Pool League Is Done!
... at least for this year. Next session I'm only playing Wednesday night. It's a NY's Resolution. RT's is still a dive, despite all the hopes I had for it when we started there so many months ago. The food, when they have it, is terrible. The tables are is terrible shape, and they've decided that they're not going to recover them like they said they would after Homecoming. The balls aren't even all the same size, which can make a huge difference. One night we went in, and there weren't enough solids to make a complete set on all five tables, so we asked if they had any extras and they gave us three stripes and a Sharpie. It's ridiculous. In addition, there are enormous gaps at the windows, so sitting around the edge of the pool room is almost like being outside.
On a historical note, we were playing the final matches for the playoffs this week. These were races to 9.
My team with Patti and Bruce won our first round 9-6 (I think). Our final match against Stump Jumpers went to an 8-8 tie which led to a best-2-out-of-3 showdown. Bruce played and won 2-0, garnering us 5th place overall. (This was a bottom bracket for 4th - 10th places minus the wild card to the top bracket).
Tuesday, my team won our first match 9-7. The second match we went up against another incarnation of Stump Jumpers. I got to play against Graeme (whom I'd been cheated out of playing on Monday due to player substitutions). He left me an open shot at my last stripe, since the 8-ball was locked up an dhe didn't see any way for me to break it out and have a shot at it. I made the 15, and came to near-perfect position for a bank-shot on the 8. I went about two inches too far, which is still great considering the cue ball went about 12 feet. I had to slam it to close the angle on the bank, and it went in dead center. It's always nice to finish with a dramatic flourish. We were holding our own until the 4th round. I had no chance against Neil. I broke the rack wide open. Either set was runable. Unfortunately for me, I didn't make a ball on the break, so he did run the table. We lost 6-9.
Tonight, I couldn't shoot for shit in warm-up. We get to the match, and I'm doing great. I win my first two racks neatly. I played my 3rd rack againt Jamake, one of the best players in the league. He shot down to the 8 and joggled it in the corner. I ran all my set save two balls that were tied up together. I tried to play a safety behind them (so he couldn't see the 8), and hit it just the slightest bit too hard, leaving him an open shot. I won the 4th, and we ended up with another 8-8 tie. Patti thought I was on my game enough to play the showdown. I won the 1st game, and lost the 2nd, again due to a safety poorly played. The 3rd was a heartbreaker. I had a straight in shot into the corner, and needed to get around for my 12 on the opposite long rail. I couldn't draw it back to get the position. I tried to play the 11 into another part of the pocket and follow around, but scratched. Jamake played out the last two balls, winning the match for them. I tried the shot a couple more times for future reference, and found my error. After about another 10 minutes, I realized how fried I must be by this time of the week. I should have played a simple short-rail kick and won. But then, I wouldn't be here typing now if I had. It was really a thrill to be picked as our premier player for the clutch.
Earthshine and Shooting Stars
On Monday, the Geminids (I think) were supposed to be really a good early evening meteor shower. On the way home, I did see one. I couldn't have missed it, a beautiful, bright, graceful arc from zenith to nearly the horizon. I wish I hadn't been so tired and the weather hadn't been so cold, or I'd have gone out to see some more.
On Tuesday, the new moon being only two or three nights old, was a sharp crescent. It was still well above the horizon after full dark, as I drove home, I caught glimpses of it and the dimmer earthshine on the gibbous dark side. It was like Hecate herself was showing off her French manicure on one nail against black velvet covered in tiny diamonds.
I hope that someone else was seeing the same things. They were far too wonderous to be mine alone.
On the way home tonight, Patti mentioned a box full of film negatives and slides that she has under her bed. She wants to put them in another place so that Butch and the kittens don't get into it. She has about 40,000 negatives, and they're not organized at all. So it struck me. A perfect gift for her would be a flatbed scanner with slide/negative capability. That way she could scan them in, reverse the color, and have digital positives that she could print out, email, or take to the Kodak kiosk and have prints made. It's something she'd never get for herself, but something I know she'd be thrilled with and use all the time. Plus, she could use the scanner for traditional scanning of regular photo prints. It'll probably cost a bit, in the $100-200 range, but I figure that since she has sheltered me, fed me, been a great friend and mother to me, it's not an object.
There are a lot of people out there for whom I have no real ideas. I'm making some things for general giving if I can't come up with anything else. I'm not telling here, since you might be one of those people.
Not really too much to report here. Butch and Ziggy and the yet-unnamed fela are doing wonderfully. Butch keeps moving them, which is normal. In the wild, cats move their kittens periodically to keep from building up a scent that predators can home in on. The thing is, last night, Patti woke up to purring in stereo. Butch had moved the kittens up onto the bed (a height of about three feet) and tucked them in under Patti's pillow, then lept across her to sleep on the other side. Evidently, Patti's been imprinted on Butch as a mother, too. Patti sleeps like a rock, she says, so there shouldn't be any danger for the kittens, but she puts them back under the bed in the suitcase nest. She fully expects to wake up to them on the bed again.
Their eyes and ears aren't open yet. They should be soon. Tomorrow is their first week's birthday. Patti's keeping them shut in her room to safeguard them from the other cats. In the meantime, I get four cats sleeping in my bed every night! This is very comfy for me.
I just wanted to let everyone know that I will be getting around to editing the pix from flower76's Halloween party and posting them for everyone's amusement and enjoyment (don't they go hand in hand?) Hopefully, I can do this within the next week. As you can read, I've been kept very busy, but many of my evenings will be freed up. I get to sleep now! %^}