Lord Admiral Card Club Blog

This weblog is a diary of the backstory to the Lord Admiral Radio podcast.

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Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Reading less

I like to read. I read everyday during my morning and evening subway commute and again before bed. At least I did.

Podcasting is stealing my reading time.

I have become addicted to listening to the myriad of podcasts throughout the world. The total list at ipodder.org hit 1000 this week and I suspect it will be ten times that within a year.

Mind you, not reading is not necessarily bad. There is an elitism associated with reading - an assumption that if I am reading I am filling my brain - but if I have headphones strapped to my head I am emptying it.

The truth is, of course, the many podcasts are more than entertaining - they are actually informative - but don't forget about the entertainment.

Apart from my own podcast, Card Club which is dedicated to Poker, I've also enjoyed podcasts about baseball, technology and well podcasts.

Here is some of what I am listening to:

Naturally I can't give up reading for good - one must read Sklansky's Theory of Poker at least once a year to keep sharp - but for now I am enjoying this new world of entertainment and my poker reading is on a small break.


Sunday, November 28, 2004

Where has the time gone?

Wow - I didn't intend to go four days before my next update. I planned to provide a post 5 or 6 days a week but the time seemed to slip.

Myself and much of the crew (uhm - make that informal group) have spent more time working on our radio webcast. Our third episode of Card Club is now out. My expectations are rising with every effort and now the poorer quality voice from Teamspeak is starting to bug me. The cheap mics we use also have too much feedback. I am also spending more and more time in post-production adjusting the amplification of my guests because of the inconsistency of their voice levels.

This whole podcasting thing was supposed to be easy but my anal retentiveness is kicking in.

I've noticed Checknraise.com is now open for business. I am looking forward to giving it a try. Bob Ciaffone is part of the CnR team and I know he is a gentleman so I wish him the best.

We have a few weeks before the next Lord Admiral game and I am taking a small break from internet hold'em (using the time for Lord Admiral radio) and the break is, I think, good for the game. I am even taking a break from reading (I've read over 30 poker books this year) in order to read a novel!! I expect the 7 stud Gold Chip event in February will see me come in refreshed and ready to go.


Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Not Guilty

The biggest trial in Las Vegas history - the Ted Binion trial - has reached its second verdict:
Rick Tabish and Sandy Murphy, once found guilty of murder, are now not guilty thanks to their second chance trial.

Those of us who have read Positively Fifth Street by James Mcmanus are familiar with this story and perhaps a little confused.

The trouble for me is many of us were educated on the trial through Mcmanus' good work. His book, however, started with a graphic depiction of how the two lovers killed Binion. Only after the description is complete does he explain it is his theory dramatized. Rather than starting with facts moving to analysis and then opinion Mcmanus goes the other direction. This is all perfectly ethical and appropriate for a novel like Fifth Street. My issue is many of us have made the mistake of using Fifth Street as our main resource.

Now I am intelligent enough to look at many different sources and apply my own opinion to a story. Even with this knowledge I find myself knee-jerk reacting to Binion trial news. My education began with a narrative depicting the murder and rather than starting from an emotional level field I've now got to fight to ensure I am objective.

This is not a criticism of an excellent book, one I recommend. It is just when I heard they were not guilty my first thought was: "Of course they are," and I don't know if that is me talking or Mcmanus.


Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Poker and other hobbies

We are hitting a quiet time in the Lord Admiral club now.

With no off-monthly in December our next game is not until late December. Things pick up in the first week of January when we have an amateur-friendly low buy-in 7 stud tournament.

I've also applied to have Card Club on Lord Admiral radio be listed in the ipodder.org directory but I haven't heard any response yet.

In the meantime efforts begin in Dead by Dawn and SWORD - which require an explanation I haven't the space to accomodate.


Sunday, November 21, 2004

Blogging for Newbies

I have been discussing blogging/how to blog/why to blog with a number of friends and family lately.

I promised to provide a link to an excellent discussion I heard about blogging geared towards a newbie audience.


This was from Bloggercon 3 and it is hosted by Rebecca MacKinnon. I recommend it for anyone considering starting a blog or just looking to find out more.


Lord Admiral Episode #2 is on the air

I have packaged and uploaded Card Club #2. Lord Admiral Radio's second ever podcast is now in cyberland.

I had hoped to interview our champ, The Man, Jimmy Q for this episode but I screwed up the timing and was out watching football at the local pub with Scotty Craps instead of being online like I was supposed to be. Apologies to Jimmy who I hope to interview this week for the next show. No apologies to Scott who won $10 off me for picking more winners than I did this fine Sunday.

Not only is the show uploaded but I've registered us with some podcast directories so it is possible someone other than the creators will hear our amateurish ramblings. I have no plans to leave my current employment which I heartily believe I am more suited to from a professional point of view.

