Sunday, February 13, 2005

"He cannot be so dense as not to realize that his public persona sows only negative karma, so we can only presume that he likes it that way - possibly only at a subconscious level, but it amounts to the same thing."
Paul Phillips

How many different ways can I say it?
Paul fucking rules.
As I've said before, Paul is actually a lot like me, only successful.

Thanks for stopping by this humble poker blog. Keep checking back - I'm gonna try for more posts, more often, this week.

Where to start? I've a ton of random poker content for you tonight - Time for a return to a genuine, tangential, Guinness-fueled uber-post. God knows how long this is going to take me to type this out drunk one-handed.

Again, my credo is: Destroying Workplace Production One Post at a Time.

This post brought to you by Bonus Code IGGY on Party Poker, damnit.
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I read yet a few more whiny posts about the poker bloggers and their mob mentality.
Gimme a fucking break.

There is only ONE thing that could make the poker blogging scene even better:

More cowbell.

One of my heroes, Otis, dispensed some wisdom about blogging to me. He reminded me how bloggers are either diarists or reporters. My original intent was to be a diarist, documenting my playing and thoughts about poker, hopefully to help clarify my thinking. But things changed. I ultimately decided to share the best of poker content that I discovered in my daily reading. It was the kind of blog that I personally would enjoy. Thusly, the uber-post was born.

But many readers wanted me to write more about myself and my play, which is flattering, but I'll say it again: Grinding is freaking Boring. Especially when you do it for a living. But if you really want a Trip Report from yours truly, please go read about me playing Poker in Aruba.

But alas, I did open myself up last week, writing a highly personal post, which allowed for some serious evil commentary from the Haters:

Iggy, Karma is a bitch, maybe if you weren't such an ass your friend's wife would still be alive. Take that cock and suck on it.

Karma, indeed. You'll surely get yours, you gutless fuck.

I know, I know. Ignore it. But this was such a ridiculously sick cheap shot that I felt compelled to post it.

I don't mind taking shots - I'm used to it. I can't count all the dead cat comments I've had to endure over the past six months. But shouldn't my friends' dead wife be sacrosanct?

Is it any wonder I'm reluctant to blog about myself? But then again, feedback here at Guinness and Poker has been overwhelmingly positive, and for that, I'm thankful. Statistically speaking, the Haters are a tiny minority.

Don't think the haters get me down, gentle reader. They don't. They're cowardly and dull and predictable and anonymous and secretly love me, so eff 'em.

And that's the last I'll ever speak on this topic. I should have just ignored it because that's what Haters crave - attention. Even if it's negative attention. So I'll be taking the High Road from here on out. I'm just gonna pound massive amounts of Guinness, bark about Bonus Code IGGY and post the best poker content I can get my tiny hands on. Fair enough?

So let's do it: I don't have much to say about my poker play this week, for obvious reasons. But I finally ducked into 15.30 on Pacific on Friday evening for a +40BB session. I just wanted a slow, passive game to go along with my mindset. I'm pretty damn disciplined about not playing when I'm frazzled or even on semi-subtle-tilt, and last week woulda been a good week to drop a bundle of money.

Threshhold of misery, indeed.

Anyway, I'll be returning to full-time poker this week. Looking forward to it.

Damn, where to start?
Tons of tasty poker goodness for you today. Settle in and enjoy this tepid post.

I have a few loyal readers in the Cincinnati Reds front office. They sent me this screenshot while weeping into their Starbucks.

Apparently they bribed their IT guy with a gross of Twinkies and had the ban removed. Well done.

Noteable poker author, Lou Krieger, informed us about the new poker reality TV show he's been working on. I'll let Lou explain it in his own words:

"Vegas Virgins," the TV Show
Author: Lou Krieger

I'm in Las Vegas working on a TV show called "Vegas Virgins," which is why I've been largely absent from RGP the past few weeks but it's been more fun than almost anything I've ever done.

Here's the show's concept in a nutshell: It's a poker-meets-reality-show in which 10 people who have never played casino poker before -- five from the USA and five from the UK -- are whisked away to Las Vegas for three weeks, put up in a first class hotel and provided with poker coaching. That's my job, and it will be on camera. A "success coach" in the person of Dr. Sally St. John, has also been provided for the players, and it's her job to work with each of them on life lessons while I concentrate on making credible poker players out of absolute newbies.

