trip reports

The Spirit of Solve For Why, Part I

Matt Berkey is a sinewy man with a lean, slightly bulbous skull, shaven to the uneven surface his pock marked and rough face allows. His mouth, lined with a strong nasolabial fold, is naturally serious. When he grows his hair out, it clumps dense and brown and neat, vaguely Briton, yet in that state it doesn’t seem to belong to this particular face and head – a boy’s coif on a severe and indifferent countenance. Today, lecturing from his bedroom/lecture hall and clipped to a no attachment (appropriately enough), the lockless Berkey appears much more himself. A man whose skin alone, exposed valiantly to the American Southwest’s heat and dust and wind and general lack of supervision, is its own best uniform. Unlike many of the ex-online regs, with their virtue-signaling charity patches and weak-kneed politics, or the paracomfortable businessmen he battles, Matt Berkey, founder of the Solve For Why Academy, lives as, appears to be, and is something of a Las Vegas warrior.

Fittingly then, Berkey’s shoulders are broad, and his arms muscled and rangy. When he addresses you, his brown eyes zero in but his neck doesn’t seem to want to turn all the way toward its object. The strain of sore muscles? The fanatic who can only look ahead? Either way, or both, Berkey’s “alias,” as an even grimmer figure in his circle would term it, is clear:

Matt Berkey is a soldier of poker.

As with all great grunts, Berkey also has learned and knows how to lead. This derives from the acquired, sometimes hidden humility of those who have served, whether it be time or country, personal crisis or long-standing passion. Off hours or in the midst of his Solve For Why Academy, a three-day introduction to the principles of his poker strategy, the soldier of poker barks at our group in an unusually resonant basso – you can feel the ribs in his voice – but the catch is that it is never quite completely as natural as you’d imagine from such a growler. It’s not insincerity one detects– no, it’s the tone underlying the cavernous and intimidatingly healthy voice of a man who really does not actually want to bark at anyone, but has embraced, increasingly gleefully, his destiny that he should do it.

And so, the front of the room, and for that matter, the poker media’s front page, has now become Berkey’s place after many years of relatively obscure labor. Leadership is a vacuum that demands ceaseless filling, and though his life could have taken many different courses and to different rooms and different audiences, now unanchored by the vagaries of his life and unusual career, here he is, filling the demanding air of an upper-level loft with a fighting poker strategy whose spirit is half its explanation. The responsibility of one who seeks out friends and followers but lives with the nagging feeling that it is not enough will always push ahead. Our dissatisfaction inevitably finds its way to satisfying others. Thus we find, from the ambiguous tones of his voice, the themes of one Matt Berkey, resident poker genius of Spanish Trails:

What do I do with this life? With this knowledge? With these friends? With the time I have? With the time I don’t have?

We’ll get to all that, or perhaps, all of us will get to that. For, me, I’m much shallower, self-centered, and just curious: what does such a man do in the social wasteland of Las Vegas? After all, her endless bros and transients and cons and gold diggers and hangers-on comprise a frivolous town, one which, like Venice in its heyday, makes whores of her women and dandies of her men. How actually humble is Berkey, a man known for his exterior arrogance, in his deepest places? What will he settle for? Who, if anyone, actually knows the soldier of poker, a man who spent the most naturally vivacious years of his mortal life mastering black and red and white rectangles? Does anyone care who does not have a felicitous transaction on their mind?

Nevertheless, ignore the man behind the curtain, the stacks, and the Google Drive. (And pass on more retelling of Pittsburgh and baseball – our Biography Channel approach to understanding each other is a natural but incredibly tedious one.) We’re in Vegas, and life can’t help but be good. The heat is hot, the wind is breezy, the breeze is windy, and the ball of fire in the endless sky is sunny. All is square and flat and wide and repeatedly, pointlessly pleasant. Even having been half-mastered, however, the desert remains oppressive – a cruel master and turgid slave which all the plaster and concrete and indoor plumbing in the world will never conquer. We enjoy Vegas not exactly joyfully, but in the manner of a last blow-out before it, whatever it is, begins. And the wait, unfortunately, for Berkey’s covenant gate is long. Security at the White House, it seems, is tougher. Oh, my license again? Pat down?

