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Thread: Wolverine: Play all spread

  1. #31
    Wolverine
    Guest

    Wolverine: Concepts

    Don, bfb, and Parker,
    Sorry to make it so difficult. I am truly trying to "get it." Being a positive expectation game makes it a different animal than what I was expecting (a 50-50 game), since sessions seem to win or lose, without regard to how + or - a deck was. Anyway... I digress. I never thought of the game that way.

    Don, you stated there are a 100 reasons to end a session of playing. That is what I have been driving at the whole time, but we got sidetracked when my mathematical incompetence came up.

    If the stated goal is to play as much as possible, why quit playing? We have uncovered some of those reasons: If you can't play there again due to getting barred for counting, you don't want to file the $10,000 paperwork, you get tired, you really do need to use the facilities, you need to eat, it is time to leave, the family is waiting for you. What are others besides a negative count (see below)?

    My statement to kick this whole thing off was rather simple in my (simple) mind: If you cut winning sessions short for these stated (good?)reasons, are you cutting off some of your expected win? And if you are limiting the upside of a winning session, should you be concerned with cutting your losses?

    I related it to stock picking where the expected outcome over the long haul is decidedly positive as well. However, people lose money in the market all the time, even over the long haul because they don't have buy and sell rules, or use poor buy and sell rules (many are related to human emotions such as greed and fear). Since we make "buy and sell" rules by deciding when to start to play blackjack and when to quit, they seemed quite parallel to me.

    That is what this entire line of questioning has been about, rules to stop a session of blackjack with a PLAY ALL approach. I realize that I don't have the advantage with an even or negative count. I am willing to make waiting wagers (table minimums) until the count goes positive. It is my hope that placing larger wagers when I have the advantage will overcome the smaller, disadvantaged wagers. (e.g., if I win an 8 unit wager, I would have to lose 8 single unit wagers as waiting bets, albeit eating into my expected profits while I wait for the next advantageous opportunity.) I fully realize that playing with only positive counts is a better way to play and increase the likelihood of leaving a winner over the long haul. Perhaps someday I will have the oppotunity to pursue this method of playing.

    As a recreational advantage player, I am still sorting through a couple of (many?!?) hangups and misconceptions. The discussions, lessons, and site are helping, thank you.

    I will go about my homework that has been assigned and ask questions as they come up in the future. I am truly sorry for being such a blockheaded, ignorant poster.

  2. #32
    Parker
    Guest

    Parker: Re: Concepts

    > If the stated goal is to play as much as
    > possible, why quit playing? We have
    > uncovered some of those reasons: If you
    > can't play there again due to getting barred
    > for counting, you don't want to file the
    > $10,000 paperwork, you get tired, you really
    > do need to use the facilities, you need to
    > eat, it is time to leave, the family is
    > waiting for you. What are others besides a
    > negative count (see below)?

    Note that most of the reasons for ending a session (you're tired, hungry, getting heat, reached an arbitrary time limit) are applicable regardless of whether you happen to be having a winning or losing session. Another reason would be because playing conditions have deteriorated - that table becomes too crowded, a new dealer is giving inferior penetration, etc. Again, it would make no difference if you happened to be winning or losing at the time.

    > My statement to kick this whole thing off
    > was rather simple in my (simple) mind: If
    > you cut winning sessions short for these
    > stated (good?)reasons, are you cutting off
    > some of your expected win? And if you are
    > limiting the upside of a winning session,
    > should you be concerned with cutting your
    > losses?

    Again, what "expected" win? If we quit during a winning session, we have no way of knowing if we would have continued to win. If we quit during a losing session, we have no way of knowing if we would have continued to lose, or turned it into a winning session.

    All we know is when we are playing, we have a positive expectation. When we are not playing, our expectation is 0.

    If there were an ideal casino somewhere where heat was nonexistant and conditions were always uniformly good, our goal would be to spend every waking hour at the table.

    > I related it to stock picking where the
    > expected outcome over the long haul is
    > decidedly positive as well. However, people
    > lose money in the market all the time, even
    > over the long haul because they don't have
    > buy and sell rules, or use poor buy and sell
    > rules (many are related to human emotions
    > such as greed and fear). Since we make
    > "buy and sell" rules by deciding
    > when to start to play blackjack and when to
    > quit, they seemed quite parallel to me.

    I think you should stop trying to equate blackjack to stock trading.

    > That is what this entire line of questioning
    > has been about, rules to stop a session of
    > blackjack with a PLAY ALL approach. I
    > realize that I don't have the advantage with
    > an even or negative count. I am willing to
    > make waiting wagers (table minimums) until
    > the count goes positive. It is my hope that
    > placing larger wagers when I have the
    > advantage will overcome the smaller,
    > disadvantaged wagers. (e.g., if I win an 8
    > unit wager, I would have to lose 8 single
    > unit wagers as waiting bets, albeit eating
    > into my expected profits while I wait for
    > the next advantageous opportunity.) I fully
    > realize that playing with only positive
    > counts is a better way to play and increase
    > the likelihood of leaving a winner over the
    > long haul. Perhaps someday I will have the
    > oppotunity to pursue this method of playing.

    You want a rule, here it is: Never leave a positive shoe.

    Satisfied? :-)

    > As a recreational advantage player, I am
    > still sorting through a couple of (many?!?)
    > hangups and misconceptions. The discussions,
    > lessons, and site are helping, thank you.

