On Thanksgiving afternoon, I dropped in to Pechanga Casino’s poker room, which is only five minutes from my folks’ house in Temecula. Sat down at a 2/4 table.
Within a few minutes, I found myself in late position looking down at a 5 of clubs and 4 of clubs. Those little suited connectors. Fun stuff. I like raising with these hands before the flop. Doing this helps narrow the field a bit, forcing the low cards and mediocre hands out of the pot, leaving the big hands like AK or QQ. This way, if your small cards happen catch something on the flop, chances are you’ll be alone.
The flop comes 3 of clubs, Queen of diamonds, 6 of clubs. Well, whaddya know. I’ve got all kinds of things going on here; I’ve got the open-ended straight draw, a low flush draw, and a miracle straight flush draw.
I’m now in a situation to be calling things. There’s an early bet, suggesting somebody’s got a Queen, a pocket pair, or even some high clubs. A couple people call. I call.
The turn’s a red nine. Misses me. Again, there’s an early bet with some calls. I need to call.
The river hits me square: the 2 of clubs. I just made my straight flush. I naturally raise the pot, and a couple people call.
Turn ’em up, wow. Straight flush. The dealer calls the floorman over to announce that we’ve got a jackpot @ Table 11. I was delighted to learn that Pechanga has jackpots on the hour on Tuesdays and Thursdays. My straight flush was the high hand of the day, earning me $200.
I’m so thankful for that deuce of clubs on the river.