Another Disappointing Saturday

I know I said I wasn’t going to use the blog to whine about stuff, but I’m making an exception, you’ll see why. The last few Saturdays I’ve either been out of town or had Boston Debate League obligations, so this was the first time in like a month that I’d gotten to play poker. Saturday is special because Poker Stars and Full Tilt both offer special weekly $320 tournaments, and Poker Stars also has its weekly $475 satellites for the European Poker Tour. I was excited to play these, firing up the EPT Dortmund satellite at 11:15, the EPT … Read more…

Poker Night

My friend Logan is a third-year law student at Harvard and hosts a poker game most Wednesday nights. This is the third year he’s had it, and it’s evolution has been interesting. Three years ago, it was a $.25/$.50 Pot Limit Hold ‘Em game with a $25 buy-in. I remember once losing more than $50 there and losing sleep over it. At that time, I was the only non-HLS student there, and though I was better than the average player in the game, I was quite bad. There was only one guy there, Paul, who could be called a poker … Read more…

Poker and Emotion

After my most recent post about trying to limit the influence that day-to-day poker swings have on my mood and emotional state, I found two interesting comments on the blogs of other poker players. The first is from Curtains: “Probably the true key is to stop getting happy when I win money? That’s an emotion that you generally pass off as being okay, because it feels good and how can anything be bad if it feels good? However it’s generally impossible to be very happy about winning money, without being really unhappy when you lose money. If I eliminate the … Read more…

A Vegas Vacation With No Poker

I’m just back from a week out West with Emily. Though we flew in and out of Vegas and stayed there Friday night, I didn’t end up playing any poker. Mostly we were there hiking, enjoying some warm weather (while Boston was getting nailed with the worst they’ve had all winter), and spend some quality time together. We left Boston early Monday morning so that I could play all of the big online poker tournaments on Sunday. I figured I’d either get eliminated early and get some sleep or stay up all night making a big score. I ended up … Read more…

Public Debates Part Three: Faneuil Hall

I wake early on Saturday morning in order to get to Faneuil Hall by 8:45. The event doesn’t start until 11, but I’ve arranged for the debaters to come in early in order to work with some volunteers who will help them “put finishing touches” on their presentations. This is a nice way of saying that I have reason to think some of them will be massively underprepared, and I don’t want them to embarrass themselves (or, by extension, me). I’m on my way out the door when my phone rings. I’m terrified that this will be someone canceling on … Read more…

Public Debates Part One: South Boston

Some quick background for those who don’t know this already: I was a nationally competitive debater in high school and college. In a lot of ways, I credit debate for making me the person I am now: confident, smart, socially conscious, well-read, and ethical. Debate helped me in school and helped me get into a good college. While in college, I started volunteering with, and then working for, Chicago’s Urban Debate League, a non-profit organization that starts debate programs in public high schools in Chicago. After graduating from college, I turned down an offer of a full-time job with benefits … Read more…

EPT Barcelona 2006 Day 5

No Vendar Flores I didn’t get to bed until 4AM last night, but I suck at sleeping in and wake around 9. For once there is no rain, and I am really not bummed about busting on day 1 of the tournament, since I now have two more days to tour Barcelona. I haven’t yet been to La Sagrada Familia (The Holy Family), a 19th-century cathedral designed by Barcelona’s homegrown architect Gaudi and probably the city’s number one tourist destination, so that’s where I’m heading today. I eat breakfast and make for the train station, about four blocks from the … Read more…

EPT Barcelona 2006 Day 4

I show up early at the casino to make sure I have time to register, and who should be next to me in line but Yurian? We’ve got time to kill, so we get lunch along the waterfront. I let him choose the place, and he selects what is essentially an overpriced fast food pasta place. So much for Europeans having good taste in food. At least he speaks some Spanish and is willing to be pushy about getting the check. Level 1: Blinds 25/50 The 1 seat is late to arrive, and loses a big pot almost immediately after … Read more…