Overall Rating: 1.5/5 Stars
In the early 1980’s, a series called Kinnikuman was popular in Japan in both manga and anime form. The franchise was so popular that the likenesses of its goofy characters were licensed for use throughout the usual range of merchandising; one of these avenues, rubber pencil erasers in the shapes of the fighters, became wildly popular with Japanese schoolchildren. When these small rubber figures made it to the United States, they were re-branded as M.U.S.C.L.E. character figures, with the acronym standing for Millions of Unusual Small Creatures Lurking Everywhere. In 1986, prolific developer Bandai created an 8-bit video game iteration of M.U.S.C.L.E. for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) console.
In M.U.S.C.L.E., two players can play against each other, or one player can play a series of matches against the computer. This is a wrestling-themed game, of which the NES had many examples, and perhaps was its closest parallel to a fighting game genre. This particular title has each brawler beginning with five bars (balls, more like) of health, which are whittled down through a series of attacks. The A button uses techniques, the B button jumps, and all sorts of moves can be used in a combination of moving, attacking, and jumping, including suplexes, flying kicks, clotheslines, etc.
Each of the eight selectable wrestler characters also has a special move, which can only be used once a Booster Ball is grabbed. These balls are periodically, throughout a match, rolled into the ring by a trainer peeking onto the mat from the side. Picking up the Booster Ball makes the character flash for a limited time, during which he (or she?) can execute their particularly devastating special move. Each bout between two characters ends when one wrestler wins two rounds first. The attraction to this game solely sits in the potential for two players to have a fun time interacting within the realm of abstract hit detection and quizzical combat techniques, along with unleashing the supremely amazing special moves. Look out for the tomahawks.
This is one of the poorest-looking video games in NES history. This is a sloppy, rushed, lazy job, because of one big flaw: The characters are rendered as relatively large sprites, potentially impressive for an 8-bit cartridge, yet without detail. The faces are completely blank, even spanning a dozen pixels across in a single color. There are outfits and costumes, sure, but even those are drawn in such monochromatic blandness that their sub-par quality is obvious. The wrestling mat is similarly drab, and even the title screen is underwhelming. The worst moment, though, is probably during the matches when the ropes are electrified, thus causing the entire ring to constantly flash in seizure-inducing fashion.
The sound effects are weird (check out the high-pitched beep of every jump) but the music actually is not terrible.
This may qualify as yet another crappy license game on the NES. Although it offers a limited storehouse of enjoyment, perhaps in the wacky antics of two-player mode, this still remains a crude, horrible-looking glitchfest with limited appeal. The hit detection is haphazard, the presentation is lackluster, and M.U.S.C.L.E. jump-kicks a single star and a half from five.
To conclude, one of the worst Pkv games in history and the less you mention it the better as there is nothing that keeps you engaged as the basic premise itself falls flat. It can be classified as neither good nor bad but extremely boring and the torturous experience has to be felt to be believed.
It’s a dream for all of us, isn’t it? Breeze into Vegas, have some fun, play a few games, and go home a couple of thousand dollars richer. The truth, of course, is that this happens only rarely. For most people, the way to leave Vegas with a small fortune is to go there with a large fortune. Lost Wages, Bummer City. For most people…
But here’s a way to visit Vegas and, quite consistently, go home with a tidy profit. It’s not that hard. First off, don’t play blackjack. Don’t play craps, roulette, the slots, or keno. Don’t play any game where the casino has a statistical edge. The longer you play, the more likely you are to lose.
Instead, start playing poker on buktiqq. You don’t have to be an expert. You don’t even have to be particularly good. All you have to be is patient. My very first experience of playing poker anywhere was the night before going into a Vegas casino. I got basic training and a few tips from a poker pro while sitting around the kitchen table and, the next day, made $120 in a four-hour session. And I’ve been able to repeat and improve that whenever I’ve visited over the years. Here’s how:
First, let me say that these tips apply only to live poker table games in Las Vegas. They will probably not be effective (unless you’re a real pro) at online poker rooms, at card rooms around the country such as Tupelo, MS and those scattered across Southern California. They don’t even apply to the poker rooms in Reno. Why? All those poker venues are full of pro or semi-pro players, waiting for a happy, clueless fish (like you or me) to join the game. On the other hand, Las Vegas, while it certainly has its pro players, is also full of tourists there for a good time and not caring if they lose a few hundred bucks. That’s the key.
