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Poker Blog established in 2003 as the first stop for poker news, poker stories, and bad poker advice.

June 30, 2004

Poker at the 19th Hole

by Luckbox

It called itself a cigar bar, but a few cigars in a case and a leather couch hardly make it such. In fact, the place was so small, one cigar probably would have been enough to smoke me out. Thankfully, everyone ignored the "cigar" part of the name.

I was one of the first players to arrive, but that's probably because I didn't know the 8pm start time really meant 9pm. It was my first time there, and I didn't know a soul. I asked for a Bud Light despite the fact that I hate drinking and gambling. I felt self-conscious sitting in a bar alone without a beer in front of me.

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Permalink | Tournament Action

June 28, 2004

That "V" Word Again

by Luckbox

I was planning a post on "variance" following my big session on Saturday. Things weren't going as well until a bit of a personal triumph. Then I log on to see Otis roughing up more Empire Poker opponents. Kinda makes my accomplishment a bit minor in comparison... but here goes...

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Permalink | Tournament Action

Um...I feel...something...

by Otis

When Jim McManus set out for Vegas to cover the WSOP, made the final table, then busted out, he wrote that he felt like he'd taken 5th out of 6th place instead of fifth out of several hundred. I sympathized with him, but never felt any real empathy.

Until morning.

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Permalink | Tournament Action

June 26, 2004

Best... Session... EVER!!

by Luckbox

I left work last night with a very strong urge to get in my car and drive straight to a casino. I'm a compulsive gambler. I've admitted it many times. I also have a certain amount of discipline, and that discipline led me home instead.

I got up this morning, and that urge to drive to the casino was mostly gone. Frankly, my big expenditure for this month happened last weekend for Bradoween, and I didn't want to dip into my bank account again. The urge to gamble wasn't gone, however, and that led me to Planet Poker.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Playing For Money

June 25, 2004

Debating Ben

by Otis

In the middle of downtown Greenville, SC, there's an Irish Pub with a stage near the door. If you get in the door early enough, pound a couple car bombs, flirt with the best bartendress in town at the back bar, and get a good seat, there's a chance you might hear some good music coming from the stage.

A few nights a month, the musicians have an open-mic night. I've never participated for fear of ruining an otherwise good career as a local personality and back porch guitar picker.

Still, a friend of mine went the other night and sat down on stage. He had the crowd going pretty good, when the regular musicians eventually came up and said, in effect, "Okay, that's enough."

The implication was clear.

This is our game. If you wanna play for real, find your own stage.

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Permalink | Poker in the News

June 23, 2004

Hollywood Taking Over

by Luckbox

The last time we saw Ben Affleck playing poker, he was rolling over to Willie Garson (you know, the gay friend on Sex in the City) in the inaugural edition of Celebrity Poker. Not exactly the best way to demonstrate your poker acumen.

Apparently the star of such blockbusters as Gigli and Jersey Girl does better when he plays with his own money. On Sunday, Affleck won the California State Poker Championship. This wasn't just some little Hollywood home game. Affleck won $356,400 and a spot in next year's World Poker Tour Championship.

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Permalink | Poker in the News

June 22, 2004

Bradoween Open--The Winner

by Otis

From time to time here at Up For Poker, we like to open our pages to a guest blogger. We like to publish players of some note or noteriety. Boston J. Reilly is one of those players. He scooped first prize in the Bradoween Open this year. The following is his account of his win.

“Play very tight at the first table and don’t get seated with Otis or CJ.” That was the advice from my friend Jason about how I should approach the Bradoween Open. I needed this good advice too, having played only in a half dozen or so home games, none as serious as this. I knew the game a bit and was comfortable at the table, but I was worried about my chip management skills and betting strategy. Turns out if you can stay alive for the first 7 hours of the tourney, you can gain the skill needed to win it at the final table.

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Permalink | Tournament Action

June 21, 2004

Bradoween Open--The camera doesn't blink

by Otis

Please be sure to check out CJ's write up on the Bradoween Open below the entry and BadBlood's write-up over at his site.

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Permalink | Tournament Action

Luckbox's Bradoween Experience

by Luckbox

It was supposed to be a relatively quick tourney. Just a couple of hours to decide who would wear the crown of Bradoween Open champion.

Seven grueling hours later, we finally had a winner. And it was all worth it!!!

The Open included a Mt. Willis-record field of 33 players. The $660 prize pool was also a Mt. Willis record. The mix of players included those who learned how to play poker in the preceding 24 hours and those who have played for years.

My tournament came down to a pair.

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Permalink | Tournament Action

Bradoween Open Results

by Otis

Apart from taking four hours longer than planned, the Bradoween open was a rocking success. We're hoping for full tourney reports from the winners. Some have already written. Your humble host (that's me) made a play shortly after the first break and got caught. Sadly, I got caught by a guy who thought he had a boat but only had ace-high. Further, sadly, I didn't even have Ace high. It was a bad move on my part, regardless.

Of the 33 entries, here are your money winners:

1) Reilly--Boston, MA--$300
2) Team Scott Smith--Simpsonville, SC--$150
3) David M.--Atlanta, GA--$100
4) CJ--Lafayette, LA--$70
5)John "BadBlood" D.--Greenville, SC--$40

Badblood already has his tourney report online. Check it out. CJ plans to write one up soon and we're asking for one from guest blogger, Reilly. I have some pictures that will go up soon as well.

Congrats to all the winners, and the few that went out just short of the money after playing for seven hours straight.

Permalink | Tournament Action

June 17, 2004

Tales from the Felt: Running Bad

by Staff

Like a switch that's been turned off, my hot streak has ground to a dead halt and I find myself running terrible. One night I was completely crushed, and then last night I was four big bets from getting busted until the game got shorthanded and I toughened up, avoided tilting, and made a nice comeback. But still, it's been mostly ugly.

