It so hard to find time to write these days. So, just a quick update to my post in February ("No pain no gain", and "No pain no gain, revisited.")
At the last minute I was able to get on a second team that could play me, even if I was over-rated. The league operator agreed to lower my skill level after a few weeks if it didn't work out. After a few losses, he kept his word, and dropped me down again. Of course, this falls under the "be-careful-what-you-wish-for" category. Now that I'm properly rated, both teams want to play me almost every week. On my original team we had another team member go up, so I'm in the opposite situation, if I don't play, we have to forfeit. Actually, my back-up team has had 3 other players raised (one of them twice), so its a similar situation there, too. After being worried that I wouldn't get to play enough, I'm playing too much.
Its been a struggle. But I have only two more weeks, and then I'll be free. I still enjoy the nights socially, but I find that I don't really look forward to the pool that much. Even if I play an interesting opponent. Even if I play well. It doesn't really matter. I used to keep a log of all my matches. With league matches, I don't even bother logging them anymore. I've really been working to maintain an attitude that in some small way EVERY match I play makes a difference, even if its not noticeable. But, on league nights I have to take it on faith.
The hassle of worrying about the APA handicapping has many of the other players looking at the BCA. My original team is having a serious conversation about taking a break from pool altogether and starting a bowling team, and then playing weekly pool tournaments together from time to time, instead of a formal team. Its a more expensive option, but you get to play a lot more pool in any one night.
My shoulder has improved immensely, after a week of rest and icing 3 times a day. Too much time on the computer can cause a flair up. I've also noticed I can get a dull ache that's distracting during tournament matches. Not sure if its from actually stroking or if its just muscle tension. The pain tends to be worse during matches where I'm not shooting as much ;-)