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Poker News | PokerWorks Op-Ed

The Back Room – Studly Advice

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The only mouse you’ll find in the back room of the Farm Barn is one that scurries away from the light and the sound of a poker game that runs late night once a week – no computers, no internet poker, no electronic gadgets allowed.

Rain is welcome. Lots of rain is not. We’ve been visited by lots of rain and business was suffering. Not the orders, but the fulfillment of the existing orders. If you know something about wood, you know the raw, unfinished, stuff soaks up moisture and joints never fit right. So I’m slow in cutting and tired of waiting for glues to dry.

That may not fully explain why I’m watching the rain fall and fat chewing with DD and Rimshot. But it is sufficient justification. It is all good company. Rimshot is having a problem like mine. There is not much you can do with wet ground. DD is between seasons. He’s a custom jeweler and his demands depend mostly on the seasons.

Rimshot lowers his beer and says: “So, you’re saying that if I see only one over card behind me, I should raise?”

The subject, now that I’ve yanked you into the shop, is about Seven Card Stud. DD had raised a point about third street and low end high pairs. He’d said . . . Well, let him tell it.

“Third Street,” DD said: “with only one over card behind you, go ahead and raise with a high pair.”

 “What happens if that over card re-raises me?” Rim shot asked.

“Then your pair should be hidden for you to call,” DD explains.

“Before you boys get to arguing over much,” I say, “do you know what a dead card is in Stud, Rimshot??

“What? Of course! It’s any card I can see on the board.”

“Um. Rimshot, what about the folded hands, and isn’t it really the cards you can see on the board that you need, that are dead?” I asked him.

“But with my high pair I don’t need those cards if they won’t help me,” Rimshot injects. “Those low cards are gappers and non-suiters.”

DD and I exchange glances, I shrug and DD nods.

“Rimshot,” he says, “those cards are likely still alive to the holders if they stay in the hand. They could be on a draw and what not. You’re overlooking a valid tenant of the game, my friend.”

Rimshot doesn’t have what you could call a poker face, though he’s practicing and coming along well with it. But while expressions chase themselves across his face I get three beers and he covers popping the top.

“The tenant is?” he asks.

“In all of poker,” DD preaches, “the first thing to do is play the other guys hand. In Stud, it might be a good idea to play all the other guys hands first. That means remembering what you saw and the way they bet, and a bunch of other things.”

“Christ!” Rimshot yelps. “What’da you think I am? A woman or something? Remember all the odd things going on.”

I had been in the middle of taking a swallow of beer when he came up with that one and about choked.

“Ah, Rimshot, women gain second sight about a guy over time, not necessarily over the poker table. Well, I hope,” I say.

DD’s laughing in his silent way. This one tickled him.

“Rimshot, stick to the low and medium limits, Man. That way when you get into the situation you’ve just named, it will be more than likely that the player has exactly what he is representing,” DD says, grinning. “And if your wife says she’s fixing to shorten you an inch or so, you’ll believe she has a sharp instrument handy.”

Rimshot looks at DD in mild surprise and thinks back a bit and nods. He opens his mouth to ask another and DD says: “Rimshot, it isn’t really about how well you think you can play, is it? It’s all about how well you do play. So just play as mistake free as you can and it should be fine for you.”

Find the ongoing Back Room Tales in our Poker Wall Section - or type The Back Room in 'search.'  And for the sake of discussion, you'll find The Back Room tales in this thread in the forum.

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