(n phrase) The jack of hearts. May have come from a knight of the court of King Charles VII of France. See Charles.
(n phrase) A form of widow game, a variant of Cincinnati, found only in home games, in which each player is dealt five downcards, as in draw, followed by a betting round, and then five cards are turned face up one at a time, with each followed by another betting round, the difference from Cincinnati being that the lowest card in the widow and any others of the same rank are wild. Each player makes the best hand possible by using any combination from his five and the five in the middle.
(n) 1. A special chip given to the winner of a satellite tournament, to be used as a complete or partial entry or buy-in to a larger tournament. The chip can be used only to buy in to a tournament, but can be sold to another player for this purpose. For example, a supersatellite at the World Series of Poker might award three lammers each worth $500. The winner might use those three lammers to buy in to a $1500 tournament, or collect two more and use them for a $2500 tournament. The term originally came from the chip-shaped markers used in other table games, such as craps, where they might indicate, for example, "on" or "off." The name probably came from these chips being made of laminated plastic. 2. The marker chip that a chip runner (or other floor person) leaves in the tray of a house dealer at a poker table when taking cash out of the dealer's tray, for which the runner will return with chips.
(n phrase) See pumpa.
(n phrase) 1. A betting scheme, used only in home games, in which the betting on one round begins with the player who initiated the betting on the previous round (if there was no raise), or with the player who put in the last raise that was called around. In stud games, the actual boards of the players have no relevance. If there was no betting on the previous round, then it goes back to the last bet of the round before. For example, in a stud game, after the first upcard, John, under the gun, makes the forced high-card bet, showing an ace. Two players call, and Bill raises, showing a queen. One player calls behind, as do John and the other two players. On the next card, John has A-K and Bill has Q-J. Bill, having put in the last raise, bets first. All call. Bill is again first on the next round. 2. In a hand featuring bets with multiple raises, the last raise on a particular round. "The live one put in the last bet every round and caught runner-runner spades." This means that the player in question raised every round, perhaps putting in the third or fourth bet.
(n phrase) 1. Last to act in a particular round. 2. The card farthest from the door (front position) when the cards are held squeezed together. "How come the free peek is always in last position?"
last to act
(n phrase) The player who acts last in a particular round. In a button game, this might be the dealer or, on the first round, the holder of the big blind. In a seven-card stud game, this is the player to the right of the high hand.
(n phrase) An appearance of shuffling the cards by a cheat, done by partial or complete concealment of the deck, but without actually changing their order (from a presumably set-up arrangement), by pulling one half of the pack through the other half, and then replacing the deck to its original position. Ironically, a concealed shuffle is not permitted anywhere in Nevada. Also called false shuffle or fast shuffle.
Las Vegas shuffle
(n phrase) Las Vegas riffle.
(n phrase) In a poker game, positions to the right of the dealer, that is, those that make their decisions after the first few players have acted. Late position is advantageous, because players get to see what the other players have done before they have to act, that is, they have more information than those who act before they do. Some claim late position, in a game with eight or more players, is the last three positions. Compare with early position. Sometimes called back seat.
laws of poker
(n phrase) rules of poker.
(n) 1. The act of folding; often implies folding a good hand for a bet because the holder of the hand thinks it cannot win in the circumstances. "Good laydown" is a phrase often offered as a compliment to a player who correctly folded in a situation in which most players would have called. 2. showdown (definition 1). He was out before the laydown.
(v phrase) 1. Fold. "If you bet, I'm gonna lay down." Sometimes called soup, when part of the expression soup a hand. 2. show down (one's cards). 3. Buy in (to a game).
lay the odds
(v phrase) To wager more money on a proposition or situation than you can win. This does not necessarily mean you have the worst of it; it just means you're putting up more than the other wagerer. For example, if the odds are 4-to-1 against a particular event, and you lay the odds of 3-to-1 against someone, you have the best of it.
(n phrase) Tahoe pineapple.
1. (n) Flaw (in one's play). "I can't win; there must be a leak in my play." 2. The tendency of an otherwise winning player to lose his money at other forms of betting, such as the craps table or sports betting. 3. (v) Flash part of a hand. To leak your hand is to unknowingly expose one or more cards.
leak a hand
(v phrase) See leak (definition 3).
(v phrase) put air into.
(v, adv phrase) Same as winner blind; often preceded by winner, as winner leave it. That is, the winner of a pot blinds the next pot. "We're playing leave it" might be said to a player just sitting down at a table, to inform that player that the rest of them are playing higher than the nominal size of the game.
