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Author Topic: There and Back Again: A Punter's Tale by Matthew Harris  (Read 96384 times)
Rexas
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« Reply #525 on: February 17, 2014, 10:54:16 AM »

I would disagree with posting 10 hands on the pha, it's too many and people will stop looking at the 6th. Make a video here you speak in love time about your thought processes for every hand no matter how minuscule the reason may be for 15 minutes I'm sure some PLO heroes will watch it and tell you if you're just approaching it in the right way or not. After that I'd move up to plo50 or if you need to (no idea your circumstances etc) get staked. It shouldn't be too hard and 50% of your action in a beatable 50plo game where the pots actually mean something to you and can make you happy when you suck out on the river will be way better than 100% of your action at plo10 with stupid rake and very little in terms of rakeback and at a stake it's almost impossible,to take seriously.

Sorry I haven't replied ealier pads, genuinely didn't see this until a few days ago! I'm looking into the video stuff, although I'm totally terrible with technology so it may take a while to sort out. I also don't have a mic for the computer (which is what I grind on), so this seems like a pretty good excuse to get one of those too!

With regards to staking for PLO, before I do look for anything I feel like I should get a whole bunch of hands behind me, like 50k at least, before I can take it to anyone for staking purposes. I'm also hoping that I can work my way up to plo50 within the year if I grind it pretty hard, which I intend to start doing pretty soon. As it stands, I've only been able to record 25k or so hands, over which I'm losing a small amount. I've worked up from 4 tables to 6, which seems to be my optimal number for six max cash at the moment. I've also started playing zoom, and while 4 is still a little too much I've worked up from 2 to 3 within the space of a week without much trouble, so it shouldn't be too long before I can hit 4 and be churning out 1k hands an hour. Within this sample there have also been a fair few instances of experimentation, which is how I like to learn. So, for example, I read that it's not a great idea to call a 4bet with hands like A678, because the A is essentially a dead card (see http://blondepoker.com/forum/index.php?topic=63234.0). What I did with this, while I was going through some 3betting theory, was 3bet basically every hand I wanted to play IP so I could understand why doing that with these sorts of hands is going to get you into tough spots. I definitely feel this is one of the best ways to learn, and it seems to be working for me atm!

Hope you keep at it Matt. I believe you were in seat 1 on the Friday of the APAT cash game in Stoke? You played proper solid, and from our short chat (I was seat 3) you definitely approached it with the right mindset which is all the better given it would've been so easy to splash around in a jovial cash game. Know how you feel, but results will come - best of luck.

Obviously if you weren't this chap, ignore most of the above, but still best of luck and keep up the blog Smiley

Yeah, that was me, that makes you the guy with the awesome orange hoodie then right? For the fans, I would like to point out that "solid" involved me cold 5bet calling with A10os for quite a lot of BBs, and 5bet jamming J9os (although this got through, so I suppose you wouldn't have known about that Wink). For the last few years I've basically made a living in games like that, so I'm used to being able to enjoy the atmosphere without it affecting how I play. Was pretty tough it that game though, it was a lot of fun! It's also a shame I can't seem to get hold of the recording of the stream for that game, really wanted to be able to go through it with a few people, but what can you do :p Hopefully I'll see you around!

hope everything is well GL in getting back on track. Everyone goes busto most people will do it many times. Many people are still doing it all the time (<<<< ME). Its definiatly never the end of the world!

I'm actually surprisingly ok with it. I had a moment that unfortunately everyone will remember in the 500 d/s where I basically realised I was likely to end up busto, and played pretty badly as a result, and ended up playing the incredible hundred after and lost a flip for the chip lead with like 10 till the money, which I found very hard to take. However, I pretty much reconciled it over January that it looked like it was going to happen, and that when it did I'd just have to deal with it. Obviously I didn't just give up and spew the rest away, but I recognised being busto was a possibility and now I'm left with a real drive to get back into the game. Watching the 1/2/4 running recently and not being able to be a part of it has been a little painful, and it is GG to live poker for a while until I can rebuild.

On that note, I have been considering putting up a thread on the Live Staking boards about some sort of 50/50 plus make up long term live tournament staking deal, but have no idea how to approach it. After Uni has got sorted out and my friends funeral (see http://blondepoker.com/forum/index.php?topic=63224.0) is done with I think I'll take another look at that and  try and get it going.

