"Running The Table"

There have been lots of stories — real and fictional — about how various people have made a lot of money hustling pool.

What distinguishes Running the Table, at least according to author L. Jon Wertheim, is that Danny Basavich, aka "Kid Delicious," saves his life by hustling pool. Until he found his way to a pool table, Basavich was pretty much a child without resources who suffered from depression so severe that some days he couldn't get out of bed. Once he had a cue in his hands, he discovered that he had not only an aptitude for the game, but the extraordinary patience necessary to play the game not just well, but brilliantly.

Of course to some extent brilliance is Basavich's undoing. He reaches a point where even when he disguises himself, pool players all over the country recognize him. Eventually nobody will play him unless he gives them advantages not even the most accomplished hustler could overcome. As playing pool professionally is still a precarious proposition, Basavich would seem to be facing an uncertain future, which is part of the reason why Wertheim concludes the story of Kid Delicious with the observation that Danny's parents think it might be time for their boy to find a real job.

This program aired on November 1, 2007. The audio for this program is not available.

Headshot of Bill Littlefield

Bill Littlefield Host, Only A Game
Bill Littlefield was the host of Only A Game from 1993 until 2018.



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