On GOATs and STOATs

The Australian Open is officially underway, which means Fashion Face-offs are right around the corner. A concerned reader advised me to write a couple of “warm-up” posts before tackling the face-offs. I guess it’s been so long I might hurt myself. So here’s a nice, gentle stretch of a post to ease back into things…

Last night was kind of crazy, wasn’t it? The Super Bowl and the Australian Open starting at the same time. It was hard to know what to watch—there were a lot of GOAT storylines between those two events.

Serena won her first-round match in her quest to eclipse Margaret Court’s grand slam record and become the undisputed GOAT.

Djokovic played last night as well, looking to close the GOAT gap between him and 20-slammers Federer and Nadal.

And Tom Brady won yet another Super Bowl, although I’m not sure who he’s competing with at this point. I think he’s got that GOAT thing pretty well wrapped up.

There’s not much I can add to the GOAT debates. Instead, I’ll offer up a different mammalian superlative: the STOAT.

If you love crossword puzzles (looking at you, Karla) or are just a smarty-pants, you’ll recognize stoat as the weasel-like animal whose coat turns white in the winter. Here he is in his summer outfit:

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And here are his winter whites, when he’s also known as an ermine.

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Kind of cute, isn’t he?

Only we’re talking about a different STOAT, namely, the Stupidest Trophy Of All Time.

I have a spreadsheet where I save blog post ideas, and one of them is for a Fashion Face-off for tennis trophies. As with the majors, after deciding the best-looking trophy, we’d go on to vote on the worst. Trust me, there are some doozies out there.

But if I ever get around to writing that blog, we’ll have to settle on picking the runner-up. The worst of the worst was decided last week. Nothing can beat the shellacked marsupial board presented to Ash Barty at the Yarra Valley Classic.

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God bless Ash Barty. Is she a good sport or what?

A trophy this remarkable really ought to have a name. The Wimbledon’s ladies’ champion wins The Venus Rosewater Dish, so in keeping with the culinary theme, I’m going to suggest The Wombat Platter.

Can you come up with a better name? I doubt it, but a can of tennis balls to you if you do.

Did you watch the Super Bowl or the Australian Open? Who’s the GOATiest GOAT, Serena or Tom?

Acronyms, Masks, and Half-Assed Musings

It’s a LittleYellowBall smorgasbord today. A tennis tapas, if you will. A buffet of thoughts, none of which merits its own blog post but which together just might add up to a crunchy and satisfying blog salad. Continue reading “Acronyms, Masks, and Half-Assed Musings”

My Tennis Resolutions

There are two types of people. Those who like New Year’s resolutions and those who don’t.

I’m firmly in the camp of resolvers. I love envisioning a new and improved version of me, one in which I’m flossing religiously and filing all my paperwork away and running 10Ks and drinking juiced kale for breakfast. That me is friggin’ awesome. Continue reading “My Tennis Resolutions”

Gongoozling in the Digital Age

Have you forgotten our new vocabulary word already? Gongoozling means to be a spectator. (It also means something else which is NOT the subject of this post.) Go retake our vocab quiz if you need a refresher.

My (now frozen) shoulder still has me sidelined, so instead of playing yesterday, I gongoozled. I couldn’t watch my own team—they were playing an away match and I didn’t have time to make the trip. Instead, I watched one of my club’s other teams play its home match. Such inspiring tennis!

Here’s something I noticed yesterday, and not for the first time. I was talking quietly with another gongoozler when I overheard someone say, “Oh, wow—great shot.”

I looked back to the court, but of course I’d missed the whole thing. “No matter,” an inane voice in my head piped up. “I’ll just rewind it.” Continue reading “Gongoozling in the Digital Age”

Holiday Tennis Gifts

Happy Cyber Monday, guys!

If you’re tackling your online holiday shopping today, check out the gift shop at the International Tennis Hall of Fame.

The shop stocks some nifty tennis-themed items, like Sugarpova candy, adorable ball-and-racquet cheese spreaders, fun hair ties, tote bags, vintage tennis can thermoses, and much more. They’re perfect for that special tennis player or blogger in your life. Continue reading “Holiday Tennis Gifts”

The Word Nerd Quiz

Did you know November is National Novel Writing Month? Participants in NaNoWriMo, as it’s commonly called, commit to writing a 50,000-word manuscript in 30 days. If you haven’t started your novel, it’s not too late—you’re only 1,666 words behind. (Unless, of course, you’re reading this on Sunday, in which case you’re 3,332 words behind. Better get busy.)

I should have no trouble tapping out 1,666 words a day since I’m again sidelined from tennis. More shoulder woes. I’m hoping it won’t take too much longer before I’m back on the court. In the meantime, I’m relegated to the lesser role of gongoozler.

Isn’t that fun to say? Gongoozler! As you’ve no doubt surmised, it means spectator. You can also use it as a verb—gongoozle—but after looking that up online, I’ve discovered an alternate meaning I’d prefer not to invoke. I’ll leave you to uncover that particular definition on your own—I am NOT going there.

Yes, I know. Now you want to go there. Fine. I’ll wait while you go google it… Continue reading “The Word Nerd Quiz”

Fashion Face-off: Best Dressed Woman at the US Open (2019)

Right now I’m settling in to watch the women’s finals. What better time to nominate the three women who will vie for our coveted best-dressed award?

Sadly, neither Serena Williams nor Bianca Andreescu will receive a nomination. On the other hand, they’ll each walk away from today’s match with at least $1.9 million. That should help soften the blow. Continue reading “Fashion Face-off: Best Dressed Woman at the US Open (2019)”

Serving After the Tiebreak

The other day, one of my tennis buddies said to me, “Let me ask you this question because you know more about tennis than I do…”

I’ve lived long enough to know that nothing good ever comes from that set-up. My face-saving instinct kicked in right away.

“What?! No, I don’t know a lot. I just write about it and pretend I do.”

We had a chuckle and then she asked her question. Naturally, I didn’t know the answer. I’m not sure I even got the question–something about the difference between clay court and regular tennis shoes.

This is why you never set yourself up as the expert. You will be humiliated. Continue reading “Serving After the Tiebreak”

Andy Murray Is on Tennis Channel Right Now

Any Andy Murray fans out there? After hip surgery and fearing he’d never be able to compete again, he’s back playing doubles on grass at Queens Club in England, a warm-up tournament to Wimbledon. I just happened to turn on the Tennis Channel–and there he is!

They’re still in the first set, so go turn it on!!! Continue reading “Andy Murray Is on Tennis Channel Right Now”

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