Made a pact with myself to try and post on the diary when I have something positive, or at least not ridic negative like the last few posts have been, to say. Hopefully I'll be posting a lot more in the next few weeks then!
« Last Edit: February 17, 2014, 11:00:28 AM by Rexas » Logged

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« Reply #526 on: February 17, 2014, 06:01:19 PM »

People seem to be running features in their diaries at the moment, but don't seem to be very good at sticking to it. I would like to try and get people two appreciate something that I feel very strongly about, and that is poetry.

Poetry has been ruined by years of a terrible literary education system, which has made people read and analyse poetry at too young an age to be able to appreciate it for what it is. More than that, by being made to analyse every individual line, you, like many of your teachers, are completely missing the point. Every line does not have to be understood, things don't have to have multiple meanings and be clever allusions to things you've never heard of, but a poem should feel as if it means something, and/or instigate an emotional reaction in much the same way as music. You don't have to understand it, except to realise for yourself that it is there. Words are very powerful things, and there are a few poems that have managed to fit them together in ways that make the hairs on the back of my neck stand tall. I went through the education system hating poetry, and wondering how on earth someone could choose to sit and read it in their own time, let alone pay for copies of it. Luckily I managed to discover a few poems independently of the classroom, and upon reading them, discovered that I had misjudged them as a literary genre. For sure, there is a hell of a lot of crap that has to be sifted through to find the minority of worthwhile material, but with any luck I'll be able to sway the prejudice of some of those who read this diary. I'll try to give some contextual information with each poem to give you a bit of a feel for the circumstances under which it was written, and I will do my best to answer any comments anyone may have about them.

I'll start with the easy stuff - This one is probably familiar to quite a few of you, as it was the title of, and featured within, the film Invictus. Nelson Mandela quotes this poem is one of his sources of inspiration, and lines from it have appeared across various forms of media many a time.

Invictus (or "Unconquered") is William Ernest Henley's best known literary work. He suffered from tuberculosis from an early age, and had his left leg amputated at the age of 19, around the same time as the death of his father. Later, faced with the amputation of his right leg due to the same illness, Henley sought further medical advice and spent three years of his life in hospital receiving treatment, and it was at the end of this period that Henley wrote Invictus as a way of voicing his defiance of his disability. Interestingly, Henley was a friend of Robert Louis Stevenson and James Matthew Barrie, and provided the inspiration for the characters of Long John Silver and, through the ill health of his daughter, Wendy from Peter Pan.

Invictus

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.


I'll also try and include a reading if I can find a decent one, and it's hard to get better than Morgan Freeman -

« Last Edit: February 17, 2014, 06:11:22 PM by Rexas » Logged

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« Reply #527 on: February 17, 2014, 09:16:11 PM »

Yeah, that was me, that makes you the guy with the awesome orange hoodie then right? For the fans, I would like to point out that "solid" involved me cold 5bet calling with A10os for quite a lot of BBs, and 5bet jamming J9os (although this got through, so I suppose you wouldn't have known about that Wink). For the last few years I've basically made a living in games like that, so I'm used to being able to enjoy the atmosphere without it affecting how I play. Was pretty tough it that game though, it was a lot of fun! It's also a shame I can't seem to get hold of the recording of the stream for that game, really wanted to be able to go through it with a few people, but what can you do :p Hopefully I'll see you around!

Haha, that's me.

My hand recall is utterly dreadful, definitely the worst part of my game - I vaguely remember what must've been the AT hand, but everything else - into the deep recesses of my mind. I guess that makes you selectively aggressive over splashy right? Smiley
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« Reply #528 on: February 17, 2014, 11:36:19 PM »

Yeah, that was me, that makes you the guy with the awesome orange hoodie then right? For the fans, I would like to point out that "solid" involved me cold 5bet calling with A10os for quite a lot of BBs, and 5bet jamming J9os (although this got through, so I suppose you wouldn't have known about that Wink). For the last few years I've basically made a living in games like that, so I'm used to being able to enjoy the atmosphere without it affecting how I play. Was pretty tough it that game though, it was a lot of fun! It's also a shame I can't seem to get hold of the recording of the stream for that game, really wanted to be able to go through it with a few people, but what can you do :p Hopefully I'll see you around!

Haha, that's me.

