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I don't play live too much anymore because in the past couple of years the local illegal card room games here have gotten really big and while they are often very beatable you can also easily lose it all - and I mean all, that's how big they are.

So I tell the guys at Chak's to give me a call if anything in the 20/40 to 50/100 range starts up. Sometimes I'll play higher limits but only if the game starts off lower, and even then only if I'm ahead.

Why am I boring you with this? Because I had a lot of fun last night playing live and I think I played really, really good against a surprisingly more difficult lineup than I expected but still they weren't too tough. Well, I played good except for one little hiccup but never mind about that now.

Anyway, I've won five or six medium pots in a row, the last three of them I cold called one or two bets with big preflop hands and they all held up so now the hotshots are looking at me thinking wtf.

The first to act decides to open limp and (I've got to admit to blushing a bit as I write this) I raised. With 6h4h.

Why did I do that? Honestly, I remember thinking I really want to play this one but that it would be stupid to do so which makes a limp out of the question but then I thought it's even more stupid to raise and when the word "raise" popped into my brain something short circuited and the word then slid out of my mouth like it was some kind of science fiction movie.

Of course then I had to follow up and put some chips on the table.

As always happens when this kind of boo-boo occurs, the thug to my left reraised. He smiled at me as he did so. I could tell he had eaten green vegetables for dinner. We got three callers, both blinds and utg. I called of course.

The flop was Jc7h5h. Everybody was really disconcerted when I wrote Jc7h5h onto the coaster in front of me. Thugly looked at me with particular suspicion, as if to say "I know you are cheating, I'm just not sure how but I'll figure it out so be careful."

I would've said "Thugly, this hand has all the makings of an On Tilt post, that's why I'm recording it" but I suspect he would have beaten me up or something, thinking it likely that I was trying to make a fool out of him.

The SB checked, the BB bet, utg folded, I called, thugly called SB folded. (AK Thugly?)

The turn was 5c. The BB bet, I raised, Thugly thought and thought and thought, alternating his squinty pig-eyed glare between my face and the continued doodling on the coaster (which had gone beyond just the board cards) the whole time. He finally called but the BB didn't, he folded.

The river was the Qd so the board looks like this: Jc 7h 5h 5c Qd. I bet...Thugly went deep, deep into the think tank. I'm not sure what he was pondering, for all I know he was still trying to figure out why I was writing the board cards down on the coaster. He certainly kept staring at it enough. But finally, finally, he called. Oh well.

I'm pretty sure I almost took that one down. I congratulated Thugly on his good call with AK as I mucked my cards. He looked at me strangely for awhile. "I didn't know if you were cuffing with me or not when you kept writing down there" he finally said, nodding at the coaster, now full of my doodling.

I glanced at it, then looked at it again and sure enough, somehow, for some unknown reason, I had doodled in fancy scrawl "6h 4h", over and over and over again. I guess in real world poker one could safely call that a tell, no?


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