Saturday, December 8, 2012


In my room, heating up soups, starved to death. Signed up for a $25 don sng on lock whenever it hurry up and fills, and put the other $16 in play on a NL holdem table. (too much for PLO since im less familiar with that game and id have had to wait longer for a seat probably). A little bit on tilt because i finally had that long overdue loss.

yeah i was at $1985 when i went to bed last night, and was really wanting that last $15 so i could go and make a blog post about how glad i was to finally be back over $2000 and how much less worried id be. Slept the wrong hours, and woke up a little after 6am. (would rather be waking up about 1-2am) so i could have it all night without many people in the casino.

The shoe was getting to be somewhat in my favor, and id been slowly raising my bets, and wasnt winning. i must admit, ive been lucky to be up so much lately. why? because when i was behind, i was often betting the amount i was behind split up between 3 to 5 spots (so as not to bet too much a spot) on the first hand of a new shoe when i knew the count would be flat out of fear the count would be negative on all the rest of the hands possibly. so lets say i ended the previous shoe down $38. id bet like 3 hands of $8 and 2 hands of $7 to total $38 and to not bet too much per hand. if i won on all, id be no longer down from my high water mark. I didnt follow this entirely, just somewhat and made adjustments based on various things. i get tired a lot of just having to sit and wait all the time flat betting $1 one spot almost the entire shoe. and sometimes when im up and want to leave, i feel like i cant because the count is too good, then i give back most of the win. or sometimes greatly increase the win. yes, theres variance.

a poker player can always quit with a win without feeling like a dummy for leaving. a BJ pro always feels like its foolish to quit in the middle of a shoe with a good count, and that no matter what he is winning or losing, he is forced to stay and keep playing until the count turns negative. it just dont seem to make any sense to quit a game while the deck is favoring the player instead of the house.

so thats why, with a count of plus 8, and having just lost $95 + one $19 double down on 5 spots, I couldnt just get up and leave after losing that hand, and being down $203. finished out the shoe, still betting too much, but not that much, and 2 more shoes, til i finally got one starting off with a bad count, and then FINALLY left stuck $377 and quite pissed. new roll is barely $1600. Only that one time did i ever bet with $19 bets or more per hand, but i did have some $10 and up bets on other hands at times. am thinking 1% is too high to bet really, but i still remember being told earlier my spread wasnt wide enough to beat the game. am now wondering if my spread is too wide, and what is the lowest spread thats still wide enough, but not too wide?

i have got to quit raising my bets on flat counts of new shoes just because im behind and feel it might be many many shoes before a deck finally has a plus count, but im playing the same way i played to get my roll back to $1900 from $1100. thats why i said, i was just lucky earlier. sure im not overbetting my edge, but im raising the bets before i should just because it might be the ONLY hand for many shoes without a negative count.

i still think i could win if i changed my betting patterns, (to wait longer to make the larger sized bets) but i fear it would add even more variance, be alot more boring, and make it take much longer to earn my room comps. and i still wish a professional counter would sit here with me and give me advice. also im wondering if maybe i shouldve just gone back into vegas, and played at the suncoast.


  1. the ONLY good news i have to report is remember that final $5 on lock from last night? i finally WON a $25 sng. and im now up to $77 on lock poker. something really funny is going on though, and i think something shady is going on. took over 20 minutes to pay me AFTER i won the $25 sng. and im wondering if it was because AFTER the sng was over (when chat is finally allowed) i typed in the chat box that it looked funny 3 guys all sat out together the beginning of the sng, and then all 3 showed up the exact same second 10 min into the sng. i typed id ask security to investigate, and after typing that, they made me wait forever to get paid. one of the guys i see a lot, ken*npowers, then gaslight, or something like that, or limelight, i forgot the names.

  2. You lost $377 but look at all the comps you won. Well worth it I guess. What does a room there cost if you actually pay for it?

    1. like 43 with tax on a weekday, and like $89 with tax on a saturday. $12 weekday and $30 saturday, no tax, if u use comp dollars instead of cash. but because instead of $1200 worth of $1 bets, it was less than $1200 worth of much bigger size bets, and most of the loss was within a few hands, i didnt even earn $12 in comps today.

      where else but this casino can u get a free room only running a total of $1200 thru a machine? should be so easy as generous as they are on rooms. i just need more patience to wait. Binions sure didnt give out the rooms FREE, even when running $2400 a day thru the machine for the wheel spins.

