Saturday, February 07, 2009

Which Bluff Came First - Absolute Beginners

An interesting situation came up in the Plan3t office yesterday. As regular readers will know we recently took on two very bright employees with language skills to help with aggressive expansion plans into Central / Eastern Europe and Russia.

Since it was Friday, and neither of the ladies had played poker before we broke out for a quick 'beginners lesson', kind of an introduction to how to play no-limit Texas Holdem starting from zero...

It was both fun and a challenge...

Where do you start? With the poker hand rankings? With the starting hand selection? With the mechanics of who acts when? Explaining what the 'blinds' are and how you can make people fold? Actually it is not as easy as it sounds... most of what you will find on the web assumes you at can at least follow a hand - and this was speaking with people who had never played a hand in their lives of any form of the game.

So, the Titan 1c / 2c blind game was our venue and I explained how the winning hand was constructed and how to bet / fold etc. The ladies then took turns and managed (by luck more than judgement) to turn our initial $2 buy-in into a hefty $3.01c before we finished.

An interesting - and thought provoking - situation occoured, we had played q8 off from early position (hehe) and missed the flop against a single caller. I reccommended a bluff bet on the flop representing something or other... and it worked, fine. One of the ladies then asked - What does it mean to bluff? Is a bluff in poker the same as a bluff in real-life?

Of course the answer is yes, the meaning is indeed the same.

What I thought was that this term actually came from poker into the world - rather than the other way around. It was interesting to see that poker terminology has become so pervasive in society that someone who knows nothing at all about the game can use it without realising its origin. This lady is extremely intelligent BTW, it is not that something was 'missed' here - more a refreshing perspective of someone whose life had not (yet!) been touched by poker.

Plenty of other terms out there too!

GL at the tables, Mark


AllanDuke said...

Have you ever seen Derren Brown teach the old British lady how to play poker? Woman had never played poker in her life, and he entered her into a $2k 6-handed live SNG.

Poker Boy said...

another interesting question to ponder: is a bluff in real life poker the same as a bluff in virtual poker?

Mark said...

Not seen it no... will have to have a look when I get a minute... $2k!

Cheers, Mark