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11.24.04  Potpourri

Every once in a while, no one thing jumps out for me to write about. My good friend Jay thinks I should write about a recent Ben Bliewhateveritisafterthis article where he calls for a ban of Dark Ritual and Mishra's Workshop in Vintage, but I'm not a Vintage expert, and he actually makes a couple good points, although his scope of knowledge seems far too narrow to try to call for bannings of particular cards. But the reality is that there is no reason to write something like that. Other Vintage fans will dive in with the energy I could barely muster to write this paragraph, and its not like Wizards is sitting there going “Oh, no! Ben is calling for a ban! Let's get right on it!”

To say that I think that Wizards couldn't care less is too strong, but I feel pretty secure in saying that I doubt that article with have any impact whatsoever on any future banning, so really, why bother arguing with it?

(For the record, I agree on Dark Ritual, and disagree on Mishra's Workshop, instead following Jay's argument that the better thing to ditch is Trinisphere.)

So, without the glory of writing about Vintage, and since the event this weekend I worked was a Yu Gi Oh event instead of Magic, this week is going to cover several smaller topics instead, a potpourri of sorts for you.

Poker Woes

So, I play in a weekly poker tournament at this bar in Chandler. Its free entry and the top three players get $100, $25, and $10 in gift certificates to the bar. They provide the tables, chips, cards, etc. All in all its very cool of them, and it doesn't break any of the AZ gambling laws, since a) everyone is over 21 b) the house takes no rake and c) the house has no advantage, which is the three biggies in AZ law. It averages about 50 to 60 people, and believe it or not its mostly pretty good players, especially considering its free. Since I'm getting better and better at poker, I now play there every chance I get to learn from the better players without getting river-ed out randomly by play money Party Poker players who just don't care.

Last Thursday was poker night. We had forty people which means the tables were sparse, my table had five people on it, and for over an hour I couldn't get anywhere than plus or minus $400 of the original $2000 start up. One by one the other's start to fall . At three people left, I called an all in to take out the third guy, but still put me under the chip leader. I played fine, and started taking chips from him, and got a good all in when I had A6c. I won, he had to go all in blind, and I won the table. That table was nuts tho, with people getting river-ed out left and right, and twice I split on an all in bet, so it seemed the poker gods were determined to have fun with me that night.

How right I was.

My friend Jay played as well, as did Mike and Steph, two other friends who actually told us about the tournament. Mike made it to heads up on his table but lost, Steph made top three, but lost on an all in when she had pocket 8's, respectable. Jay played the longest heads up ever, but finally won out with 3-2 off suit off all things.

I have been determined to play more suited connectors, so when I got 9-10s, I called the big blind. I was down a few, but not much. The flop came Q-9-10, skittles. Two pair is good I hear, and even better if some guy has a Queen in the pocket, I now have him smashed without him knowing it, but I think I should have slow played it in retrospect. I bet $500, one guy called. Turn was a 10. The guy next to me was playing pretty loose, but was up in chip stack, so I figured my all in would either give me the pot right there, or even more if he called. Sure enough he called.

He had K-10, so he had trips, quite the respectable think to call with.

Of course, the river was a K, giving him a full house 10's and K's, beating my full house 10's and 9's.

What ya gonna do?

Smiley Faces

Recently my laptop died. For those of you that don't know me, my laptop is my life, it has everything on it, so when the system refused to even turn on, I was in a panic. Even as we speak right now my portable is dead and gone, and I am typing on my wife's computer, where, thanks to my good friend Ben at least all of my data is backed up. There is a problem with my Wife's computer, however, it has no colon/semi-colon key. My two year old popped it off a few weeks ago, and we lost the little puffer piece that goes under it, and when we got a new one, the plastic frame broke trying to put it back in. It was a nightmare, but at least the colon is not a highly used key, right?

Well, unless you IRC, or use some form of instant messenger. I can't make smiley faces any more! When I type in a line now, I have to think twice or three times about how to word it, because without a smiley face its impossible to tell if I'm kidding or not.

Look at these two lines for example -

<RayP> You could just message me you know.

Compared to -

<RayP> You could just message me you know. :-)

The first one reads like “What the hell man??!?! Don't you have a clue? There's a command called /msg which would be infinitely better than the lame crap you just did.”

The second one reads like “Hehehe, you know, messaging me would have worked there, but no biggie, I don't really care that much.”

I miss my colon key.

Unhinged and other events

I hope everyone had a great time at Unhinged this past weekend. I wish I could have been at one of the events, but alas, I had to instead run a Yu Gi Oh prerelease. But Sunday night I got to do a two person draft against my wife with the cards, and we had a great time with it, although my wife got angry at me for never letting myself get caught in a Gotcha, and “burning her out” once with Wet Willie of the Damned and double Sautee.

The set seems pretty fun, although two man draft of it was not very impressive. Wizards has said that set is actually great for drafting, so I'll have to try it later with more people. On Wednesday San Diego Tournament Organizer Dan Gray and good friend Becky Dodd will be heading down here for Thanksgiving. Maybe I'll try to line up a draft Wednesday night for it. It seems like red and blue may be the way to go, but you need to have some faith in your Goblin Paratroopers if you want to make it work.

While you were all playing Unhinged, I had 160 or so kids for my Yu Gi Oh event. Running a Yu Gi Oh event seems to take twice the staff of a normal event. The kids are younger, they don't listen as well, and they have attention issues. This is not to say they are dumb, just that they're kids. This is how all kids are. Yu Gi Oh events are the only events I have where it takes ten to fifteen minutes just to get the players seated after pairings are posted. Overall, these events are fun to run. It's always great to be able to see all these kids so excited about the new cards and having such a great time, if only they'd stop asking me for free cards.

See you next week!

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