I've always thought live tournaments were a more respectful game than online....but that was until a recent game at my local casino.  You see when playing face to face its very difficult to say an offensive insult, whilst online there is no such barrier bar the moderators....


I played the £50 tournament in a live game.  I often put on a certain air to encourage aggressive bets against me....obviously this doesnt lead to gaining the respect of people who fall for the act, but generally people remain at least tolerant of me.  However, this time I was treated to a player across the table humming the thomas the tank engine theme tune every time I tried to make a decision.  Does he mean I'm a calling station or am I coming into the station?!  I laughed at first but this got annoying quickly.  If only there had of been a mute button, I would have pressed it!

Its strange at a casino a large proportion of the players are "regulars" they play every night all know each other, their styles of play etc and I guess the comadarie of being problem gamblers unites them.  Although there certainly is in fighting!  Its just when anyone threatens their little cartel then the hackles are raised.  I won back to back there last year - it kind of shatters the illusion of me being a fish....however, with a reasonable turnover of players then I can get away with it again 5-6 months down the line (no playing live reguarly).

My brother who joined me for the live game was having a worse time than me.  As I walked past I noticed the guy sat next to him would repeatedly hit the table making my bros stacks of chips fall over.  Once or twice funny every hand is being a d***.  In addition to this he was taking his muck cards adding them to own looking at them then discarding all 4.  My bro told the dealer twice who warned the player the second time which made him even more aggressive.  To make things worse the guy on his right was sitting diagonally facing him to try and see his cards.  This was my brothers first time paying a live tournament outside of a pub league so what a lovely welcome, a baptism of fire for sure!!

Back to my table - Thomas the Tank engine gets knocked out by some aggressive playing guy, I resist the urge to hum the theme tune.  Interesting that guy plays everytime I go there but strangely I never see him win but yet he criticises everyones play.  Being an ex-croupier I guess he feels superior......aye I guess a minium wage job can do that for the ego!

I spin my 20k starting stack to over 70k, as my chips go up so does the level of abuse. Considering these guys are particularly aggressive players they take great exception to me reshoving.  They literally have 1 tactic - not sure thats the pro players tool kit required to play every night!! 

Sadly I let the wind up get to me usually I invite it....I changed the way I played to avoid the criticism and then played the slow death game for a couple of hours going down to 45k folding to reraises every time.  Eventually I walked KQ into Aces pre flop and crashed out.  So I go over to see how my brother is coping with the "tender ministrations" of the cheating players......

I see my bro re-raise the small blind from the big blind, the small blind goes all in, he calls and flips over aces the other guy 87 offsuit.  A straight comes down for the latter.  Oh dear, as he stands up the guy that was looking at his mucked cards mutters "finally".  My brother snaps back,"this is my first live tournament, your in here every night and can only beat me like that." The guy who is pretty big stands up and slams his fist down on the poker table yet again.  Clearly hes had some bad beats before and taking it out on the table! Before my brother turns around and leaves.

So will be a while before I go back there I guess or I'll at least wear head phones!  I guess online has the capacity for more anonymous abuse almost like swearing at a motorist whilst you drive past, but live, now live poker when you play with a d*** at your table it is the most irritating thing ever!!