Friday, April 30, 2004

who will be our next American Idol?

believe what you want, but maybe until the top 3, it is a popularity contest. Here are my predictions for the next 5 weeks if I had to guess it blind.

I think the 2 weakest singers in the top 5 so far are Jasmine Trias and Diana DeGarmo. They are both talented with amazing voices, but their voices are not fine tuned just yet. The are only 17 and 16 yrs old. but I don't think they will be the next one to go. i'm going to have to pull the race/sex card and say that Jasmine has an advantage because she's the only asian in the competition. Diana is the only white girl in the competition. And George is the only male in the competition. That leaves out Fantasia and La Toya. Fantasia is a good representation of what people are expecting a winner of American Idol should be, and La Toya is the powerful pure voice that Whitney Houston was known for which we are currently lacking in the music industry. If I had to make a guess La Toya will be the next one to go which will just make it all that much more controversial. Then it will be easy. Either Diana or Jasmine will go, and Fantasia and George will square off. And my prediction will be that Fantasia will win.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

Iron Chef America take 2

So it looks like they've totally redone Iron Chef America for tournament of the masters. I was surprised that so many of the star chefs wolfgang Puck, Bobbly Flay, and Mario Batali were so willing to participate in the kitchen stadium. They made 2 episode of Iron Chef America before. And it was complete garbage. First, the chairman was William Shatner. Eccentric? But WAY over the top. At least we can imagine Kaga to be an eccentric billionaire, whether he is or not. But to deliberately put someone in there who is just pretending (and everyone knows it), was just hard to swallow. Also, what makes the show great is the commentators, but more importantly the people who dub the voices of the commentators. They just completely forgot the element and hired 2 guys who looks like they commentate on football. Another important element was left out, which were the Iron Chefs everyone came to love. They just brought out people no one has ever heard (the iron chefs) to battle more chefs no one has ever heard (the contestants). What was left was a complete joke. Everyone knew, and decided to not produce any episodes. It seems as they fixed many things wrong with the new Iron Chef America Battle of the Masters. They brought familiar faces of the Food Network, and even 2 of the original Iron Chefs (using the word original loosely since Morimoto replaced the Michiba who replaced Nakamura, and Sakai who replaced Ishinabe). Dunno where Chin is, but out of everyone, I think Iron Chef Chin has the best chance of winning against the US chefs. Not to say that my favorite chef Sakai and Morimoto are not talented. But American palates and cuisine is all about abudance, boldness, and bursting with flavor. And that is the ying to the yang of Japanese Cuisine. Japanese cuisine is more about simplicity, delicateness, and subtleness of flavors. In different aspects French cooking is also the direct polar opposite of American cooking as well. Chinese food on the other hand is bold and bursting with flavor. And Chinese cooking is a cuisine everyone can identify with. It is no surprise that Bobby Flay won against Sakai, even though Sakai had never lost a battle that had to do with fish. on top of that, the fact that Sakai went overboard and served trout ice cream, i realized right there that he really could lose. Which did happen. Sakai sure was surprised of the verdict. I was surprised that Batali won against Morimoto, but maybe we should be giving more credit to these chefs on the food network. They really know their stuff, and it isn't all about behind the camera TV magic. Even without the smooth female voice commentator along with Dr. Hattori and the little dude (can't remember his name), at least they brought in one of my favorite people from the Food Network, Alton Brown. I think I can get used to it.

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

that's the dumbest shit i've ever heard

so Elton John publicly states that he finds it "very racist" that the three black females who are the most talented keep getting the bottom 3. there are so many things wrong with that remark. first, i guess he never watched last season when ruben won against clay. second, the week before last week, jennifer hudson was in the top 3. third a man in his position shouldn't be making such offensive remarks without having the facts straight.

it is my theory that fans only vote when they think they need to. when their favorite does well, week after week, then the fans stop voting, thinking that they'll make it through without their help. when their favorite doesn't do well, they vote as much as they can so they can save the contestant. so this theory applies to what happened to jennifer hudson. i always thought she had a great voice, but i saw this coming weeks ago. and this theory applies to the top 3 last week (which included none of the divas).

i got some more hard drive space, just in time too. I have about 800 gigs now....and one day after, my beater hd goes out. luckily it was only 40 gigs, and holding just a few documents i should be able to retrieve. that hd has served me well. sometimes downloading about 15 torrents at once, while running kazaa. it was also on a raid for a year or two which did some damage because that raid card and maxtors didn't work too smoothly. now i have a dilemma. should i get another HD that would be a beater drive, or should i get the best gig for dollar (250 gig for $160) me a total of 1 terabyte+. i need to make my mind up today since my computer at home is pretty much useless...

