It‚Äôs seriously one of the best feelings in the world.
You‚Äôre online. You‚Äôve followed pot odds and instincts to decimate the stack of some drunken/stupid/raging rounder. Then, as you‚Äôre counting your virtual chips, the assault begins:
‚Äú**** you!‚Äù ‚ÄúI hate this site!‚Äù ‚ÄúRiver stars!‚Äù ‚ÄúNice catch ******‚Äù ‚ÄúGo buy a lottery ticket!‚Äù ‚Äú******* *******!‚Äù
In poker, does it get any better than this?
Reading a recent CBS News article on the cleaning up of tournament poker, I was reminded of all the rake rage I‚Äôve witnessed at online tables.
For good players, online poker should be like shooting fish in a barrel. Yes, playing online can sometimes drive me up the freaking wall, and yes sometimes I want to jump out my window and fall four stories to the cold, hard cement below. Why? Why? Why do you limp in early position to eventually call my pre-flop raise with A-2 and hit an Ace on the flop when I have K-K? Why?
But I keep reminding myself that over the long haul, if you play a solid game, you‚Äôll make money.
Still, regardless of how correct your decisions are, someone is bound to go off on you for taking a pot from them every now and then. And it never stops being hilarious.
A week or two ago I was playing on what I feel to be the most ‚Äúreal-life-like‚Äù site, Poker Stars. I say this because seldom do you encounter some all-in kamikaze pilot from Scandanavia, and the blind structure is slow enough where you‚Äôre allowed to actually play cards for awhile and build a stack. Plus, the verbal berating I‚Äôve seen on other sites is at a minimum on Poker Stars (probably due to the early crack-down on verbal berating in the chat feature).
Except for this one game‚Ä¶
I‚Äôm playing a 6-person SNG, blinds are up to 25-50. UTG limps. Folds all around. I‚Äôm small blind with a suited K-Q. I‚Äôm always suspicious of an UTG limp on Poker Stars. On other sites, the UTG limp could just mean some suited connector or A-x, but Poker Stars mid-level SNGs typically has more sophisticated play, so I just call, thinking the guy has Aces or Kings. I had been very aggressive up until this stage pre-flop, so maybe the guy was trying to trap. The big blind checks as well.
The flop hits J-T-x with two of my suit. I check. The BB checks. And as I suspected, UTG bets, but instead of an attempt to win the pot then and there, he just (virtually) moves a paltry sum in front of him (not even close to pot-sized). I call. BB calls. Turn is another x, not my suit. I check. BB checks. UTG bets yet another paltry sum, far below pot and keeping it far worthy for me to keep calling him. BB bails at this stage.
Then, for me, the money card strikes on the river: Ace.
Since I had put this guy on Aces or Kings, if he had aces, since no other cards on the board were paired, I figured my straight would rake most if not all of his stack (actually, most, since he was chip leader at the time). I bet the pot, and UTG moves all in. I call. He flips over his set of Aces.
Then the assault begins. This guy was just raging, slamming me for ‚Äúchasing,‚Äù telling me to ‚Äúkeep that kind of play up,‚Äù etc. etc. You‚Äôve heard it (or typed it) all before. I hate chatting online (and often have it disabled anyway), but I couldn‚Äôt resist. Almost like a teacher to a dumbass petulant student, I explain pot odds and how he kept the price right for me to call. He asks, ‚ÄúAnd who are you?‚Äù
I type: ‚ÄúI‚Äôm the guy with all of your chips.‚Äù
Man this dude went off. ‚ÄúNot for long you ****** *******!‚Äù It continued for another few minutes until he went all in pre-flop with 8‚Äôs to my Q‚Äôs.
I type: ‚ÄúNot for long? 4ever!‚Äù
Until I won the SNG, he did not leave the table, spewing venom the whole time.
And I loved every second of it. Because really, he‚Äôs just mad at himself. I had been very aggressive at the table, raising a lot pre-flop, so his UTG limp was OK if he thought I‚Äôd re-raise from the small blind. He could pounce then. But I limped, he kept it cheap, and his chips helped me cruise to a win. The mental picture of this guy all pissed off yelling at his screen and typing expletives is just too damn funny.
While this is a rarity on Poker Stars, I‚Äôve seen the verbal sparring on Noble Poker and Wallstreet a bunch. Never any racial epithets like the CBS article talks about (in this case, an assumption that since the writer was from DC, that he was a N-word). But on Wallstreet, where my ‚ÄúChops‚Äù screenname I guess screams ‚ÄúAsian!!!,‚Äù I got so many unprintable verbal attacks it would make the Aristocrats look like Bambi.
While the racial slams are never appropriate, I hope the poker world isn‚Äôt cleaned up TOO much like the article discusses. Sure, eliminating f-bombs from televised poker (
And I ******* mean that.