Looking down the cue, it’s a straight enough deal. Red ball eight inches from centre pocket, cue ball about two feet away. Clear shot, no obstacles. There’s the satisfying sound of thwack, click, thump – but I was hoping for a plonk. I can’t seem to peg what it is, but I just haven’t been able to make a shot on this table. The last one had a roll to the far right pocket and the lights had shorted out, but at least I knew what was going on. Now I’m clueless and about three balls away from a pants-ing.
I go for another swig of my drink and scout my eyes across the dance floor where a couple of dozen ladies from various decades past flash about in a haze and a blur. A girl eyes back at me and lends me a sultry smile. I flash a grin in kind, but I’ve got other things on my mind, most prominently trying to forget as much of Spiderman 3 as I can before it starts to decay in my mind.
Giving up on skill, I resort to the hard-as-you-can school of pool shots. Balls scatter everywhere, one bouncing gently into a pocket next to my leg. Hallelujah. Tom gives me a series of hand signals to suggest that particular shot may not have been my intention, as is our only method of communication when affronted by the thousand decibel butchering of Summer of ’69 coming from the stage nearby. A game or two later and we take our leave of the place, taking in a brief tour of the street circus of Saturday night.
There are still things on my mind that I’d rather weren’t, but sometimes you don’t get as much say in the matter as you’d like. I shut off the car in the driveway, emotions undercover still jumping between bitterness, anger, frustration, defeat and anything between. It’s been days now and I tire of the way that it clings to my mind like it was the roof of my mouth.
Such sticky matters are always the same, you can never scratch them out as they stand. You need another lump of stick for it to grab to, then you can throw the whole thing out. Of course there’s no guarantees with such sticking things, but sometimes you’ve little other choice.
this is what you want
this is what you get