There is no "off-monthly" in December so we are four weeks away from our next face to face. I expect CnR is starting soon (Nov 27 I undertsand) and I hope to use that as our internet "club site" for some private games.

I wonder if I can get a logo with a gold chip?


Saturday, November 20, 2004

Weekly Topics for Lord Admiral Radio

I recorded the round-table session with Mark and Jake for our weekly podcast.

Mark gave us an update on what is going on in Vegas including some advice on where to play if you are looking for a low limit game.

The three of us discussed some of the new books coming out, the new PPT and our opinions of some hands we've seen discussed.

I've also added the Haloscan scripts for trackbacks and comments.

I plan to have the podcast submitted tomorrow.


More Admirals in the Blogosphere

Brent Stacks has started a blog to call his very own. His homepage can be found here: brenthaynes.com. It should be a good read and I look forward to it as I've been enjoying Brent's writing since high school.


Friday, November 19, 2004

November Monthly -

I have just returned home from our monthly limit game. The whole thing seemed to be in a strange twilight zone where anytime someone starting winning or losing a small change would result in them returning to even.

Let me be honest, our game is small stakes. We only play $1-$2. We played these limits in college 10 years ago and we make real money now and have serious careers but for some reason we keep the limits light. Anyway - even with the light limits - the variance in stacks around the table was so low Mark looked around the table and said: "This seems to be a waste of time." Of course we'd all rather be playing than doing most other things - but it was odd how little things changed despite the money moving around the table.

I finished the "big" winner for the night - and I was only up $13 or so. A normal night the big winner aims to cash in with $50 and go home with more than $100. Our big loser covered his losses with a single green note. If the only purpose of the club was to take money from each other then we did waste our time. In truth of course, the competition for this group is enough to keep us happy. If heaven is a game of poker where you win every hand I don't believe hell is a game of poker where you lose every hand. I don't believe it because you would still get to play poker. I think anytime you can play you are lucky. Actually I think hell is when you are at the poker table and Jason has been assigned the table's shuffler - waiting for the hand to begin - now that is hell.


Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Monthly game and an interview with the Man

Two things are on the forefront of my pokermind today.

Firstly and most importantly our monthly limit-game is tomorrow night. These games are my poker life-blood and I enjoy them immensely. Only six seats have been claimed so we have a smaller turnout than usual but that doesn't matter. A good player needs to play and enjoy short-handed games as well as full ring games.

The other great thing about tomorrow is The Man, Jimmy Q, makes his return to the monthly game. Jim was a regular until employment duties with a televised national singing competition show required his full attention. It is nice to have him back.

Speaking of Jimmy he is also part of the second item on my mind. We've decided to register our Card Club podcast with the major podcast directories and so we're struggling with getting the right mix of internal clubs news (which frankly is the purpose of the show) and general poker news (which may interest anyone else - though I am not looking to quit my day job). We've decided that despite the limited audience the focus of the show is the club and therefore we have to get a discussion with Jimmy. Jimmy's poker background is not as well known as some of our more veteran players and I think a discussion with him would be interesting to his competitors. I'd also like to hear his side of some of the exciting hands that played out last week.

Good luck to everyone tomorrow.


Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Lord Admiral Radio - where to next?

After finishing my blog entry last night I dove into some of the poker blogs and newsgroups to cull information for our Card Club broadcast. Our premier broadcast was entirely focused on Sunday's big game. We'd like the next one to talk about more than our club and open it up to include topics from the poker world.

After some surfing I pencilled down some topics. I thought I had some good ideas and looked forward to sharing them with my partners if I could get them to listen.

Later in the night Stacks called me up. He is the show's producer. He got the role when I first proposed the idea of the show. "Sounds good," he said. "I'll be the producer." So my producer calls me up and explains he has some ideas for the show. We discuss some topics and approaches. "I am working on writing episode #2 right now," he explains. I point out that he doesn't even know the topics (hell, I don't even know the topics). He explains he doesn't need to and leave the producing to him. He is the one in showbusiness so I presume he knows what he is doing.

I get to work this morning and try to get Lord Admiral Radio out of my mind to work on things that I get paid for. After lunch I get a call from Omaha Jake. "Sean," he says. "I have some ideas for the show..." and it begins again.

So there it is, something I thought only I would have interest in seems to consume the waking hours of three of us! I've been provided advice on what to call the show, what topics to do, how much local/world time should be allocated and even how to stage it....and I admit I love it. I love the creativity required to make a show and enjoy it even more when I can share that energy with enthused people.

Now all we need are some listeners.


Monday, November 15, 2004

Poker Blogs - Fantastic Resource

We are in exhale mode after the weekend's game.

