Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Holiday

So I'm at the Bike at 9:30 on Memorial Day, and Everyone is screaming and yelling and upset and drunk and stuck and I am gonna lose it. At least it only took 32 minutes to get here.

As for me...last week was my worst week of all time; even worse than the HG prop week in March 2010. I erased everything I won in May, plus like an extra $5K, with the highlight coming as a 5 rack loss on Thursday. I'm still OK, as I apparently had more pink chips than I knew what to do with, but if it happens again this week, that OKness will definitely be in jeopardy.

I wish I had more to say, but apparently I'm playing 2-3 NL. I can't actually think of a worse way to spend a holiday come to think if it.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


MikeL and I just invented Ba-Donkey, and played the inaugural hands HUHU yesterday while waiting for the 40 to start. The game is simple enough:

1. Best Badugi wins.
2. You get 5 cards, not 4.
3. You draw twice, not thrice.
4. Bets increase every round in 1/2/3 structure.

We're considering making it pot limit, but think it has merit as an action game. You heard it here first.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Lateness Percentage

Upon reading my last post, Danielle had two comments to share:

1. Spot on. That's exactly what my text means.

This is disconcerting to me. It's like she already knows the translation is going to occur, so she's perhaps taking that into effect when giving the prediction, causing a constant increase in her lateness factor over time. It's sort of like the old software adage that the project will take 2 weeks longer than you think it will take, even if you know what I just said.

2. You need to discuss lateness percentage as well.

She's absolutely correct, so here it is. Lateness percentage can be both a lifetime and single shot statistic, and is calculated simply as the percentage late one is of the total time before the predicted event was to occur. For example, yesterday's "I'll be home by 5pm for sure" text was sent at 3:30, and Danielle got home at 6pm. So she had 90 minutes to achieve her prediction, and missed by 60, for a lateness percentage of 66.6. Obviously this is a very impressive number, one that is quite difficult to achieve in many cases (such a number would require being several hours late for a simple dinner date). Obviously some players will do better in short predictions than others, but in general the shorter the time frame the larger percentages can come into play, but in general anything over 50 is "pretty freaking late".

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Lateness Factor

So today as I was laying triple bogey in the Commerce 40 (that's stuck 3 racks) trying to hole out a 7 iron to make a 6 (which I did eventually accomplish) Danielle responded to my text saying that she would "home by 5 for sure". I like to have this information, especially these days now that we have no kitchen, couch, TV, or really internet poker to speak of to entertain me. It motivates me to play until a certain time, and gives me a sense of accomplishment when I make it. It got me thinking, though, that implicit in my digesting of that text message is a bit of translation work that I have to do whenever Danielle gives me anything resembling a completion or arrival time. This translation is basically based on the sum total of my experience over the last eight years, and is pretty hand wavy at best. There are lots of things that need to be considered, obviously, like whether or not she actually cares if she's going to be late, if she enjoys her current activity, etc etc (this is the woman who once looked at the clock and said "Oh good, I'm late I can leave now"). This got me thing if maybe we can do better, and I believe the answer is a resounding yes. I give to you now a new subjective and therefore non-sabermetric-approved statistic; Lateness Factor (LF).

Lateness factor for a given person is defined as followed. Simply ask the person's significant other (or if single, best friend) to translate various arrival time predictions and apply the following rules:

If they translate "definitely"or "for sure" or "will be" to "probably", add a point
If they translate "probably" to "maybe" or "might be", add a point
For every half hour of lateness they assume, add a point

The sum of this scoring system is the Lateness Factor. For example, I've decided Danielle's current lateness factor is about 2 (she used to be a zero, for the record...much like athletic performance, I predict lateness factor will change for the worse with age), which means her text of "I'll definitely be home by 5" could translate into any of the following:

1. I'll definitely be home by 6
2. I'll probably be home by 5:30
3. I might be home by 5

Obviously the higher the lateness factor, the more possible translations exist, but practically speaking the statistic really only has meaning from values of about negative one to three (the big potato almost certainly has a negative lateness factor; if I schedule a lunch for 12pm, he will definitely be there by 11:30). Values outside of that range are pretty much useless, as they indicate a basic disdain for any sort of scheduling whatsoever.

