High Rake, Gambling + Protected Fish: Recipe for a Good Game

It’s been a long time since I Rock 'n 'Rolled.

I have so many other things to do, and quite frankly I lost my love for poker a long time ago.

If that happens to you, seriously start planning your exit right away. The sooner the better because one day it can be too late.

You will be one of the ghosts you swore would never be you.

Happy Being a Recreational Player

Ken Lennaard
Always passionate if the game is good.

There's a chance that I will find the love for the game again but until then I'm happy with being a recreational player.

And I'm always passionate about the game if the game is good.

There is a game, a very good game, somewhere in a big city in Europe I won't name.

My friend has played in it for nearly 10 years now and has made a very pleasant life out of it. Not primarily in it, but outside of it with the money won.

It's not nearly as good as it used to be but all it takes is one humongous whale to spread the joy of prosperity.

The game has one or two of those, but when they don’t play I guess it’s not worth a detour.

A couple of weeks ago I had to go to the American continent on a business trip. The flight there went from said unnamed city and, finally, I got into the game.

Every Seat is Next to a Chain Smoker

I have been to many private clubs over the world and over time.

They're pretty much the same everywhere; pretty good security, good food and very good games. And of course with a more polluted air than the London Fog of 1952.

Private games always let the fish smoke, and in all countries below Germany all people smoke.

Jim Meehan
In private games, everyone's a chimney.

I got a seat next to a chain smoker. It was not bad luck; every seat in the house was next to a chain smoker.

The ashtray was pushed very close to me so I could see his cocktail sausages holding the cigarette in front of my face and the smoke had a direct line into my nose.

Why don't scientists research why the smoke from a lit cigarette always goes into the face of the non-smoker?

That's something I really would like to know. Who cares about the stars in the universe when a mystery like that finds your way into your eyes every possible time?

Take Care of the Fish and the House

The game had a lot of special rules. As always, created to care for the fish and the house.

The game was dealer’s choice: No-Limit Hold'em with a €20 ante and PLO with €10/€20 blinds.

The buy in was €1,000. Everybody paid €100 as a time fee for 90 minutes.

The last round the blinds were raised to a €50 ante in Hold'em and €20/€40 blinds in PLO. After that you could take away all the chips in front of you and start over with a thousand.

You could only leave before a 90-minute period was over if you went broke. You were also expected to tip the dealer and the waitress.

It sounds insane, I know. But it is really smart of the club owners. They take a really high rake, promote gambling and protect the fishes.

I would do the same. If you don’t like it, you don’t have to play.

The Very Definition of Insane

Efficient trawling.

I’ll tell you what’s really insane:

Online poker networks taking extremely high rake and only giving discounts to the pros. And even allowing the pros to have technical software to trawl even more efficiently.

On top of that they allow the pros to bumhunt and deride the fishes. That’s actually the very definition of insane.

Another thing about private poker games is that they always play at night.

I assume it's because the fish have to work during the daytime, but I could be wrong.

All in all it was a good night for me. I slept on the plane over the Atlantic Ocean instead.

About Ken Lennaárd:

Sweden's most controversial poker blogger Ken Lennaárd has been around the professional poker circuit for almost 20 years. Among his numerous accomplishments are Swedish Championships both live and online, three WSOP final tables and over $1.5m in live earnings. He's now bringing his singular poker voice to the English world via PokerListings.com. Look for new posts every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Note: Opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not represent the views of PokerListings.com.

Best Poker Sites - Editor`s Pick