My hand recall is utterly dreadful, definitely the worst part of my game - I vaguely remember what must've been the AT hand, but everything else - into the deep recesses of my mind. I guess that makes you selectively aggressive over splashy right? Smiley

Yea, certainly softer 25/50p games in the world (i was seat 2 - the rose between you two thorns) but luckboxing the AQ v T6 hand helped.

I remember the AT hand, the J9 not so much.

GL on the tables sir
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« Reply #529 on: February 18, 2014, 01:36:11 AM »

My hand recall tends to be pretty good, mainly because I tend to go over most of the significant hands I play. I assume we're keeping quite about the  hand s4ooter? The J9os didn't get to showdown, just got 5bet shipped :p I've toed the line between splashy and "selectively aggressive" and imo I've spent time on both sides of that fence. Hopefully I'll be more firmly in the not splashy camp when I make it back to having a live poker roll!
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« Reply #530 on: February 19, 2014, 11:21:58 AM »

I appreciate the honesty, otherwise the next time we locked horns I'd spend an hour thinking "Jeez, this nit's pretty active".
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« Reply #531 on: February 19, 2014, 09:14:01 PM »

People seem to be running features in their diaries at the moment, but don't seem to be very good at sticking to it. I would like to try and get people two appreciate something that I feel very strongly about, and that is poetry.

Poetry has been ruined by years of a terrible literary education system, which has made people read and analyse poetry at too young an age to be able to appreciate it for what it is. More than that, by being made to analyse every individual line, you, like many of your teachers, are completely missing the point. Every line does not have to be understood, things don't have to have multiple meanings and be clever allusions to things you've never heard of, but a poem should feel as if it means something, and/or instigate an emotional reaction in much the same way as music. You don't have to understand it, except to realise for yourself that it is there. Words are very powerful things, and there are a few poems that have managed to fit them together in ways that make the hairs on the back of my neck stand tall. I went through the education system hating poetry, and wondering how on earth someone could choose to sit and read it in their own time, let alone pay for copies of it. Luckily I managed to discover a few poems independently of the classroom, and upon reading them, discovered that I had misjudged them as a literary genre. For sure, there is a hell of a lot of crap that has to be sifted through to find the minority of worthwhile material, but with any luck I'll be able to sway the prejudice of some of those who read this diary. I'll try to give some contextual information with each poem to give you a bit of a feel for the circumstances under which it was written, and I will do my best to answer any comments anyone may have about them.

I'll start with the easy stuff - This one is probably familiar to quite a few of you, as it was the title of, and featured within, the film Invictus. Nelson Mandela quotes this poem is one of his sources of inspiration, and lines from it have appeared across various forms of media many a time.

Invictus (or "Unconquered") is William Ernest Henley's best known literary work. He suffered from tuberculosis from an early age, and had his left leg amputated at the age of 19, around the same time as the death of his father. Later, faced with the amputation of his right leg due to the same illness, Henley sought further medical advice and spent three years of his life in hospital receiving treatment, and it was at the end of this period that Henley wrote Invictus as a way of voicing his defiance of his disability. Interestingly, Henley was a friend of Robert Louis Stevenson and James Matthew Barrie, and provided the inspiration for the characters of Long John Silver and, through the ill health of his daughter, Wendy from Peter Pan.

Invictus

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.


I'll also try and include a reading if I can find a decent one, and it's hard to get better than Morgan Freeman -





Invictus always makes me think of 'Do not go gentle into that good night' by Dylan Thomas, which he wrote for his dying father.

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
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« Reply #532 on: February 26, 2014, 01:20:41 AM »

Hey Tom, thanks for that poem, I haven't actually come across this one before and it was certainly very well written. It's amazing the amount of power that can be conveyed with a few well selected words. I'll be putting up another poem within the next 24 hours, and I haven't forgotten this feature. It will be a pretty long update I'm afraid, covering the BUCS bowling tournament weekend, my friends funeral, my current thoughts about where to go with my poker, and a bit of poetry.
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« Reply #533 on: February 26, 2014, 07:39:28 PM »

One of my all-time favourites.


TIM, AN IRISH TERRIER

It's wonderful dogs they're breeding now:
Small as a flea or large as a cow;
But my old dog Tim he'll never be bet
By any dog that ever he met.
'Come on,' says he, 'for I'm not kilt yet.'

No matter the size of the dog he'll meet,
Tim trails his coat the length o' the street.
D'ye mind his scar an' his ragged ear,
The like of a Dublin Fusilier?
He's a massacree dog that knows no fear.

