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It's 3:33; Do You Know Where Your Chips Are?

I play in a home game on Wednesdays from time to time. It's a fun game with low stakes and a group of guys who play the game purely for the fun of it. I love to stop by this game and reconnect with what makes the game of poker so terrific. It truly brings me back to the basics of what attracted me to poker in the first place. The banter, the camaraderie, outplaying another player and showing it, getting outplayed and learning from it…everything.

For some reason, when I play the action amps up and the host struggles with running out of chips the players rebuy so often. Today is no exception and, three hours into the game, the chips are gone and players are rebuying from each other. The players at this game aren't casino veterans so explaining some of the rules abided by at casinos can be confusing. Such as you can't 'go south' and take money off the table. Or what happens when someone (okay, it was me) goes all in out of turn due to being on a heater and the action in front doesn't have to match my bet as it's not a legal bet until it's my turn to act.

Today I was feeling it, so when I looked down at pocket 3s under the gun I looked up at the clock and made note of the time…3:31. I raised the one chip blind to seven. A guy across from me who is a poker veteran reraised me to 20 chips. By the time it came around to me, everyone else folded and I rechecked the clock…3:32. I told my heads-up adversary, "It's 3:32. At 3:33, I'll take all your chips". He accepted this challenge as I called his preflop reraise. The flop was 2/3/5 rainbow. I checked my set to what I was sure was his overpair. He bet 40 chips. I went all in for 200. He looked up at the clock and waited a moment. "It's 3:34, I guess you won't be getting all my chips. I call." And he proudly showed his QQ. I told him, "Nope, it's still 3 3 3" as I showed my set of 3s. My hand held up and I had a nice double up as the host looked nervously at his rapidly depleting chip supply.

Take time to Tilt,

John

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