Each day there are tasks to be performed, such as eating incredibly horrid food, walking on a tightrope suspended just below the Fremont Street Experience canopy -- sort of like "Survivor" or "Fear Factor," and it's no surprise since the show's producers are veterans of those shows -- and task performance determines the number of starting chips in each night's poker game.

The winner of each evening's poker game selects one player to be tossed off the show. In alternating fashion, they toss a Brit, then an American, until just one player from each country remains. The two survivors will play and the winner receives $5,000 to play poker against a few real "pros," each of whom will be armed with fewer chips. The money discrepancy levels the playing field and give the newbie a fair shot at winning.

I'm on camera for all shows giving poker lessons to the players and doing the play-by-play commentary of each nightly tournament, which gives me some opportunity to talk up my seven books, as well as the two online sites I'm associated with: Royal Vegas Poker and the College Poker Championship.

I'm not sure about when the show will air in the USA, although it is set to air in the UK in May or June. While we were filming, folks from the Casino and Gaming TV Network were on hand, so they'll probably air the show, even though that network has yet to make its debut. Vegas Virgins will be seen in both the UK and USA through syndication, though I do not have any specific dates; what I do know is that filming began the last week in January and will run through February 15.

I realize the hard core cynics on RGP will probably trash the show as being untrue to the real nature of poker, but I've never done anything like this in my life and I'm loving every moment of it. Days are long; there are poker lessons to be given, tasks to be performed (often at different locations in and around Las Vegas -- we've been to the Rim of Fire, the Navy Graveyard at Nelson, NV, an Elvis Wedding Chapel, Fremont Street) and the riggings and shoots are quite time consuming. Often we begin in the morning and don't finish until midnight. I think I've played poker only four times since I've been here, although I did get a chance to have breakfast one day
with Jim Brier, Barry Tanenbaum, and Dr. Al Schoonmaker.

The nightly poker tournaments have been filmed onsite at the Orleans as well as at Media Underground, a Las Vegas production facility with a controlled environment, where a set has been rigged to model a poker game in a casino.

We began filming in late January and conclude February 15. The crew is a mixture of Brits, Aussies, and Irish and a great group to work and hang out with. When they hired me for the gig, I looked at it as a one-time opportunity. But now with some light visible at the end of the tunnel, I'm hoping the show is successful and they decide to bring it, and me, back for a second season.

With John Harkness doing his thing on "Tilt," and me on "Vegas Virgins," can episodic television be the next frontier for poker players? In this altered state of poker perception and media feeding frenzy, anything can happen. Quien sabe?

Lou's a classy guy but this TV show sounds so ridiculous that it will prolly be a huge hit. I'm just not surprised by anything poker-related anymore.

I submit as evidence: Celebrity Mug Shot Playing Cards
Check out 53 of the most famous and our favorite celebrity mug shots printed on casino quality playing cards exclusively from StarzBehindBarz.com.


Allow me to share this thread about the impending 2+2 books due out this year. Here's a comprehensive list for your poker book buying needs:

"Raymer on Self Defense"
"Hellmuth's Guide to Relaxation"
"Play Golf like the Pros" by Phil Ivey
Dr. Strange-Shirt or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Drop the F-Bomb by Freddy Deeb
"Religion for Dummy's" by Sklansky
"Mastering People Skills" by Josh Arieh
"Poker Tears 101" by Mike Matasow
"Primal Mating Calls of the Wild" by Matias Anderson
"The Lotus Position and other Table Yoga" by Annie Duke
"Respecting the Game" by James McManus
"Picking up a REAL hand" by Vince Van Patten
"ESPN's Guide to Proper Tournament Manners" by The Crew
"I'm Really Tall" by Phil Gordon
"A Gentleman's Game: Poker Table Ettiquette" by Ellix Powers
"Tighter Than a Snare Drum" by Gus Hansen
"The Art of the Intense and Annoying Stare-Down" by Glenn Hughes
"How to Play Flawless Pot-Limit Omaha" by Ted Lawson
"Playing Poker Just for Fun and Recreation" by Phil Ivey

A big hoist of the Guinness to long-time blogger, Jason at Poker Odyssey for being named as Media Director for the Internet Series of Poker (ISOP). Jason's old school, blogging for longer than I.

