Sunday, March 30, 2008

Not running good

I haven't done very well the last few Sundays. On Saturday, I had a couple of hours to blow and played a 5-table $50 sitngo. 45 players and I take it down. I got so lucky towards the end. I'm waiting to get lucky like that when the real bucks matter!

Today, I literally got knocked out at the same time in the two biggest tourneys of the day. I have pretty good emotional control but that's a hard swipe at the same time!

I did run very deep in the Cake WSOP satellite. Unfortunately, I finished 6th and they gave away 3 seats. I was awarded $720 for my efforts. I went out with KK vs A9s. I raised UTG 25% of my stack and the SB with a big stack pushed me allin. I'm a little surprised by his move as he had such a big stack and could just coast into 3rd place without taking big risks. Cake by far has the fishiest tourneys on the web. The players overall are just very bad.

I played 9 tourneys today and am mentally exhausted. I just don't see how some of these guys play over 20 in a day.

Still waiting for the baby :). I may not be playing for a while which could be a good thing given how crummy I have done lately.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Good vibes

You know how you sometimes just wake up and feel great. This is one of those days.

I think the main reason is that we are now finally ready and prepared for our new arrival in the next couple of weeks - Isabel. Last night I picked up my mother-in-law from the airport and she is really the last piece of the puzzle in having the house organized and ready to go have our baby.

I have been working my ass off the last month with the main objective of getting work stuff done before Isabel's arrival. I don't think I announced this before, but Albert, my good friend and Operations Manager of my website, left the company at the end of February. I am now back to managing the day-to-operations. It is adding a lot more work to an already hectic schedule, but I must say that I am enjoying it. I was really worried as I have been separated from the day-to-day operations for quite some time now and wasn't sure if I would be motivated in getting back into the details.

But the fact is, I love this stuff. I love ITH, I love the website, I love the business side of things and I'm having fun even though it is a lot more work. We have been making a lot of small little modifications to the site and most of them are now complete.

I have also worked hard on getting the hands book draft finished so that the copyeditor can get busy. He is busy and most of my part is finished. Between those two things, I feel good about the business side of things and finally feel "relaxed". Now I can concentrate on our little baby's arrival and enjoy the moment. But I'm sure after those first couple of weeks, it will be full-steam ahead as I crank out the book cover, typesetting, and printing of the book as well as move ahead with some other ideas I have for the websites.

Speaking of websites, we just launched, a sister site to You can see what my two favorites pasttimes are :). I love blogging and I am excited about both pokerwonks and winewonks and what they could do in the future. One thing we have planned is to expand beyond blogs and allow people to post articles, videos, and pictures.

ith - ready
winewonks - ready
hands book - more or less ready
house organized - ready
reinforcements arrived - yes! (my mother-in-law)

It's time to have a baby!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

ITH to be born soon!

Just a coincidence, our daughter, Isabel Teresa Hilger, will be born soon. I say coincidence because her initials are ITH. My first book and website are commonly known as ITH and now the same will be for my first daughter.

I haven't played much poker lately. Last Sunday my wife wasn't feeling very good so I watched the boys. The week before, I did get to play on Sunday, but missed the earlier tourneys and started at 6 with the FTP 750K. I final tabled the 100RB at Stars, but fell short in 9th place. I was chip leader with 11 players left and then was knocked out within one orbit in a string of hands.

The first I was in the SB with A3 and it was folded to me. My opponent had an M of 6. My thinking was if I pushed, I would only be called by better hands. If I limped, I might induce worst hands to make a move. The problem with that thinking is that my hand isn't that much of a favorite over any hand. I didn't really want to be involved in a big hand vs KJ for example. My opponent's stack size was really awkward for my hand no matter what I did. He pushed with A8 and I called and lost.

A few hands later I raise from middle with 99. The BB, a very loose and aggressive player reraises me practically all-in. I call, we get it allin on the flop and my opponent hit a Q with AQ.

2 hands later, an opponent raises before me, I RR with AKs, and some guy pushes over me with 77. I was practically pot committed so I can only assume that he thought I was on tilt, but even then I am not sure I understand his play. He won the race and I was out. Very, very disappointing finish as I thought I had a great chance at winning that one.

With the baby due soon, I'm not sure how much poker I will be playing. I am working hard on my websites and books trying to get everything organized before the baby arrives. The hands book is still on schedule for a late May release, but it might run into June.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Cooler Day

I had an incredibly frustrating day yesterday in the Sunday tournaments, striking out in all of them. It was one of those days where I just had a lot of really good 2nd best hands. QQ vs AA, set vs straight, trips vs straight, etc. It's frustrating to lose so many hands where I am behind, as you start to question yourself, but I think in most of them they were simply coolers hard to get away from them. And in all of them, I never sucked out on anyone. I really don't recall in 10 tournaments winning a significant hand where I was behind.

This week I'll be trying to wrap up the draft for the Hands book. One section is already in our copyeditors hands and hopefully I'll get him the rest by the end of the week. The goal is to have everything wrapped up by the end of the month as we are expecting a new baby around the beginning of April. Then in April and May I will wrap up All About Limit Hold'em, which is practically already finished, but the Hands book has taken priority for now. That will keep me busy until WSOP time. After the WSOP will we start wrapping up Hands, Volume II. Sometime in the Fall I hope to have a nice rest.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Home game and Omaha

I have been very busy the last couple of weeks working on the Pearl/Ape/Rizen book, so I haven't been playing much. However, I did get a game together at my house last Saturday night with a bunch of buddies. I think there was 8 of us and we played $.50-$1 NL. None of these guys are serious poker players except for Albert so it's more just an excuse to get together and drink a lot. For the first time in a long time, I finally managed to win in a home game winning about $100. I drank way too much, but I think I played very good laying down a lot of 2nd best hands. My only mistake of the night was when an opponent overbet the river by 3x pot and I just knew he was weak but folded my 2nd pair. He showed a complete bluff. You have to trust your instincts!

This week was PL Omaha week in the ITH Forums. A bunch of us decided to give a "new" game a try. I have played very, very little Omaha so know little about the game. The outs and odds give me a headache. But I did manage to win big both nights. We played .25-50 with a $50 buyin. I won $60 the first night and about $200 the 2nd night! It is a fun game but would take a lot of effort on my part to develop my skills and I just don't have the time right now. Maybe someday I'll put some effort into learning that game really well.

I do plan on playing Sunday and am feeling a little better health-wise so I hope I can have some great results.

By the way, we are working hard on the Hands book to hopefully get it out in late May.