I arrived with three students – two others took separate routes – at the Berkey house, one of those vaguely palazzo, giant split level white domiciles that suggest California and golf and underused appliances and affairs and leasing fees and recently acquired financial footing. The door is confidently unlocked and we see two significant sights, the first of which let us know, stunned, that this trip and experience is at last absolutely tangible: the noted RFID poker table, the maze where Berkey and his partners release their student lab rats to find the way. Hustling camera crew and staff, still hours from the first hand, are already preparing multiple cameras, lights, and computers.

Also, however, a curious item in the foyer commands attention. In a house indifferently decorated – somewhere on the spectrum of vacation rental, divorcee splurge and baller pad, is a curious and deliberate choice: an imitation suit of armor, raised up on the wall to be the center of the visitor’s first attentions.

Detail from Isolation

The Academy students, one for each seat of the full-ring poker table, began to fill and circulate. Most of them were, in fact, my own: this Academy was going to have a unique dynamic. I had led most of them through an extended reading of Andrew Seidman’s Easy Game. Chapter by chapter over three months, we went deep into Seidman’s casually tuned but highly attuned exploitative approach to the game of poker. I selected this book – really there was no other one that could be chosen – because Seidman’s concepts, and above all, his vocabulary, are of prime influence on the Berkian mind and the Solve For Why approach. Burn this book at your own peril, aspirants and acolytes and hell raisers.

My student group had also spent time examining all the nuances of the Solve For Why Capped Game Webinar. In the course of providing guidance, I led the group in a reexamination of nearly every aspect of this strategy, broke down the three places where it derives its expected value, and researched its nuances (and lack of nuances – a key part of understanding its application). Overall it’s a remarkable if necessarily incomplete three hours of poker theory, so simple in some respects but raw enough to need many clarifications for real game play. What is most fascinating is not its prime directives, however. Buried in the third part of the video is an extremely strong hint of what’s to come at the Academy itself. One could reverse engineer the outline of much of the Solve For Why Academy approach from this devastatingly simple strategic concept, one which is basically Berkey’s own restatement of the basic paradigm of all hold’em games.

My students each have little in common with each other save a talent for and obsession with the game. Steve, aka ChipXtractor, is a noted poker and Red Chip enthusiast, a generous man who has lived a good life and treated the people around him well. He’d been playing for an age but had not quite wrestled the demon of poker theory to its knees when he turned to me for guidance. The Easy Game group had been a milestone in his poker growth, as we confronted everything in such detail he was not able to evade the challenge or dip into his all too easy alter ego of poker maestro, the bartender and businessman with the gift of gab. By the end of our study he always nailed the concepts he was asked to explain, an impressive volte-face which precipitated his leaving my supervision for the deeps of the East Coast NL mines and self-guided study. After a decade of throwing money at coaches and books, it’s his great leap forward.

Jason, known as Skors in the forums, has been with me since I began coaching. I was anxious that the group aid him. Stuck in high rake, short stack charity rooms, games which are the rake-assisted suicide of many aspiring players because of the high variance and low margin for error, his confidence has been shaken. Jason is a naturally aggressive player whose wide range has left him comfortable with winning principles but has also punished him in these restricted buy-in situations where an online, equity conservation style is a safer alternative. While the webinar solidified a raw, alternate approach to dealing with these games, his investment in the Academy was his biggest of his career – for him the stakes were high, so to speak. We had agreed we would end coaching after some follow up and he’d be making or breaking it in the poker world later this summer. Obviously, much was riding on his time with Matt, Christian, and Jordan – yet another, unexpected obstacle would stand in his way.

The last of the three students I was rooming with for the trip is Christian H. Only a year into poker, this player is proving a fast learner and is surely one of the least experienced players to ever attend the Academy. Novice to the scene, he has a lot of the natural joy of the game that a player must have to survive, the joy that many unfortunately lose along the way, worn down by beats and concepts and the natural befuddlement which stems from poker’s endless relational intricacies. Christian seems to have been raised well and to have been encouraged along the way. He is therefore very comfortable taking up space, right or wrong: this healthy amount of self-love will carry him far in life and poker – and into some trouble, I foresee. His high IQ makes him a natural for dealing with complexity, a requirement in playing great poker and finding the alternatives and adjustments that make for winning decisions.

