Top Pair Home Game Poker Podcast Ep. #363: The Tilt Boys

By Robbie Strazynski
September 18, 2020


Robbie and Bruce recap their home games, played both online and in person. Bruce lost two whole dollars(!), while Robbie’s Dad came back to the home game after a on over 6-month-long hiatus.

Two of poker’s legendary Tiltboys, Dave Lambert and Paul Swiencicki join the hosts for a wonderful interview about the history behind their home game, over 25 years of playing poker together, the many amazing stories they have to share, and a book that chronicled their adventures over the years. Other famous Tiltboys members include Phli Gordon, Rafe Furst, and Perry Friedman.

Finally, Bruce shares a funny One Outer detailing the perils of screen sharing while on Zoom for an online poker home game.

Time Stamps

00:07Synopsis Poker Notes Live mobile app ad
1:51How Ya Runnin?
2:06Israel going into a second lockdown, so Robbie’s getting as many home games in as possible before that happens.
3:13A special home game featuring the return of Robbie’s Dad, Dr. Joe, after 6+ months of no in-person home game play.
7:17Robbie’s winning streak was broken. However, while ending up a loser for the game, it could have been a lot worse!
11:43Shout out to former guest Tadas Peckaitis for writing a great mixed game article on 2-7 Triple Draw and to listener Naomi for her Facebook comment.
18:03Dedicating a little portion of the show to speak about the late, great Mike Sexton. Robbie wrote a tribute and Bruce shares some memories as well of interviewing Mike and reading his book, Life’s a Gamble.
24:17Bruce played in an online poker home game and lost a grand total of…. $2.
26:44Look Who We Found: An Interview with the Tiltboys!
26:20Dave “Diceboy” Lambert and Paul Swiencicki are two of the Tiltboys, and they join us for the show.
27:28Tiltboys members include big names like Phil Gordon, Rafe Furst, and Perry Friedman. Paul and Dave explain the moniker and what the group was all about.
30:25The Tiltboys have been playing throughout the pandemic with 100+ straight days of online home games.
31:10The Tiltboys design new card games all the time and with as many twists, turns, and rules as possible in order to get fellow players to tilt. Also, they attempt to introduce features that prevent players from knowing the optimal strategy, such that things stay as enjoyable as possible.
35:23Paul and Dave discuss the origins of the game and how the group initially formed and brought on new members. It originally started out with many of the group members having attended Stanford University.
38:04Paul tells the story of how he was first introduced into the Tiltboys group, way back in 1995. It happened while some members of the group were together in a poker room. He was a participant in a hilarious NBA game wager between the Lakers and Bulls, featuring Phil Gordon and Rafe Furst.
41:50Dave and Paul explain the concept of “implied tilt odds”.
48:20The Tiltboys group basically stayed in California and took trips to Las Vegas. They played golf every day and poker every night among themselves in a home game. They also primarily enjoy cash games rather than tournaments.
50:00Dave and Paul discuss the stakes the group has played for. A critical note of importance for a fun home game: keep the stakes low enough that people can always still afford their losses. Otherwise the losing players will leave the game and stop coming.
53:55Bruce talks about his love for the Tiltboys’ book. Paul and Dave explain what made the group decide to write the book in the first place.
57:08Dave ad Paul discuss the Tiltboys’ affiliation with the famous BARGE mixed games poker lover group.
1:00:40Paul and Dave remind listeners that a home game should always be about the enjoyment; not about the money.
1:01:51One Outer: Bruce talks about a funny situation with Zoom online poker and screen sharing.

tiltboys book



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Written By.

Robbie Strazynski

Robbie founded Cardplayerlifestyle.com in 2009. A veteran member of the poker media corps, in addition to writing and video presenting, Robbie has hosted multiple poker podcasts over the years, including Top Pair, the Red Chip Poker Podcast, The Orbit, and the CardsChat Podcast. In 2019, Robbie translated the autobiography of Poker Hall of Famer Eli […]

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