Wednesday, March 26, 2008

TYPEWRITER is the longest word that can be made using the letters only on one row of the keyboard.

Holy Crap!! 11 days! Did ya' miss me?

....... No?

That's cool, neither did I.

Saint Patties day.... festive. Festively drunk.
My favorite part about this day is not the drinking, not the irish nature of the holiday (which reminds me....), not the parade or the beads given away at bars.

It's the Guinness commercials. This one in particular.
Absolutely hilarious.

Other than watching that once or twice, I enjoyed a fairly blurry weekend. Maybe because it was so long ago, or maybe because I was drinking. Either way... it's blurry and I forget how it went. Good I suppose.

Then I had league a couple of times, lost twice... then the weekend.
Work was somewhere else in there...
Then the weekend arrived. Freakin' Finally!
This past weekend I went to a bar tournament. Had a great time...

I usually play on 9 foot tables with fairly new rails and cloth that is consistently in good condition. Kind of like the room owner knows what a pool player wants.
Rare, I know.

So in said tourney I had the luxury to play on some Valley Barbox's with 70's shag carpet in place for the felt. Tight pockets.
And the happy times of ACS/BCA rules. God I love rules that hate slop. Yummy!

The first match was against a strong player.
His hoodie said something about a castle, not white castle, but the letters were white. Anyway, doesn't matter.

I won the lag and he racked... While he was racking he watched the 5 ball (head ball) move a good 1/4 inch... then he fixed it, while lifting the rack the 5 moved the exact same direction, the exact same amount. He fixed it, another lift, another 1/4 inch.
After the 3rd "attempt" he put the rack away and just kind of walked away from the balls. After watching the 5 ball knock on china's door, get no answer, and then come back to my table... I decided to look a little closer.
If it was a little gap I was going to break it anyway, but I needed to know how to break it.
I realized the 1/4 inch I was seeing was a little less than reality. How about a about a half ball (full inch for those of you that don't play pool....)

Speaking of which... if you don't play, a lot of the stuff I talk about probably makes very little sense... why are you reading all this junk?

Thanks anyway!

Anyhow... so there was a grand canyon between the 5 and the 12, but it was still touching the other stripe. It was still touching, and it was supposed to be a friendly tourney, so I looked at the rack and then shot a confused "Why'd you just eat the stuffing out of my teddy bear for thanksgiving dinner" look at White Castle.

He approached and said "Does it need a rerack?"
My response... "yeah, might as well... there's a bit of a gap in there."

So he reracked, I broke dry... we went back and forth a few innings and he was used to the shag carpet and won the first rack.
In a race to 2, this is not such a great thing.
So I made a couple of nice shots and took the next 2 racks back to back

1-2 White Rabbit (still in the winners bracket, yey)

The Next Race to 2 was against (what I soon found out) a very adept player.
This game was fairly short, and painless. I took 2 strokes, and lost.
The lag... which I won.
I broke... dry. Then he ran the table... twice.

2-0 Really Tall Guy (I'm in the losers bracket, yey?)

So my next match was delayed because, well... winners play first.

Loser's race to 1.
Wait, 1... what's this? 1?
I played my next match against a reaaaallllly old guy, with a Neon green shirt... said something about "I walk for Breast Cancer" or something like that. I thought it was funny because I happened to be wearing my "tits-mcgee" shirt that day. (A shirt I got from a bar in S. Korea for drinking 3 shots with a rattler's tail in the shot. The tail had to touch your lips all 3 times. The shirt shows a scantily dressed lady on the back.

Anyway... I was kind of watching him play earlier in the tourney, and he looked like he knew what he was doing. He made some very nice break outs and was fairly precise with his cue ball position skillz.

So we started to play, I think he broke... I don't remember. I came up to an open table, a run out but there was work to do. 2 of my balls were completely frozen but they weren't lined up to pocket...

I made the shot and got position on the remaining ball... which I made, but locked myself behind the 8 ball so that I could finish out the match. In league I've fallen into the habit of playing banks or kicks and that kind of thing or playing a strong safe. In my league it's a foul for me to crank up beyond a 45 degree angle...
stupid league.

