Sell what you have, give the money to the poor and follow me...
Reading Negreanuís recent blog I know exactly how he feels. Heís had such undeniable success, so consistently and for such a long time, doing something in theory really quite simple and yet strangely enough hardly anyone truly and deeply follows his lead. He also has a teaching poker site that Iím guessing gets little traffic or at least nowhere near the traffic that it should if his approach to tournament poker is, as it seems to be, the most effective and profitable approach out there.
Welcome to my world, Daniel, and the world we all inhabit. People do not seem to want to do the simple things that will bring them success and happiness. Instead they more often choose to do the thing that fits into a delusional way they want themselves to be seen. Most poker players want to see themselves as hotshot bad-asses making sick moves and pawning the donks not up to speed. They want to be the uber-cool move-makers that donít get pushed around, and instead make dynamic, daring, meta-game, plus EV moves on their obviously outclassed foes. For then simple truths are for simpletons and patience is for patsies.
The simple fact that over time, in cash games, it is way more important how much you donít lose than it is how much you win doesnít fit well into the swashbuckling, poker cocksman, view many players want to hold of themselves. The near universally considered best cash game poker player ever, Chip Reese, was specifically known as the guy who lost the least while running bad and yet you rarely ever hear this discussed, much less promoted, as something to be seriously practiced and studied. Itís not glamorous, doesnít ďsellĒ and does not fit into the desired illusion. Bankroll management and control over oneís childish emotions is often grudgingly seen as semi-important but mostly for nits and those not as gonadically blessed as the Heroes.
There is always a much bigger market out there for things to keep one solidly in delusion than there is for things that actually take introspection, brief glimpses of reality, and good-old fashioned hard work. And by hard work I donít mean the African salt mine variety, but more along the lines of taking a deep breath and reconsidering the true validity of those ďFOUR MINUTES A WEEK AB WORKOUTS!Ē type enticements, and the possible plus side of maybe eating a non-fried veggie from time to time or its equivalent.
If you are a serious poker player and you look at Negreanuís deep stack tournament approach and you choose to not consider it, hopefully you can be honest enough to realize you are in a large way making this decision not because it does not work but because you donít have, or donít think you can develop, the clarity and personal responsibility and control to effectively practice it. Looking down on his small ball approach as a less ďballsyĒ way to play is only appropriate if you actually have the ability to practice such a successful method and then you actively choose to do otherwise.
You donít applaud degenerate gamblers for getting out there and ďnot being afraid to gamble it upĒ any more than you would applaud the mentally challenged for ďnot paying any attention to the math and playing a feel game.Ē I covered this topic a ways back in the article ĎThe Moral use of Prostitutes.Ē
Itís a strange thing-- easily seeing a certain series of choices that will, without doubt, greatly improve the quality of anotherís life, making those choices in your own life and having them widely applauded and yet having trouble convincing many of those same others out there in the world to decide to learn and adopt this same simple strategy in their own lives.
Itís got to be one of lifeís greatest mysteries.
Thanks for reading.
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