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Episode one

It’s time for another edition of “Let’s Bitch about Poker”, I’m your host, ExMember, and we’ve got a lot of bitching to do today, so let’s get right to it.

J2o in the big blind. You can already tell this story is going to have an unhappy ending, can’t you?

There’s an early position limper and a late position limper. I check of course. Now that I think about it, I really should consider raising here. I shouldn’t do it, but I really should consider it.

Jd7s6s flop. If anyone thinks they know the correct way to play this situation, I would love to hear it. Of course, like everything else in poker, it depends. I checked. I’m not going to defend that decision.

Early position bet the pot, late position called. I called too. What can I say? I have top pair, and it’s likely good. That doesn’t mean I should call, but I’m too much of a pussy to raise here. The fact that it would take a pot and a half raise to push either of these players off a straight or flush draw doesn’t help.

An offsuit king shows up on the turn. This is a great time to stop acting like a wimp. It’s unlikely anyone hit that king. Flush and straight draws just became a lot less valuable and a lot more likely to fold. And I still have a jack I don’t want to get bluffed, or semi-bluffed off.

I bet 3/4 the pot. Only early position calls.

That does it. My jack is probably no good. I’m probably up against, J8-QJ. Time to cut my losses and move on.

The river is an offsuit 4. I check. Early position bets 40% of the pot.

This is fishy. Why bet a weak jack there? He can’t imagine he’ll get a call and win. If he had a strong jack, a king, or any other made hand, why only call the turn? No draw came in, so he can’t be betting that. The only hand he can have is a missed flush draw that he’s trying to bluff with. I called.

Did you spot the logic error in the previous paragraph? I’ll give you a hint, I was right, he had a missed flush draw. Have you figured it out? I’ll give you another hint. He hit his draw. Have you got it now? If you said 58s you were correct. If you said 35s you get half-credit.

How could I have known? I guess something about this player should have tipped me off that he might limp in from early position with small suited two-gappers, but whatever it was I, missed it.

I had a lot of these, but most of them boil down “Guy with amazingly crappy hand wins the pot. I lose a lot of money.” QQ v J7, AA v AK. As pissed as I was when each hand happened, they are boring stories with nothing interesting or unique about them.

There’s one where I figured out the guy had trip Kings, slowed down and then tried to punish him when I rivered my straight. But the same card that my straight improved him to a full-house. At least that one has a lesson; be careful of trying to outdraw someone when they could improve with the same card.

It happens more often than you might guess. At least it happens to me more often than I would guess. Yesterday I was worried about flopping middle set when there was a straight and flush possible on the board. I wasn’t worried at all on the river when I made the full house. But it turns out I was up against bottom set on the flop, four of a kind on the river.

Okay, that’s all the bad beat stories I’m telling today. I’m sorry. I promise three enlightening posts about poker as penance.