These three settled in, finding a living area with the requisite flat screen, which kept up a side of mute and frenzied sports programming every hour we were there. I used to tell people that televised sports don’t actually exist, that they are merely pictures beamed into bars on a subscription basis. (I remember having a dentist who mounted miniature televisions above the heads of his clients and always insisted that I watch table tennis – following the ball kept the painful investigation of my teenage hygienic failures more tolerable.) For some reason, though, this facetious theory never gained much traction, but here chez Berkey, with so much going on – players and Academy founders going through introductions, the film production team hustling through preparations – it never seemed so possibly true. We had serious business at hand, and the television screen at nine a.m. was Solve For Why’s version of magazines and coffee table books and ping-pong for the clients. Jason, slumped on the black couch, wasn’t mesmerized by the moving pictures, however: something was wrong with his innards.

There were unexplained things going on. In a corner of the house, a young man was in an adjacent room sitting in front of a work station, talking into a head set, his hands on a mouse and keyboard or waving them at the screen. He talked nonstop, but we could not hear him through the door. What was that about? Other people would pass through the house – a couple who dabbled in homeless chic (or were there more than two of them?), who favored the kitchen and who were never introduced. There seemed to be some sort of issue at some point. Did they live here? Where were all the rooms exactly? The living space, kitchen, and foyer comprised more square feet than many houses, the hallways seemed hidden, like the Devil’s apartment in the Pacino film.

The upstairs was all Berkey’s. An undivided floor with a double door entryway, his room is big enough for two dozen chairs and two lounge chaises, one of which I would occupy as Observer to the lectures. Nearby, a king-sized bed, upon which later I’d see his dogs make themselves at home. In the far corner, a full desk and office space, familiar to those who watch the S4Y Twitch Stream and the now growing number of Solve For Why Chronicles. To the left, the apartment extends equally deep but differently. A true walk-in closet and dressing room seems more luxurious than needed. Just past the lecture screen, however, lies the true ostentatious jewel of the house: a spacious, octagonal bathroom, paneled with mirrors and ringed by sinks. It’s outrageously large and makes you think about Las Vegas’ coming water crises. The Jacuzzi bath will sooth your concerns, at least for this life.

Each day began in this space with a lecture by the three members. Aided by PowerPoint slides (featuring some of my finest scribbles, exchanged for my place at the Academy), the S4Y strategy was unfolded from principles outward. A break for lunch would follow, spread from a typical corporate caterer: Chipotle, Panera, and such. In the center of the kitchen island counter, several pound collections of bulk raw nuts – healthy fat signals of Berkey’s vehement commitment to health. (We’d soon learn from him that breakfast is overrated and that eight egg scrambles at noon keep the metabolic furnaces burning more fiercely. Berkey, naturally, would not be touching our pedestrian spread.) Toting paper plates, it’s then that we first wander the yard. Even more bro-pad than the sparse and sporty indoors, there’s a basketball court, an outdoor gym, and a fire pit. There’s an extravagant grill with more nobs and cooking space than some restaurant kitchens. The pool and Jacuzzi, built up into artificial rock wall, simulate a grotto. Bountiful but underused, this acreage: the pool is becoming a bit of a pond, and that grill looks like a typical poker player – some activity and scrubbing required.

However, on day one I wouldn’t see much of the lecture or my scribbles. Jason remained on the couch downstairs, still suffering and not ready to join the group. It was very unfortunate but a natural possibility considering the night before. Having gathered at the “Desert Paradise” condo – one of an endless number of sweet deals Steve, a true mover and shaker, had conjured up from the greedy heat for us, a late night dinner was in order. We took the lazy man’s way out, driving two blocks and identifying a Mexican joint for some take out. When we returned to the condo I saw Jason unveil his meal: a monstrous, puffed and bloated burrito sank in a dank pool of viscous tomato and cheese. I quickly dubbed it the “Mexican Journalist,” and just as speedily, Jason consumed every bite of it, red moat water included. We all chatted for a bit while I smoked in the baking night, before soon turning in. We were wordlessly anticipating a strenuous day ahead at the Academy.

