This is going to be a long post, lets start with a bio for those of you who still have no idea who this alpha dude with a terrible English accent is:
- born 1986 in the french countryside from a middle-class family.
- nothing worth noting for years, not too stupid at school, moved out of my parents home just before turning 18 to pursue scientific studies in the big city. Really intensive maths and physics training plus some chemistry and various minors for 2yrs, somehow managed to survive this. Started to specialize in chemistry in the 3rd year (so dont **** with me, I know at least half a dozen ways of blowing your car/house!).
- The story really starts in the spring of 2006 while still at school. I suffered a knee dislocation after a stupid accident and couldnt move much for a while so I spent the week of spring holidays with a childhood friend of mine who was doing some sportsbetting for pennies on unibet. There was a poker section and he tried some. He asked me so many times to play with him for fun that week (like 100 times a day every single day) that I finally surrendered. He had to teach me the rules because I literally didnt know anything at all about poker except for what I saw in movies. I vaguely knew what a straight flush was but couldnt tell you wether or not 2 pairs was stronger than trips (in movies they always end up with quads against straight flushes), plus in france there is a popular card game (not played for money) where the 10 is stronger than K,Q,J. Definitely ever heard of a flop or river before that. I was immediately hooked by the game, i always played lots of strategy video games and chess so I probably had an advantage over other people who didnt but were learning poker at the same time. I immediately started winning and knew this game had lots of potential. Plus I still remember how winning/losing 20 euros in one evening at that time felt greater/worse than making/losing 20k in 1 day does now. We had pennies home games every weekend.
- Went to the US for the summer on a school program with lots of others schoolmates to better learn english, we landed in Myrtle Beach, North Carolina, a ****ing shithole, worse food ever, almost impossible to find anything other than burgers and drinking water is more expensive than sodas. I worked in a "nascar speedpark" for 6$ an hour, didnt play any poker.
- Back in France, started playing poker a lot more, small sitandgos tournaments on unibet then titan poker, also some low stakes cash games. Started making a few hundred here and there, going less and less to school. fast forward summer 2007, early august french casinos opened poker tables. By that time I had made a couple thousands playing home games and online but didnt save much of it and somehow still decided to have a try in the Lyon casino on 24th august. My networth at the time was less than 1k, the game is 5/10 I had 500euros cash with me and somehow decided to put it all on the table (lol bankroll management). Played like 1 hand in the first 3hrs and blinded down to 300 when a dude announced he would put 100 "in the dark" next hand. He did, and I got dealt KQo, I tanked for like 3mins, KQo has to be a big favourite over 100% of hands right?, I took a leap of faith and decided to go allin, I won that hand, do not remember what he had. A couple more small pots and then the life defining hand happened. I somehow got 44 vs 33 and A7 on A43xx allin by the turn and tripled up and later booked a 1600 win for the night. If I had had 33 instead of 44 in that hand, or lost the KQo allin earlier I would probably be a chemical engineer/chemist today.
- I was going to the casino almost everyday day, sesions from 9pm to 3.30am and play online poker the rest of time, **** school, made over 10k in september. October 1st 2007 I officially became a full time professional poker player and gave up school for good. Definitely the stupidest decision I ever made, at least with the information I had at that time. I mean, come on, I was still playing like 25c/50c fullring on pokerstars online. But 6 and a half years later today it turned out to have been a great decision (or rather a very stupid decision with a very lucky outcome, but well, thats how lots of people have succeeded in life anyways).
- I averaged over 10k euros a month despite a 4% uncapped (for real!) rake in casinos, and moved up to 0.5/1 then 1/2 online. Started travelling for live poker all over france, went to morocoo in feb 08 then played an LAPT in costa rica in may 08, my first and only live cash but Ive played like 5 live tournies overall at some point with friends we were going to EPT's just to play the side cash games.
- November 2008 I finally moved up to 2/4 NLHE and never had to move back down since. I started playing more and more online and less live poker. I did lots of travelling again in 2009, first came to asia, macau and thailand in may then vietnam in september. At the end of 2009 I decided to move to Asia full time. Moved back and forth between Vietnam and Phuket several times. I lived in 2 different poker villas, last one was with 4 other french players that I knew from Lyon, but they exclusively play french sites so none of you would know them. June 2011 I moved full time to ho chi minh city in Vietnam where I still live today and for the foreseeable future. I cant remember the last time I had to wear long sleeves, the temperature never ever drops below 15 degrees Celsius. I got married to a Vietnamese wife I met back a few years ago and we have a kid, born in the beginnings of 2013.