I drempt that I was vacationing in Vietnam, and I was at a poker house, and I was playing Hold em against these 2 American tourists. But these 2 guys didn't know how to play, and the way they are used to playing is that everyone puts an ante, and then everyone is dealt 5 cards face up. and whoever has the best hand takes the pot. needless to say I was pretty frustrated when I woke up. so it wasn't like hold em at all. More like 7 card stud, except with 5 cards. and all face up. I won one hand with a pair of Aces with a King kicker.

Monday, April 12, 2004

down up down up left right left B A

so we arrived at ocean's around 9:30ish on thursday. it just wasn't our night. no one really got any good cards except one of five of us. everyone quickly went down $100. i enjoyed their kung pow chicken (recommended by all the rounders), and just sat around for a while as some of them hung on for dear life. then i got bored, and eventually sat down at a 1/2 table buying in at $35. i was down to somewhere near $8, and i made it back to $42. so i lost $93 that night. but i really couldn't help it. i played tight. i just wasn't getting any cards. for the entire night, i think i saw 2 suits in the hole maybe twice for the 2 hours i sat there. i don't even think they were suited. rest of the time, i was just playing cards on the bottom of the list....53 suited....46 suited, J5 suited, etc. so i don't think i played a bad game. i just had a terrible run of cards. still made me question whether i just got lucky last week, or if i'm a descent player. according to brunson, it may take months to years to know the real answer to that question before you can expect to go in and make money every time you play.

friday, i took the day off to take care of my car. i got new wipers, batter, a wash, oil change, and suspension tightened. while they were working on my car, me, ray, and stan went to look at drum sets at guitar center. after that, me and stan went to shop for poker chips. we finally found a place that sold good poker chips. unfortunately, they were overpriced. we found king's casino chips for $1.59 per chip (you can buy it for $1.25+ over the internet). so 500 of those would be eight hundred.....nevermind. way over our budget. they also sold KEM cards...but $50 for the pack of there's a 100% markup eh? no thanks.

we played a tournament at stan's house on saturday with 8 people. i got first place....and i think i played pretty well. when the blinds were really high, i did a good job defending them almost every time, and i made some killer reads. every time someone called all in, i made the correct call when i called them. i can't say i wasn't sucked out on some of those pots. so with a little bit of luck, saturday at least stopped me from losing interest in the game.

went to sushi deli 2. we played again on saturday, for fun. we would play then show what we folded, and discuss why we played, and what was going on in our heads. i realized that i wasn't betting when i should, and not reading the board as well as i should. i also put too much value on two pairs. a pretty weak hand against straight, flush, and even trips.

came home, did my taxes, and went to sleep around 4:30 am. the turbo tax software is amazing. I didn't even have to fill out my W2 (because UCSD stores it in their database and can look for it with my ssn), or even my name, ssn (stored in my acct from last year), address, or all that stuff. Here's how I did my taxes this year.

I logged into turbotax with my username and password from last year. I typed in how much in interest i paid in student loans. Then my CSN for state. My credit card # to pay for the program, and everything else, I clicked through. Within 15 minutes I was done.

I played on partypoker on sunday night for play money. Turned 100k into 6 million. I played again today, and turned 100k into another 6 million. Stan says I should pick on some people at my own skill level. But picking on people who don't know how to play is so fun. :) There are some good ones too who play patiently. I just target them differently.