(n phrase) An amount that constitutes a raise of a full bet, having various interpretations, depending on the club. In a limit game, in some cardrooms, a legal raise must equal the limit (for example, a $10 bet must be raised $10; $9 does not constitute a legal raise); in others, half a bet constitutes a legal raise. The rules are even muddier in no-limit games. Also see full bet, half a bet.
(n phrase) In a kill game, describing the situation in which a player has won the previous pot, and is thus liable to have to kill the following pot if he wins the current pot.
(n phrase) Anything picked up in a pot without trying, usually the blinds, often as the result of a walk, or, sometimes, more specifically, by none of the blinds calling when someone opens.
Let It Ride
(n phrase) A casino game, banked by the house, that resembles poker only in the ranking of the hands. The game is sort of a cross between poker and a slot machine. Players make three bets before receiving their cards, after which each player is dealt three cards, and the house dealer places two cards face down to be used as community cards. After looking at their three cards, players can opt to take back one bet, or let it ride. The dealer turns up one of the community cards, and players can take back the second bet or again let it ride. At this point, the dealer turns up the remaining community card, and pays all winning hands according to a fixed payout schedule, starting with a pair of 10s. Players play against the payout schedule rather than against the dealer or any other player. The game is played on a seven-seat table, similar to a blackjack table.
1. (adv) Short of the complete bet. "He's light by $20." Also called shy. Also see lights. 2. Not having anted. "Who's light?" means "Who forgot to ante?" 3. (v) Sit down. "Light and fight."
(n) In a home game, a situation that comes up when a player is light (definition 1). In some home games, not played for table stakes, when a player does not have enough chips to continue betting in a pot, that player withdraws chips from the pot equal to the amount of the betting beyond his chips, (usually) stacking them neatly in front of him. These are called lights. (To so withdraw chips is called go light.) At the end of the hand, if the player does not win the pot, he buys enough chips to cover his lights. He then matches his lights, that is, puts the lights into the pot plus an equivalent amount of chips from the ones he has just bought. For example, in a stud game, Jill starts with $16. After the sixth card, she has $2 left. The high hand bets $4. She puts her last $2 in the pot, and pulls $2 from the pot, and stacks it in front of her. At this point, she might say, "I'm light," or, "I'm going light." On the last round, someone bets $4 and someone calls. She pulls another $4 from the pot, adding it to her pile of lights. On the showdown, she finds that her three 7s are beat by a small straight. She buys another $50 worth of chips from the banker, adds $6 to her lights, and puts the $12 in the pot. At this point, the winner takes the whole pot. In a split (two-way) pot, if both the winner of the high half and the winner of the low half have lights, they exchange lights. This is equivalent to each first matching lights, and then splitting the pot, and saves time.
(n phrase) Markings put on a deck with very fine lines. See marked cards.
(n) 1. The size of the betting increments in a limit game. This will seem obvious to most, but the limit in a $2-limit game is $2. Also called betting limit. 2. limit poker. "I prefer limit to no-limit." 3. "The limit" is an expression used by draw poker players at the time of the draw referring to how many cards they wish. In high, the expression "Give me the limit" means "Give me three cards"; in lowball, "Give me one card." So called, because "the book" supposedly says that good draw poker players take no more than three cards and good lowball players take no more than one.
(n phrase) limit poker, or, more specifically, an instance of a game played with limit stakes.
(n phrase) A form of poker in which all bets are in increments of the betting limit. That is, in a $2-limit game, players can bet or raise only $2 at a time. Limit poker is usually played double limit (also known as Gardena-style), in which the betting increments double after the draw, or single limit (also known as straight limit), in which all bets are in multiples of the limit. In double-limit, the size of the game is usually expressed as two numbers, as, variously, 3/6, 3-6, $3/$6, $3-$6, 5/10, and so on, while in single-limit, one number, as $2-limit (also called the two-limit, the two, or the deuce) or $80-limit.
(n phrase) limit poker.
1. (v) Open for the limit in a structured limit game, as opposed to coming in for a raise. If someone in a 20-40 hold 'em says, "I'll limp," it means he opens for $20. 1. (n) The act of limping. "There were three limps to me."
(v phrase) limp in (definition 2).
(v) One who has opened for the limit in a structured limit game, as opposed to coming in for a raise, or just called such a bet. "There were three limpers when it got to me, so naturally I raised with my suited ace-king."