In practice (because I used to dream about becoming a world trick shot artist champion) I've been known to practice a masse or two.
I've won matches due to this skill, and I've beaten stronger opponents by getting out of "lock up" safes with a [i]lucky that it worked[i] masse --I'll admit that much--

And now all this information rushes back to me. Screw the 2 rail kick into a safe. Screw giving him BIH on a foul/safe. Screw the 1 rail with english. I know I'm not Efern Rayes. So screw all that... I'm goin' for it, bitches.

I cranked up, hit the masse a little softer than I wanted to... but that's because my subconscious took over for me, made the 1 ball and then won the rack. Whoot!
err somethin' like that

Then we figured I had some time so a pizza was ordered. After my 2nd piece was demolished in .3 seconds my name was called... Table 3...
Some guy named PJ.

Earlier in the day PJ had beaten the tall white guy that knocked me out of the winners circle. With this knowledge, you know he wasn't too bad of a player.
as we played our race to 1 I couldn't get the thought of smooooothh cheesey pizza with hot sauce smothering it.. outta my mind.

mmm... yum

So he broke.. some clusters remained and he played a couple of balls then got a bit out of line, and had to play safe. I kicked out, made a ball and started to clean the table. I also got out of line and had to play safe.
I'm solids, the Red 3 ball... there is no 3 foul rule... so this is the safe I played

[cuetable pic]

He attempted to make his 1 remaining ball and get the break out... didn't work so well, so he played safe.
[cuetable pic]

I didn't have a clean shot, so I played safe in the same manner... pushed his ball closer to mine... again.
He mumbled somethin' about "dirty f'in' pool playin' sons a bitches. How's a man supposed to win with low down crap like this s*&%"

Or something like that. My smile got a little bigger, and my heart warmed a little bit more.

we went back and forth with this same exact process until he finally said "screw it" and pushed the 3 A LOT closer to the pocket. Unfortunately I was frozen to both the rail, and his ball. Damnit.

[cuetable pic]

I attempted an english only kick but missed, and lost my 2nd loser's match.
Then we went to a place I've never ver ever been to before.
A fun little place, that usually isn't as crowded as it was this day.

Apparently they were having a party, and I'm not a fashion expert... but I noticed a couple of things that might not be in style.



as the night progressed... the drinking continued... and the men looked at the ladies. Hilarious how obvious this guy was.


as the drinking continued... the dancing got crazier... and crazier... and my focus skills lacked


Some things are better than others... what can I say.

So then I had a flat tire on Monday, put on a spare and I didn't go to pool last night.
Thursday, no pool... flat tire again. Next week.. we'll see.

I have friday off work... WHOOOO!!!! BItches!!!!!!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Daylight savings, psssh


How long has it been since my last post? a week, a month? I don't know... I know I've lost two league matches since then, and I have another league thing tonight.

I've lost... and I know exactly why, but it doesn't change a thing. Man that's frustrating.


Thursday night.... got my ass handed to me by an outstanding player. He had 1 game on the wire, and by the way he played... he should have been spotting me 2 games. But whatever. I've never played against a stronger player, doesn't mean there aren't better players out there... because there are. I just haven't played them...

1-2 Sandbagger

Tuesday night I was tired. I woke up sore, achy, and tired. Simply put... I didn't feel like playing pool, staying awake, or anything else.

Sleep, was my goal... and nothing more.

0-2 Guy that didn't need sleep

Then I went home, and slept.

Thursday night

We had a bye.



I don't know about you, but I hate Daylight Savings Time. Spring forward, fall back... despise it.

I get to gain an hour of work and lose an hour of sleep. Great.

A good number of states through out America don't even change their clocks twice a year. Oddly enough, other countries follow this same practice as well. Not every country, of course.

It was originally proposed (Not by Ben Franklin, but around the same time frame) to conserve candle wax. The practice continued to conserve electricity and to enable us to utilize the daylight that we have.

Set your alarm earlier.

We still continue this practice because farmers need to modify their schedule for harvesting and such.

Set your alarm earlier.

Another reason we still change the time continuum twice a year is to "conserve energy by turning on lights later in the evening, and cost american's less money."

Oddly enough...... changing the time on the clock doesn't increase or decrease the rate of speed the sun drops behind the mountains, sea, corn field horizon to the west.