This is me and my son at the swimming pool down my building:
and with wife at some random street food place:
We currently live in a condo in an upper end residential complex, I moved 1 month ago from a fully furnished 90sqm to an unfurnished 140sqm in the same building (to give you an idea of the prices there, it costs me 1250$ a month, and 1200$ for my previous apt). Here is a view of the saigon river and HCMC downtown from my apartment:
I am in the process of buying my own 149sqm apartment in a similar residential complex on the other side of the city. If everything goes according to plan I will be moving out again next spring.
- Poker wise I always did alright and my networth has been slowly but steadily going up. After the 2010 soccer world cup I decided to go for SNE, was behind the pace so worked my ass off the remaining 6 months of the year and did it. 2010 I also learned PLO and mixed games. Did SNE again in 2011, maintained it in 2012 and lost it at the end of 2013.
Now Let see some graphs and stake reports, pokerstars.com, all dates, unfiltered, as of April 1st 2014:
6.6M cash game hands, 870k table profits, 897k paid rake (yes it hurts a lot) of which I got about 480k rakeback (it eases the pain a little but its still ****ing painful).
Thats the vast majority of my poker winnings, there are a couple hundred k's more mostly from live poker then some online tournaments from a while ago and a small volume on other sites. 100% Tax-free, thats one of the good things about living in those south east asian countries, as long as money is flowing in it is very welcomed and they couldn't care less about where it comes from.
Now some pics of some typical thai and vietnamese food:
BBQ marinated calamar
Thai papaya salad
vietnamese style seafood hotpot:
Lobster and mantis shrimp BBQ:
Random breakfast place in Phuket:
and to finish, some typical nightclub in HCMC:
Eating good food matters a lot to me, and preferably healthy too. I've been a complete atheist for as long as I can remember but since every single religion mankind ever invented has some food restrictions I decided a while ago to invent my own religion. I am the founder and only member so far but one day we will overtake the world! The only restriction is a strict prohibition on eating KFC's and Mcdonald's and Pizza Hut's and various other total crap food places. In this new religion we believe pasta in tomato sauce is by far the greatest invention ever made by mankind, not even close. Second place goes for dark chocolate. Red wine and sushis/sashimis are in contention for the bronze medal.At first this post was supposed to be mainly a quarterly report but I feel like I might have rambled a bit, anyways here are some more graphs:
January 2014, total profit 73.8k$, my best poker month so far thanks to some rungood at higher stakes
February 2014, total profit 36.5k$
March 2014, total profit 47.8k$
If it wasnt obvious, total profit also includes rakeback, some tournaments and other cash games not tracked by PT4/HM2.
2014 1st quarter graph
2014 stakes report:
I consider my mains games to be 3/6 but there is always more action at 2/4 so thats where I play the most hands. I tableselect a lot more carefully at 5/10+. I also tableselect more at PLO than NLHE, the rake is much higher there (you pay over 50% more rake at PLO than at the same NLHE stakes, how many winners would be left at NLHE if you increased the rake by 50% overnight?) and the variance is incomparably higher so basic investment theory requires me to need higher EV for playing PLO. To play 25/50 PLO I definitely need a big drooler on the table, I was very fortunate there this year but am still down a bit lifetime at that level. Fortunately right now the overall skill level at PLO is still somewhat weaker than NLHE and more importantly the good reg to weak player ratio is much more favourable.
I am currently on a big heater, those winrates are definitely not sustainable and the 2nd quarter will almost certainly be significantly worse than the first. Regression to the mean is a very powerful thing, fool is the one who thinks it doesnt apply to him. I had 100k+ downswings twice already, it happened before and it will happen again, I'm ready for it. Just because Im running super hot is not going to push me to play against stronger opposition at higher stakes. I am very well aware that my skill level now is roughly the same than when i dropped 100k last mid sept through mid nov. You have to accept and deal with massive short term variance to be successful in poker.