(v phrase) 1. limp. 2. In a no-limit game, just barely call, that is, not raise when one could, and even seem to call reluctantly; sometimes done with a good hand for the purpose of deception. However, when a player says, "I'll limp in," he usually does have a weak hand.
(n) A circle (or an oval on some tables) inside of which is considered to be the domain of the pot, with respect to determining whether or not a player must be forced to complete a bet. The line is either real, in which case it is actually drawn on the table (usually in white or black paint or ink) or imaginary; even if imaginary, it exists, and its existence is sometimes strictly enforced in games. The line defines the perimeter of the pot. Same as circle. "That bet has to stay; it was over the line."
(n phrase) Spots, lines, curlicues, put on a deck by a cheater so that the cards can be read from the back. See marked cards.
(n phrase) 1. In a three-blind traveling blind game, the blind put up by the dealer. Also see middle blind, dealer blind, big blind. 2. In an under-the-gun blind game with two blinds, the blind to the left of the dealer.
(n phrase) A nonstandard hand sometimes given value in a private or home game, five cards containing a three-card straight flush, for example, Q 9 5 4 3. Often ranks between two pair and three of a kind.
(n phrase) The 2 of spades, from the game of casino. The other card that got its name from the same game is big casino.
(n phrase) A nonstandard hand sometimes given value in a private or home game, five cards 3 to 9 with no pair (in some circles, 3 to 8 with no pair), ranks above a big dog, and below a big tiger. Also called little tiger.
(n phrase) A nonstandard hand sometimes given value in a private or home game, five cards 2 to 7 with no pair, ranks below a big dog and above a straight.
(n phrase) little wheel.
(n phrase) In hold 'em, 8-8 as one's first two cards. See Oldsmobile.
(n phrase) In hold 'em, A-2 or A-Q as one's first two cards. Compare with big slick.
(n phrase) A form of five-card stud, found only in home games, a high-low game in which, after each player has been dealt one downcard and four upcards, each player has the option of replacing one of those cards. (The act of replacing a card is sometimes called the twist, so this game's alternative name is also its description: five-card high-low stud with a twist.) An upcard is replaced with an upcard, and a downcard with a downcard, followed by one more round of betting. Also called five-card option.
(n phrase) little cat.
1. (adj) Not playing house chips. "All the players in the game are live." 2. Full of action. "This is a pretty live game." 3. (adj, adv) Full of gamble (with the implication of foolishly so). "He's playing too live." 4. Pertaining to a hand that has not yet been folded. 5. Pertaining to cards that are part of an active player's hand, or part of those being dealt to him as his draw. 6. Pertaining to cards that are available to be drawn, that is cards that have not yet been dealt, or at least not seen. In stud, this might be cards a player needs to make a hand that have not been exposed; in draw, this might be cards a player needs and he knows his opponent or opponents do not have in their hands. "I had four spades on fifth street, and spades were live" means that on this seven-card stud hand none (or few) spades were among the visible upcards. See live hand (definition 2). 7. Pertaining to a legitimate (as opposed to foul) hand. 8. Part of the phrase draw live; sometimes followed by to when referring to the other hand.
(n phrase) 1. In double-limit draw (usually lowball) games, or almost any hold 'em or Omaha game, a blind that can be raised even when the opening bet is not a raise. For example, in a single-blind 2-4 draw game, the player to the dealer's left puts $2 in the pot before receiving his cards, while in a 2-4 hold 'em or Omaha game, the player to the left of the dealer puts in $1 and the player to his left puts in $2. The first player to open in a draw game usually opens for $4, and in the hold 'em and Omaha games sometimes does, that is, by raising, but not always. In a live blind game, if the pot is opened for $2 and no one raises, when the action returns to the $2 blind, he has the option of raising. 2. A blind a player gets to keep when he wins a pot, because the next pot will be blinded by someone other than the winner of the present pot. Examples of live blinds are those in a traveling blind game, or those in a game in which each player must blind the pot at least once within a specified period of time. Compare with dead blind.
(n phrase) See live (definition 6).
(n phrase) Chips belonging to an active player, that is, not being played for the establishment (which includes those belonging to a dealer while he is working, to a shill, a stake, or even proposition player), as opposed to house chips.
(n phrase) 1. One with no house players, as opposed to a dead game. 2. A ring game, as opposed to a tournament game, because the game is played with chips having actual cash value, instead of tournament chips.
