If you know of Red Chip Poker, you probably know of Persuadeo. He’s a unique and ever-present voice on our member blogs and forums. He also holds the distinction of winning a seat in last year’s Colossus WSOP event after winning the first-ever Red Chip Poker tournament/contest. For these reasons and many more, he’s our first subject for what will be a regular installment profiling our top Red Chip Poker PRO members.
Meet Persuadeo – Fast Facts
Hometown: East Coast
Current Residence: West Coast
Started Playing Poker: 2008
Favorite Poker Rooms: California Grand (sentimental favorite); online: Bovada (PLO/PLO8)
Currently Playing: Mostly $5 blinds
Official Website: persuadeo.nl
Forum Profile: persuadeo
Member Blog: Read here
How did you get into poker?
By coincidence two separate sets of friends started home games at the same time, and I was pretty much forced to play socially. I’m very competitive and often learn empirically, for better or worse, so once I was introduced I felt a compulsion to play more and more. Some of those people still remember me trying to learn the card rankings and probably would not believe how far I have come even if they read this.
How did you progress from a beginner to an advanced player that closely studies the game?
I have no idea how this all happened, and am trying to piece together the story myself. I have never been much of a games player and mostly am bored by them, but poker is special. As for learning, I am more of a forum guy and an experimenter at the tables; although I own a bunch of manuals, I have not actually managed to finish any poker books. I hope to rectify this as I take my game in new directions.
I remember playing my very first sit-n-go on Zynga at an internet cafe while on vacation in Korea; I tried to collude with a friend and couldn’t even do that right, causing him to dump chips to a third player in the hand. When I felt I was ready for cash games, I started a home game and hit the microstakes private game “scene” pretty hard in 2010-11.
I think things began to really look up for me when I starting putting in real volume at casinos. I remember going through a three month phase in 2011 or 2012 where I played what I guess was a very loose aggressive game, trying to break out of the TAG/Nit box that just didn’t impress me as a way to crush the games, and lost a bunch of money. However, when I emerged from this time, I suddenly found myself possessing the handreading skills that are the basis for my winning game. Not long after this, I pulled some poker friends together and got involved in impossibly long email and live debates over hands which probably sharpened my game into what it is today. I still have a long way to go.
Are you a full-time poker player? If not, what is your main profession?
I play for a living, but calling it a profession is a bit of a stretch. I’m finally getting my mind around it right now, actually. There’s a thread on RC where we discuss it and I am mysteriously a bit of an ass for no reason, probably because it’s a sore point for me. It’s an interesting issue I plan to write on, as my present vacation from the games has given me plenty to think about. I have other life goals and several important projects that I hope will be profitable.
How would you describe your poker playing style?
I am a chameleon who plays differently all the time. In general I am very aggressive and will often run the table. I’m not terribly patient and for a while my biggest problem was staying up late and melting down. I have an alter ego I named “Captain Bonkers” because I would run up huge scores then try something incredibly stupid and go home empty handed. I remember a televised cash game where Viffer complained he only knew how to bluff and couldn’t play value hands; I often feel this applies to me and is something I am trying to work on.
Besides poker, what are your other main interests?
I have always dabbled in writing and host a successful screenwriting group. My favorite day of the week is when I take off from the casino and meet with a very old friend with a languages background. We argue politics and translate whatever interests us over late night happy hour. It’s a reward for playing great poker and a consolation when I have failed. Related to this, I spend an extraordinary and regrettable amount of my income on food and restaurants; we all have our leaks. I used to be a very dedicated Argentine Tango dancer and I think I need to get back to this, as my poker career has severely derailed my social life. Tennis is my sport.
How has being a Red Chip member improved your game?
Red Chip’s coaches are very theoretical and my game is far more balanced now. I’d grasped the importance of balance very early on in my poker career but now I can employ this tactic or slip out of it naturally and effectively.
Are there any specific Red Chip videos or articles did you get a lot out of?
Splitsuit’s video on KQ changed the way I play that hand overnight and has made me a lot of money. Christian’s “Longball” article and occasional short videos on range play helped me realize something I had half-realized on my own, and gave me a lot of encouragement in creating the extremely aggressive style I always imagined suited me.
You’re a frequent poster in our forums. What do you like about Red Chip forums, especially compared to other forums?
I liked the pleasant attitude at RCP right off the bat. I once described RCP when asked about it as a “poker kindergarten” because it was obviously designed to have a great atmosphere for learning. I was a subscriber and briefly a frequent contributor to another poker training site but got a little tired of certain aspects and problematic posters whose attitude wore me out. Red Chip came about at the right time and place for me in my poker development.
There are so many good memories, I’m not sure where to start. For the most part, poker has been a very positive if unexpected addition to my life.
What are some of your fondest poker memories/highlights of your poker playing life?
My triad of poker friends have run some “bankroll challenges” which have created endless good and tough times to share. My trips to Vegas have always been memorable and strange for some reason; I love being there and came very close to moving to Vegas last year. There are so many good memories, I’m not sure where to start. For the most part, poker has been a very positive if unexpected addition to my life. I would count being busted in an underground game, which I wrote about for the blog, as a highlight, actually. I remember feeling tremendously amused and happy after I was released. My home game is one of the best around and is a source of great fun and income.
Do you have any advice or parting words of wisdom for other Red Chip members and poker players?
There is probably quite a bit I could say, but the best advice I can give comes from a violin masterclass I observed so many years ago. The legendary maestro was supervising a student who had chosen one of the most difficult pieces in the repertoire, and it was obviously a titanic struggle for him, a massive battle of will against the challenge and the pressure of performing for the master and his audience. However, rather than pick the student’s tortuous playing apart or try to correct the endless technical problems, the maestro instead asked the student to stop and breathe for while, to take a walk before he played, now and in future; essentially to relax into whatever piece he was attempting.
I think many players in the forums are trying to do and learn and fixate and perfect too many things, when they should be relaxing and adding to their game little by little, and just seeing where it takes them. Poker is, for the most part, fun and exciting and so you’re probably doing something wrong if you feel like the agonizing violin student.
Another, simpler thing is that many of the RC members play one level too small for their skill level.
Any projects, websites or causes you’d like to promote?
I think my blog, on Red Chip and at persuadeo.nl, has some valuable and enjoyable aspects, if you can get into it. Strategy can be kind of boring, and we have the forums for that, but I still include some important tidbits while I am meandering and telling my stories. Life is very full and poker players often miss out on a lot of great things in the midst of their obsession, so I constantly try to connect the game to the bigger picture.