Mildly Related Tangent

Most people use the commonly accepted scoring system of 1 to 10 to gauge a person's attractiveness (the poster formerly known as cgrohman prefers a binary 1 or 0 scoring system, but many feel this is short sighted). What does this mean? People aren't really sure, but here is my interpretation, specifically that it is a log scale:


These people are merely mildly pleasing or displeasing to the eyes. They are in short average.


These people are "1 in 10s", meaning that saying someone is a seven means that roughly speaking if you saw 10 other people on the street, you'd expect one of them to be about as attractive as said person (just the opposite for a 4).


Same deal, except 1 in a 100. So someone who rates an 8 is reasonably likely to be the most attractive person of a group of 100. A 3 would likely be the homeliest.


Same deal, but 1 in a 1,000.


Same deal, but 1 in 10,000. In short, at a large university like, say, Penn State, with 30K undergrads, there should only be 1 or 2 women you'd rate as a 10.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

60/120 Shot

Yesterday was a bad day at the bike, which is becoming more and more frequent. Basically we are becoming victims of our own success; today I played 20 minutes of 40/80 before getting plucked out of the game. Yesterday was more of the same, with me playing something like 75 minutes of 40/80 on my shift and another couple hours of 25/50. Yes I'm getting paid to sit on my ass, but that's basically the deal I quit at Oracle 3 years ago and I'm not really interested in going back to it. The army of yellow chip props doesn't help, because it's even getting hard for me to get into that game. On top of this they still owe me a bunch of back pay (from not paying me a high enough hourly rate, or for enough hours) and I was just told that since I'm part time I can't be granted a leave of absence for the 5 days I need off for my Pittsburgh trip (even though I've already squared away to swap shifts with BJ and basically get every hour I'm going to miss covered) and would technically need to be fired and rehired. As we speak it's being "worked on" but if the answer comes back that that'll have to be the solution (and therefore my 90 day probationary period, after which I'm supposed to get more money/hours/benefits, will be extended by over 2 months) I'm going to have to take action.

So on to the title...after my shift yesterday I drove over to Commerce planning to play 40 or 20 or just something and lo and behold there was a must move 60 running with 2 open seats, two players I recognized as fish, and a third I could stereotype easily as such. So I checked my pants and found they were in fact still there, pulled my pink chip from my pocket and bought into the game for 2.5 racks.

As it turned out not only were the 2 fish still fish, and not only was the stereotyped as a fish fish actually a fish, but also there were 2 other big fish and one of them was on my immediate right. My seat was worth $150/hour, easily. It had to be one of the best seats available in all of southern California, and I had just luck-boxed my way directly into it. And so we played poker....

Honestly my session wasn't that interesting. The megafish flopped a flush with Q6 (open limped UTG, call the 3 bet no problem) but only started the hand with $500 so my top pair didn't get hurt too bad. I missed a flush draw...meh. Then I started to flop shit, specifically sets. And they held up. And I won. After 2 hours I texted Kangster (one of the half dozen or so internet kids playing the 20 for a living now) to ask if he wanted dinner, but said I'd have to see if my fish busted. Then I won another huge pot, and resolved to pick up at 7pm (just before the next collection pot....another interesting thing about this game). The fish busted UTG and did not rebuy, and I basically followed him off the table, which may have looked bad but whatever, I was leaving anyway and Kangster bought me dinner in exchange for some life advice of questionable value. I shipped a 20 bet win, or $2400 American, and realized that the big potato was right when he said "If the Commerce 60 isn't on your radar, a prop job should be. If it is, though, you maybe shouldn't be looking to prop"

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Governator Gets His Dick Wet; Hilarity Does Not Ensue

OK so that's not really what I'm going to blog about, but in case you missed it the governator just admitted to having like a 20 year affair with the maid, complete with love child and everything. The general consensus here in the land of fruits and nuts is that "he's a politician, what exactly did you expect?" I mean people aren't even surprised, let alone upset. I guess I can't really blame them.

