

I don't like Rolf's "marginally wrong or VERY right".

I don't see how you can be "very" right in this kind of Omaha situation. It's nearly always "marginal" unless you have a freeroll or, occasionally, a fish with one out.

But I equally don'tlike your "push all your stack with 1% edges" line.

Surely what you should be thinking about is your bankroll, not your stack?

If your bankroll is 50x your stack, then you certainly do want to push, say, $200 for an EV of $202.

Where it is wrong is if you are not sure that you have a 1% edge. Since real-life poker tends to be "fuzzy", there is an argument for not pushing even 2% of your bankroll (i.e., your whole stack) because your assessment might be wrong. A 1% edge with no margin of error is less attractive than a 1% edge with a three-point margin of error, even for only 2% of your bankroll.


chaos said...


re Omaha Thread: I cut to the chase.

I noticed, (I have no opinion on Rolf S) that someone pointed out that RS will often admit in articles that he plays badly - presumably implying that he does admit he's wrong. There is a huge gulf between admitting a bad play and admitting you're wrong, particularly when this is a conclusion that is arrived at yourself and not pointed out by an adversary. I've certainly found it 'easier' to learn lessons from myself than from others, lessons that I can take credit for so to speak.

This also should allude to the fact that it is one thing to think about poker and another thing to play. The skills required to think well off-line, in a controlled, calm, time-rich, esentially academic environment are very different to those needed to make effective decision-making in the 'heat of battle'.

Sure there is correlation, but you can't conclude that someone is a better thinker/analyst of poker, is effectively right, because he is a better decision-maker 'in-play'

Much talent is still required to identify and execute the right stratregy in a timely way.

Anyway, of course there are countless other reasons why a poorer may win more than a better player: quality of opposition, luck, hands played... It was a very, weak argument.


Big Dave D said...


To me the worst error, which may have been linguistic or not, was the -60 bucks to win 600 (or whatever). Huge misunderstand of what expectation means.

As to the 1% edge comment, I stand by it. Unless you are playing against very good players and want meta game factors, pushing on thin edges in PLO is normally not worth it. Simply because it can start to affect your own meta game factors, i.e. tilt, bankroll worries etc. A lot of 50/50s coupled with some genuine bad luck and "normal" misses could easily take 10+ buyins of your stack in a session.

Having said all this, its also quite rare in PLO to need to play such fine edges. The play is that uniformly bad.



Big Dave D said...


I've never heard or read that about RS. Quite the opposite from the Dutch crew. And of course the other argument about "rightness" is simply that money cannot reflect it, either because of short term luck, "in play" factors like you suggest, or simple, good old fashioned IS (Idiot Savant.)



Big Dave D said...


Come on, chip your $0.02 in. Although I guess you dont meet these spots that often as you always have the nuts nowadays, u luck bucket you :-)


Andy_Ward said...

Quite enjoyed that. I know BluffThis posts on here sometimes, he says right at the end "Why don't you confine your criticism to his [Rolf's] strategy advice rather than side issues? ", well I would say that Rolf was the one who put his dick on the table and said "Right, who's got a ruler ?"

He's the one who decided that a crack at Dave's record was the best way to make his point.


Anonymous said...

Hi Dave and All,

To Andy: yes Rolf did bring personal insinuations into the debate and although my comments were directed at another poster they applied to his as well with that stuff. Dave never resorts to such comments.

To Peter: Dave is correct about pushing small edges. Part of what I am about to say I credit to Ray Zee and you can find such advice in the 2+2 archives. The thing is that in gambling 1% or 2% really isn't that small. RZ said if you don't believe that then walk down the streets of Vegas and look up. And he also said that the best thing is you get to keep making those bets. The only exceptions are if you are "taking a shot" at a higher level and your bankroll does not allow you to really repeatedly take those edges at that level. Then you would want to play tighter.

