Wednesday, February 03, 2010

The Donkey Manifesto Presents - The List - Poker Strategy part 2

Hello Manifestites! See, I promised, and I delivered. Last week I posted part one of the 2nd installment of the list found here. For those who haven’t read it, go back and read first before starting here, as there is not much, but some cohesiveness to the two parts. One thing I’ll say before we start is that I leave the quotes as they were typed. There are some obvious typos, and half-drunken mystery words and various other things that I don’t really want to edit. I think they work well in their original state. That said, let’s jump right in, shall we?

When we last left The List, we were talking about gobblers and nits and beggars, oh my! TNL left us with some of his wisdom. Over the years TNL has come up with some great new terms. Here’s the birth of the term ratstab, which was invented one day when a friend would sit at a table, win a few small pots, make up some excuse about his wife needing him, then show up at a new table within a matter of 30 seconds or so and repeat the whole thing again.

thenutlow: gonna ratstab his way to another $6 profit andthen ysteriously have to do some made up bullshit so he can run down his hole with that big bag of loot ratting its way on his shoulder
thenutlow: "ratstab"
thenutlow: verb: to win a small sum of money quickly and escape the table for spurious reasons

Then we have the min buyin guys, aka maggots, another TNL term. These fuckers buy in for the minimum and are like small little firecracker mines on the table. Just big enough to cause a loud noise and maybe burn a little if stepped on, but small enough that it’s hard to see them. Here we have the tale of one particular maggot I ran into while trying to un-quit poker and was forced to play at the low levels:

XaQ Morphy: this other fuck bought in for $10 about 4 times, now has $85 and probably hasn't had this big of a win since he discovered himself for the first time

Speaking of maggots, I used to go out of my way to try busting them just to watch them erupt in a hate-filled drooling rant. TNL got a little carried away with this one:

thenutlow: wheres thes something strange, on the poker table, who you gonna call? maggot busters!!!!!

When we play poker, especially online, we come up with all sorts of pet nicknames for our opponents. Idiots, morons, donkeys, retards, nits, maggots, the list goes on and on. When talking about retards inevitably the thought of them drooling all over themselves while playing poker comes to mind. I’ve collected a few drool related comments throughout the years. Here’s two of the best:

RonDworkin: these people are going to drown in each others drool

thenutlow: this retard is the 10 times world series of drooling-onto-keyboard champion

And speaking of champions, I don’t even remember where this quote came from, but it’s funny as hell, well it is to me at least:

thenutlow: its like the natiional retards HU championship and these two have out-tarded the rest of the field and are battling huhu

Ok back to some poker shall we? One of the most important concepts in learning how to play poker is counting outs. An out is a card that will improve your hand. I won’t get too far into the theory here, but just a quick example. Let’s say you have 2 hearts in your hand, and there’s 2 hearts on the flop. There are 13 hearts in the deck, you know of 4 total, so to fill your flush draw you have a total of 9 outs. What is 9 outs like?

Mukwrm715: and 9 outs is like christmas for a player of my standards

I, on the other hand, disagree completely:

XaQ Morphy: 3 outs is plenty

Sometimes we are down to so few outs it seems like we have no chance:

FellKnight: I HAVE NO OUTS
XaQ Morphy: how about that?

Sometimes we have so many outs we don’t know what to do:

thenutlow: i cant even count the outs coz my socks are still on

And then of course, how to apply standard poker thinking to counting outs:

XaQ Morphy: sad fuckin day when you flop trips and immediately think about what your outs are

Taking the topic of outs one step further we have the term drawing. When you call a bet with 4 to a flush it’s called drawing to the flush. Drawing is the heart of the drooling retard strategy of poker. Where there’s a flush, there’s a way! How do I do when drawing, you ask?

XaQ Morphy: man I draw so bad I make a 2 year old retarded kid look like Picasso

And then of course there’s how well I do against someone who is drawing:

XaQ Morphy: the day I fade a fuckin J high flush draw is the day I win the poker champion of the universe award

Then we have the standard calling station line of thinking. Holdem is a 7 card game afterall…in this hand I made large bets on the flop and turn, my opponent who was obviously drawing missed, and I let him try to bluff on the river because I knew he had no chance of winning a showdown. He of course checked behind with no hand at all, and I won the pot…

XaQ Morphy: and can't bluff the river
XaQ Morphy: just gives up
XaQ Morphy: but I could bet $3 million into a 3c pot, and he'll fuckin call as long as there's a card to come

Ahh yes, drawing. One of my favorite subjects. Speaking of drawing and flushes and such, Omaha is known as a game of draws. It’s just about the only poker game where you can flop the nuts and be an underdog to win the hand. A fucked up game for sure. Note that there are two main forms of Omaha, high only and hi/lo, where the pot is split between the best high hand and the best low hand. If you don’t understand Omaha these quotes won’t make much sense, so I’ll stop babbling and get on with it. You may be familiar with the PLO (pot limit Omaha) Pied Piper of Donks series of videos found here, but I wouldn’t necessarily use them to try and learn the game or get any better at it. Over the years I’ve developed a hate/hate, err, I mean a love/hate relationship with the game. We start with a strategy tip on how not to play:

curtiskrunk: who reraises in omaha????
curtiskrunk: idiots, that's who

On the subject of Omaha hi/lo, Muk chimes in:

