Monday, 18 April 2011

12tabling, Greek vs Portuguese and moving up (again!)

Hi everyone!

It's a wonderful sunny day as I'm writing this and I don't feel like playing all that much, so I'm going to delay today's session a little bit by writing a post.

(Un)fortunately, the weather since the beginning of the month has been very nice. Those of you who live in Lisbon know what I'm talking about... Not too hot, not too cold, just perfect. We tossed all the heavy clothes and jackets to the back of the closet and brought out t-shirts and bathing suits. It feels like summer is here a bit early this year. Anyway, with all these perfect-for-coffee-out-with-friends conditions, it was extra hard to stay inside the house in front of a computer screen and play poker. I forced myself to do it, but I didn't really feel like it. The result? I'm a bit behind schedule on my way to Platinum, but I'm still very confident that I'll make it.

After my last post, I increased the number of tables I was playing. I kept adding one per day, so it didn't take me long to get to 12. I do find it hard to 12table though. I've been 12tabling for about two weeks now, but I still find it hard sometimes... I have accidentaly folded kings and jacks because I ran out of time bank and I don't necessarily make the best plays when I'm playing 2 heads-up and 4 bubbles at the same time along with my other 6 tables. This step definately takes more time for me to get used to. But oh well, same as with every other time I added tables, it's just a matter of practice so I don't worry too much about it.

Moving up to the $6.5s was pretty intimidating at first, but it all turned out well. I'll let the graph speak for itself:

But even with those good results (that were far better than those I had at the $3.4s), I still felt like I should be profiting from the good weather instead of playing poker non-stop. So when my boyfriend left for Vilamoura to play the PPS, I decided to tag along. Of course, this was no time for vacation, so I went there prepared: I took a laptop with all the necessary programs installed so that I wouldn't miss anything while playing, and my book to study whenever I couldn't play. Here's the proof:

Needless to say, I didn't read a single page of the book, and I only did a mini session of 11 tables during my stay at Vilamoura. I think the pictures are self-explanatory as to why that happened. On the bright side, this mini excursion satisfied my needs for sun and going out, so now I'm a lot more motivated to play than before.

Speaking of playing on a laptop, this was an experience I've never had before. As I've mentionned in a previous post, I've been blessed with a "professional poker player" equipment since the beginning of my poker adventures, when I started out with only one table and I didn't put all that computer stuff to good use. While playing on a laptop, I had to have the lobby on top of TableNinja, on top of Holdem Manager, on top of my teenie tiny tables. I can't play in cascade which doesn't help either. Even pushing the tiny bet slider all-in was a challenge. Not to mention that everything was significantly slower. The shock of the downgrade was huge, which made me think about all those people that play poker on their laptops. I know for a fact that there are players who make a LOT more money than me at the tables playing at laptops and under worse conditions overall. You guys are HEROES! May I suggest, however, that you invest on a good screen asap. Anyway, it's not that I didn't cherish my computer setup before, but that mini-session on the laptop made me appreciate it even more!

Oh, but I was telling you about our stay at Vilamoura. So there we are, rushing out of the hotel to go to the casino when we run into two familiar faces. Andé stops to say hi and I see Henrique Pinho standing next to me. We have been introduced in the past, so I limit myself to say "Olá" and kiss him on the cheeks. I need to point out that there are two singificant differences between the Greeks and the Portuguese here: 1) In a situation like this where the people do not know each other very well, in Greece a simple handshake or a simple verbal greeting is more common than kissing, and 2) when kissing does occur, the Greeks start from the right side while the Portuguese start from the left. That means that a Greek trying to kiss a Portuguese can result into a complicated/embarrassing situation. Imagine people accidentatly kissing each other on the lips instead of the cheeks or at the best case scenario tilting their heads from left to right until finding a spot where they agree to start from. Fortunately, I've been in Portugal for quite a few months now so by now I'm used to starting on the left (I get a bit confused when I go back to Greece but ok :P).

So after the first and successful (!) attempt, I turn to the girl who kisses me too and says "Olá Katerina!". Before I have any time to congratulate myself for adjusting so well into the portuguese way of greeting, I mumble an "Olá" back to her and sit there all baffled about how she knew my name. I'm convinced that I've met her somewhere before, and feel embarassed that I don't remember her name while she remembers mine. AWKWARD! André, however, who is in a hurry to get to the casino before the tournament starts, saves the day and pulls me away from that weird spot. As we move away I ask "Who was she?". "Catarina Santos", he replies. "Oh wait!", I say the realization of what just happened coming to me. "Was I supposed to say my name back there?". You see, there's another thing the Portuguese have. While in between the two kisses they quickly throw in their names to introduce themselves. I had forgotten about that, as we Greeks normaly wait to be introduced by the common friend who would say something like "Catarina this is Katerina". The fact that the pronounciation of the two names is almost identical didn't help either. Ok, there is a slight change that is very obvious to the Portuguese, but to my greek ears honestly, both names sound the same. So there. As André is laughing about the whole thing, I feel even more embarassed for appearing anti-social or too snobbish to introduce myself. Greek vs Portuguese: 0-1. (At least he run into Catarina Santos for a second time in the casino and explained the whole thing to her... :P)

