Quads are in the Air

I spent last weekend in S. Florida, enjoying the poker scene, warm weather, and the excellent company of a travel buddy. For purposes of this blog, I’ll call him “Rob.”

Not wanting to waste any time, I whipped a deck of cards out of my backpack shortly after takeoff (my first time flying on Spirit Airlines – potentially the subject of another blog post). Let’s get our brains going, I suggested. We’ll deal some hands on the tray tables, and discuss how we might play them if this were a real game.

Sandwiched in a center seat, Rob had little choice. We started with some pot limit Omaha. A pair of nines appeared on the first flop, and Rob immediately tray-tabled his cards, showing the other two nines. One hand. Quads.

Less than 15 minutes later, in another PLO hand (still heads-up, on an airplane, using the tray tables on row 25), the board includes three jacks. Rob reveals his hand, which includes the 4th jack, saying he’s “pretty sure” he would bet if this were a real poker hand. Fifteen minutes… quads twice.

We switched to Badugi for awhile but Rob wasn’t into it, so we switched again, this time to Texas Hold’em. Most or all of our trip will be spent playing hold’em, so we should warm up a bit. This time, we pretended to bet and tried to treat it semi-seriously. Somewhere over Central Florida, I went all-in on the turn with my imaginary chips, and Rob snap called. A deuce on the river paired the board and Rob flipped over… pocket deuces. Quads three times!

Boy was he pissed! No real money to win and thanks to me (!), his chances of winning a high hand jackpot ($500-1,000 every 1/2 hour at the Hard Rock, depending on the time of day) are surely fucked. Regression to the mean and all that.

Actually, however, the practice apparently paid off. Late Saturday night, Rob flopped a set of 7’s and turned quads. Again. Quads x 4. And they held up to win a high hand jackpot. No doubt he explained to anyone willing to listen how he “practiced” getting quads on the flight down to Florida.

As for me… I only saw quads from the wrong end, as when my pocket kings lost a large pot to QQQQx. Should not have called the river bet, because #TheyAlwaysHaveIt. If regression to the mean is a real thing, my turn should be soon.

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