As you can see nowadays my volume is spread out all over the place. What I dont play is fullring, I played close to 2M hands of it before and started with it but now I really dont enjoy it so I very rarely play it anymore. And I also dont play much zoom, I tried to get into it during the second semester of last year, training myself to potentially go for SNE again in 2014 but I really dont like it, I find the action way too fast and changing the lineup every hand is very disturbing to me. Overall it doesnt play into my strengths at all and I play considerably worse on it than on regular tables, so I got rid of it.
Most of my sessions are a mix of NLHE and PLO, I just tableselect the best games I can find at stakes 2/4 and up. This year I reduced my average number of tables and I try not to go over 12 tables at a time anymore unless I have a good reason for it. I try to play less tables when I have higher stakes running. I also open some HUPLO tables, sometimes I get to play some real droolers. Im basically bumhunting there and Im sure some will hate me for it but when Im playing my regular 6-max sessions I have absolutely no interest in playing some good reg HU. For NLHE I dont bother opening tables, you just never get action there, I guess it wouldnt cost me anything to still open some tables but I find having some extra empty tables that never fill quite annoying so I dont do it.
What I find very surprising is that I know of no regular that consistently play both PLO and NLHE at stakes from 2/4 to 5/10. When Im playing like 7 NLHE tables and 5 PLO at those stakes it basically never happens that a regular multitabling 1 game type is also multitabling the other. Its very strange that in 2014 the playerpools are still so separated and there isnt more flexibility in midstakes regulars.
Some zoom regulars can play up to 1700 hands per hour or something similar by 8 tabling it, for me that is completely impossible, my brain is just too slow and my skill level decrease significantly over 700hands/hr. I still masstabled for years and always had putting big volume as my 1st priority, over putting in quality time. This year I changed my approach a lot and reversed the priorities. As a consequence Ill make less from rakeback, especially not being SNE anymore so Ill have to make more from table winnings to compensate for it. Ill reevaluate as time goes on.
I will say a few things about what I consider to be my overall strengths and weaknesses in poker. So brain speed is definitely not one of my strengths and I lag far behind the king10clubs and nanonokos of the world in that department. And sometimes when I play too many tables I get overwhelmed and start playing terrible. I have concentration issues, Im rarely fully focused and do kind of autopilot a lot of the times. It also implies that I cant really play very long sessions, I have to make pauses after a while. Most of my sessions last between 1.5 and 3hrs, very rarely over 4hrs in a row (it happened a lot more often in my SNE days). I also have random lapses of concentration when for like 10-15 min I am clicking buttons without thinking at all and end up making some really terrible, unjustifiable plays. It sounds strange that somebody with those limitations can still be relatively successful at poker in 2014 and I am the 1st to be surprised by this. What can I say? It looks like the field is still somehow playing worse than I do.
I believe one my main strengths is emotional control. My short term results have very little impact on my mood and playing ability, I feel very few emotions while playing poker. I am a full time professional so there is no room for it. I believe only in logic and rational thinking so my emotional control has to stay on an elite level. If I had a big winning or losing day and we have dinner in the evening you will not guess the difference. I'm positive about this because it happened many times. My other big strength is outstanding work ethics which manifests itself in several ways. I never play 12+ hrs a day but I will grind at least 1 session almost every day, I take very few day-offs. Day-offs are for the weak and the feeble minded. I am extremely consistent with what I do, I play most mornings and usually also in the afternoon, rarely in the evening and never at night. I'm leading a quiet and healthy lifestyle, almost boring you could say. 2-3 times a week I end up my afternoon session my going to the gym (and before you ask, yes, I go there primarily to sweat and not to lurk at some fine Asian ladies in short pants and suggestive outfits). Poker wise I try to play a solid style with strong fundamentals and a strong core preflop strategy, you would be surprised to see how many regulars still have big preflop or postflop leaks, easy to spot and easily exploitable. I need them to keep doing so, the rake is big so I need my opponents to make lots of mistakes for a random midstakes regular like me to keep winning at this game. One day will probably come when I am obsolete and cannot beat the games anymore, hopefully I still have some winning years left. In the meantime I keep having high levels of savings and building up my networth, I'm getting some passive income out of it, not much but it's slowly improving. I have no interest in fast cars and jewelry anyways.
I will finish this post with a prayer. May the great imperial Buddha and the gods of poker send to my regular opponents tons of KK into my AA, you can run as good as you want against other players I dont care.
Until next time, this was Raphael for RunItOnce.com .
