Tiger's Jai-Alai Chalk Talk
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Foro de la discusión para el Cielo de Cesta Punta

hits since 8/12/03

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Question of the Week Archive (10+ years)
Re(7): What makes Magic City so Appealing..Answer is easy....

Yes I have. I was first brought around Jai-Alai as a child at Orbea's and North Miami Jai-Alai in the 70's - my father started playing in 1965 and had a chance to play at Miami in 1968 but my grandparents refused (I was born in 1969). I started playing in the Miami Jai-Alai school in 1984 and continued pretty regularly through 1988 under Aperecio and then under Jose Barrena. I played amateur at that time as well, but avoided the leagues. My first job in Jai-Alai was working the counter for Howie at North Miami when I was 16 - sewing balls and clocking people on-and-off the courts. Though I was very much a part of the school I was never under any illusions about my abilities. I had a great serve (still "kinda" do), good carom & cortada. Always had problems catching and throwing rebote.

I knew I would not go to Ft. Pierce or Ocala so I left for a year of boarding school in CT then college / med school in MD - dropped out of med school and started announcing in Miami in '91 (I recognize the math there is off but I started med-school in my Junior year of undergrad). From announcing on to management. I would continue to practice over the years at each of the frontons I managed - so my background in Jai-Alai is as traditional as any American can have. So yes I very clearly understand anyone having a difficult time with the concept of a glass cancha. This was something novel and cost effective that was offered to Magic City as an option and for almost anyone who has visited you really cant "get it" until you're inside the building. Once someone accepts a rubber or plastic ball the surface you play against becomes largely academic - all that makes a difference is the bounce. I warmed up to this gradually and I've said all along - this is not for everyone and some folks will never accept what we do - and that's ok.


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