Thursday, April 8, 2004

bye bye camile

well, we all saw it coming. oh well. she has a great voice for a specific type of genre. hopefully she'll do something with it. american idol is not the type of competition i expect her to win.

i'm finding it really hard to make it to the gym this week. its a combination of things. last week was strategic deconditiong week. so my metabolism has gone down. i kinda got used to just going home and crashing even though i only did it for a week. also, i'm eating food during lunch sometimes that is making me feel like i have to take a nap after lunch. i wish my mind set could be like it was before. before, i couldn't wait to get to the gym on a daily basis to be just one day closer to achieving my goals. maybe if i see some results i wouldn't be saying this. luckily i haven't given into going home and sleeping, and skipping a day at the gym. hopefully this is just temporary for this week, and by next week, it'll seem a lot easier. i'm also going to change up my strategic deconditioning weeks. maybe i'll still make it to the gym that week, but stretch and do just a little bit of mild cardio. this way, the week after won't seem like i'm committing myself to the gym for the first time.

thursday is finally here. i've been having poker widthdrawls ever since sunday. people played for fun on sunday, but i was up in LA so i couldn't make it. ever since, i've been itching to play some poker. every day at work, i dream about driving up to ocean's 11 after work and playing some texas hold em. but its not something i would be proud to do. and if i do lose, i'll really regret it. not that i regret losing money on poker. but i would regret if i ended up sneaking off to poker and losing. doing something i shouldn't be doing instead of patiently waiting. i would tell myself "i told you so" and i would hate that.

i'm still wondering if i am a good poker player, or just an average player who's been playing with luck on my side. because when i was at the 2/4 table, it seemed like people there all looked like they knew what they were doing. except there were only one or two people other than me with more chips than they started with.

here is what i'm hoping to accomplish. i have been studying the list of playble hands, and i got it down:

raise and reraise in any position:


call early, raise middle and late position:


call middle and late position

A8s-A2s,K9s-K7s,Q9s-Q8s,J9s-J8s,T9s-T8s,98s,87s, 77,66,55,44,33,22,AJ,AT,KJ,KT,QJ,QT,JT

call late position early

K6s-K2s,Q7s-Q2s,J7s-J5s,T7s-T6s,A9,K9,Q9,J9,T9, 97s,96s,86s,85s,76s,75s,65s,64s,54s,53s,43s

i'll play my starting hands by the book (playing tight). if i do well, i might loosen up just a tad. but i realize that there could be some nights where i can get a good hand every turn, and get beat every single hand. that's just part of poker. on those nights, i'm very likely to go on tilt. stan was able to escape by only losing $2 when it was his bad night, so hopefully, by following his example, i can learn to do that. i also should realize that winning $159 like last time on a 2/4 table is no small feat. it would be foolish to aim so high and start playing loose when i get blinded by how much money i might be able to win. so i'll try to mentally prepare myself to just go there and play my game. i'm not really gonna think about how much money i can lose or win. win or lose, i'll still be happy to know that i played all my hands correctly. .

maybe i'll move up to the 3/6 table if people are playing tight like last time on the 2/4 table. it seems like people are too eager to jump into the bigger tables without getting good on the scrub tables (1/2 and 2/4). i think me and stan are definitely ready for 3/6. i can't say the same for a lot of the people actually sitting on the 3/6 table.

Thursday, April 1, 2004

chris tucker, you are fantasic on american idol.

01/08/04 - casey's house - game 1 - down $10, ray wins

01/08/04 - casey's house - game 2 - down $5, steve wins

01/16/04 - casey's house - down $10 - ray wins

01/16/04 - casey's house - down $5 - peter wins

01/18/04 - big bear lodge - up $10, stan wins

01/23/04 - stan's place - down $10, stan wins

01/30/04 - stan's place - game 1 - down $10 - 12 people poker

01/30/04 - stan's place - game 2 - up $20

02/06/04 - stan's place - down $10, dave plays, game ends 3am

02/13/04 - martin's friend's place in dt lj - up $20, stan wins

02/15/04 - travis' condo - down $40 (cash NL poker)

02/16/04 - stan's place - game 1 - up $10 martin wins

02/16/04 - stan's place - game 2 - up $30

02/27/04 - stan's place - up $30

03/04/04 - travis' condo - down $50 (Limit poker)

03/06/04 - stan's place - down $10

03/13/04 - no poker

03/19/04 - stan's place game 1 - down $10, matt wins (bounties)

03/19/04 - stan's place game 2 - down $10, steve wins

03/25/04 - ocean's 11 - up $50

03/27/04 - Ray's house - up $30 (counting 5 i put in for ray)

03/30/04 - ocean's 11 - up $159