You're the man.
Nice results and nice journal. Will follow
Hi Raphael. Welcome to RIO!
Really impressive volume and a nice bottom line!
I think it is really great that you have taken the time to write such a thorough introduction and bio about yourself. It is always nice to put a face to a name. I hope other pros might follow your example!
One question: Will you be doing vids on both PLO and NL? I'm primarily a PLO player so I would watch a lot of those vids, if at one point I'll purchase the Elite Membership.
Good luck on making your vids. I hear it is quite a challenge to play and talk viewers through your thought process at the same time.Raphael Cerpedes
You might have misunderstood something, I've actually been making videos for RIO for about 6 months now. I guess I should have made this post long before. Exclusively NLHE videos so far, RIO staff asked me if I would be interested in doing PLO vids too, I am sticking to NLHE for now but probably will do some PLO at some point in the future.NocturnalX
Sorry about that, Raphael. I guess I'm living in my own little world of PLO vids. Looking forward to PLO vids, if you decide to make some!!! ;)
Chael, most irritating gif ever. Hurts my eyes and brainIJustCameForTheFreeCookies
Good stuff, man. Enjoyed the reading. Continued best of luck to you.
My favorite part of the post - "I believe one my main strengths is emotional control. My short term results have very little impact on my mood and playing ability, I feel very few emotions while playing poker. I am a full time professional so there is no room for it. I believe only in logic and rational thinking so my emotional control has to stay on an elite level." Awesome stuff.
Raphael do you only eat seafood?Raphael Cerpedes
Absolutely not, I am a meat lover too, def not a vegetarian. I can eat basically everything that doesn't have too many bones or too much fat in it. And I also eat a lot in western places but the point was to post pics about some typical Asian food. Someone who has never been to Asia probably has never eaten a hot pot or a papaya salad. I mean whats the point of posting beef filet or spaghetti bolognese pics, everybody knows what it looks like. There are some typical Asian meat dishes too, pork in coconut, chicken curry or roasted duck to name a few but somehow couldn't find a photo of those in my photo folder. I've also eaten crocodile, snake and rat in Asia. I'm still missing the dog though, I've been wanting to try it for a while but didn't have the opportunity so far. I will, eventually.
Yeah don't need the bolognese pics but like you say there are plenty of Asian meat dishes as well. Just thought it was assuming that 7/7 food pics were seafood.
Another question.. Do you play live in Vietnam?Raphael Cerpedes
No I do not. There is a casino with a poker table in town (2/4 stakes i think, not sure, never been there myself) and some private games with stakes up to 5/10. I know some poker players that play those sometimes but am not interested. I've heard some cheating stories and safety is an important issue for me. Also when I play live in europe or macau i need the stakes to be at least 10/20 or i dont take the game seriously and spew a lot.
One more.. What do you invest in?Raphael Cerpedes
Nothing out of the ordinary. I try to be diversified, I own several small student rental properties, different financial products with bonds and stocks. I'm also buying my home and always keep a big chunk of cash available as future earnings are quite unpredictable so its important to have a comfortable safety net.
How often do you play live in Europe and Macau? Alright will stop the questions now. Thanks for answering and good luck.Raphael Cerpedes
Very infrequently nowadays, haven't played live poker since last summer in Europe and probably wont play any until at least this summer when am going back to the old continent on vacations. No plans on going back to Macau until at least the end of the year either. I enjoy playing online better now, plus I would probably make more money online anyways and it certainly allows me to lead a much healthier lifestyle.
How did affect to the life of a profesional grinder once you got married and had a kid ?
Ive been on a relationship for the last two years where i live with my girlfriend, but i can´t imagine myself doing what i do and having a child to take care.
Its something that scares me, but certainly could happend on the near future.Raphael Cerpedes
Having a kid sure takes some time away from poker but not all that much when you are well organized.
What makes you think you can't play poker professionally and have children?
I have 2 kids and poker is a great occupation since I'm flexible and get to spend much more time with them. Not having to commute is a positive in it self.
Great post, Thanks. A few questions if you don't mind...
1- Why do you think it is that more mid stakes regs don't play both PLO and NLHE ?
2- I noticed in your videos (I play plo but still enjoy watching your vids) that your hud is relativity simple. You're general thoughts on HUDs ?
