The Professionals

The two weeks of the French Open have begun, which means I can watch professional tennis on TV at 4 a.m. and then play some tennis myself at 4 p.m., all the while realizing that these games — the professional one and mine — are exactly the same and yet not even remotely the same.

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img_tennis_partnerI’m also reading this memoir, a memoir that is and is not at all about tennis.  Mr. Verghese, you are one hell of a storyteller.

For more about this book, you can find the NYT review here, a review that closes with this sentence:  ‘The Tennis Partner” is about how we all cope with feelings of insufficiency and powerlessness in the world, how some of us manage to transcend fear and loneliness by connecting with others, and how some of us — no matter how well loved — fail.

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And speaking of failure, here’s David Foster Wallace on the difference between those who play the game because they’re good enough, and the real professionals.  He’s not just talking about tennis, now, is he?

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7 thoughts on “The Professionals

  1. Josey

    one day we will play tennis together. i like imagining a group of writers who play doubles kinda like the band with stephen king, roy blount, amy tan, kingsolver, barry and others–we’ll do the same, only play tennis vs instruments.

    1. Teri

      I watched a Charlie Rose interview with DFW recently — I’m always stunned for some reason by how softly he speaks.

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