Saturday, July 09, 2005

Another Kind of Hell

We went up north to Jersey for the 4th of July. I got to play a little pool but before I get into that let me tell you about the trip which was highlighted by the flight from hell. Granted, those who were aboard the ill-fated flights of 9-11 were truly on flights from hell. Mine was a different kind of hell.

A little advice – there’s an outfit that bills themselves as Delta Song. Avoid them like a poolroom full of drunken cheats. Not only were we a couple hours late going and coming, but no one could tell us why. While waiting for our return flight, flight 1991, to leave JFK they changed gates 3 times and had us running around the terminal like headless poultry. In the end, they switched back to the original gate. With the flight due into Tampa after midnight, I had hoped to take a little nap during the flight. The two screaming infants in the seat in front of me made that impossible. Finally, an off-duty flight attendant volunteered to sit with the mother of the two brats and tried to quiet her brood. No luck. Me? Unable to sleep, I decided to play trivia on the screen that was mounted on the back of the seat in front of me. Then the off-duty flight attendant had the attendant on duty instruct me to stop hitting the screen so hard because it was disturbing her. “Are you kidding me?!?,” I responded as the attendant showed me her ass. “Tell her to shut up those frigging babies!” She had no answer for that, just a “screw-you” shrug. Headline: Delta Song Hits A Sour Note.

Anyway, while up north my friend Lee Bender introduced me to his brother John, a fine pool player in his own right who is presently exploring the world of samsara. For some time, John has been gearing up to launch his own custom cue business. Good news for us. Not only has he inherited the woodworking gene from his father, he is also a good friend of Richard Black. I’ll let you know when he starts production.

I also got a chance to accompany my uncles, Bob and Nick Ricciotti, to the poolroom in Succasunna. We played for a couple hours and had a nice afternoon. One difference between here and there is that in NJ pool and golf cost almost the same to play. Here, you can take advantage of the afternoon special and play from opening till 7 o’clock for a flat $5 or at some places $2 an hour.

I returned Wednesday night, rested up Thursday, and last night decided to go down to the local bar tournament again despite the smoke. First game I broke and ran out but it was all down hill from there. I blamed it on jet lag.

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