A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from February 12, 2013
“Draw for show and follow for dough” (billiards adage)

"Draw for show, follow for dough” is a saying that has been used in billiards since at least 2000, when it was the title of an article by Tom Simpson. A “draw” is a difficult shot that uses backspin; a “follow” is less showy, but can be quietly effective.

A similar saying in golf (from the 1920s and 1930s) is “Drive for show and putt for dough.” A similar saying in bowling (from the 1980s and 1990s) is “Strike for show and spare for dough” and in racquetball (from 2000) it’s “Kill for show and pass for dough.”


Billiard Dictionary
Draw shot (n.)
This is a shot where the ball is struck below center to give it backspin and thus spin the ball back toward yourself after contact with the object ball.
Follow (n.)
This is a particular shot, where the tip of the cue impacts above the center of the cue, thus applying top spin. The purpose of this shot is to have the cue ball follow the object ball down the table after they have contacted.

Billiards-For-Beginners.com
Draw for Show, Follow for Dough
by Tom Simpson © September 2000 – Al l Right s Reserved – PoolClinics. Com
Everyone loves to shoot draw shots (backspin). They are exciting and showy – when they work, that is.

In golf, there is an old maxim that says “Drive for show, putt for dough.” We have the same underlying problem, and need a similar piece of advice in pool, so I say “Draw for show, follow for dough.”

The problem is, just like in golf, draw shots (and drives) are sexy, but difficult to control.

Follow shots (and putts) are much easier to master, and are what wins matches and tournaments.

Google Groups: rec.sport.billaird
Newsgroups: rec.sport.billiard
From: “Steve Barnes”
Date: Thu, 24 May 2001 09:41:32 -0400
Local: Thurs, May 24 2001 7:41 am
Subject: Difference in accuracy using top
(...)
Sure makes it hard to live up to “draw for show, follow for dough”.

AzBilliards Forums
“draw for show, follow for dough”
Craig Fales
03-18-2008, 08:56 AM
I use the go with the flow philosophy on shots, meaning the natural angle if possible. As for draw versus follow it depends on the next ball and what I feel most comfortable to get it there.

Google Books
Basic Defense and Safety Fundamentals for Pool and Pocket Billiards
By Allan P. Sand
Santa Clara, CA: Billiard Gods Productions
2012
Pg. 14:
Cue Ball Follow Control
There is the old saying, “Draw for show, follow for dough.” This cool rhyme declares a valuable truth. It is always easier to control the cue ball with follow than with draw.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CitySports/Games • Tuesday, February 12, 2013 • Permalink