But he'd stick to me till his lastest breath;
An' he'd go with me to the gates of death.
He'd wait for a thousand years, maybe,
Scratching the door 'an whining for me
If myself were inside in Purgatory.

So I laugh when I hear them make it plain
That dogs and men never meet again.
For all their talk who'd listen to thim
With the soul in the shining eyes of him?
Would God be wasting a dog like Tim?
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« Reply #534 on: February 27, 2014, 01:11:47 PM »

Thanks Red, keep em coming! I hadn't head this in a long time, written by someone called Letts if I remember correctly.

BUCS

This is the big bowling tournament of the year, which is part of a wider BUCS league covering a wide variety of sports. Universities compete for BUCS points and get funding based on how many points they achieve, so this one does actually mean something in terms of club development as well as pride, as it's always the biggest turn out and the fiercest competition. Loughborough went into the tournament with our A team as pretty heavy favourites to win. We managed to field three pretty strong teams, with our B team in the mix for winning their division. We also managed to field two girls teams, which considering we couldn't even field one last year was a pretty good effort. The conditions were very, very tricky and the scores across all the competitors were pretty low, but as expected Loughborough A team won by a big margin despite a ropey start to the 5 man team game, which saw us drop nearly half our lead. There were a few big success stories however, and our B-team ended up edging a win in their division, and our girls A-team picking up silver. Even better, two of the girls made the Great Britain BUCS rep squad, and four of the 6 man A team did too. I didn't even go for it this year, but I reckon if I can sort out a few things and bowl a bit better next year, it would be worth giving it a go. It would be nice to pull on a jersey to represent my country, especially at something I enjoy. Very, very proud of the whole team, it's been fantastic to be a part of.

The Team -
 Click to see full-size image.


The winning A Team -
 Click to see full-size image.


Isaac

For those of you that don't know, my best mate from secondary school became the first brit to die from a "necknomination" a few weeks ago. His funeral took place on Tuesday, which I attended, along with several of our old friends. The whole thing was very surreal, and got me thinking about a lot of things. Even though we hadn't seen each other in years, our little group got chatting right away, and what was probably the only laughter in the church came from us. I don't like the way funerals are set up, and the way the vicar/reverend/whatever talks about the guy as if they knew him. I wanted to celebrate the guys life, and the fact is a lot of the memories I have of him were pretty funny. I think it's an English thing too, to laugh in moments of this sort of tension. Gallows humour, I think it's called. Anyway, I thought it was fairly fitting that I was remembering him by using him as an excuse to miss a days lectures. He'd have approved of that. The walk out song was "Time of your Life" by Green Day, which is subtitled "Good Riddance". I'm not sure if the people who chose that song were aware of this, but again I think he'd have approved.

After the funeral, four of us bundled into my car and took a nostalgia trip round Colchester. We were all in suits for the funeral, and we wore suits to sixth form, so the whole thing was very surreal. We went through my old school, and the head of sixth form just happened to be free at that time, so we were given a tour. A lot of the place has changed, but enough of what it used to be is still there to trigger all the memories. It's strange how things move on, I guess when you aren't there any more you feel like it freezes in its own little bubble. I'm completely different to how I used to be, but a lot of things/people are very similar. Even the staff in the burger king on the high street seemed to sort of recognise us!

This weeks poem (I know it's late) is another very well known one that often seems to be heard at funerals. The story behind it is quite interesting. Mary Elizabeth Frye was an American housewife/florist, who was orphaned at the age of three. She was not a poet, and had never written anything significant prior to this poem. She did write after the one below, but to my knowledge none of her other writings have endured. I have certainly not come across them. This poem was inspired by a Jewish woman, who was left unable to return home to her mother in Germany to tend to her while she was ill due to the growing Nazi-related unrest. When her mother died, the conversations between her and Frye prompted the creation of this poem, which was originally written on shopping bags and was never properly published. In fact, the author was not confirmed until 16 years ago, which is remarkable given the popularity of the poem. Anyway, it was read by Isaac's father at his funeral, and was definitely very fitting for the occasion.

Do Not Stand At My Grave and Weep

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.
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« Reply #535 on: February 28, 2014, 09:57:30 AM »

Thanks Red, keep em coming! I hadn't head this in a long time, written by someone called Letts if I remember correctly.