To Dave: That was a very interesting thread. I stated in my first post that I agreed with your read of the other players' hands but with Rolf's advice about how to play it. I also said that I too have folded aces a couple times online when I had a big stack and the side cards were unsuited trash. It doesn't pay to overplay weak aces, and I have made a lot more money with such weak AA hands by merely calling one or even two raises preflop and flopping a set and slowplaying it on the flop, when if I had repopped it preflop I would have gotten no action because even middle set would have folded.

There are lots of good tricky aggro players on party and stars in the big games who specialize in putting in raises preflop with marginal hands precisely to try to get someone with bad aces to repop and then feel he is pot committed on a bad flop. I simply won't be lured into those stack dumping traps.

Playing aces and against aces is critically important to your yearly results. Rolf has written a couple essays in the past on this. It really is complicated when you bring stack sizes into consideration and can't just use the 'ol tried and true method of limp reraising allin prelfop. I could write a long essay on this (but I'm not going to :) ).


Wintermute said...

BDD, it's funny you mentioned strippers, because this morning I was reading the following website:


As you can see from the photo on the front page, the author of this site is a relatively meaty-thighed asian chick named Kiko Wu. Kiko gives all sorts of practical advice to aspiring strippers about whether to buy fake tits, length of heels to use, intracies of custom garment ordering, etc.

For the most part, this was fun to read in anticipation of all the poon-hounding I'm planning to do in titty bars over Thanksgiving in Vegas... but then I got to the section about "Making Money". Bascially, Kiko describes how to con dudes out of $20 for a lap dance they don't want, by pretending to be their friend, telling them what they want to hear, etc. Example:

"If he says he's not interested ask if he would mind if you just sat down and rested your feet for a minute- you're "not used to these heels". Few men are going to say no to that, and the "not used to these heels" implies that you're a new dancer and invites conversation. If 10 minutes go by and he still doesn't buy a dance don't ask- just say "I'm sorry, I've got to get back to work- it's been nice talking to you okay?" This implies that you didn't consider sitting with him work, a slight bit of flattery that will probably get you a dance later. Think of this approach as "seeding" in that you may not get the dance then, but chances are you will later."

This is exactly what I hate about strip clubs--these vapid whores are simply out to get your money. Of course, this is exactly what I LOVE about strip clubs as well. Because of the tacit understanding that everything they are doing revolves around a financial transaction, I feel perfectly entitled (without any repercussions of conscience) in treating them like the pieces of meat they are. When you think about it my way, $20 is a very reasonable price to pay some whore to sacrifice her dignity for your amusement.

Anyway, you have all my thoughts on strippers this morning. Enjoyed reading your thread with RS; better luck on the tables this coming week.

Wintermute said...

It occurs to me that my previous comment probably makes little sense without context. I stumbled upon that page trying to find a suitable picture of a stripper's ass to photoshop a kangaroo into, so to make an appropriate response in this thread at 2+2 (my post has been deleted, buy you can see it as quoted by the following post):


So you see that the point of my reply here as well as the nature of my response to that thread and others at 2+2 is this:

Online forums and blogs have a dual nature. Primarily, to serve as a means for discussions about poker strategy, reporting results, etc. However, they also are used by many for sheer entertainment value, no content intended. It is my observation that when one shuns the latter, things get a lot less fun, and it can actually detract from the former. In that light, BDD, perhaps many have come to the incorrect conclusion that you are a poker pro not just because of the URL but also because you conduct yourself with such an air of seriousness (among other things) that anyone who doesn't know you well would assume poker could not be simply a hobby for you.

Big Dave D said...


I was actually thinking of your last escapade about strippers when i wrote the post.

Don't make excuses about being here...I know you have me bookmarked!

Re Strippers...personally i liked them more because I felt degraded too. Its debateable where the power lies. Considering im spending a fortune for a glimpse of pink, i tend to think I'm the whore.

I appreciate I come over as an overserious, self inflated twat to you. Fair comment. There are reasons for this. I've been around the Net/Poker thing longer than you. And if one thing is true, the more noise there is, the less signal gets through, until the signal goes.

This blog was a reaction to this, when a UK forum, THM, became all noise.

