I played in a poker cash game that I haven't played in before on Saturday night. The game itself was fun, the host, Ron, did a nice job and the players were solid. The stakes were lower than I usually play, but I didn't mind as I needed a low key game to get myself back on track for this year. I did win about 50 bucks so that puts me back to even for the year if you don't count the small win in online play.
The very 1st hand I got paid off big by a person with top pair when I had 2 pair. It was probably because I was a new face. Most new players are often thought of as trying to steal or bluff alot. Shortly after the big pot I earned respect as a tight player and most of my raises were met with little skepticism and folds. As a result I made 2 successful bluffs and 1 bad bluff that I couldn't follow through with on the river because I knew I was getting called if I fired a 3rd bullet. I've made less and less bluffs in cash games through the years and it's been paying well for me. Basically, when I face solid players like I did, I usually sit back and wait for mistakes. As a general rule, I try to only bluff once per hour unless a good situation pops up.
It's boring to do that, but thankfully the company was fun enough that I could wait for big hands. As the night wore on, the players, who were drinking high quality scotches and bourbons, were getting looser and looser. I wasn't catching cards as well as I hoped, but I made enough hands to be a winner for the night. I could've made about 20 bucks more if I didn't keep adding to the straddle. I'll have to remember it's a dumb play and you'll usually lose money if everyone doesn't participate.
With my small online success and Saturday's win, I feel more focused going into this weekend's tourney. There will be more players than usual, so I'll have to listen to my own advice and sit back and wait for mistakes. They will come and hopefully, I'll be there to capitalize on them and not make any of my own.