In the laid back, boxer shorts-wearing, beer-sipping, belly-button lint-picking world of online poker there’s not a lot to get a low limit player’s blood pumping anymore. After you play your first hundred no-limit tourneys, after you win a few and lose a few, after you jump up in limits before you should, you finally hit just about every situation worth breathing heavy over. It’s about that time you start finding a little more interest in the boobies section of

And then you finally hit a hand where it gets a little exciting.

Make no mistake, I am just a lonely husband in search of good times. I’m not playing for a wage. I’m not playing to pay the bills. I’m playing to maintain a big enough bankroll that I can keep playing. In the sad, sad world of backroom, average whiteboy, online poker, I am a desperado of low-limit nothingness. Or something like that.

Sometimes I play smart. Sometimes I play carelessly. You tell me what happened in a cheap no-limit game last night.

On the button, I draw pocket nines. The pot is raised to $2.50 before it gets to me. I make it $5. Small blind calls as does the original raiser. Then, glory be, I flop a set. Of course, the flop could be prettier…7, 8, 9 with two hearts.

BB bets out at $5. Raiser makes it $10. And I’m looking at a set.

So, I actually think for once. Instead of measuring my navel-depth with a beer bottle, I consider what’s happening.

The original raiser raised in middle position, then called a re-raise. I figure him for a high pair. Jacks, probably. My set has him beat, but a ten on the turn or river beats me.

BB bet out $5 on the flop after calling a raise and re-raise. I figure him for a Ace high flush draw. I got that beat, but fear another heart.

So, I’ve got a set against what I believe is a high pair with a straight draw and a ace high flush draw. There’s about $30 in the pot.

I’m all in. $35 give or take. I figure the flush draw will fold and the high pair will call.

Not exactly. Flush draw calls. High pair folds (queens, as it turned out).

And that’s where my heart actually started pounding. Flush slothoki draw turns up A3h. There’s more than $90 in the pot.

It actually felt good, my heart playing “Whole Lotta Love” on my rib cage.

Or something like that.

It felt worse when a heart hit. And it felt worse when nothing else paired and my set lost to the flush.

So…I’m looking for the geniuses out there. The rounders. The, um, people who actually live within driving distance of a brick and mortar poker room.

Would you have made the same play?

Replies get the actual beer-bottle navel depth answer.

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