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Ocala Florida Poker trip report

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  • Ocala Florida Poker trip report

    A Day of Poker at Ocala Jai

    So here is how it is for me and
    poker down here in Florida.

    played about 11 sessions last year and came away down money. Usually, just a few
    dollars, but still that did not do much for my confidence.

    year I played one session at Tampa Hard rock and lost, but I was ahead for a
    while and my new hit and run no limit on short stack strategy had me winning and
    feeling like I knew how to play that way against people who I knew could outplay
    me in the long run if I wasn’t short stacked.

    decided that I just wouldn’t bother so much with Tampa Hard Rock this and fish
    more mullet than poker pots, although those little critters have proved tougher
    opponents than rock hard poker partners.

    I just go the the Hard Rock a few times when I have people to get at the
    airport, but when Elizabeth feels comfortable with no car for a day and can free
    me up on a Wednesday for the Ocala Jai Alai games, I play there for

    Wednesday and on Saturday they have a spread limit 1-3 game. There is no way to
    expect to win money because the rake and tip take so much, but in the 1-3 I can
    expect to have a bit of fun and break about even.

    happens on Wednesday is a bus load of seniors from a huge nearby senior complex
    called the Villages come in every Wednesday and so that 1-3 spread limit game
    emerges as variety to what is usually a no limit game.

    sort of game can also gives me the kind of social interaction with banter and
    jokes that I like to mix with the poker.

    is not the cosmopolitan crowd I love in Vegas at limit games, and some of the
    people are taciturn, dull, and well.......pretty brain dead dull. They seriously
    treat the 1-3 like real poker; there are always a few old men annoyed with life
    and everything who don’t like a lot of joking around because life is not funny
    and poker isn’t either. Why these old grumps would no sooner joke around at a
    poker game than they would at the Baptist Evangelical Gun collectors rally and
    rebel flag waving tent salvation convention.

    others are good humored and good for conversation and banter.

    met a guy who lives summers up near Bar Harbor. Maine. and he was interesting to
    talk to because my poker buddy Ron goes there every year and we shared a bit of
    his hometown, with him mostly talking about his pleasure in escaping..

    day trades in stocks down here in Florida, but when he said that, the one good
    humored guy Walter actually thought he said he traded in
    and seriously asked him what that was like, so that became the joke of the
    afternoon, revisited time and time again. I


    right next to me was a woman who knew that we were just there to have fun, and
    she said so, and she got soused on beer and laughed like a college girl, and had
    a grand old time without being very obnoxious although she did seem to embarrass
    her ride Rick at the other end of the table who was sheepish and quiet and
    probably wanted to take her home. She built good pots and called even when she
    did not get lucky.

    own humor was sometimes missed.

    John got a bit annoyed at me when after my reraise right before the drunk lady
    who asked me what I had ( I reraised on the button preflop with pocket kings
    trying to limit the field by taking a woman’s initial bet of $2 up to the
    unheard of extravagance of

    had just won a pot with a flopped two pair the hand before, and the drunk lady
    started to do a fake whine and complain in a good humored fashion about me
    bullying and such.

    told her that I was really forced to make the raise because once again I had two
    pair on the flop. (remember this is preflop so that is absurd)

    that joke just swished over the heads of whole table and old dull and serious
    John started to complain about such a ridiculous position, and lectured me that
    I could not have the two pair because there had been no flop. I guess he
    seriously thought I seriously believed I held two pair was telling my true hand
    and an idiot besides.

    that I tried to be less dry and made my jokes more transparent and simple.

    on socks trading in Maine worked with allusions to L L Bean. Well, old dull John
    did not quite get those either, but they weren’t about poker, so he was just
    quiet and I guess seriously counting his outs or figuring his pot odds or
    communing with God about guns or just sucking something out of the hollows of
    the few teeth he had left.

    lady was in her late seventies and acting like a teenager, but not in any
    obnoxious way. I liked her and so did Walter, except she kept elbowing him in
    the ribs and once she punched him in the arm.

