Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Pork Chops, Race Slicks, and Poker.

There's something definitely wrong with my brain. I hear, read, and see things in life that are clearly far removed from poker, but for some reason I frequently make the mental leap to connect the non-poker thing to the poker felt thing. Two items fit this mold last night when I was watching some late night TV.

First up was a replay of the recent Canadian F1 race in Montreal. I used to follow this form of car racing, but gave up a few years ago when the politics of which team gets favored treatment (and therefore is more likely to win) by the governing body got to be too much. Yes, I love the technology of these cars (e.g., KERS, CFD air tricks, engine tech, etc.) and race strategy (e.g,. pit and tire tactics), but I can't stand the politics, which seems to permeate the sport to its core. Ah, but I digress...  Anyway, during one of the pit row commentary segments, the manager of one of the teams offhandedly remarked to a reporter, "Reliability is vitally important to us. You can't win a race unless you finish it."  That's when the poker light bulb went off over my head. You can't win a poker tournament on the first day, the old saying goes, but you sure can lose it. Said another way, survival is equally important to chip accumulation. Note to self: remember this on Friday morning in Vegas when I'm not sure where I stand in a hand...

The second item that struck my poker fancy was a new reality show (don't you just hate that term?). Anyway, the series is something called "Life Below Zero," and it follows a disparate group of Alaskans that live above the Arctic Circle, eking out solitary livings by hunting, trapping, and fishing. In one segment, this big burly lady who manages some kind of equipment depot/encampment by herself out on the tundra was getting ready to make her nightly patrol of the grounds. She had recently seen wolf tracks in the camp, and has had bears break into her abode on multiple occasions. Anyway, as she was preparing to go out and see what creatures where waiting for her, she loaded up her gun and put on her game face. "They stalk me," she said, "And I stalk them. If you look like a pork chop up here, the predators will think you're a pork chop. Game over."  Again, the light bulb went off. Act like dead money at the table, and the predators will think you're dead money and run over you. Perception is reality in poker, at least in terms of fold equity.

Like I said, there's something definitely wrong with my brain.

Two days and counting...

All-in for now...

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