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  • T.J. Parker

    Since I'm laid up for a while, I'll write about working for T.J. Parker.

    I went to work at Parkers lounge / pool room in about 1963/64. The pool rooms were closing at midnight. The operators were trying to get the city to let them stay open. T.J. was very active in that. Enough Politics.

    I was trying to hustle pool so I thought this would be a good job.

    My 1st day on the job was rainy and dreary. 5 Latino laborers came in and started playing partner 8 ball, with one sitting out each game. T.J. explained how he wanted me to figure the time, and laid down in a big chair next to the register to have a nap, which he often did.

    These 5 guys were steady drinking Lone Star and playing 8 ball for about 3 or 4 hours, well I see one guy getting pretty drunk and arguing with the others, I see the others pointing at the door ,so I figured his pool time.

    He came walking up front, I told him you owe $2.80 or whatever it was.

    He said" I owe nussing, I no pay chit ." He kept walking, I had no idea what to do so I woke T.J. up, and said T.J. this guy won't pay.
    He hollered at the the guy loudly, Hey Bud c'mere and waved him back.
    He stood up and looked at the ticket and questioned if I had it right, I did.

    The guy walked to the counter and T.J. said Bud you owe $2.80. now go back there and get it from your amigos.

    The guy repeated himself " I owe nussing, I no pay chit"
    They keep a heavy tool on the counter to rough up tips, rasp on one side file on the other.
    T.J. picked it up and wound up and hit the guy across the temple and cheekbone.

    The guy dropped like a 100 lb. sack of whatever and was out cold.
    T.J. pointed at the amigos in the back and said "keep an eye on them" and left and went in the lounge side.

    I don't know how long he was gone, but it seemed a real long time.
    when he came back he had a pitcher of ice water and he started pouring it on this guy, he finally picked up the guy's shirt and poured on his stomach.
    The guy began to stir and T.J. just waited, he finally came to and T.J. brushed him off and said, you owe $2.80 go back there and get it from them and pay your time.

    I looked in the back and those guys looked like mice in the cage with a python, they were not moving a muscle, The guy went back there and they quickly got the cash together.

    When the guy came up to pay I saw he'd been lucky, all the marks on his temple and cheek were file marks, the rasp would've been rough.

    And that's the way it was my 1st day on the job.
    Last edited by androd; 04-22-2018, 01:44 PM.

    Rodney Stephens.
    (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working

  • #2
    The middle of the week

    A pool hustler came through, named Charlie Jones. I've known 2 more with the same name since.
    Charlie had a good looking young lady with him, he began to hustle the locals and win pretty good money, when that died down he began spotting the 8ball and won a little more. He then offered the 7ball, but no takers.

    after a while the biggest loser, also the best player, said give me the 7,.8 and 9balls and we'll play higher.
    Charlie said Oh no that's a huge spot, nobody can give that to anybody.
    Then he said, if you give me that spot, I'll shoot left handed.
    The loser said No way, Wade crane was just here and I've seen how well some people play other handed.

    Nothing happening, they both circled around for maybe 10 minutes, mumbling and growling.
    Finally Charlie says, ah man I know you're loser, we need to do something, what the hell, I'll stake the girl if you give her that game.

    it was the early 60's no one around here had ever seen a woman who could play pool, so the game was on. A few rail birds asked Charlie for a bet, he said no way, I'm just giving the man some action.

    They see sawed for about 15/20 minutes and the bet was raised again, the girl had missed a lot of balls but no money balls. I don't believe any of us knew she was stalling, but the game was getting heavier for the guy carrying the weight.

    One more bet raise and she cleaned his clock.
    The loser was grumbling and bitching about the game.
    Charlie told him " I told you nobody could give that to anybody"

    They were gone the next day.

    P.S I've got a good story about Charlie that Jersey Red told me.
    Last edited by androd; 12-19-2016, 12:08 PM.

