Baby needs new shoes, by Julian Thew
by Julian Thew
Poker is a pretty unique career path to take. I remember when I took the plunge and went pro nearly six years back. Earnings were the primary reason for the decision but I
recognised that the flexible working hours would really enhance our lifestyle. And that's pretty much what happened; the money was good, we got to travel to and see some great places and I was probably at home for nine days out of fourteen; a pretty sweet ratio, free
to do as I pleased.
I didn't play any live cash or any online poker back then, for me there was just no need, I was sponsored and the European tournament circuit was proving lucrative.
As a Team PokerStars Pro I'm expected to play 20 hours a week so this year, whilst still focusing on the big live events, I wanted to apply myself to the online game. Going from zero to 20 hours a week was quite daunting at the start. It's meant proper time management and if nothing else at least the wife now understands that when I go into the
office it's to 'work' as opposed to 'play'.
My office sits right behind the kitchen/living room area and whilst this is very handy for access to the kettle and toaster combo it does have its drawbacks. When the three boys (2, 4 and 7) are kicking-off it's like World War III; now as a parent this is of course what I should expect and now be very used to (I mean my Dad just had to look at me in a certain way and my chin would wobble) but if you couple those moments with a few beats on the cash tables the old blood pressure really does get a thorough working-out.
Live & online are like chalk and cheese, and whilst frustrating at times I've really enjoyed the learning process. Tools likes Holdem Manager & Table Ninja are real eye openers and it's thanks to a heap of good friends that I at least now understand the basics.
So here I am nine months on and what a journey it's been. I always viewed 2010 as a transition year, and although I'm not there yet I've learnt more this year than I have in my
previous five as a pro. I've dabbled in most disciplines but you'll mainly find me on the 6-max $0.5-1 & 1-2 NL cash games.
My live tournament volume is way down this year and I was really hoping to play the last few EPT's of 2010, but we're expecting our fourth child in January and that's meant it's been a tough call to jet off for a week here and there.
The good news is that the tournament circuit isn't about to go anywhere soon and I know I'll be raring to go come spring...after all, baby needs new shoes.