There's this Singapore tennis forum where people post request for hitting partners and form regular group sessions, basically a forum where people can foam at the mouth over tennis together because it's something non-tennis fans usually don't understand. It's a cool forum and the people are relatively normal because you're made to sign off with your real name, and usually people also include their phone numbers in their signatures. I don't go that far; I don't like random people knowing my number, even though, yeah, no one is going to be too interested in the phone number of someone with the username GameFederer (I used tripwires at first, but I couldn't validate my account so I signed up with my NUS email and chose GameFederer hahahaha. GameSetMatchFederer is too long). But still, I'd like to keep a tight lid on my privacy, thanks.
But anyway, I saw a post from a girl looking for tennis partners on certain days, one of them being this morning. For some odd reason, I was under the impression that she was looking for beginner players, which describe me to a T, so I happily said, "I'm free! Let's play!" That was two weeks ago. In the intervening days I went back to the thread for updates, but it never once occurred to me that the word "beginner" isn't actually in her original post.
Therefore, picture me, slack-jawed, racquet about to be Marat Safin-ed (i.e. Smashed - Marat breaks 70 racquets a year), my ego and pride completely pummelled into the concrete (or whatever) of the NUS hard courts, when I discovered just how NOT beginner the girl is. And it wasn't just her; it was also the other two dudes that came along.
I freaking almost died. I REALLY FREAKING ALMOST DIED. I'd never wanted to get off a tennis court as quickly as I did this morning. I'm perfectly fine with playing in a public place where people can look at you and gawk and point and laugh; but I'm not okay with playing with people that are so much, SO MUCH, better than me. I talked to the girl briefly when she asked me if I played often (er, not really) and then I found out she used to play competitively.
WHAT THE FUCK OMG. It was SO bad. My shots have got better, but that isn't saying very much considering I started with less than zero. And I'm convinced I'm not actually generating any topspin, and that I'm still blocking the ball back because I'm stupid, and my backhand has taken a hike and I've no idea where the hell it's gone to, and the frequency of me hitting a decent-to-good shot is like, 1 out of 20? It's just tragic. The girl had an AWESOME two-handed backhand, the best I've seen on someone not on my TV, and I couldn't help but totally covet her backhand.
Thankfully I was supposed to go for lunch with the extended family at 11 so at 10.30, I said that I had to go and quickly scooted off. Before that though, one of the guys offered to hit with me for whatever reason, which was fine by me because one of the drawbacks of hitting with someone of my level is that the ball goes...well, everywhere and nowhere, all at once, which makes it hard for me to get the proper swinging movements ingrained into my muscle memory (because I can't multi-task, I can't think of what I'm supposed to be doing when I'm also trying to get to a ball. Yeah, I really suck) I don't mind some consistency when the ball's coming at me. I'd use the wall, but it gets terribly boring after a while and I look stupid swinging my racquet around, doing my utter best not to throw it to the floor, all by myself.
You know, I really wish tennis racquets weren't so damn expensive. I can't begin to express how annoying it is, wanting to at least throw your racquet, but remembering that it's not cheap, and neither is a new one, and so you really can't afford to damage your existing racquet too much. There are already scratches on my new ones, and I suspect it's already slightly - very very slightly - bent as well; but oh my god, I really don't feel like spending money on a new one. It's at least a hundred bucks. I chose my current one because it was a bit less, but of course it's not as good as the 100+ one.
Sad, right? I know.
Anyway, on the lunch front, it was at this Hokkien restaurant - same one they always go to - and 99% of the dishes were meat, plus this prawn dish for which the prawns were unshelled and I hate eating unshelled prawns, or just prawns, period, so I didn't eat much. I was really sleepy and tired, and after a while I was so hungry that I was full. You know that feeling? Maybe it's just me. Oh well.