(n phrase) 1. A hand that is still eligible to win the pot (that is, one that is not dead, definition 3). 2. In seven-card stud, a hand for which many of the cards that would improve it are still available, that is, not visible on the board and likely not among the downcards. See live (definition 6).
(n phrase) 1. A very loose player, usually implying one who loses; a rich sucker. When a player gets up, before the remaining players find out whom the house is sending to replace him, the table clown may say, "Send us a live one." Also fish, pigeon, sometimes sucker. 2. live player.
(adv phrase) Having a great hand, usually one that has been passed; often said of a sandbagger.
(n phrase) One who lends money, particularly to gamblers, at rates of interest far in excess of those charged by any bank or even any credit card, with 30% per week and more not being uncommon. Such a person often enforces repayment with threats of physical punishment--and sometimes follows through on the threat, as warning to other malingerers, when payment is late. Also called shylock.
(n) loan shark.
(n) A variant--and now, according to the official list published by Card Player, improper--spelling for lowball. Also, just as improperly, lo-ball and lo ball.
(n phrase) Winnings. "He's got lobbying chips" means, simply, "He's winning." So called because generally winners lobby, not losers. The losers have to concentrate on playing to get even; the winners can afford to relax and sit out a few hands. Also called talking chips.
(n) Someone who lives in Las Vegas (and "lives" in the poker games), as contrasted to a tourist.
local option hands
(n) 1. In lowball, a hand that cannot lose. If the player with a lock is first to bet, he likely has a wheel; if the other players pass to him, in a game with the sevens rule, he has a 7 or better. 2. In any other form of poker, a hand that cannot lose in a given situation. Also called immortal, mortal cinch, cinch hand, or cinch.
(adv phrase) locked up (definition 1).
(adv phrase) 1. Pertaining to chips residing in the stack of a very tight player, and thus difficult for any other player to win. "You're not going to win any of those chips back; he's got them locked up." Also, locked down. 2. Reserved, with respect to a seat at a table. For example, a new player (new to the game) starts to sit down at what appears to be the only empty seat at the table. Emilie says, "You can't have that seat; I've got it locked up. I just have to play off the blind and I'll move."
(n phrase) A locksmith.
(n) One who plays only the nuts (usually used in a derisive sense).
1. (v phrase) Reserve or save (a seat). "Lock up a seat in the 6-12 for me." Also see lock it up.
(n) 1. A freak hand, often five specific, but random, cards, allowed to win once a night; generally the punch line in an elaborate shaggy dog poker story. Spelled variantly lalapalooza, lalapalooze, and lallapalooza, and sometimes called looloo. 2. The nuts.
(n phrase) A form of lowball stud poker, played in England, in which the ace is low, but straights and flushes count against the player as in deuce-to-seven lowball, so the best hand is 6-4-3-2-ace.
London lowball draw
(n phrase) A form of lowball draw, played in England, in which the ace is low, but straights and flushes count against the player as in deuce-to-seven lowball, so the best hand is 6-4-3-2-ace. The game is sometimes played with two draws (instead of the one in conventional lowball).
1. (v) Call, especially the final bet or raise before the showdown; often followed by at. If someone bets at you and you say, "I'll look," that means, "I'll call you." "I'll look at you" means the same. In most cardrooms, saying "I'll look" is not equivalent to saying "I call." The latter is usually binding, that is, if you say "I call" when it is your turn to act, you must put chips in the pot, even if the other player shows his cards before you have a chance to physically get them in. (It's usually a good idea, however, unless you know the other player very well, to wait until the chips are actually in the pot before showing your cards, even in establishments in which verbal declarations are binding. Saves arguments later.) "I'll look" is generally a phrase said accompanying the actual act of placing the calling chips in the pot, and is generally not binding (although it could be interpreted that way: another reason to be careful of what you say in turn). In this sense, see [the or your bet] is also frequently used. 2. (n) Part of the phrase free look. 3. Part of the phrase look [someone] up.
look at one
(v phrase) In lowball, a proposition sometimes offered when one player draws one card and the other two. The player drawing the two cards will look at one of his cards (only) and bet if the other player will raise blind, or sometimes even if the other player doesn't offer to do anything at all beyond look at his own cards.
look at two
1. (v phrase) In lowball, look at two cards (usually the first two dealt), with the implication of then killing (overblinding) the pot, "I'll look at two" often means "I'll look at my first two cards and if I like them I'll kill the pot." 2. (n phrase) Describing a lowball game in which players are allowed to overblind after seeing their first two cards. "We're playing look at two." "This game is look at two."
looking down [someone's] throat
(v phrase) Being in a situation in which you know you have a hand your opponent cannot possibly beat. This implies that the other player has good cards showing on the board (in seven-card stud), at which you are presumably looking, and still you know you will win.
looking out the window
(v phrase) Describing a player who is not paying attention to the game or the action, often used in a situation in which you would very much appreciate if the player would take a great interest in the current hand. "Wouldn't ya know it? I get dealt a pat wheel and everybody's looking out the window."