BUCS

This is the big bowling tournament of the year, which is part of a wider BUCS league covering a wide variety of sports. Universities compete for BUCS points and get funding based on how many points they achieve, so this one does actually mean something in terms of club development as well as pride, as it's always the biggest turn out and the fiercest competition. Loughborough went into the tournament with our A team as pretty heavy favourites to win. We managed to field three pretty strong teams, with our B team in the mix for winning their division. We also managed to field two girls teams, which considering we couldn't even field one last year was a pretty good effort. The conditions were very, very tricky and the scores across all the competitors were pretty low, but as expected Loughborough A team won by a big margin despite a ropey start to the 5 man team game, which saw us drop nearly half our lead. There were a few big success stories however, and our B-team ended up edging a win in their division, and our girls A-team picking up silver. Even better, two of the girls made the Great Britain BUCS rep squad, and four of the 6 man A team did too. I didn't even go for it this year, but I reckon if I can sort out a few things and bowl a bit better next year, it would be worth giving it a go. It would be nice to pull on a jersey to represent my country, especially at something I enjoy. Very, very proud of the whole team, it's been fantastic to be a part of.

The Team -
 Click to see full-size image.


The winning A Team -
 Click to see full-size image.


Isaac

For those of you that don't know, my best mate from secondary school became the first brit to die from a "necknomination" a few weeks ago. His funeral took place on Tuesday, which I attended, along with several of our old friends. The whole thing was very surreal, and got me thinking about a lot of things. Even though we hadn't seen each other in years, our little group got chatting right away, and what was probably the only laughter in the church came from us. I don't like the way funerals are set up, and the way the vicar/reverend/whatever talks about the guy as if they knew him. I wanted to celebrate the guys life, and the fact is a lot of the memories I have of him were pretty funny. I think it's an English thing too, to laugh in moments of this sort of tension. Gallows humour, I think it's called. Anyway, I thought it was fairly fitting that I was remembering him by using him as an excuse to miss a days lectures. He'd have approved of that. The walk out song was "Time of your Life" by Green Day, which is subtitled "Good Riddance". I'm not sure if the people who chose that song were aware of this, but again I think he'd have approved.

After the funeral, four of us bundled into my car and took a nostalgia trip round Colchester. We were all in suits for the funeral, and we wore suits to sixth form, so the whole thing was very surreal. We went through my old school, and the head of sixth form just happened to be free at that time, so we were given a tour. A lot of the place has changed, but enough of what it used to be is still there to trigger all the memories. It's strange how things move on, I guess when you aren't there any more you feel like it freezes in its own little bubble. I'm completely different to how I used to be, but a lot of things/people are very similar. Even the staff in the burger king on the high street seemed to sort of recognise us!

This weeks poem (I know it's late) is another very well known one that often seems to be heard at funerals. The story behind it is quite interesting. Mary Elizabeth Frye was an American housewife/florist, who was orphaned at the age of three. She was not a poet, and had never written anything significant prior to this poem. She did write after the one below, but to my knowledge none of her other writings have endured. I have certainly not come across them. This poem was inspired by a Jewish woman, who was left unable to return home to her mother in Germany to tend to her while she was ill due to the growing Nazi-related unrest. When her mother died, the conversations between her and Frye prompted the creation of this poem, which was originally written on shopping bags and was never properly published. In fact, the author was not confirmed until 16 years ago, which is remarkable given the popularity of the poem. Anyway, it was read by Isaac's father at his funeral, and was definitely very fitting for the occasion.

Do Not Stand At My Grave and Weep

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.


This is quiet funny to be honest curtis hooper who you obv know but is top left in the picture went to school with me for years! But very well played matt, i didn't read the poetry though sorry.
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« Reply #536 on: February 28, 2014, 11:50:05 AM »

Curtis carried the team through Tyler, he's a ridiculously good bowler, current England international. Good mate of mine too!

You only didn't it because you were afraid you might like it Wink
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« Reply #537 on: February 28, 2014, 12:14:50 PM »

Curtis carried the team through Tyler, he's a ridiculously good bowler, current England international. Good mate of mine too!

You only didn't it because you were afraid you might like it Wink

Or it just doesn't interest me don't really ever feel like i actually gain much from reading poetry,stupid people problems lol.