I appreciate that lots of people want to read blogs full of crazy happenings, anecdotes, personal views and all sorts. Personally, these bore the fuck out of me. I'm just not that interested in Joe Schmo. And if I want politics/views/sex I know better places.

So that's why this blog is "serious" and mostly my forum persona is serious too.

That and I'm an old, boring mf.

Having said all that, we have talked good poker here, certainly better in places than 2+2.



Big Dave D said...


Of course in this case, I didnt say you should pass either. I just said that you shouldnt expect to be overladen with EV. I mostly objected to Rolf talking crap.

As I said then, result-wise, none of the Dutch I got friendly with on Stars burst into tears at the mention of Rolf's name. I think he is good, and probably better than me, fwiw, but not the God of All Gods like he sometimes portrays.

One of the interesting things that got swallowed up on that thread was that meta game factors can have a big impact. If you have a very big stack, as do some fish, then jepordising it in this spot when the most likely outcomes are (a) you chop someone up (b) you lose a bucket of $ can tilt things into the passing direction.



Anonymous said...

Can't we just use the Kelly criterion (or whatever it was called)?

Say if your bankroll is 100 times your stack you take that 1%, but if it's less you pass that edge because taking it would not be optimal for the growth of your roll (i'd guess that would be the faith part in the theory).

Oh and i'd guess we don't have to be nice to our customers anymore because of the internet, so we are much better than those evil strippers conning cash from unsuspecting fishies.


Anonymous said...

Hi Dave,

Well I think Rolf probably does have a somewhat high opinion of himself, but probably no more than most poker players whether winning or losing ones. He does however from his writings seem to be "lucky" in that he says he goes for an hour and never plays a hand and then gets paid off when he does and makes something. Obviously even the loosest players at the table should have him pegged as one who should get zero action.

I think it did kind of get lost in the thread regarding stack sizes in which I agree with not passing given the actual stack sizes in question but that you should indeed do so with a larger stack and junky sidecards.


Aksu said...


If I understood correctly there are two reasons to not push small edges in potlimit game. First is the overall variance and bankroll considerations. Second is table specific bankroll considerations due to max buyin, where it's not worth to risk the big stack becouse the actual value of the stack in that table is more than the $$ amount. And third are psychological metagame reasons. So there are three reasons...

About the passing aces. The crucial point is the accuracy of ones judgment about other players hands. I use the 4way coup as an example.

800 pot
aces vs aces vs 2*? EV=800*.0.2=160
aces vs 3*? EV=800*0.4=320
160*p + 320*(1-p) = 0 => p=0.75

With those "out of my hat"-numbers being 75% right is enough, and Daves estimate on the thread was "95% of the time".

Anyways my point was that too many times I have made a play based on my thinking about what others have, and I forgot to plug the reliability of my judgment into calculations. Usually this happens in PLO when I conclude that two of my foes have aces and I can gamble with my 9764.

Reliability of ones judgment is a tricky thing. Quote from Kahneman and Tversky Judgment under uncertainty: "it is not natural to group events by their judged probability. In the absence of such grouping it is impossible for an individual to discover, for example, that only 50 percent of the predictions to which he has assigned a probabity of .9 or higher actually come true."


chaos said...


Interesting points. Where did you pull that K&T quote from?

I'm trying to recall some work I did a few years ago that seems relevant but I can't. But there is often a real problem in asking a stakeholder for a judgement and then asking for reliability of that judgement. People always over-estimate the reliability of their judgement.

You can introduce penalty systems so say if someone predicts its going to rain to 90% confidence and they are right then they score well, but if they are wrong then they lose heavily. If they say estimate 70 % then they score less well when right but are penalised less than when wrong. In a league table style competition it encouraged people to report accurately & not over estimate their judgement.

My beef with this approach was that it is only useful for repeated trials, or a series of events, because they are less forgiving to those who deviate from their true judgement and gamble for the higher points. But not for single-one-off events, like the cost of a project years from now. People are more inclined to take their chances (especially if it wins them the work). I convicned all but the most important person.

