Saturday, January 31, 2015

Gambling Details

I mentioned I had gambled earlier in January and wanted to provide more details, just in case you wondered how it went, since I didn't say how the night ended up in my previous blog entry.  I mostly talked about one aspect - dealing with negativity.

Per our contract, my opponent and I (a guy) were suppose to play $300 sets, 6 ahead, 9-ball on a 9-foot table. 

However, I didn't come to the pool room this particular night to gamble.  Since I was so unprepared and hadn't even thought I would be gambling, I knew my chances would be better on the Diamond bar table.

He finally agreed to play on the Diamond bar table and he came up with the wager:  $25 a game.  I said yes.

Long story short, we broke even after about 2 1/2 hours.

If you don't want the details, go ahead and stop reading now, lol.

I had just finished eating with friends before I walked in the poolroom, so my tummy was full.  I could tell I was also a little dehydrated, so I drank a lot of water, as we played.

I could feel my heart racing from the blood focusing on digesting my food, and me drinking a lot of water.

But, I played well.

Well, I played good.

HOWEVER - I'm the first to admit I got a lot of rolls.

We went back and forth for many many games and I never even got above 2 ahead in an hour.  Nor did he, though.

He played real good safes, but I also kick well.

It was actually a joy to play!  I LOVE me some Diamond bar tables and I play good on them because I know their speed (fast).

I noticed I was taking my time and REALLY focusing on 3-ball shape.  He prolly thought I took too long walking around the table, actually, but honestly, it's helps me to look ahead where I need to be on that bright blue, lovely canvas.  :)

I made a few really great outs (the one I wrote about before), and with some rolls, I found myself ahead by 4 after about an hour and a half.  I honestly thought he was going to quit when he got down $100, but he kept on.

I also though he should quit because I was getting so many rolls in this match up.  It would have been different another day and I thought he should stop playing.  I asked when we got to even again did he want to quit and he said no.  So, we kept playing.

I was too hot to play anymore and recognized that I needed to quit.

It was also VERY smokey in the room.

There were a lot of factors that led me to wanting to quit, even though I was playing well and enjoying playing on the Diamond bar table.

At one point, he played a good safe on the 9-ball (trying to freeze the cueball to it and the rail) and my safe back was not good and I sold out.  Afterwards, he told me how I should have played safe back.  I was thinking, "Are you kidding me?  Giving me advice?"  lol.

At one point later in the night, he got up two games, and I got nervous about it, but I got it back to even.  You see, I could tell I was losing focus, tired, and too hot to play.  I needed to quit soon at even, or else I would find MYSELF down $100 because I was getting tired and may not be able to get back to even.

I finally told him when we got back to even again I had to quit.

I hadn't really gambled that long in many months (well, I hardly ever gamble anyway), and so it was a tester for sure.

I am glad I got good play in, though!  It felt great! 

Friday, January 30, 2015

Gambling Around Negativity

A couple of weekends ago I gambled against a guy who I was suppose to play a while ago, but we never met up.  I happened to be at the pool room for another reason this particular Friday night,  and he was there, too, so we decided to play.

While we didn't play on the 9 foot table for $300 sets like our contract stated, we did finally agree to play 9-ball on the Diamond bar table for $25 a game.

During our play, this one particular guy came over to watch.

The first time he came over, he sat in my chair.  When I was done at the table, I walked up to my chair and asked for it back (I have to have a chair to return to when I play or else I get distracted with the interruptions of trying to get my chair back). 

This guy seems to judge people a lot when they play.

I'm not saying he does, I'm just saying it SEEMS like he does, and I do not play well with those type of people around me watching my mistakes (see how it even makes me word things negatively!  Argh).

He left the area after I asked him to leave my chair, but he was still watching from afar.... but I tried not to look around.

About an hour later, he comes by AGAIN and sits in my chair.  

 Again, really?

I had just got ball in hand, but it was a really tough out with two breakouts needed.  I tried to just ignore that he was so close watching and judging (and in my chair again), and I had enough to deal with ON the table.  I broke out the first cluster, made a few balls,  and saw I would have to use the 4 to break out the 5/8 and hope for a shot after.  I studied each shot really long and took prolly too much time, but I had to be real careful and plan my 3-balls-ahead-shape more than usual because it was such a tough run.

