Meet Your Teacher

My name is Frank…

… and my poker nickname says it all…

They call me “The Folder”.

I’m a serious recreational poker player who has played Texas Hold ’em on and off for over fifteen years.

But I have a confession to make: For the first twelve of those years, my game seemed to come and go with the wind. No matter how many books I read, no matter how many internet forums I devoured, and no matter whose advice I followed… I lost money.

Over the course of hundreds of hours playing live, despite knowing quite a bit about the game, I estimate that it cost me about $15 per hour “enjoying” a love-hate (mostly hate) relationship with a pastime that was 10% fun and 90% aggravation.

Every winning session made me believe that I finally had it all figured out. But every losing session (which, by the way, was most of the time) left me baffled and frustrated beyond words.

Every time I lost, the same three persistent doubts crept into my psyche…

  1. Is low stakes limit holdem, no matter how well-played, really unbeatable given the rake, jackpot drop, and tokes?
  2. Was I playing in a dirty game?
  3. Was the universe telling me to find something more honorable and productive to do with my time?

Over those dozen years, I enjoyed my fair share of winning streaks… but none of them lasted very long. I lost track of how many times I left the poker room empty-handed, having gone all-in with my dwindling stack in the wee hours, swearing never to step foot in a casino again.

But, no matter how many times my “bad luck” caused me to walk away from the game, something kept me coming back for more… again and again.

My curiosity, stubbornness, and pride simply could not ignore the most nagging question of all: How could I possibly be losing to a table full of donkeys who don’t understand basic arithmetic?

Fast forward to redemption day… when the truth hit me in a blinding and humbling flash: If the game is clean… and if low stakes limit holdem really is beatable… and if the universe is not trying to save me from myself, there was only one obvious conclusion: There had to be something I still did not understand about the game.

In other more pointed words, I was forced to admit that I, too, was one of the donkeys!

To make a long story short, that sobering realization sent me back to the hold ’em drawing board and revolutionized my relationship with the game.

I have been a winning player ever since.

Learn more… The First Lesson


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