3- Would you say you do most of your learning "in-game" or away from the tables ?Raphael Cerpedes
1- I dont really know, as I said in the post, its very surprising to me
2- I use the same HUD for PLO and NLHE, I prefer to have a very simple one that takes minimal screenspace and click on the popups when I need to check some specific stat.
3- I do very little work outside of the tables and basically just play a lot. Thats something I wanted to change this year but I've failed so far.
We'll written Raphael, loved it. What are top 3 reasons in your opinion,that most of us have significantly lower wr at zoom than on the regular tables?Raphael Cerpedes
I dont really know. It also depends on how you define winrate (bb/100 or hourly rate?). Somebody 8-tabling zoom doesnt need nearly the same bb/100 that somebody 12-tabling regular games to still make more money than him overall at equivalent stakes. So I guess from an efficient market perspective it makes a lot of sense that the same individual would have a lower bb/100 in a zoom format and that the reg/weak player ratio would be worse too. Also I am most probably not the only one who plays markedly worse in a zoom setup. Btw what is your screename on stars?
Congratulations on your success.
Damn, that's some really impressive stuff. Pretty huge inspiration to me honestly so yeah, thanks for that :)
Thank you for this inspirational post! Your videos and they way you are able to communicate your thought process is one of the main reasons I keep my elite membership. You have a very fundamentally sound game and I guess that's why your thoughts come across so crisp in your videos.. I am very appreciative that a measly 100$ a month can buy such wealth of information and that you chose to share it.
Good Luck to you in the future.
thx Raphael, I wanted 1 graph and you came with so much more :) really liked the long blog though
Really amazing journal...
Just for the record, there is one player at FTP I noticed that plays 5/10 PLO and HE regularly and at the same time: VanyaRabotaet.
He is Ukranian I think... (Vanya at work, meaning of his nickname)Chael Sonnen
Raphael is French.
Great post there! You seem very consistent and grounded, which I find to be keys for success in this game.
Do you have monthly volume goals and if yes, do you base them on number of hands, hours or days? Also, do you have issues implementing MTT's in your schedule of cash games?Raphael Cerpedes
My main goal every month is not to allow myself to get lazy and keep being productive with my time (am not just talking about poker there). Pokerwise nowadays I average about 120hrs of grinding per month by playing at least 1 short session every day unless am not at home. As I stated before day-offs are for the weak and the feeble minded.
The main reason I hardly play any tournaments is their schedule, if you want to play lots of tournaments while living in Asia you basically have no choice but to play at night and sleep in the afternoon. I definitely dont want to do that and try to keep a half decent sleeping pattern and regular meals. I would play a lot more tournaments if the schedule was more favorable for me.
In my eyes the time zone is the single biggest disadvantage of living in Asia, not just for poker as many real world events happen when its late at night there. It also forced me to completely stop watching any sports. The only thing that I still follow regularly are chess events, since games are usually played in the afternoon in Europe so that's in the evening for me, a lot more convenient than a soccer match from 2 to 4am.
One of my favorite people to see at my table over the years :(
Your graph looks exactly how I envisioned it probably looked, straighttttttttt up. Really good post. I used to be a player who mixed NL/PLO at the same time but I found it was much much easier on my mind if I stuck to one at a time which than become not playing NL anymore at all. I don't think there is much of a reason for most people to be playing both at the same time in a session unless you are playing less than 6 games at once. I'm sure you have your reasons for why you enjoy doing this.
The religion you want to invent is actually a very common approach among people these days :) i love macd's once in awhile so I don't think I can ever be apart of such religion. One thing I have always wondered over the years is why you did not shot take more or get in and battle a bit more at the higher stakes. I always thought you would have done well game selecting or playing in a tougher games at 5/10 10/20 all those times we played 2/4 together.
Because you made such a long/great post I will share something nice and tell you that anytime over the past couple of years someone asked me who the better plo regs were you would always be near the top of that list (probably because out of 100k hands I never stacked you for 100bb+). Not everyone would agree with me when I told them though :)
Glgl :)Raphael Cerpedes
"I don't think there is much of a reason for most people to be playing both at the same time in a session unless you are playing less than 6 games at once" Why would you think that? It doesnt make much sense to me. Somebody who can play both games basically doubles his game selection if he is willing to play both at the same time. "I used to be a player who mixed NL/PLO at the same time but I found it was much much easier on my mind if I stuck to one at a time" I think it has more to do with you playing 24 tables for very long sessions than with you mixing up game types!
