Categories
Postings

Muguruza, Guadalajara, and Covid-19

“Everything gets on you fast,” said Aggie Radwanska of Muguruza’s aggressive all-court game: big whopping ground strokes, aggressive returns taken early, big serves and swinging volleys, her lengthy six feet of grace and power always looking to move in closer, smother her opponents with big shot after big shot. Covid came fast, too. Put a […]

Categories
Postings

Russian Stars: Medvedev, Rublev, and Shostakovitch’s Fifth

On the day Russia–or Putin–invaded Ukraine, the Russian tennis star, Daniil Medvedev, became the #1 player in the world. At his match that night in Acapulco, his wife, Daria Medvedeva, was seen subtly wearing the colors of Ukraine. In Dubai at another tournament, Medvedev’s compatriot, Andrey Rublev, the 7th ranked tennis players in the world, […]

Categories
Postings

Angie Kerber’s Smile: The 2016 Aussie Open Final, Art by Andreas Otto

I watched Kerber brood for years on tour. Did not remember her smile till she won the Aussie Open. This portrait painted soon after: big blue eyes, sparkling white teeth. Exaggerate a feature to express a truth. Caricature 101.   Angie’s smile like the lotus flower of Buddhist thought, a moment of beauty arising before […]

Categories
Postings

Ons Jabeur and the Arab World, Art by Colacat

Headline: Ons Jabeur Becomes the First Arab Woman to Break into the World’s Top Ten Young Arab women in 22 countries practice Ons Jabeur drop shots of outrageous height and spin. It’s about having the right feel. It’s about having soft hands. Girls in Tunisia and Algeria practice tweeners and trick shots like the one […]

Categories
Postings

Andre Agassi’s Wig

At dawn I sighed to see my hairs fall;At dusk I sighed to see my hairs fall . . . Did Agassi lose his first French Open final because he worried his wig might fall off? “Image is everything.” Vegas, entertainment, the flashy shot. When the going got tough, his beautiful zen-like-deer-in-the-headlight eyes. How to […]

Categories
Postings

Fanfare for the Common Man: Tim Huhn’s Art and Aaron Copland’s Music

Note: Took a week off from tennis posts to feature this artwork by Tim Huhn. Will return to tennis posts next week with upcoming posts on Agassi, Ons Jabeur, and Helen Wills Moody. Fanfare for the Common Man One man moving industry’s gears. The rising of cities. The coming of war. One man multiplied by […]

Categories
Postings

Delpo’s Diary (Six Years after Winning the US Open)

After Beethoven’s Heiligenstadt Testament* I have been hopelessly afflicted, from year to year deceived with hopes of improvement, finally compelled to face the prospect of a lasting malady. . . . Four wrist surgeries. One on the right, three on the left. The pain most often returns when I hit a two-handed backhand. I have changed […]

Categories
Postings

Gottfried von Cramm: Gay in Weimar and Nazi Germany

Weimar Berlin’s transvestite balls. Crossdressing women dance with crossdressing men. “What sex are you?” a famous line goes. “What sex do you want me to be?” The painter, George Grosz, saw one of Weimar Germany’s truths before anyone: “this gaily colored froth on top that many people mistook for the true.” Grosz’s art gives us […]

Categories
Postings

“Yes, Tennis Everyone!” Art by Brian Cowlishaw

Brian writes me that the inspiration for this piece comes from Donald Barthelme’s story, “The Palace.” In this story, the author is in line at a bank in New York City when he notices the yellow check for $84.06 that a Puerto Rican woman holds. Then he notices that there are many other black and […]

Categories
Postings

Ash Barty’s Fist

A young girl asks her mother: “How do you know if you are going to die?” The mother answers: “When you can no longer make a fist.”* Ash Barty’s advice to self: have fun be nice if no fun no tennis if not nice no purpose no spiritual . . . ask Evonne G. if […]