(adj, adv) Playing liberally; not tight. In high draw, usually implies drawing to all the little pairs, all the four-straights and four-flushes, and many of the two-card draws to other than trips, and often calling many bets and raises to do so. In lowball, implies taking all the one-card draws to rough hands (that is hands that frequently lose even when they are made perfectly), and most of the two-card draws. In hold 'em, playing almost any two-card starting combination, and playing through to the river on almost anything that has a prayer of winning. In seven-card stud, the same with almost any three-card starting combination, and staying in until the situation is hopeless. You often hear the rhyming phrase loose as a goose or loosey-goosey.
(n phrase) One who plays loose.
(n) A loose player.
(n) 1. A losing player. 2. A player losing. (There is a distinction. Definition 2 may be just a temporary situation, while 1 implies permanency.) "I'm loser today." (The implication here is that, yes, today I'm losing, but that will change.) 3. A losing session. "I booked a loser my last three plays." 4. A hand that cannot (or probably cannot) win in a particular situation. "I can't call; I know this straight is a loser."
1. (n) In a high-low split game, the low hand; usually preceded by the. "Who's got the low?" means "Which player has the winning low hand?" 2. (adv, adj) Describing lowball. "They're playing low." 3. In a high-low split game, holding the hand that wins the low half of the pot; descriptive of the low hand; sometimes preceded by go or going. 4. In a stud game, having the lowest card or combination of cards showing on the board; of importance because sometimes on the first round, the holder of the low card must initiate the betting. 5. Holding the worst hand at the showdown in a high game. 6. Holding the best hand at the showdown in a low game.
(n) 1. A form of five-card draw poker in which the lowest hand wins. The two most popular forms of the game are ace-to-five and deuce-to-seven. 2. A wheel; usually preceded by a. "I've got a lowball."
(n phrase) lowball.
(n phrase) A mythical deity to whom lowball players supposedly pray for good hands, and who presumably protects those in his (her?) good graces; used humorously. Compare with poker god. Also, god of lowball.
(n phrase) razz.
(n phrase) A deck marked by shaving the sides of some cards (making the middles narrower than the ends) so that a thief can tell by feel the values of certain cards, usually certain high or low cards, such as the aces. Also see belly strippers, high belly strippers, end strippers, glazed card, humps, strippers.
(n phrase) A form of seven-card stud, found only in home games, in which the lowest card each player has in the hole (that is, face down) and all others of the same rank in that player's hand are wild.
(n phrase) See Mambo stud.
(n phrase) One who plays for small stakes. Compare with high roller.
1. (n phrase) 1. A side bet in which two or more players (usually in a draw or lowball game) agree that whoever has the lowest card in the spade suit on the next hand (or, if no one has a spade that hand, on the following hand or hands) wins something, usually a prearranged bet, or a free drink bought by the loser or losers. 2. (v phrase) To play for the low spade. "I'll low spade you for the drinks" means that if, for example, I get the seven of spades on the next hand and you get no spades or a spade higher than the seven, you're supposed to buy me a drink, if you agree to the proposition. Sometimes called just spade. For both meanings, compare with high spade.
low spade in the hole
(n phrase) A poker game played only in private or home games, a form of seven-card stud in which the pot is split between the holder of the highest hand and the holder of the lowest spade in the hole.
(n phrase) 1. low-stakes game. 2. The play in such a game or for such stakes.
(n phrase) 1. A game played for small stakes. Compare with high-stakes game. 2. The play in such a game or for such stakes.
(n phrase) See discussion at variance.
(n phrase) See discussion at variance.
(adj) Possessing luck. "I'd rather be lucky than good any day."
(n phrase) lucky draw.
(n phrase) readers.
(adv phrase) Bluffing. See bluff. "I think you're lying; I'm gonna call you."
lying in the bushes
(adv phrase) See weeds.
lying in the weeds
(adv phrase) See weeds.
Entire contents copyright (©) 2003, Michael Wiesenberg.