Anyway, not sure there is a punishment system for poker other than the bottom line. But for sure I, most of us, over estimate the value of our judgement.

It is perhaps coming back to me now, I think I felt there was systemic error and observable error. So I suppose there are our errors in our ability to observe/identify something according to our past experiences accurately, and then that our the errors based on our warped past expereinces which may not be realsitic or appropriate here. Or something, can't remember now. My mind's went to mush long ago.


Aksu said...

quote is from book "Judgment under Uncertainty : Heuristics and Biases" Discussion part of first chapter (page 19 in my version).

I made a mistake using word "reliability" for two different meanings.

"...too many times I have made a play based on my thinking about what others have, and I forgot to plug the reliability of my judgment into calculations." - here I really mean the probablity judgment for aces twice vs. other situation, ie. a reliability of "they have aces".

And the quoted comment part uses the more common meaning of reliabity. Your comments for inefficiency to use this are spot on of course.

Sorry for the mess. I will use a bit more time to think about the rest of your comments. I will report if anything sane pops out of my head.


chaos said...

Thanks for that reference sounds interesting. Hopefully I'll take a look.

I'm not sure what I said was clear, but I can't come up with an obviously good example; but I know I once did. It's something like asking someone to estimate the population of a country...

If you asked someone for an estimate of something, there might be uncertainty in their minds over what they are estimating, as well as the uncertainty implicit within the estimate itself (once they know what it is). If that makes sense.

I think there is some of this in poker.

So say we know he has this hand (uncertainy), and we don't know what he is going to do (another uncertainty).

But this wasn't the point I was making. Say we see something and we call it situation X. We've seen lots of situations X's.

Can we estimate the chances of situation X given our sample?

(This is a huge problem imo where emotions are involved)

Is our sample estimating the likelihood of X, an appropriate sample for an estimate of X to occur in this trial/occurrence? (Dave's gripe)

How reliably can we identify X as being X?

This isn't meant to be coherent - I'm struggling - and you thought you had problems with rambling.


ashely said...

poker players are cool + rich + open minded then normal ppl..

Anonymous said...

Hi Dave,

Just a few final comments. I just got called by Ed de Haas saying he read your blog, and followed this interesting (?) discussion. Even though by no means Ed & I are the best of friends, and have had our confrontations / arguments in the past, he actually agreed with me on two important issues:

1) The fact that, as Harrington also says in his books, you should almost NEVER give someone credit for 100% having a hand. And if -as in this case- YOU have two aces, chances that someone else has exactly the other two, this can almost never be 100% - like you seem (or seemed) to say. Because in your calculations you said "we had agreed the other player has aces too". With all due respect, with this as a starting point one can NEVER end up with a proper conclusion on the best way to play a hand - and therefore, at least in my view, you clearly didn't.

2) Ed & I actually talked about what you said, your comments about these other Dutch players you talked to on Stars. Again, Ed agreed entirely with what I said. Actually, he said: "Rolf, just as all the other Dutch players, I don't like your play one bit either, and I hate being with you at the same table. But there is no question about your results - asmuch as I sometimes hate to admit it, you are right." The fact is: Almost any player you will talk to, says: "Well yes his results may be good, BUT... he is an ass / he is merely lucky / he just takes advantages of other people's mistakes / etc. etc.". Keep in mind that if you've been playing long enough with the same crew of people AND you've been doing well, you usually don't win popularity contests. Those who have ever been in that position know what I am talking about. This means that even if the people who DON'T like you one bit, still say: "Well yeah, he IS quite successful, but...", that it should be quite clear what this means. It may not have been clear to you, Dave - but it is my guess that this was mostly because you only wanted to hear what they SAID, and did not want to see what (considering the history I have had with some of these players) their comments actually MEANT.

