Monday, January 26, 2009

Dr. Chako Hits A Good Ball (+follow up math question!)

Fresh off my Issaquah home game break evenness, I completely forgot to mention that Dr. Chako and I played racquetball Saturday afternoon. This marks the first non poker-related interaction with a Seattle area poker blogger, and it was good times. Before I get into the racquetball, I'd like to recap the math question from last post...

Dad backed me for the Issaquah home game for $20, and we agreed that he would get 50% of my profit. Schaubs answered $30, but said there was no mention of the buy-in, and Dr. Chako gave a bit more reasoning behind his answer, and hit the nail on the head with an "it depends" answer. I've asked a dozen people over the past 48 hours how much I should owe my dad if we agreed to 50% of my profit, and I have gotten the following answers: $30, $20, $10 and $0.

The follow up question is can you make a logical answer for each of their answers? All of their answers seem justifiable to me, and there are multiple answers I received with completely different logic, but ending up at the same dollar amount.

On to racquetball...

The doc plays in a weekly tournament at his gym and I'm pretty sure he runs all those guys around the court, too, so I don't feel too bad about getting shellacked. Doc won the first three or four games, then I think he picked up on the fact that I wasn't leaving the rectangular cube of death until I got a victory. He had places to be, people to do, so he toned his game down a few notches in our last game and let me squeak out a 16-14 victory.

I picked up a lot of tips from the good doctor, which I will put to good use against Tyler and the r-ball crew in Seattle. Offensive ceiling shots, service aces, back wall caroms--they won't know what hit them!

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Sunday, January 25, 2009

Issaquah Home Game (+math question!)

In class on Friday, Lee came up to me and asked what I was up to Saturday night. I didn't have anything going on, and Lee told me about a poker game his buddy Rob was hosting. Lee and I haven't done anything outside of class together, but in class we've played some online poker (during the long lectures) and we've done a few play-by-email chess games. I've been trying to hang out with my classmates outside of class as much as possible, and this sounded like a great opportunity to do just that.

We played two $20 SNG's, the first one with seven runners and the next with only four. In the first, larger tournament, I got a big stack early flopping top set with pocket kings and it holding against a flush draw. Play got down to Lee and I heads up, and he ended up taking it down. Four of the seven of us were game for another tourney, and Lee and I got into a big pot on the third hand...

I had pocket nines and raised it up from the small blind 2.5BB. Rob called in the BB and Lee had limped from the button and now called my raise. Three to a flop of 7h 9h Kd. I sneakily checked, Rob bet out about half the pot, Lee called, and I popped it to the size of the pot. Both called.

Rather large pot for the 3rd hand of the tourney, and I put one of them on top pair and the other on a flush draw. Turn made the board:

7h 9h Kd Ah

Crap. I wasn't happy with the heart, so I checked. Rob checked, and Lee bet half the pot. It was a big bet, and represented a third of my remaining chip stack, but I wasn't positive he had the flush. He could still have a draw or AK. I called, and Rob folded. River made the board:

7h 9h Kd Ah Kh

I viewed this as a "Gin!" card, and really hoped Lee had the flush. For some reason AK no longer scared me, and I pushed all-in. Lee insta-called. I showed my boat and Lee showed Qh4h for the "nut" flush. He was ready to scoop the pot when Rob pointed out that my boat beat his flush.

Lee flopped out of his chair and started writhing on the ground in pain.

"Noooo!!! When I saw that King I thought my Queen-hi flush was the best hand possible! God Damnit!!"

It was a nice suck--re-suck hand, but sadly I couldn't take my 2:1 chip advantage to the cleaner, and I bubbled 30mins later to break even for the night.


The most interesting part of the night for me was the backing arrangement I had with my dad. I needed $20 to play, and didn't have time to hit an ATM on the way to the game. He are the stipulations for the backing. Dad gave me $20, and we agreed that he would get half of my profit.

1st: $20 buy-in, I won $40 for finishing 2nd.
2nd: $20 buy-in, I won $0 for bubbling.

How much do I owe Dad, and why?

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Thursday, January 22, 2009

Teaching is Great!

I have a feeling this is going to be the first of many roller coaster posts about how teaching is GREAT! Then how teaching is the pits. Then how teaching is AMAZING! Then how teaching is the worst job in the world.

I had a fun day of student teaching today. I called in sick yesterday, slept until noon and felt like poop all day. Today I walked to school early and hacked up a lung on the way in, but made it. I investigated what math lesson the class was on today and glanced through the teacher's manual, altering it to include 10x more student interaction.

Math time rolls around after lunch, and we get into the lesson. The students are loving going up to the board and being in front of the class. I do a fairly good job of picking the other half of students I did not have time to call up to the front of class last week. The students are beaming, and I send them on their way to work in their student math journals. Every. Single. Kid. Finishes their math work for the day. Unheard of. A number of them come up to me and say how today was their favorite day of math all year.

