I have no self-control. Luckily, I know this about myself. This allows me to consciously engineer my life so that despite having the emotional maturity of a heroin-addicted lab rat, I’m occasionally able to get things done. Mm, a waste of time! I waste a lot of time on Reddit. If I want to procrastinate on something, I’ll often open a new tab and dive down a Reddit-hole. But sometimes...
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I was originally planning to write this post reflecting on 2016 and my year-end donations (I know, better late than never). But given the political climate in the U.S. right now, I’m feeling pretty shaken. I don’t usually write about politics, but I decided I needed to share a few thoughts. [video] First, donations. [Note: for those who don’t know my background; I am an effective altruist, and I earn-to-give....
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I just came home from a vow of silence at a meditation center in northern California. It’s a strange feeling coming back to city life after five days of silent meditation. Looking around at puffing joggers, Christmas wreaths, eager couples waiting outside restaurants, the stop and start of traffic—it’s almost too much for my senses. The last time I took a vow of silence was 5 years ago. It lasted...
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(Note: this is the second part of this story. You can read the first part here.) Despite the rejection from 23AndMe, I kept pushing. I applied to the all the big hiring websites. Hired rejected me from their platform. I got no bites anywhere on AngelList or LinkedIn—not even cold e-mails from recruiters. Nothing from WhiteTruffle or SmartHires. Not a breath of interest anywhere. [video] I kept on. I asked...
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A couple weeks ago I had my last day as Director of Product at App Academy. This coming Monday, I will be starting work as a software engineer at Airbnb. Here’s the story of why I left App Academy, the tribulations of my ensuing job search, and why I decided to join Airbnb. [video] Disclaimer: in this blog post and the next, I'll be speaking frankly about compensation packages I...
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2015 has come to a close and I’ve just finished my first year’s donations. In all I gave 33% of my pre-tax income, which since I started my job in June, amounts to $21,200 USD I donated to high-impact charities. [video] Donations I donated $5,300 to AMF, the Against Malaria Foundation, which distributes low-cost anti-mosquito bednets in parts of Africa that are ravaged by malaria. AMF is ranked by Givewell...
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EA Global, the largest ever public gathering of EAs, has left me reflecting on what it means to be an effective altruist. A few weeks ago, 400+ attendees and prominent EA activists, including Will MacAskill and Nick Bostrom (and Elon Musk!), converged on a Google Campus in Mountain View to discuss the state and direction of the EA movement. I ended up donning a volunteer shirt and helping out—time-keeping for...
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It’s officially official. At week 8 into my 12 week coding bootcamp, I was whisked into a room with Ned Ruggeri, the co-founder of App Academy. He sat me down and told me that I was the top student in my cohort (40~ students), and asked that I come on as an instructor and help teach the bootcamp. With the position comes a competitive package, the opportunity to teach others...
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It’s been two weeks now since I began the coding bootcamp at App Academy. The material has been blasted at us at a breakneck pace, and I’ve been learning a ton. Among the things I’ve learned: what “90 hours a week” feels like. The past 5 days, I’ve been at App Academy from 10AM till midnight, every single day. It’s strange; it feels like just a few days ago that...
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A new stage in my life began four days ago. I got out of a taxi on 7th and Market Street, with all of my belongings stuffed into a backpack and one suitcase. To my left, homeless men were peddling their wares and accosting passersby, and on my right, I could see the dizzying buildings packed with San Francisco’s most promising startups. I’ve never lived in a city like this...
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It’s been almost four years now since I retired from professional poker. I haven’t played a single hand of poker since then. I’ve written a lot about poker, I’ve coached a lot of poker players, but the game itself is long behind me. So what comes next? Ever since I quit, that question has hung over me. What do I do with my life? As a poker player it was...
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Diogenes of Sinope was the father of Cynicism, an ancient school of ascetic philosophy. It’s easy to talk abstractly though. I like to imagine him: tattered clothes, tangled beard, a scraggly old man. In Athens, Diogenes was known unaffectionately as “the Dog.” He lived in a discarded wine tub, which he kept out in the marketplace. He possessed nothing more than his staff and cloak. He once had a wooden...
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Apr 2014

I am sitting on a porch, and next to me is an old man—grayed hair, sun-beaten skin—rocking back and forth in his chair. That man is me. That is, he’s the old man I will one day be. He is looking off in the distance, smiling. Why is he smiling? Because he’s lived a full life. I can’t even imagine how much more he knows than I do. All of...
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Apr 2014