Mukwrm715: fucking people would ride a horse off a cliff if you wrote A2 on the side of it

In Omaha, hands with AA in them are very deceptively strong. They are great before the flop but are very hard to continue with after the flop. In this hand TNL and I witness some moron going broke with basically no hand as his aces go down in flames:

thenutlow: i mean if ur not gonna fold AA on that fucking flop, u might as well just set up a nodding donkey to mash the call button foreever more

Along with AAxx hands, double suited hands are another trap for our donkey friends. Give them a hand with 2 hearts and 2 diamonds in it, and they go wild. Or:

XaQ Morphy: the fucking cards could be a King, Apple, -5 and a piano, and these fuckers would see any flop as long as the colors matched

Because you can only use 2 of your 4 hole cards to make up your 5 card hand, hole cards with 3 of a kind in them aren’t strong at all, and are generally folded preflop. Or are they?

XaQ Morphy: It's a new part of my arsenal at the poker table. If you ever play me and think to yourself "what in the holy name of the donkey could Morphy have here?", the answer is just as likely to be the nuts as it is 2292.

Nearly all the online sites have Omaha tournaments as part of their normal lineups. A few sites have had rebuy events, where you can rebuy if you bust in the first hour of play. It generally makes for a crazy first hour, a fairly slow next few hours, and then a race to the finish. Well, that’s not exactly how TNL described it, but I was close:

thenutlow: the one thingi love about these omaha rebuys is that the tourney is deepstacked until the bubble,then the fucking penny donk scumcuntations just do all they can to bank a matchstick and then after the bubble breaks its just like a turbo shipfest

Most of the time I play Omaha it’s a pot limit format, PLO or PLO8 (hi/lo). Occasionally I’ll find myself stuck in a limit Omaha hi/lo game, and well…

XaQ Morphy: omaha without a "get my stack in now and get me the fk outta here" button is hard to play

One night famous donkey and former RGPer EstebanAA apparently was out of matches, because instead of just lighting thousands of dollars on fire, he decided to put it in play at various PLO tables on FullTilt. I saved a bunch of hands where he got his stack in with no hand, no draw, and no hope of winning, and sent them to some friends. FellKnight had this to say:

FellKnight: i could be blazed out of my mind on heroin, ecstacy and weed, and I'd still play better than that

Ahh, Omaha, how I hate thee. Then again, it could be worse, it could be 7 Card Stud, or Stud hi/lo (aka Stud8). What is Stud, you may ask?

thenutlow: if poking a hot iron bar in your eye was a sport, that would resemble Stud most accurately.

Stud games are played in what’s called limit form, which means that each betting street has its own set betting amount. Our friend Joe here (aka some anonymous fucker I only played once in my life) has limit strategy down cold:

Joe_Banks: there isnt alot of folding in limit, it just has to go yer way

I however, have figured out the secrets behind Stud games:

XaQ Morphy: I figured out stud/stud8
XaQ Morphy: it's a race to 2 pair, and then jumping around like a bunch of retards to see who wins

Another form of Stud is called Razz, which is dealt the same, bet the same, but the worst hand wins. Aces are low, and A2345 is the “best” hand. During what I like to call my Percocet years, before/during/after neck and arm surgeries in 2005/2006, I found I could actually play the game of Razz fairly well. TNL didn’t really get into it though…

thenutlow: blah blah razz talk blah blah

On the subject of Razz, one day I searched my stalker list (that is, a list of people who are really bad that I want to play again), I saw one of them playing a Razz freeroll. TNL has his opinion on freerolls in general:

thenutlow: i wouldn't play a 2 man freeroll vs the nodding donkey for a place in immortality

There’s that nodding donkey again…ahem, but Razz freerolls have a special place in TNL’s heart:

thenutlow: I sometimes feel sorry for these poor fucks that live on the streets and have to sleep in the freezing cold, but that pity pales in comparison to the levels of sorrow i feel for the fuckers that willingly enter a razz freeroll with 2400 people

Most players have their favorite hands in holdem and other forms of poker. There are also ones that players despise for one reason or another. AA is easy to play, just set up the nodding donkey, and well, you know the rest. 63 of clubs is easy to play as well, aka The Morphy, the power of 6c3c is beyond comprehension for most humans. A really tough hand to play is JJ, and…

XaQ Morphy: JJ on the button is like an invitation to just get up from the table and walk away

My most hated hand is KK. I seemed to do just fine with it until I met TNL. Only then I did truly understand his pure hatred for this miserable piece of poker profanity. As the old saying goes:

XaQ Morphy: someone wake me up when I get KK so I can get busted by A3o and go to bed

On the subject of KK, one night I was playing and got my stack in with KK vs. some moron with an A and fuck, I don’t even know if he had a 2nd card. As the board came down TNL switched gears mid-sentence:

thenutlow: Ace on the what the fuck?

