Covid, the Unexpected Disruption

The tragedy of Covid-19 is not to be understated. It has affected lives and businesses around the world. But, for some, it provided an unexpected boon in sales.

Folks left at home searched for new activities to entertain and fill their time. They bought pool tables, dart boards and spas to provide some recreational distractions. And our friends at the online casinos report a distinct uptick in gamers, most new to the pastime. We were advised that things are evolving quickly in the online gaming world. New and imaginative games have stormed onto the scene. When we went to one of our favorites,, we found an immense offering of games that were new to our eyes.

We visited their new games section and they really seem to have something for every personality. ZZ Top fans have a game to themselves. There are light-jearted offerings such as “Chicken Drop” and even a cook-themed game featuring Gordon Ramsey. Check ‘em out!

Pool Rooms used their down time during the shutdowns to install new cloth, buy new balls, update the bar area and generally get ready for the time when business would return. So the billiard supply business has had unexpected business.

Of course, pool has taken its blows as well. The BCA trade show, where retailers come to talk face-to-face with their suppliers, has had to cancel their event two years running, replaced with an online show instead. And tournaments, for a little over a year, just came to a halt. That is a disappointment for the fans and players and pool tours, but a real problem for the vendors who do business at those competitions. And cue buyers, who really like to see and feel a new cue before spending perhaps thousands of dollars, have had a hard time finding anywhere that they can see a variety of quality goods in one place, One collector noted that he had always taken big tournaments for granted. “I could go out three or four times a year and see the work of the top guys in the business at every stop. Now it is just a desert out there.”

The way business has been affected has been very fickle. In the USA, State-mandated shut downs and stay-at-home orders affected most. But some states like Nebraska, North Dakota, and Wyoming did not. These, it should be noted, are some of the more sparsely populated areas of the country.Heavily populated areas such as California and New York had to be more strict in order to save the lives of their citizens. While the mandates served a hardship on many, we all recognize that they also saved lives at a time when the disease was filling hospitals and affecting thousands of households.

On a positive side, we all had time to practice those position drills we have been meaning to work on and we all got to know our dogs a lot better.

And now, just as we thought we could come out and play again, the Delta variant has arrived on the scene and pounced full force. Hospitals are filled again and there are not enough nurses and doctors to go around. It just makes you feel gobsmacked. What paths will we all take this time? In some areas, where vaccination is well accepted, life can be close to normal. But our luck really turned sour on Covid. No other vaccination program has met with such firm resistance. We all took our Polio vaccine and the ones for Measles, Chicken Pox and Smallpox with nary a complaint. No anger anywhere over these miracles that can protect us from death or hardship. But Covid found itself in a political fire and so suddenly, for this one vaccination, there is opposition heard from many voices.

Which means our futures are uncertain at this point. So be careful out there. Mask up and get your action quota filled in your living room while visiting online casinos or playing video pool.