Incidentally, Paul Phillips wrote a post about Russ Boyd and PokerSpot.

I just found three good poker rules from poker author, Larry "Wayno" Phillips, (another one of my all-time favorite RGP posters.) Food for thought:

1. Play as well as you can every session and enjoy the people.
2. Never mock a new player or acquaintance in poker, because in 6 months or so you may find he is a very good friend.
3. Most long-time players would agree whole-heartedly with the following sentiment: It is generally the case that if I never won another dime in the game of poker, that the people that I have met through the game (and otherwise would not have met) have made the whole experience worthwhile.

You've read here about the impending Gus Hansen and Chris Moneymaker books. Well, I'll be tickled - Moneymaker's book is out and in bookshelves.
Here's a link to it from Barnes and Nobles:
Moneymaker: How an Amateur Poker Player Turned $40 into $2. 5 Million at the World Series of Poker

Here was an RGP review:

Any of you see this yet? Saw it at a bookstore last night and did a double take. Skimmed it. First part's a brief bio, rest is mainly a recap of the 2003 Main Event(duh).

Very interesting to read his thoughts. Kid doesn't spare himself on stuff regarding his drinking, marital seperation, etc either.

Funniest part: He & his buds get so smashed at a strip club that night their bill is *$15K*. MM only has 5K. Manager ain't even trying to hear the "Dude, I got 2.5 mil in a box at Binion's." Won't let 'em leave. F'nly, this girl they'd been hanging with knows a famous poker player (guess who), calls him up and he brings down 10K.

Quick story: there's a purdy girl by the name of Jenn1c1de who gets way too much attention from the nerdy poker players out there. Lots of creepiness and stalker-ish posts. Anyway, her site is here, if you wanna take a peek at some pics. Her more "racy" photos were re-posted here. And lastly, she has a WPT Trip Report up at Poker Babes site.
Jennicide's Caribbean Adventure

Whew. Now all that being said, here's another post about Jennicide that someone spent FAR too much time constructing.

More Questions for Jennicide

If you are in the missionary position with King Deuce and I limp in from
cutoff trying to steal your button, would you prefer me to go all-in or
play second hand low with a pocket 10?

Let's say you have a reputaton for being tight. If a 300 pound guy with
pocket jacks commits half his stack in an attempt to loosen you up a bit,
would you try to convince him to put his entire stack in by going over the
top of him? Would you willingly surrender your small blind to him?

You are at the final table of the WSOP and raise the blinds 5x with King
King. If everyone folds to you would you show the table your big pair anyways?

Final Scenario: You have been on the come all night. One guy at your
table is holding a monster, but you suspect that the guy to your left has
the nuts. You are in middle position and since you have rags are only
looking at the possibility of a backdoor draw. Facing the possibility of
a jammed pot, would you risk letting either of these two double-up on you?

Not exactly my sense of humour but I thought I'd share it.

Michelle Spiro, for one, is sick of the crap and says:

Jennicide stalkers
Author: Michelle Spiro

What has gotten in to all of you? Frankly, I am embarrased to be an RGPer
with the complete disrespect of women that has been going on around here.
I think I am going to change my pic to one of Rush Limbaugh when I return
to Stars on a more regular basis. It is scary that players such as
Jennicide and (to a much lesser extent) myself have to use stage names to
keep the nutbags at bay. Being female and enjoying the game of poker is
not carte blanche for people to make derogatory comments and threats that
border on criminal.

She's got a point.

PiperPoker alerted me to GoogleFight and the fact that Iggy defeats Dutch Boyd.
Go ahead try it. Iggy vs Dutch Boyd.

Moving along, what kind of post would this be without some Phil Helmuth content?
That's right, a crappy one.

Damn, Phil truly had a bad year.
Here's the Player of the Year tabulation:

Phil Hellmuth Jr.
From: Palo Alto, CA
Rank: 286
Total Points: 672
Total Winnings: $64,680
Total Final Tables: 2

Results for the year 2004

Tournament / Event Date Place Points Winnings
2004 35th Annual World Series of Poker
Pot-Limit Hold'em Final Day 5/15/04 7 288 $34,880
2004 35th Annual World Series of Poker
Pot-Limit Hold'em Final Day 5/11/04 6 384 $29,800

That's some pretty shitty results from the man who proclaimed that without bad luck, he'd never lose.

