LAST WEEK’S RECAP | October 19 – 25, 2015

As players arrived I greeted them one by one. First a newcomer from Montclair said she commutes by bus to work in NYC. The next player from Kinnelon emerged from the locker room and I introduced them as she does the same commute. I asked if she took Decamp bus like the Montclair player. She said no and I said – Ah you don’t get to take DECAMP! The Montclair newcomer introduced me to an interested player from Montclair (I think). I saw her write her info on a piece of paper for me using her left hand. Right after a player from Jersey City walked across from the other side of the lounge to join us. Perfect timing I said – Lefty player, meet another lefty. Lefties are an aberration or devil’s dominion, though they’re good in sports. We went on to talk about that for a minute before finally arrived the last player from Jersey City to be introduced to the newcomer, I said – Meet an aberration!. And everyone burst out laughing!

It was good to see a couple of winter players this week, from NYC, Hoboken and Tenafly. The Tenafly player joined the group 3 years ago but had trouble turning his head due to a skiing accident and he couldn’t quite get his game back. When I saw him this time, a totally different player showing his 10+ years of playing, consistency, shot variety and quite trimmed and tanned. People always amaze me as to what they can do.

A player from Wayne brought his 13-year-old daughter whom he talked about for a year. It was nice to finally meet the bubbly teenager. She is everything he said and more – happy, fun and a good player. The Jersey City regular said she has a Kim Clijsters (no wonder I had to look up the spelling of her last name and boy was I far off) forehand. The JC regular has 2 daughters who are equally expensive to receive all these lessons. Such a waste to throw that away to only become a securities analyst and the other current in an MBA program. Adding a picture of their tightness I heard that this weekend he’ll miss Friday night tennis for a weekend away hiking with them. I admire that he and his wife hold their 24 & 25 year-olds so closely. I kid but if only I had parents like him and his wife (and other amazing parents out there), I’d be an award-winning newsletter reporter and party organizer and not just your favorite organizer.

A newcomer formerly from Fair Lawn now from Bridgewater found us online. She loves tennis so much that she wants to join other nights. I’m amazed by her athleticism, having played and taken lessons only one year and she’s able to play as if she’s been doing it for much longer. The amazing Jersey City parent from above who is also my rater (a former HI state finalist in his junior year of high school and knows what he’s doing) told me she’s a natural at the net. Fittingly I found out that she was on the college badminton team back in Russia. We love to add another female jock to the group to give the men some competition.

The female jock from Fort Lee decided last minute to get her tennis fix. Oddly she stayed to midnight and not her usual 11pm, sacrificing an hour of sleep for an hour of extra tennis fun before early morning round of golf the next day.

Two friends from Englewood and Jersey City decided to play Friday night. They saw their old friends from Fort Lee and Palisade Park and requested to play them. I was able to comply with the Fort Lee but substituted the PP player with a formidable player from Kinnelon. The Englewood player was just as happy if not more, saying – Oh boy I guess we’ll have to run a lot. The Kinnelon player (now 38?, though I met him at 34 and keep saying he’s 35, bad math/memory) loves to drop shot as he enjoys ending the point that way.

It was great to see players from Westchester. I gave one friend from New Rochelle a great singles match which he loves every time he comes but not as fierce for the other friend from New Rochelle. I dare to redeem myself at their next visit, especially because she’s a fierce competitor and always smiling and having fun on the court, making everyone enjoy her court presence. The other Westchester players from Hartsdale and Riverdale had their usual intense matches before retiring after 3 hours. I love to watch good female players hold their own especially in big mixed doubles games. Someone has to be a committed cheerleader for sportswomen.

A player formerly from NYC now in Nutley plays on different nights with us. Tonight his spectator wife was able to join as a player. It was good seeing this former child player on the court again after picking it up a few years ago and stopping again last year. I almost had her hitting with my niece who did nothing but take lessons for 8 years, reminding me of another player from Parsippany/Nyack who moved to SF 2-3 years ago who also took lessons for 8 years. He wanted to become a professional player but his mother said there’s no future in tennis and he became a toxicologist. He never lost his passion for tennis, evident in his home only beer in fridge and tons of strings and racquets and minimal furniture. Interestingly these players who take lessons for years (mainly my niece, the SF fleer and other long-time lessoners) enjoy hitting more than playing and they can last for hours. There are different breeds in tennis or to each their own.

Again this week a player from Jersey City brought a new player. I call him the mayor from his apartment complex as he has an infinite number of tennis friends and even though he’s just met them recently, he looks as if he’s known them for years. Easily meeting and recruiting players, he can easily create a position as mayor!

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