Monday, January 21, 2008

First Entry Ever

So I decided to try to start keeping a consistent blog. I can't decide if that's cool or mildly retarded. Partially with regular life stuff, and partially a poker journal as well. A bunch of well-known guys like Eric "Rizen" Lynch, Kevin "Bel0wab0ve" Saul, and Daniel Negreanu do it. I've read their blogs on and off sometimes, so I guess I'm just trying to be cool like them.

Even though most people who will be reading this already know me pretty well, I'll put up a brief background of my life if anyone new starts to follow the page. Who knows, you might learn something new about me too.

I've lived in Vernon since as long as I can remember and attended public schools until I was in eighth grade, when we decided that East Catholic High School in Manchester would be best for me. I was reluctant at first, but I didn't have much say in the matter, so ECHS it was. It turned out alright though. Throughout high school and into college for a bit, I worked at a home goods store not far from my house. I worked there for about two and a half years.

East was a college preparatory high school. Thus there was an emphasis on further education. The students who didn't continue on to at least community college were few and far between, and the ones who didn't were sort of looked down upon. I don't mean to give the impression that at the time, I didn't want to go to college, because I did. However the environment I went to high school in certainly didn't hurt in my decision to continue with my education.

I went on to Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven, moving into my dorm room in September of 2005. Some aspects of campus life were cool, such as having all of your friends close by, and the fact that there was always a party in walking distance on the weekends. But I quickly grew sick of the community bathrooms, cafeteria food, and the fact that I still didn't have a car, since I totaled my old one junior year of high school. So after freshman year, I decided to take out a loan, buy my mom's 2003 Accord, live at home, and commute three days a week to Southern. My dad hooked me up with a job at his office to help pay all of my newly acquired bills.

This plan didn't work out so well. I had a horrible semester at Southern, working part time and going to school full time, miles from where I lived. It made for a lot of driving and a lot of stress. On top of this I was having trouble dealing with a friend who I had stopped seeing since moving off campus. All of this added up to pretty much the most disastrous semester possible. I technically was not allowed to return as a full time student, but I decided that there was no point in going to Southern at all anymore anyways. I was going to attend Manchester Community College part time, and actually went to a few classes. But after some thought my parents and I decided that we shouldn't pay for school if I didn't want to be there and wasn't going to give it my best, which I honestly hadn't done since I was ten. So I continued to work at Discover Re Insurance in Farmington with my dad every day, not really knowing where my life was going to go next. Money was tight for me, and I wasn't sure if there was room for advancement at the job I was working at, or if that was even what I wanted to do. I had no idea if and when I would return to school. That's a pretty bad feeling, when you see your life going nowhere.

All along I had been playing poker online. Sometimes just for play money, and other times, freerolls and micro stakes. They have this deal on some sites where if you run your 1,000 starting play chips up to over 1 million, you can actually sell 1 million chips for $10 in real money! So I did that a few times, and other times I received small transfers from a friend who would occasionally put money on. Each time I went broke. One night I got $5 from my friend Matt. I played a $4.40 180 player tournament, and came in sixth, winning $36. From there I was able to work my way up to about $60 or so. But low and behold, I was again on the brink of busting again, being down to my last $2. I signed up for a $2 tournament with over 1,000 players. I came in first place, winning over $450. That was such a great feeling, and I haven't looked back since. My bankroll management skills are much more conservative now, which is the sole reason I have avoided busting again.

Finally one Thursday night, in the middle of June, I played six of my regular tournaments and had my best night ever. I made it in the money in all six tournaments, and won not one but two of them! One of my wins was a $20 180 player tournament, where I won $1080. The second was the 8:00 25k guarantee. It's a $27.50 ($25 buy-in, $2.50 entry fee). That tournament had 1136 entrants, and I scored about $6200 for that. Overall on the night, I won about $7500. Prior to that, I had never had more than maybe $1500 to my name and my biggest win was for about $750, so you can imagine my excitement. It seriously felt like I was a millionaire. To this day, that night is the best one I've ever had. My dad came downstairs at about 3 A.M. after I had finished up the second win, and told me I needed to go to bed, since I had work in about four hours. I told him I had just won $8,000 and wasn't going to work the next day. He seemed disappointed in me, since he knew that the thought of playing poker for a living had crossed my mind, and he didn't approve. He didn't consider gambling a good enough form of consistent income. I can't really blame him, since I had only been playing online for two months.

