I just saw Serena Williams lose to this Japanese newcomer in the finals of the US Open tennis tournament. At one point, Serena banged her racket furiously (very good form in destroying it, by the way – she got a lot of foot-pounds into it), and she also lashed out with an unrestrained harangue directed at the referee.
I would like to advise all the young wannabe Serena disciples out there, and older fuddy-duddies, too, not to engage in this kind of boorish behavior. Why? Because it’s too expensive (unless you follow my instructions below), that’s why. Forget about the morality and etiquette for a moment, just consider that Serena gets her rackets for free – and you don’t. She can afford to practice her vertical power drives (i.e., banging the racket). The rest of us, on allowances and pensions (who fix broken strings), can’t afford to buy a new Wilson Pro Staff racket every time we get irked (they cost a few hundred bucks each).
But there’s something positive to be distilled from this unhappy incident that may help a few of us who play tennis or ping pong seriously – something that can move us up in the club ratings or the ladder at your local tennis courts. Yes, here’s how the impecunious among us (that means those of us who aint got a racket company sponsor) can profit from this. It’s this: Use Serena’s racket whacking to intimidate your opponent! How? What you do, see, is fetch an old racket that you consigned to the junk pile on the top shelf of your closet, one that you haven’t used in ages. One that’s dispensable. You bring said racket on tournament day, and you warm up with it. After you net a ball or muff any kind of shot, you chuck the racket to the ground or floor with all your might (as we used to say). I mean you really have to strive in doing this to capture Serena’s form. This has to be a formidable demonstration of your powerfulness … and also your absolute lunacy, in demolishing a prized possession.
Lemme tell you something: Your opponent will be making in his pants (as we used to say). He’s gonna be petrified. He’ll be saying to himself: “Jeez, this guy only missed a shot in practice and he destroyed an expensive racket. Holy moly!” Yeah, just imagine how nervous he’ll be when you get into the serious stuff – the actual game. He’ll be so worried about a racket whizzing towards his head, he won’t be able to concentrate on anything! (Remember, you heard it here first.)
Now at this point you may be asking this very pertinent question: What the hell has this got to do with Parkinson’s Disease, and why is this guy runnin’ his mouth like this? Okay, hold on, I’m gonna tell ya. I’m getting to it. Patience.
It turns out that our PD group is uniquely blessed to have as one of their instructors, a person who’s expertise lies in the demolition field. C’est moi!!! I say, immodestly, that I have destroyed more tennis rackets than anyone who ever played at Kissena Park, in Queens, NY. In fact, I happen to hold a record that will probably never be equaled: I once hurled my racked over 3 fences (one fence on court 8, two fences on Court 12). To those of you uninitiated in such matters, let it be said that to clear 3 fences with a tennis racket was (and is) Herculean – akin to Babe Ruth hitting 714 home runs. And I can teach YOU to do it, too. Are you lucky or what. Sure, it will involve some sophisticated coordination skills, but I expect that we can probably generate a lot of dopamine in the process. Plus, don’t forget the bonus, the intimidation factor when you play in the next tournament. When they even see you show up, they’ll be doing you know what in their pants (as we used to say).
Now back to Serena and her referee finger-pointing.
Re: Tennis/PingPong: What happened to the fun? What ever happened to civility, courtesy and graciousness? Does sportsmanship mean anything anymore ? Is there such a thing as tennis/ping pong etiquette these days? Aren’t you tired of these prima donnas? (And don’t forget the primo donnos, either.) Do you think Rod Laver, Roy Emerson, Ken Rosewall, Arthur Ashe or Stan Smith would engage in such course and obnoxious behavior? No way. In the Army, they would call this conduct “unbecoming.” They’d court martial you. They’d stick you in the brig.
So I say, Subpoena Serena. Find her guilty. A night in the pokey may be a good idea for all of these brats.
Meanwhile, let’s just play for fun, okay? And don’t forget to let me win.