Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Readin', Writin', and Whorin'

Hmm. I'm not sure whether it's a good or a bad thing that the gambling gods don't seem to want to let me go.

After catching up with some poker blog reading yesterday (and you know, all of my day job work that had piled up when I was on vacation), I started poking around at assorted online casinos and forums, looking at signup bonuses and what-not. Yeah, I know, I know. But I'd never done the casino bonus whore circuit before, and a little reading convinced me to give it a whirl with my huge, strapping $100 bankroll.

So I created an account at PlanetLuck and plunked down my 100 bones. For the record, I have to say that playing blackjack online is one of the most mindless, brain-rotting activities imaginable. At least you get free drinks at B&M casinos, and there's some element of interaction with people, some element of fun. Hitting little buttons online and watching cards flip, at a constant disadvantage, is not my idea of fun.

That side, I cleared the WR requirements for the PlanetLuck bonus in an hour and cashed out $237.00. I suppose StarLuck is next, when the Neteller payment clears.

I also realized that I'd unknowingly been accumulating a Sands of the Caribbean casino bonus, based on deposits to play poker at Caribbean Sun. I had a little over $200 in casino bonus money just sitting there. So, much mind-numbing grinding
later, I cleared the WR with $170 or so left.

Long story short, the micro bankroll become a mini bankroll. All thanks to blackjack. Sweet Jebus, that's almost painful to type.

On the poker front, I've been reading a good bit. I took SSH on vacation with me, and got my signup bonus package from PokerNow in the mail, a free t-shirt and copy of Internet Texas Hold'em: Winning Strategies from an Internet Pro by Matthew Hilger.

I largely just skimmed it, but it seems a decent enough book. Most of it is pretty straightforward stuff, but he does include a lot of interesting hands in the quiz sections that end each chapter, which I always enjoy. As far as personal tidbits I picked up, I still undervalue certain draws in really large pots, especially gutshot straight draws. I also need to be more aggressive with re-raises, especially on early streets. Too often I see the specter of sets, just because someone check-raises me on the turn.

My only complaint about the book is that it really doesn't dwell on the aspect of Internet play that much, other than a few swipes here and there. In the end it's another decent hold 'em strategy book, advocating tight, aggressive play. Which isn't bad, just don't go into it expecting it to spend much time focusing on Internet play, despite the title.

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