    Rodney Stephens.
    (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


    • #3
      Charlie Jones

      I guess I'll wrap up the story Jersey Red told me about Charlie Jones.

      I asked Red if he knew Charlie ?
      he said I went into a bowling alley in atlanta about 11: pm and this guy was practicing 9ball, he asked if I would play, I agreed.
      He said bet twenty because the place closes at midnight, I agreed.

      We see sawed a few games and he was up one game when a left handed shot came up, he switched hands and finished his run out. He then broke the balls left handed and continued to shoot that way.

      It was like looking in a mirror, he looked exactly the same from either side.

      He continued lefty until a right handed shot came up, switched back and never missed a beat.
      Now the joints closing, I'm $100 loser and he asked if I wanted to play tomorrow ?

      I said OH YEAH, you bet I do, just one slight change.
      You've got to pick a PAW and stick with it, you've driven me completely crazy switching back and forth.

      Rodney Stephens.
      (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


      • #4
        For those who didn't know T.J. he was an out going, personable man.
        The downside was he didn't stand for any back talk, or misbehaving from anyone.
        I never saw him start trouble, but I've seen him finish a lot.
        He was a big man 6' 4'' 245/255 pounds. When younger he had 5 or 6 pro boxing matches, won them all and retired. He told me that he decided that wasn't what he wanted to do in life.
        More later !

        It was late friday afternoon, my 1st week, we were at the counter shooting the breeze and the girl tending bar in the lounge part, came out and said "T.J. there' a coustomer in the bar with blood all over his hands"

        T.J. went into the lounge and I started figuring someones time, I looked up and T.J. was walking a guy into the restroom.
        The next thing I hear is a loud BAM, BAM, BAM, BAM, BAM, BAM, about 10 or 15 of them, I ran to the restroom and looked in and T.J. was hammering the guys forehead into the towel machine.
        He looked up and told me to get a broom and dust pan, when I came back T.J. was cleaning him up. They guy had blood all over his face and T.J. was giving him a few swirlies, and looked like he was going to drown him.
        He handed the guy the broom and dust pan and told him"get all this glass cleaned up before you come out."

        After he cooled off, he said can you imagine that fool went in there and broke the mirror in the towel machine with his hands, then went back and ordered another beer, like I wouldn't know who did it.

        The last excitement my 1st week.

        P.S. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

        Rodney Stephens.
        (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


        • #5
          I said "more later on T.J."

          Most of the people that were around T.J. very much, agreed that he could of been heavy weight champ, if he'd followed his boxing career, although heavy weights were smaller in those years. As Jeff mentioned in one of the posts he took down, he had the largest hands I've ever seen, one of his was as big or almost as both of mine.

          If there was a house fly around him, one, two or maybe three swipes and he had it. I'm still amazed by that.

          It was said he won every dance contest that he entered, I have no idea but don't doubt it. He was very light on his feet for a big man.

          The downside with him was his temper, he went from zero to ten in a flash and if he could reach you, you were going to get hit. I saw him hit many guys with that left hook and they all went down. He followed that with a kick almost every time.

          More about the kicks and flashing hot later.
          Last edited by androd; 03-12-2017, 06:43 PM.

          Rodney Stephens.
          (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


          • #6
            Flashing hot.