Keep in mind that, at a live table game, you’re not playing against the casino; you’re playing against other civilians like yourself and the casino doesn’t care who wins. They provide a dealer (who does not play a hand) to make sure all the rules are followed and they get their profit by taking a small percentage of each pot. All the rest of the money on the table belongs to the players and is passed back and forth among them.
If you’re not already familiar with poker, get your basic training at home with an introductory book and friends playing for pennies. Make sure you understand the basic mechanics of how to play either 7-Card Stud or Hold-em, the two most popular poker games.
Once you’re in Vegas, don’t just sit down in the first poker game you see. Search out a poker room in a casino/hotel with lots of tourists wandering around and look for a low-limit game. Before telling the card room manager that you’re ready to join a game, watch for a few minutes. If only two or three players get involved in most hands and most hands don’t go all the way to the showdown at the end, walk away and look for a game somewhere else. However, if there are at least four or five players involved in most hands and most hands go all the way to the showdown, that’s the game you want. It’s called a “loose” game, where many of the players are enjoying themselves playing almost every hand even if they don’t have good cards. Get yourself a seat.
So, you’re seated at a real poker table in a low-limit game (which means that the maximum bet is perhaps $3 or $5) with maybe $50 of chips in front of you and you get your first opening cards. It’s not a bad hand; maybe a small pair that could get improvement as the hand proceeds. What do you do? When it’s your turn to act, throw them away. Slide the cards, face down, back toward the dealer and wait for the next hand. Here is the single most critical decision you can make if you’re hoping to turn a profit in a loose game: Throw away all opening cards that do not make a strong hand. (Your introductory poker book will have given you details about what constitutes strong opening cards.)
Maybe you’ll get involved in only two or three hands per hour. Maybe an hour will pass and you don’t get involved in any hands. That’s OK; the right cards will come eventually. In the meantime, watch the personalities and playing styles of the other players, admire the cocktail waitresses in the skimpy costumes, watch the parade of humanity through the casino. Relax and WAIT FOR THE RIGHT CARDS! Patience and discipline. Make that your internal mantra: Patience and discipline.
OK, your patience has been rewarded: You’ve got a pair of kings to open. You put some money in the pot and the game proceeds. When you’ve seen some more cards, it becomes clear that, while your kings have not gotten any help at all, the player across the table has improved his hand and is betting out strongly. What do you do? Throw those kings away and wait for the next good hand. The second most critical decision you can make: If it appears likely that someone else has a better hand, get out! It doesn’t matter that you’ve already put money in the pot; there is no sense in throwing more money in. Here’s the principle you want to follow: If it’s likely you have the strongest hand, bet and raise. If it’s likely you don’t have the strongest hand, get out and wait for the next time. Patience and discipline.
Will you win every hand? No, of course not. But in a low-limit game with tourists playing weak cards, it’s very likely indeed that, playing only good cards, you’ll win more than you lose. That’s the goal.
And did I mention cocktail waitresses? Do NOT drink alcohol while you’re playing poker. Stick totally to soft drinks as alcohol will destroy your discipline; that’s why the casinos give away the drinks for free.
Once you’ve gotten some experience and had some success in Vegas poker, you’re ready to step up to the next level: Find out when the next big convention is taking place (preferably a medical convention), and schedule your trip to Vegas to match. Go to a casino/hotel where many of those doctors are staying and watch the card room: If you see a loose game in medium-limit poker (maximum bet $25 or $50), sit down and get back some of those riches you’ve paid to pediatricians and orthodontists over the years.
If you are going to Las Vegas, then the first thing you should buy for your trip is a fanny pack. Both men and women alike please note this for your future trips. The fanny pack is not only excellent for what it can carry, but it is attached and difficult to lose. As an extra precaution, I put one of the straps through the loops in my blue jeans. I recommend that you do this on only one side, in case of bathroom emergencies. This is why not everyone is interested in carrying a fanny pack as they move to any casino. For such people, there is agen judi bola which is an online casino that they try without any need for carrying anything.
