: Jennifer Barretta
In recent years a slew of new chalks have hit the pool market giving the the old standby, Master chalk, a run for the money. I've had the opportunity to try most brands, and while I used to chase the cube of Master around the rails with 99% of the pool population, I am now an official pool dork, and I proudly carry my own cube.
How did this happen to such an American pool purist? It was because of a gift that all the players in the 2011 Women's World 10 Ball received. One perfect little cube of Kamui chalk in a shiny foil package.
Initially, I was skeptical and stuffed it into my case, where I figured I would either end up giving it away, or losing it in my black hole of assorted pool products, but then after miscuing for the gazillionth time, I decided to give it a try.
The first time you chalk with Kamui, you can feel the difference. It's more like a putty, much more moist than the average chalk. It coats the tip thoroughly, and you can pretty much get through an entire game without ever having to chalk again. It's putty like texture requires it to be kept in its little space age pouch between pool sessions, but this is a small price to pay for a chalk that doesn't allow miscues.
Now that I'm a chalk-carrying pool dork, I had to devise a way to keep my cube always by my side. There are a few options that I looked into. One is the snooker pouch, a discreet little leather pouch that you wear on your waist and stuff your cube into between shots, another is the stick that allows your cube to dangle out of an available pocket, and the last is a magnetic chalk holder that clicks (annoyingly) on and off a base that is worn on your waist.
The purist in me is really screaming now. The leather pouch is just so...uptight. The stick is...amateurish, even though someone gave me a badass one that is made out of stingray leather. And the magnet? The magnet is just so utterly annoying. Click click. Clickity click click. Click. I mean really, really annoying. So what did I decide on? After playing in Asia so many times, I decided to do it their way. Take it with me everywhere I go. Ready to shoot? Place it on the rail. Back to the chair? Snatch it up like a selfish little brat. MY chalk.
Chalk and chalkers are very personal decisions, and everyone has a combination that works for them. Some people like having a mental break to chase their Master around the table. Some like to proudly dangle their Blue Diamond from the back pocket of their Wranglers. Some like to stuff their Triangle into their stuffy little pouch. Some like to annoy the entire pool room with whatever they keep in their clickitly clackity magnet. I, personally, like to carry my Kamui everywhere I go, and no, at $30 a cube, I don't have a square to spare.