Come home, get a little WoW action in, eat dinner, then play 2 hours of racquetball. Apparently the cold is long gone, because I felt fine at racquetball, and will get my 100 pushups, situps and frog squats in today. Yesterday was the first day since Thanksgiving that I have not done my pushups, but I think abstaining when I am sick makes more sense than going for the Guinness Book of World Records consecutive push up record... although I do like Guinness...

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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Stevens Pass Day 7: Picture Day and Fruit Cake Snow!

I headed up to the pass after school on Friday, solo. Chelsey warned me that the snow was bad on Monday, but I was not deterred. The sun was shining and I brought my camera in hopes of getting some good sunset pictures from the top.

I took Big Chief up to the Double Diamond chair, but just as I got to DD, the lift closed for the day. The lift operator suggested that I head back down on the groomer, because "Skiing off the groomers today is like skiing on last year's fruit cake." I was tempted to prove him wrong and drop down the bottom portion of double diamond, but I relented and hit the groomer. I strayed off course a few times to test the snow and the lift operator wasn't lying.

We had a ton of snow in mid-December, then it rained 13 inches in 48 hours, then it warmed up to 40 degrees. We had a weird weather inversion on Friday as well, where down in Seattle it was 35 degrees, but up in the mountains it was in the 40s--which did not make for good skiing. The snow is a mix of slush on top of ice. I forgot my ski goggles, but luckily did not need them in the sunny weather. I slip-slided my way down Tye a dozen times while I waited for the sun to set, but the sun set behind 7th Heaven, which means no good sunset shots. I did catch a parachute-skier lift off right as ski patrol was closing up the back side, so that was pretty neat. I also shot a few pictures for the ski lift math problem I posed a few posts ago. I'm thinking about adding visual aids to the math problem and trying to pose it to my class either this spring or next Fall :)

2009-01-16- Stevens Pass Sunset 011

2009-01-16- Stevens Pass Sunset 012

2009-01-16- Stevens Pass Sunset 081

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Jiggly Ta-Tas and Rock Hard Abs

Every real man knows the final step up the staircase that is manhood: the ability to jiggle your pecs by flexing.

Since Thanksgiving I have done 5,217 push ups and 3,082 sit ups. My A-cup pecs are now on full jiggle mode. When I look in the mirror after doing my 100 daily push ups and sit ups (I stopped adding one a few weeks back), I see Dee-Bo from "Friday" and "Next Friday" (also w/ Ice Cube) staring back at me, flexing his muscular pecs. I think there is an optical illusion taking place, but I can not be certain.

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Sunday, January 11, 2009

Portland = A Blur

When Andrew was up in Seattle for Xmas, he invited me on a trek down to Portland on the 10th of January for a weekend of debauchery and the Blazers game against Golden State. January 10th crept up on me, and I did not realize it was THIS weekend until about Wednesday. Interstate 5 closed down between Seattle and Portland due to the flooding on Thursday, and we weren't sure if the trip was still on until Friday afternoon, and checking the WSDOT cameras--finding a clear and open I-5.

I just emptied my pockets from the trip and found:
1) a box of matches
2) a sheet of paper for a free Taco Bell Chalupa
3) an empty wallet

A group of seven made it down Friday night, myself included, and we went out to a bar a few blocks from Andrew's house. We met Andrew, Rebecca and BAM at the bar, and they had already run up a $60 tab on appetizers and $2 well drinks... I didn't even bother trying to catch up. Talk of some sort of egg-meat-fried concoction at a different bar had us changing locations. At the new bar (which ended up being out of said concoction), BAM and I played cribbage with the pub crib board and cards, and the server handed me a box of matches. I was not entirely sure what to do with the matches, then realized there were no pegs for the crib board. Matches as pegs work very well, and definitely spice the post game losing tantrums up! (I won)

The free Taco Bell Chalupa came from the Blazers game. After an abysmal first quarter, Brandon Roy, Lamarcus Aldridge and Greg Oden came back and put up 115 points against Golden State's 100. For eclipsing 100 points, the Blazers won their fans free chalupas. When Portland hit 97 points, the jumbotron started flahing CHA-LU-PA! and the fans started going crazy. It was very annoying. The basketball game was a five point game with four minutes left, and I was trying to watch the fucking game! The chalupa was good though, and tided me over until breakfast the next day at 2pm.

My wallet started the trip with $80. $10 went to gas, $25 went to the bball ticket, and $40 went to food and drinks, and the most important $5 was spent at Ground Kontrol!

