Thursday, January 31, 2008

The winter of 1932 was so cold that Niagara Falls froze completely solid.

  Tuesday was league night again. I met the player that I failed to meet last Tuesday... I think his name is.... who I wanna say Mike or  Migal or something. Michael? Whatever

League was a good time, I played a match in a race to 3. I noticed early that my opponent didn't pay much attention to where his cue ball went after hitting the target object ball. I decided I'd use this to my advantage.... if I found the
In the 2nd rack my 7 was tied up with one of his spheres and the 8... I missed the break out with my one possible key ball and decided to play safe. Hit the 6 a little hard, it dropped, and I hooked myself. Couldn't have planned a better safety. Damn.
So I decide to give the guy a shot, and play what I call a "fake safe"
Miss on purpose, but leave the ball in the jaws of a pocket

so I move my 2 ball about 6 inches closer to a corner pocket, but I still don't have a decent possibility for a break out.
Now this is off the break, so he still has every one of his stripes to play safe, or run... which a smart player wouldn't do. Not with this layout. From my seat I'm analyising the table and trying
to figure out how I'm going to kick out of the safes that he could possibly put me in.
So he puts together a 2 ball run, then an odd strike into the cluster. MY cluster. Odd choice, but it freed up both my 7, and the 8 ball.... I'll take it.
So I'm 2 up and we're down to the last 4 balls on the third rack... 1 of those 4 is mine.
I make my last ball but scratch, giving up ball in hand. He knocks a couple down... has the 9, then he's on the 8. He hits the 9 into the closest side pocket... a soft hit, setting himself up for the
8. From my angle I immediately see that if he doesn't put a good amount of top... or a strong draw stroke, he's going to scratch.
Well, he hits the 8 into the called pocket and the rock slides smooth as a slip & slide on a sweet summer day in June... right into the far side pocket.
3-0 Rabbit

As you can tell, Tuesday's league wasn't very
exciting... Driving to league, on the other hand,
was MUCH more exciting.  

As you may know... I recently bought a new vehicular (pronounced: Ve-heck-u-lurr) mobile.
On Tuesday we had a decent snow fall. My Tuesday night team moves to different bars every so often. Last week we were at a bar I'd been to once in my life.

So I'm driving along one hand on the wheel music turned down to a low hum so I can call for directions. Only an inch or two on the road and I'm cruising at 35-40mph

The telephone's voice tells me I've gone to far, and should have taken a right where I kept going straight.
So I find a good parking lot, dip in, flip a b**** and get back on the road.
Now, just for the record, the wind is kind 2snowof heavy in various places and there's snow drifting across at some odd 15mph gusts. Kind of hard to see through.
So back up to 30... 35mph and I'm cruising along, eattin' potato chips, talkin' on my cellular device, adjusting volume, ensuring the heater is on high, hitting the wiper blades.... this is what they call multi-tasking. You know... the usual.
Actually I was driving while on the phone getting directions at about 30-35. Nothing more. I'm on one of those 2 lanes for each direction type road... I'm in the left lane. As I'm nearing my destination I notice a pair of bright white lights surrounded by little yellow lights drifting from the other direction into my lane.
I let off the gas in preparation of evasive maneuvers.
The lights get bigger and brighter and the distance between them and my life decrease.I quickly realize it's a semi.

An 18 wheeler driving a little faster than everyone else because he can see out over the random snow drifts.
15,000 tons on top of 18 wheels of death, bumbling towards the van.
The phone yells in a clippy static language I'm too unfamiliar with to respond. I tell it "hang on"
Setting the phone in my lap I grip the wheel and think out loud "airbag don't fail me now... Brace for impact"
Gripping the wheel tighter with both hands in attempt to prevent my head from flying into the approaching grill.
This is the part my subconscious took over
This is where I completely stopped thinking, and somehow know exactly what happened, and why.
Aware that I was driving faster than everyone else, there was no need to check my blind spot... no one was there.
My submerged mind turned the radio up 2 notches and drifted my body (van included) into the right lane...
Narrowly avoiding the chrome bummer my headlights reflected off of a split moment before
I find the phone in my lap. Putting it to my ear I inform "thanks for holding, I was avoiding death."3snow


When I arrived at my destination the door guy checked my ID... When he realized I was a Coloradoian... we made a bit of small talk...

"Colorado, right on... what part?"

"Colorado Springs most recently, but I've kind of bounced around"

"Right on, I lived in Boulder for about 10 years"

"Cool, I grew up in Golden until I was about 16. Love it out there, especially Boulder"

"Yeah, same here. The snow is worth it out there."

"What do you mean?"

"Snow is worthless unless you have large hills... like the mountain kind for snowboarding. Just f***s up the roads."

"You have no idea man, no idea"

So it was a good night. I taunted death, and then shut out my opponent in a league match.