            T.J. had grey hair and wore it in a crew cut. Ala "Shell Scott"
            The story was that it turned white over night, that was before I knew him, so I don't know.
            One saturday afternoon another room operator named Ray Humphery came in the back door.
            Tee said, I heard you played Fats last night in the bowling alley in Bellaire.
            Ray said yeah I should've beaten him, but he got me.
            Tee said why would you go out there to play, I know a big crowd followed out there, you could have played here and helped my business.
            After all Ray "you owe me some money"
            Ray was facing toward me but Tee was between us.
            Ray said " I might not ever pay you"
            I saw the color rush up T.J.'s neck and turn his ears bright red and Tee hit him with that left hook and knocked him into the telephone booth, There was a guy in the booth, the guy weighed probably 260 lbs. He had the door shut talking on the phone.
            It didn't matter, the door flew open and I heard a high pitched sound like Ching, ching, ching, ping.
            Ray wasn't out, but was out of it.
            A couple of guys grabbed Ray and drug him in the kitchen and stuck his head under the faucet in the sink.
            About 10 minutes later Ray came out of the bar with a beer and got in T.J.'s space and said what's the matter with you, why did you hit me ?
            I was behind Tee and saw the red start up his neck, I ran over and grabbed Ray and told him he needed to get out of there. He started arguing with me and he looked down and said," wait a minute somebody stole my ring"
            A light went on in my mind and heard the ching, ching. I said, no I don't think so, let's look for it.
            We found it in the back corner, against the wall, about 30 feet from the phone booth.
            more about the kicking later.
            Last edited by androd; 02-15-2017, 11:46 PM.

            Rodney Stephens.
            (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


            • #7
              Filthy McNasty

              A stranger showed at parkers and said he was broke and would sweep out the joint for $3.00 I told him talk to T.J. Next thing I know he pushing the broom all around and did a hell of a job.

              He got paid and hung around for a while and finally asked a hacker he'd clocked to play one pocket for a dollar.
              He won 5 or 6 bucks, paid his time and introduced himself as Don Keith, said call me lefty.

              When I left he was playing another non player, I came back the next day and they were still playing. Now lefty was giving a small spot and they were playing on the wire. They had raised the bet and lefty won about $30.00 and got his money.

              T.J. had watched the game and told me Lefty can play some, I'm not sure how good.

              After a couple of days T.J. saw the light and cut into Lefty and steered him into a few customers that T.J. didn't let anyone hustle, unless he was in.
              They made several nice scores and Lefty now had some cash.

              A lot of guys around the room that hadn't woke up before daylight started hustling Lefty, he played just good enough not to lose, but managed to win several hundred. His bankroll was now about $800.00 and he was crowing.

              U.J. Puckett and some youngster came in to take him off. He wouldn't play Puckett and he wouldn't play the kid 9ball. After stalling around a day the kid said ok I'll play one pocket.

              They started for $50.00 a game and see sawed a while and Lefty got a game winner. Puckett and the kid had a conference and they started again.
              Puckett had a handful of coins and if the kid started to shoot a shot U.J. didn't like, he'd start rattling the coins.
              The stall was off and Lefty won two games real fast and Puckett pulled up.
              Puckett said the kid needs a spot, Lefty said I'm letting you coach him with the rattle, how much more can I spot him.

              We all got a big kick out of that, everyone was laughing and U.J. started laughing too.
              More about Lefty later.
              Last edited by androd; 03-12-2017, 06:47 PM.

              Rodney Stephens.
              (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


              • #8
                More about Lefty

                Lefty hung around and booked some more winners, I came in one day and someone asked have you seen Lefty's car ?
                He heard that and came over and drug me outback to show it.
                He had bought a cream puff 52 buick, it looked new inside and out.

                I asked how much, he said $800.00, this was about 1964 and 12or13 year old cars were worth a few hundred, $800.00 was a premium but it was really nice.

                He left town around then and was gone a couple of months, when he came back he was riding a boxcar, was dirty and filthy and the Buick was long gone.

                I asked what happened, he said " I don't want to talk about it " he scuffled up a little money in the next few weeks and rented a flop hotel room at the train station down the road.
                I came in early a few weeks later, he was the only one there beside the house man.
                We talked a while and I asked what happened to you face, he said T.J. hit me last night, it was my fault I was ragging on Fireman Lee to play, he didn't want to but I kept after him and T.J. told me to leave him alone.
                I was drinking and I started on Lee again and T.J. popped me.
                I asked did he kick you, he said no.