I think I even got bad from the 7 to the 8 for shape on the 9.  I studied it well, though, on what best to do, and never rushed my shots.

Anyway, I get out that tough rack and then he calls me over.  I'm extremely hesitant to even hear what he has to say.

He says, "Hey Melinda, hey Melinda.  I gotta tell you something. "

"What's that?"

Even tho I don't want to know and walk past him to grab my break cue, then start to walk away to get ready to break.

"Hey, hey, that was a really, really nice out.  I mean really nice out.  It was perfect, actually.  You shot it so good."

Wow.  Did he really just compliment me?

While I was surprised he said that, I didn't act arrogant or happy, even though I already knew in my heart it really was a great out on not such an easy layout.  I simply replied, "thank you" and then broke the next rack.

I didn't want to focus on his words because that game was over now, and I still needed to be in the present moment of THIS game, not be over-excited about my last game because over confidence can hurt.

But I admit it was really cool someone saw the tough out and acknowledged it.  Or, was I happier I got out?  Or, was I really happier I overcame his presence in the area while I was shooting?  Okay, all three!  lol

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Preparing For a Tourney

How do you prepare for a tourney?

Wait, do you prepare? Or do you just show up?

Honestly, it's okay if you do.  But even a few little mental preparations are better than nothing. 

Some people hit ball, hit balls, hit balls.  

Me, personally, I prepare by envisioning myself taking my time on my shots, and staying down well.  I have to keep that in mind or else I will rush my shots and that is NOT good for me.  It hurts my success, so I need to ensure to remember to not be in a rush.  Yes, I say "remember" because I do still forget sometimes.  So, that is my personal preparation.   

Visualization is very important and a big part of my preparation:

The advantages of sport visualization are extremely numerous. Athletes can use it to motivate themselves to train at their best. It helps you put things into perspective about what things are important and it also helps you block out any impending negative thoughts. Few activities can get an athlete psyched up like sport visualization.
(read more about sports visualizations HERE.)

Some people practice their break.  One of my friends' husband just borrowed a magic rack from me because he is playing in a big 10-ball event that will use magic racks and so he wants to practice his break with it.   Pretty impressive really to realize to work on that - and it's over a month away!  But, he doesn't play 10 ball nor has he ever broke with a magic rack before.

One thing I learned from one of Phil Capelle books is to also be prepared for the unknowns.

Wait, what?  How do you do that?

I wrote about this before, but it's been awhile so I wanted to remind people as this is a new year with new goals and new tournaments that you want to play in.

Basically. ...
I think it's very important to prepare for the UNKNOWN conditions of your tournament BEFORE you get to the tournament.

Specifically, these unknowns:

1. Equipment
2. Temperature
3. Surroundings

What?  How can I prepare for the conditions before I'm even at the pool room, or have practiced on the table to see how it rolls?... you might be asking yourself.

Let me 'esplain:

You should be aware and be prepared that the equipment may not be the best.  To help combat your frustrations with non-perfect tables, consider that everyone is playing under the same conditions.  Yes, we would like pristine conditions, but let's be realistic - there may be holes in the cloth, dead rails, plastic/clumsy racks/pockets, bad lightning.  I have played in a pool tournament with all of these conditions on one table before!  If you let yourself get upset over these things (things which you can't control), then you are not focusing on pool.  You are letting things interfere with your pool game that has nothing to do with being mentally able to focus completely on the task at hand.

Same for the temperature in the pool room.  Be prepared that some pool rooms get exceptionally cold or hot!  Bring an extra sweater or over shirt with sleeves as a backup in case the room is cold.  Better to have this as a backup than you not being able to play because your arms are frozen.  In the Summer in Texas, sometimes the A/C breaks or freezes and it gets hotter inside than out (no joke).  We play in these conditions a lot, believe it or not.  If you are consumed with negative thoughts about how damn hot it is, then you aren't focusing on pool again.  Don't let the negative energy of being upset about something YOU HAVE NO CONTROL OVER affect your pool game.

