Poker Outing

It’s been a while since I played poker in a card room, so with the week off I headed over to Garden City Casino this afternoon. Garden City is an old-school card room, with a whiteboard for a waiting list, and tables jammed together on a big floor. Or rather, it used to be, but since I was last there – over a year ago – they’ve completely renovated the inside, with a new room for high-stakes games, electronic screens and waiting lists, and a spacious middle aisle and side area near the eatery. It’s still a little crowded with tables (though that’s to be expected in a card room, I guess!), but it looks much more modern.

(Oddly enough, they still don’t have betting lines on the tables, which was an issue in one hand today when one player thought another had raised, but the other claimed he was only counting his remaining chips, as raising would have put him all in. I’m not sure why they even make tables without a betting line anymore.)

I sat down in a 3/6 game after a short wait. 3/6 is what you call your low stakes game; maybe if you worked at it, you could lose a few hundred dollars in a few hours. I once lost $100 in an hour at 3/6. That was a pretty bad session. But it’s by far my worst hour in the hundreds I’ve put in at these stakes. So we’re not exactly breaking the bank here.

(Don’t ask me about my comic book habit, please.)

This was a pretty rough session, with a number of bad beats. Some notable hands:

  • My worst-played hand was probably pocket Queens on a K62r board, calling a flop bet, then folding on the blank turn, figuring someone had to have a King. The two players who showed down had pocket Tens, and a 6 for middle pair on the flop. I played this too timidly.
  • My pocket Aces got cracked when my opponent rivered two pair. Gah.
  • The roughest hand was playing Q9 and flopping a straight on the JT8 flop. Sounds great, right? Except my surviving opponent hit his river King and show AQ for a better straight. Painful.
  • The most amusing hand was ATh on a A98 flop, one heart. The turn was the Jack of hearts, giving me both the straight draw and the nut flush draw to go with top pair, giving me 20 outs to improve my hand. I didn’t improve on the river, but top pair was good anyway.
  • I lost with a set of Threes to a set of Jacks. What can you do? I flopped a set of Twos in another hand, but the board turned a four-flush and I was sunk there, too. If you can’t win your flopped sets once in a while, what can you count on in this world?

Thanks to the set-over-set hand, I ended up down for the day. Sigh. But I’d been down a lot more earlier in the session and clawed my way back to even. And I had fun, so it worked out. I’ll get ’em next time, right?