One trip to Las Vegas, I had purchased a fanny pack for my life partner. He was too macho to use it, and so it lay in the trunk of the rental car as we made our first casino stop on the way to the hotel. The man never had won more than $15 in a casino and on his very first dollar hit $250 in a nickel machine. Those were the days of the coins coming out and that amount meant a hand pay. All-day long he returned to that machine as I played video keno. All-day long he kept coming back to show me the bucket of nickels he had collected. At the end of the day, he still had every dollar of vacation money and an additional $500. We were about to leave but decided to get a drink before we ventured to the hotel. When he went to get his wallet, it was gone. There had been a crowd around and he had been bumped several times. His pocket had been picked. Now, he had no money, no license, and six more days in Las Vegas. This could have been prevented had he had a fanny pack on. Of course the next day he used it…to keep mints and small change in.
If you are getting ready for the casino make certain that you pack several “necessary” items. If you take medication to have 2 days worth in your fanny pack. One day tends to roll into another in Las Vegas. If you don’t need it, it will be available the next time you are out. Also, take a small container with aspirin and antacids. The buffets and the noise can make both of these valuable items. I tend to be a food person. Not that I eat all the time, I do but don’t weigh that much, but I need to have extra food on me, just in case. I always carry candy in my fanny pack. I recommend that you don’t carry chocolate since Las Vegas is hot and the fanny pack will be against your body so it will be twice as hot. I do recommend mints, hard candies, and if there is room, an apple. The casinos are dry no matter what part of the country you are in, and the moisture will help your mouth and throat. Breath gum is always great to have along.
Keep 1/2 your money for the day in one section and if you have a zip-up section next to your body, keep all the rest of your funds there. If you win, transfer half to the permanent fund next to you and continue to play on the win. I don’t recommend that you take an ATM card or credit card with you, but if you do, keep it in one of those plastic business card holders and put your driver’s license on the other side. If you don’t have one, ask around. They usually come in every box of business cards that are ordered. Keep that in the most secure place inside your fanny pack. Keep it in a zipped area on the inside.
If you are a smoker carry an extra package of cigarettes with you. If you have to buy them in a casino, they will cost as much as three packs in the real world. Also if you are going to use coupons, keep them in a plain envelope in the middle of the fanny pack. Chapstick and touch up make can go in, but keep it to a minimum. At the end of the day, I would rather have an apple in my fanny pack to munch on, than put on lipstick. Women also should keep a mini pad as a just in case, in theirs.
Two last items that are excellent to have along are the towelettes for clothing stain removal and hand towelettes. Both of these are tiny packets and fit comfortably in the pouch.
Want to beat the desert heat of the Las Vegas desert? Want a great deal on your room at your favorite casino or great offers at an online casino? For this, you have 카지노 사이트 가입 쿠폰that is one of the best casino service full of lucrative offers and deals.
With the recession in full swing this Spring, empty Las Vegas casinos and hotels are offering incredible deals and discounts to get you to visit Sin City. My favorite website for hotel deals in Vegas is www.bestofvegas.com. I was able to find a room for $55 a night right on the strip.
When I stay in Las Vegas in the Spring, I enjoy walking the Strip and enjoying the nightlife in the casinos. I would suggest finding a hotel near the middle of the Strip so every casino is within reasonable walking distance. Avoid staying in hotels near the end of the Strip if you enjoy walking. However, hotels not on the Strip offer steeper discounts and better deals. Most hotels far away from the strip offer a courtesy shuttle to the strip. To take advantage of certain travel deals, book your stay in multiple hotels. Hotels in Las Vegas are so close together, it is usually not a hassle to move hotels during the middle of the week. I’ve saved over $300 in one week by staying at two different hotels. For a map of the hotel, locations visit www.maps.google.com to find where your hotel is in relation to others. I find it useful to print a map out before I go so I always know where I am on the Strip.
If you are a Las Vegas veteran, and you have seen all the shows and exhibits in Las Vegas, do what the locals do for fun. Vegas is full of interesting events and attractions. With tourism rates down for Las Vegas, city officials are planning new and exciting events to attract locals back to the strip. I always visit www.reviewjournal.com before visiting Las Vegas. The locals visit this site to see what is happening in the neighborhood. I might be going to Las Vegas sooner than I thought, an Ultimate Fighting Championship, or UFC for short, the event is happening soon. I can’t wait to go!
Spring of 2009 may be the opportunity of a lifetime to stay in the nicest casinos at rock bottom prices. Make sure you spend time planning your trip so you will make the most of your time while you are there. If you are not a casino fan, The Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, the Las Vegas Desert offer recreational activities galore. Remember to go in the Spring though, Las Vegas temperatures can easily reach 115 degrees in the Summer. Bring your camera, and get your bags packed.
