What is Luck, Anyway?

9 04 2011

As all of you well know, the words luck, or lucky, have been thrown around quite a bit when it comes to certain players in our group. I, myself have been blatantly guilty of doing this. With Liviu’s good (and lucky) play ever since he joined us, it got me to thinking…., what the hell does luck mean anyway? And more importantly, how can we get it working for us?

I’ve been doing some research on the internet and found some rather interesting interpretations of what luck means. For one thing, it is not, as I had mistakenly thought, a chance happening. Professor Wiseman (University of Hertfordshire in the UK) has this to say:

“Is there a distinction between chance and luck?”

“Yes,” he said, “there’s a big distinction. Chance events are like winning the lottery. They’re events over which we have no control, other than buying a ticket.”

Luck, on the other hand, comes about by believing. In other words, luck is having faith.

Tennessee Williams wrote: “Luck is believing you are lucky” And many people think that there is power in a thought made concrete by a lucky charm – being a constant reminder of purpose and desire, such as my lug nut.

So, expect good fortune and you just might get it. Henry Ford summed it up another way:

“If you think you can, then you can. And if you think you can’t, you’re right!”

Perhaps this is why, over the centuries, belief and faith have become entangled in so-called superstition – something to which many people feel inwardly obliged to adhere to. This is typically manifested by, for example, the tradition of touching wood (or ‘knocking on wood’) which dates back thousands of years. Even these days, there are few people who will openly tempt their superstitions. This is because it would go against their inwardly-held beliefs . . one sure way to attract BAD luck. In fact, so many people avoid the number 13 that it’s often absent from the floor of a hotel or the seat number on a plane.

The idea of luck, both good and bad, is firmly rooted in religion and spirituality. It all really comes down to faith. You either believe you are lucky, or you do not, and the outcome more often than not comes down according to what you believe you are. I may have been my own worst enemy in believing that Alex has been so lucky at our table. The more I attribute good luck to him, the more I am re-inforcing his good luck and my bad luck when it comes to the hands that we play against each other.

The best and simplest definition that I have found is attributed to Oprah Winfrey who says: Luck is a matter of preparation meeting opportunity. And so, if guys like Alex and Liviu are prepared, and have a good knowledge of the game, when opportunity does come, they create their own luck. It seems to be the same with Mauro and Dave believing that they’re gonna get donked out on, and so, more often than not, their prediction comes true. Disagree with me? Tell me what you think.

I finally completed the stats summary for last year, and here it is: 2010 Official Year-end Stats

In regards to last night’s game at my mum’s, on one hand, it’s nice to see Alex losing big, for a change, while on the other hand, I know he’s hard up for cash and as a father, it bothers me to see him lose that much money, but hey, he deserves to lose now and then doesn’t he? Maybe he won’t be so cocky next time. Oh, you didn’t hear? He owed Dustin $40, and he told him that he was gonna pay him last night after the game because he was gonna kick our asses as usual. Here’s what I have to say to that…. AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!! Just desserts oh son-of-mine, just desserts.

This Friday’s game will be at my groovy pad, and I think we’re gonna have a new semi-regular joining us, so see all you ladies there.

SpiC out

Sireel’s stats:POKER 2011

Twins for y’all this week (mmmmm, camel toe):

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11 responses

11 04 2011
Luís Jordão

Well, let me ask you this: what is the chance of I makin’it with these two twin babies. Do you think if I believe I’m lucky I get to do it?
The fact is that chance is a matter of probability as you well know. Luck is a myth. It simply does not exist. Ok, you may “feel” ou “believe” you’re lucky but that does not change the fact that the sequence in wich the cards are being dealed and the amount of cards each player is requesting are issues also ruled by chance, not luck. Everything is then cause and effect and everything that happens is definitely linked with what happened before. Nothing happens because you’re lucky. It happens because by chance, probability, the causes and conditions were coincident and you had a good hand. What was Alex feeling when he lost? Unlucky? Nop, I don’t think so! If so he shouldn’t have played. And that comes to the “preparation”. That’s true, if you prepare yourself good you get more chances (not luck) of being successful. The same way you buy more lottery tickets, you get a better chance of winning. It does not mean you will. You will if cause and condition are gathered in that precise moment in time and space. And conditions are very hard to gather. There are conditions you can influence like being prepared, like take a good decision when needed, but most conditions you simply do not control, like how many cards are being dealt (is that the correct term?) for each player or if you are the first to ask or the last, or how the cards were shuffled and so on. Much more conditions can be named.
Bottom line, it is my belief that luck is a myth, nothing more, and it serves well to create a certain enchantment to players. After all if one were to be conscient of the chances of winning in a game there would be only one player per game and so it wouldn’t happen at all, would it?
See’ya! And best of luck to you, cousin! Hehe!

11 04 2011
sireelpoker

See? That’s what I thought too, before I started researching all this crap on the net. One thing I do know for sure is that there are as many interpretations and beliefs as there are individuals. I respect your opinion, but you just try and tell an Asian person that luck doesn’t exist and they’ll look at you as if you’re some kind of space alien.

12 04 2011
Luís Jordão

Hehe! Maybe so. But, still. it’s a fake belief. It only leads to addiction and misery and that explains a lot. Historically asian cultures (people) are poor and “luck” is a good replacement for God and faith. In Portugal we share that culture, too.

14 04 2011
beef

Let me tell you a little something about luck… When you combine bad luck with a bunch of red wine, it’s never a good night!

19 04 2011
angry

hey, you censored me! wtf? all i said was that your dustin/alex tidbit reminds me of two other guys i know. and can i have the contact of the watchers of this blog? i just want to ask them questions about doing a blog, not a poker one!
i believe we will be doing the next 5 fridays at my house. any objections?

22 04 2011
sireelpoker

I did no such thing. I never censor anyone, not my place.

19 04 2011
angry

the next 5 after this weekend starting april 29. also a japanese tsunami fundraiser hold ’em tourney in bby on friday may 6. doors open 6:15 starts at 7. $50 advance, $60 door. any interest?

22 04 2011
sireelpoker

Game at mom’s tonight.

22 04 2011
Bob

You can’t have 5 fridays because we are supposed to rotate and I object.You are just to cheap to pay gas to travel out here.

28 04 2011
sireelpoker

I know, I know. Excrement has been given to me for being too lazy to blog. I’m just caught up in the excitement of the playoffs, that’s all. But one will be forthcoming after the game at Ken’s this Friday. It’s gonna be a full house so expect the donks to rear their ugly heads.

30 06 2012
Jon

You do need luck but cant ever rely on it!

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