I remember he was just breaking into the england team at school.
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« Reply #538 on: March 05, 2014, 12:53:24 AM »

Bowling

Post BUCS bowling has gone absolutely crazy. Personally, I had another 299, have found some motivation to properly get back into it and for the first time in a few years I feel like I'm throwing some good shots, and making some good, quick adjustments. That 299 I had with a ball I haven't thrown in a few years, and I'd brought it down to give to a friend of mine. The first two shots were actually with another ball I'd bought to give away, just showcasing what it can do. Then threw some good shots (except the second in the tenth), and made a last shot that I was pretty proud of. I'd noticed that there was some transition going on and I had to make a move, and I wasn't afraid to do so even given the fact that I was one shot away from perfect, and I had barely moved all game. I made the move, threw a pretty good shot and left a 4pin as it just crept high. Made the right move, just not by enough :p Either way, I didn't pull out of it this time, and that's the second 299 in the past few months, which is very encouraging. Following another one of our members getting his first 300 last week, I am now the only member of the A team to have never had a perfect game. Must set that right!

I've also been doing a lot more coaching, which is fantastic. The club itself is going from strength to strength, with everyone seeming to be enjoying themselves and continuing to improve. We've ended up bowling three days a week, now that myself and Curtis have decided to take a car load up to the bowl on Thursdays for some more intensive coaching, with no pins, a bunch of videos and a bollocks training manual. This in itself is great, and I'm enjoying getting to learn from one of the best bowlers in the country and learning how to coach effectively. I'm also getting a lesson from Jon Zadel in a week or so, a guy who is generally accepted to be the best instructor in the country. I'm hoping this will help get my game on track and I'll be paying attention to his coaching techniques, and trying to implement some of them into my own training. I will definitely be pushing for the GB squad next year, and I'll be hitting the uni tour and attempting to average at least 190 over as many events as possible. At the moment, I don't see why I can't achieve this.

By request, I'm going to run a second feature on here for a little while, since this blog is getting more and more devoid of poker as I find less positive things to say about it.

Most Butchered Hand of the Day

http://www.boomplayer.com/en/poker-hands/Boom/7795507_C1EEB50B6A

In my defense, this was right at the start of the session while I was still getting tables/music set up :p

Would definitely encourage others to post their most butchered hands, I'm sure in the coming weeks I'll be able to put up loads of poorly played hands for the enjoyment of the community Smiley

Poem

Another classic this week, but one of my all time favourites. Rudyard Kipling is a very controversial figure, being quite political and certainly very well known as a writer, even being nominated for knighthood, which he declined. Perhaps his most famous work is "The Jungle Book", which has been re-produced many times and is still going very strongly today. Born in India during Imperial Britain, much of Kipling's work featured colonialism and empire as a recurrent theme. He was a prominent figure during the first world war, producing literature in support of the allies cause, unfortunately ultimately encouraging his son John to his death at the age of 18. Kipling was particularly aggrieved by this as his son had been rejected for service on the basis of poor eyesight several times before Rudyard stepped in to help secure him a place in the Irish Guard. Rudyard Kipling does not have an involvement in the brand "Mr. Kipling".

The poem that we are looking at today is one of his most famous. It was written with a few people in mind. It is directly addressed to his son, and was first written in 1895 (although not published until much later), so this poem falls before the death of his son in the Kipling timeline. The traits that Kipling expresses as those desirable in a man were drawn from the character of Leander Starr Jameson, a political soldier who led the Jameson Raid which ended in defeat, and led to the second Boer War and Jameson's short imprisonment, despite his portrayal as a heroic and inspirational figure. You can almost see the words reflect the events of Jameson's life.

The poem itself is fantastically emotive and beautifully written. Such a command over language is rarely demonstrated, and as one of the first poems I discovered independent of a classroom, it is certainly partly responsible for my current views on poetry as a genre. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
 
If

If you can keep your head when all about you
  Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
  But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
  Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
  And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
  If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
  And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
  Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
  And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
  And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
  And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
  To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
  Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
  Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
  If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
  With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
  And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son


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humour is very much encouraged, however theres humour and theres not.
I disrepectfully agree with Matt Smiley
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« Reply #539 on: March 05, 2014, 01:56:55 AM »

Don't really see the butchery, where would you do something different. Rivers rly annoying but such a good price.
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[21:05:17] Andrew W: you wasted a non spelling mistakepost?
[21:11:08] Patrick Leonard: oll
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