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Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

Jaden, my adorable* and talented co-star on the DITL‘s (3-minute video blogs) so many of you know and love, started his pool lessons yesterday.  And by “pool” I mean billiards.

Here’s a shot of him more than two years ago practicing in Grandma’s garage:

He was only four years old, yet he already knew to have his head down, get a bridge close to the ball, and make sure you look tan and muscled whenever someone takes an impromptu photo of you shooting pool.

There’s a fellow pool player we know named Gaines Jonakin who runs a kids instruction league.  Gaines is a Recognized BCA Instructor and a fabulous teacher.  My wife chauffered Jaden to his first “league week” and I’ll probably take him to future ones.  We plan on practicing tonight, in fact.

Jaden did great!  He listened when he needed to listened, and did what he was told.  He picked up some great tips, and was as excited as you can guess a 6yr old to be.  While he hasn’t mastered all the rules yet (for example, he’s still a little confused as to when he gets ball-in-hand), he’s doing mighty fine and most importantly, he’s having fun.

Tips he’s picking up:

  • Be nice to people when you beat them so bad they start crying.  Help them rake in the balls you sunk while they cowered in the corner in a whimpering fetal position.
  • Give people a full 30 minutes to pay up on their debts.  Don’t “enable” the weak to go too long without paying.  
  • Be willing to take a finger or a toe in lieu of large lump sum payments.
  • Always leave a sucker rent money.  
  • Don’t get caught slicking up the solids and chalking up the stripes.  It just ain’t worth it.

When we were pregnant w/Jaden, another pool friend of ours made a custom cue for him as a baby shower gift – one that comes apart in three pieces.  With the back piece off, the cue is just long enough for him at his height.  As he gets older, he can put the back piece back on.

I’m sure one of the future DITL’s will have some footage of Jaden wiping the table with his old man – he played his instructor in a 9-ball race and won! (Jaden was so pumped up! don’t tell him that it was a 4-90 race, where Jaden had to sink 4 balls and the instructor had to sink 90).

I think my proudest moment was when my wife got home and relayed the following: when Gaines was playing his “match” with Jaden, he performed a very solid shot on a ball that was all the way on the other side of the table.  When Gaines made the shot, Jaden gasped.  My wife asked “What?” and Jaden whispered “He’s as good as daddy!

Content sigh.

What tips would you give Jaden?

* it’s ok to call him adorable because he’s currently 6 years old.  About the time he gets to be 8 or 9, I’ll call him “strapping” or “strong young man” or even “handsome”.

And lo, the people did comment thus:


  1. Amber says:

    Like father, like son! Apparently in more ways than one. He’s good at pool, you’re good at pool. He’s adorable, you’re adorable… err… I mean, “handsome.” He’s got a sense of humor (being nice when you make them cry? LoL), you’ve got a sense of humor. Yep! Looks like you and your wife are doing a fantastic job and you have every reason to be the proud papa that you are :). But then, you already knew that didn’t you? I absolutely love happy, warm-feeling-inducing, posts like these! Thank you for sharing!

    Amber´s last blog post..Annnd…? What’s Your Point?

  2. Tug says:

    My tip? Always tip the cocktail waitress, she’ll take good care of him. (Hey, you mentioned fingers & toes)

    Tug´s last blog post..Scenery

  3. Sandi says:

    That’s really cool! And I have to say this is the very first incidence in my personal reading where so young a child was given pool lessons.

    I just hope you’re not calling him Fats Jaden. Or Cool Hand J. 😉

    Sandi´s last blog post..Will it increase productivity?

  4. Raganator says:

    Gaines is a great teacher and if he shows this much interest now he’ll be Top Gun for sure!

  5. marilyn says:

    Early career training is good. Also, I think it was nice of you to share the responsibility of being pregnant.

    marilyn´s last blog post..Manic Monday: Bite

  6. You have *The Color of Money* playing out on your own home…

    Princess Extraordinaire´s last blog post..Missing a Friend……

  7. Sybil Law says:

    Let him grow his hair out, mullet style!
    No. Don’t.
    I am terrible at pool. Once, very drunk, at a party, I actually played really well, and even did that hand behind the back shot thing, just TRYING, and made it. The guys we were playing thought we were HUSTLING them! It was a drunken fluke!
    So beyond that male story, I have no pool advice.
    Now foosball, I could teach him.