Now for the atmosphere - you never really know what you might be getting into.  Even if you've played in this particular tourney 1,000 times, maybe this time there is a heckler, or they get a new waitress who is the worst server ever, or the guys on the next table are clueless and keep getting in your way when you shoot.  Be prepared for everything; for anything.  Know that things may not be perfect; accept that!  Accept that you have no control over your surroundings.  When you do, then you can instead focus on playing your best pool, so the distractions do not become a negative and interfere with your matches.

Nothing is worse than distractions affecting your mental game.  Distractions are negative emotions that cause negative thoughts which leads to not thinking clearly which causes tenses muscles and your fundamentals become affected.  Negative thoughts and emotions CAN be tamed.  These tips above can help if you practice them.

This is a good reminder - to not let things bother us that we cannot control.  If you accept that things may go wrong and NOT let them bother you, you can then focus on playing pool; your best ability to play pool.  Don't let any of the above become YOUR excuse for losing.  Or for not playing your best.  Before you set foot into the pool room to play in the tourney, already be prepared for the unknown distractions so you can PLAY POOL with a clear, positive, strong mind.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Tools in Our Tool Box

What is in your toolbox?

Do you use ALL your tools when you play pool?

There are so many.  Do you use them all?

Maybe it's taking breaks.

Remembering to act/be confident.

Breathe to slow down your adrenaline.

Drink lots of water.

Have no mercy.

There are SO many things to remember when you play in tournaments.  Let's face it.  Stay down.  Sit still.  Breathe.  Try to beat your opponent 7-0.  Wear comfy clothes.  Hit balls before hand.  Eat something effective.  Keep mental notes handy to review.  Oh, and pause then follow through.

While obviously you shouldn't be thinking about all of this during a tournament, you must still be aware of SO many things in your tool box.

For instance.

I was talking to a player back in December during a break she had after a tough win.

She shared something with me, that I'm still shocked about.

The tables are kind of close to each other in a certain part of the room.  She was playing a tall opponent.

She would deliberately leave a safety down a certain end of the pool table, so her opponent would have a difficult time making the shot b/c she would be crouched against another table to shoot, and have an awkward stance.

WOW.  I had never thought of that.

Talk about using ALL the tools in your toolbox!

Makes me wonder what other tools are out there, as I hadn't thought about this one before!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Mobile App for Showing Your Shots

There have been several options to show your friends a shot.

I have written about a few before:
  • Napkin - link
  • Drawing on your phone - link
  • Online website - see an example I posted in another blog entry here
And there have been printed little notebooks, too.

And of course, now, there is an app for that.

If you haven't been shown this yet by any friends, let me introduce you to Shot Pad.

(Click image to enlarge)

You can download from any playstore via any mobile phone or device.

It's very easy to move the balls around and draw lines.  It also allows you to save the diagram to your gallery.  It's really cool!

Here is what the logo looks like, so you make sure the download the correct Shot Pad:

And here is an example of showing a shot:


Friday, January 23, 2015

Are They Really Sharking You?

During the Omega Tournament in January, I was sitting at the tournament desk on Sunday and all of a sudden I hear someone talking very loud at me.

I look up and a player is visibly upset.

He's about two and a half tables away, but he was still standing there upset, and raising his voice at me.

"You gonna let him go take a cigarette break?   Really?  I just won 3 games in a row and he has to take a break now?"

I didn't really understand completely what was going on.

But with what I knew, I replied over the tables, "Yes, he can take a break."

"But right now?  He's obviously trying to slow me down because I just won three games in a row and now it's only 3-4."

I stood my ground, "Everyone can take a break each match.  Whether it's to smoke or go to the bathroom, they can take a break."

He was STEAMING.  I could see it in his eyes.

His opponent came back quite quickly, even for a smoke break, and they continued their match.

I would find out later that his opponent had him down 4-0, and he came back and ran 3 games in a row and that's when his opponent took a break.

My optimistic side automatically says that the guy who took the break prolly just simply needed a break.  He was up 4-0, now he's down, and they are playing on the non-smoking side, so he took his break to go smoke a cigarette.

