Monday, January 16, 2006

A Very Belated AC Trip Report (Part One)

Well, it has been quite a while since I posted. Yes, I am still alive. I returned home from AC just before the New Year with a 103° fever. It took a few days to get better. Then the procrastination set in. By the time I realized what was really holding me back from posting, it was time to go to St. Lucia. So, I have quite a lot to talk about. Rather than post one huge post, I will break it up a bit. Today, I will start with my AC trip.

When I booked the trip, Harrah’s told me that the first two nights would be free, and the last would be at the casino rate ($79, not bad.) When I arrived, they gave me a suite and comped all three nights up front. Did they know something I didn’t? It turns out they did. I had a horrible run of luck in the casino. Yeah, I know casino games are not a +EV situation.

In the past my philosophy was something like this: my play is –EV, but I get 50-60% back of that –EV in comps. The rest of the EV I can chalk up to entertainment value. But I have changed my mind about that. Here are my reasons:

  • Losing 10 hands in a row of pai gow at $100 a pop is not entertaining.
  • Losing an equal amount in craps is not entertaining.
  • Losing a greater amount in black jack is not entertaining.
  • Poker is +EV for me and my casino loses are eating into my poker profits.
  • The casino losses put me on tilt in a way that poker never can.
  • I can afford to pay for the stuff I like that is otherwise comped.

Before you decide that I really went off the deep end, please understand that I have had several trips in the last few years where I have won as much as I lost here. I think my overall analysis is correct, but I am done with casino games for at least a year. Poker is profitable. Why even bother comp whoring?

The main thing that was holding me back from posting is that I got slaughtered. When I took some time to think about it, my casino losses seemed to blur together with my poker action. The reality is that I lost about $1400 in poker. Not a disaster by my standards. My last live outings were +$1800, +$2800, and +$400. I lost the money in two key hands, one of which I made a small mistake. But I am getting ahead of myself. The point is that I let the money bother me.

After much ado, here is the poker action at Harrah’s: They only spread 3/6 limit and 1/2 NL. I sit at 3/6 while waiting for the 1/2 NL. Every flop is 4 or 5 way, usually un-raised. I wait a couple of rounds for cards. Nothing doing. I play 67 suited in early position, confident of getting the pot odds I need. Sure enough, there are 5 limpers behind me. The flop comes 667. I get paid. Next hand I pick up QQ. The flop comes QJ7, rainbow. I get paid by AJ. One really fun thing I watched while I was folding most of my hands: The guy across from me had a hillllllarious tell: every time he had a big hand, he tried to bet 6 or 12 on the flop. This is in a 3/6 game. Good times. I get a seat in the 1/2 NL game. So I cash out for a $60 profit.

No big or memorable hands happened in the 1/2 NL game, but I managed to double it on some small moves and one TPTK vs. TPSK hand in about an hour. It was just too easy. This day, I was not in the mood for fishing; I was in the mood for big game hunting. I cash out for another $200 profit and head over to the Borgata.

Tomorrow: The Hunt
Later this week: Playing in NYC, poker in St. Lucia and a really great picture of SoxLover


Blogger Veneno said...

The question is, did you make your diamond status with Harrahs?

They do sucker you in with the comps. My favorite is Rio in Las Vegas.


7:40 AM  
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