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What a ride THAT was.
I posted 78 times and since I’m not the kind to stick to a project and see it through (cue murmurs of agreement from parents and teachers), averaging more than a single post a week is damn near miraculous. Granted, not all of them were posts with substance (indeed, some of them were Notes From Management letting you know I wasn’t going to post) but most of them gave you a decent excuse to procrastinate at whatever you needed to procrastinate at. Start up the orchestra, dim the lights, and let’s go down yet another Memory Lane. (By the way, all links open in a new window.)
If I said 2011 was a slightly contentious year for me, it would be a massive understatement.
|I’m perpetually surprised, and grateful, that this blog has the readership and support that it does. I’ve met some readers in person and some I only know through emails and comments. I greatly appreciate the financial support some of you have provided by participating in my raffles (ah, how I miss The Greatest Cereal Bowl Of All Time — but it is in good hands now) or purchasing items from my etsy store. Your donations and purchases make you all my stakehorses and for this — I thank you.|
However, some of you have found out that no matter how much you donate to my mission in billiards, it does NOT give you the right to dictate how I live my life, how I should play my game, nor how much attention you believe I am required to give you in exchange. Let’s go over a fraction of what I ran into this year over this blog.
For f#ck’s sake, dude: I was playing in the U.S. Open and you knew this. Answering emails — about buying you shirts, dragging said t-shirts back to California after the event, and then mailing them out-of-country to you — within 24 hours WAS NOT a priority at the moment. Your passive-aggressiveness was pretty damn awesome and showed me what kind of person you were.
Trying to convince me I should fall in love with you and meet your mother within hours after first meeting you is just — well sh#t — that’s why this blog is titled the way it is.
One of you even triggered my first rantastic post of 2010 (“say anything”). This led to me writing a very personal account about a past event that made me the monster I am today (“in my mind’s eye”). I rarely share that kind of personal information but I figured it would be worth it to pass on the understanding. I am intolerant, boneheaded, and — this is still one of my favorite “insults” bestowed upon me — a “militant, fundamentalist pool player”.
I refund donations from people who try to pull this sh#t with me. I don’t want you supporting someone you don’t have faith in, or think will one day be more romatically interested in you than in the game. Thank you but no, thank you. There are plenty of other pool players who will fit your needs and your money would be better off funding them.
I know what I am, I know what I want to be, I know how I want to accomplish it all, and no promises of money, love, fame, or greatness can sway me from my path. Friedrich Nietzsche said it best:
The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.
I’m an uncompromising asshole but I have a wild guess that perhaps those who enjoy reading my blog enjoy it precisely because I handle situations like an uncompromising asshole.
|Being an uncompromising asshole does have its benefits. For example, when, some f#cker decides to grope me and run (“the best kind of sandwich”) my uncompromising assholity goes into
|It feels good, man.|
|Especially when the official justice system pretty much does nothing (“40,000”).|
One lesson I DID learn this year that was repeatedly repeated (in a seriously serious manner) by just about everyone was Always F#cking Post.
|A ghetto-fabulous famewhore by the name of Jessica “Asia” Cycak from the East Coast agreed to fly out to my side of the world for a race to 21 for $2,000 (“euthanASIA is too good for her”).|
|She had seen me play and knew my game. I had heard of her but did not know how she played at all. And I still decided to bet a nice chunk of my own money.|
Why? Because F#CK YOU that’s why. (Did you get that reference? Congratulations! That means I like you.)
When I was up 13-6, she said she was going to “take a break” but in reality, she ran away and took her money with her, leaving her cheap-ass cues and case behind. That’s some dishonorable chicken-sh#t, but that’s what happens when I don’t make her post. The internet exploded soon thereafter, and got even more entertaining once she tried to justify her actions.
Congratulations, Hairdildo — you got the fame you were seeking.
I didn’t travel much in 2011. I played in a couple of local tournaments (Seminole Pro Tour 10-Ball, Hard Times 10-Ball Open, TAD Cup, Chuck Markulis Memorial 9-Ball) and went as far east as Las Vegas for a few more (Andy Mercer Memorial 9-Ball and Western Women’s Charity 9-Ball, BCAPL National 8-Ball Championships, TAP National Championships). Part of this austerity was so I could save up enough money to play in the U.S. Open 9-Ball Championships (“cabbages & kings”). I had some run-ins with complete asshats at the Open where I did not exercise my usual uncompromising assholity out of respect for the game. These incidents disillusioned me enough that I quit playing pool.
|Although I had no desire to play pool, I still enjoyed watching it and I got to watch PLENTY of professional pool due in no small part to The Action Report’s TAR Studio, unveiled to the hacktastic masses in July 2011.|
|The first match was supposed to be “David “Viffer” Peat vs Chris “Smooth Criminal” Bartram, but that fell through (as high-stakes action matches sometimes do).|
|However, that slot for Badass Inaugural Match was soon filled by TAR 21 featuring Alex “Lion” Pagulayan vs Shane Van Boening (I’m doing away with entering Shane’s nickname and proposing we give him single-name status like “Cher” or “Madonna”).|
|TAR 21 | Shane Van Boening d. Alex Pagulayan, 100-84|
|TAR 22 | Shane Van Boening d. Earl Strickland, 75-67|
|TAR 23 | Oscar Dominguez d. Raj Hundal in three sets: 25-16, 15-25, 25-19|
If I’m going to gloat about anything from 2011, it’s the
redonkulous zedonkulous amount of elite pool I was able to watch and report back to all of you from the Studio (also going to start referring to the TAR Studio as the Studio — eliminates redundancy and elevates cachet). So, without further ado:
|gloat gloat gloaty gloat gloat|
I also went to the Mosconi Cup, which was conveniently bundled with TAR 23 (“zedonkulous”).
Okay, I’m done.
2011 wasn’t all rantastic, idiot-filled high-level tournaments and gambling. Thanks to you, gentle reader, I attempted humor (“you have chosen the way of pain”), nostalgia (“marching ever onward”, “pearman”, “evolution”), insight (“walk the line”, “your mileage may vary”) and cookery.
|Well, I didn’t attempt cookery.|
|I executed that sh#t like a boss.|
|Among this year’s Cooking Class posts were Bolognese Sauce (“Once Sauce To Rule Them All”), French Onion Soup (“a crust of brown bread & an onion in a corner”), and Boeuf Bourguignon (“good sh#t”).|
|I love that some of you have emailed or commented to let me know you’ve tried the recipes out and found them to be good. Warms my heart and tummy.|
New additions to the blog included the Community Blog Series (where you picked the topic and I rambled on about it at length), 150 & Out (snapshots of my life in 150 words or less), and the 10+1 interviews with industry peeps.
There you have it. That’s what I can remember of 2011, blog-wise. Thanks to all of you who have recommended or shared my posts with others. It’s nice to hear from new readers — even the ones that try to convert me to their line of thinking (futile) or the ones that revile me (free speech all the way). Extra thanks to those who have donated to my table time fund and/or provided me with amazing opportunities. I sincerely hope I am, and will remain, worthy of your faith.
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