The number of people who've told me over the years "You'd make a good poker player" is large. The number of those who I'd expect to have a clue what that means is... smaller.

 

So with time on my hands this autumn, I decided it was time to find out - from a standing start. Never watched any poker on the telly. Had seen friends Facebooking or tweeting about their wins and losses, and their bad beat bust outs against offsuit trashes, but frankly they were just talking words at me. I think I knew what a flush was when I joined PS, but where that fitted in with other hands - clueless. See a clue? Nope. No clue. 

PSO, I've concluded, is an awesome resource. It ought to come with a glossary and probably does, but the basic course left me ready to join a play money table for the first time, and at the 20th attempt I plucked up courage to not only join one but to actually participate in a hand. It probably didn't go well.

"Sod it", I said. There's 8 free bucks waiting for me. Let's have them. And accordingly, http://www.pokerschoolonline.com/forum/showthread.php?55070-Bankroll-builder happened. Scary stuff, and I somehow got away with it with a slight profit to the 8 bucks. A few tentative attempts at the Open Skill League have also revealed a few things - the third attempt made the money, and experimentally entering a middle of the night Europe time running and simply not playing provided positive points. Don't tell anyone though - that's probably desperately ungentlemanly behaviour. 

STT and MTT courses were soon passed too, and while the free STT tickets frittered away, $3.30 of MTT proved delightfully profitable in a 30 minute Time tourney and took the bankroll through $20 for the first time. I like Time tourneys. They suit my combination of newbie tightness and utter incompetence at playing the latter stages of a tournament very nicely.

I like Sit and Go 50Fifty tourneys too, for the same reason, and so far my record is good (albeit flawed - a stupid bustout in 6th place in a hand I didn't need to play was annoying, but these are the lessons we must learn).

I also have a least favourite hand of alltime already at a cash table. I believe that when you pull two opponents all-in preflop AA vs. AKo vs. T3o and end up losing the hand to threes full of tens, that is widely regarded as a "bad beat".  However, if you'd said that a month ago I would have looked blankly and said "You are just talking words at me". It's an improvement.

I'm through $30 now for the first time. A session at the Team Online 2c/4c Zoom tables yesterday proved wildly profitable even without encountering the professional, and I had the good sense to pull out whilst wildly in profit.

November next, and I need some tasks. My main aim is simply to be in profit, but I hope I can get myself somewhere near to a $50 to $60 bankroll whilse sticking mostly to the 1/2c cash tables. If I can play enough to make ChromeStar in the process and get myself into the December freerolls, that would be nice. Getting a bit better at playing postflop would be very nice.

But mostly, let's just keep this escalator moving upwards, make some more mistakes and (optional) learn from them!