I felt like I was in a weird vacuum the entire trip, and time zoomed forward. There did not really seem to be a plan besides the basketball game, and we materialized at Ground Kontrol after kicking the soccer ball around the city streets. We spent an hour kicking the ball at the Lloyd Center park. We watched the Eagles beat the Giants, we watched Blade: Trinity, and we watched half of Predator 2. It would have been nice to see Stacey while I was in town, but the day and a half lasted about two snaps. I brought my laptop down and didn't even get a chance to open it!

Made it back to Seattle at 5:40pm tonight. Hit the bathroom, then headed out to Mary Ann and Kristy's for some Settlers of Catan with Eddie and the ladies. I got decimated in Catan, then got brutalized at the Game of Life. Looking forward to some more fun game nights with those fun people.

Not really sure what this week has in store, but looking forward to being busy with school!

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Thursday, January 08, 2009

Seattle Blogger Home Game!!!!

It is my turn to host.

Saturday, February 7th, fun starts at 7pm and goes until the wee hours of the morning. Beds are available, hot tub is available, beer is available. Comment if you are interested in coming over for some poker and/or staying the night and I'll add you to the email list.

Doc and I talked about adding an Omaha Eight or Better tourney into the mix, and I would like to either do that, or a Badugi tourney. I'm thinking a Badugi, O8, or a mixed tourney at 7:30pm, then a hold'em tourney after we finish up the "other" tourney.

Waffles and The Sister are also invited, in my attempt to make Waffles' online tryst desires come to fruition. How can he resist a free place to stay with a hot tub and sexy females?


Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Back to School

Here's my take on the math problem from last post:

1a) Every chair you pass takes 4 seconds. At zero seconds you are across from chair 2, at unload you are across from chair 200. 200 - 2 = 198. 198 * 4secs = 792 seconds, or 13 minutes and 12 seconds.

1b) On chair 35, directly across from chair 200, the chairs in front of you are chairs 34 through 18. Chair 18 is at the unload spot, and chair 17 is directly across. At time zero, you are directly across from chair 200 (or chair zero), at unload you will be across from chair 34. 34 - 0 = 34. 34 * 4secs = 136 seconds, or 2 minutes and 16 seconds.

Today was my first day at my main placement. It was great to be back with the students I got to meet in September, and I received a very warm welcome. We capped off the day with a staff meeting, and I forgot how much those suck. I don't think I would mind them as much if I was actually a teacher and had some say in the matters discussed, but being a student teacher and having to sit through the conferences is torture. There is a teacher who discovered she has cancer in her bone marrow last month. She is currently undergoing chemo treatment and visits the school 18 hrs per week. During the staff meeting she said, "This doesn't make chemo treatments seem that bad!"

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Sunday, January 04, 2009

Stevens Pass Day 6: Twilight, Math, Burn


Oh man, I wish I had brought my camera today. I checked numerous weather forecasts last night and they all said a big storm was coming late today. With my luck, I decided not to get greedy--go early and leave early. I made it up to the mountain just before opening, and the views on the drive there were spectacular. High clouds with a slit of blue sky between the clouds and the mountains, which let the sunrise beam through and light up the mountain in what I can only describe as twilight blue. The clouds ranged from salmon to yellow, it was a very good wake up distraction.

I took Big Chief to Southern Cross, the quickest way to the backside at Stevens, and was greeted with another amazing view. I was now above the clouds, and could see mountain tops all around, with the clouds covering the valleys. The chair lift descended into the abyss on the backside, and I followed it to the bottom, with a smile and burning legs. I rode ten chairs on the backside, all involving double-diamond terrain, and I got worked out. At one point, the lift operator said, "Nice face shots!"

I looked at him quizzically, then he pointed to his face and said, "Your beard--it is covered in snow!"

Cool! I had only fallen once, and that is when one of my skis came off from a rather jarring hit with a mogul--but I stopped on my remaining ski without face-planting. The snow on my beard must have been from a face shot I was unawares of, sneaky face-shots.

As I rode the chair lifts up I came up with a math problem for my future students, involving the number of chairs on the lift, the time it takes to reach the top, and the individual number of each chair. I haven't hammered out all the details yet, but I'm thinking of asking something along the lines of:

1a) Chairs on a chair lift are numbered 1 to 200 consecutively. At the beginning of the lift you are on chair 1. In front of you is chair 200 and directly across from you is chair 2. Just as you get on chair 1, chair 102 unloads at the top of the lift and is directly across from chair 101. After riding the chair for 8 seconds, you are still on chair 1, but now directly across from you is chair 4. How long does it take you to unload at the top of the lift?

1b) Now you are on chair 35, and directly across from you is chair 200. How much longer until you unload?

Guesses? Show your work!

Extra credit question: is this skiing type of question one that would favor well-to-do kids over low-income kids? Is it still worth using in class if it favors one subset of kids over another?

