Thursday, June 12, 2008

A Little Bit of Everything

Motorcycle trip, live poker, pictures and maybe even some poetry if you're lucky--how about them apples?

I rode the ninja up to the cabin today. I was in dire need of a good motorcycle ride, and the trip up to the cabin was perfect. I checked the mileage when I rolled up to the cabin and the trip is just over 70 miles--35 miles on the freeway and 35 miles on windy two-lane highway. The freeway riding is fun, because traffic was moving along quickly, and the two-lane highway was a blast because I only got stuck behind a semi once, and I was able to pass him within a few minutes.

Because I was at the cabin, and my potlatch team is "Spear It!" this year, I tried to find some tree limbs to whiddle down into spears. I found a couple good stashes of fallen wood to use, whiddled a few "spears" and then left for more motorcycle riding. I'll likely be back up to the cabin on Sunday with the family, and there will be plenty of time to whiddle then. Good ol' whiddlin'

There is a mountain loop road up near the cabin, and I wanted to go check it out for future reference. I wasn't really sure what to expect, because I knew the Cascades had gotten some snow this past weekend. The cabin is only at 500ft elevation or so, but lies in a valley surrounded by mountains. This morning was mostly cloudy, so I could see the base of the mountains, but not the peaks.

I love it when clouds mask the true height of mountains. The way the clouds settled in today, the mountains rose from the valley, up about 1000ft, then became engulfed in clouds. With the cloud cover, you just have to guess where the mountains end, and I invariably look about twice as high as where the mountain peaks probably are. I couldn't shake the "Big Rock Candy Mountain" song in "O' Brother Where Art Thou" from my head:

The mountain loop road eventually changed from paved to dirt road, and I don't have much experience riding on anything but pavement with the ninja. Ninjas are meant to ride on pavement, but this dirt road was the smoothest dirt road I've ever been on. I fishtailed quite a bit, but besides the monster pothole or two that rocked me to my core, the road was a lot of fun to ride on. I didn't see a soul for about 20 miles on the dirt road until I came upon three other motorcycles stopped at a turnout.

They were low on gas, asked me if I had been on the road before. I hadn't, but I knew it was a loop, and we were close to the midway point. They said they would be able to go about five more miles before they would have to turn around and get gas. Lucky for them, about a mile later the road took a turn for the worse:

2008-06-12- Cabin Trip 007

2008-06-12- Cabin Trip 009

2008-06-12- Cabin Trip 013

Snow and motorcycles don't mix, as my Dad can attest to (ask him for the story next time you meet him). I headed back to town a bit disappointed about not being able to do the loop just yet, but my gloom was quickly lifted when the sun started to shine through the clouds on my way out of the forest. I was running low on gas myself, and after getting gas at the only stop sign in town, I had to go back to this park I passed by to take a few pictures of the mountains:

2008-06-12- Cabin Trip 016

2008-06-12- Cabin Trip 026

The blue sky reveals that the mountains do not actually rise to Olympus (darn!), but the lighting was really cool. I wish I had brought a disc and a buddy to toss with, then it would have been perfect.

It was still early, so I contemplated taking Jordan's advice and hit a casino on the way home for some live poker. I contemplated for the next 40 miles or so, and decided to go for it. It had been a long time since my last time playing live poker, I was due!

There were a handful of tables running at Tulalip, and I put my name on the 4/8 limit and 1/2 NL lists. I would have rather played No Limit, something I have only done once or twice live, but the 4/8 seat opened up first.

The first hour of play had me folding non-stop. The table was lively, and there was money to be won, but every hand was going to a showdown and I simply didn't get the cards or the flops to see showdowns with. I finally picked up a pot raising UTG six-handed with 99 and picked up the blinds.

A few hands later I get dealt KK in the small blind. Old guy who just sat down a few hands ago raises UTG, button calls, I repop it, which gets a few "Ohh??'s" from players not in the hand... UTG calls, as does the hijack. Flop comes a very nice uncoordinated all unders flop, and I bet out. Old man UTG calls, Button folds.

Turn comes the dreaded ace, but I have UTG on QQ-TT, with AK a possibility, but for some reason I doubt it. I bet out again and he just calls, so I am pretty sure I'm good. River comes a blank and I fire again, and he insta calls with... Jack-4... for J-hi. What?!?

If you've played low-limit live limit games, you know most of the old guys are the steadiest rocks out there. This guy just called the river with jack high. It was a huge pot and brought me back into the positive, but I went on to spew half of my chips over the next hour. There were a ton of limped pots, and I was getting more than enough odds to call with suited connectors and those dastardly middle pairs, but I just wasn't hitting anything on the flop, turn, or river.

I got 99 three times within about 20 minutes and the only time I won was the first time when the blinds folded to my UTG raise. The other two times the flop came all unders, which made my hands almost impossible to get away from. The first all-unders flop was against the same old UTG man from the last hand, and he ended up having kings this time.

The second all-unders flop I took with my nines was a brutal hand. Four of us capped the betting preflop and saw a flop of 2h,3h,4d.

Second to act across from me bet out and the three of us called. Turn came the 7c.

Same guy bet out the turn and the three of us called again. River came the nasty 5s.

Same guy bets out the river, guy to my right flat-calls and I fold. First to act check-raises the river and the other two players call.

First to act has 66 for the rivered straight.
Second to act flopped a set with 33.
Third to act rivered a lower straight with AQo.

I was surprised to see I was ahead preflop, but found it incredibly hard to get away from this hand before the river. I pretty much just spewed chips like this for two hours outside of the big hand with KK. Damn live poker.

Overall, a very fun day, and I can't wait to get more of these in during the summer :)

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Blogger RaisingCayne said...

Sounds like a great time MHG, nice write up. Glad you were able to get some pokerin' in too, good times! (Sorry you didn't get on the $1/2 NL tables, as in my limited experiences at the Tulalip I saw those as much more profitable options over those $4/8 limit 'lotteries'. But then again, I might just be a limit poker idiot, idk.)

Hit me up if you ever find yourself on the South side of the county.

5:11 PM  

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