Moving right along, I'm in the process of trying to get "Google Music Beta" or whatever it's called (Danielle promises me the internal project name was much cooler) up and running. I got a perhaps not 100% legitimate invite that apparently was only supposed to go to family members of the people who worked on the thing, not family members of random Google engineers, but nonetheless my foot is wedged firmly in the door and I don't plan to remove it until it has been bludgeoned to a bloody pulp from their repeated efforts to slam the door force me to yield. The basic premise of the service is "We are Google and this is how we roll. Why don't you put 20,000 songs in the cloud and let us let you stream them from any device with an internet connection. This way you won't have to give apple $500 every two years and we will be one step closer to complete world domination." Given that my stance has and always will be that iTunes is one of the worst pieces of software ever developed (seriously, it's got to be up there with the dot net framework in terms of pure processor crushing ability, obfuscation, and seemingly simple commands that simply don't fucking do anything...synch! What happened? Nothing. Where is my shit? Here? There? On the phone? In a hidden folder? I don't like Microsoft either, but they've finally got one thing right, even if it's 5 years late. TO THE FUCKING CLOUD!!!!) I plan to adopt this paradigm as quickly as humanly possible. To the writers of Pandora I also say...tough cookies.

I was going to write some more stuff about how MikeL owned my face today like 14 times in a row, or about how apparently now I am into rap and lady gaga, but instead I guess I'm going to try to go finish staining the planter box for our transplanted rose bushes. Oh wait, one thing...I bowled a 182 last night because I am awesome. Seriously 137/157/182 La Peste said I might be the best "straight ball" bowler he's ever seen, which is sort of like saying I'm the smartest Baldwin brother or the Pirate's ace, but whatever. In all eight of us came out for bowling and Hypperprank and the Big Potato couldn't even make it. Kangster still owns pop-a-shot but my skills are improving.


Monday, May 16, 2011

And Another Thing

First of all, I'm happy to report that our first Live at the Bike 40/80 Cash Game was a rousing success. I didn't get a seat, but that night everyone was talking about it (and by everyone I guess I mean Bellatrix and 3 props at HG, but still that's a start) and in general the buzz can be nothing but good. My main concern going forward actually is that the fish we put in the game will see the coverage and realize they are fish....but MikeL assures me that won't happen and in matters such as this I usually defer to his judgement because it's easier to just not care. I didn't actually get to play (and you'll need to create an account to view the broadcast), but it's still fun to watch. Joe Tall make his appearance about midway through and the commentating even gets un-terrible.

Next....everyone is an idiot. First I went to Commerce last week and got back to my car to find not a small but in fact rather large dent in my door. It's like people actually try to slam their doors into you when you're there; they enjoy it or something. Next, I was driving home from Home Depot yesterday (we average about 10 trips a week these days, with Danielle making 80% of them solo) on the 55S and saw in front of me about 3-4 baseball sized rocks just lying in the middle of the road. I said to myself "Self, that's strange" but then was appalled to see, floating in what appeared to be slow motion (that's what happens when you're going 70 MPH), a 5th rock sailing over the giant concrete wall. The rock somehow managed to not hit my car (honestly I don't know how that happened) and I just ran over one of the others that the (no doubt) 14 year old boys on the other side of the wall had previously chucked. Danielle and I have decided that 14 year old boys are the stupidest things on Earth, and 12 year old girls are the loudest. Seriously...throwing rocks onto a freeway? Really? And finally just now as I was getting to the Bike I got off the 710N and found myself...immediately behind a giant parked truck that said "lane closed". So I just sat there for 10 minutes, wondering what would happen, until eventually he moved and I was able to at least go west on Florence (not east, like I needed to, but at least I was off the freaking ramp) and eventually got to work.