So, it was not unexpected that Jason now texted me from Berkey’s waiting room sofa: time to go to the hospital. I grabbed the car keys from Steve while the others sat silently in keen attention. All men, all different ages, all different circumstances, and all aspiring to some piece of more than just Berkey’s strategy: it was this lifestyle, The Skateboardthe room they were in – that damn bathroom and everything it meant – that they were aspiring to (well, all but one or two, which we’ll get to). They’d paid a handsome sum for these three days of extreme poker learning – a risk predicated on a great reward.

Berkey was finding his stride- the Academy was underway and the audience his. The Solve For Why partners, each impressive in their own right as players and thinkers, were still more than a bit in thrall of the the soldier of poker, who was rapidly becoming more drill-sergeant: Christian Soto sat as he always does, somewhere between respectfully, exaggeratedly placid and dying to argue; Jordan Young was forthright, sharply attentive and correctly obedient to the social order.

As I stepped out and descended the stairway, Berkey’s voice boomed. He was about to propose his Skateboard vs. Car thought experiment, where one’s appetite for that very reward and risk were to be measured.

Which do you choose, Berkey would tell them. Danger or safety? Living or dying?

This was what everyone had come for.


  1. “I used to tell people that televised sports don’t actually exist, that they are merely pictures beamed into bars on a subscription basis.” Brilliant business idea! Why are you in poker? love it.

    “Which do you choose, Berkey would tell them. Danger or safety? Living or dying?” – this is both an uplifting and dangerous statement. Most players, even (or especially?) the best, will have dreams broken in this game. As ex-military (who actually faced enemy guns) I know that life is a gift and that poker and money is all a game. Maybe that’s the true essence of this statement, don’t be afraid to risk money since that’ll all it is and will not go to the grave with you. The nights I lay sleepless contemplating my various misplays and bad beats, I should remember this.

    1. Right, well, I would take it in a metaphorical spirit – the life and death of your bankroll is a far less worrisome one than the more serious one, is Berkey’s point.

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The OOP Lexicon is a user-developed poker glossary.

Absolute Position
Being last to act (e.g. closest to the button) postflop.

Advancing Leverage
Aggressive actions intended to shift the leverage point closer to the current street.

A bluff or value hand which is a natural candidate for balancing another hand because of their shared qualities, such as AA and AK; usually helps planning range splitting and line construction.

Auto profit threshold (APT)
A bluff made with positive expectation resulting from the opponent under defending vis-a-vis bet sizing. The inverse of MDF.

Choosing to support either value bets or bluffs with their converse.

A bet is a proposition.  It’s the first offer on the pot with regard to the outcome of the game. Each player, in turn, has the opportunity to lay or change the price on the pot to the rest of the players. “The language of poker.” The bet, as opposed to the raise, is most often and most easily allied to the merged pricing construction.

To remove combinations of hands from a range based on cards in your hand or on the board.

Cards which influence our combinatorial assumptions. Ex: We face resistance on T76ss while we hold As7d. Both our cards act as blockers. Our ace of spades blocks (limits) a number of flush draws our opponent could hold, while our seven blocks a number of two pair and sets our opponent could hold. *See also Block and Unblock

Blocker Bet
A small bet made by an out-of-position player.

Board Texture
The available community cards and the set of conditions which inform its relationship to a logical range.

The worst hands in a betting range.  Depending on context this could be the worst hand in a value bet range or the bluffing section of polarized range.

A range descriptor indicating a range shape with a specific high or low boundary.  A range bounded high won't contain some number of the best linear hands ranked from the top down.  This is equivalent to a "capped" range.  A range bounded low won't contain some number of the worst linear hands ranked from the bottom up.  This is often useful to describe a range that doesn't include any air or very weak hands.

A strategic mode in which a player is attempting to deny their opponent(s) equity share of the pot through aggression. Often referred to as “denying equity” or “buying up equity”.

