no. 54 – Learn how to play poker

I wanted to learn how to play poker not to become a gambler. I was just curious because Pangs always watched in Solar Sports the World Poker Tournament where the bets get as high as 10 million dollars during the final round. I got tired of asking him why player A won, why player B folded, why player C wore shades and so on I decided to just learn playing via the internet. The Texas Hold ‘Em in Facebook proved to be too much for me I did not understand anything. I just clicked and clicked.

Good thing there was Bianca, who was patient enough to teach me how. We played without actual money involved and I got a grip of the game though I found it boring. One time, when I went to Batangas, my uncles (who attended weekly poker nights) and cousins taught me some refresher course about the card game and I felt I was ready to roll.

During our first poker night, we started our bets with 2 and 4 pesos. I realized that poker without money is dull but with those hard-earned cash given to you by your parents, it was fun.

Really fun, actually, that we found ourselves raising the bets to as high as 200 pesos at the end of the game. That night I lost 700 bucks. I was not as devastated as I thought I’d be because I enjoyed. If you’ve ever heard of the quote saying “time you enjoyed wasting was not wasted”, I have to say it also holds true to the money you enjoyed losing.

The second time, we requested Bianca to bring her poker set because betting and losing would be much more acceptable with chips than with paper currencies shouting their denominations at your face.

It was better due to the mere fact that you do not compute/count how much you’ve lost and just how little money is left on your side. After all, they’re just different-colored chips. Hence, you focus more on your cards.

One of the best plays I’ve seen was when four Jacks and a Queen were drawn from the deck. We all folded except Dai and Bianca who called until the end. I think Dai had a King but Bianca had an Ace and the pot money went to her.

I learned from these poker nights as well as from my experience in Macau that I was not born for gambling. Heck, beginner’s luck did not even last long enough for me to win back what I lost. My balance was always negative. Or maybe I haven’t discovered what game I’m good at?

I guess I’ll regret learning how to play poker in the near future because it is in this game where I lose my money fast.

Poker is easy to learn as long as you memorize the List of poker hands from best to worst. After that, a little mastery goes a long way. The probability of drawing different hands are as follows: Straight Flush = 0.0015%, Four of a king (Quadro) = 0.024%, Full House = 0.14%, Flush = 0.196%, Straight = 0.39%, Three of a kind (Trio) = 2.11%, Two pair = 4.75%, One pair = 42.26%, and High card = 50.11%.

Slim chances huh? That’s where luck comes along.


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