Thursday, May 29, 2008

On The Rail

Well I have decided to start doing the live streaming for whomever is in need of my services and trying to get sponsorship to do so.So far it looks like I do and I should know for certain within a week.I am really excited and want to improve the streams as I do more and more events.

I decided it was best to make a new name for my little venture and decided to call in On The Rail instead of using Eclipse Pool.The reason why I decided this is to have it be 100% my own because Eclipse Pool even though it was my doing it was called that because of Eclipse Media which is promoter Mark Cantrill.When I do Mark's events I will do it under the Eclipse Pool name I am thinking perhaps but Im not sure yet,would like to just go with On The Rail but we shall see when the next event happens.

So I have gotten started on the page and am waiting to put the sponsors names up along with pictures from Rixx Images,he sure takes some good action shots.I do believe this is going to be a good start for me doing this and getting it structured with sponsors.The sponsors are going to benefit along with the fans,the sponsors get cheap advertising,the room gets recognition along with whatever promoter or tour has put on the event,and most of all the fans who I am doing this for get free pool.

On The Rail has its first gig and it will be the Arizona Desert Classic Tour's 14.1 State Championship which I will be broadcasting on June 21 and 22.Here is the link ,I hope you stop by and check it out,it should be a great event with some awesome pool for you to see.

See ya,

Fast Lenny

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Blast from the Past: The Mercury Grill

Well I was thinking of something very small time that I missed from about a year and half ago.It was a bar touney I would go to at this roadhouse bar in Sullivan County NY which was named The Mercury Grill but the regulars just called it the Merc.In that area alot of bars are what they call roadhouses,they were once someones home and they turned the first floor into a bar.This place had 2 tables in it and was a decent place with some good locals who would hang out there and have some fun.

I must have played at this place in that tourney about 20 times and won it about 15 times,the other 5 times I would say were just where flukey stuff would happen like breaking a cluster and dropping the 8 ball.It was a tough tourney because the one table played bad and the other was ok but even though it was a double elimination it was a race to one with about 25 players.I had a few locals who thought I was a hustler,it wasnt that I was that good it was just that they were that bad really and the good ones were pretty much weekend warriors and bangers.I made friends with some of them and when I would win I would buy a few pitchers and drink with them.One thing I learned when on foreign territory is to make friends fast and with the right people,one of them was Brian,he was 6ft 3 and close to 300 pounds Im guessing and he loved pool.Brian was a young guy and a firefighter,I used to mess with him when we would play and tell him to be useful and go save a cat in a tree and he would get red.

I ended up meeting up with another fellow traveler who went in search of alittle action and an easy score at The Merc.He shot with a Robinson cue and it was the first time I saw one and it was the type of cue with the pin in the shaft,he told me he paid about $2000 for it and I was in disbelief never hearing of the guy but it was valued at that I later found out.The guy played well and I met him in the finals coming from the one loss side and I had to beat him twice.I won the first game after some safety play and both of us trying to outmove eachother on 2 of our balls that were tied up,trying to gain an advantage to setup a shot.The rules we were playing by werent BCA or APA,it was straight bar table rules with no ball in hand and you dont have to even hit your ball so its a strange game at times and laughable also.The whole bar is rooting for me to win even though every other week they are pulling against me as I am winning most times.The guy beat alot of people and they werent happy,2 guys were ready to beat him up,one of those deals where they feel they are getting hustled and the guy is just a good player not holding back speed so how can he be a hustler?,I never can understand that.I end up losing to the guy and he left without incident and never returned,cant remember his name as Im bad with them but I will never forget his face,thats just how I am.

The owner was a character and would make pizzas at the bar for the players alot of times so it was worth it to go there just for that.He liked to play in the tourney but alot of times he would get drunk and I mean drunk to where he would be sleeping on the bar,to me when your the owner its just bad business.After I went there for about 6 months the place ended up losing its liquor license due to serving minors.

I enjoyed beating a good local player who is an APA 7 whatever that means and his name was Rich Manny,I met him in the finals and had to beat him twice.Now he is a local bartable legend and alot of players in that area and the 3 surrounding counties know him as a bar table specialist.I knew when he was there he was trying to rob the tourney and why not,I counted on the money everytime I went too,it just seemed too easy.He is there with another player named Zook who owned a room in Middletown NY for a short time and now operates a room in Chester.So he is there with Zook who is pulling for him and his young pretty daughter who I had known for years and plays pretty sporty too,all his kids who I know play good as he taught them well.When I first got into the game I heard alot about Rich and really thought alot of his game,word of mouth can build legends alot of times.I beat him the first game pretty handidly but the second game took some maneuvering and he took a sell out shot after I played safe trying to thin cut a ball short rail to short rail.Zook was just shaking his head and asking Rich what was he thinking and that he shouldve respected my game and played safe.It felt good to beat Rich and validate that I could play and beat the best in my area on the bar table,sorry Rich no brew for you that night!