One final note: It should be clear that my comments about your results may have been a bit below the belt, and I am genuinely sorry for that. Still, if you have a site that has the title "Internet Poker Pro" and have opinions about players, writers and all, then it should be clear that (as happens to me not occasionally, but often) one will get criticized. After all, if you say how much you are right and how much I am wrong, then it may not be unwise to take a short look at simple results just for reference. And given my history with you in the past where you also failed to see the merits of the short-stack approach that I have used sucessfully for years, and frankly just didn't seem to understand what I was saying, I didn't think it was very appropriate for you to comment on things that many players consider my absolute specialty (the play of aces). Even more so because it seemed to me that as before you failed to see the point that I was getting across. That I then made a comment I possibly shouldn't have was a bit unfortunate, and as I said, I actually regret that - but I also think you deserved it for being too confident in what you were saying when your reasoning was (at least to me) clearly wrong. So, as I said in the thread, I hope that with you I have not made (yet another) enemy, but if I have: well then I guess so be it.

Anyway, that's about it from me, Dave. Take care, and best of luck,

Rolf Slotboom

Big Dave D said...


Not enough people read this blog for you to waste time here. This is like the old B movie horror strap line - "The Beast That Won't Die".

Most important point - you havent created an enemy here, fwiw. Whatever you may have said about me is fairly mild and didnt hurt in the slightest. Wintermute says much worse to me all the time.

Having said this, you still seem to be arguing about a point that isn't there.

1. I agree that you cannot put some one 100% on AA - although online it can come pretty close. That wasn't the point. The discussion had "assumed" he had AA - a reasonable assumption - and we had moved on to that. You didnt. I accept that my reply to you about that may have been a bit snappy. You also seemed to miss that I said I would call too.

2. I had no inference or slant on what the Dutch guys said whatsoever. They said, almost to a man (Ed included): (a) you play well (b) you play a strange short-stack style they don't like (c) you won money. None of them said that you were the biggest winner in the game. Which is why I said what I said. You are looking for monsters under the bed that arent there.

3. What history of not liking your short-stack style? I think it works fine for you. I think it is very very hard for other people to make it work. And it *may* cause problems when you finally end up with a big stack. That's all I can recall saying on the issue.

I've already explained the title of the blog.

If you read it more, you would see there are many MANY instances of me being wrong and being told so here. I have no shame.

But the fact remains, like it or not, that you said you were more right than me because you had won more money than me. And you made a complete balls up of the maths thing around EV in the AA case.



Wintermute said...

"Most important point - you havent created an enemy here, fwiw. Whatever you may have said about me is fairly mild and didnt hurt in the slightest. Wintermute says much worse to me all the time."

Dave, is this a bit of an exaggeration or am I forgetting some slew of insults I leveled at you? As far as I can remember, the only directly acerbic remark I've made toward you was in a reply to the discussion you took from 2+2 to here about a hand I posted I cast doubt (to put it mildly) on your analysis and commented that you might be suffering from a frail mindset due to your recent results.

I see now, after all these little jabs here and there, that you were seriously offended by my comment... I guess an apology is in order, then, so here goes: I am sorry.

However, given that Ribbo has banned me from all contact to his blog & forum-thing (after I revealed that he is a losing player at the higher limit PLO8 games despite his frequent bashing of the players at those levels), I'm beginning to wonder whether British are born with thinner skins than the rest of it, or extra-sensitive balls that can't take a little breaking.

In any case, why don't we call a truce, because it's frankfully painful to watch your whimpering.

(How's that for an underhanded apology.)

Big Dave D said...


Chill, baby. It was a jopke.

I just didnt want to ruin the drama with a :)

So here is one, just for you:


You calling me a drab, humourless, clueless, whinging Brit hasn't hurt me at all.

Posting the baby picture on 2+2 did however :) You young kids today play far rougher than we used to.

I learnt long agao that a) I am a bad judge of character and b) never judge said character from the web.

So half hearted, back handed apology unnecessary, and accepted. But never, ever compare me to Ribbo please.

As a sidenote, his complaining of being banned from 2+2 was quite amusing. Especially as he was the "best thing that ever happened to it". Surprisingly, and genuinely, annoying habits to one side, I actually thought that was you.