There is a good thing about this DST crap... it provides a decent excuse to be about an hour late to work/school/meeting/whatevers. "ah crap, I completely forgot to reset the clock... sorry I'm late"


Saint Patrick's Day is on MONDAY MONDAY MONDAY

I'm not Irish, but I like to drink... so I'll celebrate it.


Maybe it's sunday........


I'll drink on both days, just to be sure.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Pool, Gambling, Drinking...

Mull2Tuesday night I show up, and I get a single warm up game. I rack, he breaks, we go back and forth... I have a run available, so I go for it. I miss on the 2nd from the 8. My practice opponent wins this practice game.

>>I play pool. I love it, if you couldn't tell. I also play poker. And I'm not too bad at it. Better at pool, but I can definitely stay at the table even if I'm not getting the right cards. If you play, you know what I mean.

Since I moved, I haven't played a single hand of cards... unless it was a drinking game, which isn't poker... so it doesn't count.

I've been searching for a casino, or better yet, a house game to be able to buy in, and walk away with a couple of earned dollars.

No such luck.>>

League calls for a race to 3.

I shake hands with Teddy, or whatever his name was... and he confirms my skill level. He confirms incorrectly... almost 3 levels above my current status. After correcting him he mentions "Wow, you were playing like a pro earlier"

Teddy, teddy.. teddy.

I'm not a pro. I'm not above the highest skill in this league. I win, and I lose... just like everyone else. Perhaps, one day... you'll be able to ask for my signature... and I'll say "sure, here ya' go"

but that's not going to happen any time soon.

My next thought is "he trying to shark me?"

So we lag, I take the lag... and I let this little thought get to my head during the first rack... and he wins it.

Then it comes to mind something that I've read on a blog I link to.... we're not pro's, we're hacks. It doesn't matter if you're a 2 and I'm a 7... neither of us are pro's so it really doesn't matter.

In the 2nd rack I had a cluster just above the 8. I decided to break out a ball from the cluster and play safe behind my 11. I screwed it up TERRIBLY...

I over drew the cueball, made the ball and got position for the 11 in the corner. Damn sandbaggers.

I take this rack and then I take the next 2.

1-3 Rabbit

>>After the league matches came to a close another player on my team invites me to a poker game.

Who am I to say no?

Apparently the game was already in progress for a couple of hours, there's supposed to be about 20 people total... and it's a cheap buy in.

I sit down at the table across from a guy I'm going to call Bonnie.

Wind breaker, super tight jeans, a shirt you can find ONLY in a gift shop and seriously had a pack of cigarettes rolled up in his sleeve as if we were in nam, all over again. Oh, and a mullet.My ninja camera skillzz came in handy.


The guy was over confident, and LOVED to call bluffs. I like these players... they're easy to read, and easier to take money from.

What I couldn't understand is why the other 6 people at my table weren't reading the same thing. They were throwing their money into the pot like Converse was going out of style.

I was going to stay and become the last man sitting, but I decided I had to work the next day. Cashed out early and walked away with more than 10x the buy in amount.

Not bad for 2 hours worth of sittin' on my ass.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Regionals... not quite like league.

Last Thursday night... I played a tough opponent, he was spotting a game in a race to 4. Hill-Hill, he took the final game as I rattled the 8. Out the window with the undefeatedness on thursdays.
Great game though... I never thought I'd say this, but it felt kinda' good to be told I'm sandbagging.
I'm not, of course... and it was presented as a joke, but he said it while handing me a beer... so who am I to get upset? haha... nice.

2-4 Guy that bought me a beer. Thanks guy.

The professor and I both qualified for regionals. It was a solid 2 hour drive to no where's ville, I think they had 2 bars. So we saved the environment, carpooled the 2 hours of highway. Got out there Friday night and had some of the best mexican food I've had in a LONG time.

Better than when I was in mexico even.

The burrito I got was huge. I'm talkin' massive. Bigger than my plate (if the plate was smaller) kinda' big.

Shoulda got a picture, but my battery was dead. (and the foods looked too good to wait)

So I ate the thing and got full about 1/2 way through, took the rest back to the hotel and then realized I didn't have a fridge.

"It's chilly out, I'll leave it under the car. It's like an outside fridge" I thought.