For a long time I just filtered out all games above 5/10 in the lobby, not to be tempted to go spewing up there. I agree I sacrificed some EV by doing so but that was for the sake of better stability and more regular results. Also the 10/20+ regs are just way way way better than me, not even close. And I dont want to put myself in a position to lose several hundred k's during a bad downswing. Even today if a big whale is sitting in let say a 200/400 game and there is somehow an empty seat I will not sit in that game.
I think you overestimate me just because I might have run extremely good vs you (actually I dont remember at all, what is your exact screename already? I will look you up in my db). It's not too hard to say who is bad/not very good just by often seeing showdowns of really misplayed hands or by consistently exploiting some frequencies that are completely off. But its a lot harder to differentiate average/good regs from top regs, because you wont know who plays slightly better in many situations and have slighly better frequencies and better constructed ranges. So it becomes easy to think someone is really good when he is just running super hot against us. Or maybe he is playing very aggressively and putting us in tough spots more often, but raw aggression does not translate into skill. I think people underestimate the regs that play very solidly and dont do much out of or the ordinary but hardly make any mistakes and overestimate the regs who play more aggressively overall but also spew a lot.
regarding the last post i would agree that quite often the guys who are tough to play against are so because they are overly spewy and are sacrificing a lot in EV just to do so. very cool thread Raphael, you seem like a very down to earth and humble guy - a rare breed in poker ! would be cool if other coaches on the site practiced making similar threads in terms of even smaller updates as to how they are doing in games along with what they have been up to, it's often quite interesting to read
This is a really inspirational post! It's pretty incredible to think about how the 33 vs 44 has probably changed your life so drastically and how things could have/might have been very different.
I've been trying really hard over the past month to improve my playing ability at cash. I haven't ever played much cash at all and mainly have focused on MTTs with limited success due to limited experience, high variance and a limited bankroll so I enter mostly very high field tournaments. I'm now trying to slowly make the step in to cash and have been ever so slightly dipping my feet in the water. I had always been a losing player in cash but your videos have helped me improve a bunch already coupled with some other studying. I am now slowly but surely seeing improvements in my cash game and the graph is moving the correct way for a change! That's a good start! Lets keep it moving that way. ;)
I particularly enjoy in your videos you explain what you would have done had a situation went differently at points. In some other videos I am left wondering what if x had happened how would he have dealt with the situation then. I'm able to ask in the comments which is awesome but it's also nice to hear you explain in the video as I feel I learn better and it sticks with me more by watching/listening from my own experience.
I've also been able to identify how I am playing situations wrong and plug some leaks by watching you playing and listening to you explain why you think taking x approach is a good approach to take. I'll then compare it to how I play those situations and commonly find leaks.
Thank you my friend for the awesome videos and all the inspiration you provide with this post! I wish you continued success.Raphael Cerpedes
I'm glad I'm being helpful!
Nice thread. Very inspiring your story and how you deal with the overall game/success. A couple of questions...
Do you had some problems moving to vietnam due to internet connection ? I pretend to live in south Asia for a couple of months in the next year and that's my main concern about it.
Do you think being a coach in RiO improved your game in some way ?
Cheers from another Raphael lolRaphael Cerpedes
I definitely had lots of problems with my internet connection in the past, both in Thailand and in Vietnam. I cant remember how many times Ive been berated for slowrolling when I was just having a shitty connection and Im confident Ive been folding AA preflop more than 99% of people due to bad internet. But 10 months ago I could finally get an optical fiber connection and its been a lot more reliable, every once in a while it slows down for a few minutes but for the most part Im very happy with it.
It probably has, and it allowed me to meet some other interesting poker players.
Loved reading this. Great post
Good job man, anyone tell u that u kinda look like BoostedJ? congrats on your play, i look forward to watching your vids.
Hi Raphael. I have been living in Thailand for last couple of months. Curious about living in Vietnam. What do you need to get long term visa in Vietnam to stay there??Why have you switched countries??Raphael Cerpedes
You can just renew tourist visas twice so that you can stay up to 9 months without having to leave the country. Personally I do have a 5yrs visa exemption but I still have to get my passport stamped every 3 months (lol communist countries, they do like to stamp!).