                I said I'm going to get some breakfast, I'm buying. He said I don't feel to good, would you give me a ride to the hotel? Sure c'mon.

                We're riding to his hotel and he said can we go by the drugstore, I think I'm coming down with a cold.
                He went in and came back with cough syrup, and I dropped him off.

                I had breakfast and went back to the pool room and a few people were there.
                A guy came over and asked did you hear T.J. hit Lefty last night?
                Lefty told me, he said he didn't kick him. The guy laughed and said Tee knocked him out and kicked him in the chest, he slid about 4 feet.

                I started laughing and thinking about the cough syrup, I'm sure Lefty didn't know about the kick and thought his sore chest was a cold coming on.
                Last edited by androd; 02-15-2017, 11:53 PM.

                Rodney Stephens.
                (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


                • #9
                  Reminiscing about Memphis.

                  We hustled a lot of pool around there, you could go 50 to 80 miles away and play pool every day.
                  We played in west Memphis Ark, Blackfish lake ark, Marianna ark, Roe Ark, Marked tree Ark, Blytheville Ark, Trumann Ark, Paragould Ark, Oxford Miss, Bruce Miss, South Haven Miss, Hayti mo, Popular Bluff Mo, Dyersburg tn, tiptonville tn, Fulton tn/ky. Jackson tn.

                  We drove back to Memphis most every night, we had a hell of a deal at a Travelodge motel there.
                  The night clerk played pool and liked us, we paid about $12.00 a night and got the 7th day free.

                  In Blackfish the pool table was in an old store, The owner called a guy and he came riding up on a tractor.

                  In Roe the owner was a horse bookie, he had a cafe with a pool table, next to a dance hall. Tourist courts in back with hookers and a crap game.

                  In Marked tree, on Saturday they only let kids in, they didn't have to be 18 only be able to count to 18. They looked about 10yrs up to 13yrs most had tattoos and smoked cigars.

                  In trumann was the cotton club, fri and sat there would be at least 100 people, seemed more.The gambler there owned a car lot, in the back a metallic building repair shop, in the back of that a bar table and a craps table. The year before when we were there I won $2200.00 playing knock poker with him, so we played 9ball at the cotton club and I lemoned off $300.00
                  getting the 8ball. He knew Jimmy or bigfoot as they called him, was a very good player, but he thought I was the Stake Horse. This current year he'd hired a craps dealer who was a good pool player.

                  The car man, Bill Hannah woke us up banging on our motel room door at 8:30 AM, he said, when I saw that Texas License plate I figured it was pool players. You can't make any money in bed, come on down to the cotton club. When we got there, the dealer, Smitty was playing the Sniper and 4 games winner. James got even and quit, said he had to go to Jonesboro and get his laundry. After Bill wouldn't let Smitty play, Jimmy said let's go to Paragould, I said I'll hang here.
                  Bill tried to match me with Smitty but I ducked him. I told Bill, I've been practicing and I'll play you even, Smitty said no way, Bill's terrible. They got their heads together and Bill said you give me the 8ball and we'll play for a hundred a game.
                  Five games later, I won them all, Smitty said now you'll have to play me. I stalled and said ok but I use your cue and you play off the wall, the game was on.

                  My cue was in the car with Jimmy and the house cues had plastic tips, an hour or more later I'm another 5 games winner, Smitty said the only thing you can do now is go downtown and play one pocket $200.00 a game, I didn't stall, I said well I've got y'all loser, lets go. He didn't have much of a chance, even though the tables were 4x8's. We won serious money there.

                  In paragould was a player named Sugar Mill, poor fellow was dirty and filthy, had no teeth and a family of 4 or 5 kids. The regulars there would stake him playing Snooker for a hundred a game. I saw him at the cotton club once, he had on an old raggedy sport coat, and worn out tennis shoes, he was dressed up to go there hustling pool. They told me his whole family picked cotton every day and put the youngest on a pallet under a shady spot. Jimmy didn't catch him that day but won $70.00 from someone else. I heard Sugar was killed in a car wreck a couple of years later.