If I was pessimistic, I could see how I would think the guy was deliberately taking a break to slow down his opponent.

I just don't believe a lot of people do "mean" things intentionally.   My heart tells me that the guy just wanted to take a break because HE needed one.  I'm pretty naive, huh?  Or, do I just have a big heart?  I just don't think that way.

But, maybe I'm wrong.  Players do take breaks at "convenient" times, huh?

Thursday, January 22, 2015


I hadn't really thought of this before until I heard Tony Romo and Jason Witten mention it several times this past season, but POISE is an important part of playing well under pressure.

I don't think we stand up there at a table in a tough match of the finals and think, "Have poise, dammit."

Instead, what I think happens it poise is part of handling situations under pressure.

You don't see many people win matches or tournaments or games without some sort of poise.

Basically, Jason Witten, tight end of the Dallas Cowboys, said that the team made less mistakes this year because they had more poise.

What does poise do?  Poise is confidence.  Poise is not being nervous.  Poise is handling the pressure without mistakes.

You can imagine this well when we think about how the Cowboys had a better season this year.

What happens when time is running out is, quarterbacks will have more interceptions.  They rush and feel rushed.  They are trying to hard to get more points.

Poise with Romo and Witten and the rest of the team caused them to handle the pressure better; to still take their time.
Witten said, "I think we've always been tough. I think being poised is what we're doing a better job of. Not panicking when we're down at (the) half.
I think poise is what most champions have during important, stressful, pressure situations.  Actually, if you feel poise, then you don't feel pressure - you simply rise to the occasion and play well.  And further, you make less mistakes, too.

See Romo talking about their poise with this video clip.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Money Learning Experience

I had a very good learning experience this past weekend.

While running the Omega Tournament, a pool player, who I have known forever in the pool world, says he needs to talk to me.  He was out of the tournament on Saturday, but he was at the pool room on Sunday for some reason.  (I don't think he lives in the area, but he was still there for some reason)

Long story short, he wants to borrow $20.

I gave him $30 and said "Merry Christmas," because he said he wasn't sure when he could pay it back.  So, I kinda just gifted it to him.  He recently lost a family member and I felt bad.

A couple of hours later, he wants to talk again.

This time, we talk outside.

He asks for more money, saying he needed to go see his family, which I understood, and he said though that again he wasn't sure when he could pay me back.

He asked for $20, but I said to him, "Do you need more, though?  Would $30 help?"

He said yes and looked very solemn admitting it, looking at the ground.

I then asked honestly, "Do you need more?"  Realizing that most people who ask for money normally need more than $20 or $30.

I felt for him, as I know how it feels to lose a family member.  He said, "Yes, I could, but I want you to know I have no idea when I could pay it back."

I told him I understood.

He asked that we keep it between us (hence the reason for no mention of names).

Long story VERY short, I gave him a certain amount of money, and then found out later that that was the EXACT same amount he bet on a football game that afternoon.

He lied to me.

He also lost the bet.

But, I fell for it.

I fell for his lies.

And it was a HUGE learning experience for me.

Even as I type this, it's tough to even admit that I was swindled (well, I feel hustled). 

I didn't say anything to him after I found out.  Even though he was at the pool room into the evening hours, I just let him be.

I am hurt and kinda ashamed about it all, honestly. 

I figure the time will come when he asks again.  And at that next time, I will say no and explain politely why he CAN NOT borrow any money from me ever again.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Wanting Your Handicap to Go UP

I have run the Omega Billiards Tour for 2 1/2 years now and it's a very interesting thing to run a handicap tournament. 

Besides all the COMPLAINTS I get, there have been a few surprises.

Nice surprises.

I think I will see more of this as the tour gets older:

Some players WANT to move up.

The Omega Billiards Tour has a handicap from 5 to 9.

Almost all of the players are practicing more and getting more time in and want to improve IN THE TOURNAMENTS.

But there are some players that want to improve enough to where they get moved up with their handicap!

Wait, who does that?  Who wants that?

Man, I'd love to stay a 6 in this tournament the rest of my life.... but in reality, if I move up to a 7, what does that really mean?  That means I would be better than I am right now.  WOW!  However, I can't even fathom that.