This month has not been the rousing success that April was, but I have at least been winning a little. I took a large loss playing 30 deuce to seven and lost something like 4 racks on Thursday and Friday last week, so I guess other than those two days I'd be saying "weeeeeeee!" but I can't really complain. Except for the fact that the bike still hasn't figured out how to pay me properly, which my boss has assured me for the 3rd week in a row will be fixed this week.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Sports Railing Followup

I just wrote this on 2p2 and decided it was good enough to post here in it's entirety.

Oh and for the record I have solved prison over-population/expensiveness in a way that is congruous with "thou shalt not kill". My plan calls for an identity exchange program with whatever is the poorest most AIDs-ridden country in Africa. The pilot subjects will be the dodger's fans who beat the giants guy 7/8ths to death (and if we can't find them I suppose we can just use two random dodger's fans that'd be fine with me). Basically it's a complete swap of identity, assets, citizenship, rights, even perhaps faces (Nic Cage's last good movie IMO) with someone in said African country (which looks like either Congo or Zimbabwe). Bang! No death penalty, no expensive prison situation, and to boot some dudes from Africa can stop trying to rape virgins to cure their AIDS and get a fresh start on life in the suburbs.

Now for some questions:

But Jesse, how will we pay for it?

Ah good reader I'm glad you asked. Remember, it's a complete swap. The Africans get whatever assets the American felons could lay claim to. This will be more than enough to get them started off towards living the American dream.

But Jesse, the average Dodger's fan who is capable of beating someone to death (or even 7/8ths to death) is $200K underwater on his mortgage, has $40K on his master card at 29.9% and a credit score that couldn't win the batting title. How will they survive in such dire circumstances.

Bad beat.

In Which I Will Rail On Sports

First of all, at the time of this writing I am,, simply announce that the Pittsburgh Pirates currently reside in 3rd (third...that's just two spots below first) place in the NL Central with a record of....wait for it. 18-17. By beating the Dodgers (more on them later) tonight, they moved within a mere two games of the division leading Cardinals. Ladies and gentlemen, this is fucking monumental. Usually a Pirates' season is measured by a few simple numbers;

Starting pitchers on the DL
Date of 82nd loss
Date of 100th loss

To be above .500 this "late" is simply fantastic. If the current trends continue, to quote my father, I am 100% sure they probably could win 75 games this year. 100%. Now, on to more serious business.

First, we have Rashard Mendenhall. What a freaking jackass. My father originally thought that the Steelers were actually going to have to cut him after he shot his mouth off, people in the town were that upset (it soon became clear that they would not cut him for a number of reasons, including "there is a lockout they can't cut anybody", "he could honestly probably sue them in some way connected to his freedom of speech being violated", "he's pretty good", and finally "they have nobody else"). I'm a pretty big homer when it comes to the Steelers, but just JFC what a freaking idiot. You are a football player; play football. Don't say things that will seriously upset your fans, no matter how "right" you think you are. It's not rocket science here. Take the ball, hit the guy, goto the huddle, repeat.

Next on my list of people/organizations to win a Chucky (what a great award, seriously) would be the LA Lakers, and specifically Andrew Bynum. The hit he laid on whoever the other guy was (honestly I don't even know) was one of the dirtiest I have ever seen. Admittedly I don't watch much basketball, but...seriously? If he's suspended for less than 5 games it's all a complete joke. If I were in charge I'd give him 10-15 and make him goto like anger management counseling or something just for shits and giggles. And the worst part is I had to listen to everyone talking about it all day today, and a good number of them were actually trying to defend both Bynum AND the organization. Honestly Orange County is kind of growing on me, but can freaking have it. And besides, at our current rate of southern migration, Danielle and I will be living in Ecuador by 2025.