                  In Hayti we stayed a couple of weeks the action was so good. Only one place in town to play, the town lounge. They had a jukebox that only had Merle Haggard songs.
                  The best player was named Black Island, I asked, they said he's dark complected and was born on an Island in the Mississippi river.
                  There was a poker game run by the town that started at 7AM he was always there first, if he got a little winner or not loser he could sell his seat for $50.00 when the farmers got to town. He'd then come to the town lounge and play pool.
                  After about a week of us winning a little cash every day, some of the regulars went somewhere down in Arkansas and got Hayti Bill, he was a legend around there but had moved the previous year. They wanted action and I went to the motel and got Jimmy up. When we got back to the lounge Jimmy got a roll of quarters and said, i just got up, I want to hit some balls. He started making balls from everywhere, I went over and said maybe you could miss a few, he said don't worry, this guys getting staked, they drove however many miles to get him, he's got his reputation to think of, he's going to play. Jimmy shot everything in for the next 10 minutes, said I'm ready.
                  He completely destroyed Bill, who was paralyzed after watching Jimmy pour balls in.

                  Enough of my rambling.
                  As MrT said "I got a lotta more" but I may've worn out my welcome ?

                  Last edited by androd; 04-22-2018, 05:13 PM.

                  Rodney Stephens.
                  (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


                  • #10
                    More about Lefty and Memphis

                    On this trip through Memphis we saw lefty in the pool room downtown.
                    He was dressed real nice, new shoes, sansabelt slacks, nice looking sport coat.
                    I said man you look sharp, you must be going good ?
                    He said I'm living with a good looking Widow who owns a bar. she bought me some clothes and lets me drive that Pontiac out there. wow says I, you hit the lottery.

                    While we were there Martin Luther King was shot, the town became a mad house.
                    People had an excuse to loot the Pawn Shops on Beale St. The rioting spread and the police had their hands full, later riots began to break out all around town
                    When things slowed down officials installed a curfew. We went to the downstairs pool hall on the city square, it was owned by Raby and full of players and action all day, when the curfew time came some left but quite a few stayed. The owner of the room on Park Ave, named A.J. stayed also.

                    Like Jeff said, I called home most nights, and I needed a pay phone, so I didn't have to pay. I peeked out the door and all was quite so I went up the street a few blocks and found a phone. Just as the operator was talking to the wife, the loudest howling you can imagine started. I had no idea what it was, so I beat it back to the pool room.

                    I asked what is that terrible howling, they said that's a tornado warning, wow, I guess were safe since we're downstairs. They said it's no problem they never come here, the high bank of the river turns them and they follow the river upstream til the high bank, which is the deep side changes. It'll go ashore at Germantown.

                    I read the paper the next day and sure as shooting that's what happened.

                    More Memphis pool later.

                    Rodney Stephens.
                    (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


                    • #11
                      Back to pool in Memphis

                      we had won some money, the nut and a little more playing the locals.
                      I guess they got tired of seeing us win, so they said there's a guy down in Mississippi who'll play but he likes to bet it up. We figured what the hell, so we said call him up. They called him, he said I'll be there in 1 1/2 hours.

                      When he got there it was Sonny Springer, I had seen him before but he didn't recognize me. The game is on, he and Jimmy started playing 9 ball, $50 a game. An hour later Jimmy was 3 games winner and I hear Sonny raising his voice and growling and bitching about the rack. Jimmy said rack them yourself, he said no, I want you to rack them right, Jimmy said I rack the best I can. Sonny said in that case I quit.

                      Sonny prowled around and then asked me to play, I said no way you're a legend around here. I said since you're a little loser, I'll try some one pocket 10 to 7, he said 9 to 7. I said no way, He said ok $100 a game, I got a few games winner and he doubled the bet. He went right off for all the cash he had, never said a word, no arguments, nothing. Shook hands and left.