But there are players who are rated as 5's that WANT everyone to see they are improving and WANT to do well enough that we have to move them up. 

It's an interesting concept really, because I don't know one single 7 or 8 that wants to move up to an 8 or 9.  Yes, they want to win a tournament.  Yes they want to do well and place well.  But they would rather not be moved up, lol.

The 5's that are improving, though, they want to improve enough to be FORCED to move up.

Interesting, huh?

Friday, January 16, 2015

Signing up for a Tourney Out of State

I had an odd moment today.

I found out about a tournament in Feb that I decided to play in, but I had to call and see if they had any openings left.

I was told to call "a Michelle."

This is in Oklahoma.

I know a coupe of Michelle's in Oklahoma, but would they know or remember me? 

So, I call the number and ask for Michelle.

And I said stupidly, "Hey Michelle, this is Melinda Bailey from Texas." 

I pause. 

Wait, that sounded weird.  Who cares where you are from and what your last name is, Melinda.

Under distress, I added, "Uh, do you know who I am?" 

Realizing all of a sudden that BOTH the statement and question were pretty stupid.

OMG, I wasn't even thinking how I worded all that - it just kinda came out that way!

And she says, "Oh hey, how are you?  Yea, I know you.  This is Michelle (         ).... " and she said her last name to me.

I was like, cool, we do know each other! 

Whew - what a relief!

And she reminded me we played in teams against each other in the finals in Vegas a couple of years ago.

Okay, cool, I'm not talking silly after all, haha!

We talked a couple of minutes and she told me there were six open slots, so then she signed me up.



Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Climbing That Ladder

I have learned after playing on the OB Cues Ladies Tour for over 15 years, that each little baby step in the tournaments comes with a little heartache and disappointment. 

I am seeing many guys go through this same situation as they play in more and more Omega Tour stops.

Since I run the tour, I see and hear a lot from the players.  They remind me of myself when I tried to climb the ladder of the regional Texas ladies Tour.

You play a few years or times and you are "one out of the money" a lot.

My nickname, personally for myself, was "One-of-the-Money-Melinda."

Then finally a breakthrough!

I got in the money!

Sure, it was last spot that paid money, but I got that envelope finally, even it was only $25!

Then, your goal is to get in the money again.

Then to get further into the money.

Then, your little goal is to last until Sunday.

But, once you finally GET to Sunday, Sunday is a whole new different tourney it seems.  You come in to the pool room and the caliber of players are MUCH better than all the ones you saw just the day before.  It's more intimidating to see the good players left.  They all made it to Sunday, too.  And they are TOUGH.

I found that it was tough to win that first Sunday match, too.

Tough to last until Sunday on the winner's side, too.

I honestly think it was a bigger hurdle to win that first ever elusive match on Sunday.  To finally make it to Sunday is one thing, but to keep playing well the next day and win a match (or more) seemed to be tougher for some reason.

Here's the heartache and disappointment part, though.  You finally make it to Sunday but you fall apart and don't play well.  I can't even begin to explain how awesome it feels to make it to Sunday, but then your nerves get to you and you can't even function enough to play pool, even half-assed, and you lose.

You finally make it!  then you lose. 

Or, you finally win that elusive match on Sunday and then lose to a weaker player due to mistakes and nerves, and you get ticked and upset about it all.  You could have done so much better!

With every baby step comes some turmoil with yourself. 


What you don't realize is EACH time something happens that does NOT advance you, helps you to advance in the future.  

I would make it to Sunday (on the Ladies Tour) and then finally win several matches, then lose because of nerves trying to out-do my previous high finish.

Or, I'd finally be on the winners on Sunday but then lose because of expectations.

To win a match on the winners side on Sunday took a while.

And each loss, was really an accomplishment - it was one step closer to a better finish!  But I never felt ecstatic about it.  I still didn't feel good after my "best" finish yet.  Why?  Because I lost.

See what I mean?

I had made mistakes.  I was nervous.  I didn't play well like I had in the previous matches, etc.

But then you make more progress the next tournaments because you learned from those losses.