Becoming Bond is no small feat. 32 years after the initial installment, the character has had too few necessary and worthwhile improvements. Sure, his gadgets have gotten better, his babes have gotten hotter, but, in the grand scheme of things, his stories have simply gotten worse. From the start, Sean Connery epitomized the kind of rugged, icy, ruthlessness we all wanted in our super-spy. Connery was, the hairy Bond, as good with the ladies as he was with the garrote. Then came George Lazenby – or the film geek’s favorite. Lazenby was as trite as this movie’s premise and was quickly forgotten.
Next came the clown, or Roger Moore. Nothing against Moore, he was a fine Bond and starred in some of the best in the series, but he always came off as a little silly and buffoonish. After him came Timothy Dalton, better known as the mistake. Although, it is noteworthy, when talking about our current installment, that Dalton’s plots were set very much within the context of, “the real world.” Sadly, Dalton was just not capable of pulling off the many aspects of Bond. Finally, there was Pierce Brosnan, the most sophisticated of all the Bonds. His performances typically stole the show, and up to this point, Brosnan was the superior of all his predecessors and the closest equivalent to Connery. Unfortunately, his films soon became overwhelmed with ridiculous gadgetry, over-the-top villains and double entendres that would make Joel Schumacher blush. Eventually, with everything overloading the franchise, the roof, inevitably, caved in.
With Casino Royale, all of the above hindrances, have become things of the past and the oftentimes woeful inclusion of them, is now a breath of exclusionary fresh air. Recasting the role with Daniel Craig, (Layer Cake) as the first blonde (is that important?) Bond, brilliantly and subtly, forecasts the changes in store for fans and non-fans alike. This time around, 007 is the new kid on the block, M isn’t too sure of him, Money Penny and Q are nowhere to be seen and thankfully, he’s more of a sourpuss than a cheeky sex-machine. Finally, it feels like Bond is no longer written by 14-year-olds competing with Austin Powers. Here, director Martin Campbell, returning to Bond after having done Brosnan’s inaugural run with Goldeneye answers the task of recreating Bond, without redesigning the character.
Here, he is a roguish brute whose confidence in himself has everyone else filling up with doubt. Craig’s performance is nothing short of legendary. He is everything from a homage to Connery to literary perfection found on celluloid. His resemblance to Ian Fleming’s vision is spot on and, it seems, that was no mistake. In one of the many thrilling and action-packed scenes in the film, Craig’s Bond, while pursuing a mercenary bomber through a construction site, simply barrels through a wall instead of going up or around. To paraphrase the villain, Le Chiffre, (Mads Mikkelsen) James Bond, takes very good care of his body. This time around, Bond is a real man. He not only bleeds when hit, but he is conflicted. Conflicted about his past, his present and his future. He feels, he loves and he cares. He is capable of sitting in the shower with a shell-shocked Vesper Lynn and truly attempting to comfort her. That, is the Bond people have been waiting to see; a Bond, we should all aspire to be.
Taking the plot directly from the novel by the same name, was the perfect way to reboot the character. No need to re-imagine him, no need to revamp him. Bond simply needs to be returned to the world…uh, well, Bond! In Casino Royale, the main action takes place at the poker table, where the stakes are the funding of international terrorists. Simple enough, which is really what this movie is all about. Simple enough and easy does it. This time around, Bond is outfitted with his cunning, his wit and the sultry Vesper Lynd (Eva Green). Written by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, who each have previous Bond credits, which both help and hinders the credibility of the film’s screenplay; as well as, Paul Haggis, writer of the atrocious Academy Award-winning Crash. Despite the potentially disastrous effects of these negative wordsmiths, the screenplay is not only capable, but it fills the characters with a delightfully complex reality that renews and reinvigorates the franchise. All this made casinos quite popular among Bond fans, and there were tons of players that were looking for online casinos. This is where daytoto.com comes to the rescue, you get a credible online casino experience that you can enjoy and learn more about different card games and get a bond like experience online.
Action-packed, thrilling and intelligent. Casino Royale, not only ushers in a new and powerful era of Bond but also gives the holiday season one of its best films in years. Despite the 144 min. runtime, the film delivers what is, quite possibly, the most complete and compelling Bond story, ever. Craig is Bond. Casino Royale is the definitive film in the series and Bond has simply never been better.
