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

September 30, 2005

A dispatch from London

by Otis

The pint glass is labeled Guinness, but it ain't Guinness in the glass. Still, it tastes good. My only worry is that I had a confirmed Iggy sighting in the U.K. last night (word is he made the money in some Irish tournament), and if he walks in and sees this, I could be in trouble.

Nonetheless, as I sit here in The Vic, a good beer is a necessity. The day is already 12 hours long and promises to be at least four hours longer before the stop of play. Greg Raymer is cleaning house. Ram Vaswani is living up to his nickname. Isabelle, Mean Gene, doesn't play until tomorrow (I won't mention again how she greeted me last night).

So, why do I slip in from the darkness of this casino and into the bright light that is UFP?

Well, in case you hadn't noticed the blinking banners all over this page, the first-ever Blogger Championship is now a reality on PokerStars. If you have a two-month old blog and don't sign up, you're just silly. First prize is a free trip worth $12K to the WPT event in the Bahamas in January (read: a return to the place where I may or may not have fallen off a fake rock and nearly died).

It's been hard as hell to keep my mouth shut about this thing for the past couple months. I'm happy the cat is now out of the bag.

So, make it happen, cap'n.

Who says bloggin' ain't paying off?

Permalink | Tournament Action

September 28, 2005

WPBT Euchre Tourney Update!!

by Luckbox

Well, a bitch of a storm named Rita kept me busy for yet another weekend. Come Friday, I'll have worked 31 out of 33 days. I don't think that's healthy, but that's the job, so I really shouldn't complain.

Hopefully, there won't be another hurricane any time soon and I can actually get this tournament started! So far we have 8 confirmed teams:

1) Heather/CJ
2) Drizz/BG
3) Matt from Austin/Megan from Austin (Readers and ringers?)
4) The Donkey Feltchers: Maudie/Daddy
5) GRob/Uncle Ted from G-Vegas
6) Jim/Bob from Detroit (Reader)
7) Patrick/Danny (Reader)
8) Lefty/Jason (Ringer)

If you want to get on board and need a partner, check the comments on this post. Then email me with your partner at Euchre -@-

For complete rules, see below:

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

September 26, 2005

LOST: Bash at the Boathouse 2005

by Otis

The Rooster is a cagey character. The table was breakable plastic. The cards were sticky. Bobby Bracelet was using a pack of "I love my penis" matches as his card protector. Mike seemed increasingly angry at the deck and the way it attacked his stack in retribution for his only buying in for $70. Helixx smiled. BadBlood tried not to flex. John kept asking how many cards he could use. Steve talked about massage parlors. "Not like I know or anything," he said. Spaceman came over later after busting out of the NL game. Twice, I think.

Our game was HORSE. And The Rooster, as I said, was a cagey character.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Otis' Thoughts

September 25, 2005

Gambling With Your Life

by Luckbox

Hurricanes are -EV.

If I ever sit down at a poker table and I've Katrina on my right and Rita on my left, I'm leaving.

But this isn't about poker. It's about the worst kind of gambling. It's about mother nature's version of Russian Roulette. It's about ignoring the warnings and gambling with your life.

Thousands of people gambled with Hurricane Katrina like they were Gus Hansen holding 3-4 offsuit. Katrina was holding the nuts. More than a thousand people died. Hundreds of those likely could have gotten out if they wanted to. They made a choice, and it cost them. Everything.

Hurricane Rita did not have as many fish at her table. When the storm approached, people fled in droves. They picked up their bankroll, toked the dealer and politely said goodbye to the rest of the table. Very few people decided to gamble this time.

When the word to evacuate comes down, it's not a bluff. It's deadly serious. When the Hurricane arrives, it will be making poker hands with a Euchre deck... the rest of the cards are yours. Who do you think is going to win?

Permalink | Luckbox's Thoughts

September 22, 2005

Mapping Otis

by Otis

He expected the sand to be whiter, the girls more tan, the boats in the harbor to be a little more broken down. The image he'd conjured when he hopped the puddle-jumper out of a South Florida regional airport was one out of the movies. The women would all have impossible legs. A bartender with an accent would sit under a tiki hut and serve warm beer in sweating bottles while he listened to the lamentations of the expatritots. The lives the future alcoholics had led would be the lives that led them to the little island and the bartender would listen to it all.

But that's not what sat at the shore. The sand was white, but not that white. The bartender had an accent, but she was the only one with impossible legs and she didn't feel like talking after a long day of standing behind the bar.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Otis' Thoughts

September 20, 2005

Come on, people

by Otis

It's only been 18 months since I had a few hundred bucks for a bankroll. It's only been 18 months since Pauly and Iggy only had vague idea who "Otis" was. Life has changed a lot on both fronts.

To what do I attribute my good fortune?


Yeah, I won my first ever blogger touurnament. Then I won my second.

