The guys have decided, for the time being at least, to change the format of our weekly game. Instead of a cash game, they want to have a series of single table tournaments for $20 each. They figure we can do 3 a week, that way no one can lose more than $60 and it will attract more people. The reasoning is astonishingly stupid. They say the game has “gotten out of hand” because there are 2 or 3 players who come to the game with hundreds of dollars and they bet like crazy, so you can lose too much money. They say that by doing a tournament format, everyone starts the same so it’s more fair. Just to give you an idea how this conversation went:
Jeff: There’s too much money on the table, it’s gotten out of hand.
Me: That’s more money to be won.
Jeff: But Jan and Scott come with hundreds of dollars and they’ll keep betting like crazy and you can’t chase them out. They bet on nothing.
Me: Exactly. They bring a lot of money and they bet stupidly. So you beat them and take their money.
Jeff: but if you only buy in for $40 or $50, you can lose it and be out fast
Me: Yep. That’s true any week. The only difference here is that your chances of winning are increased because you have bad players with deep pockets at the table.
Jeff: But people are gonna stop coming because they risk losing so much money. If they knew they could only lose a certain amount, they’d be more likely to play.
Me: They risk losing as much money as they choose to put into the game. They have total control over how much they lose. Since we started playing this weekly game, I’ve lost 3 times. Twice I bought in for $40, lost it, and quit playing for the night. Once I bought in for $40, lost it, bought in for another $50 and lost that too. Every single other week, I’ve bought in for $40 or $50 and ended up winning money.
Jeff: That’s the other thing, you win money but you don’t bring it back into the game the next week. That’s not fair, it doesn’t give everyone else a chance to win their money back.
Me: (trying to stifle a laugh) Are you kidding me? You have a chance to win my money every single week, Jeff.
Jeff: But not the money I lost to you the week before.
Me: (no longer bothering to stifle the guffaw) That’s not my problem. I win, I do what I want with the money I win. I don’t have any moral obligation to let you try and win it back.
Jeff: I think you do, it’s a friendly game. You sit there every week and don’t drink, so you win our money but we don’t get a chance to win it back.
Me: (now laughing loudly) So don’t get drunk. You are an adult, capable of making choices, aren’t you?
Jeff: It’s supposed to be a friendly game. I’m there to have fun.
Me: It IS a friendly game. We’re all friends and we all have fun. While we’re having fun we’re also gambling and that means we each risk losing money every week. You have as much of a chance to win or lose as I do, every single week. I don’t drink and I still have fun. If you can’t have fun without getting drunk and betting badly, that’s not my problem.
And on and on like that. The hilarious thing about it is that Jeff is one of the guys who brings a lot of money and loses his ass every week. And if you asked the other two players like that, one of whom doesn’t drink but is just an aggressive player, they’d say they like it the way it is. It’s stupid. But oh well, I can beat them at a tournament as easily as I can in a live game, perhaps easier since most of them have never played tournaments. Full report tomorrow.