Tuesday, April 03, 2007

My new gambling love... poker!

I went to Vegas last weekend for my birthday and the first night there, Travis asked if I want to hit the poker room. I've never played poker for any money ever and pretty much have just seen some World Series of Poker episodes on ESPN, so I have an idea of how it works. And of course, I know the order of ranking on the hands. It was getting close to 1 AM and we hadn't gambled at all yet, so I said, "Sure, I'll give it a shot."

We stayed at the MGM and their poker room is actually not a room, but a barricaded area. It was pretty cool. We put our names on the waiting list for the $2/$4 limit table and while we were waiting, Travis filled me in on the procedure of the table. After about 10 minutes, we both had seats at two different tables.

I started with $100 just to test the waters. According to Travis, I bet loosely because I almost always put in my $2 to see what the flop was even if I had crappy cards. Then, I'd even go ahead and put more money in to chase a card on the 4th or 5th one. Sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't. I'm sure there's lots of room for improvement in my betting strategy.

Travis would come over periodically and see how things were going. Around 3 AM, he said, "Just let me know when you're ready to go, we can leave anytime you want." I furrowed my brow and thought, "Does Travis really not know me?" He walked away and I told the guy next to me, "That's like a drug addict telling another, I'll stop using drugs when you do!" Around 5:30 AM, my eyes were getting pretty tired, so I told Travis I was ready to go back up to the room.

The verdict? I had $97. Not too bad. At one point around 4 AM (?), I had almost all my chips in a big pot that I won (whew!) and came back to almost even money. So, overall, not bad at all, considering it was my first time playing ever.

We played a bit at the Flamingo on Sunday and while I think I was betting a bit better, I didn't get that great of cards. So, I think I lost about $40. The thing I didn't like about the Flamingo was that we were seated at the same table. I prefer being at two separate tables. However, the Flamingo had this jackpot board, so you could win $$ if you hit certain hands, mostly 4 of a kinds and straight flushes.

I'm totally ready to hit Vegas again and try my hand at more poker. I have several friends who are into poker though, so I'm sure I'll get lots of advice from all of them. I'm sure I'm doing everything wrong, but whatever. I had fun.

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