just in case, and other random thoughts

i was going through the pool matches on my dvr.  (i have a small collection of it.  and i wish my dvr has a bigger hard drive.)  i had no idea i recorded the 2009 wpba pacific coast classic & never watched any of the matches; this was the tournament where they televised four quarterfinals, two semifinals, and the finals match for a whopping total of seven hours of pool.  that’s quite a coverage for a single tournament.

anyway, i began to go through the matches starting with the first quarterfinals match.  the third quarterfinals match had jennifer chen battling karen corr; rather, the match had karen corr unleashing total annihilation upon jennifer chen.  yeah, it’s that match—the one where corr obliterated chen 7-0.  i haven’t watched too many jennifer chen matches; if i did, it was a long time ago and i don’t remember them.  watching this match now though, the one thing that really struck me was the weirdness of chen’s form (at least in this match).  first off, she had this wavy, loopy warm-up stroke.  her wrist turned outward, but she didn’t really lock it.  there was a slight sidearm stroke going on.  she also incorporated a wrist snap, & she tried to punch her shots with the wrist snap . . . it looked like a mess.  there just seemed to be so many factors in chen’s form that could work against her.  i’m not saying that chen’s a bad player; she has the hardwares to quiet the doubters and critics.  but man, she has a weird form.

all this led me to think about fundamentals.  i think good fundamentals are there to get you through the bad times; a contingency plan for the times when you shoot like crap.  when you play well, it pretty much doesn’t matter what you do; you’ll run out and make great shots when you’re on.  but when you’re playing bad, the values of solid fundamentals really shine through.  i think of it as a back-up plan: when i play bad (and i will, because i’m human), i can go back to my fundamentals to get me out of that slump.  this is the paradoxical nature of pool though: us players are forever trying to get in the zone, where you’ll stop thinking about fundamentals and just shoot.  but you must have solid fundamentals to get to the zone.  weird, huh?

anyway, i was glad to see chen on tv; she went through a really rough spot, but now she’s competing again, and i believe she either opened up a new pool hall in china or trying to open one.  hope she does well.

i found lil’ al romero’s number in case you want to order a cue.  (562)867-3580.  get a sneaky or a break & jump sneaky; they play solid.

btw, this whole cycak business just further reinforced my beliefs about forums.  if you read the omg vs. cycak thread on azb forum, it went from straight discussions about the match to forum members hurling insults at each other in practically no time at all.  i’m just glad i’m not part of any of that.  also, ms. cycak went on a posting rampage & wrote of bunch of stuff about people making fun of her hair, her attire, or the way she supposedly treated the workers at the pool hall.  unfortunately ms. cycak completely missed the bus.  people didn’t become outraged at the way she looked or how she treated others; it was about what she did, which was welshing a bet.  after practically hundreds of comments and several blog posts, she is still not getting that.  f~*ing amazing.

oh, i practiced with weasel again.  during our practice session, i noticed that he would try to subtly shark me, which led me to think about the way we approach the game.  when a person sharks, the person’s attention is on the opponent, not on his/her own game.  instead of being able to learn from the practice or the match, that person is wasting valuable energy on the other guy.  i think that in pool, worry about your own s~* first and concentrate on improving your game.  when you pay too much attention on how to shark your opponent, you’re losing the chance to improve yourself.

hey, i learned something.  cool.

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10 comments on “just in case, and other random thoughts

  1. Some of my random thoughts:
    1. Fundamentals – Since I don’t have much time to play right now I must be very picky with the little time I do have; therefore, when I practice I’m only shooting one drill: object ball one diamond down from the side pocket and one diamond to the middle of the table…cue ball one diamond out and one diamond down from the opposite corner pocket. Basically I’m shooting across the diagonal of the table, from one corner pocket to the other. I’ll shoot this shot 30 times in a row, really intensely focusing on each shot; demanding perfection in stance, stroke, mechanics. Although I’m now only practicing 1/20 as much as I used to, my game has improved over the last 2 months. My accuracy on all shots has improved due to my focus on my fundamentals with just this one shot. A little bit of correct practice is better than hours and hours of half ass practice.
    2. Video matches – I have quite a few. I never watch them. Bad me. I need to watch more matches and learn vicariously through them.
    3. The whole Cycak business – I enjoyed reading both your coverage and OMGWTF’s acccounts. Entertaining, maybe in a sick sort of way. I’m still astounded by the fact that people like that really exist. How can anyone be that oblivious?
    4. Sharking – You can only be sharked if you allow yourself to be sharked. Get inside your own head before your opponent does.

    That’s all I got to say about that.

    • i’m not sure about the sharking thing michael. i’ll have to think about your comment a bit.

      as far as people like ms. cycak go, i can only guess it’s some sort of personality disorder or some pretty serious trauma in the past. she probably needs help, but i don’t believe she realizes that.

  2. I liked was how the thread ended up being a great way for other members to engage each other in their own little squabbles! THAT’S entertainment!

    • that’s the part that depresses me. the pool forums i’ve seen can’t seem to carry a civil dialogue. the topics of discussion are forgotten in a matter of hours, and the rest of the comments become a free-for-all. maybe that’s why i’m out of the loop most of the time–i rarely read forum postings.

  3. That is a very interesting perspective on sharking that I hadn’t thought of. I always like your take on things! Makes me think of things differently, which I appreciate.

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