  3. Nice to see you learned all of that good bankroll management. NOT. LOL!

    1. i did use good bankroll management, otherwise id made 5 bets of a little over $40 each after losing that hand.

  4. Tony says..."a poker player can always quit with a win without feeling like a dummy for leaving. a BJ pro always feels like its foolish to quit in the middle of a shoe with a good count, and that no matter what he is winning or losing, he is forced to stay and keep playing until the count turns negative. it just dont seem to make any sense to quit a game while the deck is favoring the player instead of the house."

    Really???? Why is it any easier to leave a juicy poker game (i.e. you have a big edge) than leaving a BJ shoe with a good count? From a professional gambling point of view, this makes no sense whatsoever. In fact, when a poker game is good, your edge (if you are any good at all) should be much much bigger than any good BJ shoe would ever give you.

  5. Intentionally betting into a known disadvantage because you're "stuck" isn't the mark of a competent pro blackjack player. Since you aren't a recreational gambler looking to have a good time, the only conclusion to be drawn is that you're a hopeless addict.

    I'd peg your risk of ruin at about 50% with how you're betting. That's assuming the machine actually shuffles when it says its going to. I still haven't seen you cite the actual Nevada state law governing how video blackjack machines must operate.

    I own a copy of CVData. If you give me an actual list of

    1) The game's rules
    2) The count system you're using (including index plays)
    3) Your betting ramp (ie $1 TC <1, $4x1hand TC 2, $8x2 hand TC 3)

    I will run a simulation and tell you your expected hourly return and risk of ruin.

    1. uses 4 decks, shuffles every 80 cards. (but not in the middle of the hand).

      surrender allowed (late). splitting allowed, but not resplits, and double any 2. 3-2 pay on BJ. dealer stands on ALL 17s.

      am using the Hi opt 1 counting system. (but am watching to see if many or few aces are out on the side, and making adjustments to my bets depending on whether there is many or few). if many i tend to bet a larger amount on 1 spot, (to get more hands in). if few, i tend to bet less or more spots (but still over $1 on plus counts).

      3. well that can vary alot. hard to say. normally 1 hand $1 on negative counts, also sometimes im playing 3 spots, and sometimes i have all 5 spots depending on how few customers are in the casino. first hand of new shoe often 3 bets of $1, or 5 bets of $1. considering i have an edge with comps (and i dont want it to take twice as many hours to earn my room) i try to AVOID my total bets averaging only $60 per hour when its dealing 60 hands an hour about. that would only be 60c earned in comps per hour. 1% comps. the more i bet per hand, over the longrun, the better off ill be and the time ill save. at least in comps.

      but lets say a plus 1 count is simply 3 spots of $1 (or 5) instead of 1 spot of $1. and a plus 2 count, (remember its a RUNNING count) is the same. at plus 3 or 4, i start betting 1 hand only of 3 or 4 usually, but that might vary depending on the aces left. on a higher count, i might be betting like $6 or $8 and up each on 2 or 3 spots, even more if ive not won in a while and getting stuck, or if its plus 10 instead of plus 6, etc. never have seen the count get above plus 15 i dont think. i vary it so much depending on so many things its hard to analyze.

      what i really expect is to gain $10-20 a day, and get a free room everyday and have my income come from online poker. at least til i can adjust my betting and have a better roll.

      i was told even the really good players spreading $1 one spot to 5 spots $100 each shouldnt expect to win over $60 per hour, but to me that seems unreasonably low.

    2. Competent counters can describe their betting system in a few lines. You can't describe yours in paragraphs. Why the hell are you using Hi Opt? HiLo is far superior to what you're using.

      Your game is extremely flawed. Id estimate your risk of ruin at closer to 90%.

  6. Also,

    How in the unholy blue fuck would not betting huge into a disadvantage at the start of the shoe lead to more variance?!?!?!?

    That would reduce your variance IMMENSELY

  7. Are you ever going to give up on your dream of being a professional VBJ player? It's clear you have an inability to control yourself and next to no idea as to really what you're doing.

  8. went back out 1 final time, lost $51 more, now in the $1500s. back in room in the 100 seat satellite on lock freeroll to the 100k guarantee. i won one once on another site with almost the same deal. sure wish id bought OTHER FOOD ITEMS for the room to piece on instead of just these soups, i shouldve spent $20 in that food 4 less buying food instead of $10, was trying to cut costs though.

