Thursday, August 9, 2018

Interview with Toddy - August 2018 Issue

The August issue of the online magazine, Billiard Buzz, is out and this month I interview the amazing and inspiring Toddy Deatherage! You will be just as surprised as I was with this interview with Toddy. Thank you Toddy for sharing your life with us!

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Yelling at Streams

I fully admit I'm not the best 8-player in the world.  But, hey, I'm not shy at all to admit I do know the game well.

Just to brag a minute to prove my mad 8ball skillzzz:  3-time Texas State scotch doubles champion, ACS State Champ, BCAPL State Champ, 2-time ACS and 2-time BCAPL Women's National Team event Champs, several State level and league level 8ball championships, etc, etc.

As a matter of fact, when I give lessons it's usually on 8ball strategy because of my enhanced knowledge of the game.  I have said before much of it is due to reading numerous times Phil Capelle's book, Play Your Best Pool (as I learn something new every time I read it it seems), but also due to the ton of experiences I gained in all the 8ball league and 8ball tournaments I played in the last 15 years.  (I say 15 years because I wasn't really paying attention to the nuances of the game for the first 10 years of my pool journey).

Because of all the above (skills, experience, and history of giving lessons), I found myself yelling at the BCAPL Nationals stream the other day a couple of weeks ago!  They were streaming some of the matches live from Vegas.

You see, I'm watching these players on the stream compete in the 8ball division and I am shocked they keep making their open balls when they have other balls in clusters or can't be made.

I live alone and so all of a sudden I wake my rescue Pitbull who was napping on the floor, as I yell, "PLAY SAFE!  Omg, play safe!"  As she comes running to me all excited thinking I was talking to her lol.

I don't understand people who keep shooting their open balls in when they can't run out!  I shake my head in disbelief and want to grab them for a 2-hour 8ball strategy session on the table right away lol.

Here's the thing peeps, if you can't run out, you don't MAKE your open balls!  Instead, you punt them and move them to a better position to break up clusters or give you yourself a better chance of running out at your next turn.

The chick on my little phone on the stream was making wide open balls while her and her opponent both had balls tied up.  "PLAY SAFE!  Omg, please, don't make that... shit... she made it."  Then I asked my phone, "Now what is she going to do??"

Yep, she didn't get out, and she lost a great opportunity to be in the best position over her opponent.

Both players didn't know the true strategy of 8ball so they both left themselves with clusters of balls and now stuck with no good opportunities to break things up.  It was a train wreck for sure lol.

I will repeat myself because it's that important.  Don't make your open balls if you can't run out.  Instead, play safe by moving your open ball to a better position to help you in the near future.


Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Practice Not a Home - Project Hunger Games

Katniss (of the Project Hunger Game Series section of my blog) has a pool table at home.

Yet, she goes and practices at different pool rooms before her big tournaments.

I was so happy when I noticed last year she was doing this!  As I have written one thousand and ten times (I might be exaggerating), practicing in a pool room is key because that's the same elements you will encounter in a tournament.  I think practicing at home can hurt us.  Quiet, no distractions, nothing like a pool tournament hahaha!  I do submit that practicing drills at home is okay to do (but I still prefer the atmosphere of a pool room).

So, I asked Katniss why she goes to a pool room to practice.  You know, to get validation of all the amazing tips I share. ;)


Her answer wasn't anywhere close to what I said above!

WTF.  Does anyone even listen to me anymore?  Damn.  I'm all broken hearted over here.

Her reason was her table at home is slow, and she wanted to play on tables that were faster, because her up-coming tournament was on fast cloth.

Ooooh, well fine then, use that as a reason.

She will also practice before tournaments at pool rooms when her up-coming tourney is played on a 9 foot or bar table, because she has an 8 foot table at home.

What I like about this entire post are several factors:  She puts in time to practice, she is aware of the size tables in her events and accommodates her practice, she is always aware of the conditions of tables and makes adjustment to practice on similar cloth, and she is going to many different events!

She puts in time, she does her homework, and she plays in many different types of events.

Now, what about you reading this?  Please tell me you aren't just showing up to a tournament this weekend with no preparations??  Don't disappoint me, peeps!  :)

Life Happens - Danielson Series

I played pool for 25 years.  Not just casual pool, but dedicated on leagues and traveled around playing in big events and followed a few pool tours.

So, I have a little bit of experience with what I'm about to talk about.  Just a smidgeon (sarcasm on, lol)

You see, there is a reason why I have not blogged that much this year about Danielson.  Life happens.

Yep, Life.

And life is important!  And life events sometimes keep us away from pool.

For me, life moments that kept me away from pool were all the normal "big" life things.  I got married in my mid 30s and that kept me away from dedicating myself to pool as I started my "new" life with my then husband.  When we divorced, pool was back on top of the list!  When my Dad passed and then 5 years later my dear Mom passed, both of these life events put a pause on my pool playing days.  Most recently, stopping drinking alcohol has kept me from playing pool. (one year and 8 months as I typed this, yay! :)

These are all big "life" events that make us take a back seat to dedicating our time to playing pool.  Our focus is on other things going on in our lives.

And guess what?  Yep, it's all normal!

So, Danielson recently changed jobs.  That is a big life event that has curtailed his pool playing time.  Further, he is working hard on paying off some big bills.  His priority has shifted a little bit right now and so pool is not on the forefront of his mind.

Again, this is normal people!

We all go through big life events in our pool journey that sometimes derails our quest to play pool often.  And what I found, is each time I got back into pool, I played better and was more knowledge and more mature.

It's normal for people to take breaks for life events.  I know a few guys who took like 15 years off from playing pool to help raise their kids.  And now they are back, playing good still.  Several other friends moved and/or had kids - all things that require us to take a break from pool, right?

But remember, if you are going through a life event, don't fret about the game you love - pool will come back if you want to play again.  :)