CLIFF CHAMBER4

This is my life...

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

THIS IS ME

This is me as I stare at a blank wall
while taking a picture of me staring
at a blank wall.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

GUILTY of SELF-SEEKING MOTIVES

On the morning of October 13th, 2004, as I sat in front of my computer, a frightful worry crossed my mind. How was I to pay the rest of my bills for the month?
Since August 13th, the discovery of a poker site on the internet had wiped out my savings. Not that there was any huge amount, never the less, I had become non-responsible to my monthly obligations as I became hooked to playing the popular game that even is showcased on television in Texas Hold'em.
I rather call it Texas Holdup as I feel that I have been robbed. But I am not alone. You see, I log onto the site and am amazed that there are anywhere from 1,000 to 4,000 people playing on hundreds and hundreds of tables. People from all around the world 24/7.
The stakes start at a nickel up to thousands of dollars (there are play money tables for beginners). There are tables that seat a maximum of six to ten players. There are tables for just one on one (head to head competition).
Now you may ask, "why is this Texas Hold'em poker game so popular?"
Because this site operates tournaments also 24/7. The tounaments are set up with people registering a set amount to begin play at a set time. The schedule of tournaments for a twenty-four period would make anyone's head swim. For anyone who has $$ and loves this game, you can play til the cows come home and continue to play while they are in the barn sleeping!
The tournaments are a process of elimination (players start with 1500 chips) with great prize money for the top percent place winners. I can enter a $1 entry fee tourney starting out with 2,000 players, with the top 150 players winning $$ return and a top prize of $750 for #1 place. Once a tournament begins, the players that make it to the end can figure on playing from 3 to 5 hours. Each tourney takes a five minute break on the hour.
Upon writing this blog covering a two month period, I was guilty of self-seeking motives. I would love to say that I was just playing in tournaments for the enjoyment of a break in my regular daily affairs. When if fact I became addicted to winning and losing. One day I even spent twenty hours in one sitting playing tournament after tournament. I would get eliminated from a tourney and register for the next one. How silly can one person get?
Or, rather, how addicting can one person become?
The realization of what I had got roped into finally set inside my brain and I stepped back to take a look at what this sophisticated gaming on the internet was really all about. I decided to research and to find how many of these poker sites were on the internet. I discovered more sites than cows I had sleeping in the barn at night. And all these poker sites are different in their own way. Some have voice dealers that tell you what is happening. Some have message boards, where you can type and talk to other players at your table. There are sites that you can upload a photo for all players to see. There are many restrictions that all players must abide too, and yes, rowdy and belligerent players can be bounced off the site.
When a person registers at a poker site, he/she develps a user name to use at the tables. I have joined several poker sites as Bingocliff, BingoC, Lioncliff, Tigercliff, Yoopercliff, and Tequilacat.
I will continue to be guilty of self-seeking motives until I come to my senses or the cows don't come home.

Friday, July 22, 2005

THE STAT-O-GRAM (PART 2)

My favorite poker player on line is Tequilacat. thecliffchamber.com/tequilacat.htm

I will cover the remaining eleven (11) stages of what I call the stat-o-gram, the device used by several on line poker sites that keep statistics of your poker hand playing. The next category covered by the stat-o-gram is Your Actions once the pocket cards are dealt in the game Texas Hold'em. 1) Fold 2) Check 3) Call 4) Bet 5) Raise 6) Re-raise. Based on 100-games of Texas Hold'em, the following results were conducted by the stat-o-gram.
On October 9th, 2004, the following results were recorded: 1) 35% 2) 23% 3) 31% 4) 8% 5) 2% 6) 2%
On July 4th, 2005, the following results were recorded: 1) 55.71% 2) 16.25% 3) 19.43% 4) 5.65% 5) 2.30% 6) .65%
In what stage does one see the greatest difference? It is stage #1 Fold, where the percentage rose from 35% to 56%. The reasoning was because I had added by July '05 strategy to my poker playing over just plain luck. I was losing far less money in July than I was back in October.
The final category with five (5) stages has to do with When You Fold during a game of Texas Hold'em after receiving your two (2) pocket cards. 1) Pre-flop 2) Flop 3) Turn 4) River 5) No Fold. Based on 100-games of Texas Hold'em, the following results were conducted by the stat-o-gram.
On October 9th, 2004, the following results were: 1) 55% 2) 13% 3) 6% 4) 4% 5) 22%
On July 4th, 2005, the following results were: 1) 81.36% 2) 9.02% 3) 3.14% 4) 2.43% 5) 4.04%
What stage(s) have the greatest differences? They are stages #1 & #5.

