triple distilled

for those that accepted my theory about the lack of money in pool (see here) . . . read on.  if not, run.

since i’ve postulated that there’s little or no financial reward in pool, we can now define what else we want from pool, seeing that money is no longer in the equation.

i think that for those that don’t define and accept what they want from pool, the journey can be a frustrating path.  of course, this is also related to my post about brutal honesty (see here).  i believe that once we define our role in pool (and vice versa), we can be much happier the next time we play.  probably works in other areas of our lives.

personally, i play pool mainly for enjoyment and relaxation.  while i seek improvement, i do it mostly for my selfish satisfaction.  as such, i define pool as a hobby in my life, since i’m not looking for monetary reward from pool, nor am i performing charitable deeds with pool.  i’ve no desire to turn pro (for a variety of reasons), nor have i the drive to become one.  however, i do incessantly study pool for its knowledge, so i consider pool as a very serious hobby, one where i look to learn the minutest nuances.  i’ve other serious hobbies as well; pool remains one of my major vices.

for this reason, i’m always happy to shoot (even though at times i may not look like it from the outside).  i’ve defined pool as one of my sources of happiness, so i’m happy when i play.  simple, no?

i think i think therefore i think i am, i think.  (thank you, dr. armour.)

for those with a mean competitive streak or who are professional-bound, i imagine the approach is much different.  i’m guessing there’ll be a lot less screwing around, and a lot more drills, tournaments and action games.  if you accept this as your lot in pool, then you can also be happy while you plug countless hours into self-torture tough practices to hone your skills into a razor’s edge.  ditto for social players, weekend warriors, and monday-morning quarterbacks.  🙂

to simplify, whatever you choose as your identify in pool, be happy in it.  the next time you make or miss, you can take it all in stride.

there’s also the theory of cognitive dissonance.  a person’s frustration derives from the discordance between the effort and the outcome (e.g., great effort for a small reward).  to reconcile this discordancy in your brain, you rationalize to make your efforts seem worth the output.  i’ve seen players do that: rationalizing about why they play.  however, i think that when you rationalize, you’ve stopped being honest with yourself, which can lead to greater frustration down the road.  i personally think it’s better to have that honest, painful look at your self so the hurt is minimized and temporary.  for example, if you don’t have the talent to turn pro, it’s better to realize that fact early on than to trap yourself in illusory hopes, only to have your unrealistic goals shatter in the future.  and vice versa.  the last thing in pandora’s box is hope, a thing that cuts both ways.  false hope can utterly destroy a person; we need to be mindful not to be trapped by it.

for those that don’t know what they want in pool, it may be helpful to get a clue.  unless not knowing what you want in pool IS what you want.  (this is the contrarian moment of zen.)

of course, i could’ve simplified this post by saying “be content with what you have” and “know what you want and be happy with it”, and save everyone loads of time.  but then, this post wouldn’t be worth your price of admission.

wait, you got in free.  s~*.  well, you’ve read this.  now go away while i hatch more pearly pearls of wily wisdom.

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8 comments on “triple distilled

  1. Here is my two cents on why there is no money in pool.

    1. Disorganization in the industry / association.
    Take for example golf, they have the PGA Tour, it is a well run organization or association, and viewers know where it is, upcoming schedule, who’s playing etc. The WPBA is almost there, but on the men’s side (I might to wrong) there are too many tours etc. that no one knows WTF is going on.

    2. Greedy.
    How can tour organizer’s charge an entrance fee ($25.00) to watch a pool tournament when the audience is so small? It does not entice a new or existing player to watch the tournaments live.

    3. Sponsors.
    It’s always the same sponsor’s over and over again. I agree with you that manufacturers of pool products do get rich, because of their exposure over T.V., internet or just the brand name. People looking for sponsors need to reach out beyond just manufacturers or pool products, how about reaching out to a information technology company, a financial company, a multi-national company?

    Q&B

    • thanks for your comment, Q+B.

      1. Disorganization in the industry / association.
      Take for example golf, they have the PGA Tour, it is a well run organization or association, and viewers know where it is, upcoming schedule, who’s playing etc. The WPBA is almost there, but on the men’s side (I might to wrong) there are too many tours etc. that no one knows WTF is going on.

      i tend to agree, and i think the reason is the lack of sacrifice for the men’s tour. no one wants to give up anything when they join a tour. pro player mark wilson made this remark about pool players in 2005: “A band of renegades . . . The only way you can get two of them to go in the same direction is if they agree to cut the third one’s throat. Otherwise it’s every man for himself.” i think a good number of people in the industry have myopia, and they tend to see profit first. they can’t seem to see, or agree, on any long-term goal. i would say the WPBA is there, and the only issue is pool’s popularity as a whole. if pool becomes more popular then WPBA will get even more tv time.

      2. Greedy.
      How can tour organizer’s charge an entrance fee ($25.00) to watch a pool tournament when the audience is so small? It does not entice a new or existing player to watch the tournaments live.

      i think again it’s myopia, with the desire for profit placed on top. personally i would grab people off the streets to fill the stands, and give heavily-discounted rate just to gain viewership. but not many people are willing to give up short-term profits for long-term gain.

      3. Sponsors.
      It’s always the same sponsor’s over and over again. I agree with you that manufacturers of pool products do get rich, because of their exposure over T.V., internet or just the brand name. People looking for sponsors need to reach out beyond just manufacturers or pool products, how about reaching out to a information technology company, a financial company, a multi-national company?

      i think larger billiard companies are profitable because they run their businesses on a profit-first model, meaning pool itself has to take a back seat. again, i believe this is a form of myopia b/c no one wants to really promote the game. as far as attracting sponsors, it goes back to greed that you talked about. if you remember a while back, Camel sponsored a men’s tour. this is tobacco money! r.j. reynolds easily makes 1 billion USD/year in profits. well, let’s just say the players weren’t exactly grateful, and Camel decided to pull out. i don’t think the problem is attracting sponsors. it’s more about keeping them around that’s been a problem. the men’s tour has gained disrepute and i believe companies don’t call b/c they’re afraid to get shafted.

      you’re right on all 3 points of course. we can probably sum it up as a lack of sacrifice for the greater good of the game. people weren’t willing to give then, and they’re not willing now. this won’t change anytime soon. the WPBA seems to do well on this front, and the players are able to come together as a single unity. as a result, WPBA is the first organizing body you think of when you talk about pro women’s pool.

  2. ha, i will try out spam, your post get me some good spam ideas, it’s really awesome, thanks.

    – norman

    • ha norman, u should try out spam, the spam is really tasty & good for you, it’s really awesome, thanks for contributing to spamatopoeia.

      – p00lriah

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