Ahh yes, KK is possibly the most tilt-inducing hand of poker. Speaking of tilt, here’s one of the more interesting tilt chats I’ve seen. I was playing on some stupid ass site where you pay a monthly fee and all the games are essentially free, but there are ways to win real money. It was run by a former RGPer, and while it seemed like a good idea and was completely legal in the US, because it was basically a site full of retards and freerolls, it went the way you’d expect it to: straight out of business. Anyway, I was playing in a tournament one day and got moved tables. Suddenly I see this mess:

(Observer) samson1121: NIGGGER
(Observer) samson1121: ?#!*
(Observer) samson1121: #!*?#!
(Observer) samson1121: GAY
(Observer) samson1121: #!*
(Observer) samson1121: ?#!*?
(Observer) samson1121: #!*?
(Observer) samson1121: #!*
(Observer) samson1121: @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@
(Observer) samson1121: ?#!*?#!*?#!*
(Observer) samson1121: ?#!*?#!*?
(Observer) samson1121: THE ?#!*?#
(Observer) samson1121: ?#!*?#!
(Observer) samson1121: BAST ARD
(Observer) samson1121: F UCK
(Observer) samson1121: #!*?#!
(Observer) samson1121: NIGG ER
(Observer) samson1121: JEER
Nuke: ummm Samson -- he's not at this table lol"

LOL, seems our friend samson was so tilted he didn’t even realize the person his hatred was intended for was gone. Add a drooling retard and a freeroll site together with a smattering of tilt and what do you get?

(Observer) firemother: honey we'll meet in freeroll and then you talka big like now

Not sure what language that was, but maybe she could get this idiot to translate for her:

Christ1234 [observer]: all players wait of big carts many players play not poker

There are a lot of activities that are somewhat related to poker. A lot of poker players used to or still do play video games, some have played other card games, and a lot of them golf. Do I golf, you ask?

XaQ Morphy: I don't even bother trying to golf, cause anything as frustrating as poker that involves metal poles just has bad news written all over it

As you’ve seen in previous blog entries, I like to tilt people on the poker table, because it generally makes them play bad and give their money away. The guy below and I have a history of getting into it on the table. This exchange I just crack up over, so I’ll include it here:

PhippsJ: your like the 5 foot 5 guy at the bar trying to pick fights
PhippsJ: and everyone just laughs at
XaQ Morphy: yup that's me
XaQ Morphy: except I'm 5 foot 10
XaQ Morphy: and have a blackbelt in dawnkeigh-do

As the poker world knows, the internet is full of resources, from various web sites, blogs, forums, newsgroups, etc. The internet newsgroup (RGP) is where we all met, and really how this blog started. A while back Fell and I were talking about just giving up RGP because of how useless it’s become, but he just couldn’t do it. Why?


Necron99 chimes in with a great quote from several years ago:

Necron99: If the world was run by rgp we would all be sleeping with our cousins, living on diets of cheesewhizz and self treating serious medical complaints with a xanax and a bottle of good scotch.

Along with the newsgroups and forums, several programs and tracking sites have come out. My buddy IceOhio was having problems with his game, so he downloaded a trial version of PokerTracker (PT) which is a tool to help analyze your play. His results weren’t all that great:

IceOhio: i ran my hand histories thru PT.. it said "Ummm, dude. You need a new hobby"

One of the online tracking sites is called Sharkscope. It tracks online SNG tournaments and has various little icons next to players’ names to categorize them. There's a shark, several levels of stars, and for those not so great players, a little fishbowl with a goldfish swimming around. My thoughts on that?

(10:49:20 PM) XaQ Morphy: but to be honest if I had a fishbowl next to my name on sharkscope, I'd eat a gun

This next quote has no real place, but I thought it was funny so I saved it. A term in online poker that people like to use when winning pots is “ship it”, said when winning a pot. It does sound pretty, well, what?

tbuck27: I almost said "Ship It" and then I remembered I'm not a homosexual

Yes, that’s it. As seen in the first List entry and in part 1 of this entry, The List can show us how we progress throughout the years. This first quote was from April, 2007:

TheFlip2k1: that was ridiculous
obv: thanks for your valued opinion
obv: now shut the fkk up

And the next was just last year, in September of 2009. I wasn’t thinking of the quote above when I wrote this, but as soon as I did I had a déjà vu type experience and had to save it. Sure enough, damn near word for word:

goldgammon: rididuclous
XaQ Morphy: ty for your valued opinion
XaQ Morphy: now shut the fk up

So that’s it. A super long entry, a ton of quotes, and some seriously heavy poker strategy. I hope you found something in here to help you with your game, in one way or another. The next post or series of posts from The List covers the subject of animals. I won’t promise any type of date at all, but I will make a best effort to get it here before 2013. Oh wait, I forgot one last tip. Note taking is very important in poker. You should always take notes on how your opponents play, how they bet, what types of hands they play, etc. etc. I’ve taken this to an entirely new level, and I leave you with this final quote:

XaQ Morphy: I have a new way of taking notes
XaQ Morphy: instead of just putting hand histories into their notes, I'm gonna put the item that I'd most likely to smack them on the head with
XaQ Morphy: so this guy's notes are "tack hammer"

Until next time!

Yours Donkily,


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