A range is capped when it represents little to no nutted combinations as confirmed by prior action.

A continuation bet. A bet made by the player with initiative as a continuation of their initiative on a prior street.

The ability to accurately range an opponent based on all available information at a decision point.  An understanding of your hands exact equity.

Closing Action
Acting last where no subsequent action is possible behind you.  For example calling a UTG raise in the BB or calling in position postflop with no players behind.

Cold Call/Cold Bet
An action is considered “cold” when it comes from a player entering into the pot has not previously put chips voluntarily in the pot. Ex: the UTG opens, the BTN 3bets. If the SB were to call or raise, it would be a cold-call or a cold-4bet.

The branch of mathematics the deals with finite number sets. Used in poker in determining the amount of combinations of certain hands in a range.

When a blind that is not the biggest blind calls the amount of the biggest blind. Ex: At $2/$5, action folds around to the SB and the SB completes. Meaning they just call. The BB can complete when there is a straddle.

A capped range that contains only middling value hands. A range without the polarized portion.

Logical advancement of combinations across streets.

Dark Side of the Deck
The large swath of hands, often off-suit, that fall outside of conventional playable recommendations. Counter-equity hands.

Dead Money
Money in the pot that is not being fought for.  A passive player creates dead money when they call a bet preflop and looking to play fit-or-fold postflop. Dead Money is often confused with the money in the pot.

Delayed Cbet
A cbet made on the turn by the preflop raiser when the flop checked through.

Delaying Leverage
Passive actions intended to maintain a likely late street leverage point, or possibly to avoid a leverage point entirely.

A strategic break from one’s standard construction as an exploit of a particular player’s profile or construction.

Diminishing Medium Value Category
A Seidman concept in which when one’s middling value hand range is too small and transparent to our opponent and thus either that range should be shifted into the top of a polarized range or the nutted portion should be shifted into the medium value range. Ex: AQo or TT being 3bet preflop.

A cbet that is less than the preflop raise. Ex: BTN opens to $25, we 3bet to $90 from the SB, BTN calls. On the flop we cbet $70.

Dry Board
A board texture that yields relatively few logical hands value. Often containing one medium or high card and disconnected low cards. Ex: Q53r, T622r.

Dual Mentalities
A Seidman concept in which when we decide to go postflop with a weak hand against a nutted range, we should either be looking to out flop it or steal the pot away. We base our decision against the player type we are up against and never go post with both mentalities at once.

Dynamic Board
A flop texture in which the runout is very likely to change the order of top ranking hands. Ex: 954tt, 742r.

Effective Stack
The smallest stack to VPIP in a given hand. Their stack decides the amount of money that can be played for or threatened before an all-in.

Effective nuts
A value hand that can be played for stacks as if it were the actual nuts.  This is a relative hand ranking based on range assumptions and opponent type.

A measure of how well the equity of a hand is deployed. Efficiency can also be used as a measure of what is risked vs what is gained for a given bet size.

Either/Or Philosophy
A Seidman concept in which a particular street can be a very good spot for value, meaning our opponent is never folding, or a very good spot to bluff, meaning our opponent is never calling, but that those spots cannot be concurrent.

Borrowed from economics, a measure of the sensitivity of a range or hand relative to the price offered.  Ranges (or hands) described as elastic will narrow, sometimes quickly, in response to increases in price.  Those described as inelastic will not.

The percent pot share of a holding or range on any given street if the hand were to go to showdown with no further betting action.

Equity Pusher
A analytic approach to the game in which a player views the correct actions only through the lens of their hands equity vs. their opponent’s range. Often this player type has a lack of understanding of overall strategy and plays their range face up with few bluffs.

Expected Value
The mathematical formula for how much a player’s action is expected to make with their hand vs. their opponent’s range. EV = ($towin * %ofwin) - ($tolose * %ofloss)

Face Up
A player is playing their range “face up” when their actions directly correspond with their desired outcome. Ex: A player bets half-pot three streets with a range that has no bluffs. A player 3bets to 7x with JJ.

False Polarization
Otherwise known as Faux-Po; a polarizing action taken with a merged range.

