Monday, April 26, 2004


People on 'ludes should not drive! -- Jeff Spicolli - Fast Times At Ridgemont High

Okay, I've been poking around the other blogs and I came across something from Poker Nerd relating to the MajorKong 2+2 post I referenced some time back. I don't know why, but something in my feeble brain thinks this was a quip at me for failing to appreciate the complexity of that post.

So, let me put something straight here. I'm not advocating that MajorKong is Jesus Christ of the poker world. If you spend enough time poking around 2+2, you'll quickly find that everyone there for the most part thinks they're poker wizards. Now, don't get me wrong, there are some fine poker minds floating around the 2+2 boards. For the most part, the people that are regulars on that board have played an awful lot of poker. Some of the information there is gold. Most of it is either incomplete or inappropriate for most players.

I like the golf analogy PokerNerd used.

Suppose you're a professional golfer. You have a world-renowned coach and you've been very successful. He tells you that after watching some tape, he noticed your right foot is about an inch too close to the ball when you're trying to control a slice with your driver. You say "great" and hit the practice tees for the end, you find a way to shave a half stroke off your average round. You're a great player that became incrementally better because you fully understood everything about the small adjustment you made.

Now, suppose you just took up the game. You get the same advice from the same world-renowned pro. The problem is your slice isn't intentional, you probably should leave the driver in the car, and you think you're ready for a big tournament down at the country club. You tee off on the first hole with his advice in the back of your head and shoot it way out of bounds. And you wonder how this coach could possibly be so great. He didn't help you at all!

First thing. If you're a new player, and you decide to go to the 2+2 forums and take MK's or anyone elses advice verbatim and go to the tables, you deserve to lose, because you're an idiot. For those that don't know, 2+2 is also a publishing company that has a line of books for sale. There is a bit of an agenda there. Never, ever trust advice from a poker player without thoroughly researching it. Poker is like art. Everyone has their own style and thought process, but seldom do they transfer cleanly from one person to the other. I'll never play poker exactly like David Ross, or HDouble, or MajorKong, because neither they nor I are a machine. Anyway, like I said, if you're a new player looking to find a "sure-fire" way to beat poker, you're already done playing.

Second, if you think that you can learn how to play poker by watching professionals play, you will lose money. Like I said previously, Poker is art. Even Beethoven started out playing chopsticks. There are valuable lessons to be learned from watching the pros, but if you think you can sit down and rule the table without honing your skills, you are going to get dropped like third period French.

Third, it's not that you should "leave the driver in the car". Quite the opposite. The problem was when you brought the entire bag to the course for the tourney. Trying to learn winning poker by sitting down at the $15-$30 table is like trying to learn how to drive a race car at the Indy 500.

I don't know why, but I just seemed to take PokerNerd's post a little personal. I'm sure I'm just over reacting, and if so I apologize.


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