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The Adventures of FastMikie
in search of Truth and Beauty in the art of pocket billiards.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Miscellaneous Catching up

Maybe I'm too busy with facebook to do a better job of reporting, but in the interests of completeness and transparency (which seems to be a new buzz word), there are a few random bits for the record.

1. In the first of the recent three tournament wins in a row, the worthy opponent was a guy I had never seen before, John H. In the finals, for the last game, I broke and ran out. He never got out of his chair. Bummer way to lose, but a great way to win. So to see what he had going for him I invited him over to shoot some pool at the Fun House, and he chose 9-ball. I don't remember the score, dammit, and that's why I should be writing this stuff down as it happens. Maybe I'll do an iPhone app for keeping scores... In any case, I do remember that I played pretty good and won convincingly. He's a good dude. Into radio controlled airplanes.

2. In the second of the recent three tournament wins in a row... there ya go again... I can't remember the details, so if you were in the finals of that 8 ball tournament a couple of weeks ago, and you want me to mention your name here, as the guy who came in second, just let me know. Maybe I'll remember later, and maybe I'll remember that I forgot it, and maybe I'll come back here and write it here, and nobody will ever know because nobody reads this stuff anyway.

3. In the last, most recent of the 3 wins in a row, the big Quarterly Tournament, which gets my name on the plaque on the wall, thereby granting me immortality in some very small degree... the worthy opponent was "Ball in Hand" Benny. He is a lot of fun. When he makes a great shot, and when he misses, he says "I love this game!". Gotta like a guy like that. Anyway, I played good, and so did he, but I won.

4. When Samm was in town, we played some pool here at the Fun House. In 9 ball, and she won 9-5 and we played some straight pool and I won 50-27. She was using the ICEBREAKER break cue and getting some great action with it. My break was not working at all.

5. Samm Diep and I played in the Hard Times tournament up in Los Angeles, and we both did the 0-2 barbecue. I could not get motivated, and I was not pleased with my performance. Objectively, I should be able to win against both of those players. But not this Sunday.

6. Mike R. called me out on my facebook page, so I messaged back "Bring it on..." and the match took place at time that couldn't have been more poorly chosen, and amazingly, I'm the one that chose the time! How did I get to be this old and still be an idiot? Maybe I was being efficient by trying to schedule lots of things to happen all on the same day, so I can have the other days all to myself (which is what we hermits do), but I wound up scheduling a pool match...

a) immediately after a lunch appointment with one of my favorite female friends, so this guarantees that my mind will be completely unfocused on pool. Usually I will clear my entire day leading up to a tournament. More time for preparation.

b) at the same time when my assistant Carol would be here working. Her cooking is always a distraction in a very good way, but not if I need to be shooting some serious pool. Since it was her last day before her vacation, there were extra details to be dealt with, and of course this did not help my focus.

c) at the same time as I had scheduled a plumber to do some maintenance. Isn't that the most bone-headed thing to deal with during a pool match? It seemed that every 10 minutes the plumber would be missing a part, need to make a call, needed to ask a question, or just wanted to watch a few shots!

What was I thinking to have scheduled this perfect storm of madness? Needless to say, and as much as I choke on the saying of it, and in the spirit of full disclosure, transparency, and such, and as I agreed that I would so do, I am giving the score of the match in the smallest of font sizes because I refuse to admit it into my reality, so here: (9-ball, 7-5, 7-3) Didn't see that? Well try highlighting that area with your cursor... In any case, I do have to admit that he was breaking well and getting plenty of opportunities for early outs with combinations. It seemed that all I could think of was how stupid I am for scheduling this match for such conditions.

It occurred to me that a wise man would have chosen a more appropriate time for combat, and then it hit me... these are the words of Sun Tzu in his classic "The Art of War":

Thus we may know that there are five essentials for victory:
He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight.
He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces.
He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all ranks.
He will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared.
He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered with by the sovereign.

Italics in the above are mine, to indicate where I screwed up. Maybe I'll remember next time.

7. The $20 gift certificate for pizza which I won in the last tournament (I would have preferred a trophy), I intended to use to treat the guys in that tournament. When I called to order a couple of large pizzas, it was $37. What the heck. Hope they enjoyed it.


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