The result of losing your entire table stakes. All the way down to the felt.

A call of a cbet with a weak holding with the likely intention of taking the pot away when the opponent shuts down. Often done by an in position preflop caller.

The convergence of positions, stack depths, and preceding actions at a given decision point.

A mathematical formula developed by Phil Galfond for calculating the expected value of one’s range construction vs. an opponent’s holding.

A computer programming term that means "garbage in, garbage out" which also applies to poker forums when a poster seeks an in-depth conversation about a hand, but fail to provide pertinent information such as stack sizes, bets sizes, table dynamics and player tendencies.

Game Theory
The applied science of combining mathematical models with logic to craft winning poker strategies.

Game Theory Optimal
A set of strategies is GTO if no player can unilaterally deviate and increase his average profit. ~ Will Tipton.  GTO does not mean best possible response, highest EV, or maximally exploitative play.

Implied Odds
Additional value likely to be accrued if you make your hand on a later street.

Sometimes referred to as the betting lead, a common situation in which the passive player yields to the aggressive player postflop, or the last aggressor continues betting on subsequent streets.

A bet or raise intended to force out the rest of the field in order to play heads up against a weaker opponent who has entered the pot through limping, raising, or posting the blinds.

Loose aggressive player type. Generally overused and inaccurate.

A bet made from out of position after a passive action. Often referred to as a donk bet on the flop.

He knows that I know that he knows I know.

A bet or raise that signals the hand will be played for stacks.  Within reason, it is accomplished by betting with a sizing that will create RSP equal to 1 on the following street.

Limp First In

A consecutive range of hands decreasing in strength from top to bottom; generally meaning value hands. Equivalent to "merged."

Lockdown Board
A board on which the nuts have often already been made.  More prevalent in PLO but sometimes useful in no-limit, for example on monotone flops and boards with available common straights e.g. JT9, T98, 987, etc.

1) A range of hands that includes both strong and medium value; 2) in reference to medium value; 3) the merged construction describes the natural representation of a wide range through a bet.

Mini Stop-N-Go
A Seidman concept, a line taken by a OOP PFR where flop is check/called and turn is lead.

Minimum Defense Frequency (MDF)
The necessary defending (calling/raising) frequency to prevent an opponent from auto-profiting.  The inverse of APT.

Natural Action
A check, bet, or raise which is exactly suited to a player's range and situation (e.g. a pfr's continuation bet on AK2r).

A player who will not put chips into the pot without a very strong and sometimes only nutted hand.

The best possible hand.

Nuts-To-Air Ratio (NAR)
In a polarized betting line, the ratio of value to bluff.  As used by Seidman, not limited to polarization but sometimes used to label general opponent tendency of value to bluff.

Old Man Coffee. Typically an older, retired player that likes to play bingo with ATC, but will only continue with the nuts.

The first voluntary action. The first action or bet to voluntarily enter the pot.

A bet that is more than the size of the pot.

Perceived Range
Refers to the range of hands that your opponent thinks you could have in a certain playing situation. This can be interpreted and thus misinterpreted from your playing style and position at the table.

A range consisting of very strong and very weak hands.

Post Oak Bluff
A small bluff on a late street that has little chance of winning the pot.  Generally interpreted as “gutless” in the past but now fulfilling certain functions as betting efficiencies are understood.

Positional Protection
When the strength of a range is perceived to be capped or uncapped based on which position an action is taken from.

When an action or player is perceived to have strong hands in its range.

Protection Bet
A wager which denies equity to hands which will only give action if they significantly improve; "a value bet which does not want a call."

The rejection of the offered price and the laying of a new higher price.  Raises represent a more narrow range of hands and trend towards polarization.

Range Advantage
Implementation or study tool that refers to 1) most basically, equity measurement of one range against another; 2) or also including a combination of further factors including availability of nutted hands, the nuances of the runout, and positional protection.

Range Manipulation
Deliberate line work/bet sizing made to narrow a range or keep a range wide.

Range Switch
A deliberate change in range composition made to thwart a player who is reading our range too accurately in any spot.  Reduces transparency, fights assumptions, and wins the leveling war if implemented correctly.

