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Losing at Turning Stone poker

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  • Losing at Turning Stone poker

    Turning Stone is a casino in upstart NY run by Native Americans. It is just off exit 33 of the NYS thruway, located in Verona NY.

    It seemed like a good idea.
    It was raining.
    Elizabeth was gone all day.

    So I rigged up the van with the mattress all made up. I have great sheets now, these old soft flannel sheets. I found a new blanket that works as a draping door too. And the best innovation was a $1 plastic table cloth from the dollar store in black. The plastic is so thin that I can close the hatchback on it and that effortlessly takes care of the sun through the back window.

    The trip out was great. I decided to see what I could do about gas expenses so I traveled the NY Thruway where the max speed is 65 at 55. When I started my MPH was 17. When I got home it was 24.5. Very soon on the trip it jumped up to 20. I estimate this saves a fifth of the price of gas. I estimate it adds 20 minutes to travel. So how much is my time worth. Well, if I dropped my speed each trip by that 10 MPH, I'd be earning about $30 an hour for my effort.

    I liked just being in the van and driving along with no passing, no coming up on anyone. Other times, dropping to just the speed limit, I'd find I had tailgaters, but this was not the case at 55MPH. Folks just passed me. Once I had an annoying tailgater, but it was because s/he was going to exit.

    I did not go directly to Turning Stone. I went to The Landing, my campsite for the night. I saved a dollar on the toll as the GPS took me off at exit 31, and I also got good variety in the traveling. It took me through Rome, NY. so were I to do this at night, I might plan in a stop for dinner at the Savoy, one of my favorite restaurants.

    The woman in charge of the campground remembered me and gave me my favorite spot. For $25 I got a hookup for my sleep apnea machine, a close bathroom with a great hot shower, and a picnic table for my breakfast of hard boiled egg, sourdough pretzel, and trailmix. I was ready too to make my own coffee in my new traveling cup, but as it turned out, I did not bother.

    I was at the casino by about 4 PM and I played until 4AM and then slept just a few hours.

    Poker buddy Ezzy showed up. He had decided too that it was a rainy day and taken the long drive out, but he left at 9PM. He played very well, was very hard to beat, and took away a good bit of money. Then he got picked in the random drawing for a $350 tournament seat, so he was very happy.
    All of us got horses to watch in the Belmont, but we did not win whatever the promo was at Turning Stone because our horses did poorly.
    I needed to be back home by 3PM on Sunday, so I knew that I was not going to play long on Sunday and when the game turned into young guys who had lost their NL money and were just betting everything on the Limit game, I wanted to stay and play.
    This is the game to play at Turning Stone, one with some action.
    The table not to be playing at is the one with six tight players. Turning Stone rakes early, so that small pots end up giving the house, the bad beat, and the dealer about 30% of the pot. So there are not winners unless the table is full and there is some action. In games where everyone sees the flop and there are nine players, then it is worth playing. Otherwise, I will quit unless there are at least seven.
    On and off the table went down during the time I was there, but never for very long. I'd be just about to leave and in would come new players.
    They did drop the rake to half when there were just five playing, but they still took much of it early.
    However, for the first part of my play both the tables I was playing at were full of good players. There should be at least one good fish. I switched to a new table looking for that and got even better players. On those two tables I lost $163. I could have made that up on the third table, but I just missed the pots. One other fellow came and he did not miss them. He made a bundle. I liked the game and I liked the good humor of the young fellows playing. It was my favorite poker time.

    At about ten thirty I decided to get some food and give the tables time to fill with looser players. I drove into nearby Oneida and stopped at as spot for a bowl of chili and an old fashioned milkshake made with cotton candy ice cream. These are treat for me. No one was there. One other couple was having pizza. The idea that a casino is an economic boom for the area is just a pipe dream. The casino was full. I watched a movie on a large screen. Horton the Elepahant and other cartoon characters were trying to save the little people on a flower. It was fun.
    But the dark streets of Oneida were just a bit depressing. The next day I drove early through Sylvan Beach and there too was little activity. I know it was a rainy cold day and it is still June, but there are some really interesting places there and it seemed deserted. I did not even see a good breakfast spot. Good thing I had brought my hardboiled eggs, cheese and travel mix for breakfast with the singing birds at the campground.
    I did think I'd play an hour of poker on Sunday at Turning Stone, but they had no 2-4 game and only a couple people on the interest list. They did have free doughnuts. So off the diet again.

    I am discouraged at this losing. Everyone says these streaks come, but I think to some extent it is my poor play. I did misread cards once, holding a 4 that I thought was an 8 and I lost there, even raising on my faux straight to the Queen. Dumb. That cost me at least $8.

    The people were fine. They were more fun later. I especially liked a Black guy who was funny and very aggressive and lucky as well, catching the river, and playing for a long time until his woman made him leave. She was funny as well. A big, loud Hispanic girl, just full of banter.

    I liked the adventure. But I did not like the ride home. I was too tired. I napped at a rest stop. That got me thinking that perhaps I should skip the camp ground and drink enough coffee to play into the early morning if the game holds up, and then just drive to a truck pull off on the Thruway and sleep for free until dawn. For one night that might be the best idea. Two nights I need to camp and have the shower.
    I might also look for a similar camping opportunity near Mohegan Sun/ Foxwoods and drive out there for a couple nights. I like the games there and do better. They rake the same as Turning Stone, but they don't take it very fast, so it is 5% to 10% plus bad beat and tip.
    Last edited by dewey089; 06-13-2011, 02:19 PM.