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Tuesday, August 29, 2006 

Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder

So I've been absent from the poker scene for quite some time now, save for the once-in-a while invitation to a home game or tournament. I go visit the northside poker place and i'm greeted by people (who i used to see literally every single day) as if i was gone for ages. Most of my poker buddies have noticed my absence from games that i would always play before without fail. I've also been declining invites almost everyday to play poker too.

I myself couldn't believe i could turn down an invitation to a poker game. I've gone a long way from last year and even early this year when i played every single day and all i could think about was poker poker poker, and more poker. Last year, when i had the chance to get into the poker business and play a part in the local poker scene with some good friends, i happily quit my somewhat lucrative (although sucky) job with the country's top real estate developer. THAT was how much i loved the game. I've always dreamed of doing something i truly love for a living, if not be a part of the "business" of it. When we opened up the first professionally run private NLHE card club in the RP, i was ecstatic. It was a dream come true for me to be involved in something i love doing and at the same time make some cheddar doing it.

So what happened?

Maybe it's what they call burnout? Maybe it's also because i burned through most of my bankroll on a 3-month losing streak early this year. Maybe it's because i suffered from a severely painful sore throat for more than one month because of smoke inhalation from too much time in the poker rooms, or that i've gained 20 pounds from all the months of inactivity. Maybe it's because sometimes, just sometimes, it isn't fun anymore. You know something's wrong when things are not as enjoyable as they used to be.

So i decided to take time off from poker (and give my aching wallet a big break hehe) and focus my energy on other things. In this process, i've rediscovered life before poker. I've been spending about 4 times a week at the gym now. I've also touched base again with old friends from college and high school (although theyve now learned to enjoy poker because of me hehe). I've realized that i'm really not missing much by not playing as often as i did before. I can still play, and i still do, but i dont make it a priority. I used to decline invites to birthday parties or get-togethers just because i have a game to play that day. Now it's the other way around. And the beauty of it is, it makes me appreciate the game even more.

Don't get me wrong, i'm not quitting poker anytime soon, or anytime in this lifetime at all. Nothing can beat the rush of making the final table of a big MTT, or flopping the nuts and getting bet into by multiple players. There's nothing like peeling your hole card on the big blinds after a raise, re-raise, and seeing Black Aces smiling back at you. Raking in a huge pot. Pulling off a HUGE bluff on the river after firing on the flop and turn. Laying down a monster and seeing that someone had a better hand. Ahhhh. Nothing like it at all.

I'm probably going to concentrate more on online poker once i get a substantial bankroll again, and maybe stick to the big MTT's if i'm gonna play live games. The pioneers of our local online poker scene has paved the way for others to get an idea of what's possible. I'm also gonna spend less time in the smoke filled rooms and look for more non-smoker friendly games hehe. I'll probably be back in the business aspect of the game too, maybe be more active running tournaments and games like i did before, or maybe even get a regular poker gig in the future. Need something to sustain the bankroll in case it takes a hit again hehe.

Overall, i havent lost my faith in what Poker can achieve here in the RP. There's really nowhere to go but up. Everything is improving by the day, and each game gets better and better structure-wise, quality-wise, and pot-wise. There's a lot of things in store for us in the very very near future. By US, i mean the poker community. I'm very exicted about some things that are going to happen soon , big things. By 2007 we're gonna have more poker action than we ever dreamed of here in the RP, both online and live. Can't wait.

Watch your back!


off topic...

I've heard rumors of a poker game that's more like "High Stakes Poker" but in Pesos. hehe. If it was true, I won't be surprised. Seven-Figure Buy-in anyone? ;-)

Wouldn't be surprised with a million peso buy in either. There are a lot of people who can handle that kind of money, just take a peek at the high stakes baccarat tables...

And yeah, that's one good thing about online poker - no smoked filled rooms. It can really get bad specially at the northern area poker place. Sometimes I feel like I'm trading 1 month of my life everytime I go there...

but but but... fine I'll go smoke somewhere else.....

Oi tama na vacation bro!! I went on a poker break too. 2 days and running... laro na uli ako mamya hehehe.

Oh and your title doesnt seem true. My girlfriend isnt exactly fond of me right now after my 50 day stay here in the US. 40 more days to go!

Yo mav, just read your comment on my precious post about a poker place in libis. I think I know what you were talking about pero para sure saan yun? you can add my ym para PM na lang for the exact place! thanks. yahoo id ko is dyonard_22.

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  • The best poker I've ever played has always entailed peace. A relaxed comfort. Eyes open, ears open, radar up. Absorbing my opponent's every message. Taking them as they come. Not mixing what those messages are with what I want them to be. It's like an aerial view. A view from above the myriad luck-dependent reactions of those many people who never gain such a peace. And when you gain that view, that peace - when you'd rather have the truth, no matter how disappointing, over a false hope, no matter how desirable - then you're a player. The hand you're on slips into a stream of thousands of other hands, no one of which, because of your lofty view, seems unduly important, no false fearful emotions rise within you. When you gain the peace of lofty perspective, you're a player, and when you're a player, you're free.- from "King of a Small World" by Rick Benett
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