In An Ace on the River Barry Greenstein relates the story of an early trip to Vegas. He sat at an almost full but idle table of 7 Stud with a group of unfamiliar, to him, players. Before the first hand was dealt, a friend of Greenstein's pulled him aside and told him not to play at that table as it was full of some of the best stud players in town. Heeding his friend's advice, Greenstein got up to move to greener pastures. When they realized he was leaving, the other players told the dealer not to bother throwing out the cards. They would wait for the next "sucker" to sit down. These players had decided there was no need to waste time handing money back and forth. Better to wait for the one player who would donate to them all.
The Big Game is over for another week. One player dropping over 100 BB in less than five hours made for a mostly happy table. After playing for a few months, I have realized that there is no need to butt my head against the wall trying to extract blood from every player. One just needs to concentrate on the willing donors. This seems ruthlessly mercenary to me. Any potential conscience problems are salved by the fact the losses can be well absorbed by this individual. I know his business, know of his family, and am confident he is not struggling to pay his mortgage. A loss of that size would knock me out for a while as I would have to scramble to re-fund my bankroll . For this player though, the losses are met with a curse, then a shrug, and a "See you next week. Better get ready. The price of poker will be going up." I just keep my mouth shut and head down, betting my hands and knowing the calls will be coming. The money means something to me. Baby needs a new pair of shoes. Literally.