Poker Primer from “Adequate Man”

I consider myself a very good video poker player.  I’ve studied Jacks or Better, Bonus Poker, and Double Double Bonus video poker.  When I say studied, I mean practiced, trained, and worked towards AP status. But I know very well that poker and video poker are two different beasts.

Yes, I have played home games, penny-ante kind of stuff, but not with serious, experienced poker faces across the table.

So, this October, I’m about to take the plunge into the casino poker room. Cousin Vito, on his weekly podcast, has been talking about the FARGO POKER Event at Mohegan Sun, October 12 – 15th.  I’ve decided to join the event, meet the friendly people of FARGO poker, and report on it here. Click above to read all about it.

I looked at this great website I know of, There, I found a great Poker primer.  Kyle Wagner from the site ADEQUATE MAN has a great Beginner’s post on how to start playing poker called “How To Survive At The Poker Table.”

Below is just a sample, (minus the profanity.) The pictures were added by “moi.”

“How To Survive At The Poker Table.”

One of my favorite all-time movies – “the Sting”
Poker used to be cool. From Wild Bill Hickok getting shot up over aces and eights to Paul Newman and Robert Shaw eyeing each other in The Sting, it has always held a place in American culture as the game you’d find grown men playing in the smoke-filled back rooms. Here’s all you need to look like you know what you’re doing, not (mess) up the game, and hopefully not get taken for all you’re worth.

That said: I do mean hopefully. This article can’t teach you how to play poker well. There’s plenty enough writing about poker out there, and plenty enough guides on the matter, both basic and advanced. We’ll take you through some basic table etiquette, parlance, and rudimentary concepts for playing soundly. But remember: We’re only here to make you Good Enough. We aren’t even trying to keep you out of the “If you can’t spot the sucker in the first 20 minutes …” pile, since an experienced player will get a sense of where everyone stands easily enough. We’re more aiming for “Just make sure you’re second-slowest when you’re escaping the bear” territory.

Foxwoods Poker Room
Largest Poker Room in N.E. at Foxwoods

Foxwoods Poker Room Largest Poker Room in N.E. at Foxwoods
Most of this advice boils down to “keep….. to yourself”—this is good general practice regardless of venue. So, here’s how to fit in well enough at a table that you won’t get on everyone’s nerves, and also how to keep your head far enough above water that you can afford to come back.


You’re shooting for two things here: You want to avoid slowing the game down, and you want to avoid being the annoying simp everyone has to correct. We’ll start with pace-of-play stuff.

1. Know when it’s your turn.

2. Don’t bet or fold out of turn.

3. Know what kind of bet you can make, and what kind you can’t.

4. Don’t stack your chips like an idiot, but stack your chips. images

5. Don’t splash the pot (also: Don’t say, “Don’t splash the pot”). When you bet, don’t just toss your chips in the middle of the table; place them in front of you, preferably in somewhat organized stacks. This lets the rest of the table see what you’ve bet, and keeps it separate from the pot.

6. Leftovers.

  • Don’t buy in for a ridiculously small amount.
  • Know the difference between “bet” and “raise.”
  • Leave your cards on the table.
  • Don’t look at other players’ cards. .
  • Don’t slow-roll. Slow-rolling is a troll move in games that have hole cards, where at the end of a hand, you only turn over one of your two cards. By the rules, you’ve got to turn both over eventually anyway.
  • Don’t take money off the table.
  • Tip the dealer.
  • Don’t String Bet.

HOW TO ACTUALLY PLAY…….Sorry, to get the explanations of the above great suggestions as well as the rest of Kyle’s post, click on his Title above. You won’t regret it.