Making your way through the World Series of Poker No Limit Texas Hold’em tournament is no easy task. You have to out last hundreds, if not thousands to gain a seat at the Final Table. Once there, you need to play against the world’s best players in order to win the prize.
With 40 years of history behind it, the World Series of Poker No Limit Texas Hold’em Final Table has seen some of the best players of all time. Out of all of those games, which ones would have been the hardest to win?
- Amarillo Slim Wins in 1972
Players: Thomas “Amarillo Slim” Preston, Walter “Puggy” Pearson, Doyle Brunson, Crandall Addington, Jack Straus, Johnny Moss, Roger Van Ausdall, Jimmy Casella
The first ever World Series of Poker was held in 1971. The main event had only six contestants (far from the thousands of the past few years) and had only a $5,000 buy-in.
The game expanded in 1972 with a slightly altered format. Eight players now competed on a $5,000 buy-in (which was matched by Benny Binion for a total of $10,000 per player).
What gets this tournament onto the list of top Final Tables of all time was the cast of characters taking part. Five of the players went on to win the WSOP No Limit Texas Hold’em Tournament at some point, and six of them were inducted into the poker hall of fame. This Final Table makes the list based on pedigree, because only the best of the best could even gain a seat at this table.
- Juan Carlos Mortensen Makes Dewey Tomko a 2-time runner-up in 2001
Players: Juan Carlos Mortensen, Dewey Tomko, Stan Schrier, Phil Gordon, Phil Hellmuth, Mike Matusow, Henry Nowakowski, Steve Riehle, John Inashima
As the World Series of Poker has expanded, gaining an elusive seat at the Final Table of the No Limit Texas Hold’Em tournament has gotten harder and harder. The 2001 tournament is a perfect example of the amount of skill the game takes, as Dewey Tomko and Phil Hellmuth both made their second trips to the Final Table.
Only one tournament since has had two returning players compete at the Final Table, but the skill on display pales in comparion to Tomko and Hellmuth, who both hold places in the Poker Hall of Fame. If that wasn’t enough, both Tomko and Hellmuth ended up losing the tournament to Juan Carlos Mortensen. Even with great skill and pedigree, this table was not going to be easy to win for anyone.
- Bill Smith Drinks His Way to Victory in 1985
Players: Bill Smith, T. J. Cloutier, Berry Johnston, Scott Mayfield, Hamid Dastmalchi, Jesse Alto
Like the 1972 tournament, the 1985 World Series of Poker Main Event saw the who’s who of the poker world compete for the title of World Champion. The 1985 is more notable for the fact that 140 players competed at the tournament, and the six men left standing were almost all legends of the sport.
According to T. J. Cloutier, 1985 tournament winner Bill Smith needed to have a healthy dose of alcohol in his system to play well. With so many big name players, winning would not be easy, but Bill Smith seems to have hit that drunken sweet spot in order to take home the prize.
- Phil Hellmuth Prevents a Three-Peat in 1989
Players: Phil Hellmuth, Johnny Chan, Don Zewin, Steve Lott, Lyle Berman, Noel Furlong
Most of the tournaments on this list are here because of an impressive laundry list of players. This one is a little different.
Coming off of two consecutive WSOP No Limit Texas Hold’em championships in 1987 and 1988, Johnny Chan looked like he could be the first player to ever win three tournaments in a row when he reached the Final Table. No other players still playing had reached that level before.
When it came down to only two men left (those being Johnny Chan and the 24-year-old Phil Hellmuth) the odds seemed to favor Chan. In a shocking upset Phil Hellmuth managed to eliminate Johnny Chan from the tournament, becoming the youngest winner in the history of the World Series of Poker.
- A Chip and a Chair
Players: Jack Straus, Dewey Tomko, Berry Johnston, Doyle Brunson, A. J. Myers, Dody Roach
Like most of the early World Series of Poker tournaments, the 1982 edition saw mostly poker legends reach the Final Table for a contest of unparalleled skill. The 1982 tournament was the best Final Table of all time for only one man, though: Jack Straus.
Jack Straus was already a notable name in the poker world long before this tournament, having previously reached the 1972 WSOP No Limit Texas Hold ‘Em Final Table. For the 1982 tournament, however, Straus was there on pure luck after being left with only a single chip (accidentally, it would seem).
