Thursday, March 24th, 2005, 1:18 pm

Tuesday I downloaded an Adobe Acrobat update, figured out how to get my computer to shake hands with it, and opened up my copy of the biggest thing to hit online poker since the 4-color deck, the Poker Tracker Guide. And, amazingly, it worked, graphics and all.

Now for the tricky part–printing it out. Printing out a 64-page manuscript in book form would be a challenge, because I happen to own 3 cats. And in case you thought you knew the roster of typical feline prey items (mice, fish, cream) let me tell you that my trio cannot resist the rhythmic “humm–humm–huuuuuummmmmm” of a printer in motion. When I’m printing something they come from all corners looking for a fight. And when they get there, they find me waiting for them.

I spent twenty goddam minutes fencing with Ernie, Bert and Izzy to keep them away from the printer. They want to climb on it. They want to shove their paws into the paper tray. They want to bite the power cord. Shut the door and lock them out? In the end I did just that, but I don’t like using the “nuclear” option because their litter box is in that room and I’m afraid that they will literally get pissed if I keep them out too long. Plus they start fighting and that drives me even more nutso.

When the guide printed out correctly on the first try I nearly called the Vatican to tell them there had been a miracle right here in Pittsburgh. I have a long history of bad times with printers, but this was no problemo. All I had to do now was sit down in front of my computer and do some book-learnin’.

First thing I realized was that there were screens and buttons and do-dads I couldn’t find on my screen. “What the hell…” I snarled, until I realized that Iggy and Hank were talking about PokerTracker version 2.05, while I had PokerTracker version 2.0…..1. Wait, you mean they UPDATE software on the fly like that? Yes, brainiac me had never gone back to the PT site to look for updates. So I went to the PT site, looked for an update, and downloaded it.

“Oh, so THAT’s why the Auto Hand History thing wouldn’t work for me!” I said aloud because there was no one there to hear how stupid I am. Once I got the update running and I fiddled a bit I started to get a little bit excited. I uploaded a ton of hands that were languishing on my hard drive, and uploaded a file of old hand histories I had sitting in my email for about 6 months. Data, all that data, waiting to be crunched…

I have not fully put PT or the PTG through its paces, and that will probably have to wait until this weekend. But it seems completely daft to play online poker and not have them in your toolbox. But wait, you say, YOU’VE been playing without them. Yes, and I think I’m on record as saying I’m a complete idiot. Oh yeah…

I’ll try very hard not to wear out the tape I used to record last night’s WPT episode, seeing as Isabelle Mercier was calling much of the at-table action. I still can’t believe I didn’t tape the Ladies’ Night event…well, I didn’t expect to be hit by the thunderbolt.

A question–at what point would it be OK for someone to punch Tony G. in the nose? Just haul off and cold-cock him? To a certain extent I think he’s funny, he’s a clown, a buffoon, and it’s hard to get mad at someone who is completely bonkers. But when you lose a tough hand and he’s jabbering at you the desire to make an omelet of his face must become acute.

Had he won, Tony might have replaced President Bush as the most disliked man in France. But he didn’t, thanks to some incomprehensible plays. I understand, when you have a big chip lead, you might not mind a coin flip to win the whole thing. But is that reason enough to call an all-in with only J-4? And I think he called another time with J-8 against pocket sixes. If the other guy keeps going all-in, he just needs to be wrong once–and indeed Surinder Sunar did get in a tight spot when his K-6 ended up a big dog to Tony’s pocket tens. But two sixes came on the flop, and pretty soon after that it was all over.

JD brought up the borderline-racist promo the WPT used for next week’s episode. You see David “The Dragon” Pham and hear a a voice speaking in an absurd, mincing Mr. Moto accent say, “I bluffed you with a 2-3 offsuit…nothing can stop me now!”. Then we see a redheaded waitress leaning over to put a drink down on an table and it cuts to a different shot of Pham standing with his mouth hanging open. Another promo had much the same thing, except for a Spanish-accented voice coming from Mortensen sneering, “The Dragon…did your mother give you that silly nickname?”.

Whoever greenlighted these stupid promos should’ve seen after the first show they weren’t working. As I’ve written before, they aren’t funny, and they actually make the players look really, really stupid. But this one comes awfully close to being offensive. Maybe more than close. I mean, if they had shown Phil Ivey and had a voiceover imitating Rochester from the “Jack Benny Show”, there would’ve been a thermonuclear brouhaha. And understandably so. Killing this spot should’ve been a no-brainer. Which may be explained by the fact that no one with a brain seems to have been involved in its creation.

I placed 3rd in a SNG last night. The highlights…there were none. I played OK, doubled up once to ensure I’d make the money, and meekly went out to the chip leader. The hand before I got knocked out I made a BRILLIANT move. I was playing pot-limit and bet the pot with A-8. The guy in the small blind raised, and the chip leader raised HIM. Hmm…I only had $280 left, not enough enough to cover my upcoming big blind. But if I folded, and the other guy called, and lost, I’d move up to second. So I folded. And…so did the other guy. Yes, Mean Gene is the master of the subtle play. Inspired move on my part.

“Wuss!” I typed. “You’re supposed to go all-in and get knocked out!”. He laughed at me, and the next hand I was dispatched from the big blind. Not a highlight of my poker career, but cashing is cashing. My bankroll is up 100% from a two weeks ago, and if I bring PokerTracker to bear…

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3 Responses to “So THAT’S Why”

  1. lifesagrind Says:

    I’ve heard you have it bad for Isabelle. I had the fortune of sitting next to her in a tournament on board a CardPlayer Cruise. I of course didn’t know who she was until after I got back home and saw the Ladies Night event on TV. I have to tell you, she looks younger and better in person.

  2. Bob Says:

    Dude, you’re one cat away from being a crazy cat lady!

    Nice subtle play in the SNG also.

    I like to stare down my internet foes as I muck hands. It makes them fear me.

  3. StudioGlyphic Says:

    Hey, the fact that you found out about the new PT updates should be worth $20, right?

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