The Frugal Poker Player Reduces Costs

The Frugal Poker Player: 6 Tricks to Reduce Costs while Playing Poker

Poker is a lot of fun (thus our grand plan to spend a year traveling the country playing poker). Poker can also be very expensive. Most players understand the importance of paying attention to your poker budget or bankroll to ensure that they are playing in games they can afford. However, many players overlook the importance of accounting for all of the other spending that goes along with playing poker. In order to maximize your poker opportunities, you need to reduce costs associated with playing, and travelling to play, poker. This is an area that you can not ignore. If you play your way to break even (or better) poker and do not account for these costs, you will quickly find yourself in the red.

So how do you reduce costs when playing poker? Here are 6 tricks to help you out:

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Headphones at the Poker Table

Throwdown Thursday: Headphones at the Poker Table

Headphones have become ubiquitous in our culture. Take a subway, and half the riders are plugged in. Walk down a city street, and cords are flapping in the breeze. Even attend a high school music performance, and you’ll see younger sibs with headphones firmly implanted in ears. (Although that final choice may reveal precocious wisdom). Headphone use at the poker table has become part of an archetype of a specific kind of player. We’ll label this breed “poker headphones”. Most, but not all poker headphones players are under 30 and wear them throughout their sessions along with sunglasses and a hoodie or ballcap.

Can these players not be alone with their thoughts? Must they desperately block out the comments of other players in order to think? Do poker headphones help or hurt focus? Debates have raged about the etiquette of headphones at the poker table and whether their use is beneficial. Norman Chad, the great poker commentator and wit, comes down firmly against poker headphones, throwing them into the same category as hoodies and sunglasses. However, many top pros like Phil Hellmuth and Phil Ivey, frequently wear headphones at the poker table.

In today’s Throwdown, we take on the poker headphones phenomenon. We have played tournaments both with and without headphones. Which is better?

Paul: I generally like poker players, but sometimes hate what comes out of people’s mouths. Short friendly interchanges allow me to think the best of everyone. Too much exposure to others’ insights makes me want to take up crocheting. Enjoying my poker session is as important to me as winning. Listening to Elvis Costello assures that I will enjoy my day, however the game plays out. Listening to a poker genius telling everyone else how they are misplaying hands assures I won’t.

Heather: Ah, the “I hate humanity” argument. Fair enough. However, I find that I get a lot of information from listening to others at the table. Not only through direct communications, but also from side banter with the dealer and with each other. I lose those insights about other players’ habits and their games if I am tuning out to the music of Hamilton.

 

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North Beach Fish Camp in Neptune Beach

The Best Places to Eat in Neptune Beach

Last month was the one year anniversary of our New Orleans dream wedding. As we recently shared, we honored the event with a romantic weekend trip to sunny Atlantic Beach Florida. Atlantic Beach is just steps away from Neptune Beach. While researching our trip, a quick visit to Yelp revealed there were a wide variety of excellent restaurants in Neptune Beach. The number of 4+ star restaurants seemed rare for a beach location. However, the rave reviews fortunately proved correct.

Our Favorite Neptune Beach Restaurants

Poe’s Tavern

On the first day of our stay, we had lunch at Poe’s Tavern. Poe’s is named, of course, after Edgar Allan Poe, who spent some time in the area. The restaurant is large and funky, with the writer’s memorabilia displayed throughout. Do not miss the retro bathroom, where you can listen to one of Poe’s stories while you freshen up. We visited on a beautiful day and chose to sit outside beside a lovely garden. At night, there are fairy lights on the trees, and I imagine the experience is quite magical.

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Foxwoods Poker Room Review

Foxwoods Poker Room Review

NOTE: This review was updated in September of 2019 to reflect substantial changes in poker room location, cash room activity, and tournament offerings.

The Foxwoods poker room was our first regular live poker venue (outside free pub poker). Thus it holds a special place in our own poker journey. Like many novice players, our experience started with “Wow, we’re doing really well! This is easier than we thought!” Which of course transformed into “Guess we’re not as good as we thought” in due time. Nonetheless, we have spent many fun evenings at Foxwoods through the years. When Foxwoods announced that it had moved its cash room from the dark lower level to a brand new room on the casino’s main level, we were intrigued. We ventured down to Southeastern Connecticut to check it out and update our review.

Setting and Non-Poker Amenities

The approach to the Foxwoods complex elicits a common reaction: “There is no way there is a large casino in the middle of these sparsely populated woods.” Then the vast structure appears like a mirage in the distance. Foxwoods’ long-term, and much-maligned, ad campaign “The Wonder of it All” actually does have some merit.

Built on Mashantucket Pequot tribal grounds, Foxwoods started in 1986 as a bingo hall. In the early 1990s, it added table games and slots and evolved into a full-blown casino. The poker room followed in 1995. The Grand Pequot Tower hotel opened in 1997 and the luxurious MGM Grand (now Fox Tower) followed in 2008. Various casino rooms surround and link the hotels along with numerous restaurants, and a large concert venue. The inevitable outlet mall (an 85-store Tanger Outlet) joined the complex in 2015.

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Best Side Hustles for Making Extra Money on the Side

Best Side Hustles: Our Secret to Micro-Hustle Profits

Disclosure: Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. However, we only include affiliate links for products and services that we use and love. For more information, see our Disclosure page.

We spend a lot of time looking for the best side hustles to help us move toward our grand plan to travel the country for a year. We have also put a lot of energy into thinking about how we will save for the trip. Our overarching plan is something of a three-legged stool.

The first leg would be our ongoing income stream. We are very fortunate that our main hustle is location independent. We currently both work from home as data scientists and could do so as easily from Malibu as from Massachusetts. While we hope to reduce our data analytic hours during our journey, they will remain a significant source of income. We also have a primary side hustle writing and working for a poker training site that we hope to continue as we travel.

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