I Love My Pool Life:   The Tallahassee Squirrel

I love my pool life. I consider myself fortunate. Every day is a new possibility to get a new story; every road leads back to the game of billiards. So many paths I’ve been down, and the rabbit hole of the billiards world runs deep, so many people and figures in the sport, it’s a cornucopia of interesting avatars that represent so many world-beating legends.

I’m a freelance writer. I work for myself. However, the powers that be at InsidePool have taken an interest in me and what I have to offer the sport of pocket billiards, as I attempt to regale the billiards community on Facebook, worldwide.

Music has always been a big part of my life, and for many other pool players I believe as well. As I write this, I’m jamming out to some Ozzy Osbourne, ‘Crazy Train.’

“Maybe, it’s not too late, to learn how to love, and forget how to hate…I’ve listened to preachers, I’ve listened to fools. I’ve watched all the drop-outs, who make their own rules…I’m going off the rails on a crazy train!” — Ozzy.

So, when I play pool, sometimes I like to Jam the Bluetooth headphones, and rock out cordless. I like the old school, big muff headphones. When I play the game, locked in, at my best level, has been with the headset on, the music up, my stroke on, and lights out run outs — at any rate, not like John Schmidt or someone, but on the level, jam-up pool for any top amateur player. It’s taken me a long time to get to this point in my game where I can just coast and enjoy, just be glad to have achieved my own personal best, as perfect as I personally could ever “perfect” my game, but not like so many of these great champions I write about, don’t get me wrong about that. They are on another planet, and I am a martian. (Laughing haughtily)

This is the best gig in the game as far as I’m concerned — from my personal perspective — why? Because I get to write about the game of pool, writing being my first love, pool being my second favorite; put them together, and you have my “dream job.”

And it is work, covering the game, and it does tire me out, but it is a welcome weariness, having produced something I feel is substantial, something to add to the game and not detract. This is a new diatribe on the pool prowess of writing articles in the spirit of Benjamin Franklin himself, covering it with a voice and passion unlike what has been seen in recent, modern times.

Three hundred and sixty degrees I revolve; I see everything around me, and exist in the ethereal realm of so many colliding pool balls in infinite space and time, the physics of the game, philosophy of pool, psychology of billiards, mental game, muscle memory, hours of table time, the players, the…I digress, always and perpetually I go further beyond the shadow of light and dark, the yin yang of pocket billiards, and into the sun. (This is a creative interpretation pool piece presented to you by Patrick. Hope you like what you see.)

This is all of me, my soul, my heart, I wear it on my sleeve like Earl Strickland! Lay it on the line! Full throttle! All in! That’s how I play the game, always in the dreams of pool I dream at night, play by the glow of a silver jukebox, and sashay like so many dervish dancers, these phantom, ghost pool hall junkies!
‘Mr. Crowley’ Now plays on my headphones, and I think about how I used to play a little rock guitar myself. The cue stick itself is an instrument in the hands of an artist with so many of these brilliant players I cover, many of which I’m fortunate enough to call friends.

So many great people in the game. Ignore the detractors, naysayers, all the people that would bring the game down, make it a hateful affair, troll the players, game. That’s not what I wish to bring to the game, players, the sport at large in the worldwide pool family that exists, and is growing, expanding every day, as the younger generation continues to see how dynamic it is, and how much reward it is to pursue for those fortunate enough to possess that type of ability.

I’ve played a few open events over the years, and twice made it one round out of the money and day two, Sunday. In one tournament, Tommy Kennedy complimented me. Three or four times, I’ve blanked players on the loser’s side in day one 7-0, which is substantial for me personally, because so many of these players are top notch table technicians, world beaters, and some pros.

Yeah, like I’ve said and keep saying, I love my pool life, am thankful every waking day of my life. At about age 8 I experienced pool for the first time at the local pup my father would frequent, his friend “Pollock” showing me a bit about the game. Back then, kids could go into bars apparently. My life was forever changed in that single moment. One single event can change everything, and that’s part of my main point. Carpe Diem! Seize The Billiards Balls! Oh wait! That’s not right. At any rate, always and forever, keep hitting them balls players, and crank up the volume on those headphones to maximum volume as you enjoy the game and see what I’m saying, and hear the tracks I’m rocking. My hairs on fire, and I’m set to set the pool world aflame, forever changed, rearranged, written in stone — I send my ripple out into the pond with the hammer of Thor himself. All hail the pool gods: Reyes, Strickland, Varner, Mosconi, Shaw, SVB, Woodward, Hatch, Williams, Wilson, etcetera!
More to come soon! Extra! Extra! Read all about it!