A tennis friend just sent me this. By Jove he has a way with words.
How Tracy Austin Broke My Heart by David Foster Wallace.
from left to right: Melanie Heim (author of this post), Patricia Arroyo (disco squash), Louise Wilson (champ), Beth Ashbridge (ashbe), Jennifer Dorland (Jadore) Kara Popowich (kpops), Elizabeth Wainwright (Wainwright)
Susan Collins, the esteemed Republican Senator from Maine, asked me to forward this message to you:
Ladies, I haven’t been this inspired since Gerald Ford assumed the presidency. I had the good fortune to catch all of your matches via the closed-circuit spy cameras that were installed at SCLA as part of our Homeland Security Offensive on Liberal America Program, established 10 years ago. Though this costly program has done little to secure our nation, it has provided hours of entertainment to my fellow Subcommittee members. Here are my observations, which, since I am not seeking reelection, you may take as sincere:
- Grace and Skill – Louise, your footwork and seeming ease inspired all who watched you. I actually heard several people in the Senate chamber comment that we should do what we can to get you onto Dancing with the Stars – NY Edition, as you absolutely would outclass Mayor Bloomberg, Regis, and even Tim Tebow (if he has the guts to show up).
- Determination – Beth, way to dig deep and respond to coaching. Mackenzie gave it all she had (no wonder she was recently voted Most Relentless in the Northeastern Directory of Annoying Boarding School Graduates) and then some, but it wasn’t enough. I look forward to watching future drubbings handed out by you, particularly if Mel ever gets back on the court.
- Consistent Improvement – Jadore, despite playing an opponent who, at the least, was sandbagging, you rose to the challenge and demonstrated that no one on your team deserves Most Improved more than you. Your ascent within 12 months took Mel close to 10 years (according to a study of the future elderly recently completed by the Surgeon General’s Office). Wow your generation moves fast!
- Quiet Performance – Patricia, your game 2 win clinched your team’s championship, and you did it with little fanfare. You simply got on the court, didn’t give up, and delivered when your team most needed it. I have asked my colleagues on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to delay by three more years any plans to invade Canada. This has been done in your honor. I make no promises, however, about Peru.
- Leadership – Kara, though you didn’t have a very high benchmark to reach, you went above and beyond your predecessor, exhibiting organization and key decision making over the course of a very long season. You never lost sight of your goal and modeled excellent play-hard behavior. Your team responded in kind. If you ever choose to go into politics, please consider running on the Republican ticket. We could use a few more poli-hotties in DC.
- Celebration – Elizabeth, nice touch with the drinks. When you’re not playing, you’re supporting your team mates and adding to the overall esprit de corps. Though my colleagues do not embrace your politics, I secretly do and hope that you continue to influence both your peers and students. A few more of you around the halls of the Capitol and fewer Lindsay Grahams, and I’d consider sticking around.
- Longevity – Mel, have you considered tai chi or something else that would be a little gentler on your body? I’m concerned that you continue to tax our already over-burdened medical system with your ongoing physical ailments. However, I do admire the way you just don’t know when to give up. Reminds me of Newt Gingrich a little bit, but only when I’m really drunk.
To all the rest of you, congratulations! You are true patriots and warriors!
(by Melanie Heim)