Against all odds, Jack Straus fought back and eventually defeated Dewey Tomko in heads up play to take home the championship. That miraculous comeback gave rise to the poker wisdom that if you have “a chip and a chair” then you have a chance to win.
I did not grow up around gambling, nor did I really know what gambling was all about until I married my husband.
He had been to a few casinos, exposed to this type of fun.
Our first outing to a casino was mind boggling, as there were so many machines to pick from.
He so generously gave me a twenty, instructing me to make it last.
“Really… I am not going to blow this entire twenty in one sitting. I am much thriftier than that!” I exclaimed.
Feeling confident, I sat down at the Texas Tea machine as I was from Texas so I felt a common bond with this machine.
I slipped my twenty in the slot and watched the machine light up like a Christmas tree.
I looked at the numbers and did not know what I was to do but I did not want to seem like a green horn.
I then decided I would bet the highest number and the most lines I could get.
Surely…this would mean I would win some money.
Within five pulls of the one arm bandit, suddenly the machine told me I was out of money.
Surely this could not be!
I was playing on a penny machine for goodness sakes.
Do you have any idea how many pennies are in a twenty-dollar bill?
Just about that time my husband did a walk by…
“So…how’s it going?” he asked with a smirk on his face.
I do think he had been spying on me and watching me from a far.
“Well, it appears as if this machine is broken. It has taken my whole twenty dollar bill,” I exclaimed, feeling a bit irritated.
My husband reached into his pocket, handing me another twenty.
“Here honey, give it another try,” he said sweetly.
Placing the twenty in my purse, I knew I did not want him watching me so I told him I was going to find a better machine.
We departed ways until I came upon another penny machine.
This time, I watched a woman play for at least twenty minutes on the same machine.
How talented she was I thought.
It appeared as if this machine worked so much better than the Texas Tea machine that had gobbled up my twenty in a matter of seconds.
She looked at me and smiled, “Uh honey…I am going to be on this one for a while, no need to covet this one.”
I felt so silly, as I was not coveting! How dare her say I was coveting her machine! I only wanted to learn her ways.
This gambling was becoming increasingly irritating and I was not finding any enjoyment at all.
I finally sat at the Flying Pigs penny machine and decided to give it my whole twenty. I did not care if I won or lost at this point, I was going to play this game with all my heart.
Throwing caution to the wind, I placed my twenty in the slot and played max bet.
The lights lit up and the pigs started dancing off the machine. People gathered around me, as I had won the big one!
I made my way over to my husband who had once more reached into his pocket…
“So how’s it going?” He asked.
With a sad face, I told him I was not good at this gambling stuff and it would only be when pigs fly that I will ever see one cent.
Feeling sorry for me, he handed me another twenty.
I happily placed the twenty in my purse and made my way to the Flying Pig machine.
Surely…I will see Pigs Fly once more!
I was playing Texas Hold ‘Em from seat #8. The table was full. At the opposite end of the table in seat #3 was a slender, attractive blonde lady. Next to her in seat #2 was a robust good looking middle-aged man and to his right in seat #1 was a crusty looking, sort of timid old black man with a cane that peered carefully at his cards before he reacted or bet. On her left side in seat #4 was a gray bearded fellow that played rather flamboyantly.
“Did you know” she asked, “that Bill Clinton was from Arkansas?”
Gray beard responded. “Yep. And, so am I.”
“Really. That’s where I’m from.” She sort of gushed. “Did you know they used to have signs up when you came into the state that proclaimed it to be ‘The Birthplace of Bill Clinton’ and that they took the signs down when he got into that mess?”
The old black man responded. “I read that. I’m from Arkansas, too, and that really made me unhappy. We elected him, warts and all, and even if he got into trouble, he is still ours.”
“I’m beginning to feel outnumbered” said the robust guy. “All these Arkansas people around me.”
The blonde sort of ignored him. “Well,” she said. “I’m glad Romney’s running. He’s going to win in a landslide and then maybe the country can get back on track. Can I get another drink?”
“What are you drinking?” the gray beard asked.
She smiled. “It’s called a ‘Leg Spreader’.”
There was a silence at the table. Finally, the robust player reacted. “What’s it got in it?” he asked.
“I don’t know. It just tastes good.”
“You ought to have a couple more of them, then,” he told her. “Do they work?”
