by J Scott Christianson, Columbia Daily Tribune Columnist

There’s a reason I don’t play poker for real money: I can’t stand to fold on the first round. The optimist in me always wants to believe there’s a chance my hand will win, even if the odds are against it. Unfortunately, that is why odds are called odds and not hopes.

Of course, the more money one contributes to the pot, the more invested one is in continuing to play the hand, no matter how bad it is. It gets harder and harder to fold as the ante is increased. This holds true for any investment — throwing good…