|all links open in a new window|
Have you missed reading? I have. Here’s a few I had time to read in between all the Spartan madness…
|« G R A N D E »|
|The Snail Wrangler|
|“It took at least, I’d say, 15 years to learn how to raise them and grow them and get the job done right,” Ms. Stewart said. “Because there were really no books on it.”|
|The Most Spectacular Mutation in Recent Human History|
|How did milk help found Western civilization.|
|« T R E N T A »|
|The Island Where People Forget to Die|
|Today, three and a half decades later, he’s 97 years old — according to an official document he disputes; he says he’s 102 — and cancer-free. He never went through chemotherapy, took drugs or sought therapy of any sort. All he did was move home to Ikaria.|
|glue & paint fumes in the wee small hours of the morning|
Every once in a while, I go through spells of insomnia and I find crafting is a good way to get through those times. If I can’t sleep, I might as well do something productive. (I have yet to be sleepless enough to do Responsible Things, though — and probably never will.)
I’m slowly but steadily working through a bunch of ceramics commissions. The newest batch is turning out well. I’ve figured out a new system for lettering that is WAY cooler than my handpainted sh#t from before. Behold:
These mugs were made for two locals who play 14.1 against each other, like, ALL THE TIME. No other game, ever — just good ol’ noble straight pool. I like this new lettering style SO MUCH except that 1). it’s a f#cking bitch to do and 2). it’s so easy to mess up during painting I get panic attacks.I won’t be selling any mugs with this style of lettering. I’ll either be gifting them or putting them up for raffles.
I like seashells, sparkly things, and not painting ceramics all the time. I have to change up my crafty projects or I’ll get burnt out on one medium and hate it for a while. Recently, I went with a friend to a craft store during a big sale and saw this nice little stand:
A dollar. I could afford that — especially with a 40% off coupon! After a little sanding and some planning, I painted it and added some odds and ends I had laying around and this was the result:
I have plans for another frame with different seashells and I’ll get on that as soon as I get another 40% off coupon in the mail.
|how rakish of him|
|that was rather unnecessary|
I posted recently about the Chuck Markulis Memorial Tournament. During that tournament, Ronnie Alcano and Oscar Dominguez met up in a winner’s side match played on the streaming table. A reader had this comment and question regarding that match:
I was watching the stream while you were at the mike and saw Ronnie Alcano scatter Oscar Dominguez’s rack with his stick – what was your take on that and did you think Alcano was out of line? The Fils are usually so polite, that seemed way out of character.
The format of the tournament is rack-your-own, with the 9-ball made on break in the bottom two pockets not counting as a win.
Mr. Alcano is not out of line for questioning the rack, or even asking for a re-rack. That is every opponent’s right in a match, and certainly players can get anxious regarding rack-your-own. From what I understand, the complaint was that Mr. Dominguez was intentionally racking the 1-ball high on the spot. I believe you can rack anywhere as long as the 1-ball is on the spot. A rack spot is a little more than an inch wide, so you actually have quite a bit of room.
Mr. Alcano was out of line regarding the manner in how he expressed his disagreement. There was no conceivable reason for him to let Mr. Dominguez rack, and then just scatter the balls with his cue. The act is rude and dismissive.
If you want a re-rack, ask for it. If after some tries (there should be an official amount, but I usually say four honest attempts) both sides still do not agree, then a neutral racker both players agree upon (often a tournament director or referee, but I have also seen other players or audience members utilized with permission from the tournament director) should be available to rack the balls.
In the end, Mr. Dominguez asked Mr. Alcano to rack them to his satisfaction. Mr. Alcano did, and then Mr. Dominguez laughed because he had racked them at the same spot Mr. Dominguez did, which was slightly higher than the absolute center of the spot. I had played on that table earlier so this was not a surprise to me. The tables were freshly covered in new cloth and that means no established divots for the balls to settle into. When I played, I had to rack just a little high on the spot to keep the 1-ball from rolling forward.
I hate seeing stuff like this in pool. You would most likely not see a golfer complain about how close someone else’s tee is by walking over after his opponent has set his ball, and then poking it off the tee with his club. But, guess what, someone might say, we’re not playing golf here. No sh#t, and boy do the payouts and media coverage show it. Small, petty rudenesses like poking the racked balls from your seat with your cue after your opponent has racked makes pool look like exactly what it is to the mainstream media — a small, petty game played by insignificant people.
The Filipinos are “usually so polite”, you say. That may be true regarding your experiences with them, but people treat other people differently. (You could ask my friends, enemies, random well-meaning strangers, and/or people I have beat the f#ck up.) Just like any other regular person, they may have beef with other players that we do not know about. I do not know if there was prior bad blood between these two, but if they chose to settle it on table, they can do so with courtesy and sportsmanship towards each other. Afterwards, there’s always the parking lot (often my preferred venue).
Finally, the whole racking thing could just be a move to get into an opponent’s head. That would make me sad as it just further reinforces my previous belief that small, petty things make our noble sport look small and petty and that contributes to the small, petty amount of money in it.
[UPDATE]: A witness in the front row says Mr. Dominguez asked Mr. Alcano not to pattern-rack, and this may have contributed to Mr. Alcano’s criticizing Mr. Dominguez’s rack. Let’s have a beauty pageant and then we can all scrutinize and criticize each other’s racks.
Got a burning question? You should probably go see your doctor. But, if it’s related to pool (or not), and you want to know what my unprofessional opinion is, feel free to post in the comments section or email me and I’ll answer in a future post.
F#ck yes, it’s Friday.