Look Left

“When you look to the right, you look into the past. To see your future, look left.” − me

Among my recurring targets as a poker player is to look left as the action gets to me, so that I might get a feel for my opponents’ intentions.

Is he going to fold? Is he going to raise? He looks disinterested, which could mean he is folding, or it could be an act and actually he is raising, but this time it looks legit. I think he is folding. In that case, I will…

Usually, when I look left, I gain nothing. And sometimes I am rewarded with money, when what I see causes me to play better than I would have, had I not looked. I say “play better” because I’m not talking about merely making better betting decisions. It’s also about subtle, important, instant upgrades to my tempo and movements, like the way any athlete reacts. If the situation demands that I raise no matter what I see on my left, then I will raise. But the way I raise might change.

After looking left hundreds of thousands of times, the most important thing I’ve learned is that even after all these years and all this effort, I still don’t look left often enough. And if I’m right in my belief that all poker players can play better by looking left more often, then that means I have some work to do on my game that I know will make me money. I like that.

I know I’m on solid ground with all this looking left business. I know so because of what I saw in England, where they’ve had legal poker rooms dating back to the 20th century. Yes, there is a whole generation of knowledgeable poker Brits over there, and apparently some of them work for the Department of Transport, in the signage division. For if you walk the streets of London, and you actually look at the streets of London, you’ll see this everywhere:

look-left1

 

 

(In other news, I’m selling both my books for the price of one of my books at my new web-store. Personal inscriptions available upon request.)

 

11 Comments

  • Short-Stacked Shamus Posted January 24, 2012 9:09 am

    I remember visiting London and being constantly encouraged to mind the gap concept.

  • Andy Posted January 25, 2012 6:31 am

    I can not stop lol.Very true.Very funny.
    “After looking left hundreds of thousands of times, the most important thing I’ve learned is that even after all these years and all this effort, I still don’t look left often enough.”
    I stayed in London more that 7 months-playing some poker too.I had a 3 occasions where a car almost hit me.
    After 7 months the signs were still confusing me -not helping.I did not trust them.-(mind gap?)
    As a precaution I changed my habit and I started look to left and right before crossing.
    I wrote I changed my habit but it was clearly automatic modification.
    The experience helped me to realized how I am ignorant of my automatic moves and behaviors.
    I saw parallel similarities to internet poker experience.
    I realized how internet poker is habitual space where mouse clicks are result of a unconscious “blink” automatic decision
    rather than conscious thought.

  • Bert Posted January 25, 2012 11:32 am

    I don’t get it. They drive on the left, so when you step off the pavement the cars will come from the right. So why look to the left?

  • Tommy Angelo Posted January 25, 2012 12:10 pm

    “I don’t get it. They drive on the left, so when you step off the pavement the cars will come from the right. So why look to the left?”

    This picture helps I think:

    http://tommyangelo.com/images/look-left2.jpg

    If you were approaching from the other side of the car, you would be instructed to “look right” by the text on the street.

  • Paul B Posted January 25, 2012 1:21 pm

    So….how far left do you look? Next position? Next plus one?

  • Tommy Angelo Posted January 25, 2012 2:06 pm

    “So….how far left do you look? Next position? Next plus one?”

    From the cutoff, mainly I just look at the button, although glancing at the blinds is good too! From the hijack, I look at cutoff and button. From button, both blinds. From small blind, I look at the big blind.

  • littleenglander Posted January 25, 2012 4:50 pm

    Bert, this must be a one-way traffic system like most of central London. You are quite right usually it tells you to look right.

    Of course they only write on the road when the traffic is coming from the direction you wouldn’t expect, ie a one-way street or single lane.

  • Andy Posted January 26, 2012 2:59 am
  • Andy Posted January 26, 2012 3:35 am

    When you look to the right, you look into the past. To see your future, look left.==The assumption of time is also the assumption of a location.

  • Tony Posted January 28, 2012 4:18 am

    I tried this Friday night but all I ever saw was the wall to the left of my workstation.

  • Ultimate Poker Pro Chips Posted February 17, 2012 11:08 am

    I still think it’s safer to look both ways lol

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