Do not think that I have become a chicken to playing Texas Hold'em. Because the truth is that I have discovered strategy in playing over just plain luck. Also that I have developed patience to go along. When the luck does appears with playing with strategy, watch out!

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

THE STAT-O-GRAM (PART 1)

Many of the poker sites on the internet now provide you with a statistical device that I will call a stat-o-gram. This device keeps track of your play with each game of a particular poker game. The percentages of your wins, folds, etc. What is a plus with this device, is the fact that you can reset this device at any time during your playing of these poker games. Let us say after each 100 games for simplicity reasons.
As an example, I will show what I have done with the stat-o-gram during my playing Texas Hold'em Poker at http://absolutepoker.com . As I have stated in earlier articles, I became a new player of this on line poker in August 2004. I have played poker all my life and I figured that I was a Pro. Joining several poker on line sites in the first three months, I found that I was not only a Pro, but I was not even an amateur. I lost money because I played on luck only. Who was I kidding?
Now with the game of Texas Hold'em, each player is dealt two (2) pocket cards. A round of betting transpires. Then the Flop occurs where the dealer lays three cards face-up in the middle of the table. All players use these three (3) cards to work out the best poker hand with their two (2) pocket cards. Then another round of betting occurs. The dealer then flips face-up a fourth card called the Turn. Another round of betting and then the dealer shows face-up the final card called the River. All players still in the game use the five (5) cards face-up with the two (2) pocket cards to make the best five card poker hand. A final round of betting and the winner with the best poker hand wins all.
With the stat-o-gram, to play 100-hands of Texas Hold'em at an average table of ten players, it will take 3.5 hours or about 210 minutes. The following statistics are covered with the stat-o-gram. 1) the % of games won 2) the % of Flops seen 3) the % of showdowns won 4) the win % of Flops seen.
On October 9th, 2004, the following results were recorded by this player. 1) 13% 2) 44% 3) 53% 4) 29%
On July 4th, 2005, the following results were as follows: 1) 17% 2) 12% 3) 59% 4) 36%
In what stage does one see the greatest difference? It is stage #2 and I will explain in Part #2 why? Plus, I will explain the other eleven (11) statistics covered by the stat-o-gram.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

TRICKS OF THE TRADE

In September 2004, I continue to invest and lose playing Texas Hold'em on the internet. I have joined another new site, downloading the poker room onto my desktop. I become amazed at how many people are playing poker at this new site. Not hundreds, but thousands from all over the world, are online at the same time. The tournaments are huge and start on the half hour. The entry fees range from $1 to $100, and there are cap limit of players that range from 300 to 2000. Each tournament pays back on 10% of the starting field.
There is no doubt that I have become hooked. I do not enter any casino, parlors for horse races, or bet on any sporting events. I go to the poker rooms and play in tournaments. I am like a child with a new toy. Each tournament is played out in three to five hours, a process of elimination until only one player has all the chips and wins the top prize.
As an example, I register to play in a $3 tourney and a field of 400 players. The pay-outs for the top forty players range from $3.10 to top prize of $859.50 for first place. I play for two-hours and fifty-minutes before being eliminated. I end up 27th in the field and win $6.39 return.
I then register for another tournament and proceed to play. The Devil in Disguise (stinking thinking) keeps telling me that I am learning new tricks of the trade as I continue to lose my investments.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

TEXAS HOLD-UP?