“Ha! Ha! Ha!,” she said and turned to the gray beard. “Where bout’s in Arkansas you from?”
“A little town just west of Little Rock. What makes you think Romney’s going to win so easy?”
“He’s the best man. He’s got all that money and he’s spendin’ it like crazy. That’ll get him elected. But, mainly, he’s the best man.”
The game went on for a few minutes. The cocktail waitress brought some drinks. The blonde had something pink to drink. “What do you do over there?” she asked gray beard.
“Nothing much anymore,” he answered. “Sometimes I help out the sheriff if he gets a lot of notices and stuff to serve.”
“Are you a deputy?” she asked.
“Not really,” he responded. “Just help out sometimes.”
“Do you carry a gun, and everything?”
“Oh, yeah. I’ve got a weapons permit and can carry it most everywhere.”
Robust man spoke up. “In Nebraska, you couldn’t wear it into a courthouse or any other government buildings.”
“Same way in Arkansas,” he said. He pulled out his wallet and dug through it. “Here’s the permit to own it and here’s the one to carry it concealed.”
The dealer spoke up. “You can’t carry one into the casinos here, either.”
“Right,” said graybeard.
The blonde stirred her drink and then sipped at it. “Somebody ought to use one on some of these politicians.”
“That’d be pretty harsh,” said the robust man.
The old black man stirred. He looked at his cards and then looked at the middle of the table. “I gave Obama $40,000,” he said.
Silence again descended on the table. Suddenly the blonde blurted out “YOU DID WHAT?”
He repeated himself. “I gave Obama $40,000”.
“What in the world did you do that for? Do you mean you just gave him that much money? Why would a person do that?”
“I figured he could use it in the campaign,” said the old man.
The blonde was seething by this time. “You sure you don’t have that gun on you?” she asked gray beard. She drained her drink. She didn’t have a lot of chips left but she grabbed up what she had and stomped off.
“That’s too bad,” said the robust man. “I kind of liked sittin’ next to her.”
In contrast to everything else you can find on-line about TheTexas Holdem tournaments, there seems to be one category rarely mentioned, yet seen in almost every game. It’s a player who decides to “bully” the tournament. You know, the guy who starts raising every hand?
A “Bully” is basically a poker player who places large bets or raises constantly in an effort to either run as many eligible players out of a hand, or go “head’s up” with another opponent, trying to increase his odds of winning. Going “head’s up” is another term meaning that an opponent is playing only one other player. This term is mainly used when a player goes all-in and is called by another player. A bully will play every hand with the intention of over betting, scaring the other player out of continuing to play. Sounds like a sure-fire plan. Here’s where this game play usually back fires and why bullies rarely win. A bully is often noticed early in a tournament, making outrageous raises on small blinds, (bets) resulting in almost everyone folding their hands.
Once the table of players get the notion that there is a bully playing on their table, (and it doesn’t take long to catch this type of playing), evry player on that table will set the bully up and the bully will get called on a bad hand he just bet on. For more experienced players, there will also be more than one who will call out a bully, making the odds of his hand winning, greatly improvised.
In the great world of playing tournaments for Texas Holdem, there is a saying. “Respect a bet”. Not only does a bully disregard this important lesson, but this is where the other players start disrespecting his bet, often running the bully out of the game.
The attitude around the table once a bully starts, changes immediately, and the other players will go on the defense, not only calling out on his bets and raises, but also reraising. His chances of winning the tournament greatly reduces and some of the other players will play hands they generally won’t play. The other players will also take a greater risk at bluffing a bully also, trying reverse psychology.
On a personal note
On a personal note, I have played hundreds of tournaments, if not thousands, and only seen a bully win twice. These were also small tournaments, where the pay-out was less than $100.00 and the bully usually ended up going out first during the next tournament. This is not to say that this technique doesn’t work, It just doesn’t justify itself into winning. It’s basically the worse technique to use and rarest way to actually win.
As the old saying goes; Slow and steady wins the race”.
I am not a good poker player but I am addicted to watching the World Series of Poker, High Stakes Poker and Poker After Dark. I look forward to the antics as well as the serious, intelligent tactics employed by card players who have become television idols over the past decade.
