The "Dumb-Dumb" Approach
I found out just how effective this little strategy is just yesterday....even if it was a bit by accident. Let me explain.
I was playing in a SNG (6 player), and I'll admit it, I was playing a bit like a moron the first few hands. Now I know that in a 6 player game you need to play more hands, but I was just making some terrible calls, trying to bluff at the wrong times, or chasing ridiculous draws. After a few minutes of this, I finally came to my senses and said to myself, "What the hell are you doing, idiot? Keep playing like this and you will be out of this one in a hurry!" Now here's where the beauty of this situation comes in.
I had to show my hand a few times, so the players had gotten an eye-full of my terrible play. Well, they all assumed I was a complete dumb-ass, and once I reigned in my game, they obviously couldn't get that out of their heads! I started only playing premium hands, then once I was chip leader started throwing my weight around a little more. They kept calling, and I slaughtered almost all of them. So, my dumb-dumb play in the beginning really helped to sweeten a lot of the pots I was involved in. I'm just thankful that the oxygen supply increased dramatically in my little brain before I blew it all entirely!
Now please understand, I am not endorsing idiotic play in anyway! I just wanted to share my little story of how once I came to my senses, my bad table rep at the beginning became my friend when I played like I knew what I was doing later on!