June 29, 2010
One of us is going to Vegas this summer. Twice, actually.
It never fails that when one forges ahead and makes plans to spend a long weekend in Vegas with spectacularly wonderful company, that roughly an hour after one buys that plane ticket, one will find out that one’s pool team is, in fact…
going to the show.
Awww yeah, baby. I’ll be doing some winning with this, I think.
June 23, 2010
“Look, if you’re in such a hurry, you could lower a rope or a tree branch, or find something useful to do.”
“I could do that. I got some rope up here, but I do not think you would accept my help, since I am only waiting around to kill you.”
“That does put a damper on our relationship.”
It’s safe now. The explosion has passed, thanks to the powers of catharsis and excellent musical suggestions from my friendly neighborhood gas pump. So, thanks for that.
I spent 23-24 hours in a pool hall last weekend, attempting to win a free trip to Vegas for me and my team. We’d almost locked it up the first day, but couldn’t quite close, and had to come back the second. After some hard-fought battles, we made it to the final round, where we ran into a team that wound up having some issues.
We were up 2 matches after the first 2 matches – so we had three more chances to win the last match we needed to get to go. I lost – which wasn’t entirely unexpected, and was a strategic move (playing me enabled my team to put up some higher skill level players). And then something became readily apparent.
The other team’s players were sandbaggers. All but one of them were blatantly under-ranked. And the last one? The one who won the last match to enable his team to come back and win the round? Nobody who legitimately holds the rank next to his name on the scoresheet can play as well as he did. And the referees saw.
And so, we mentioned it to the local league authority. Who then talked to the team, and couldn’t get a straight answer out of any of them about, well, anything. They claimed that some of them weren’t legally able to travel, so they couldn’t field a full team in Vegas. And then they said never mind, they’d rent a van and drive there, if they couldn’t get on a plane. And then, they admitted that their last player could probably be ranked at least two levels higher than what the scoresheet said.
Except, that if you go up two or more levels in this kind of tournament, your team gets disqualified.
Basically, every member of that team was playing dirty pool. And so now, we’re waiting to hear whether the national HQ for the league is going to disqualify them and give us the slot for Vegas, or, well… not.
I hate waiting.
June 21, 2010
Don’t ever think about me again. Don’t ever think about anything that might lead you to think about me again.
Don’t come here and read what I write.
Don’t talk to people I know, and mention my name in an artfully casual manner, just to see what they might have to say.
While we’re at it, don’t say my name at all.
There has been a strong correlation between how much better my life has gotten, with less of you in it. Statisticians be damned, I’m going to go with causation on that one – so stay the fuck away.
You will never, ever, have the foggiest notion of what is actually going on in my life, if I can help it. So don’t ever start rumors about me in any capacity, because you will be wrong and I will hear about it, and it will just make me want to tell people the truth about you.
Truths like how you propositioned me while you knew I was in a serious, committed relationship – and while you were living with your then-girlfriend.
Truths like how you think that people are things you can barter – something you tried to do TWICE, though you thought I only knew about the first time.
Truths like how you’re willing to stab anyone in the back if you think it will get you laid.
Truths like how you’re willing to lie for the sole purpose of making others feel bad.
Truths like how you’re a shitty excuse for a person, and how absolutely nobody deserves to have you inflicted on them.
So, please stop reading. Close your browser, go elsewhere, and just leave me alone. Because I am a good person, and don’t deserve this bullshit.
And, kindly fuck off and die.
June 8, 2010
and maybe delivers a tiny little PSA:
1) Guess who has two thumbs and no cancer, for sure (for now)?
2) Jagerbombs are never a good idea. Especially on a Monday.
3) Playing pool (or doing pretty much anything) well is a great way to take your mind to a more positive place. Once you start handling one thing well, no matter how trivial it is, the rest of everything seems a little less daunting, somehow.
4) This does not make me any less apprehensive about the Furniture Assembly Project I have scheduled for this weekend. Regardless of the sweetgum tree’s intentions, I suspect bruising will be involved.
5) I’m stocking up on bubble bath and Viognier. These are always good things to have on hand, when bruising is anticipated.
May 21, 2010
Sorry. I’ve been busy being thinky. Because sometimes, you just have to think about things for a long time, even if you kind of know what the outcome should be, because thinking about it will make you okay with the outcome, whereas if you didn’t give yourself enough time to think, you’d be anxious about it FOREVER.
Gmail is being aggravating, in that it keeps locking me out of my email account, which could mean that someone is trying to hack into my account which would suck. But in the meantime, I can’t GET at anything, and it is SO ANNOYING.
Enough with the shouting. On the plus side, I have more tournaments in my future, because my teams are apparently comprised entirely of rockstars (I think I sneaked on as “equipment manager” or some such), and I can spend my whole weekend restoring order to my world, and things like this:
May 18, 2010
I won my first match with my new Monday night league, and one of my Thursday teams made it to the finals, so at least I’ve got that going for me.
However, I forgot the middle part of my sandwich this morning. I’m staring at a ziplock baggie holding two slices of whole wheat bread, with nothing in between.
Which simply means that instead of sitting at my desk all day, I shall brave the drizzle and find myself some tasty sandwich middle.
May 7, 2010
Last night, I played twice. I won one, I lost one.
