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Poker Quoted

Here are my four most favorite quotes on poker and gambling, and my comments on them.

"I must complain the cards are ill shuffled till I have a good hand." From Jonathan Swift, "Thoughts on Various Subjects" (1728)

This first one is commonly observed in poker players who suck at playing poker and blame the dealer for his misfortune. It is safe to say that players like these are not really good poker players at all. To be able to be considered really good in poker, one must be able to play all sorts of cards that fall on his hands, good and bad. If you can only win using good hands, then you have won in luck's mercy. But if you have won because you know how to play your bad hands, you sure are a poker expert.

"How long does it take to learn poker, Dad?" "All your life, son." From David Spanier, "Total Poker" (1977) I will never take this off my mind, and I think everybody should do the same. Some poker players stop learning because they think they already know everything. They forget that poker is always changing, most especially because you play with different players. There's always something new to learn, and people who refuse to see that will stop improving.

"I've lost money so fast in these clubs it's left me reeling. I've read every poker book ever written, but the only way to get better at the game is to go out and play with people who are really good. The problem is, you stand to lose a lot of money doing it." From Matt Damon

I think Matt Damon learned his lessons very well. You see, even if you lose a game, you never come out a total loss. The amount of money he lost in these poker games is nothing compared to the lesson he gained. He has learned that poker books can't possibly teach you everything, that experience, even in poker, is still the best teacher. Of course, it doesn't come without a price.

"He said, "Son, I've made a life out of readin' people's faces, and knowin' what their cards were by the way they held their eyes." From Kenny Rogers, "The Gambler"

This quote tells of something essential in gambling and poker, specifically. Poker is a behavioral game, you have to learn about the betting patterns and body language of your opponents so you could defeat them.