    > I will go about my homework that has been
    > assigned and ask questions as they come up
    > in the future. I am truly sorry for being
    > such a blockheaded, ignorant poster.

    No need to apologize, providing that you're really here to learn something.

  3. #33
    Wolverine
    Guest

    Wolverine: Re: Concepts

    > Again, what "expected" win? If we
    > quit during a winning session, we have no
    > way of knowing if we would have continued to
    > win. If we quit during a losing session, we
    > have no way of knowing if we would have
    > continued to lose, or turned it into a
    > winning session.

    If there is an EV for a period of time (an hour) or decent number of hands (again, can be equated roughly back to time) and you are (signifcantly?) ahead of expectations for that hour or number of hands. I'm not talking being up the first 5 minutes of a playing session and packing up shop and walking away "because I am up." You have repeatedly stated that it makes no difference unless I plan to never play again. If I have lost my buy in stake (roughly 10% of my bankroll), I would like to leave and try my luck at the next table/casino. You are right that it makes no mathematical difference, but MAYBE it makes an emotional one. That was another one of my questions regarding stopping a session that was dismissed.

    I guess I approach each session as my last so I try to make sure I get up from the table even or a winner (if I was able to because I was up). If I buy in for 30 or 40 units, and I am up 10 units at some point, I try to make it a point to leave no worse than even. If I get up 20 or 30 units, I make sure I walk away with a solid 10 units of bank. The only time I have EVER broken this rule is when there was a very positive situation (+4 TC or better) and EVERY TIME I lived to regret that decision as I wound up walking away a loser from where I should have "left the table" under my previously stated quitting rules. Bad luck. But, it has happened enough that after almost 15 years of playing, and the last few using those "stopping a winner" rules, I am trying to find some prescription to help change these disappointing "continuation" outcomes. Your answer to me is going to be "that's the way the cookie crumbles. Nobody can predict what is going to happen in the short run. You had a positive situation, you need to play it."

    I will no longer relate blackjack to investing on this board. We obviously look at things very differently.

    As I said before, I'm off to do my homework. I'm done asking this question here. It is obvious that *my* quest is only getting people upset and tempers to flare. I will return to the woodwork to avoid further tarnishing my reputation here. Thank you for your efforts on my behalf. Adios.

  4. #34
    Parker
    Guest

    Parker: Re: Concepts

    > If there is an EV for a period of time (an
    > hour) or decent number of hands (again, can
    > be equated roughly back to time) and you are
    > (signifcantly?) ahead of expectations for
    > that hour or number of hands. I'm not
    > talking being up the first 5 minutes of a
    > playing session and packing up shop and
    > walking away "because I am up."
    > You have repeatedly stated that it makes no
    > difference unless I plan to never play
    > again. If I have lost my buy in stake
    > (roughly 10% of my bankroll), I would like
    > to leave and try my luck at the next
    > table/casino. You are right that it makes no
    > mathematical difference, but MAYBE it makes
    > an emotional one. That was another one of my
    > questions regarding stopping a session that
    > was dismissed.

    That's an entirely different issue. The goal is to play like a machine, but we are human, with human emotions, and sometimes that is difficult, especially for non-professional players. It is even possible that getting pounded may have an effect on your play -- after losing a series of max bets, you become "gunshy," reluctant to push out that big bet when the count calls for it. If this happens, you are giving up your edge, so it is definitely time for a break.

    The downside is that, as previously mentioned, you have no EV once you stop playing. In addition, you may be walking away from a game with exceptional conditions and moving on to an inferior one.

    As long as you understand that there is no mathematically valid reason to walk away from a good game, go for it.

    > I guess I approach each session as my last
    > so I try to make sure I get up from the
    > table even or a winner (if I was able to
    > because I was up). If I buy in for 30 or 40
    > units, and I am up 10 units at some point, I
    > try to make it a point to leave no worse
    > than even. If I get up 20 or 30 units, I
    > make sure I walk away with a solid 10 units
    > of bank. The only time I have EVER broken
    > this rule is when there was a very positive
    > situation (+4 TC or better) and EVERY TIME I
    > lived to regret that decision as I wound up
    > walking away a loser from where I should
    > have "left the table" under my
    > previously stated quitting rules. Bad luck.
    > But, it has happened enough that after
    > almost 15 years of playing, and the last few
    > using those "stopping a winner"
    > rules, I am trying to find some prescription
    > to help change these disappointing
    > "continuation" outcomes. Your
    > answer to me is going to be "that's the
    > way the cookie crumbles. Nobody can predict
    > what is going to happen in the short run.
    > You had a positive situation, you need to
    > play it."

    You're starting to catch on. :-)

    The problem is that you will drive yourself crazy trying to micromanage your session results in this manner. You will waste energy needlessly kicking yourself for not "quitting while you were ahead," you will miss out on many advantageous opportunities because you prematurely ended a session, and your long-term EV will be less because you will end up playing fewer hours.

    Believe it or not, I understand where you're coming from because I used to think that way myself, when I first started playing. Once I accepted the math, and started thinking in terms of EV rather than session results, blackjack became a lot more fun and less stressful.

    > I will no longer relate blackjack to
    > investing on this board. We obviously look
    > at things very differently.

    It's not a question of viewpoint. You either understand and accept the math or you don't. Either way, the math remains the same.

    You are free to believe that the earth is flat if you so choose, but the earth will continue to be round.

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