Responsibilities in other important hobbies require a little more work. Many are waiting for Omaha Jake and I to announce the new Dead by Dawn season. We announced today that that will start two Sundays from now (Nov 28).

I am also looking to spend some more time delving into the world of podcasting and Lord Admiral Radio. That means less time playing and reading poker - not that I am talking about an all-out abandonment in the whole game.

We still have the monthly game (next one this Thursday) and I am not missing that. My internet poker playing is slowing down. As a general approach I enjoy studying as I play. I read and review my hands from poker tracker and spent an hour studying for each hour I played.

Until recently I was putting in hours a day (even work days) fine-tuning my game. The levels I want to play on the internet ($5/$10, $100 NL) require at least a $400 bankroll - although $1000 would be better to get into the no limit games the way I wanted. Instead of dumping $400 into Paradise I decided if I was as good as I thought I was I deposit $40 in and build to $400 by winning. I am at $200 now (I did get as close as $370) and I am out of gas. The game became a grinding mathematical experiment at .50/$1.00. Many times I moved up limits but once a bad streak of cards hit I dropped again. Although my stats show I am a consistent winner it drains the hours out of my personal life. Many times I thought - "screw it I am depositing $200 more dollars" but in the end my ego won't let me put in a penny more.

So, sitting with $200 in the account I feel pretty good about the $160 profit in what is essentially a micro-limit game. The game and larger stakes will be there when I get back. Our monthly face to face game down at the club will suit me fine.

In the meantime I have been learning more about the blogging community. Despite my enjoyment of the internet I had, until now, never spent much time learning about blogs. As part of the new podcast project (Lord Admiral radio) I have been researching what is happening in the poker world. The usual sources are great but only today did I find out about all the poker blogs out there!

Some blogs are from regular players just talking about their games, some centre around clubs (like this one) and some are from people in and around the game. This last category provides all kinds of insights and topics on poker today! I've spent far too long today reviewing them all and taking it all in (I am using the Feeddemon aggregator - also a new experience).

So for the next little while time not spent working, or launching Dead by Dawn, or spending time with the lovely and patient Mrs. Cincinnati, will be spent perusing poker blogs and sites to find topics for our Card Club podcast on Lord Admiral Radio.

For those who are interested here are some cool ones I found:
OJ's Poker Blog
Daniel Negreanau's Poker Blog
Las Vegas and Poker Blog

There are a ton more but I need to spend more time reading before I get a good opinion.




Sunday, November 14, 2004

SHOWDOWN 2004 - Crazy Game of Poker

Hi All,

It is late Sunday night and I've spent the best part of today playing yesterday's tournament in my head and working on Lord Admiral Radio.

First the tournament - this says it all:

Congratulations to Jimmy Q - now known as "The Man".

Jimmy played a great tournament and deserves the win.

I spent hours today figuring out how to get Lord Admiral Radio off the air. It was important to me to get something out quick while the buzz was still going. I also wanted to provide a discussion for those poker fans who could not make it.

The first thing I had to figure out was how to play music and record it so the participants can hear - this was trickier than I thought. I could have done the whole thing post production but there is something cool about people hearing their lead-in music.

Once I got that down I had to figure out how to interview people and record their comments and the music. I found I could use teamspeak to record that conversation (at slightly lower quality) but it worked out very well.

We ended up blabbing so long the whole episode is an hour. Brent decided he was my producer and explained the format: I talk first and set up the topic - bring him on and then bring on another guest. Slowly include other people in the discussion until the topic is fully discussed. The great part is I don't have to worry about bosses, advertisers or keeping it to a time limit. The whole thing was pretty cool and I hope you take a listen.

Of course I recommend subscribing to Lord Admiral Radio through Ipodder but truthfully I suppose it doesn't matter how you enjoy it.

I have Monday off so I plan to update the webpage and begin work on Dead by Dawn. Jake and I don't want to let that drop and we have plans to get it kicked off shortly.

Bye for now.


Friday, November 12, 2004

Jake wins again

Well, I've just read that Omaha Jake finished 5th in the CnR final freeroll tournament. Three final table finishes in the last two weeks makes me wonder if he is the most underrated player going into tomorrow.

Jake's limit game has always seemed tight and passive at the table but he has clearly come out of his rock-shell in internet hold'em.

Then again his tournament experience at the LACC has been outstanding - to wit:



Lord Admiral Card Club Blog

Here is post #1 in the new Lord Admiral Card Club Blog.

I am typing this a little under 14 hours before we play the Big One for our 2004 champion.

Mark asked me earlier today who I thought had no chance to win? My answer was no one. You never know what is going to happen when you play cards - and our group has no one who does not belong at the table.

The next step for the club when this is done is Thursday's November monthly and the calendar for the 2005 events.

Well - there is post #1. We'll see how often I do this and whether or not it is worth the effort.