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Sleepless in Fulham: Rambling and gambling by David Young
Thursday, 6 July 2006
Tales from the Vic.
Topic: Poker
About six months ago a regular recreational player at the Vic told me that he was trying to get the management to change the structure of the £100 game from two blinds of £2 to two blinds of £3. He insisted this was necessary to make the games better and that it would get rid of the 'rocks'. I tried to explain that it would merely make him lose money 50 per cent faster. He wouldn't listen.

Soon after that converasation, the Vic did just what he wanted. Yesterday I met him again. Noting that there was no omaha game running at 8pm and that the omaha action had been pretty weak for some time, he asked me 'David, where are the omaha players? What's happened to the game?'

This isn't the only costly change that the club has made. Back in February, the decision was made to move the cash games to the upstairs floor. It was done on the same day that the card room manager went on holiday. At the time I had minor reservations about whether it would affect the liveliness of the action, as the games would be less accessible. But what really annoyed me was that players were subjected to the piped music from the overhead speakers and that we were also made to hear the music from the restaurant.

After six days in which I lost four times, I decided that I could no longer accept the chance that these irritations were affecting my game. So I told Jeff that I wouldn't be back for a while and settled down to playing online. That was in February. It went OK, but with the arrival of summer I don't want to be sat indoors, as my flat gets very hot and I crave air-conditioning. So I went back to playing at the Vic a couple of weeks ago and found that it was much quieter than it had been in January. The festival week was very poorly attended, apart from the Monday and the cash action on other days was far below the level of a normal festival.

It seems that the Vic has finally noticed the problem and from Monday next week, cash games are moving downstairs. Rejoice! Rejoice! I'm not saying that the downstairs room is a paradise. The air-conditioning is erratic and the room is small for its needs, but it will be a joy not to have to listen to the karaoke waiter who sings in the restaurant every night and the dreary ballad music from the overhead feed.

Thursday, 6 July 2006 - 7:36 PM BST

Name: "Kevin"


Do you think moving will make a difference, or is it a case of too little too late? I personally think other clubs speading poker has had much more of an effect on the room, the floor change was just bad timing.

 The managment has put lots of effort in trying to force the closure of other rooms, but has neglected its own room. The room is too deep in the shit, to be able to return to anything like it was 3-4 yrs ago.

Friday, 7 July 2006 - 2:23 AM BST

Name: "anonymous"

David I want to ask you a question.

You are a cash player and not a tournament player. Why then do you still enter tournaments and donate your money?

Friday, 7 July 2006 - 2:26 AM BST

Name: "David Young"

You are certainly correct that the management has been more concerned with hurting other rooms than serving its own customers. In January for instance, the Vic spent £18,000 on freeroll tournaments that were solely designed to hurt the Sportsman's Monday night competitions. Dominic and I were furious.

It gets rather annoying trying to help the Vic. I've said a million times that they should offer to pay the congestion charge for people who come in the afternoons. They could at least have a CC terminal. Why not pay the charge for people who arrive at 3 and are still there at 7? What do they do instead? Piss £18,000 away throwing out the red carpet for people who only come a few times a year, instead of getting to know the people who come every week. I realise that some poker players are prima donnas but they could do more to find out what we want. It's all so sad.

 You must understand that for me the Vic is something special because it's the only casino that's run primarily for cash games, rather than for tournaments designed to pull punters in to the roulette. It's also got one massive asset - the underground car park.


Friday, 7 July 2006 - 2:40 AM BST

Name: "David Young"

I'm perhaps guilty of creating the impression that I can't play tournaments. I can. For instance I've played the comps at the Sportsman four times and scored one outright win, no deals (£4,000) and one third prize (£712). So I'm well in front there.

Of course, comps aren't usually the best use of my time. That said I don't always feel like playing cash. Furthermore I would one day like to win a big one and must therefore keep up to date with who's playing and how they play. I think it's easy to overrate the famous names in tournament play. I can think of many 'name players' who are considered tournament experts who can go through two weeks of festival action without once making the money and yet are still considered great players. Nobody notices how often they try and fail. I may be as good as they are, but the fact that I play about one sixth as many competitions as they do means that I'm not hitting the headlines when I do get a result.



Saturday, 8 July 2006 - 4:51 AM BST

Name: "anonymous"

Good luck in making the headlines DY. We are all capable of doing it. I guess life would change after one big win. I have not been playing in the big comps yet due to not having an adequate bankroll. I plan to start playing in them when possible. We are all good enough to win a big one, this could change your life. Gus Hansen is a classic example. I do not believe that he is a great player at all.

Good luck in the big ones.

Sunday, 9 July 2006 - 5:19 PM BST

Name: "Andy Ward"


Don't get carried away with this.  I've changed my life by playing regularly and solidly in games that are within bankroll that I can beat.  Yes, I have changed my life - I was on a four day week for three years because poker enabled me to do that and I have now quit !  I may well end up taking a part time, non-stressful job just to balance out my life but the change is still massive.

And the real point is I haven't had to get lucky to do it.  Think about it.


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