Beset7 said...

Dave - Entertaining post as usual I can really identify with your attitude toward poker players. I could never stomach running an affiliate business either.

Yeah, the 2+2 debacle with Ribbo was entertaining to say the least. He made a series of posts that I felt were basically backhanded advertising for his commercial advice forum. I deleted the offending posts, locked the thread and warned him that if he did anything like that again I'd ban him. Within hours he digs up a limit omaha8 hand (that, for the record, i'd played almost 18months ago and was solely interested in the river decision) posts it on his blog in order to show how dumb I am. I got a good laugh out of that one. Especially since I have about a dozen hands of his in .5/1 and 1/2 PLO Hi games where he basically calls off his entire stack drawing nearly dead and then berates the other players for sucking out on him.

Welcome to being a moderator!

I decided to smooth things over myself, even after I was told I could/should ban him permanently. I think the message got sent about the commercial forum stuff and thats all I cared about. New players on 2+2 seem to benefit from the information in his PLO8b posts so I was willing to suck it up, even though I never got so much as a back-handed apology for the vicious PMs i received and the blog post.

It's actually been a wonderful distraction from the 50 page law review article i'm writing.

Anyways, keep up the blog. Always entertaining.


Wintermute said...


I should have chosen my words more carefully--the only association I intended to point out between you and Ribbo is that you are both British. Trust me, I know that any more of a comparison would be more insulting than any of my other insults/jabs to date. That guy is a genuine egomaniacal dick, I suspect borne out of severe personality disorder.

Anyhow, I appreciate your compliment, but by far the best PLO8 poster I've seen there--Joshua Mayes--has disappeared, probably for the same reasons you have outgrown that forum. It's dissolving into shit. When recent posts include "why don't I win the low w/ A2 on an 24678 board" and "AAAA is a monster in PLO8 because nobody can make nut low", as well as Ribbo's constant nauseating/hilarious self-promotion, it begins to kill my desire to remain an active member.

Fortunately, through these blogs and email chat, intelligent strategy discussion still takes place, without having to sift through all the noise.

Big Dave D said...


It's funny...he's now winning 300k a year, it seems. Back in the rgp day, he insisted he didnt play for the money and only to educate the dumbos out there. He was notorious then for self aggrandizing posts and "outing" bad players on rgp, when the hilo community of players was waaaay smaller. He also liked to give lectures as to how crap you were when he beat you in a pot.

He also struggled to move up in limits.

Nothing changes much then.



Big Dave D said...


I wasn't just giving you a friendly hand-job. The problem with PLO8b as a game is that ring style, everyone ends up playing nearly the same. Ok, some are more aggro, others overdo the banging the low on all streets to make you fold your low trick a bit too much. But Buklah/Gasss to one side, its all much of a muchness. This is why Ribbo's advice is not often wrong...its not as if its particular complex in the first place.

But you were posting about short handed, which is very, very different. Made a damn change.

On the forum thang, well 2+2 has always been crap. There was a brief halcyon spell when we had GoG and my old buddy Pete F. Acesover too and I think a bit of Bluff, although this may have been b4 his time. It was still as grumpy as it is now, and rarely did we all agree, but at least there were genuine players.

A last admonishment though. I know that you see forums as mostly fun and that's why you do what you do. But the problem then becomes that when you want to discuss something properly, the damn place is full of people who can only do the "fun" thing, because they were attracted to you in the first place. And that's what you are left with. I guess you wouldn't believe me if I told you that rgp was mostly full of useful stuff would you? But it was. Then a guy called Maverick joined and although he was very mild compared to what came later, and sometimes talked good poker, his abrasive, *fun* approach brought on the tidal wave of dross that later crushed the group. Just a thought.



Anonymous said...

Hi Dave,

Well this blog thread has meandered everywhere but that is fine. I would like to comment about Ribbo and also about the 2+2 plo forum in general.

