Both my friend Gaston(Chrissie-fan) and my mom deserve credit for this one.I don't have any compelling personal account like Gaston did, but his re-evaluation on where TF belonged in his life has inspired me, in large part. In addition, it was my mom's b-day today, and she's basically the opposite of me in several respects; she's gentle, VERY forgiving(almost to a fault), and nearly always looks for the best in people even when there are valid reasons for not doing so.
I haven't gone back to the main thread since my most recent post on Saturday(not even to 'lurk' silently), nor do I plan on doing so at all in the near future. My last post was somewhat harsh on one of our Pull-String Doll(PSD) posters; that is, a poster who just repeats the same stuff over and over, like a PSD, w/o ANY creative or critical thinking skills: Caro isn't tough enough to win big matches anymore; respected coaches won't wanna work with Caro b/c she spends too much time watching golf; it'll be too hard for her to regain her old ranking now that she's lost it(and a couple other pull-string recordings), blah,blah,blah......Even so, Mom
wouldn't have been proud of my critical tone with the poster, and I took that into consideration.
What REALLY got me thinking, though, was when I got Trey upset; although he sometimes leaves me scratching my head with his posts
, Trey is one of the more likable, easygoing posters here at TF so, if I took HIM to the dark side, so to speak, then maybe it was time for me to look at mySELF and whether or not I was being sufficiently civil, and the answer was NO. As is often the case, the recipient of the venting was NOT the source of displeasure.
Ultimately, it's the sport itself that has left me fed up, NOT any of the regular posters here(not even the whiniest,bitchy ones
...you know who you are
). My fanship has been SOMEwhat unlucky; I've been privileged to watch the amazingly graceful Dementieva as she won the equivalent to a normal Slam at the 2008 Beijing Games
, and I thoroughly enjoyed seeing overachiever Marion win Wimbledon
Yet, I've had FOUR faves who rose to the top of the sport and then plummeted w/o any apparent hope of returning to the elite ranks.I wonder how the "punters" would lay odds on THAT one
. First there was Ana, then Dinara, then Petra & Caro(For those who are unaware, Petra--who's still a sweet, charming gal in many ways--has such bafflingly-stupid decision-making skills that they pull the rug out from under what her considerable tennis talent MIGHT have been able to accomplish). Caro has been the stablest of all four, holding her #1 ranking for an extended period, and she's definitely the mentally strongest of that bunch(which sounds like a back-handed compliment, I know
), so maybe--just MAYBE--she'll break that B.Goose favorites 'curse' and restore herself.
Even the bad luck with faves wasn't the #1 reason, which was, and still IS, the direction of the WTA in re several important issues. The sport has SO much athletic grace and beauty, and it has truly tremendous worldwide potential...WITH the right leadership.I'm NOT gonna bash Ana so put your PMS meds away
; I'm only gonna give you some direct quotes from one of her interviews that pinpoint the problems head-on. She admitted, with astonishing candor that, in her junior days, she dreamed of reaching the pinnacle of the sport and then achieving some sort of blissful state where she'd be adored and treated like a queen...and that everything would be easy from there on out. When she realized, post RG 2008, that tennis was a JOB and that everyone would be gunning for her as #1, she lost all her joy in tennis. Those are VERY precise quotes from her. If you don't believe me, then ask a hard-core Ana fan who has integrity, and he/she will tell you it's true.
That was NOT to bash Ana at all; it was merely to cite an example. Do you really think that she's the only attractive tennis starlet who has thought/thinks that way??? I realize that a great number of players are either rich or high-upper-middle-class girls who have been pampered much of their lives and expect the same from the WTA and, TO AN EXTENT, the WTA has to make the tour pleasant for 'the talent'. However, IMO, they go WAY too far with that, and it's only gotten worse during the Allaster reign. Ana wasn't crazy back in her junior days; she had EVERY REASON to believe--with HER looks--that she'd be spoiled rotten if she ever got to #1. I grew up on the NFL,boxing and ice hockey--sports where the athletes take a huge amount of punishment and even suffer shortened lives as a result. Maybe that's why it disgusts me to see an athlete QUIT b/c of medical 'emergencies' like Bad Hair Day or Chapped Lips
Perhaps I'm in an extreme minority of tennis fans; we know that, as FIFA ONLY considered replay due to the tidal wave of criticism from assoc. football fans, the WTA won't change their tradition of OVER-coddling already-spoiled athletes unless the fans demand it. As a hard-working individual, I don't understand why OTHER working people would fork over hundreds of euros/pounds/pesos/whatever for ONE ticket to watch a player who refuses to get a fitness coach and just does the bare minimum of training to survive a couple sets(am NOT singling out any particular player here)...or a player who defaults at the slightest, minute trace of physical discomfort...or a player who's clearly tanking her ass off and can't wait for her opponent to win.
If I'm just a wacko who's in a 1% minority, if nobody else expresses their displeasure to Ms. Allaster, then things will never change, of course. Physically attractive players who do promos will be subtly re-assured that they can cheat the fans without end and offer low-quality play as long as they stay pretty and the cash keeps rolling in, and the overwhelming majority of players will NOT put in the extra effort to be great as long as they are TREATED, and pampered, like a mega star merely for being nice-looking. Every sport must serve its players to a certain degree, but I'm not aware of ANT other one that purposely enables its athletes even when they KNOW that he/she is lying(about fake injuries or whatever, usually the former).
I'd apologize for the length of this post
yet wanted to make it crystal clear why I was going to become, essentially, no more than a once-per-month poster. I'll still quickly check my PM heading every day in case Gaston(or anyone else) opts to check in with me again, and I'll come here to celebrate if Caro shocks us and wins a Slam but(will also closely follow her results and career moves), other than Dementieva's sub-forum for retired players, today is my last one as a semi-regular poster. All of you should WELL know about my bluntness
, so you can take it as fact that I don't have ill will towards ANY of you. For you youngsters, good luck with your studies and, for post-college adults, all the best to you as you search for genuine fulfillment.Nos vemos