Monthly Archives: January 2012

Not a good start

So a quick update on my progress.

Poker and the challenge I gave myself this year is not going so well.
The first week went great and according to plan. I started with 500$, part of the challenge, and quickly got it up to 700$ in the first 7 days.
I took some shots at the higher levels. It’s important that I move up as fast as possible to the 2$-4$ level. Mainly because of the rake in the limit games.
I played pretty good in these games and know I can be a winner in them. I got a bit unlucky in the flop games and had to move down again to the 1$-2$ level. This is where things started to get ugly.
I could not put in a winning session. I lost more than 200$ playing at 6a.m. in the morning before going to work, which obviously does not work and I quickly stopped playing when I just woke up.
My bankroll now is 250$. Obviously not a disaster but I’m forced to move down to the .50c-1$ games for a little while. If I want this challenge to succeed I really have to get to the 2$-4$ level as fast as possible.
I decided to put in less hours of playing this week but more hours of studying my game.

So not the best start of the year.
But that’s poker, it involves a lot of swings, specially when you’re playing limit games and not being specialised in any of them.
I have to be disciplined and only play when I feel can at least play my B game. Winning 10k$ in poker is not the hard part, it’s winning them playing the 8-game mix that’s hard.

Something I have to keep remembering myself:

Think of poker as a continual, lifelong game. Your goal in this game is to make money in the long-term. If you’re a winning player, you can attain this goal.

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The Coma

3rd book of the year : The Coma by Alex Garland.

A very thin book with a lot of illustrations, these drawings were done by Alex Garland’s father, Nicholas Garland. I liked the drawings, they really suited the story well. I even think I liked the drawings better than the writing ..

Throughout the book I was happy knowing it was a very small book and I would finish it in 1 or 2 sittings. I wasn’t very found of the book, never really got hooked. I didn’t think the main character was interesting nor his story. I don’t want to be too harsh though, Garland is a very good writer and The Coma is very well written. I just never got into the whole story.

Waking was the most reliable part of a dream, as built into dreams as death is to life. You dream, you wake: you live, you die.

The main character was beaten and got into a coma, we follow him while he is ‘dreaming’ in his coma. He realises he is in a coma and tries to get out of it. The entire book is a sort of dream where the character moves from one place to another without knowing how he got there etc. I did kinda like this because I’m into the whole ‘dreaming’ thing. I dream very heavily myself and I read a lot about lucid dreaming and dream control. So that’s what made the book not an entire disappointment for me.

I had high hopes for this one, I really like Alex Garland. He wrote scripts for movies I really liked a lot, also The Beach is a book I enjoyed very much many years ago. Maybe I’m not fair and I should reread it in a year or so. I have a feeling I missed something and that its my fault it was a disappointment. Not sure.

I don’t regret reading the book, it made me think a lot about my own dreams and the possibilities to control them.

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The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

Image via Wikipedia

Second book of the year : The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao written by Junot Díaz.
I had absolutely no idea what to expect from this one. I did not read the back of the book or researched anything about the writer or the book before I started reading it.
I bought the book more than a year ago at a book fair only knowing it won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. It definitely deserved the prize.

Reading this book was an amazing experience and an emotional rollercoaster. The story is about Oscar, his family and the dark history and hard life they have to lead.
The book can be hilarious and I really liked the nerdy aspect of Oscar. Reminded me of some people I used to know when I was into computer gaming.
Though often funny, I found this book to be very dark. Oscar’s life and the history of his family is filled with horrifying and disastrous events. Specially the story of his grandfather was a very dark one and was told in such a realistic manner that even I started to fear for my own children ( though I don’t have children, yet).
This was my favorite part of the book, I was more emotionally attached to Oscar’s grandfather then to Oscar himself, who was after all the main character of the book.

The ending was great and very fulfilling. It made me think a lot about my own life and what I want from the future. And it definitely made me realise how lucky I am to be able to write my own opinions and feelings without being sliced into pieces by an evil dictator.

That’s life for you. All the happiness you gather to yourself, it will sweep it away like it’s nothing. If you ask me I don’t think there are any such things as curses. I think there is only life. That’s enough.

Tuesday, I crashed my car getting back from work. Luckily no one got hurt. I have to buy myself a new car though. I stayed very relaxed the entire week and could not stop thinking about Oscar and the things he and his family had to go through. Crashing my car just didn’t compare to their misery.
It sounds a bit strange and corny, I know. But this is why I decided to do this challenge. I wanted to grow as a person, become a better human being and realise what I want out of life.

It’s only my second book and I feel both books already tought me some very valuable lessons I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Thank you mister Díaz.



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