Friday, June 17, 2005

Am I crazy? Since getting back from the WPBT Vegas trip a couple weeks ago, I hadn't fired up any online poker until this morning. And this morning, I didn't even really want to; it was just the only poker that was accessible to me at the moment.

I've been thinking... I want to play more live poker. Of course, I've always preferred hitting the Diamond Game at Scott's or some JackHammer action at Armando's, or any random friendly game that pops up over online poker. But I enjoyed playing online too. For some reason, after logging some casino hours a couple weeks back in Vegas, and logging some hours a few months ago in March, I want to log more casino hours. My rate of profit per hour is much high live than online. Now, maybe that's because I'm usually two-or-three tabling online, so the variance is higher, but that should all even out over time, right? Granted, my number of casino hours is overwhelmingly dwarfed by the number of hours I've played online, but here's the thing:

I enjoy playing live much more than online.

I feel like my game is better. April H. and I were talking about this on the way to the airport in Vegas: I can pick up betting patterns and mannerisms that provide information about my opponents almost as second-nature at a live poker table. Online, the best I can seem to do is take detailed notes on everybody. But, I'm nearly wholly reliant on those notes; the patterns I pick up don't seem to commit to memory. I think it's because I just can't seem to equate a pixel-based avatar to a person. There's nothing about seeing a bunch of avatars that clicks with my note-taking, particularly because each avatar is representative of hundreds of different people. But sitting at a live table, my brain makes connections. For example, our last day at Excalibur, April and I were playing at the $1-3 spread limit game, and one of my mental notes was "big guy plays big cards." I thrive on mnemonics and other such memory aids, and my brain makes them up automatically. April, by contrast, finds it easier to notice patterns online. I would imagine that everybody has a strength in one venue or the other.

At any rate, I've had this nagging thought in my head that I want to play a greater proportion of my poker live in casinos, and a smaller amount online. Not that I want to give up online poker - blasphemy! I just want to play more live. I mean, hell, I've got the Trump poker room in Indiana all of 30 or so miles from me.

Just something I've been musing over the last few days...


  1. Human Head said...
    You have live poker that close? What are you waiting for? I'm very jealous, the closest live poker I have is 3 hours away, what a pain in the ass.
    April said...
    I think with more live experience I'll get better at reading people at the table. I was concentrating so much on when it was my turn to bet that I wasn't paying attention to the people around me. For my first time I think that was the way to go and by Monday night I was noticing some patterns here and there. I have a long way to go to notice the things you were picking up on but I think I'll get there eventually.

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