The Tennis Curmudgeon


Are Those. . .?

As I began last time, I grab my favorite frosty, plunk myself down in my favorite easy chair to begin a long afternoon watching finely honed skills on the rectangle of dashed dreams.

Having already said that, I hope it doesn’t go against my word count because I got some things to say.

I’m enjoying the action but there’s a noise. A squeaky sort of thing. Like the time my beloved bride didn’t change the oil in her car for sixteen thous. . .no, wait, forever.

At first I think it’s just the old hearing aid piping up. You know how that thing perks up at inopportune times, just like my lovely wife, demanding my attention.

So I take it out and start fiddling with it, like ya do. And, wouldn’t you know it, there was that squeakity sound clear as a bell. It had to be coming from the TV because it was the only noise making machine in the living room. If you don’t count the humidifier. And dehumidifier.

I really start paying attention. I had to get to the bottom of this. I’m giving it all my deductive powers when the damnedest thing occurred to me.

“That fellas wearing black socks!”

I thought we’d have to upgrade the old boob tube because it’d just about worn all the white from the screen. So I start slapping the side of the TV when, right in the middle of my investigation, doesn’t my lovely wife chime in with,

“What in the hell are you doing in there? If you have enough energy to make a racket you sure enough can. . .”

Hearing aid in.

Hearing aid off.

Which worked out because the quiet gave me a chance to gather the concentration needed to get to the bottom of this. I still wasn’t sure if this man was wearing black socks so I began thinking about getting one of them big screen TV’s. Just to complete the investigation.

Then there was a close-up, slow-motion action shot of the player and, oh my! It’s true! He’s wearing black socks! During a tennis match! Never in all my born days have I seen such a thing! I figure maybe his luggage got lost and that’s all the poor boy had to use. But then I see another player and he’s wearing black socks right out there in front of the whole world and the ghost of Bill Tilden!

Now I know fashions change, lord do I know that, but some things must remain steadfast. And one of those things is tennis players do not play in black socks. As a matter of course, the only time they should is if they’re dancing at The Wimbledon Champions Ball.

[UPDATE] The editor said the champions dance ceased years ago.

And you wonder why black socks garnered a foothold! Resist, ladies and gentleman! Tennis needs traditions. What’s next? Yellow balls at Wimbledon?

‘Til next time, may your forehands land deep and your backhands full of pace,

Dennis

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