Next thing I found myself playing FOR the hotseat.  I didn't win that match.

Then the next tourney, I advance to the hotseat for the first time!

And even those successes, comes other things to think about that get in your head.  You relax.  "I made it.  I finally made it into the hotseat.  Whew."

And the it's really your first time in the finals.

Crap, you don't play well. You might lose.

They say the second place finisher is the real winner because they learn SO much more than the first place winner ever will.  and I believe this 100%.

So, don't get discouraged after each successful baby step because you feel like you faltered and should have done better.  Realize it's a learning step for the next event.  Realize that it's a process.  Each step forward comes with a learning experience that will help you in the future!

So, letting you all know it's normal to feel bad after placing even better than before, even though it doesn't make sense sometimes. 

(It just means you are learning.)


Monday, January 12, 2015

Don't Label Shots

I try not to think of shots as tough or easy.

"Easy shots" lead to laziness (you shoot too fast or take the shot for granted).  "Tough shots" lead too many thoughts in your head that cause you to miss.

How about just look at it as "another shot."

I mean, you DO need to recognize when you need to take your time more or stroke more strokes before shooting the ball.  But, if you "label" your shots, it can be disruptive to yourself.

  • "Oh damn, I hate this shot."
  • "Oh, this is easy."
  • "Oh, I don't need to worry about shape with this shot."

Instead, just look at it as "another shot" that you do not label.  Instead, focus on your pre-shot routine and your pattern, not about what type of "shot" it is that may affect the outcome before you even shoot!

Give the shot 100% effort, and stick to your dependable pre-shot routine!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Safeties are Important Shots, too

One thing I learned over the years was that I was not giving my safeties due respect.

And I wasn't giving them as much attention as I did with all my other shots.

Treat them the same:
  • Walk around the table.
  • Take your time shooting them.
  • Use your pre-shot routine.

I have failed on many safeties because I didn't give them the credit that they deserved.  Kind of like the same credit you give a 9-ball in a match.

They are important.

It could lead to ball in hand.

Or, if you don't give it enough attention, you could leave them a shot to where they kick safe against you and then YOU are hooked, forced to kick back. 

Don't just hook them, FREEZE them up against another ball.

Don't be lazy or sloppy.

Don't be like I used to be with safeties.  They are a key part to our game and key component in our box of tools.  Use it wisely and smart.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Come with a Shot

Sometime you are left with a really tough shot.

Sometimes, under pressure.

Sometimes, where everyone is watching you.

And sometimes, you just have to "come with the shot."

I have had instances where I find myself looking at a critical shot.  Sometimes you just have to suck it up and tell yourself to come with it. 

"Come on Melinda, just come with it."

I was given this advice a long time ago, and every once in a while when I find myself faced with a tough shot, I say that to myself.  Not tough - but critical and tough.  There IS a difference.

I'm not putting pressure on myself, I feel like I'm pumping myself up and giving myself support.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Advice Given to Others

Sometimes I am not sure if I should give advice or not.

Sometimes I feel like it's not my place, other times I think,  I wish someone would have told me that long ago.  Other times, I don't know the player, so I prolly shouldn't say anything.

But, I opened my mouth at the scotch doubles tournament that I played in last week.

One of my friends was playing with a girl I had never seen before.  He told me she LOVES the game and he had been helping her with shots and things.  And so they decided to play together.

When I say 'LOVES' I mean she has the pool bug bad.  You know - we have all been there when we live and breathe pool when we first start playing.  Sure, it's on our minds now as well, even with seasoned players, but it pretty much is all we think of when we first get the "pool bug."

They won a few matches and while I didn't really see her play a lot, I did watch her this one game.  She stayed down well, made a lot of shots, and also carried herself well for being new to the game.

This one match she also chose the correct balls (the game was 8 ball) and it was a joy to see!

Then she was set up on the 8-ball and she shot it fast, and missed it.  She took her time on all the other shots in that game.  I immediately thought to myself, "I remember doing that."

Later on in the day, I saw them watching matches and I approached her.

I complimented her game and made some small talk, and then suggested to her that if she strokes more under pressure or when nervous, she will make more crucial balls.  And she replied, "Like that 8 ball I missed."

