The smallest game in the room, the entry point for poker, is often the most deadly, dull, and uninviting. It has the highest proportional rake, the least challenging play, the smallest amount of available money, and most lethally, the most boring people.
Tuesday is a slow night in many casinos. I got stuck at three different 1/3 tables during a three hour wait so I could play one hour of 3/5 before the early a.m. exit. At the first 1/3 table, the atmosphere was funereal. I sat down without being greeted, and the only conversation I heard was from other tables. One player would make it 9x pre then shake his head when he didn’t get action. Another was an actor, who Hollywooded for a long time before raising queens pre. When I was beat in a spot where I had to call, the acted so indifferent to what was happening I almost found a sick hero fold to a 1/3 pot bet on the river. He snorted and gathered his chips, as if privileged to more than he had bet. Once he had my money, he immediately went broke in pure moronic fashion. The only words said were some mumbles about the “high hand” and then the ever-grating whine for more players.
At the second table, anytime some one got up, other players would sit out, refusing to play short handed.
At the third table I finally found some people who were enjoying themselves. I was immediately called to the 3/5 game- yet I considered staying just to see the difference a better environment makes. (But duty called.)
How is anyone supposed to be attracted to poker when they are a newb and this is how players behave? If poker disappears or dies, it will be a self-inflicted and thus deserved wound.