    laughed, but I think he was a bit annoyed.

    acted after her and was a very good poker player except he explained every one
    of his decisions, so he gave away too much information. Some poker are more
    afraid that they will be perceived as bad players than they are of losing pots
    because people correctly perceive them as smart.

    was a fine game to play for fun and for the high hand house award of $100 given
    every 30 minutes. Two people at my table won this during the afternoon and it
    was a great deal of fun to see a nice high Aces-full posted and then watch the
    countdown clock and wonder if there was time for someone to catch a better hand
    or if the high full house would hold up.

    dealer said that the room was packed on New Years even when one of these high
    hand awards was worth $2013 and it was actually won by a woman who early in the
    hour caught Aces full and then saw them hold up for the money. The rest of New
    Years Eve quads and straight flushes won, but that big hand awarded the full

    high hands to count there needs to be $10 in the pot and both cards have to
    play, but one could be a kicker, so an A-6 with a flop of three sixes would

    when some won, the casino made a nice little fuss, coming with a camera to take
    a photo just like hitting 10 grand in a Vegas slot.

    like all of it. It is the same entertainment as Vegas with less risk and these
    high hand awards are much more satisfying than that constant banter about “bad
    beats” in most places.

    a while it was the only limit game, so high hands could be expected more often
    at that table and folks played all the possibilities so even though the rakes
    were high, the pots could get big, splashed as they were by straight flush

    opened up a 2-4, but I stayed with the spread limit because I like it better.

    did not hit any high hand, but I did very well for a while and then I lost my
    profit back playing one hand really poorly that I should have just tossed back

    the drunk lady left with other people on the senior citizen bus, including
    Walter, and left me with the dull witted taciturn old grumps.

    left the 1-3 table down three dollars after a few hours, well, really up $7
    since my early play at no limit had cost me about $10

    took the last seat at a 1-1 NL game and entered in first position and too the
    option of buying the button. For $2 that makes sense to me. I’m only playing
    mostly button and near button hands anyway, as well as the many, many limped
    blind hands I get to play in this game because it is not an aggressive game and
    preflop raises don’t happen so much.

    dealt 7-2 of diamonds. Remember I’m in first position.

    diamonds come on the flop, so I check and then call a $2 bet somewhere with a
    few callers. I am very weak, but this is like a 2-4 game.

    all check the turn.

    river comes with the diamond, but I check it in first position figuring anyone
    calling me has a higher flush. One woman bets $2 and everyone

    I say, “How about $10?” and toss in two red chips figuring that if she has a
    small flush, but one probably higher than mine, with this hefty check raise, I
    might be able to push her off of the smaller flush for this match the pot

    thinks a minute, but not long, and she calls.

    I guess she has got me beat.” I say , and turn over my cards.

    she doesn’t.

    to sit down and win the first hand from terrible position with

    I learn all day is that I can’t put people on hands. I’ll watch the betting, put
    them on such and such and I’m just stupid about it. Sometimes I win with my

    one game I am on the button with A-Q and I raise to $3 because this will take
    out the terrible blind limp cards. yes, in this game $3 will steal

    flop comes A-x-x and I make a bet on the button and get maybe two

    should have bet on the turn, but I worry about A-K and there is not much to draw
    to, so I let it go with a free card.

    the river, a king falls and a guy bets just ahead of me.

    call and when he flips his cards, I first see the K and I’m so sure he had A-K
    that I groan a bit before I see that it is K-something and he was calling me to
    draw into some inside straight and instead of worrying about my Ace, he bet his
    second best river king but not so much as to push me off my pair of

    I learn that this inability to read hands is one of the reasons I can’t play
    this game well. And this makes sense to me and explains why I do better at our
    weekly game with the same fellows every week, but don’t do well in the casino. I
    can put them on hands because I know how they play. In the casino I just suck at
    reading strangers.