Irish Mike had this to say in Phil's defense:

A couple of points. First, there are a lot of working people in this country that make less than $65K a year but I admit it doesn't sound like much for a guy, who by his own description, is one of the best tournament
poker players in the world.

Second, I think it's more a reflection of the reality of tournament poker
today, than Phil's lack of skill. Most tournaments today have huge fields.
While this greatly increases the prize money it also greatly reduces any
single individuals chance of winning. Luck also plays a much larger role in
these large tournaments than many players like to admit. For example, Greg
Raymer won $5M in 2004 but I doubt many people believe he is a better
tournament player than Helmuth.

Third, I think this underscores the need to be both a good ring game and tournament player. A good ring game player can always make money and his out-of-pocket expenses are usually a lot less than a tournament player's. When a tournament player scores a big win, it can be huge, but he can go a long time between those big wins. Mean while, he still has to come up with the money to pay travel expenses and all those tournament entry fees.

Irish Mike

Bah. It's way more fun to simply say: Phil sucks.

Meaningless trivia nugget: Did you know the oldest known playing card, from China, dates from the eleventh century?

FYI: The new episode of Poker Updates is currently streaming online.

The February episode includes:

* Poker Stars Caribbean Adventure
* Jack Binion World Poker Open
* Daniel's Corner w/ Daniel Negreanu
* Mike Caro teaches how to spot tells
* The world's only Poker Newscast w/ Patty Steele

This is old news but Party Poker is floating an IPO. Here's a link to a BBC news article:
Bets on for poker site to float
The world's biggest online poker firm PartyGaming is tipped to float on the London Stock Exchange, a move that could put it into the FTSE 100 index.

I thought I'd add this tidbit for those of you interested in such things.
The CEO of True Poker reported the EBITDA for 2004 for Party Poker was:
$350,000,000 USD.

Not too shabby, eh?

I saw this post over at Stick & Move about ESPN's Jackpot Jay getting poleaxed:

In his column, Jay says:

"It's not so much the money (though I definitely would rather win cash than lose it) as it is that this losing streak supports what so many of my frequent critics (in e-mails, at the poker news groups, in blogs, in articles) have been saying all along: That I don't know what the (bleep) I'm doing -- or, for that matter, talking about. Right now, frankly, it's hard to argue that they're wrong."

Interesting that Jay notes he was getting slammed in blogs. Chalk another one up to Iggy.


Matt Savage announced on his website that he is holding a contest for ideas for the money presentation for Bay 101's World Poker Tour event.
Go to www.savagetournaments.com for details.

Looks like the WPT is about to launch its own poker site, which should be interesting.
World Poker Tour and WagerWorks Finalize Agreement and Set Timetable for Launch of International Online Gaming Site - Press Release
WPT Brand & International TV Exposure Expected to Drive Players to Site Worldwide; WPTonline.com To Debut in 2nd Quarter of '05


WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--- WPT Enterprises, Inc. and WagerWorks finalized its agreement today to develop a WORLD POKER TOUR(TM) (WPT) branded real-money gaming website. The two companies also announced that the site, WPTonline.com, is expected to go live in the second quarter of this year. WPTonline.com will prohibit bets from players in the U.S. and other jurisdictions where online gaming is prohibited.

WPTonline.com will showcase a WPT-branded poker room featuring ring games, Sit and Gos, and multi-table tournaments for poker games including Texas Hold'em, Omaha, 7 Card Stud, and 7 Card Hi-Lo. Additionally, the site will feature an online casino with a broad selection of slots and table games including WagerWorks' exclusive online titles Monopoly(TM), Wheel of FortuneĀ®, and The Price is Right(TM)."

Here's a token poker link.... an online poker nickname generator:
Poker Nickname

This oughta be pretty damn interesting to watch:
2005 National Heads-Up Poker Championship on NBC. Hit their site for more info.

NBC Sports presents the ultimate big-stakes poker showdown: a 64-player Heads-Up poker tournament. The winner will be crowned the best 1-on-1 poker player in the world.

Held at the Golden Nugget Resort and Casino in Nevada, Las Vegas (March 4-6), the tournament will be on NBC for four consecutive Sundays, beginning May l and concluding with a two-hour finale on May 22.