Ribbo is a definite dick. No ifs, ands or buts. And although bset might have him calling off in high with inadequate odds, I suspect he had a better than average draw, and his advice in the plo high forum has always been incredibly weak-tight. And it only takes reading a couple of his blog posts before you are ill with the narcissistic adulation. But you have hit the nail on the head why his advice is good in plo8. That is because 95% of the time, a way larger % than high, the mathematically correct move is what should be done. Rarely is there a true player-dependent move unless against other good players who are capable of folding for fear of being quartered. Ribbo has an excellent grasp of the equity of various situations in plo8, and people would do well to heed his advice in that game. But in plo high where the player dependent aspect assumes a lot of importance especially the higher up the rung of stakes you go, then Ribbo will just have you being at best a breakeven player unless on a table of total passive calling stations. I personally detest hi/lo and don't play it because I don't like bad players with worse draws making me have to fold, and because it is a magnet for weak-tights seeking lower variance and thus makes for bad games.

Regarding the 2+2 plo high forum, I have said before and will say again, that the biggest problem is that the n00bs simply haven't done the required homework reading. They just jump in and then come posting asking for advice. Which means they really aren't capable of understanding that advice a lot of the time. Also, at the lowest stakes, simply being a nut peddler is all that is required, and I am not going to post about those kind of hands.

The other problem that I have also mentioned before, is that the pool of players especially above $100 buyin level isn't that large, and many don't want to post specific hands and reveal their playing identity(ies), including myself because the pool at the biggest tables is very small indeed. I also suspect that since plo is so big in euroland, that some players whose first language isn't english, feel awkward about posting.

Nevertheless, I will continue to try to help those who seem willing to benefit, and like you said about the recent QQrag hand, some threads that looked boring occasionally blow up into something interesting.


Big Dave D said...

Hi Bluff

Usual common sense stuff...some points to pick up on:

"you are ill with the narcissistic adulation."

Made me laugh and very true. I used to joke that he never posted a hand where he lost and played badly. This has been true for, I guess, the best part of a decade.

"Ribbo has an excellent grasp of the equity of various situations in plo8."

I think this is an overstatement. The situations in PLO8b are just nearly all comparatively simple, compared to PLO. Its far from rocket science.

And I wouldnt say that player reads necessarily outweigh a mathametical approach at bigger games of PLO, just that they have significant impact. (Yes I know u didnt say that either, Im just laboring the point :) Whereas at plo8b you dont have to think about the players at all, most of the time.



Beset7 said...

Good points Bluff. Thanks for responding to all the small stakes posts lately I've enjoyed reading them.

Derek & David said...

New poker forum!


chaos said...


If you're still out there... I found a K&T example (prlly from you book reference) which I think does is or is close to drawing out the different uncertainties I was trying to highlight.

Readers of four pages from a novel were asked to estimate the number of 7-letter words ending in 'ing'; another group of readers were asked to estimate the number of 7 letter words whose 6 th letter is 'n'. Clearly, the former is a subset of the latter.

The average estimate for the 'ing' words was around 13, for the ___n_ it was 4.5.

This isn't the best example because I believe its trying to draw out other issues (eg how our estimates change when we break this down, the importance of visualisation or something). But I think it does show that, in the latter case, they didn't, at some level, *know* what they were measuring and this created a specific type of uncertainty; whereas in the former they knew what they were estimating, they was just uncertainty implicit in their estimate.


Aksu said...

Got it Chaos, thanks.

There are beutiful examples how our mind deceives us in the latter (__n_) case when extra information is added. Even if the information is not related to the actual problem at all, we still tend to think that more info leads to better estimates.

heh, we have wandered quite far from the pokertable in this thread. Far and wide.


GimmeDaWatch said...

Lighten up Dave. Jackasses are not specific to the poker arena, as of course as they always make the most noise they usually seem more abundant than they actually are.
Cops, lawyers, doctors, I dont like 'em, but then I probably just
focus on the worst of the lot. And I dont think poker players are, generally speaking, as bad as any of the preceding.