Friday, January 06, 2006

Sklansky, Melmuth, Miller-My New Gods

I'm reading and applying Sklansky's, Melmuth's and Miller's book on small stakes poker and have been doing pretty well over the past two days. I've only really digested the pre-flop section (and not completely, either) but I think it's helped me improve my game from "hopeless donk" to "average donk." What it's done for me:

1. Got me to start evaluating the table and the players, trying to find weakness and poor play.

2. Made me stop cold calling. I didn't even know this was a bad thing. This was a major leak for me that's now plugged up.

3. Helped me become more disciplined with folding A-rag, J-t, and other unprofitable hands.

I can't wait to start digging into the post-flop portion of the book.

I still hold onto hands way too long, and I find myself forgeting to work out pot odds after the flop (pretty smart when playing limit poker, huh?) But, I guess that's why people say "practice makes perfect."


On the writing front, the last few weeks have been moribund. I've gotten a lot of rejections and haven't done one bit of writing. Not a word. I made it to the quarter finals in the fourth quarter of the 2005 L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Contest, which apparently is the top 10-15%. I'm not entirely sure if I should be pleased with that or not.

One bright spot is that Chimeraworld #3 will be out on January 16th. I'll be able to see my story in an actual book. It can be bought at Also, I'll have another story out in April or May of this year called The Liquid Laughter Project: Medicine Show.

I'm not sure if I'm just burnt out or if I've truly dropped this hobby. That's how I am regarding hobbies- a passionate serial monogamist. Hot fires burn fast, as they say. Here's list of my hobbies over the past ten years. Keep in mind that each one consumed my life and I devoted all my free time (and money, in some cases) to pursuing it, only to eventually drop each one and have no further interest in it whatsoever.

1. Brewing Beer (actually became a brewer, which turned out poorly)
2. Panning for Gold (Don't ask)
3. Golf
4. Fishing
5. Writing (most successful and satisfying hobby so far)

The only bright spot about my abandonment of writing is that I can see myself returning to it someday. My imagination hasn't gone away- I think the tank is dry and I'm loathing the daily grind that needs to be done to write successfully. The question is- how long will poker last? At least as long as I'm winning!


More kidney stone news: I'm going in for more surgery in February. This is the invasive procedure that involves, involves insertion of a long tube through the logical orifice, through the bladder, and up the uretor almost to my kidney. The doctor was happy to give me the following qualifications as well.

1. It may not be successful and may have to be repeated.
2. I'll have to have a stent in my uretor, successful or not, for a few days. There's a string that will come out of my little buddy, which they will use to remove the stent. "Uh, doctor, I will be put under for that, right?"
3. After assuring me that I could have an epidural instead of general anesthesia, to avoid the disaster that happened the last time, he started hedging, saying that it would be up to the anesthetist. He said he didn't think there would be any problems this time, however. I'm glad he's so confident.


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5:27 AM  

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