Garybsmith

Trading, Golf, General thoughts. Not necessarily in that order.

Month: June, 2012

Cycling out; tennis in

I was chatting with my dentist a few weeks ago, and she commented that my new found love of tennis would surely mean my cycling “career” was coming to an end.  I scoffed.  I mean, I had spent nearly 4 solid years climbing up the cycling ladder, and surely I wasn’t about to throw it all away in the span of a few weeks.

She was right; I was wrong.  With my usual laser focus, I’m never the type to graze from a variety of platters.  No, I’m the kind that zeros in on one entree and then eats until I burst.

And that’s the way it’s been with tennis.  Oh, I’ve always loved racquet sports.  In fact, I started playing racquetball back in the days when you hit with sawed-off tennis racquets.  What I didn’t anticipate was that tennis was equal parts fun and challenge.  (Endurance cycling could never be described as “fun.”)   Frankly, I missed the ball/racquet side of sport.

Of course, I can’t endure being “reasonably good” at something.  No, I have to be the best, or at least AIM to be the best.  That’s with a little perspective, of course: I just want to be the best 55 year old.

Can I get there?  Some readers of this blog have argued that tennis is a tough sport to conquer.  No question there.  And I’ve noticed that in tennis, club pros can compete in all tournaments.  So, you’re taking on some guy who’s played for 40 years and teaches tennis 8 hours a day!  And some of these guys even played on the tour.  No slouches there.

So, what have I found so far?  One, there’s no one in my age group who’s in better shape than I’m in.  My gosh, I scouted (yes, scouted, and who does that??), the USTA Mid-Atlantic hard court championships, and noted the vast majority of guys aren’t exactly Michael Chang.  In fact, about half had nice little beer bellys!

Two, even the best guys aren’t all that consistent.  Any long rally and they eventually make some kind of unforced error.  (I’m guessing due to fatigue).

Now, that’s not to say I’d step on the court and immediately win.  No, more likely I’d lose 6-0,6-0.  Truthfully, I have plenty to work on.

Still, the basics are there, and it’s a new hill to climb.  I’ll check back in after my first tournament.

 

 

 

Sirius-ly….stop

Let me get this out there before you think I’m biased: I love my Sirius radio.  It’s gotten me through plenty of 4+ hour drives when in past I’ve would have gone nuts trying to find a radio station.  Driving to NYC recently, I enjoyed 3 hours of non-stop “Classic Rock.”  A few weeks ago, I listened to the entire 2nd round of the NFL draft.  Good stuff.

So, when Nancy got a new car recently, I thought she’d opt to continue her trial Sirius service.  She didn’t.  She only drives a few hours a week, and the local FM news station is all she wanted.  So I let the trial lapse without signing up.

Or, so I thought.  No, Sirius is relentless in calling to follow-up.  And by relentless, I mean at least 3 calls a day from 866-301-7344.  Yes, I could have answered the first time, but I never answer calls — especially on my cell — from unknown numbers.

But, after 23 calls, I relented and picked up the phone.  The Sirius person went into their spiel, but I tried to cut him off by saying, “No thank you, I don’t want to continue.”

However, he wasn’t phased, wasn’t slowed down, and didn’t even stop to catch his breath.  He was some weird Freddy Krueger character that KEEPS ON COMING.    I mean, I tried multiple times to cut him off.  Begged him, pleaded with him, but he was determined to get through his speech.  I mean  it was impressive, but repulsive at the same time.

Finally, he had said every last word of his sales call and had to accept I wasn’t signing up.

I’m telling you, though, I’m still scarred by the incident.  Therefore, if you get a call from 866, I recommend you answer the first time and just accept their offer.  Easier for everyone that way.