Then I realized how cold I'd get on my way out to the car, and set the little white box full of gigantic burrito and rice with refried beans covered in "super hot sauce"... on top of the TV.

Registration was at 10am the next day... That finished at about 10:30... There wasn't a single practice table unless you were able to win a table, and keep it... this was your practice.

14 tables, 108 people.



14 Diamond Pro Cut, Blue Simonis, 7feet long by 3.5 feet wide, red dot smart tables.


And 108 people.


At least they were perfect tables......

So at around 1:30 I played my first match in a race to 3. Hank played well. No idea what his real name was, but I remember him as Hank. He ran to the hill as quickly as he could... his trouble was getting over it. I realized in the first 2 racks I wasn't playing nearly as defensively as normal. Playing really aggressive, and it wasn't working.

I changed up my style, slowed down a bit (to a sharkingly slow speed, I might add) and started to play safe. A lot.

If I didn't have a run out, I'd make 1... and safe. Hank would run until he missed, and ended up leaving 1 ball + the 8... 3 racks in a row.

If you play this hellish game, you know that having 1 ball to hit, while the other player has 6 or 7 to hide the cueball behind....... this odds is bad for yous.

Hank didn't catch on quick enough, and lost his first match.

In the last 3 racks of this match I racked up around 6 or 7 defensive marks. But I won. And I'm still in the winner's bracket.

2-3 Rabbit

According to the board I had a bye... so I figure it's going to take at LEAST another hour, maybe 2 before my next match. I order a burger, it arrives and I'm waiting for a side of ranch... my name is called. My name is called to match up with someone I know. Some one that I've played against in the past.

Someone I didn't need to drive 2 hours away from my city to play against. I played a game right before I got into his car for a drive to this regionals tournament.

"Table Assignment for Rabbit and the Professor, Table 3" booms over the p.a.

I eat a french fry, he gets the score sheet. I never did get my ranch.

I meet him at Table 3.

He wins the lag, and I go straight to work... in 5 innings I have 2 racks in my pocket and I'm at the 8 ball on the 3rd rack. This is my game, my chance for vegas. My chance at glory and bright lights of gambling and booze.

I think they have hookers in vegas too. Not that I'd buy one, but that they have them.

I'm left with an easy on the 8... and like a jack ass, I over cut it... BARELY move the 8 ball, I think it budged a bout the width of a cat's whisker, and in this one singular motion of missing the 8 ball, I started the decent.

If I was on a plane that had run out of fuel... as the nose dips slightly and the angle of the plane drops 5 degrees and heads towards the deserted Australian outback... in that industry, they call this part of the flight the "Terminal Phase."

I scratched. Then I battled, fought, ridged tooth and sharpened nail... all on the felt, of course... and the professor ended up slowing climbing to his hill. Much like an old video game that I love SO much, we were hill/hill some odd 20 innings later, fiTankWarsghting, battling, and throwing rocks at one another to distract from the army flanking their castle.

I missed hitting the cue ball once or twice, miscue style... he did the same and let the cue drift 2 inches to no wheres. Both of us giving the other ball in hand a couple times.

He came out victorious in the end.

2-4 Professor

Unfortunately the Professor went on to play against the same person he walked all over in his first match, and lost... 3-3.

So now I'm in the loser's bracket, it's 4:30pm... and I wait.

and wait, wait, wait some more, and then continue to wait.

At 10:30 my name is called.

At this point, I don't really care. It hasn't been explained clearly what happens if you're in the loser's bracket and I know I don't really want to wake up early the following morning. I will if I have to, but I don't really want to.

So I figure if I win the loser's bracket, so what... I'm top loser? That's great! I'm still not goin' to vegas.

So I don't put forth my full attention, and I don't play some of the perfect positions that I should... and I lose my loser's match.

2-3 Short guy with a hat

I get to sleep in on Sunday, so it's not a big deal.

What did I learn?

  • Nerves (for me) make more of a difference when there's other depending on me to win. When it's just me, and that's it... nerves don't affect me nearly as much
  • Don't let your head get out of the game. It doesn't matter what else is going on off the table, stay in it... and stay in it to win
  • I need to get back to lansing and get another burrito