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Permalink | Bad Beats

June 11, 2004

Time's Running Out!!

by Luckbox

You're invited to join the Up For Poker blogger community. Just send your submission here:
We'll pick the best of the bunch to become regular contributors.

If you already have a blog of your own, you can still enter to become a UFP blogger. In fact, if you have a new poker blog, UFP is the best place to find new regular readers. We've got hundreds of readers every day, and if they see your writing here, they'll be sure to follow you back to your blog.

Time is running out! Get you submission in as soon as possible!

Permalink | Poker Web Sites

June 9, 2004


by Otis

A quick hiatus from the hiatus to wish Iggy's cat, Monty, well. There is nothing greater the unconditional love of a pet. And little hurts worse than not being able to personally fix what's broken. From Scoop the Therapy Mutt and one animal lover to another... peace, friend.

Permalink | Otis' Thoughts

Presto! Four Hands from the Weekend

by Staff

Way back in the pre-blogging days, when us intrepid Internet pioneers searching for poker info were forced to make do with the rec.gambling message boards, one of the most common RGP terms was "Presto," signifying the seemingly magical powers that Pocket Fives had in hold`em. Well, this term reappeared in my personal vocabulary, as pocket fives was definitely my most important hand of my long poker weekend.

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Permalink | Playing For Money

June 7, 2004

Seat Open - Table 4

by Luckbox

The poker blogger community is exploding, there's no doubt about it. When this humble poker blog started last September, I was excited when we reached 25 visitors a day. In our first month, we reached about 750 visitors according to Site Meter.

In May, 22000 people stopped by Up For Poker or read an entry in syndication. That's about 715 every day!!! And we just keep growing!

Now it's your turn to get your poker ruminations published on Up For Poker. Since early March, the stable of semi-regular contributors has dwindled to just two, and Otis is about to go on a well deserved hiatus. That means I need writers!

If you're interested... read on...

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Permalink | Poker Web Sites

Otis: Hiatus

by Otis

About every two days my wife looks at me and says, "Where'd you go?"

My eyes have drifted off. They might be pointed at a billboard or a eatery menu. A few people know the look, though. It's blank, hollow, and could be 100 yards deep. She knows as well as I do that I'm not looking at anything tangible.

"I'm here," I'll respond.

"Bullshit." She says it in a way that is neither mean, nor condescending. It's a matter of fact statement because, it is, in fact, a matter of fact.

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Permalink | Other Gambling

June 4, 2004

Cold Cards, Hot Dice, and Mrs. Beautiful Pt. 3

by Luckbox

(See Pt. 1 here and see Pt. 2 here)

As I stretched out on my couch after the drive home, I closed my eyes and could still hear the casino in my head. The sounds are addictive. I wanted to jump in my car and drive back to The Paragon. Instead, I reminisced about Mrs. Beautiful.


Wednesday afternoon

Lunch was good. Not as good as the lobster tail dinner, but good enough to get me itching to gamble again. I headed back to the casino floor with a purpose. Apparently, the casino didn't understand my purpose because things quickly went awry...

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Permalink | Craps , | Other Gambling

June 3, 2004

Cold Cards, Hot Dice and Mrs. Beautiful Pt. 2

by Luckbox

(See Pt. 1 here)

As I drove home, I wondered how it all had happened. I had a plan when I left early Tuesday morning. Swirl was in a kennel, I didn't have to think about work for two days, and my $500 already felt like it wanted to be $1000. The best laid plans...?

Tuesday evening

I didn't watch much of the news. In fact, I watched more ESPN than anything else. I was restless. I kept going over in my head how I had lost $100 without even trying. I started gambling at about 12:30 and after just 2 1/2 hours, I was wondering if I should turn around and go home.

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Permalink | Other Gambling

June 2, 2004

Cold Cards, Hot Dice, and Mrs. Beautiful Pt. 1

by Luckbox

As I left the casino, I took a deep breath. It felt like I had just gotten there, yet I was exhuasted. And if I waited any longer to leave, I'm sure I would fall asleep at the wheel... and it's a drive you don't want to fall asleep on...


Tuesday morning
The drive was relatively short, just over an hour, but it winded through some small Louisiana towns I've never seen before and wouldn't be comfortable stopping in. Soon enough, the flashing sign welcomed me to the Paragon Casino.

It was my "free" casino holiday visit, and I was planning to make the most of it. I had a $500 bankroll in my pocket and visions of check-raises dancing in my head.

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Permalink | Other Gambling

June 1, 2004

The State Park Game

by Otis

"Otis, have you ever had one of those ideas that the moment it pops in your head, you know it is the best idea you've had all day long?"

That was the way G-Rob began the conversation.

"Sure," I said, "but not recently."

"What say you and I go downtown and drink five or seven beers?" he said.

In short, we were bored. Everybody else was wrapped up in family stuff and we had nothing--nothing--to do.

I told him that sounded like a better idea than any I had and I'd call him back in 30 minutes.

When I got off the phone, it sounded like less of a good idea. Bored drinking, especially the kind that begins with the idea that we'll drink five (or seven), often results in us drinking fifteen (or seventeen) then popping for a cab to get home.

That's when I remembered.

The State Park Game.

I'd heard about it from a guy who came to my home game several months before. He'd left his cell phone number somewhere among my poker chips. It took me two minutes to find it. I made the call and asked if G-Rob and I could play.

I heard the voice on the end of the line scream, "Hey, bud! Two more?"

In the background, I heard the affirmative response. The State Park game would accept two new players, relative unknowns, into the weekly tournment action.

I called G-Rob back.

"G-Rob, have you ever had one of those ideas that the moment it pops in your head, you know it is the best idea you've had all day long?"

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Permalink | Tournament Action