Ratio of Stack To Pot
RSP. The stack to pot ratio at any point in a hand, generally used post-flop as opposed to Stack to Pot Ratio.

Taking a hand to showdown and realizing its full equity.  Generally used with regard to passive actions.

The mutual exchange of chips resulting from similar play and ideas.  Reciprocity is a common bi-product of group-think.  A true edge by definition cannot be reciprocal.

Relative Position
A player’s position measured against the aggressor's position.  Generally this is used going to the flop.  For example, if UTG raises and several players call behind, calling in the big blind would give you the best relative position.  You will act after seeing how the field responds to a likely continuation from the preflop aggressor.  In the same scenario calling immediately after the preflop aggressor results in the worst relative position.  You will have to act immediately after a continuation without seeing how the remaining players will respond.  Strong relative position confers an information edge.

The ability of hand to maintain equity across streets against a betting range or as part of a betting range.

Reverse Implied Odds (RIO)
Hands that often win small pots or lose large pots suffer from reverse implied odds.

Popularized by Mathew Janda, a descriptor for how well a hand retains equity over streets of play.  Hands described as robust have equity that does not suffer as an opponent's range becomes stronger.  Often these hands are currently both strong and invulnerable, or have the ability to become very strong by the river, relative to the opponent's range.

Fourth and Fifth Street cards following a given flop texture.

Scale of Protection
Poker theorem which states that the more protected or strong an opponent's range is, the higher the degree of denial or retention a counter will require.

Sklansky Bucks
Dollars won (or lost) in expected value regardless of actual hand result.

Any one of many possible poker archetypes found at low stakes games.

A reraise made after a player has raised and one or more players has called in-between.

Static Board
A flop texture in which the runout is unlikely to change the order of top ranking hands. Ex: AK7r, KK4r.

A passive action followed by an aggressive action, out of position.  For example, a call followed by a lead on the next street.

Streets of Value
A crude shorthand measurement for how much betting a hand can tolerate and still be best at showdown more often than not.

Tight aggressive opponent type. Generally overused and misapplied.

TAG's Dilemma
The paradox created by having a top-heavy range played so aggressively that it misuses equity vis-à-vis position and holding.

The Great Range Fantasy
The common idea that we know our opponent’s range and frequencies precisely; most commonly seen in post-hoc analysis to justify microedge decisions.

Thin Value
A bet that is only slightly more likely to be called by worse than by better. Associated with the merged pricing construction and bet-fold lines.

Three Fundamentals
The most fundamental variables for decision making: position, stack size, and community cards.

The best hands in a given range.

Two-Way Bet
A bet that expects calls from worse hands and incorrect folds at the same time, a simultaneous value bet and bluff line.

The psychological effect of feeling like you’re losing because your stack size isn’t as large as it once was during a session, even though it’s more than what you’re in the game for.

(e.g. You bought in for $100, ran it up $450, but now only have $175 in front of you.)

A hand that has no negative card removal effects on the target range.  Bottom set, for example, unblocks top pair top kicker.

A range that is perceived to contain the nuts in any given line.  Capped ranges may become uncapped during transitions for example from preflop to flop, or flop to turn.

A turned nut straight after raising flop with a gutter.

Value Owning
Making value bets with a hand that has less than 50% equity when called.

Voluntarily Put Money In Pot (VPIP)
The frequency at which a player limps, calls, or raises preflop.

Volatile Board
A flop texture where equities will often shift on the turn and river.  See “dynamic”.

An illusory cooler where one player makes a massive mistake equity mistake and loses his stack with a strong but second best hand; also known as a Jam Basket.

Wet Board
A board texture that allows for a lot of logical hands to continue. Often made up of medium rank connected cards. Ex: KT9tt, Tc8c6s-7c-Ac.

“Walk In, Fuck Shit Up, Walk Out” a hashtag used by instagram poker players.

Winning Player
A forum poster who offers reciprocal advice under the guise of questionable positive low stakes results. A weak player or fish, in general.

Young Man Coffee. Is very much an OMC, but younger.  They usually only continue with the nuts, often under the illusion of playing a GTO style.