    Sybil Law´s last blog post..A Post!

  8. Sybil Law says:

    Um, I didn’t mean MALE story, I meant LAME story.
    Freudian?! No idea…. 🙂

    Sybil Law´s last blog post..A Post!

  9. metalmom says:

    Pool lessons are cool.

    You’re never too young for a little ‘pocket ball’

    metalmom´s last blog post..Birthday Girl

  10. Evil Genius says:

    Wow! I bet Jaden could already wipe up the table with me. Hey, once he’s good enough you and the wife can retire and let him take care of you in your Golden Years! Ha!

    Go Jaden!

    Evil Genius´s last blog post..A Little Mouse Humor

  11. kapgar says:

    I suck at pool so I have no useful tips. However, maybe you should create instructional videos for billiards featuring Jaden and make people pay for subscriptions. I could use the help.

    kapgar´s last blog post..Jump in…

  12. sourpuss says:

    My tip for Jaden is for when he’s grown up: Never use the phrase “when we were pregnant” … because the man is NEVER pregnant.

    sourpuss´s last blog post..Question

  13. Faiqa says:

    Pool is God’s way of striking balance in the universe for giving me an incredibly gifted mind. I’m really, really bad at it. I think that’s because I focus too much on calculating the trajectories of the balls. Heh, I wrote “balls.”

    Faiqa´s last blog post..Nope, I don’t know when the next terrorist hit is going down.

  14. martymankins says:

    My biggest tip to Jaden is to follow his dad’s lead as an up and coming pool shark.

    martymankins´s last blog post..Scooter Sunday #27

  15. Janna says:

    If I ever have to go into the Witness Protection Program, I want my new name to be Gaines Jonakin.
    Of course, then I’ll have to come back here and delete my comment so no one will know.

    Janna´s last blog post..Wordless Wednesday

  16. Janna says:

    …. or maybe I could be Gaines “Janna”kin.

  17. whall says:

    Amber, I used to have a sense of humor, but I lost it in a bad beat playing poker in Vegas at the Class Clown Convention.

    Tug, You know, that’s an excellent tip.

    Sandi, So far, he’s garnered no nickname other than “Sir”.

    Raganator, he’s very easy going and Jaden really liked his lesson.

    marilyn, Responsibility? yes. Cravings and nausea? no thanx.

    Princess Extraordinaire, I hope Jaden learns the ability to “flake on and off” at will.

    Cybil Law, I pity the foos who went up against you.

    Robin, sure! but like Rockford, I charge by the day, plus expenses. Oh, and it has to be on location in Ireland.

    metalmom, the lessons are cool, and the teacher is patient. What more could you ask for?

    Evil Genius, Here’s to hoping the golden years are far away and the golden oreos are close at hand.

    kapgar, that’s a really good idea. He’s taken a liking to the camera so far…

    sourpuss, evidently you haven’t seen Twins.

    Faiqa, I saw Spaceballs more than once. I’m just sayin’.

    martymankins, maybe we can do a father-n-son hustle…. give the boy a proper education. Or he can follow Rod Stewart’s advice and steal his daddy’s cue and make a living out of playin’ pool.

    Janna, At the very least, it’s the best Jedi name I’ve ever heard.

  18. I haven’t seen DITL, but that is a cool picture of Jaden on the Fisher-Price table.

    He may be interested in reading about kids of a similar age to him, such as Landon Shuffett and Stephen “Little Sharky” LeClair. Another phenom out there is Austin Murphy. Now, most of these kids are now in their young-teens (Stephen LeClair is still quite a bit younger), but they have been running racks and doing expositions for MANY years of their young lives!

    It is truly amazing what children can do at a pool table, given a little guidance and a lot of free time to learn how the balls roll. If Jaden is ever looking for some billiards supplies, such as training aids or a cue, drop me a line, as we’d be glad to “hook him up” with some goodies in exchange for some good plugs! =)

    May the rolls be with you,


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