What an impact gambling has had on my life in recovery. To be honest, I am a recovering alcoholic, but as long as I can remember, I have had gambling in the blood stream. I love to compete. Compete for what? To become rich? To become famous? For my pride? Or, just to have fun? If that is the case, then it is for the enjoyment, relaxation, spending money to pass the time.
But again, I love to compete. Do I want to lose? I would be nuts if the answer were yes. No one person competes to lose. Of course, not everyone can win either.

I have become a victim in part to the most popular game in the whole world. The hand is poker, the game is called Texas Hold'em. I have been blind-sided, bluffed at, and literally stripped of my savings from the investments I had made in downloading of poker rooms onto my desk top of my computer. The beginning started of all days, (my God!) Friday the 13th, August 2004.
Had I any idea what I was getting myself into?

THE BEGINNING

All because of a mailed brochure (what an excuse?) that I recieved from ____.com with a bonus to be awarded, I opened a new account with an investment of $250 to yet another Sports book site on the internet. This has to be the most updated sophisticated gambling all in one...I mean unreal. Not only the Sports book and casino like the other four I have accounts too, this site has a poker room out of sight! ...and it is true as mentioned on my website, that I have enjoyed watching the World Series of Poker on TV.
I am now able to participate in playing poker, not only against other people around this world, but also the most popular game of poker in Texas Hold'em. This game has tournaments that are going on 24/7 from all price ranges starting at $0 to the moon! Another added attraction is the off track betting parlor of all the horse races taken place in one day...even the tracks of Chicago where I lost so much money back in the '80...my God!
I was hooked to this new site right from the start. I mean that I opened up my mind and let the Devil in Disguise from the past walk right in. The losing took over!
I recieved two bonuses, $70 total, to go with the initial investment of $250...and jumping right into action, it didn't take me to long to lose it all. But of course, as the Devil in Disguise would tell me, I was in a learning process at a new site. I fell in love, especially with that of the Texas Hold'em tournaments. Do I know how to play? No! ...and even so I watched the tournaments on TV, the strategy was beyond my comprehension to start. Do you need patience? Yes!
Now don't get me wrong, having luck also plays a huge role in winning. So on day number eight at this site, I placed another $250 in my account. Am I out of my mind? I got hooked; it is as simple as that. I got the Texas Hold'em Bug! I love it! But again, as the Devil in Disguise would tell me, I am learning the in and outs as I blow the money...learning new tricks of the trade. I am like a small child with a new toy, having much growing up to do.
No sports betting, no casino, no horse races, just playing in Texas Hold'em tournaments against hundreds of people or just in the poker rooms of ten people at a table...and for hours and hours at a time. It is totally amazing as you can chat with the other players too!
In three weeks time, I lost the $500, plus the $70 in bonuses. Do you know what? This is not Texas Hold'em; this is Texas Hold-up!

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

NEW MILLENNIUM FANTASY

In the year 2000, having self-edification in the use of a computer and the internet, my fantasy sports world expanded to an unbelievable outer limits. Not only did I invest on playing the three major sports, I then developed fantasy teams for Hockey, NASCAR, and Golf. I no longer had to invest by phone and mail, or buy a daily USA Today paper. Investing and researching were all done on the internet at many sport web sites.
This fantasy sports of gambling in my records of financing is labeled Investments. As I review my records, I see where the investments grew to an outrages height in 2003. I was losing and the enjoyment of competing against thousands of fantasy teams had lost its luster. This task was not only becoming expensive, but in truth, had become a full time job. By keeping statistical records of players and teams was time consuming. The bottom line was that I wasn't getting back much return on my investments. The writing was on the wall, and starting in 2004, I had planned to cut way back on fantasy team investments.
In 2002, I had even opened four accounts with sportbook sites. Nothing drastic, just to be able to make a few small wagers on sporting events. I held my own at times, but would eventually lose my investment. I could play on a twenty dollar bill for up to three months, winning some to keep on going.
By 2004, it was time for me to concentrate more time to my new way of living as a freelance writer. Call it a New Year's resolution, whatever, but it worked. As of August 2004, I had only invested a total of $40 toward the sportbooks. And by 80%, I cut back on developing fantasy teams.