I have to say that Daniel Negreanu is my favorite player. “Kid Poker” is always happy when he is playing and likes to joke around. He is not afraid to stay in the game when he is dealt a 5-2 off suit. He has an uncanny ability to discern which cards another player holds. He can often be seen eating his favorite Bok Choy at the table. Daniel has won four World Series Of Poker bracelets and has been able to make a comfortable living playing poker. He was named Player of the Year in 2004. Daniel is originally from Toronto, Ontario and is married to an Asian girl. They live in Las Vegas where Daniel has taken up golf and is as enthusiastic about his golf game as he is about his poker playing. Daniel is fun to watch and a great favorite of many poker fans.
Jennifer Harman is highly respected in the poker world and is the only woman to hold two World Series of Poker bracelets. Jennifer has suffered from kidney disease for many years and has had two kidney transplants, the last one being in 2004. Since that time, she has been healthy and without further incidents. Jennifer is married to Marco Traniello, who is a professional poker player as well. They have twin boys. She and Daniel Negreanu are very close friends even though they compete against each other in high stakes games. Some players may judge that Jennifer is an inferior player just because she is a woman, but her winning record proves them wrong.
I like Phil Ivey because he is the player with the proverbial poker face. You never know what Phil is thinking. He is an extremely aggressive player and he instills fear in the other players at his table. He is highly focused on the game when he plays. He likes to play the cash games but is also very successful in the tournaments. He has at least seven World Series of Poker bracelets and his poker winnings have exceeded 13 million dollars. Phil resides in Las Vegas with his wife, Luciaetta. Phil is very well liked by other players who respect his ability and his quiet, likeable personality. I like watching Phil make the right decision after reflecting on whether to stay or to fold. He is an intelligent player.
I include Phil Helmuth in this group because it is so much fun to watch him lose. He is the player we love to hate. He is insulting to the other players, brags about his accomplishments, whines when he loses and is generally the “Poker Brat” that he has been dubbed. He is unkind to lesser known players but is somewhat inhibited by star players. He will seldom compliment another player. He is married to a psychiatrist who, people say, probably gets a lot of practice analyzing her husband. Having said that, Phil has earned eleven bracelets, more than any other player. He won his first Texas Hold ‘Em Championship when he was 24 years old, the youngest player ever to win up to that time.
Mike “The Mouth” Matusow is another player who is fun to watch. It is not possible for me to dislike Mike. He takes a great deal of ribbing from other players but can give it back as well. He is accused of being self-destructive, not very bright, and of having meltdowns and causing disturbances although a lot of this behavior is not captured on television. Although he seems to be his own worst enemy, he has managed to win three World Series of Poker bracelets and is a favorite of poker fans, including myself.
Annie Duke manages to have a prosperous career in poker while caring for her four children which is an accomplishment in itself. Her brother Howard Lederer is also a successful poker player and taught Annie how to play. Annie won her first World Series of Poker bracelet in 2004. She also won the first prize of two million dollars at the ESPN World Series of Poker Tournament of Champions Invitational in 2004. Annie tutored actor Ben Affleck in poker, after which he won a $365,000 first prize at the California State Poker Championship tournament at the Commerce Casino. Even Phil Helmuth was heard to say that Annie is the best female poker player in the world today. High praise! You may be familiar with Annie through her appearance on the 2009 edition of Donald Trump’s Celebrity Apprentice where she came in second to winner Joan Rivers.
Barry Greenstein has earned the nickname of “the Robin Hood of Poker” because for a long time he donated his entire poker winnngs to the charity “Children, Incorporated.” His total winnings have exceeded seven million dollars. I have seen Barry chiefly on High Stakes Poker and Poker After Dark, but he also enters the buy-in tournament games. He holds three World Series of Poker bracelets. Barry has a Ph.D. in Mathematics which he recently completed by defending his dissertation. Barry retired at the age of 36 from developing software for Symantec’s Norton Anti-Virus Program. He is now a full-time professional poker player. His first break in poker came in 2003 when he won one million dollars for finishing first in Larry Flynt’s 7 Card Stud Event at the Hustler Casino. Barry has published a book on poker entitled “Ace on the River” which he autographs and gives to any opponent who knocks him out of a poker game. I admire Barry’s intelligence, his philanthropy and his demeanor at the poker table.
I never cease to be entertained by watching the players following a course which undoubtedly has held them up to ridicule from the conservative sector of humanity. They have managed to give Poker a good name instead of the derisive scorn attached to the game at a time when it was illegal and subject to back-room raids by the police. I applaud them for their efforts.
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