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I never lie when playing poker

It’s true. It’s a rule I’ve adopted. And people never believe me even though I tell them that and am not lying. It’s an odd thing. One time I was in a hand that was the final two in a tournament. If I win, I get about $1,000 if I come in second, I get about $500. My opponent had me out chipped but not by much. I gathered my opponent was new to poker and had managed to get lucky.

The blinds were big enough that it was either put all your money in or fold. But not so big as to go all with any two. I was first to act and I looked at my top card, a queen. I didn’t even look at the second one and announced I was “all in”. He noticed I didn’t look and asked me why I’d go all in without looking. And I said “math”. He, as I said being new, said “what?” and I said it was mathematically correct to do that. I even told him I had a face card, again not lying. I explained that as long it my other card was a 7 or better, it was 50.01ish to 49.09ish (yeah, I know math nerds that’s not exact but it’s good enough for poker) vs. any hand and the antes were so big it was the mathematically correct play. And odds are my other card was 7 or better. He didn’t believe me or math. And called. He flipped up an Ace and a four and I turned over my second card, that I had not looked at, and it was another queen. He didn’t improve and I won the hand. He was convinced I’d managed to look at the second card using sleight of hand or something. And he was pretty mad. But he actually made a good call based on what I told him and math, which was the truth. I even told him that. He was still pissed.

And after that hand, I told him the blinds were big enough that it was go all in with any cards since I had the lead and he was crippled. He didn’t believe me. His chips were blinded away as he folded and folded and folded.

At the poker table, no one believes you even if you tell the truth.

5 Responses to “I never lie when playing poker”

  1. USCitizen Says:

    Poker rules: expect the unexpected.

  2. mikee Says:

    I had a drama professor in college who was an accomplished magician. He demonstrated “close up” magic more than once to his classes, doing sleight of hand within a foot of the observer’s face.

    I could never see him palm the card or deal from the bottom of the deck, even when he explained exactly what he was doing.

    He ended every lecture with the admonition, “And that is why you should never gamble for money outside a casino.”

  3. bwm Says:

    I don’t understand why you’d educate them though. Just tell him you feel lucky about this hand and hush. Now he knows that you can employ maths in pokerz – yeah, I know: he probably won’t put in the effort to learn it, but still…

    …Says the guy who hasn’t played a hand of poker in 18 months. Sometimes I start jonesing for some insane PLO action still.

  4. nk Says:

    Whatever you were playing, it was a card game, but it was not poker. There are three poker games — seven card stud, five card stud, five card draw. Go fish.

  5. Slawson Says:

    Poker has become so big over the last decade or so that there are so many people playing who don’t really know what they are doing. (I don’t play because I don’t know what I’m doing and don’t feel like giving my money away) I used to work with an electrical engineer who didn’t get a job after getting his degree, he played poker for 7 months and paid off his student loans. Then he got a job.

Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you.

Uncle Pays the Bills


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