Between the ages of 18 and 22 if you needed to find me in the evening, you needed to look no further than Cushions Billiards. Nestled in a shopping center in Westerville, Brad and I used to close that place every night. Through the years it has been the sight of many notable moments in my life. My 21st birthday. Shooting with Brad and another old friend a few years ago. Being there with Bethany and Angel on a turning point night in our marriage, a sure step on the path towards out divorce. But I hadn't been there since December of last year when, after a long, grueling day of travel, I was rewarded with a beer and great company at the bar. So last night when I decided I wanted to shoot pool, I asked Josh to go the my favorite place to play.

The place has changed. More coin tables have replaced hourly tables. The bar is bigger, and the customer service has gone downhill. To top it off, I cannot remember ever shooting so poorly in my life. I could not hit water if I had fallen out of a boat. My mind was clearly elsewhere.

While I had a good time with my brother (I cannot believe I had ever shot pool with Josh at Cushions before), I decided that last night will be my last night at my long time getaway place. The reasons run deeper that the people behind the counter, the music on the jukebox (though Tom Sawyer still played once, a cog in the environment there) or even the coin tables that are clearly the new thing there. I think it is best to leave the past there, and as long as I never open that door again, I don't have to think about it.

The moral? I am looking for a new pool hall. Any suggestions?


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