Champion Billiards, Shirlington, VA

At some point, you have to teach your son have to play Nine-ball; what you don’t expect is to lose two out of three games.

(And I’m GOOD, darn it. No, really! I AM!)

I was playing Nine-ball here twenty years ago, several times a week, and remember the food as being surprisingly good for a pool hall; I would go out of my way to come here for breakfast.

The selection of beers here is marginal, but I did at least find a poor example of a Paulaner Oktoberfest on draft ($4.59); the victor enjoyed a Diet Coke ($1.99).

Champion Billiards has a fairly extensive menu that’s typical of a flat-top based operation, as well as a bunch of bad draft beers, flat-screen TVs, and now, the noisiest possible gym attached to it – the echoing thump of an exercise class led us both to believe the parking garage (below) was on the verge of collapse, and that our lives were in peril.

Buffalo Wings ($7.99 for a pound) were ordered hot, with ranch dressing, and were just not good; the quality of the Nine-ball itself ($12.60 per hour for two) was about the same. He got lucky. He did. Twice.

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