Pool Cue

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On 8/21/2010 9:01 AM, Casper wrote:

Good story that brings back memories ... the thrill of the head game was exciting, and, after learning early the truism that no matter how good you are there is always somebody better, to hustle the hustler made it even more so.
If nothing else, taught you how to pick your battles. :)
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All these pool stories. OK Here's mine.
First of all, although I enjoy the game, I suck at it.
But when I was 19, there were a number of pool halls in the neighborhood. Also at that time I was part of a new, experimental program of "mainlining" deaf students into the community colleges. These kids have spent their entire lives institutionalized in deaf programs and schools throughout the country. I was their age, had a hearing problem, so was immediately accepted by them. They did not trust almost any adult and most hearing people. I became the liaison between the deaf kids and the staff there.
Two blocks from the school was a large pool hall. I was asked to "chaperone" a group of deaf kids for a pool hall visit. There was an older deaf guy who hustled there and met them there. What unfolded before my eyes was amazing and soon became local folklore.
It turns out that these kids were raised in environments where there was and abundance of pool tables. They have been practicing since they were children. And since most people think of deaf kids as being "slow" they made the perfect hustlers. My part in this scheme was to orient these budding hustlers to this new, garish pool hall environment. It took a little while for them to get there interaction with hearing people down. And they were not permitted outside of the dormitories at night at first.
But over about three months, they learned to blend in, And they started to let them out at night. They went to school during the day. The hustled pool at night. After awhile, they started hitting all the pool halls in town. And the average pool player in town soon was poorer for the experience. Some of those kids, who never help a regular job in their life, were buying cars with their earnings. They were taking cabs everywhere, eating in nice restaurants and wearing nice clothes.
They called me in to ask if I knew anything about it. I did not know how extensive it had become. After a few polite inquires, I told them to tone it down and not buy anything that would draw attention to themselves. Since I was "one of them", they took my advice. After all, I wasn't telling them to stop. Just cool it a little. I ran into some of those kids years later. They were still hustling pool. And it was a big portion of their income.
And they were grateful to me. They were kind enough to give me a few lessons. But I never had the eyesight or physical coordination for it. But I still like to play a game now and then.
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"Lee Michaels" <leemichaels*nadaspam* at comcast dot net> wrote

I'm 62, and have been playing pool since I was as tall as a pool stick, the requirement at the youth center where I learned to play. I always liked it, but to get over to the snooker tables, you had to prove yourself with "Pappy", a great pool player, and dominant male at the youth center. So, I learned from a master.
But still, it's like playing a musical instrument, shooting, or other things that involve ingrained talent. You either have it, or you don't. And after that, it's practice, practice, practice. Yes, eyesight and physical shape has something to do with it, mainly eyesight.
But it's like bowling. Anyone can do it, whether they suck or are good, but it's fun anyway.
Steve
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On 8/21/2010 4:18 PM, Steve B wrote:

You're right about it being like playing a musical instrument. You get in a groove, your "chops" are honed to razor sharp, and you back off playing for a while and you feel almost like you have to start over again. It's a great feeling when you know your chops are solid.
And that was indeed Willie Hoppe someone mentioned ... I think he also had an autographed cue stick that was much coveted. IIRC, both the Mosconi and Hoppe cues ran in the $75-100 range, which was a helluva lot of money in those days (early 60's).
So much so that I copied them by taking my two part custom el cheapo to the college industrial arts wood shop, chucking the handle up in the lathe and cutting a slight groove in the handle just deep enough to wrap it with braided fishing line.
Also bored a hole into the handle end and filled it with with two ounces of lead, making my store bought 22 oz a 24, with some inertia behind it.
This was after carefully sandpapering the barrel to just the right taper, with a very slight concavity to it, which I preferred.
Of course, if you walked in a strange bar with a custom two piece cue in a case, the hustle was either over, or just starting! :)
Most of the time it was best to leave it in the truck, until the nut cutting ...
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Swingman wrote:

I'm with you, but there was another Willi along about that time (early '60s) whose name I can't remember.
Lew
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Lew Hodgett wrote:

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"jo4hn" wrote:

Yep.
Thank you.
Lew
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William Frederick Hoppe was a true billiard champion. You don't hear much about him or Greenleaf and those guys anymore.
Another great player, IMHO, is one I affectionately call "Wille" but his real name is Nick Varner. A masterful Kentucky boy. Why do I call him Wille? Well it's because he always reminds me of Gene Wilder playing Wilie Wonka, having almost the hair style and body size.
`Casper
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Is this a temper tantrum thing after missing that important shot?
How, the hell, do you break a pool cue?
LOL
"Puckdropper" <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote in message
The pool cue just broke again. It's done it twice already, and I've repaired it with Titebond II. It broke once near the tip collar, once splitting down about 2 inches, and now it's broken near the tip collar again. There's no glue on the wood fibers, so it looks like the glue joint held.
I'm about to fix it a third time, but since it's breaking in the same place should I be looking at a different fix next time? I'd probably drill the center out and replace it with a dowel, but I'm open to suggestions.
Puckdropper
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Never teach your apprentice everything you know.



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Breaking with it can break the cue. Also, slapping someone up side the head will do it. Sometimes it will fall over, and crack, then the next hard shot, boink! If you want to break one, it can be done.
And then there's temper tantrums, too.
Steve ;-)
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No temper tantrums.
Wood has many interesting properties due to being alive at one time, and some of those appear to be coming in to play here. Each time this cue broke, it was after hitting the cue ball, so it's an impact along the grain type thing.
Puckdropper
--
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Puckdropper wrote:

I once accidentally broke a real cheapy over my knee in a college bar when the 8-ball went in the wrong pocket. I really didn't mean to break it. This real big bouncer dude, who didn't understand that it was an accident, asked me to pay him $15 or $20. I suspect that was probably health-insurance money well-spent.

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May have been a lot like some of the golf I have seen played....LOL
"Puckdropper" <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote in message

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On Aug 19, 5:58am, Puckdropper <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote:

Better take up golf. It's much harder (not impossible) to break a club and you have a lot of spares in the bag. And you get more exercise, too. Plus all that space in the rec room taken up by a big pool table that SWMBO uses for folding laundry...the list goes on <G>
Joe
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