                      I asked Jimmy what's up with him, he said he knew he was going off but he didn't want his fans to see him lose to a young kid playing even, giving weight is different.


                      Rodney Stephens.
                      (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


                      • #12
                        Back to Parkers

                        I was working one monday, that morning no body was there except a shortstop hustler called Puerto Rican Mike.

                        In comes a guy wearing a long sleeve shirt ( it's summer time) khaki's, orange pointy toed Stacy adams, Tattoos peeking out the neck of his shirt.
                        Mike says $2.00 9 ball and they start playing. Mike is up $18.00 and comes up to the register and asks for change for a hundred, early Monday I didn't have it.

                        I said T.J will be here at 11:O'clock, because he makes a bank deposit this AM.
                        So they keep playing and marking them up on the wire. Now mikes got a string of buttons up there.

                        Right on time T.J. walks in, Mike calls to him, Have you got change for a hundred, he says sure Bud and starts walking back to where they're playing.
                        The guy Mike's playing says we don't need no change, Tee turns around and starts back to the counter, Then the guy says you can stick them buttons up your a$$, Tee just shrugs at Mike, Then the guy pulls a knife and says and I'm gonna take back the $18.00.

                        T.J. says no you're not going to do that, the guy says" who's gonna stop me ?"
                        Tee walked straight to the guy, he's swinging the knife around, Tee hit him with that left hook and knocked him over the back corner of a 4x8 and under the bar table behind it.
                        He calmly grabbed the seat of the guys khaki's and reeled him out from under and grabbed his neck and went around the bar table to a little table with a 16 inch fan on it.
                        Tee rammed his head into the fan, the fan leaned against the back wall and began to slow RRRR RRR rrr rr, tee backed off and the fan r r r rr rrr RRR RRRR, Tee stuck him back into it until it bogged down again. He did it a few more times. I can see tee talking to him although the guy's out. There's hair and scalp and blood all over the floor.

                        Tee turned and came walking towards the front, still talking to the guy, as he past me I heard him asking the guy "who's gonna stop me" over and over.
                        He walked to the front door carrying the guy like a rag doll. He kicked the door open and looked down the street and just waited, still talking.

                        It's a car length plus about 6 or 8 feet to Washington Ave. In a minute Tee started swinging the guy harder and harder, He turned and threw the guy as far as he could, about that time I saw a bus go by, The guy was lucky he only made it to the edge of the street.

                        When Tee came back in he asked me, did you hear what that punk asked me, he asked me who was gonna stop him.
                        Last edited by androd; 03-12-2017, 09:39 PM.

                        Rodney Stephens.
                        (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


                        • #13
                          Oxford Miss.

                          We heard they were gambling high in Oxford, so away we went.

                          Every morning at 7:30 am, the gamblers ganged up around the Coke machine, They drew pills to see who went first and bet $20.00 a man on who had the coke bottle from furthest away. Most times while we were there they had 3 to 5 players. They had a big map on the wall in case of an argument. I believe Water Valley and Springdale ? was a tie, they were near by and both had bottling plants.

                          The fellow that was the new owner of the pool hall, made a killing selling cokes over and over. He was also playing and was fading craps every night.
                          We didn't get invited it was a closed game. The reason I mention it they didn't play regular craps, they thought anyone who did was a sucker. The game they played was called shooting the numbers.

                          The way they played was a shooter would pick a point and anyone that wanted to bet had to lay him the proper odds, the shooter would point at a player, depending on how high the guy played, shooter would say I'm coming to you for $50.00 that meant you were laying $100.00 to the $50.00, next guy coming to you for $20.00. Bigger gamblers, coming to you for $ 100 and so on around the table.

