I was in denial about this for a really long time, but I have finally accepted it and will be coming to terms with it: Roger's days of domination are over. He's not going to go back to his 04-07 ways of winning every tournament in sight. He's going to lose to lower-ranked players. He's going to lose his #2 ranking and Murray/Djokovic might overtake him in a few months' time. He might not win another Masters title for a while. He might never get back his #1 ranking. I might be permanently late to hop on the once-awesome Federer Express.
But you know what? Whatever. I can't deny it makes me sad - really, REALLY sad. I've been watching a fair bit of his older matches and the kind of complete, beautiful, attacking tennis he played is largely absent now. I don't know what is causing the holes in his game and I respect him too much to seriously speculate; but the holes are there. The 22 unforced errors from the forehand side in the match with Stan say it all. His game is not clicking; it hasn't really clicked since the US Open last year. It may not click for a while.
But you know what? Whatever. Seriously, when I think about the eventuality that involves Roger hanging up his racquet for good, it makes me even sadder than any losses he's registering in the 2009 season. I missed the golden era of his career and that's too bad for me, and I should stop hoping he'd "come back" and be the Federer that dominated everyone for four years. He is getting older, he is going to have a baby, and he has been on the tour for 11 years which understandably would have some wear and tear on him, physically and mentally. What he achieved back then was a miracle, and things so good don't last forever. I'm really sad I wasn't around earlier, but I'm really glad I am now. I'm not inherently interested in sports and it was Roger's looks that got me watching him play tennis - the mere fact that something so superficial and insignificant got me this far? It says a HELL lot about him, as a person, as a champion, as a loser, as a tennis player.
Monte-Carlo was the first tournament of his I followed in which he lost before the semi-final. Considering I didn't even expect him to win the first round, I'd say this was a good result. More importantly, it really doesn't matter if he wins or loses. Having the privilege to watch him play tennis, transforming a mere sport into art, and knowing it's not going to last forever...I think I'd appreciate whatever Roger Time I can get. Of course, I'd rather he won every tournament, and for sure I get irritated when he's serving like crap and dumping forehands into the net and sending forehands long, but, wow, he's going to retire one day. Hopefully it won't be until 2012 at least, but that day is really going to come. After he retires, I don't even know if I'd follow tennis this closely anymore. No one does it for me the way he does it for me, not even the other four players on my top 5. He's the ultimate, really.
And so I don't care that he's not going to dominate again, I don't care if he drops to #10 or #20 (preferably #10 instead of #20 though), I don't care if he never wins another title. I'm just glad, and thankful, he's still around.
HUGS ROGER TIGHT.
In other news, I have barely managed to finish the first of the two essays I have to do for the Human Rights exam. It's about 500 words over the word limit which absolutely kills me. Now I have to do another one, and the first one took so damn much out of my tank that I took the whole of Thursday off, went to whack some tennis balls, came home, did nothing the whole day, waited for Roger's match to start (waited for three hours, shit), watched American Idol, did nothing. Have I mentioned did nothing?
Now I'm wondering how badly I'm going to pay the price for this stupid decision. Seriously, I'm so tired of this exam that I just want it to end. I don't even want to write a second essay. I feel like I can't, like I've got nothing left, like I don't even understand the question (in fact, I don't really understand it but I don't want to do the other three because they are too specific). And it's not even a terribly argumentative question, which is going to hurt me because I can't write a decent essay when all I'm required to do is explain, list, evaluate. That was precisely why I struggled so hard with the first one - half of it was just describing, and when I got to the other half, I didn't even know what the hell I was talking about anymore.
To top it all off, I haven't done a single damn thing for the Land, Law and Development in Asia paper.
I'm so DAMN tired of all this.
And, sadly, this entry still completely, utterly, 100%, annoyingly applies.
Anyway, this should not be news, but boy, I have a freaking bad temper. If I were a pro tennis player, I'd forever be ranked among, like, 300-ish because my temper is virtually uncontrollable. My reaction to that anal bus driver who refused to let me board the bus because of my coffee pretty much said it all. I was SO mad, I was throwing my things around, I flung my empty cup into the dustbin when the next bus arrived, I was even swearing out loud.
Even worse? My first thought was, "Okay, how am I going to make the fucker pay?"
Sigh. Law school + a really bad temper = a really, really confrontational, contentious mindset that reacts confrontationally and contentiously to every single minute event that doesn't go the way I want them to. So the bus driver completely annoyed me and embarrassed me - so what? He was just a bus driver. Where the fuck did my compassion go to?
I guess the answer is: When you cross me, when it gets intensely personal, my compassion flips on itself and becomes the exact opposite. This isn't just about the bus driver, it isn't just about my temper (though, yeah, obviously I have a bit of a temper problem); it's about why some people can stay friends with their exes and people with whom they were involved, and why some people can't. I can't forgive and forget, and sometimes I'm not even sure if it's me whom I can't forgive and forget.
This is simply who I am. I have tried to be another person, and I failed. The almost unbearable part about it is that there is no magic switch I can flip to make myself completely indifferent and immune, because I'm not. I'm still disgusted, at some level I'm still hurt, and as much as I hold you responsible, I will always hold myself responsible above all else.
Sometimes I feel like I can't take this, this insidious vitriol that lashes out at others, deserving or undeserving, from nowhere, catching me off-guard. Sometimes it feels fine again, like nothing had ever happened, but there are always reminders lurking in dark corners, jumping out on me and scaring me enough to jolt me out of my reverie. Losing so many things, gaining nothing but yet another bitter experience from which I can only hope to learn - what is the point?
I have a very bad temper. I lose my shit quickly; it takes time for me to get it back. Sometimes, I never do. Sometimes, I end up bearing grudges through years and years and years. I may very well end bearing these grudges for the rest of my life, and it's just something I'm going to have to get used to.
This is exactly why there are certain people with whom I'd never get involved, no matter how tempting it looks, how deceptively right it feels - I value them way too much as a friend to lose them over something as petty and trivial as romance, relationships. They may be able to take the moral high ground, but I know I won't. They'd just cease to exist to me - or at least, I'd make it look like they don't exist, but the only way for that to happen is if I went all Dollhouse/Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind on myself - two scenarios which are equally bad and nefarious.
To round it all up, I think I'm truly in a rut. Personal life, non-personal life, academic-life-that-is-soon-coming-to-an-e