I didn't go into Discover Re that Friday, or any day thereafter. I called one of my bosses at the time, to tell him the news. He was excited for me, since he had been a family friend for years before I had started to work at Discover Re, and is a poker player himself. Since then, I have made my living playing poker on PokerStars. I've made over $35,000 so far. I got my own apartment in August of 2007, and still live there now. My dad has been accepting of my decision not to work or go to school since then. I've been consistent for several months now, and since I'm doing it on my own, not under his roof, he has been supportive.

So that's my story. I rambled on there a bit more than I had planned. Oh well. So from here on out, I think I'm going to give a life update, and a poker update. I'll include my key cashes on the day, and also some analysis on some interesting hands. Also, since I've been working on building an enormous iTunes library, I'll keep you updated on what artists I've added.

So today I woke up around noon. I watched my Dr. Phil and Price Is Right recordings like I do every day. DVR is easily the greatest invention ever. It's only an extra $10 a month, and you get HDTV, pause and rewind live TV, and you can record any show you want. I love it. I get made fun of a lot for watching Dr. Phil religiously, but I don't care. He's extremely intelligent and gives good marriage and parenting advice, which at some point, will be the next step in my life. Not any time soon though, don't worry. ; )

After that I did some hard core cleaning. I did the dishes and laundry, which reminds me I have to get stuff out of the dryer before I go to bed. It always takes me all day to do laundry because I have to travel all the way across the complex to the laundry room, and I'm a bit lazy. Also, there was bottles and cans all over my kitchen from Friday night. Normally when I have a party, I clean up the place promptly the next day, because I can't stand living in filth. But Friday was more of a get-together, only about seven people. I didn't throw out the bottles because my mom wants to save them for some fund raiser. I can't really see how it would be worth it at five cents a bottle, but whatever, I'll keep her dream alive. So I bagged those up and left them on the back porch behind the garbage can.

I did some grocery shopping as well, where I ran into my Aunt Lori, Uncle Dan, and my two cousins Sam and Rachel, who informed me that they were and 3rd and 5th grade respectively. News to me. After I put the groceries away, I went home for dinner with my dad and brother. My sister was called into work so they needed help eating all the pot roast. No problem, since I was taking the day off from poker.

Afterwards, my dad came over so we could make a trade. I wanted to borrow the carpet cleaner, since the rug is getting kind of stained from some of the parties. He wanted to use my poker chips for the game he plays with some of his new friends, which he tells me is pretty soft. :D He crushed his first time, and decided to go easy on them the next time because he felt bad I guess. Lacks the killer instinct, but I'm proud of the pwnage. Anyways, I learned you have to hook up the carpet cleaner to the sink faucet. Since my faucet is different than his, we didn't have the necessary screw or whatever to hook it up. So I didn't get to clean my carpet like I wanted. He is going to try and find more and we'll try it again another time.

Tomorrow should hopefully be a standard day. My goals will be to get up, watch my shows, get some time in at the gym, and then come home and play some poker. I didn't get to the gym today. I didn't feel bad because I feel like I had a pretty productive day, with all the chores I did, and getting this thing started. I only go to the gym to sweat a little and to avoid feeling lazy and useless. Also American Idol is on tomorrow night, which I will watch every episode of. Wednesday my basketball team has practice, so I won't be playing a tournament schedule. I'll tell you more about that whole thing later on.

I didn't do too much on the poker scene today. I played a little heads up after my dad left. I think I played five matches. Either way, it was on odd number, and I won one more than I lost. I was happy to win the last match because it means I had a winning day, which even though it wasn't much, makes me feel better. Plus the guy was a total donk. He was raising way too many hands on his button once the blinds hit 50-100, and I was just waiting for a better than average to shove with. So with 950 in chips, he makes it 300, and I had Kh8h. I shoved, and he called instantly with 9c7c. The flop was 10 8 5 and the turn was a J, clinching the hand for him. I was now down about 2 to 1. I managed to double with QQ vs K 10, won a few more hands, and then finally put him away with K 10 vs A 6 on a 10 6 5 flop. Pretty uneventful day, but it's hard for me to go a full day without at least playing a little. Partially because it's my livelihood, partially because I'm a degen, partially because there's not much better to do. So that wrapped it up for the day, and now I'm going to go get my laundry, and watch my friend in the 50k until he busts (or hopefully wins). Tomorrow I want to get in a high volume MTT (Multi-table tournament) schedule, so hopefully I'll have some good scores/interesting hands to share with you all.

Until then,


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