Now, I won't say I have the perfect life, but it's damned close, and it all started changing the moment Pauly went on tilt and I got heads up and won with Professional Poker Player Chris Halverson.

So, with that in mind, go sign up for tonight's Blogger tournament through Pauly or Iggy's link.

Blogger tournies are good food. And readers are welcome as well.

Permalink | Tournament Action

September 19, 2005

Viewer mail!

by G-Rob

I get all kinds of great questions here at "UpForPoker". People need to know things. Lets answer a few :

Yes, this IS my real hair.

No, Otis is not a made up name.

Yes, I'm really THAT bad a poker.

But sometimes I get a question so good it deserves a post of its own. Such is the case with this gem from our G-Vegas buddy Otit:

I know you guys have talked about what personality types are more conducive to successful poker playing. From the other direction, what personality type stands to learn the most from playing the game? Poker is a game of selective aggression. A person who is aggressive will probably be more successful in business and life than a passive or indecisive person, but I would think learning to control that aggression and use it selectively would make them even more succesful. On the other hand, can a person who is natural non-aggressive and indecisive actually use poker to develop aggression and decisiveness in normal life? Also, will it even be POSSIBLE for a passive person to develop a consistently aggressive style at the table, i.e. ramp up and be aggressive and maintain that under pressure? If so, for which type is it easier to make an effective transition? I would think full-time aggressive to selectively aggressive would be much easier because you are toning down a desirable behavior instead of correcting an undesirable one.
More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Poker Theory

September 17, 2005

The First Quadrennial WPBT Euchre Championship Tournament

by Luckbox

It's a game that's sweeping the nation! I can only imagine it's soon to be featured on the OLN network complete with Euchre hole card cameras. Who wouldn't watch this?

With that in mind, and because Up For Poker is always on the cutting edge, we're announcing the First Quadrennial WPBT Euchre Championship Tournament. Why Quadrennial? Well, either we won't want to do this more than once every four years, or it will take four years to finish.

Here's how it will work...

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Tournament Action

September 16, 2005


by G-Rob

So we're playing the usual Thursday game in the murky hollows of Castle Blood, and things are going well. I'm up about 2 or 3 buyins and the others seem willing to rebuy. But all good things end, don't they. Eventually the NL Hold-em players would leave.

They did.

And I nearly triple up in 1 orbit....with a game that doesn't exist.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Home Games

I'm Tired

by Luckbox

A couple of house-cleaning announcements...

First, see the post below for exciting news about Tri-Clops!

Second, stay tuned for official notice of the first (and last?) WPBT Euchre tourney. Start finding your partner now, you'll sign up in teams of two.

Last, but not least... why I'm so tired.

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

September 15, 2005

When it's not all about poker...

by Otis

When CJ launched Up For Poker, it was a geat outlet for our competitive exploits. We never really thought much would come of it. It was simply a way to move the poker content off of our personal blogs.

Over, lo, these many months, CJ has invited several people to contribute here. We've had many a guest writer. But, as UFP gelled, it became clear that CJ, G-Rob, and I were going to be the chief writers. A collaborative blog is a great deal easier to maintain than one authored by a single, tired poker player. What's more, it offers insights from different styles, levels, and bankrolls. Of course, try to pigeon-hole any of us, and you'll be making a mistake.

Why do I bring it up?

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Reading Material

It's been a while...

by Otis

Really, I don't even deserve to be here right now. Thankfully, the boys are taking care of the shop in fantastic fashion. Read CJ's proof that WSOP poker is rigged below.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Tournament Action

September 14, 2005

WSOP Poker is Rigged

by Luckbox

It's an epidemic. It's bad enough that every online poker site let's you win early just to take your money back after you make a withdrawal. As Ron Burgandy says, "It's science." I suppose it's understandable. That's what you get for grabbing your cash and going back for more.

And of course, everyone knows that when a tournament or SNG starts to run long, the "finish quick" algorithm kicks in. You'll both be dealt a flush, or it will be boat vs. boat. But really, the site needs to move things along, so can you blame them. Again this phenomenon is a proven scientific fact. As Brick Tamblen says, "I DON'T KNOW WHAT WE ARE YELLING ABOUT!"

Which leads me to the venerable World Series of Poker. If you thought this would be the last bastion of "clean" poker, a few minutes of watching ESPN will quickly dispell those beliefs.

ATo vs. KTo and a runner-runner flush sends one packing (you're welcome Alan Cunningham).

John Gale apparently had no friends at the WSOP because they rigged the cards against him. 66 vs. AJ when Gale gets his J on the turn... but the 5 on the river gutshots Gale right back into his seat. On the very next hand they rigged things against him again. TT vs. 44 and a 4 on the flop crippled the Gentleman.

And, who could forget how the behind-the-scenes folks carried T.J. Cloutier to the crown: A5 vs AK, and T.J. catches his gutshot on the river and wears his 6th bracelet.

