Saturday, July 5, 2008

Looking forward

Turning point

Not sure what sparked it, but I've been thinking a lot more about what I'm doing now and what I'll be doing in the coming months and years.

For now, poker is more than good enough for a job in terms of $/hr and the hours I have to put into it. Long-term, poker (especially online) will probably change, and my future there is a little hazy. If poker were to stay in a static state, I'd guess that I could probably make it through 200nl without a coach, and would probably need one past there, but I think I could beat 400nl in a year or so. Past that and I really have no idea.

Poker is changing though - online poker might someday get banned in Canada. The players are getting increasingly better because of more readily available online resources like coaching sites. I mean there will always be fish, but who knows exactly how profitable it will be in 5 or 10 years. In other words, I don't want to depend on poker for a long-term career.

I think for short-term career moves I'll be at least going back to college for more electrical and construction courses, maybe even business school or university. Who knows. I really try to avoid thinking about it, but the more I do, the more I realize I'm one of those people who never wants to 'work'. I remember when I was younger and more naive, I often said I'd be rich by the end of my life whether or not it was by legal means. lol. Maybe I'll rob a bank and flee to the carribeans or something, who knows.

This is kind of personal stuff, but whatever. My family is kind of in ruins right now. We're in massive debt, our house is so broken down now that it'll probably have to be sold for 'scraps' in the near future, and we might have to settle for an apartment for the first time ever. My mom just got a 5 year lease on her new business place, so the idea of her retiring to our cottage, us selling our house, and my brother and I moving out on our own is now out the window. I really don't know what we're going to do.

I dunno where I'm going with this, but basically I'm at a turning point in my life. I'll literally soon have to make the decision between doing something with my life, or becoming a bum.

This life-changing air has given me some pretty crazy ideas. For one, I've decided I'm going sky-diving by the end of the summer with a friend. It's actually pretty cheap at like $250 or so, plus you can actually go solo for your first run as opposed to strapped to some guy a la giant baby carrier style. So that should be fun. Another thing I'm considering, for the millionth time, is going traveling. I think this would be the time to do it if ever there was one - I'm not tied down to a job, I have money to spend (ie my bankroll :( ), and I'm still young and healthy. We'll see.

Taking shots

So taking a huge step back from traveling, college and becoming a homeless man, I've been thinking about poker too. In the spur of the moment, I decided last night to take some shots at 200nl, and at first it seemed like a really bad idea. Yet again, just as with my (first) move from 50nl to 100nl, I played way too aggressively, called down too light, and just played like a fish in general. I give players way too little respect for hands, and way too much respect for their move-making abilities. I 4bet bluff my first orbit. I called down AJ for TP in an obvious set-mining spot. I sucked.

So within the first 250 hands or so I was down like $550. Funny how losing that amount doesn't even tilt me anymore though. I mean I wasn't happy with losing it, but I didn't get that rage I used to. Inhale, exhale. Play better.

I ended up down only like $100 on the session after some more solid play, and after some more hands today have basically broke even.

Even with what I presume is an effect of the double VPP week (nits, regs, nits, regs), I think I can easily profit at 200nl. Now it's just a matter of getting my bankroll up to at least 5k before I make the move.

Another thing I've been considering, as always, is a full-on move to 6max. It's just so much more profitable, and requires so much more skill, that obviously it has a magnetic affect on me. If I do decide to make the move, I'll be doing a lot more sweats with Jay and whoever else wants to study, and I may hire a small-time coach as well. We'll see, I'll be on it in the coming weeks.

Double VPP week was a fail for me. I've been busy with random stuff like roaming the city during the day and the house being too loud and active to multitable properly, so I haven't managed even 4k hands this month yet. I'll be playing a lot more in the near future and of course will let you guys know how it's been going. Hope you're all running well.


Jay said...

Man, your so young and free you make me sick ;). Hey fwiw, Carpe Diem! If you don't know latin, google it. Seriously, play poker, profitz, invest, travel, skydive, do it all and do it now.

Enjoy yourself at all times!

Fredrik Paulsson: said...

You can do anything. Taking shots at $200NL isn't at all a bad thing; just be ready to move down if it doesn't work out. You're smart enough and work hard enough to make it.

The online poker scene may look very different in 5 years. But if you're one of the guys who work hard, you'll still be on top five years from now. Just don't let it outgrow you.

Also, my new blog is at and is desperate for linkage. Ahem.

ChuckTs said...

thought I'd linxed you Fredrik, sorry :)

err, umm btw I somehow managed to forget to mention your recent 'where does it stop' thread being a huge influence on my taking shots ;)

Zach said...

I read this post earlier and have been thinking about it a good deal, and basically concluded exactly what FP said. If you really want to make it long-term in poker the goal has to be to not be satisfied with making money beating donks, but also beat the "good" players. I believe I said something to this effect when you said that 100nl required more table selection. The way around there being good players or everyone being good is to work to be better than they are. In 6 months I've gone from not doing great at 10nl to beating 100nl. The overall average poker player will not progress that fast. There are a ton of players out there getting better, but we are as well, and with CC as a tool (not to mention Stox) we've got a step up. I'd hate to rely on 2+2 as my primary forum for getting better.

Realistically in 5-10 years you might not be good enough to beat the game. But there's nothing you can do other than work to be the best you can. But the one thing you can find comfort in is that humans overall as a rule are very lazy and think they're better than they are at things. So as long as you don't fall into that trap, never settle for good enough, and work as hard as you can to be as good as you can be, you've got a shot at being at the top no matter how good other people are getting.

Of course that's still no reason not to have a backup plan, and especially in the event that it becomes illegal, I agree you should definitely have a backup plan. btw I've made similar comments only it wasn't about working, it was dressing up. Always joked that I wouldn't work anywhere I couldn't wear a T-shirt and shorts to :).

Sorry this is getting long, but one last question, how would you say 200nl is different from 100nl? Is it just more regs and more aggression/moves, similar to the 50-100nl difference? I'm considering taking a shot in the next month or so at 200nl as well.

GunslingerZ said...

I've been skydiving ChuckT, and it's TOTALLY worth the extra money to have your own parachute, as opposed to going tandem. It will definitely be the coolest thing you have ever done. Also, the place I did it had a guy jump with us with a video camera on his helmet for an extra $80 or so, and it was worth twice that to be able to watch it for years to come.

Good luck in the future. You've got a good mindset about everything, that will go a long way towards helping keep your game where it needs to be.

kerouacsdog said...

Chuck, great post mate, 'fraid to say I havent read much of your blog, and feel quite guilty about that.
Sorry to hear things arent going too good away from poker, but if you get a chance, then go travelling, mate, breathe the fresh air, wake up in a tent at 5am to watch the sunrise, go to bed when it gets dark, etc, poker's always going to be here for you bud.
I'm trying to improve my game, lately, and move up, i like 1c/2c, but i wanna see how far I can go, longterm, aka the peter(Irexes) principle.
But all with careful BRM
Good luck,

chainfire98 said...

Hey chuck, been reading your blog for about a week now. You seem to be one of the top players on CC. I respect your game and what you bring to the community. Good luck with your turning point and the decision you will soon have to make. Hope to keep learning from you, Chainfire98

bw07507 said...

Chuck I really hope things work out ok for you in the future, but I have a feeling they will. You're obviously a smart guy and I think if you wanted to you could always play poker for a living since u seem to be studying/improving constantly. Have fun skydiving and gl in the future, no matter what u decide to do.