This week on the Zoo Jerry Monaco, once the popular Imperator on the Red Chip Poker forum, emerges from radio silence. Back in the day on RCP when not only their founders posted but we were joined by Matt Berkey, Christian Soto, and other names in poker, Jerry gave us some of our most thoughtful threads. On today’s pod, we go all over the map from Covid to king-five, pharmaceutical culture to poker culture, and plenty of odds and ends in between.
If we have some knowledge of our own uncertainty about our measurements of our opponents and her ranges; if we have some measurement of our own stupidity (faults, mistakes, leaks, egoism, etc); and if we can use all of this and more in our games to know ourselves and know others; then we should be able to win more and play better.
Easier said than done.
One aspect of our uncertainty is variance. The cards come at us randomly and we will never know which cards are coming next. We use math to estimate the probabilities of and tolerance of each hand. (But part of that tolerance is what we call “fold equity;” an uncertain estimate of our opponents tolerance of our bets.) Let us call these measurements “mathematical.”
Another aspect of uncertainty is whether we should quit the poker table or not or whether we can select a good seat or see our opponents faces or measure and trust our opponents “tells”. Let us call these measurements “psychological.”
What ever you call all this, entropy by any other name is still entropy, positive or negative, more or less, and can be measured with some (un)certainty.
So yes, the game is not about being smart. It is usually the ones who think they are “smart” who also have false confidence, egoism, and pride. These are all psychological leaks. Such people mismeasure their own stupidity. The game is in part about not being as stupid as we usually are as biological beings who only have a limited capacity to make accurate measurements of anything, mathematically or psychologically.