Originally Posted by crfh
There's no reason to feel like a coward. Playing tight, or conservatively, is a good idea at least in the first rounds. No matter how much they taunt you, playing bad cards is just being a bad poker player.
That's correct, but when you do come in, you should tend to play your hand strong. The best players are usually tight (meaning they fold a lot) but also aggressive (meaning they tend to bet or raise rather than check or call) -- though selectively so. But betting a small amount, like 1/3 or 1/4 the pot, is usually pointless... either you should fold, or you should be betting more. In fact, when I play poker, I virtually always bet the size of the pot. I only bet less when I think my opponent is too likely to fold, and I want to make some money off them -- or if I have a weak hand and want to trick my opponent into thinking I'm making that play.