                          Never got to play or watch, that was how it was explained to me.
                          When they brought cotton to market, everyone said the games were huge. They played in the cotton gin. Never got to play pool there so we moved on to Southaven.
                          We decided to take a shot at Richard Austin. His brother had a pool room in South Haven.

                          More Southaven later.
                          Last edited by androd; 01-14-2017, 12:45 PM.

                          Rodney Stephens.
                          (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


                          • #14
                            Southaven Miss

                            Jimmy and I had both beaten Richard in Houston, Jimmy at 9 ball and me one pocket.
                            We heard from everyone that he was almost unbeatable in his brothers place.
                            We decided to take a shot at him anyway.
                            The day we arrived we didn't see him anywhere, of course we didn't ask for him.

                            I got a cheap one pocket game $5.00 and won, I think $15.00 and Jimmy played some guy named larry and won $50.00. The guys around started asking Richard's brother where he was, he said out of town, back tomorrow.

                            There was an older fellow on the rail, he came over and asked if we wanted to go make some money. What's in it for you ? He said half and we said no we've got expenses, we said how about 3 ways, He said you take 60% and give me 40. We didn't have any thing to do so we said show us the action.

                            His name was Clarence Leatherwood and he took us into Memphis and to some bar spots, sure enough action was on. He knew everyone everywhere, some places he went in first, came out and gave us the rundown, other spots we all went in, the end of the night, we'd won $300. We took him back to his car said good night. He wanted to know if we were going to play Richard, the answer was yes and he said I'll come out tomorrow, but no hard feelings, I'm not in with it. Jimmy told him "we didn't get married or nothing. "

                            Next day we went about noon and Richard was there, as soon as we walked in he yelled across the room, get you cue. Game on.

                            They played all day til 10pm They were even and Jimmy quit.
                            We had to be all kinds of chicken shits, nits, no gambling MF's. We knew how dangerous Richard was so we hit the door. We saw Leatherwood downtown the next day, he told us Richard had lost big money in Mobile playing Cleo Vaughan 9 ball.

                            Cleo followed him back to Southaven and Richard beat him unmerciful. Won the cash back and more.
                            We left and headed towards Nashville.

                            More later about Jackson Tenn and Nashville.
                            Last edited by androd; 01-14-2017, 12:34 PM.

                            Rodney Stephens.
                            (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working


                            • #15
                              Jackson Tenn.

                              We rolled into Jackson about noon, went to the room upstairs and barely anyone there. We went to the street level room and ate, food there was excellent.
                              Back upstairs and still no one around.

                              There was a player that lived there, that went to most of the Johnson City tourneys. He got spots from the top players and bet it up. They called him Meathead, seems like his name was Cotton Something. I remember he was the first guy I'd heard of that wanted to play one pocket, so much a ball and play the til all the balls were gone.

                              He was kind of famous as a proposition man, The story goes he once went to Memphis and rented an apartment downtown near the newspaper, had a phone installed and put a guy and gal there, then he and another guy went around the bars and started talking baseball.

                              At this time Memphis was big St.Louis town. After a few beers and trivia questions he'd ask who was the leader in triples in the NL, well every body there knew it was Stan Musial, He'd say no that's wrong, back and forth and do you want to bet. The baseball fans all put up their cash and said how can we prove it, Cotton said call the newspaper, whats the number ?
                              His buddy, the shill would say 544-654-3925. the bartender usually had a phone behind the bar, if not a payphone close by.

                              Cotton would say, barman you call them I'll take your word. The barman calls and the gal answers Memphis express and the guy asks her the prop, one moment please, I'll connect you with the sports desk, the guy gets on the phone, sports desk. The barman asks the question, the guys says hold please, after a minute the guy comes back and says it's Richie Ashburn or whoever, the barman repeats it, Cotton picks up the money and eases out the door.

                              They just relied on people being lazy and not knowing the phone number of the paper.

                              He didn't show so we headed to Nashville.

                              Rodney Stephens.
                              (e-mail) #713-973-0503 is now working