View Full Version : "Bitch Stick"

01-14-2006, 11:28 AM
That's what many of the young male (twenty-something) players I've met call the bridge. The bridge seems to have gotten stigmatized somewhere along the way so that it's now viewed by some younger players as a crutch that only weak players use.

I've been using it since I first learned how to play the game and consider it to be a useful and sometimes indispensible tool. In fact, when I practice, I practice using the bridge along with all my normal routines. Knowing how to use that tool properly can make the difference between making a key shot and losing a turn.

I'm wondering if others have seen this same thing? Has the bridge become stigmatized to the younger set of players or is this something that's limited to a few of the more insecure masculine types who play the game?

01-14-2006, 11:56 AM
I could care less what other people think. In front of these people, I would practice using the mechanical bridge and would ignore their comments.

Use this to your advantage. The more things you can do, which your opponent can't do, the larger advantage you have over your opponent.

And that is all this game is in a tournament. Individual shots. There are always a few shots in a game which some people can't shoot, but others can. So if you have two players who are the same skill basically, but one player knows a few shots the other does not, then that might be just enough to win. (Or the opposite.)

I don't know how many times I have won because someone needed to use a mechanical bridge (crutch) and did not know how to use it because they never practiced using it. They get up to the table and say "I hate using this thing". Then I smile to myself and chalk up my cue. I know I will have the next shot...

Fran Crimi
01-14-2006, 03:17 PM
Remember that Nike commercial with Anika Sorenstam wacking a ball off the tee, then turning to the camera and saying, "I swing like a girl."

These guys you're describing really need to get over it.



01-14-2006, 05:02 PM
Bitch Stick - just something that they have not Mastered. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Send them off to play Snooker on a 12 foot table until they have made her their friend.

01-14-2006, 06:01 PM
At 5 foot nuttin I'll use that bitch stick anytime I have to!!! If anyone says something about it - I'll give 'em a brand new reason to call it a "Bytch Stick"... /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

9 Ball Girl
01-14-2006, 07:04 PM
I played some random dude in the PH once and I had to use the bridge:

Him: So you're going to use the bytch stick?
Me: Yup and because I am, you're going to be the bytch racking the next game.

That was the end of that.

01-14-2006, 07:26 PM
I've heard a lot of the same thing. I never really cared because the people that were usually saying it weren't the best players. And whenever it was someone who was a decent player and they kept on saying it, I ditched the bitch stick shot left handed and still beat him.

But overall it's just a sign of immaturity. Like it was said earlier, it's just something that players who haven't yet mastered it are going to say.

01-14-2006, 08:31 PM
Speaking of Bitch Sticks.....

01-15-2006, 05:05 AM
a little sexist, but too late to delete above....

01-15-2006, 08:33 AM
In the article on billiards at Wikipedia.org (the free encyclopedia) there's a section on "the mechanical bridge" which states:

"The mechanical bridge, sometimes called a "rake" and known as a "rest" in the UK, is used to extend a player's reach on a shot where the cueball is too far away for normal hand bridging. It consists of a stick with a grooved metal or plastic head which the cue slides on. Many amateurs refuse to use the mechanical bridge based on an inexplicable perception that to do so is unmanly. However, aficionados and professionals employ the bridge whenever the intended shot so requires." (emphasis mine).

If an encyclopedia contains this information it must be pretty universal.

Scott Lee
01-15-2006, 12:02 PM
SnakebyteXXX...Where ya been? Haven't seen you posting in a while (although I guess you're over on the N/P side pretty often!). It's not a phenomena limited to young players. As I travel all over the country, I see this attitude among players of all ages...but mostly of the same ignorance of the game. Bitch stick, ladie's aid, crutch...it's all the same ridiculous suggestion. They just don't know what they don't know! LOL Part of my lessons always include proper use and practice with the bridge!

Scott Lee

01-15-2006, 01:26 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Alaskan_Pool:</font><hr> "Many amateurs refuse to use the mechanical bridge based on an inexplicable perception that to do so is unmanly"

If an encyclopedia contains this information it must be pretty universal. <hr /></blockquote>

A couple of other signs of masculine insecurity/immaturity in the game (seen most often in bars):

1. Shooting almost every shot (other than the break) as if they were firing the cue ball out of a cannon. This can verge on an apparent effort to shatter the object ball on contact while concurrently making the loudest noise possible from the resulting collision.

2. A belief that anyone shooting safeties is playing 'chickenshit' pool and that any such attempt is underhanded and constitutes a form of unmanly cheating.

01-15-2006, 01:48 PM
Well, then I think you owe me a lesson on the bridge. Checked the tape and no information on using it. I usually shoot one-handed instead of using the bridge, but don't hesitate when the situation calls for it (as Scott can attest if he remembers the shot on the snooker table). Not using it due to what someone else might say or think is just foolish in my opinion. It is as essential a tool as chalk or even the cue stick. My wife is 5'2" with ample cleavage and has to use the bridge for almost a third of her shots either because she can't reach or her accoutrements get in the way.

01-15-2006, 03:25 PM
Never Heard It called A Bitch Stick. That is honestly just stupid.

Scott Lee
01-15-2006, 06:22 PM
Bill...To be fair, I did ask if you knew how to use a bridge, and you said 'yes'...and pointed it out when we played snooker! LOL If someone doesn't know how, I'm happy to show them!/ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif


01-15-2006, 08:44 PM
Oops! My bad... I was just givin' ya a ration. The "lol" was in my head when I was writing it but when I reread it, I saw it didn't make it into the post. To be fair, you did ask me.

01-16-2006, 06:10 AM
Forget about what they call it. learning how to use it is an important part of the game. The more you know how to properly use it, the higher your percentage of making the shot with it. I was taught, lock the Bridge down to the table with your bridge hand, then keep your stroking hand elbow out to the side and level with your shoulder.This will prevent a mis-cue from the cue bobbing up &amp; down. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

01-16-2006, 05:53 PM
A friend of mine from Russia says they call it "The Mother-In-Law" because the best result you can hope for is that it won't make things worse.

Seriously though, being a former Snooker player I have no hesitation in reaching for the rest when required BUT it important to recognize you cannot reliably shoot the same range of shots with the rest as with a normal bridge, even with practice. Therefore you have to be consciously aware of the "bridge zones" on the table when you plan your run and be careful not to play position for a rest shot that requires a difficult position play.

01-17-2006, 06:54 AM
I go as far as keeping one of those black "Batman" bridge heads in all 3 of my rig's so i can put it on my break cue
if i need a bridge and there is not one available. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

01-17-2006, 09:12 AM
I had open heart surgery back in 2001 and I've got some nerve damage to my left arm. Every once in awhile I get these tremors that are uncontrolable and it makes it very difficult to play. So, I carry a bridge head with me as well. However, I don't always put it on my break cue I just use it in my left hand and it stops the tremors. I don't really care what anyone says about it. I just kick their ass and take all of their money.