So, as our stay at the wonderful Crowne Plaza was coming to an end, we sit nearby the pool enjoying the sun and relaxing. "I've been thinking", André starts and I can already tell by the tone of his voice that it's not going to be good, "that you should move up to the $16s when we go back to Lisbon tomorrow". His justification for that was that after Poker's Black Friday people tend to play with real money as if it was play money due to the delays of cashing out, so the games are going to be softer and therefore it is a good time to move up. I get a slight panic attack but I overcome my urge to throw him into the swimming pool. There are too many people around anyway. The $16s? Really? I've only been playing the $6.5s for what, half a month? Anyway, he has been right in everything he's told me so far so since I don't have any ground to doubt him I let the idea sink in.

By the way, my sympathy goes out to all the Americans who were playing poker for a living and suddenly found themselves "unemployed" or to those who just loved to play the game and were deprived of their favourite hobby. I hope that things work out so that they are able to play again as soon as possible. Adding to that, I don't see any reason for poker players to panic. Yes, it does affect the rest of the world if Americans play with us or not in terms of traffic at the tables and the games being easier or harder, but that's as far as it goes. Personally, I don't feel that the money in my PokerStars account is threatened in any way and will continue playing same as before if not more.

I gave my first try at the $16s yesterday. I also had my longest poker session ever: 11 hours (with small breaks of course). It went pretty well, and I ended just $10 negative. I lost all of my profit during the last hour of play so it could be because I was tired. I was going for 12 hours but I stopped opening tables cause I couldn't take it anymore.

When I started writing this post it was sunny, but now it's all rainy and dark. I knew it was a good thing to delay today's session! Now I have the perfect weather for indoors poker activity. Wish me luck cause I'm not comfortable with the idea of playing the $16s yet... :P 

See you at the tables!

P.S.: Sorry for making another gigantic post, hm, maybe I should write more often to prevent this from happening?


  1. Nice post! Keep up the good work and good luck in your session :)

  2. Yeah, u should make short posts xD try to establish a day or 2 per week to write.

    I'm on 12 tabling too, it’s hard but we can do it.

    As for the hotel, I’ve been there in February to play Solverde Season and it stayed there and its very nice, although the time was not good for swim.

    Good luck in $16s, and about the weather … it got bad today, and its going to be for all of the week so you’ll have a lot of time for poker and study.

    PS: I’ve bought the Moshman’s book and I’ve started it already. Thanks for the advice.

  3. I really enjoy your post

    Very good indeed....

    Wish you luck in the 16s,you'll see that right now,the 16s are very close,to the 6.5

    I'll continue reading your blog,everytime you post

    PS - I would say,for you to add me,but right now,I always post,in Portuguese

  4. Now as it should be: "hello Katerina, I'm Catarina"... eheheh it was really nice to meet you. Hope we can meet again to continue that HU :)

  5. hi there. I found your blog recently and I just love it. I am starting to play poker and hope it can be helpfull. I "bought" the book secrets of sit n gos but I find it very hard to understand , can you recomend me something else to start with?
    or should I make an effort to keep reading it?

  6. @Lucky Lady: Thank you, good luck 2u2!

    @Pokericks: Gl with 12tabling and Moshman, I saw you've been getting some good results lately so hopefully it's working out for u!

    @mrjonnhy : From what I've seen so far the $16s have quite a bit of a difference comparing to the $6.5s... More about that in an upcoming post! Added your blog already!

    @Catarina Santos: It was really nice to meet you too! Thanx for stopping by! :)

    @dollardmillions: I'm really happy you like my blog! "Secrets of sit n gos" was my first book too, it can be a bit heavy if you're new to poker, may I suggest you start off with “Sit'n Go Strategy” by Collin Moshman. It's easier to read if it's your first book cause it's simple, starts with the basics and has examples for every theory presented. You can get it here: . The site has the best prices you can find online plus free delivery.

  7. Hello Katerina i just found your blog, which is very very nice i try to do the same things as you did, sorry for my bad english but i have a question, can you tell me with what sit n go did you started with turbos? and if yes when did you made the transition to hyper turbos?

    1. Hello there! I honestly don't remember if the sngs I played when I started were turbos or not, it's been a few years... But maybe you can find that info if you go through my earlier posts on this blog. Regarding the transition... It wasn't as much a transition as it was a fresh start. I had taken a big pause from poker and decided to play the hypers when I resumed. That was in 2012.


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