20 January 2006

Duck Tongue and Other Matters

The above image came up when I googled duck photo, which looks a whole lot better than a real duck (she's ducking, get it?).

I've been stuck and away from Shanghai for the last 48 hours, so here are some observations from the trip:
  • Dishes I didn't eat: duck tongue (alot of mute ducks walking around China), sea urchins, dried shrimp
  • Dishes I tried: fried chicken bones, fish head, mystery meats, mystery crunchy thing from the sea, puffer fish (poisonous unless prepared just right)
  • Dishes I liked: noodles, spicy beef, spicy fish, peanuts (today)
  • Dishes hard to eat: crab (nothing to break open the shells/claws), some fish with bones and scales, chicken (with bones and skin), goose (same), pork (same)
  • Quickes lunch: two hours
  • Traffic lanes are sort of a guide for drivers in Shanghai. You can pass at any time, regardless of how many lanes or how many cars are coing toward you. The nicest move on the trip was when we passed someone passing someone on a two-lane road with a car coming toward us. Cars just sort of avoid oncoming traffic.
  • Most folks ride their bicycles miles and miles in any weather possible. If they don't have a bike, they walk miles and miles. A passenger will ride side saddle on the back of a bike, with his/her legs facing the left. I would assume there are no American adults who could last more than fifty yards like this.
  • We always think of Chinese costs being lower because of low wages, which is true. Costs remain low also by not heating any buildings. That includes restaurants (turn on a space heater when you book a room) or offices.
  • You have to be a little concerned when you go to a spa and two fifteen-year old boys who are locker attendants are grinning at you as they are taking your clothes off while they push you into a shower. I've seen myself naked, and that grin isn't really justified (unless it was laughing).
  • I'm not quite sure if there are ever specific schedules or times for meetings. We would miss a time by three hours with no apparent concern from anyone.
  • I can never embrace having to wear the same clothes two days in a row when on business.
Some poker at FullTilt Wednesday night. Ended up losing $379 in NLHE after being up around $400. Most of the loss due to overplaying high pairs after the flop, losing to a flopped set and a flopped two pair. Major leak for sure, and I still can't figure out how to play at FullTilt and be able to work off my bonus with no one actually playing there. I've been able to build my Party account to $2000 after the $400 buy-in in December.

I'm finishing Harrington's Volume II. I think I have to think a whole heck of a lot more when I'm playing than I currently do, or at the very least in tourneys. I'm a long way from mastering Harrington's methodology. I think it will take a great deal of simulator work to be able to automatically make all of the marginal decisions that he puts forward. The short version: make plays with hands when you have the right odds (meaning calling, raising, whatever with pot odds, implied pot odds, odds of players having hands, all that stuff). One really big question that I'd be interested in thoughts from everyone out there: is Harrington's advice only successful when you play a large number of tourneys. It also seems to be part of Raymer's you-can-only-make-the-best-decisions theory, although he's much more aggressive.

One quick note: thanks for everyone who has commented, and keep it up. As I've said earlier, I can't respond from Shanghai as I can't see blogs, but I have read them and I do thank you. Off to Singapore tomorrow morning. After a long shower and a big Western meal.


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