Mary Avina calls herself an Artist, Pool Player and Documentary Director, but to the Billiards community she is actually much more than that.
She is a wonderful ambassador for this sport not only because of her love for all things related to Billiards, but also because of her amazing attitude towards life itself. We here at Sneaky Pete Mafia wanted to find out a little more about Mary and she graciously agreed to grant me this interview.
Q: Mary, after reading the quotes on your Facebook page, I realized that not only are you a person who loves pool, but also someone who loves life. That leads me to my first question: What are some of the things that you like to do in your spare time when you are not shooting pool or doing a trick shot exhibition?
Mary Avina: My biggest hobby is eating. Second only to traveling, love to see new places, eat exotic foods and meet new people. I really work hard at making sure I take time to smell the flowers.
Q: If you could spend an afternoon shooting pool with anyone, who would it be and why?
Mary Avina: There is no particular person I would love to shoot pool with. It could be anyone who loves pool and would truly value my company. After all, I love meeting strangers, especially those who don’t expect me to be able to play. I love to see the surprise in someone’s face.
Q: Do you remember when it was that you fell in love with shooting pool and who, if anyone, taught you how to shoot when you first began?
Mary Avina: Yes, I fell in love with pool from the first moment that I played it. It was in a little dark bar and I lost. No, I learned the old fashioned way by doing it, at least at the beginning. Within a year I started to rely on books and later videos. I also learned from watching the best. For example, the first pro I met was Efren Reyes. I figured till I did as well as he did, I still sucked so I set the bar high. Later I actually ran with many pro players from tournament to tournament and absorbed by just having normal conversation on the game and techniques. Of course, all of this was done only in between my obsession with food and sightseeing.
Q: If you had to give up shooting pool and doing trick shot exhibitions forever, what would you choose to do instead and why?
Mary Avina: What I plan to do anyways is direct more. I plan on doing full featured movies, especially as I get older. Directing is like painting, but with a fuller range of colors as it really appeals to my imagination and natural skill sets.