Note: Not at the old Poker1 site. This 39-part series of quizzes, originally published (2004-2006) in Poker Player, is based on the Mike Caro University of Poker library of research and advice. In each entry, Mike Caro presents 10 questions covering a category of poker, targeted for beginner, intermediate, or advanced players. Answers with explanations appear below each quiz, with the questions repeated for easy reference.


The MCU Targeted Poker Quiz series

(See the index to this series)

Psychology (level: advanced)

  1. If you have two pair and bet, saying, “I probably either have a straight flush or I’m bluffing,” you’re trying to force an opponent to make a decision based on an either-or-situation, because…

    (a) you want to show your opponents how misleading you can be;

    (b) they’ll almost always make the wrong choice;

    (c) you’d like the luxury of betting without fearing a raise from a medium-strong hand;

    (d) nobody’s perfect.

  2. An opponent is significantly more likely to play sensibly if…

    (a) It’s the day before his birthday;

    (b) She’s pregnant;

    (c) He just sat down or just got even;

    (d) No opponent at the table is watching football on the screens inside the casino.

  3. Male opponents with recent tattoos are more likely to…

    (a) Raise recklessly;

    (b) Bluff;

    (c) Come into pots with weak hands;

    (d) All of the above.

  4. You should be more eager to buy coffee for the player on your right…

    (a) true;

    (b) false.

  5. What’s the main advantage of having a wild and carefree image?

    (a) you’ll be able to bluff more successfully;

    (b) you’ll be able to refuse to give loans more convincingly;

    (c) you’ll get called more often when you hold big hands;

    (d) all of the above.

  6. Most winning players go on tilt sometimes.

    (a) True;

    (b) False.

  7. Irritating your opponents by criticizing their play increases your chances of…

    (a) winning money from them over the years;

    (b) getting them to come into your future pots with weak hands;

    (c) play worse against you;

    (d) none of the above.

  8. (Choose best answer) If your opponents are bickering among themselves and distracted, it’s a poor time to…

    (a) Play a weak hand for advertising purposes;

    (b) Bluff;

    (c) Take a bathroom break;

    (d) Go all-in if you’re playing no-limit.

  9. It’s dangerous when you lose a lot more than you expected was probable, because you stop caring about making good decisions — and losing even more money doesn’t make you feel much worse.

    (a) True;

    (b) False.

  10. If you present a solid, tight, stable image, which of the following is an advantage?

    (a) you’ll have less fluctuation in your day-to-day earnings;

    (b) you’ll get a lot more calls with big hands;

    (c) you’ll be competing for bigger pots, on average;

    (d) all above and more are advantages — there are no disadvantages to a solid, tight, stable image.


Answers and explanations (with questions repeated for convenience)

Psychology (level: advanced)

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  1. If you have two pair and bet, saying, “I probably either have a straight flush or I’m bluffing,” you’re trying to force an opponent to make a decision based on an either-or-situation, because…

    (a) you want to show your opponents how misleading you can be;

    (b) they’ll almost always make the wrong choice;

    (c) you’d like the luxury of betting without fearing a raise from a medium-strong hand;

    (d) nobody’s perfect.

    Answer: (c) When you bet after saying, “I probably either have a straight flush or I’m bluffing,” you’re trying to get your opponent to think in either/or terms. Either he’s beat or you’re bluffing. You’d like the luxury of betting without fearing a raise from a medium-strong hand that beats you. Many players won’t raise, because they figure they’re either badly beat or you’re bluffing and there’s no reason to raise.

  2. An opponent is significantly more likely to play sensibly if…

    (a) It’s the day before his birthday;

    (b) She’s pregnant;

    (c) He just sat down or just got even;

    (d) No opponent at the table is watching football on the screens inside the casino.

    Answer: (c) Players who just sat down or just got even tend to play more sensibly, because they feel they have a fresh start and have resolved to play well – for a while.

  3. Male opponents with recent tattoos are more likely to…

    (a) Raise recklessly;

    (b) Bluff;

    (c) Come into pots with weak hands;

    (d) All of the above.

    Answer: (d) Although there are exceptions, most male opponents with recent tattoos are likely to raise recklessly, bluff, and enter pots with weak hands. Tattoos indicate a more lively, and often more reckless, personality.

  4. You should be more eager to buy coffee for the player on your right…

    (a) true;

    (b) false.

    Answer: (b) It’s false that you should be more eager to buy coffee for the player on your right. It’s the player on your left, who holds a positional advantage over you, that you especially want to make friends with. This might make him or her less likely to leverage that advantage.

  5. What’s the main advantage of having a wild and carefree image?

    (a) you’ll be able to bluff more successfully;

    (b) you’ll be able to refuse to give loans more convincingly;

    (c) you’ll get called more often when you hold big hands;

    (d) all of the above.

    Answer: (c) The main advantage of a wild and carefree image is that you’ll get called more often when you hold big hands.

  6. Most winning players go on tilt sometimes.

    (a) True;

    (b) False.

    Answer: (a) It’s true that most winning players go on tilt (loose their discipline) sometimes. Winning players, though, tend to go on tilt less than average players; and a few of the best world-class players seldom or never go on tilt.

  7. Irritating your opponents by criticizing their play increases your chances of…

    (a) winning money from them over the years;

    (b) getting them to come into your future pots with weak hands;

    (c) play worse against you;

    (d) none of the above.

    Answer: (d) Irritating your opponents by criticizing their play doesn’t increase your chances of winning their money in the long run. It doesn’t usually get them to come into your future pots with weak hands. And – except for possibly a play or two — it doesn’t cause them to play worse against you overall. Instead, it usually gives them resolve to play better. In fact, the tactic of irritating your opponents through criticism is much more likely to harm you than help you.

  8. (Choose best answer) If your opponents are bickering among themselves and distracted, it’s a poor time to…

    (a) Play a weak hand for advertising purposes;

    (b) Bluff;

    (c) Take a bathroom break;

    (d) Go all-in if you’re playing no-limit.

    Answer: (a) If your opponents are bickering among themselves and distracted, it’s a poor time to play a weak hand for advertising purposes. They aren’t paying attention.

  9. It’s dangerous when you lose a lot more than you expected was probable, because you stop caring about making good decisions — and losing even more money doesn’t make you feel much worse.

    (a) True;

    (b) False.

    Answer: (a) It’s true – and the concept is Caro’s Threshold of Misery – that you can be in danger when you lose much more than you thought likely, because losing still more doesn’t make you feel much worse than you already do.

  10. If you present a solid, tight, stable image, which of the following is an advantage?

    (a) you’ll have less fluctuation in your day-to-day earnings;

    (b) you’ll get a lot more calls with big hands;

    (c) you’ll be competing for bigger pots, on average;

    (d) all above and more are advantages — there are no disadvantages to a solid, tight, stable image.

    Answer: (a) If you present a solid, tight, stable image, you’ll have less fluctuation in your day-to-day earnings over time.


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2 Responses to
Targeted poker quiz 30: Psychology (advanced)
 

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  • Mike,

    It’s a whole lot easier to find an error than to know what to do, so my apologies for the correction, but on answer #8, you labled the answer (a), as “b” instead (typo). You are invaluable.

    • Thanks, Rene —

      I fixed that glitch. Since there’s so much imported content, translated from other places, there almost certainly remain many glitches to be hunted down at the new Poker1.

      I greatly appreciate help in finding these problems. I have credited you in the change log (linked to from the home page).

      And thanks for making your first comment and joining our Poker1 family!

      Straight Flushes,
      Mike Caro

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