I was taken by surprise she noted the shot I was talking about.  I told her I was sorry I said something, but I had wished someone would have told me this 20-25 years ago!

She seemed receptive to my advice, so I explained more:

I told her she stayed down on all the other shots and stroked more except that one.  I mentioned it's VERY key to be aware you are nervous, breathing fast, feel pressure, adrenaline going, because that's when you will know to stroke a few more times (instead of shooting fast b/c of adrenaline which causes misses).

She thanked me and then I went back to my seat, wondering if I should have said something.

The next day I get a text from her partner, "Thank you for coming over and talking to her yesterday.  She needed another perspective of the game other than mine.  It will make a difference in the future."

I told him I felt bad, like I shouldn't have said anything b/c I didn't want to make her feel bad that I noticed she missed the 8 ball.

He replied, "She was excited that someone of your caliber even noticed and took the time to talk to her about the game.  It was well received."

What, really??  My caliber?  He said that?


I asked him how did she know I played okay?

He said, "She's heard a lot of people talk about your accomplishments."

WOW, really?   That made me feel awesome!

Then told him I was glad she took my comments well - it meant a lot he passed that on to me, too!

How cool!  :)

Saturday, January 3, 2015


I mentioned I played in a scotch doubles tournament.  They listed no "Masters" or "KA"s could play.

KA.  Known Ability.

Boy, that turned out to be something else!

They weren't going to let several players play (including myself) but then someone came up with an idea that KA's could just add one game to their race.

I asked my partner about it.

He said, "well, what is the race."

"Uh, they don't know yet."

He said, "Let's play anyway."

I didn't want to!  I wanted to be defiant!  (Is that the correct word?)

I was miffed, I admit, because they were questioning my partner and wanted to have us go an extra game.

I told them that my partner didn't play as good as another guy that was playing.  But they said HIS partner wasn't that good (ouch), so they let them play together.

And then they told me I was Master/Advanced.  Ugh.  I had to point out I'm NOT a master in ANY league.  Advanced only in ACS (not even BCAPL).

But then when they explained that most couples were very amateur levels and that they just didn't want us to scare the other players, I calmed down a bit.

I decided to play and get some good practice in.

I show up and I see /several/ teams that should ALSO race to one extra game.  One team they already talked to, the other they hadn't considered and the consensus was they should, also. 

It was actually a very TOUGH tournament. 

So, even though there were suppose to be very amateur teams, it was instead quite tough!  Wow.

And the race t was 2 on each side, but three teams (including that of my partner Jesse and I) had to go to 3 on each side.

As I mentioned on my previous blog post, we placed 3rd out of 20 teams.  We played real well together.  TOUGH tourney and tough teams! 

Friday, January 2, 2015

How Do You Know Me?

I played in a scotch doubles tournament on New Years Day.

My "regular" partner, Marty, was out of town so I had to find a new partner.  His name was Jesse and he and his girlfriend were kind enough to spend the afternoon with me playing pool.  Jesse and I played real well together and placed 3rd, even at 12:30am in the morning.  YAWN.  And that's after starting the tourney at about 2pm!

There were 20 teams and they had a calcutta.

The first blind bid goes for $80.  A guy in a blue shirt gets it and he's asked, "who do you want?"

His reply was, "Melinda."

Wait, what?

First of all, I have a partner.  It's not just "Melinda."

Secondly, I had no idea who this guy was!

I asked a few people his name.  Checked to see if maybe we were friends on FB, and that's how he knows me.  Nope, we weren't.  But, he knew me, and bid on me (us).  How did he know I played good pool?  I'm saying it like "that" because he didn't say "Jesse and Melinda."  He just said my name.

And if we were friends on FB I would understand how he knows me, but we weren't so....?

It's really weird to me when people know who I am and yet I don't know who they are. 

Unfortunately, we didn't make him any money (only got $90 for 3rd place calcutta money), but he sweated our matches most of the day - but it really did get late and when we got our money at 12:30am, he wasn't around anymore so the tourney director kept his half for him.

I wish we would have won it! 

Here is my friend Tammy at the table, contemplating her shot: