Mean Gene
Mean Gene
Pittsburgh's most decorated poker blogger, which I admit is like being the best shortstop in Greenland

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My Articles

Presto, the Arlo, & the Hammer
An Online Code of Conduct
The Ethics of Ratholing
"The Professor, the Banker..."
"Ace on the River"

My Columns

Lose the Shades
If You Can't Say Something Nice
Whither the Kicker
The Lady is a Champ?
Covering the WSOP (or not)
Statistics, Luck, and Poker
Poker and New Orleans
Managing a Bankroll
How To Tell A Bad Beat Story
Telling Lies
The Power of Poker Tracker
Advanced Card-Handling

My Greatest Hits

5 Things To Do Before I Die
Cafeteria Nostalgia
Mean Gene's Dubious Dating Tips
Poker and Business?
There's No Such Thing As Luck?
Isabelle, Je t'adore
No Shirt No Shoes No Service
Well, The Food Was Good
Good Morning, Mr. Matusow!
The Weekend of our Discontent, I
The Weekend of our Discontent, II
Books That Left Their Mark
Ode to a Fish Sandwich
Bill Simmons Ain't the Poker Guy
The Sports Guy Still Ain't the Poker Guy
Again, The Media Tackles Poker
Five Years After 9/11
Hitting Pretty Girls in the Face
Sixth-Graders Suck

Fellow Poker Bloggers

Guinness and Poker
Cards Speak
Tao of Poker
Up for Poker
Boy Genius
Chris Halverson
Poker Grub
The Fat Guy
Todd Commish
Poker Works
Bill Rini
Bad Blood
Love and Casino War
Double As
Lion Tales
Paul Phillips
Daniel Negreanu
Poker Nerd
Poker Nation
Poker in Arrears
Human Head
Sound of a Suckout
Chicks With Chips
TP's Table Talk
Royal Poker
This is Not A Poker Blog
Chick and a Chair
Go Be Rude
Poker Cheapskate
Poker & Other Stuff
Seven Two
Musical Poker
WPBT Online
Isabelle Mercier
Cardschat Blog
Amy Calistri
BJ Nemeth
Annie's Blog

Poker Sites

Cardschat Poker Forum
Barstool Sports
Card Player
Internet Texas Hold-Em
Poker Pages


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    Monday, July 24, 2006

    When the Bough Breaks; or, This Ain't No Motherfucking Plane!

    After some early-morning running-around and an early exit from a SNG (I'll spare you the ghastly bad beat story) I decided to lay out in the hammock for a bit. It's a beautiful day, and how many more chances will I get to enjoy lying in my back yard? In 18 days, it won't be my back yard.

    So I'm lying out there in shorts and sunglasses, re-reading Kitchen Confidential for the 50th time. I mentioned the other day I saw a groundhog prowling around the backyard, but no sign of him today. I lay out there, soaking up the sun, watching the omnipresent hawks soar overhead...when I heard rustling from the other side of the fence.

    Rustling. No big deal--there are bunnies and squirrels around, they don't bother me. And there's a neighborhood cat who stops by every so often. No biggie. Even the groundhog wouldn't faze me. I'm bigger than he is.

    The rustling got louder, and I turned to see what it was. I was lying just ten feet away, and the noise was loud enough to get my attention. I saw that a tree branch was leaning way over, almost to the ground. I looked up the branch, to see what it was that was making it bend, but there wasn't anything there.

    And then the branch fell to the ground. And in that split-second I figured out what was making the branch bend.

    The branch bent itself.

    Because it wasn't a branch.

    It was a snake.

    It was the Biggest Goddam Snake I've Ever Seen That Wasn't On Goddam Animal Planet. It wasn't as thick around as my thumb--it was as thick around as my wrist. I heard it slither a bit through the underbrush, at which point I exited, stage left. I'm no Jeff Corwin--I don't get a woodie fucking with the slimier of God's creatures. I figured it was a good time to go back inside. I need to complete my unemployment filing online. Later I have to trim the hedges and destroy the yellow jacket hive in my front yard. I'll be outside plenty later on. When the snake's gone.

    I'm sorry, I have to get this off my chest--I'm playing in a SNG, about the fifth hand in I'm dealt QJ and with four limpers I decide to call. The blinds call too and the flop comes J-J-6. Good flop. The small blind checks, and the big blind goes all-in--he bets T1200 into a pot holding T120. Well, I gotta call, so I do. I can't imagine he has AJ or KJ, nor pocket sixes. I gotta be good here. And, in truth, I am--he turns over pocket fives. For the life of me, I cannot see the logic in this. You're risking all your chips in the hopes that none of the other five people at the table have a jack. If one of them does, you're down to a two-outer for your entire stack. If no one does, all you pick up is T120. It's about the worst play imaginable.

    Of course he rivered the five and I was down to T200. I doubled up with AK, doubled up again with AK, and after that hand won the blinds with AQ and aces. The very next hand I'm dealt pocket nines and I raise the fourth hand in a row. The big blind calls and the flop comes jack-high. I should've just gone all-in, as my pot-sized bet left me committed anyway. He re-raises me all-in and I call. I figure him for jacks, or AJ at least. No, he has A-9. He had to know I'd call. What could he possibly beat? I couldn't believe it. Nor could I believe it when he went runner-runner to make a higher flush than me and put me out. I love poker. Nearly as much as I love snakes.

    UPDATE: I said I had to trim the bushes and destroy a yellow jacket nest. I did them in the wrong order. To be fair, I didn't know there was a nest in the one railroad tie that helps form the wall along my driveway. Two stings later, I know. Got nailed twice on the ankle, and it hurt like a bastard. Felt the first sting, that hurt, but the second one was really a bitch, and the damned wasp was still attached to my ankle, struggling to pump the poison in as it's wings fluttered and it's guts poured out all over the place. Awesome. So now I have ice on my ankle and murder on my mind. I have a full can of Raid at my side, Wasp/Hornet formula. Gonna get medieval on their asses...if there was advanced chemical warfare back then. get this widget Please visit Pokernews site for more poker news, poker strategy articles or poker rules.

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