Hey gang, Wanted to feature a really in-depth interview I did on Quoracast with my old friend Jeff Meyerson (also known as Crablar back in the day). We discuss in detail my early poker years, living with Dan “Jungleman12” Cates and Ashton “ASHMAN103″ Griffin, and the infamous Million Dollar Bet. Give it a listen, and subscribe to Quoracast if you enjoy it! Link to part 1 of the interview Link...
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Today I’ve edited and cleaned up a post that I wrote many years ago. Back then, I was a solid 3/6 6-max grinder. I was the biggest winner on the PokerStars 6-max games and put in tons of volume, but I could never move up to 5/10. Every time I tried, I’d get smashed and would return to 3/6 to retool my coffers and try again. This was really disheartening,...
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I made my final donation yesterday. The $75,000 is now all accounted for. I sent $20,000 to charity: water for building water wells in rural Pakistan, and $15,000 to GiveDirectly (matched by another $15,000 by Good Ventures), which will be distributed through Kenya and Uganda. I’ll be updating the original post where I announce I’m starting over with more information and the receipts once I get them. The print edition...
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(For those of you who don’t know what’s going on with me right now, read this post first.) Christmas has come and gone. It’s never been a big day for me and my family. We don’t celebrate Christmas. So mostly Christmas is a day when everything is closed, my friends are busy, and everything is dim and quiet. For me, it’s a lonely time of year. Two days before Christmas,...
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So I’m starting over. I’ve decided to give away all of my money. Two years after retiring from poker, I have left about half a million dollars. I’m giving some of it to charity, and the rest to my family to go toward my parents’ retirement. I’m leaving myself $10,000 to live off—you know, in case I’m an idiot and everything goes horribly wrong. Oh, and I just finished the...
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It’s fall now, and just starting to get cold in Texas. I haven’t written in a while. The book, The Philosophy of Poker, I will collate and edit from the pieces written on this blog. I’ll release it within the next couple of months as an e-book. There will be extensive editing, some additional material I’ve thought of in the interim while writing the book, and some revisions of ideas...
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Oct 2013

I don’t tell people these days that I used to be a professional poker player. It seems like a weighty and cumbersome admission, one that always leads to the same tired conversation. The last time I played a hand of poker was well over a year ago. That life feels like an episode long behind me—an identity I’ve left behind. And yet sometimes, in my dreams, I find myself playing...
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The embryo of this post has been sitting on my desk for several weeks now. Originally, it was a frenzy of thoughts that I scribbled purely for myself, just to flush the words out. But after seeing it on my desk day after day, I finally decided to post it here. I apologize if this seems self-indulgent, but it seems to me the right thing to do. Several weeks ago...
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Hey everyone, Sorry for being slow to update this blog. It’s somewhat lame of me, I know, but I’ve been tremendously busy this last month. I was slogging through finals and finally finished this first semester, was working through the month of free mental coaching, and a slew of other things in my personal life – I started working with Habitat for Humanity (it’s a volunteer construction gig, which is...
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Hello friends, It has been a long time since I’ve written. Too long really, though perhaps it has taken me this long for good reason. It still surprises me that people occasionally e-mail me, asking what I’m up to and why I’m not writing in this blog anymore. Apparently my story is meaningful to people, which in the back of my mind I find difficult to comprehend. But for my...
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Despite my promise to write once I got out, I have been silent on this blog for a month now. In fact, it’s probably been about a month since I haven’t hated any word of mine that has touched a page. For those who are wondering what I’ve been up to—since the vow of silence I spent a few days in London and then finally flew back to Austin on...
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Dec 2011

I wasn’t sure that I was going to come here. I had toyed with the idea my mind many times, but I was never sure what to do. It wasn’t until working on the farm in France that I finally made the decision. But I think all along somewhere in my journey, there was some invisible string that tied me to Portugal. And though I swung around in my arc...
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It is now my last night here. I have been volunteering on this farm in the south of France for a little over two weeks, but tonight I had to say goodbye to a landscape that is now so familiar to me. Since I got here, once every night I take a long walk along the winding road leading to the farm. There are no streetlights. You can usually see...
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Oct 2011