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Friday, January 02, 2009

Stevens Pass Days 3, 4, 5a, 5b

On day three at Stevens, this past Monday, Dtran joined me for the first day of the backside being open. He borrowed my board and stayed on the front side while I ripped up the backside on my skis. As I was riding the lift back up one of the women on the lift said today was a "Once a Year" day. It was, because I've never seen the backside of Stevens without moguls. It was an entire mountain with untouched powder. For every other day of the year the turns we made today will form into moguls.

Easily a top 5 ski day of my life, my legs were burning after the first run on the backside. DTran and I met up at noon for lunch, and decided to leave early from Stevens due to us both being exhausted and the winds picking up. I later heard Stevens closed a few hours later due to those high winds.

I took Tuesday off, because I was still nice and sore from Monday's powder skiing.

Wednesday, Day 4, I drove back up to the mountain solo, but a friend was up skiing and staying at a cabin up near the mountain for New Year's Eve. I made it up to the mountain about 15 minutes after it opened, and to my dismay only two lifts were operating due to the still incredibly strong winds. I made one run on Hogsback, then did not want to wait in line for an hour, so I hopped into the lodge and eventually chilled in the car waiting for the wind to die down. Oh yeah, Wednesday also marked the first day I drove the Saab instead of the all-wheel drive Pilot. I picked up chains at Les Schwab on the way up to Stevens and they got me in and out, with a demonstration of the quick-fit chains, in under 10 minutes--I like Les Schwab.

I didn't have to put on the chains, as the Saab handled the snow great. After waiting a half-hour and the wind still gusting over 30mph, I decided to drive back down to Seattle. I hesitate to count the one run as a day of skiing, but at least I got one run in...

Thursday, New Years Day, was day 5a. I went to bed early on New Years Eve--I was asleep by 10:30pm. I woke up early and was out of the house by 7:15am in preparation for an amazing day of skiing. The pass got over a foot of snow, and I just knew the backside would be amazing--because nobody got to touch the snow yesterday due to the high winds. From my house to a highway about 2 miles away I saw exactly 3 moving cars, one a garbage truck. 7am on New Years Day apparently isn't the most congested hour for traffic.

I get about 15 miles from Stevens and the traffic starts to slow down, and I see a few cars coming towards Seattle with skis on their racks. I rationalized that people had stayed up at the mountain for New Years Eve and were coming home. Then more traffic and more cars coming the other direction. The traffic halts to a crawl, still 10 miles from the resort, so I call my folks and see if they can find out what is up. The AM radio does not work in the Pilot for some reason, but luckily my parents were able to check the Stevens website and find the pass closed until noon for avalanche control on Highway 2. Bummer.

But! This time I was prepared to wait out the wind/avalanche control! I brought a book and my laptop with me, and I eventually got to a point in the line of traffic where people were turning off their cars to wait out the avalanche control. I turned off the Pilot and started reading a book my sister got me for Xmas: The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. What an amazing book and lecture. I just found the entire lecture on YouTube. The entire lecture is over an hour, and here it is:

If you were a college professor, with months left to live, what would you do? (Waffles, you can keep your answer to yourself)

So I'm sitting in the car deep into Randy Pausch's book when I see the lights of a service truck approach slowly and a guy yell "Not until 9am tomorrow!" as he drives by. Son of a bitch! I drive back home. That's two days, 10 hours of driving, $50 in gas, and one lousy ski run. I was pissed.

Day 5b turned out to be much better. G-Funk, who was planning on coming with me Thursday, goaded me into going up today, Friday. G-Funk is aptly named because of the band G-Funk and the Special Sauce. He got a co-worker pregnant with twins in his early twenties. It turns out the co-worker thought she was unable to have kids, after trying with her ex-husband and having tests done. Up steps G-Funk and BAM! Twins! Anyway, G-Funk sent me an email with his address and phone number to call on Thursday morning when I left my house. I called him and got no answer, so I drove up alone (and with my results, I'd bet he is glad he didn't tag along). We chat Thursday night online and it turns out he mistyped his phone number by one digit. We do make it up to Stevens on Friday, after waiting to see that the Pass is actually open, and we arrive just before noon.

G-Funk and I board together for a couple runs, then I decide to take off for the backside again. G was still trying to get the hang of carving, and I had an urge to test the powder out. I am not very good in the powder. I had a picture-perfect face-plant on a little tree stash I found, and thought I had to myself. I start going down this relatively steep and narrow chute when I see a boarder sprawled out across the chute at the bottom, not making any effort to move. The brief moment of assessing the boarder is enough for me to catch an edge and face plant all the way down the chute. When I stop sliding, face-first down the chute, my entire being is filled with snow, and my ski goggles are around my mouth.

I'm going to take a day of rest tomorrow, then hopefully get back up to the mountain for Day 6 on Sunday w/friends!

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