Well, I went over to Herbert's Billiards armed with everyone's suggestions
(including some very good advice from Fred Agnir). I brought along a good
friend who is an APA 7 so that he could observe closely and help verify the
center ball aim point and hit. After a relatively short period of adjustment
(an hour or so) I was able to to send the cue ball straight up and back to the
tip of my cue along the length of the table 10 times in a row. I discovered
that, once all my other ducks were in a row, Lou's advice to tilt my head
slightly to the left was the last piece of the puzzle that I had been missing.
I want to express my gratitude to all for sharing their knowledge, insights,
and experience with me. This generosity of spirit is RSB at its best.