The 2005 National Heads-Up Poker Championship will offer one of the most recognizable fields in poker with legends like Doyle Brunson and Johnny Chan as well as the new stars like Erick Lindgren, Gus Hansen, Chris Moneymaker and Greg Raymer all competing against each other in a one-on-one tournament.

Want some help doing poker chips tricks? MtDewVirus has a stellar site, complete with videos and how-to's. Aspiring trick artists check it out here: Poker Chip Tricks.

Speaking of which, someone asked me if they have a poker problem because they keep finding themselves trying to shuffle their daughters Nilla Wafers. Anyone else have that issue?

So alas, I'm gonna cut this short while I can still see straight. Thanks to anyone who managed to read this far. I'm happy to give my readers something to read while at work on a Monday. I'll be back very soon - I'm saving some good stuff for later.

Again, this site is brought to you by Bonus Code IGGY damnit. That's on Party Poker. Your bankroll will thank you. And you'll thank me. Check it out now before the poker universe implodes on itself!

Fast Eddie sent me this shot:

And finally, I found this wonderful writing by Wayno about his story on how he began playing poker. Too bad he deserted RGP along with Mr. Paul Phillips. It just ain't the same anymore.

>>>What's your story? How did you start in poker?

oil spot in garage
summer day
playing for popsickle sticks
nearby park
picnic tables
more cards
9 year old low-lifes
Mom: "You're not playing for money, are you?
high school games
17 year old low-lifes
19 year old low-lifes
7 Days a week at the horserace track, 1 p.m. post time -
followed by all-night poker games
No sex
giant raid by the Dean Of Students + law enforcement
Everyone but me kicked out of my dorm - 26 guys- cause I was in the bathroom when the big raid happened.
Some sex- but not that much
More games
I defeat the college quarterback in a challenge match throwing oranges in a cup. $1,000 win. 14 crates of oranges ordered from nearby supermarket.
He defeats me later at night in a drinking contest when I tip over.
Wins half of it back.
Different college
Animal House
All night poker games
Visits from postal inspectors 7 days a week
Eventually asked to leave college due to some technicality involving..."grades"
Happy home life - no sex.
Game on Polish ocean liner heading to Europe
Polish boxer threatens to kill me- says I have "a big mouth" - tears up deck
25 year old low-lifes
Race track at Autueil outside of Paris
Casino in Nice
World Chess Championship in Nice, France.
Stands directly behind Boris Spassky and watches him play.
Makes several remarks about Boris's hair and his Russian suit.
A number of spectators start laughing.
Escorted to the door by security.
Some sex- but not much
Return to America
Home games
Tavern games
Riverboat games
Mom: "You're not playing for money, are you?"
Takes gift cheese box on board riverboat for a friend,
Trapper Tom. Accused of trying to bring a bomb on board. Cheese-box frisked.
32 year old low-lifes
Dupes publisher into publishing several woozy books.
Celebrates by floor-draining a case of Miller High Life at a local tavern.
Gives away 75 copies of book free to anyone who wants one.
Signs every copy "To my best friend"
Reprimanded by publisher.
Mom: "Are they paying you any money for this?"
Tavern home game scheduled same night as Sheriff's Christmas Party.
Tells Sheriff "we're playing for matchsticks".
Game broken up.
Big loss in Australian horse-track "incident".
Some sex- not too much.
Paradise Poker.
No sex at all.
Renewed interest in game.
Depressed- considers quitting game
Lee Munzer watches my game, shakes his head, begs me to reconsider.
Says poker "needs me".
Tunica. Gold Strike.
Meets Gary Phillips for the first time.
Nexr day, meets Gary for the second time
Then meets him for the third time (the following day)
Discovers he's there every day and stops keeping track.
Tuesday Night Home Game.
Only game in the country with an "injury list".
Most commonly heard expression: "Player down".
52 year old low-lifes.
Visit from my 80 year old mother at home while in the middle of playing poker on-line.

"You're not playing for money, are you?" she asks.

=======================END WAYNO============================

Link of the Day:
I'd Like a Shake, Please
Climax Red Top, the world's first drive-through titty bar, is available for auction on EBay. Price: $400,000 and your immortal soul.

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