Chapter 18. Counting Characters
In billiards, there are a few different ways to win a game. The most reliable way is to spend a whole lot of time perfecting your stroke, tweaking your stance, becoming a master strategist, and practicing the tough shots as diligently as the easy ones. This is what the pros do. They spend years running drills, playing against people better than they are, and pushing themselves to be great.
A less reliable but still effective way is to learn the basics of stroke, stance, and strategy, and become a decent player who can hold your own. No professional pool-playing aspirations here. Just a solid ability to beat most people who challenge you on a bar table.
The least reliable method is the one most people learn and subsequently ...