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Monday, September 19, 2011

No news today - Guest Post - John Dermot Woods

The main story is that I lost at tennis today, 6-1. The back pages would suggest it was unseasonably cool, and my experience would add that clouds covered what sun there was. That’s good weather for midday tennis in June. A 6-1 loss is less than ideal, and, frankly, not even competitive. A set like that isn’t worth much mention. The fact that gives a loss like that some kind of import is that it stands at the beginning of what I expect to be a regular summer regimen. This is a regimen that couldn’t have been predicted, based on the facts that I had assumed all NYC public courts were full as long as the sun is up (assuming that, especially in Brooklyn, irregular work and work schedules and a preponderance of academics such as me and my partner would keep them full regardless of the day), and that I didn’t realize I had a friend with a beard (not the kind you’re thinking of) one neighborhood over who was also interested in a regular tennis regimen and available weekday in the midday. Also, I didn’t have a racket. But a friend from Massachusetts visited last week and helped me find a serviceable one at a fair price at the local sporting goods store. A HEAD racket. The hope is to win one or two more games this week and soon take a set. The prudent choice would be to work on ground strokes before focusing on improving my abysmal first serve percentage.

When summer began my intention was to start surfing again. It’s been a decade since surfing or tennis. Skills atrophy over time so I expected I would resort to longboarding. It’s been cold in New York, trips to Long Beach have been delayed (and surfboards cost more than tennis rackets). Tennis is more than a substitute.

Another likely result of tennis is playwriting.

John Dermot Woods is the author of The Complete Collection of people, places & things. He has books forthcoming from Awesome Machine, Jaded Ibis, and Double Cross Presses. He edits Action, Yes and is a professor of English at Nassau Community College.

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