Title is according to

Monday, January 28, 2008

League Started Last Week

I have league 2 nights a week. Same team members save 1 or 2 people... One night travels from bar to bar, and the other is an in house league (it doesn't travel)

So I went to play on Tuesday, straight from work... walked in, ordered a beer and let the cue stick warm to the temperatures of the room. After watching 2 practice games I was up.

I racked, his break came up dry with a good spread.. if you ignore 1 cluster. The stripes had a key ball that might break up the cluster... solids didn't.

I put down the 15.. then the 9.. then the 12.. then the 11 to break out the 14... then the 13 and came back around for the 14.

7 balls... 7 strokes... and I'm not exactly perfect on the 8, but it's a makeable cut. Has to be perfect though, otherwise it won't squeeze through the 1 and 6 gate 7inches from the 8ball.

So I shoot the 8, and leave it as a perfect hanger. Right dead center pocket.

He goes, plays safe behind a makeshift cluster.... I kick 3 rails, make the 8........ and the cue.

I lost.

Run the table, and lose on an 8ball scratch. Damnit man, damnit to hell.

At least I got the run :)

So this sets the pace for the night, and I play too aggressively and lose my match,

1-3 Bar Guy

Thursday night I started out strong on the practice table, and after about 3 racks I find that I'm unable to put together a 2 ball run.

I start playing the match, and I decide to play a little wiser.... and I win.

After finishing the 2nd rack the guy I'm playing starts telling me about how much his night has sucked. His car blew up, girlfriend dumped him, walked 2 miles in 5 degree weather, and his $1000 cue was stolen so he was borrowing his captain's $200 cue. Now, if you know me --at all--... then you already know I don't give a crap about anyone's sob story. So this guy telling me that his life sucks and the tears keep refilling his beer before the waitress- doesn't affect me at all. As a matter of fact, I remember saying "Wow, that sucks. Ready for the next rack?"

3-0 Rabbit

Tomorrow night is another league night... we have a new player on the team. Someone I've never met before, but seems like he'll make things interesting.

Time will tell

Friday, January 25, 2008

Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated

The car I used to drive is what some would consider a text book example of a "clunker"1

Which is exactly what it was... is. The car has seen it's days, that's for sure. The roof used to leak bad enough there was a bucket on the passenger side floor when I bought the car. The bucket had only been there a day or 2 so all the water that leaked in had been soaked up by the gracious carpet flooring.
Still soaked to this day.2

The passenger side mirror was missing and the rear defroster wires didn't work.

Under the seats 4the metal is rusted so badly the previous owner sat d own in the driver's seat and the entire chair fell backwards in a fury of broken metal. Instead of driving like I have arms longer than my legs, I decided to prop the seat up.

I needed a device. After about a week of searching and thinking and using beer boxes and crushing laundry baskets... by a dumpster I saw it.
A night stand, perfect... I opened the back door, shoved this night stand into my car propping the driver's seat closer to the steering wheel than desired...
but it was better.

The breaks were squishy and the dome light/cigarette lighter/hazard switch... all didn't work. They all went out the same day.

The antenna was broken off so I only received AM stations... ick6

Oh, the heater didn't work either. Over the past month or so it's gotten pretty cold, cold enough for frost.
About a week ago I went outside to go to work... it was a fairly warm 30something degrees, but above freezing nonetheless.
All the cars in the parking lot were free of frost and happily blinding me with the reflecting sun.

Then you get to my car... no frost on any of the windows at all, smooth as glass. And then you open the door and step inside, closing the door behind you creates a trap of ice and chill.
Every window is covered with ice on the inside of the car. Without a heater/defroster, I own an ice scraper.. for the inside of the car.

I also own a 3 wick candle and a book of matches for the same reason.

The point of all that is I made purchase of a van! A shiny not new but new to me van!!!

1a 2a 3a4a 5a 6a 7a 8a Wall Van

It has heat, auto windows, a radio that works, and a remote key door locker thing



Friday, January 18, 2008

There are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order

League started last night. I didn't play in a match, but I did play very well.

Since starting my resolution, I've blown it off every chance I've gotten... and I'm ok with that.

I played my team captain... he played well, but not top of his game. We played 3 sets of 8ball.
First was a race to five... he won the first rack, then I won 3 in a row, then he caught up so we were at 3/3, then we went back and forth ending at 5/4 - Rabbit

I got another beer for the both of us, and we started a race to 3

he won the first 2 and then I took 1... he won that match.
1/3 - Cap'n

It was getting a bit late and we both had to work in the morning, so we wrapped the night up with a cozy race to 2.

