After bemoaning my too-tight tournament play I decided to mix up my game and play a cheapie 45-person tournament to see how I might do opening up my game a bit. It worked rather well--the deck hit me in the face, I bet big when I made hands and got paid off, and a few times I called all-ins with iffy cards and either was way ahead or my pot odds paid off for a change. I chipped up to about T12000 with the guy in 2nd spot only had about T4000.
Of course I blew it and went out 13th, but I didn't mind too much as I was getting tired and kept playing fast. Except for the 2 hands that killed me, which still bother me. I was dealt pocket nines, one guy went all-in, another called, and I called. The flop came 9-10-2 and I should've pushed to isolate against the all-in and at least guarantee the side pot. Instead I check, it gets checked around, and the jack on the turn give the other dude a straight. Brilliant. Then, still with T6000, I again hold nines and after betting the flop and turn the board makes a straight on the river. Guy goes all in, I call, playing the board, and he flips the seven for the higher straight. Normally I don't call there, but I wasn't playing normally. Or well, by that point. The guy taunted me a bit, which I deserved.
So after that mess I decide to play some quickly NL. And drop most of a buy-in when I flop top two with AQ and the other guy makes a set with his pocket sevens. The guy made several loose calls in the few hands I witnessed and I didn't think he had the set. Obviously. So I blew 10% of my bankroll on one hand, which sounds a lot worse than it is.
So, did I learn anything? Well, don't slow play, and I may get those words stenciled on my goddam contact lenses. And don't play when you're bored, tired, or distracted. I feel like a jackass, the moreso because I should feel that way. Self-loathing doesn't come as easily to me as it used to, which I guess is a good thing. 'Cause I smell like fish right now.