It’s poker night. You’ve come prepared with your secret stash of cash (that you think your girlfriend or wife have absolutely no clue exists), an almost perfect poker face, and just the right amount of liquid courage to get you through that same boring story your best friend tells every. single. poker. night.
Well gentlemen, as prepared as you may feel, there’s much more to poker than simply knowing the rules. You also have to be well versed in the unwritten etiquette of the game. So listen closely – following these simple tips may be the deciding factor in whether or not you’re invited to the next poker night.
Read The Room
There is a difference between playing high stakes poker at a swanky club in Vegas and setting up a casual game in your buddy’s dining room. When playing a casual game at home, bonding is more important than winning. Yes, we really said that. Save any ruthless poker tactics you have up your sleeve for Vegas. And don’t leave early if you do happen to win big – not cool.
While we are on the topic, poker is ultimately a game of people. Before it eventually evolved into the World Series of Poker, it was used by cowboys as a way to pass the time in Wild Western saloons. So entertain, joke around, and engage with each other. And most importantly, enjoy yourself!
Don’t Slow Down The Game
This is a big one. Although we obviously highly encourage socializing and bonding, don’t let too much banter get in the way of the reason you all got together in the first place. Taking five minutes to make every single table decision slows down the game and ultimately sucks all the fun out of it. Don’t be a funsuck.
We know our short list doesn’t embody every aspect of proper poker etiquette, but this should get you started. So next poker night, bring your cash and poker face, but don’t forget to bring a good attitude. And most importantly, bring a bottle or 2 of Lost Republic Bourbon for that much-needed liquid courage.