Playing the averages

I went to the Grosvenor Victoria, a casino on the Edgeware Road, with James on Saturday. It was an interesting thing but I think I’m done with live poker for a little while.

Reasons being:

1) I don’t have the bankroll to play the averages. It may be a winnable game in the long term, especially as so many of the players don’t seem to really know what they’re doing, but you need to pay the rakes (an extortionate £3 per half hour for the 50p-£1 table of £25 NL holdem) and cope with what happens when the cards don’t come in. Which they didn’t at all on Saturday.

2) Poker’s fundamentally not that social a game. You’re trying to edge out your fellow players and part of that involves giving very little away about who you are and what you’re doing. I like the social aspect of the game played with friends and this neutered some of the fun for me.

3) I still haven’t worked out how to play cash game poker. It’s a very different beast to tournament poker which I vaguely understand after reading the Harrington books and 200 odd tournaments on Pokerstars, not to mention the odd live appearance at the (soon to be defunct?) Gutshot.

4) I don’t like the absence of women from the game. It’s somehow understandable from online poker (I guess you notice less), but the fact that the only women in the Vic were waitresses, cashiers, dealers and masseuses lent a slightly unnatural air to the evening for me.

Still, it was an interesting experience and definitely distracted me from the awfulness of Indy.