I made a stupid sell out on the 8 at the end of the 2nd game and he won that one. But I took the match
2/1 - Rabbit

I was in stroke... I felt good and I wasn't over thinking every freaking shot.
It was nice... a lot more like practice. Easier to develop a rhythm and see the patterns.
Being in stroke gives me greater satisfaction than many things... here's a list to give you a better idea:

I like it when blinkers on different cars are in sync at a stop light.
When the rain is warm
When people bend the rules without offending anyone, and no one complains about it.
I like it when the guy in front of me sees my blinker and inches forward so I can get in the turn lane.

and for balance... the Dislikes

When people talk to me when I'm reading... psh, like I read that often
Myspace profiles that make the music Auto-Play (I HATE that)
I don't like people that run red lights.
People that can't appreciate a good defensive play/safety in billiards
Stupid simple movies created solely for the purpose of profit
Music videos that show the band playing for no apparent reason

When the TV is turned up louder than it has to be

The most difficult part of this night were 2 girls running around offering free drinks of this new Miller Chill crap. They're cute and outgoing... just as a beer girl should be... and I'm thinking my Cap'n might want to pick up on one. So I'm trying to play wing for him a little, but still pay attention to the game.
A difficult balance.

It's ok though, because I still won.
Ahhh... the joys of winning.

"abstemious" and "facetious." (a-e-i-o-u)

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

The most dangerous strategy is to jump a chasm in two leaps.

On sunday I went and played for about an hour. I decided to practice the shot I mentioned previously... and as it turns out, I really do have an Achilles heel. I'm under cutting the long shots... slicing them right into the 2nd diamond. Damn.

I hate drills too.
Double Damn.

I'm going to do the double damned drills and get proficient at these damn shots, damnit.

Back in early November I played in a regionals qualifier... Single elimination. Lost my first game, 4-0... at least it was a good lesson... lesson learned, don't give him a shot.
He ended up not making it to the final table.

About an hour later the LO (League Operator) decided that we had enough time for another qualifier match before league started...
Since I lost my socks the first time around, I decided to put up another pair of knee highs.

We drew tables... I drew the same table... just so happened I drew the same guy, again.
I-Pod and all.

We start to play... this time I decide not to give myself any slack, and play the table... not the player.
So the first 2 games I lose fairly quickly.... then I win 1, then win another... before I knew it we were hill-a/hill-a

The LO wanders over and mentions that whoever takes this win has a serious chance of going to the final table... judging on how we're playing compared to the other players.

Have you ever seen the movie "The Devil's Advocate"? Well, if not... you should watch it. Anyhow, there's a part in there where the Devil guy is talking to tom cruise or whoever the actor is and says something to the effect of "under pressure some people focus... and other people fumble"
That's paraphrased, but you get the idea.

As it turns out I don't fumble... I focus.
I win... win again on the semi-final's table... now I'm waiting around for the other semi-final table to finish up so I can complete the qualifier.

On the final table is my team captain and some other guy. A race to 5... both are playin' pretty sporty... here I'm wondering if I'm going to play my team captain (whom I've never beat unless he was half in the bag) or this Random Yahoo that I've never met before.

No idea what the end score was between those 2, I mean... seriously... it was 3 months ago...
but I end up going against Random Yahoo

I win the lag but end up losing the first game... he breaks... 8 on the snap.
Bastard... he's already 2 up and it's only 2 racks in.

He breaks again, I miss my target... he misses but also scratches...... OPen Table... Ball in hand. Sweet.

I run 4 then safety, he kicks, good hit but gives the table back.
I clean up from there.
2-1... Random Yahoo

I break, make 1... same as last game, 3 or 4 then safety... works, I win


Early this session I was a lower level player... so this put me on the hill... and he still needed 3 games to go.

So I break again and come up dry but there's a cluster to mess with.
He starts dropping balls and with every drop the cue ball goes within inches of the cluster f---

Doesn't break anything out and misses what would have been a beautiful safety.
So I ran a few and leave him kissing the cluster with no other shot.

He swings... hopes... and misses. But it's a good hit....... too bad for him that I don't have a cluster to mess with.

2/3 - Rabbit

The point of this little story is that same day the LO gave me a post card thing to mail in so I can get a little "packet" regarding the regionals. I have about 2 months left before the packet is supposed to arrive... and I've still got the post card, I've even got a stamp on it, and I have it in my pocket...

God I'm a procrastinator.
I should resolute not to be.

Meh, Maybe next year.

Friday, January 4, 2008

New Years was so long ago



I like the idea of saying i'm going to improve on something or do this or do that... but in all reality
I'm lazy.

I might focus on the "something" for 30 days or so, and then get busy with forgetting about the resolute... and well, stop resoluting. That's a word... (resoluting) promise.

Anyway, I made a resolution to forget about... it's to improve significantly at pool.
Something about working on long shots... making 9/10 attempts when the OB is 7+ diamonds distance from the pocket.
I would go for 10/10, but that's not a realistic goal... and I'd quit.
Also to make a minimum of 1 ball on the break 4/5... 8/10 attempts.

This 2nd one is so totally not realistic... but whateva... aim for the moon and reach the sky, right?

Wish luck!