Thursday, July 21, 2005

Mid-stakes snob?

I think I'm becoming a bit of a live mid-stakes snob.

Often times I will find myself at a low limit table $3/$6, $6/$12 while waiting for a seat in a bigger game. I've noticed that I'm starting to have pet peeves.
- dealer incompetence (misdealing, not following the action, misreading the cards at the showdown, burn and turn prior to the completion of action, not noticing incorrect number of chips, etc). The cardroom tends to put the less experienced dealers on the lower limit tables, and there is an enormous difference in skills between a good dealer and an average one. A bad dealer really poisons the experience.
- slow players. Some players frequently take 10 or more seconds (and sometimes much more) to act when there is virutally no decision to make, not realizing it is their turn to act, not following the action, etc.... Players at the mid stakes tables are almost always experienced players, and since everyone is experienced, the table won't tolerate a slow player (although thinking for a moderate period of time for an obvious tough decision is perfectly okay). This can also be influenced by the competency of the dealer who should be working to keep the action flowing smoothly (verbally repeating players' actions, like raises, reraises, indicating it is a certain player's turn to act, etc)
From my one Vegas poker experience, I did encounter a much larger percentage of slow to act players who obviously had little or no experience - the Tourist. I certainly understand the importance of being nice to the Tourist. I can put up with slow-to-act players if they are bad enough, but I do get annoyed when a rock constantly slows the game does.
- acting out of turn. It is much more common for low stakes players to act of turn, and this can often have an influence on the outcome of a hand. It is just disrespectful to others to act out of turn.
- exposing cards. I have found that it is only slightly more common for players to expose cards in the low limit vs mid-stakes limits. Interestingly, some of the players at $6/$12 who most frequently expose their cards are small stakes pros that expose their cards out of frustration postflop. It is amazing inconsiderate, and I really resent them because they act so selfishly. They are relatively good players for that level, but they don't show any consideration for anyone but themselves.
- table coaches: seem a little more common at low stakes games than midstakes games.

Live poker is definitely more enjoyable than online, but sometimes these factors spoil the experience.

Okay, enough bitching and complaining for today....

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