    I really don’t put a guy on a hand is when we are heads up and he is betting
    small with a large full house. I’m calling. He is just trying to get the pot up
    to $10 because kings full is at this point the high hand of the half hour, and
    he wants to be in that $100 running. I never put him on such a hand and he puts
    me on something pretty low, so he even after he has the minimum, he just value
    bets the river for $3. Maybe he hopes I will come back over the top and try to
    push him.

    he shows the kings full high hand, I am very surprised. And then he says that he
    had tried to signal me to help him out with getting the $10 minimum in the pot.
    I feel pretty stupid. I completely missed any signal and did not put him on much
    of anything and was in the dark about anything inspite of the obvious clues that
    I guess were right there.


    was no chance to play short stacked on a 1-1 $60 max table. I could have joined
    higher staked tables, but I liked playing where on a small bankroll I could play
    real poker and did not have to leave when I doubled up. For a good bit of the
    time with $160 in front of me , I was top chipped guy at that NL table by $40,
    so no one was going to take me on the river for all my money. Playing short
    chipped here would mean playing with a $20 buy in and going all in preflop
    against just a few dollars and certainly making these folks angry.

    would be the ultimate grind and not much fun. To hit and run with a $20 profit
    is not appealing even to my small potatoe self.

    this was not a game with many all-in bets and most of those would be made from
    nut hands. Very little bully bluffing at all. So the advantage of short stacked
    play, the absence of the big bluff, was absent here just as much as at a short
    stacked, higher stakes and aggressive game.


    well as learning that I can’t read strangers and put them on hands, I think I

    better learned when it is time to go home.

    the limit table there was a time when the fellow next to me from Maine turned
    and said, “Man, you sure are getting some good kickers.” I guess he missed how
    many hands I tossed away and that I was only showing good kickers because I was
    only playing good kickers. In that game good kickers would win more money than
    good hands because folks were playing king and Ace with small kickers right to
    the river. But I realized that this drew attention to how tight I was and it
    might be time to go.

    the no limit, the fellow who got and quickly lost the $100 high hand bonus,
    looked at me and said with some annoyance, “You know the only hand you have lost
    is when I had the high hand and beat you.” pointing out that if I was in it to
    the river, I was strong and not just full of hope or bluff. So, with that being
    my table image, explained for anyone who had not noticed, it was time to leave
    there too because second, third, and fourth best were going to stop calling,
    fold and not pay me.

    perhaps it is time to leave whenever I am up $100 at any game.


    finally, the “junk winning hand” of the day happened to me in middle position
    when I limped in with a dollar because I had not played in a long, long while. I
    held 6 and 10 of clubs. What was I thinking??

    flop was 7-8-9 rainbow and I slow played well enough, made a pot building bet on
    the turn when there were also two clubs giving me a flush possibility as well,
    and I had three callers when I bet my $15 on a no flush possible river, one
    raising to $18 to go all=in and go home. My straight was a surprise to everyone.

    for once I had correctly read that no one had the nut 10-J that might have made
    me cry.

    My lucky hand,” I announced hoping to spoil a tight table image, “I win so often
    with these two cards that I just have to always play them. 6-9 works that way
    for me as well.”

    don’t know if they believed me.

    day’s hands themselves were no great wonder. No pocket Aces or Queens or tens
    all day. I lost with Pocket kings and twice with A-K. Pocket fours flopped a set
    ,and I slow played and did well on that pot against two pair bettors. Pocket
    8’s, 9’s, 2’s 3’s 5’s went no where. Suited connectors never connected. I think
    I got one full house all day and no Ace high flushes. But $104 is huge for

    take it.

    tell me on Saturday the high hands are awarded $500 every 30 minutes, but the
    room is full and so the odds dwindle or perhaps stay about the same as there are
    perhaps five times the players in each hand. Still, the 1-3 game will be there
    for certain and that is the one where the high hands have the best odds of

    be back.