I was annoyed at my coaches both times. But the one I’m still mad about, was the one where my coach essentially told me that I was going to lose, so I should use the game as a learning experience, and experiment with different types of shots/English that I don’t normally take. I missed my very next shot, and lost.
Now, I’m not an idiot, or illogical, most of the time. And I knew I was going to lose – the girl I was playing was on a completely different level (we can discuss her ranking/sandbagging/completely snotty attitude later).
But there’s something about someone else saying out loud – someone who was supposed to be on my team – that completely demoralized me. And afterward, I told him I thought that was a jerky thing to do – and it was implied that I was overreacting, that I was taking it the wrong way.
I don’t know. I think that in general, unless you have something to say that will get me closer to winning the game at hand, maybe you can just shut the hell up. Telling me that I’m going to lose under the guise of “taking the pressure off” doesn’t survive a cost-benefit analysis.
April 9, 2010
Guess where I was last night! Guess! Guess!
If you said, “somewhere in Northern Virginia playing pool”, you’d be right.
I played (and won!) two matches pretty early on, then stayed to socialize and practice for a bit. I got caught up in conversation with a guy who walked up and asked if we were playing in a league. I replied in the affirmative, and then we started to talk about (1) pool, and (2) New Orleans, where he was from and where I’ll be going, soon.
The conversation was pleasant enough, but had been going on for kind of a while. At one point, he thanked me for talking to him so much. And at several points, I noted with envy that one of my teams was doing shots over by their table, that people I wanted to catch up with were gathering up their things.
So when the gentleman excused himself to use the restroom, I popped over to chat with my other team, towards the back of the bar. And when he emerged, he looked around. I think he saw me. And then he left.
And yes, it was exactly what it looked like. He gave me an opportunity to slip away, and I bolted. Because we’d been talking for over an hour, ferpete’ssake. But I still feel like I was less kind than I might have been – as though I should have said something, that it was nice to meet him, at least. Ugh.
I don’t like feeling unkind.
March 26, 2010
So, about two years ago, I joined my second 8-ball team. I was invited to join – scouted, even, because it was an all-female team and they needed a player with a relatively low handicap. So I started to play a second night, which everyone thought would help my game a lot.
Except… it didn’t. My record for that season was abysmal – I became, essentially, cannon fodder – whenever the other team put up a really high handicap player that would be a risky match for our high handicap players, I’d play, because I was probably going to lose anyway, and that left our skilled players to play matches they’d win.
The captain at the time – we’ll call her Regina, was pretty obviously disappointed. She’d relied on two other teammates’ reports of my abilities, and seemed to think that they’d exaggerated. A lot. And she is, apparently, the kind of person who doesn’t see much reason to spend time on someone who can’t offer what she wants in return.
I took it personally – which didn’t help my game any, at least not on the nights I played with that team. So when she moved away, I breathed a huge sigh of relief, glad that I’d be able to relax and enjoy my nights with that team.
Regina came back for a visit last night – when I heard she’d be there, I was on edge. I wondered whether she’d still sit there, silently (but obviously) judging my skills and finding them lacking all over again. Fortunately, I won my match, extra nerves notwithstanding. I even made a couple of killer shots in order to do so. And Regina was very complimentary.
But what struck me, was that I’d convinced myself that she was someone I wouldn’t be friends with, that she didn’t like me at all. And that I didn’t like her very much. And then, when she showed up, she came over to give me a hug, and seemed genuinely happy to see me, warm and friendly. She asked questions about my life that showed she’d cared enough to remember.
It’s so easy to demonize someone – my brain is apparently quite capable of tunnel vision in the negative. Which is kind of scary, when you realize how easy it therefore is to spend entirely too much time thinking negative thoughts, when we could all just relax and focus on what we can enjoy about each other.
February 26, 2010
Of course, three out of three would have been better. I played one regular match and two makeup matches last night (thank you, O Terrible Gods of Snow and Cold), and managed to recover from my loss to win my two regularly scheduled matches.
While I was playing well, I was definitely off my game – part of which, I suspect, was because I had worn my glasses all day and then switched to contacts in order to play (playing in my glasses would NOT have gone well, because of the aforementioned peripheral vision issues). My eyes were, I think, still adjusting to the change.
Oh, and the terrible, awful, no-good, very bad headache didn’t help matters.
The whole night was strange, though. And the strangeness started when I walked in, took off my coat, started chatting with my teammates, and was interrupted by another player from another team – an older gentleman, who’d tried to make conversation with me before, and who not only has problems remembering my name, but who seems like he’s potentially interested in breaking my rule. So I’ve been cordial, but not particularly friendly.
So this guy, whom we’ll call Louis (pronounced the French way), interrupted my conversation to thrust a box of tapes (like a book-on-tape box) into my hand, and explain that they were readings of some of the most important Supreme Court decisions. And he said that they were by way of an apology for something unkind he’d said a few weeks prior.
I have no recollection of anything kind, or unkind, that this man might have said. Which makes me think that he perhaps didn’t say it to me, but was afraid it might get back to me. Which makes me wonder what, exactly, it WAS that he might have said.
However, I’ve learned the hard way that I’m usually much better off not knowing. Because the things people say when they’re not thinking about who might eventually hear them? Can be really and truly awful.
So, I’m just going to listen to the words of the Supreme Court Justices – because they are, in general, highly intelligent people who were, I suspect, very much aware that large numbers of people were going to be reading and listening to the things they said.