So I miss that place,it was one heck of alittle roadhouse,one of many I have been in and gambled at.The place is vacant when I drove past about a month or so ago on my trip to NY.I looked at the parking lot as I drove by where me and a dozen of my buddies faced off with another group of guys from another town who were starting trouble in a full out brawl which we won defending out turf so to speak.I thought of the wannabe drug dealers who would go in there on a Friday night from neighboring towns playing the big shot and taking $50 to $100 a game off of them and then getting that bad feeling because you know if you have a problem it wont be one on one.I had good times with a girl there who was a complete lunatic which alot of broads are who hang out in places like those and seemed to be that bar fly girl that you know at the local pub who is like a stray dog looking for some scraps or attention.She would just walk into the mens bathroom and slam me up against the wall and have her way with me,I wasnt complaining one bit,but it was not so good when she would take me by the hand and drag me into the girls bathroom,that will get you thrown out of a place!Just reflecting on the place and the people makes me miss it,some unique characters there of all walks of life but most were good people who loved to play pool.

Well this is my tribute to The Mercury Grill and the pool I played there,another place I scuffled around in and improved my game.I will have more stories of people and places,stay tuned.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

8 Ball Tourney

So I went out with my buddy Jay Burner tonight to play some pool at Alexanders but they werent having a tourney for some reason,funny how that happens,anyways we went to Metro up the street instead.They were having a bar box 8 ball tourney and it filled up quick with 32 players and what a grind.I won my first 2 matches and then lost my 3rd,won about 4 or so on the losers side and had the guy hill to donut,then we were hill-hill only to miss a cross corner bank on the 8 ball.I hit the banks I had all night too,it was the most important one and the only one I missed.

I was happy to beat one player who was a tall black guy and took the game real serious,I could tell me and him wouldnt mix.I played him and he wins the first game on me after a botched shot by me,he also tried to play safe and fouled by not getting a rail.I ask him if its ball in hand and he wont answer me and then says "You know the rules.",so I take ball in hand and he says that its gamesmanship and Im trying to get to him mentally since I asked that knowing the answer and the rules,the only thing I could think was what a jerk this guy is.I win the next one after he and I have a safety battle,the next rack I brake and run out beautifully and now he is shot.So on the last rack I run out on the guy again and I go to shake his hand and he wont even shake my hand,to me he deserved the drilling he got for being a jerk.

All in all I played pretty sporty and if I made that bank perhaps I could have taken the thing down,my buddy Jay thought for sure I was going to get there especially after playing as well as I did and all those damn matches I had to play.I so far in AZ since I moved here 9 months ago have about 7 cashes out the 14 tourneys I have entered so 50% to cash is pretty sporty.I plan on getting a table eventually,to be honest its the only way Im going to get to the next level with my game,playing once a week and going into tourneys stone cold just is not going to cut it and is doing more harm then good.

Well thanks for listening to my little vent on my night out and I guess it was better coming in 4th then going 2 and out.Take care and see you in the fast lane.

Fast Lenny

Friday, May 23, 2008

Live Stream of Eclipse Pool

Well i have been up and thinking about my plans for the future with the live streaming.The success of the Earl exhibition and the Reyes and Frost one pocket were really good,it wasnt an easy thing to do but it was certainly worthwhile not just for me but the fans and people involved.I wish I would have had the funding to do it better but I did quite well for the money I had to do it with.

I do believe that I will continue to do it,I already have another stream in the works and this time it will be the game of 14.1 that I will be bringing to the fans.I have been in contact with a few people about getting some sponsorship for the streams,it will be so helpful to get better stuff to work with and slowly improve the stream at each event I do.I havent sought out sponsorship,I have been hanging back and a few people have came forward and there have been some talks.I do believe people who want some cheap exposure of their products and business will get on board.I would like to do more streams from the state of Arizona as there are events and tournaments going on that are worthy about once a month or so.

Another avenue I was thinking of persuing with this is for room owners who have tourneys and want to have there own little page and a tourney live streamed from there a cheap way to get exposure and advertise.I believe I can help pool in my area on a small scale by doing this,its great for the fans too,as for the money,well there is no money in it!Most people who have any sense know there isnt much money in pool and for me thats not my motivation.I just want to get this going smoothly and have the equipment to do a good job,cover any expenses while I am doing it like gas,food,and whatever else so I dont have to go into my pocket to bring fans,promoters,room owners and whomever else something that is beneficial to them.I know that the best way to do this from my point of view is sponsorship,the sponsor gets very cheap advertising and exposure all over the place since the internet is worldwide and the fans get to see some pool,the room gets airtime and the players too!

I think this is the way of the future for pool,ESPN isnt doing anything so the IPT is doing there streaming with there money behind it and doing pretty nice stuff.The Action Report is awesome because its bringing fans straight up gambling with top players and you get to see the players gamble on all games.I do think they have a bright future and as sponsors realize the following is growing they will grow and grow and then be in the green and perhaps have something televised which would be cool.I wont ever be on the level of TAR and dont want to be honestly,its alot of work doing it and I am glad to just do it locally instead of driving all over the country and dealing with all the business stuff.

I just want to get a few sponsors and do stuff in my state, keep the stream nice,simple and smooth,maybe eventually have people commentate if they would like whom have knowledge.So I am waiting to hear back on one sponsor to see if he is going to come through,it might help both of us alot in what we are trying to do and it will be awesome to get a few things I need to improve the stream.I was so shocked to have 750 people watching and the stream go as well as it did with what I had to work with,the night before when I streamed Earl Strickland it went smoother and the quality was better,it was all about the internet connection and also lighting too.

Well enough rambling but I thought I would keep people informed on what I have been doing pool wise and will let you know whats coming down the pipe when its all definate.So take it easy and check out the link to the stream I was referring to that Im providing below,there are some videos on there too,enjoy.

Fast Lenny