Thursday, 23 December 2010

No Crib for a Bed

Last night we were lucky enough to be invited to stay for supper with some great friends following the annual Oakley Court carol service.  After eating we were casually invited to play some cards.  Fabulous.  The crib board was produced and the games began.  I took an absolute drubbing - not helped by playing against a Jedi Crib Master - "these are not the cards you're looking for".

Humiliated and dejected I decided to take on my iphone to claw back some self respect.  During this first game, I was taking the lead and feeling very confident and then I was presented with this hand.

So obviously I could sit and work out the mathematical possibilities and the appropriate probability distribution but I was taking a, ahem, 10 minute break and so I made a snap decision.  I would discard the 4 and the 3 since the resulting hand was worth 14 in its own right.

Blast, who'd've thought it, I should have kept the 4 and the 3.  This meant that my hand is now still only worth 14 but if I'd thrown the 10 and a 5 into my crib I'd have had a hand worth 18 and a stronger seeded crib.

Adding insult to injury my crib was only worth 4 points but had I have thrown in the 5 and 10, it would have been worth 8 making my total score 26, a full 10 points more than my actual score of 16.  I guess an implicit, Jedi like understanding of probability is what one must develop to make the more likely (to succeed) selection, repeatedly.  Still I beat the iPhone - scant satisfaction though, as I know deep down that Master Sandy would have punished the choice mercilessly.  I'll lay down my sweet head......

1 comment:

  1. One of the things you have to learn when you play poker is to stick to the probabilities. You always remember the time when you folded before the flop only to see the (extremely unlikely) perfect set of cards to make your hand. What you DON'T remember is all the times you folded and turned up a flop that had nothing helpful in it whatsoever. So the only solution is to have at least a vague feel for the probabilities and stick to them for your decision making (unless you're playing the person rather than the cards, that is, which is of course totally valid).