Back in 1971 I was a pretty sharp shooting, quick moving, ball sinking, pool shark. I even won a big tournament in South Yonkers and was presented with a cue stick, for coming in first, by the great Willie Mosconi. What an honor that was for me, to meet one of the all time greats at the game and to shake his hand, while being presented an awesome cue stick for first place, at the tournament he had sponsored.
The town of Brewster had a great pool hall that I often played at. It was owned and handled, by a character named Turk. Turk was a small framed man with large underground connections. A kind of shady character, that ran a great business for all of us kids to patronize and hang out. There was lots of action on the betting front and this made for a very lucrative source of income, for someone like myself. On many nights I'd be involved in hustling pool and making some scratch just to satisfy my financial and egotistical nature, but when the place closed, I'd be outside wondering where the party was. At my young age, not knowing where the party was, was killing my social life and this was not a good thing for me.
On one night, which I remember very well, I had made about $45 dollars and the pool hall was closing at midnight, as it always had. I stood alone outside on a beautiful summer night. The town was dead. Everybody was at some giant party that I didn't know the location of, when I came to the realization, that my social life was being stolen by my love of competition and making money. My skills were sharp but my life was dull. Was it worth it? " Hell no!" was my answer to myself. It all became clear to me, on that night, at that moment. I hung up my cue stick and didn't play the game at all, for at least 7 years. I found much better things to do, like playing guitar and just plain seeking out adventurers with my friends. This turn would tantalize and satisfy my active and youthful social life. I would leave the east coast to follow my destiny out west, only a few years later.
Over the years, I have played pool only when I ran across someone that just needed to get beat for their own good, or maybe for the good of others. Distribution for humanities sake. me being the executioner. Shatter a few egos, was my only concern in pursuing the game. A turning point in life was achieved on that night, at that moment, a realization of major proportion would propel me forward, to bring me here to you, on this night, so as to entertain you, with another profound moment in my life. I hope you were entertained.
Stay thirsty my friends Wizzzmo