This whole Lakers debacle reminded me of another glittering example of how we treat people here in LA, specifically the vicious beating of a Giants fan last month after a Dodger's loss early in the baseball season. The last report I heard is that the victim is still in a coma with an extremely bleak prognosis; it'll be a miracle if he ever even wakes up, let alone has any brain function when he does. This story managed to further entrench my belief that the best course of action is simply to wait for "the big one" to do her worst and then rebuild this city from scratch. The people responsible should literally just be shot in the testicles, stomach, and finally face, or perhaps we could set up some sort of identity exchange program with a country in sub-saharan Africa where by their citizens get to trade places with people we want rid of. Come to think of it, that's a fantastic idea; just officially revoke the guilty party's complete identity and all the rights, privileges, and assets that come with it and simply give them to to someone in Africa who through blind luck or an act of God somehow does not yet have AIDS. And while we're at it, let's relocate the Dodgers to Rwanda, or at least let Mark Cuban buy them and be done with it.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

He Was Value Betting

Last night as I was lying in bed with a million things swimming around in my head (as usual) I wasn't able to keep my brain from thinking about the hand from yesterday, where my opponent raise/called the A98-9 turn and then bet the river Ace when checked to. What on Earth was going on there? It kept vexing me until suddenly everything became clear, like a light switch got turned on:

He was value betting the river

It has to be true, and makes all the rest of his actions make some semblance of sense. He checked the flop because he didn't have an ace; how could he bet the flop without an ace? But he "knew" that I "knew" that he didn't have an ace either. So when I bet the turn, he put me on a huge range of hands, and when I 3-bet, he assumed not only that I could be bluffing, but also that he actually beat some value hands (presumably TT-QQ) and therefore opted to call me down. When I checked the river he just assumed that I was giving up and hoping he'd check behind and decided to get that last bit of value from my jacks. In retrospect the river showdown gave his intentions away; he showed his kings with pride, and when I saw them and quickly uncovered my full house he was just completed disgusted, that look players get when they can't believe their opponent has slow-rolled them by way of such stark incompetence.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Rate the Plays

In this post I challenge you the reader to rate from 1-6 the severity of each mistake made in this hand. The game is 25/50 LHE and my opponent opens the CO and I defend. My read on him is basically standard LA lag-fish. It's pretty apparent to me that he thinks I'm a nit.


Check. Check.


Pause. I bet. He raises. I 3-bet. He calls.


I check. He bets. I tank and then call.

MikeL declares "bad call" and my opponent turns over...KK. I roll T9o and drag it. "wow can't you ever lay down a hand fish!" comes the banter from Mike. "Good bet sir you'd have had my money".

So we have six decisions up for ranking:

1. My defense pre
2. His flop check
3. His turn raise
4. His turn call
5. His river bet
6. My river call

Have at it.

Monday, May 2, 2011

For Want of a Stamp

After claiming yet another victory in live poker today I decided to spend some time thinking about whether or not I'm willing to try and resume online play on some of the "smaller" sites. I spoke to a couple of friends all of whom were of the opinion that "yeah sure honestly what's the worst that could happen" and I tend to agree with them. Then I spoke to another friend who was happy to sell me some dollars on one site and put me in touch with someone who would help me move some of those dollars to another site and things were just going swimmingly except for one thing; I needed to send the friend a check, and my checkbook is obviously packed away lord knows where. Undaunted I set out for the garage, but upon staring at the two rows of 40+ boxes felt immediately sure that I was going to have to concoct some elaborate now 4 way deal involving Bike chips to get the man paid. But then I remembered that my life boom switch is currently activated and took another look; sure enough the box I needed was right on top of a stack of 5, probably in the top 3 or 4 easiest to access positions. I tore it open dug down deep and BOOM checkbook. I took a minute to peruse the rest of the box and decided to claim some tee shirts (being used for padding) and a hoodie (same deal), then glanced at the stamps.

Thoughtful Jesse: "Hmmm, stamps are a good thing to have. What if you need to mail something?"

Regular Jesse: "Come on seriously man when's the last time you mailed someone a fucking letter put the stamps back in the box."

Thoughtful Jesse: "OK"

I pack the box back up, even taping it up because Danielle would be pretty irked if I just went leaving open boxes all willy nilly all over the garage. I put it back in it's spot and walk upstairs to tell Danielle of my victory. Then I walk into the other room and pull up my friend's mailing address that he just gave me ten minutes ago and....

Seriously it's a wonder I can dress myself in the mornings sometimes.