Friday, March 24, 2006

Yo, Busyness

Assorted deadlines converging leave monkeys with little time to babble in their online diaries, much less to actually play poker. I did manage to place 4th in a 180 person SnG earlier on Stars today, and just took 1st-2nd-2nd-3rd in my last four $60 SnGs, so I guess I can't complain.

Them SnGs is swingy. Not that that's news to anyone, not even myself, but there you go. I managed an 0-12 stretch earlier in the week, which isn't much fun, and actually hard to pull off, as I imagine I'd have monied in at least one of those if I'd just closed my eyes and mashed the all-in button every fourth hand. But nay, I managed to savvy my way to a 12 game losing streak, utilizing all my mad poker skillz.

It's funny how certain beats get to you more than others. My "favorite" bad beat of late is holding something like A10 versus A7 and, of course, the 7 comes on the flop, and every ten in the deck is conspiculously absent, at the donkey show in Tijuana. It's kind of dumb as I don't mind it at all if they have K7 instead, but something about the "dominated" nature of the first one drives me nutso, even though the card that goes with the 7 is pretty meaningless.

CC's been posting some good stuff about relationships and poker, detailing all of the degenerate stuff lots of us would rather hide in the closet. By and large, I'm very, very luck when it comes to managing poker and married life, mainly due to us being pretty much on the same page.

Probably the biggest issue has been the most obvious one, as far as the sheer time that poker sucks up. I didn't do a good job at the beginning as far as explaining the nature of poker, and that it should be viewed more as a part-time job instead of straight-up degenerate gambling or playing Civ4 for three days straight. ScurvyWife just saw me spending many hours in front of the computer, seemingly occupied and having fun, but spend an increasing amount of time doing it.

If I had to pick one single thing that helped address that, it was coming up with a game plan that involved regular deposits from my poker winnings into our savings and brokerage account. ScurvyWife has no real desire to know how much I'm up or down in a given month, so it wasn't a matter of accounting for my play, down to the penny, and somehow justifying the time spent. She just wanted to see money going into savings or stocks. Once that started happening on a regular basis she was more than happy to see all the pokering as something more than just silly addictive personality traits.

While a small part of me rebelled against that (mainly because it made me feel like I was playing under-bankrolled at times, as any reloading would have to come out of savings), I have to admit it's been a very good thing. As much as I'd like to pretend that I'd get more utility out of the money if it remained in my bankroll, it's just not true. At least not when you roll a chunk of the money into oil and gold stocks at opportune times in the last few years.

All that said, yeah, I'd be lying if I claimed poker doesn't add some stress to our lives. It's a small, petty thing, but it drives me absolutely nuts sometimes when I'm playing in a big online tournament, make it very clear that I'll be busy for a chunk of the day, do everything to prepare for that to make sure ScurvyWife is good to go, only to end up having to have a conversation in the middle of the tournament about how crappy last week's OC episode was, because she's completely bored and apparently has to discuss that, right then and there, even though I'm hiding in the office with the door barricaded.

I'm also guilty of letting things slide, especially on the weekend, as far as assorted chores and what-not. I get all the basic stuff done but larger tasks like renovating the kitchen and guest bathroom just have no chance at all of seeing the light of day, when I'm playing lots of poker. It's not been an issue, relationship-wise, but it bugs me, on a personal level.

All in all, though, I think we've done a pretty good job of incorporating and tolerating the poker monster in our lives. We'd probably be happier as a whole if poker disappeared entirely, but the same could be said for things that ScurvyWife is into that bore me to tears. Such is life, I suppose.


Alan said...

When I was a kid it seemed like all of my friends dads spent all of their time building RC airplanes or carving wooden birds. Maybe you could quit poker and spend just as much time doing that.

Alan said...

That was completely intended to be a facisious comment. Point being that there is no reason enjoying poker is any worse than those other activities.

jjok said...

Man, I agree with you on all levels. It's a tough balance, and there are things you miss out on (like renovations as you said), but it's a hobby. Enjoy it....

CC said...

Thanks for the shoutout, scurvy. Let me know if scurvywife would be interested in emailing her thoughts to me. I'm planning to post some wives' comments next week (I'll keep them anonymous to protect the innocent/guilty). I've had a couple already, and they are really pretty interesting. Have a good weekend.

C.L. Russo said...

I hear you about the house projects thing. We're busy almost all the time and the little time I do have, I'd much rather see flops than paint walls.

Kudos on putting your winnings into your investments-put that money to work for you, dammit!