It was like watching the (Battlestar) Pegasus explode.
-Me to Mark on Ryan busting out of the FTOPS Main Event in 1348th place.
So I'm in the big blind with 44. I'm down to 1,250 chips from the original 3,000 that you start the $500+35 FTOPS Main Event with. UTG+1 has raised and I think we could race.
So I push all-in.
Woops. He shows KK.
But then the flop comes -- 4x4. And immediately I think that someone wants me to be playing this.
I'm not sure why I wanted to play in a $500 buy-in tournament, but I just decided that I would. I told Mark about it and he sent me $107 to stake me for a 20 percent share. At about the same time I was in a Full Tilt $69+6 132 player satellite -- 17 places received free seats.
I ran total luckbox in that one. I hit set after set after set and when I didn't play my small pocket pairs, they still turned into sets. I placed 13th to win the free seat.
I took a brief nap and then was back for the 6 p.m. Main Event. The tables were tight -- it wasn't too long after the sloppy quad hand that I started raising with abandon. I jacked it up with 72 offsuit to show blogger solidarity. Everyone folded.
It wasn't too long before I noticed 1,000 people out of the 1,468-player tournament bounced out. Earlier in the tournament, Ryan was also playing and it was a comfort to know that I would swap a 5 percent share with the guy who made the money in the WSOP Main Event.
But it wasn't too long before he raised the flop with 88. The other guy had KK and that was that, I was on my own.
I get 66 utg+2 and develop a spidey sense and fold. The button raises all in and the small blind reraises all-in. They have QJ and AJ, respectively. An ace falls on the flop, but a 6 comes on the river.
Another hand comes where this guy is all-in. I have AK and am not sure what to do.
So I consult the dice. 1-3 I call.
I roll a 2. He shows 88 and I hit a K on the flop. (This guy later busts out in 361st place).
By the time the third hour break comes, I'm in the move-in zone with 5,880 chips. Some guy with 4,528 chips is all-in with AT and is called by a guy with KJ. You almost want to root for the short stack because you know you'll be in the same situation later.
UTG+2, I push all in with 76s. A big stack with 18,600 chips thinks about it. I'm so doomed if he calls. He folds.
People are dropping. John Juanda is gone. Allen Cunningham is out. All of the red-highlighted pro names are dropping like the Jedi against Grievous. If I can just pull through the next few rounds...
I have JK on the button. There are two limpers and I'm wary of limp traps from big stacks, because that's what I'd do.
Should I push, I ask Mark on IM.
Maybe? he says.
The time is ticking, so I pull out the dice. It's a 4. So I fold.
The flop is QT7, giving me an OESD possibility. But it would have been a dud.
I get AQ and push. All fold. Whew.
I'm in a tourney now where 57 percent of the field will be paid. It just depends which side I'm on.
It's getting to that part of the tournament when you can see your name at the bottom of the barrel. Kurokitty is at 244th place and it's a lot like seeing your own grave.
I feel paralyzed and my stack keeps getting smaller and smaller. Just then Troublecat (Ryan) pops up on IM, like a midget angel on my shoulder.
troublecatxx: looks like the cat needs a hand.
troublecatxx: or less of a hand now than an opportunity to get in first.
DanTraveler: it's like a coin flip for $900.
troublecatxx: got some active players at your table.
troublecatxx: I've flipped coins for $10K, man.
troublecatxx: what could you fold there?
DanTraveler: i should push but i keep getting A3, A4. not feeling it.
troublecatxx: um, you're folding hands with an ace?
troublecatxx: bad kitty!
troublecatxx: you can't fold into the money.
So I am resolved to be more aggressive. Finally, I get TT in the sb. There is 1 limper. I push anyway. He thinks about it, then folds, to the ridicule of the whole table.
Me and pro John Cernuto are circling the drain. In an instant, he's gone.
It comes around to me in the small blind. I have T8o. The dice say 3, push. But I tap the fold button.
Later I have KT. There is one limper. I roll the dice. It's a 1. I push and am up against QJs. I win.
Still short, I get A8o. I roll the dice. It's a two. Wanting a second opinion, I roll it again. It's a 3. I push. I get called by KQ. But I catch an 8 and win.
I'm at 18,000 chips. Just so I know what it's like to be on the other side, I take a peek at my place on the list. I'm at 108th place. 135 pay. I reset my calculator to tell me when I have to move in. It says 13,125. I am finally healhty.
I get ATo UTG+1 and again UTG. I fold them now that I have the luxury.
Some guy is yapping how the money doesn't mean anything but a golden jersey (for first) is forever. Yeah right.
"And all the female avatars have long legs and brains," I type, a play off of the movie Bull Durham. I then notice that maybe it's not funny to the female avatar to my left.
Mark says I could probably steal more now that everyone is close to the bubble and I agree. I raise with QTo on the button and get nearly reraised all-in by a short stack. I call and flop top pair with a T. I put him all in for 465 more and he shows A7s, no draw. He catches runner-runner trip aces.
I'm back on the outside, at 136th place of 151. Later I slide to 139. During the fourth hour break I sort of wish top 10 percent paid out.
The action comes around to me in the small blind and I have T7s. I'm not sure why, but I feel like I could try to steal it here, so I push all in. The female avatar immediately calls me with KT and catches a K. Maybe that's for my poor, inadvertent joke.
I'm out at 146th, eleven from the money.