WSOP poker is rigged. It's undeniable. Who's crazy enough to play this game?

Permalink | Bad Beats

September 11, 2005

Think Fast and Win!

by G-Rob

It's a nice, and fairly soft, SNG tournrey. You're about average stack, and you're in a raised pot after the flop. You're only in with one other donkey, and he's shown a tendancy to raise big slick to the river. He's almost never willing to fold a hand that he loved pre-flop. You have top pair and a flush draw so you toss out a bet, and now the maniac comes over the top.

For two seconds, the words "OVERPAIR" flash across your brian.

Now, I ask you, is that a good read? Or would making any well-thought read be exactly the worst thing you can do?

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Poker Theory

September 9, 2005

Old Dog, New Tricks

by Luckbox

I played in PokerStars' World Championship of Online Poker Event #5 yesterday. It was a $200 NL Hold 'Em rebuy tourney. Both GRob and I received free entries thanks to Nolan Dallas and the fine folks over at PokerStar. They know how to treat bloggers right! And I'm not just saying that because Otis is cashing a HUGE paycheck right now!!!!

2146 people entered and after the rebuys and add ons, the prize pool easily cracked a cool million. GRob finished in 940th when his AT lost to QT when a Q hit the flop. I was knocked out a little while later in 799th when my AJ ran into AK.

Those numbers don't really tell, the story, however. I was extremely happy with my play despite the disappointing finish. Amazingly, I can be taught... someone tell Felicia!

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | Tournament Action

September 8, 2005


by G-Rob

CJ and I are playing the $700,000 guaranteed event today at 3PM.


Chances = mega slim.

Wish us luck.

Follow the action

WCOOP info

Permalink | Online Poker

September 5, 2005


by G-Rob

Last night, it happened again.

We sat, under a billion watts of blinding light, and waited for a race to end. Saturday night we lost just 6 minutes to a Busch series race, which is really NASCAR's minor leagues. Then Sunday, as was expected, the big race in California kept us off the air until 12:17.

There are usually just 4 of us in the studio when we're in a delay, usually the same 4 souls. The weathergirl is from Kansas and her husband's a big sports guy, while both members of our floor crew love those speeding cars. Same people, same situation, invariably the same debate.

Is NASCAR a sport?

You almost certainly have an opinion.

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | G-Rob's Thoughts

The Wheel

by G-Rob

Not the Ace to 5 kinda thing, but more the 9 to 5 cycle. At least, in the sense that it's a grind. This is the world of poker blogs. There's always a 50/50 split in the blogsphere, the good and bad, the hot and cold, ying and yang. I'm no Eastern Spiritual, but if there's true balance in the universe, someone out there is on the happy side of variance.

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

September 1, 2005

Me, We, and Us

by G-Rob

In Ashland, everyone has the same Friday night plans. The high school plays football under the lights at Putnam stadium and, in Ashland, even the most tired old ladies grab maroon seat cushions. The student section is in the north end zone, right next to the Tomcat pep band. I went to every game there for at least 10 years, and at the very last one, I took a punch in the face.

That year was a good one for me. I'd always had a good group of friends, and my life was too busy with baseball (usually pickup games in the park) and such to worry about the social ladder. But, I assume this is usually true, the senior year is something special. My confidence was swollen to the point that, at that fooball game, I actually used this line on a very pretty girl, "So, you want to come over to my house, and see my stereo? Its pretty big."

I didn't have a follow up, when the girl said, "Sure!"

More in this Poker Blog! -->
Permalink | G-Rob's Thoughts

Free money, good cause

by Otis

I've been waiting until today to announce this here. Long story short, PokerStars announced a 20% bonus today up to $120. That's a frequent thing and normally wouldn't get a splash here.

However, in light of the sickening tragedy in one of my old haunts and Wil Wheaton's generosity, I thought this one deserved a little more play.

So, go deposit some cash in the best site on the 'net (and I'm completely serious about that), get your $120 in free money, and use it to help out the folks who have been affected by Hurricane Katrina. I see Gracie and Al Can't Hang have already signed up. Thanks guys. PokerStars has charity buy-ins from $5 to $100. All but one penny of the prize pool gets matched 100% by PokerStars and sent to the American Red Cross. Plus, while I can't release the specific details of the prizes yet, from what I know, there could be some really cool prizes for the final table finishers.

I'd play if I could, but I can't due to my relationship with the site. In lieu of donating there, I've sent some cash with a poker buddy who is taking a truckload of supplies down to the coast from Memphis. But I'd really appreciate it if you folks could go over to Stars, create an account if you need to, deposit just a little money, and give. If you need any help, shoot me an e-mail or leave a comment with your questions.

Thanks folks. You'd be surprised how good karma comes back around.

Permalink | Otis' Thoughts