Thursday, September 13, 2007

LIttle landmarks

Pauly's helping cover the WSOPE (which I'm pronouncing in my head as "wuh-soppy") and this is what he wrote about a Brit who pulled down a monster hand (quad 6s):

On the third hand of the tournament, Thomas Bihl busted out after donking off his chips and made some random British hot chick, Sarah Taylor, the chipleader. Taylor limped from UTG. William Thorson called. Thomas Bihl raised to 1,200 from the big blind. Taylor called as did Thorson. I put Bihl on a big pair. The flop was 9d-6s-4d. Taylor bet out of turn and was told by the dealer to take her bet back. Bihl checked. Taylor then bet 1,000. Thorson called. Bihl check-raised to 6,000. Taylor and Thorson called. The turn was the 6h. Bihl checked. Taylor bet 8,000 and sat back in her chair... a signal of strength. She was also shaking uncontrollably. My gut told me that she had 6-6 and turn quads. The chick was shaking for fucks sake. The ever cool Thorson folded and Bihl went into the tank for a minute before he check-raised all in. What the fuck? Taylor quickly called. I expected Bihl to have A-A or at least 9-9 or 4-4 for the full house. Nope. He flipped over Qh-Qd. Taylor tabled 6d-6c for quads. Bihl was drawing dead as the dealer put out a meaningless 5h on the river. Bihl headed to the rail as Taylor dragged the pot and jumped out to an early chiplead. Two days earlier Bihl won a bracelet after he came from behind and beat Jen Harman in the HORSE event as he made history and became the first ever player to win a bracelet in Europe. Then he donked off his chips to an amateur who obviously held a monster hand. I can only assume that Bihl is primarily an online player who doesn't study the physical reactions of players as much as he should. I mean, Taylor was shaking. How could he not know she had a hand?

I don't think I do that anymore. When I held my Ace-high straight against Dash, I was as cool as a cucumber. I kept thinking over and over again what Wil Wheaton said once about being an actor and committing your face and your body into believing that you don't have an Ace-high straight. I wanted to look confident enough that he'd think I had game, but not too confident because I wanted his chips.

I still think back to the second time I played at Doc's house and he said that it was getting harder to read me. That's a skill I definitely need to keep working on.

What interests me is that I'm more upset that Taylor's a woman who isn't covering her tells rather than Taylor being a person who isn't covering their tells. It's like I want to yell at her to shape up because every time she plays in a big game like the WSOPE, she reps us other female players who want to be known for their good game.

All of this is just prelude to me spending $100 at the tables on my 30th birthday party in Las Vegas next week so I can find out how good I've really gotten, if at all. My friend Steve bought me the first volume of Harrington on Hold 'Em and I'm going to be devouring that thing on the plane, along with Positively Fifth Street because I like a good essay.

Wish me luck.

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