I used to have a running joke with my students. Whenever I would checkraise a flop against an opponent they would ask me, “Hey Dog, why are you checkraising here?” And I would always answer, “because fuck him, that’s why.” Halfhearted chuckles all around, and then I would explain the logic behind my checkraise. Well today somebody asked me why in the hell I’m working on a farm in Europe....
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Oct 2011

Yesterday morning I just left Ljubljana, where I was living for over a week. It has probably been my favorite city thus far. The people there are so friendly, the food is so great, the pace of life is just so relaxed and wonderful…There’s so much I could say about this place. But for once I’ll let the photos do the talking. The hostel I was staying in, Hostel Celica,...
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Oct 2011

I’ve been procrastinating on writing this entry. At one point I started writing, but I found myself avoiding the very topic that I intended to write about. Actually, I could write a lot about the experiences I’ve had in Padua and Vicenze—about almost getting mugged when I came into Padua, about meeting a group of girls and joining their private graduation party, about a med student who tried to convince...
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Oct 2011

I have just left Venice. It is, without a doubt, the most beautiful city I’ve been to. It is also my least favorite city I’ve been to. Venice exhausts me. I originally planned to stay longer, but I couldn’t stand it. In the day, Venice is overcrowded with tourists. At any given time, more than 60% of the people in Venice are tourists, and almost all of the rest of...
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Sep 2011

Hey guys, There’s so much I could write, but I’m not ready to write it yet. I have spent quite some time now in Croatia. It’s a fucking beautiful country. This entry will purely be photographs of the beautiful Croatia. Along with a badass song for accompaniment. [video] The harbor in Split. Down a dark alleyway near the center of Split. An open-air salsa dance in the center of Split....
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Sep 2011

Hey guys, As I’m writing this I’ve just arrived in Budapest, Hungary. It’s a beautiful city, and over the next few days I’m going to be exploring it as much as I can. But the subject of this blog post is not going to be on my travels. Over the last couple of weeks I have been thinking quite a bit about my career as a poker player – what...
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Hey all, I am now in the Czech Republic and have met up with some of my friends. It’s been fun hanging out with them again, but the first few days in the Czech Republic by myself were pretty interesting. While I was in Cologne, I spent my nights in cheap hotels. I wandered around the city looking for hostels but couldn’t find any, so I just settled on hotels....
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It’s taken me some days to write again since I’ve been pretty occupied while I was in Berlin. I stayed there with my good friend Fredrik Keitel (aka Fisheye, observer84), he was very generous with letting me stay on his couch and showing me the city. Berlin is a pretty cool place. Greener than just about any other city I’ve visited considering its size. It also has the strange habit...
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I’ve just now gotten internet access again since when I posted my last blog entry. Cologne is an interesting and beautiful city (although I’ve met a few locals who seem to think it’s a boring place… but I guess that’s true of everywhere to the people who are used to it). I visited the Dom cathedral, the Roman-Rhineland Museum, and walked along the Rhine river for several miles. My feet...
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I’ve been having these recurring dreams lately. In these dreams I am a child again, and I am causing trouble against authority figures for no real reason. I’ve never been a big fan of dream analysis, but it’s been on my mind. Maybe it’s my psyche trying to tell me that this little exodus, this attempt to rebel against what by now is my nature, is pointless and childlike. Maybe...
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My travels have begun. The day before yesterday I took the Eurostar (underground train) from London into Paris. I’ve never been on such a train before. I watched the landscape of the rural north of France rushing by outside the window. There is something very beautiful and nostalgic to me about riding in a train or a bus. It’s hard to put my finger on it exactly, but something about...
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Aug 2011

I just wanted to mention and link this here, because I think it’s responsible to do so. This will be my last time engaging the poker world. From my previous blog: At this point, all of the truths have come to light. I am only updating this blog so that everything is in one place. For those of you who have not read it, I have come forward on HSNL...
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I’ve finally gotten a full night’s sleep again. The night after I posted my last blog entry, my mind was restless thinking about all of the hatred that people would have for me.  Jungle went out to meet up with some fellow high stakes players who also wanted to see me and grab dinner together, but I told them that I wasn’t feeling well. I kept waking up in the...
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This is a post. I will write more when more stuff happens. I don’t know my plans yet or where I am going to go, but for those of you who wish to contact or meet me, I am reachable at haseebonroad at gmail dot com. Once I decide what exactly my plans are, I will write more. Right now the first thing I could use is tips on backpacking....
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