    1. Tony, you need to work on your priorities. It is ok to spend some money on food (hopefully some healthy food items). This makes much more sense than throwing away $377 on black jack.

    2. Tony if you want to cut cost stop playing them stupid VBJ machines, Gambling for comps is a losing bet 100% of the time. Running $1200 thru the machine for one days lodging makes no sense.

  9. I must say, i was really quite shocked (and pleasently surprised) to hear from lightning, wanting to know what referral code he should use to sign up for rakeback. i looked it up and sent him an email. that was nice of him, i asked him about his blog, and he just hasnt gotten around to it. also figured Josie wouldve started publishing again by now too, but no.

  10. after i missed the $109 seat on lock, but came in better than 2100+ of the 2300 people in it did i went to eat my last buffet comp, and now im in room to sleep or play on lock. stopped by the VBJ, didnt play all that long, and won back $75 most of it on one good shoe. rolls now in the $1600s again. am making small changes to try and improve edge, such as when betting $8 betting it all on one spot instead of splitting it up on high counts (gets me more hands before it shuffles).

  11. So exactly how would It benefit any player to sit out the first ten minutes of a tourney? Your frequent comments about poker variance (the lacknof ubderstanding) and online poker being rigged sound like something from a beginner not a 20 year veteran

    Also. I've played a lot on lock and merge. Lock sNG players are not as good as merge. It's because lock software sux in regards to playing 10+ tables at a time. It's a crappy design and games don always pop to the forefront... That's why I play more on merge

    Of course this might change with BCP leaving merge. Volume has dropped on merge. More folks might move to lock

    1. what makes the software "bad" on lock is when u are trying to act on a hand, and a new table pops up, it puts it directly in the way in the same spot, instead of in an unused corner of the screen alot of the time, and then u cant get rid of it without dragging it to a new spot, or clicking on "take my seat" before u can finish acting on ur hand. then after doing so, 10 seconds later the table comes right back up.

    2. also the volume on lock right now is about 4x the volume on merge, if u look at the number of players currently online

  12. Tony please keep in mind there is absolutely no nutritional value to ramen noodles, and if that is all you're eating then odds are very high for you getting sick, because you live in a germ filled casino environment and are intaking no protein or vitamins whatsoever.

  13. Great job in the last few $25 SnGs. Maybe threatening to report those cheaters really did the trick and you're back to your real ROI in those?

    With your current long-term plan of being an online SnG pro, it's really important to increase any edge you have, so breaking up that collusion ring was probably really important.

    How's the progress towards your goal of grinding out a ton of SnGs online and making $1,000 in profits in December?

    It looks like you've played 66 SnGs so far in December (an average of 7.3 SnGs a day) and have booked a profit of $9.64. Great job in booking a profit so far!

    That still leaves some work to do to get to $1,000 in profits.

    I could be wrong, but I think most SnG pros play more than 7 SnGs a day. It's also going to be hard to live on an average profit of $1.07 a day, although that will buy you a couple of Ramens so you won't starve.

    I would suggest playing more playing more SnGs to increase your profits but you've mentioned over and over how little time you have, how long it takes to be a pro VBJ grinder, and the daily time allotted to naps of course.

    Maybe we can all brainstorm and find a way to free up more time for you to play poker each day?

    It's tricky because you absolutely don't want to give up a lot of things that take up your time each day -- exercise, volunteering at assorted non-profits, grinding VBJ, studying to improve your poker game, walks in the park and reading books, going to church, hanging out with friends -- as they're just too important to cut back on.

    Maybe you could combine some of those things, freeing up a little more time for poker?

    I know this sounds crazy but maybe you could play Candy Crush Saga while attending Sunday church services. It sounds like you and Jesus have a special arrangement anyway where you're allowed to do a lot of things some Christians aren't so I bet he'd understand about bringing your laptop to church.

    Then you could play some more SnGs instead in that time you'd have spent playing Candy Crush Saga, without having to give anything up.

    The same could be true of improving your poker game, as maybe you could get in the habit of reviewing key hands from your last few online sessions in your head while showering, killing two birds with one stone.

    Or you could analyze your online results for the last few years -- you are logging and analyzing all your results to see what's most profitable for you and what you need to work on, right? -- while enjoying some of that delicious soft serve ice cream at the buffet.

    Just a few thoughts. Now that you've gotten rid of all those cheaters on Lock I think it's time to start thinking outside the box for ways you can make even more money playing online.