Tuesday, November 29, 2005

"Peripatetic, Pathetic, Apathetic" Posted by Picasa

Written by Alexander Dumb-Ass (Dumas)

Tennistitan closed out his fall YTC season this afternoon by participating in a couple of sets with the new Three Musketeers. Titan and 'Big Al' Dio Dati cruised to an easy (6-2) victory in the opening set against Max 'Tutor' Tuchman and John 'Irish' Gallagher (he of the black socks with white tennis shorts and bright plaid flannel long sleeve shirt combo). Ugh! His dress is as distracting as Titan's motormouth on the court but far less effective! Set two saw the Titan pair with 'Irish' and almost pull off an upset. 'Irish' up 4-3 in games lost his serve at 30-love in game 8 and proceeded to mishit 9 of the final 10 points in sealing the (4-6) defeat. The final set was abridged with 'Big Al' and 'Irish' trailing 1-3 when the next group mercifully entered the court. 'Big Al's comment to his partner as they left the court epitomized the afternoon's play, "John, I guess we won this set because there was not enough time to lose it!" Titan is off to Florida for two weeks of action on the Southern Tour.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

My Brave Stalwarts Posted by Picasa

'Big Al' and 'Slats' staged a comeback Posted by Picasa

"Gimpy Knees" and TT played better today Posted by Picasa

Only the Very Dedicated...

TennisTitan and 5 stalwarts braved the nippy late fall temperatures today and engaged in four spirited sets of doubles. The opening set was delayed for 20 minutes as some areas of the court had to be salted and then ice chopped to put the asphalt in playing condition. TT and 'Gimpy Knees' Joe Cruz paired in the first three sets. TT/'GK' overwhelmed 'Big Al' Dio Dati and Frank 'Slats' Slattery in the opener (6-2) and followed up that success with an equally impressive thumping (6-2) of George 'Chemist' Hauss and 'Happy Jack' Carey. A revivified 'Big Al'/'Slats' raced to a four-love lead in the third set and scrambled to hold on to a (4-6) victory over the tandem of TT/'GK.' The finale of the morning's action featured 'Chemist'/'Gimpy Knees verses Titan and 'Slats.' The duo of 'Chemist'/'GK' proved too strong for Titan and 'Slats,' who put themselves behind the eight ball immediately by dropping the initial three games. 'Chemist'/'GK' won (3-6) handily. The level of play displayed by all participants seemed particularly high. 'GK' especially seemed to have a thing or two to prove coming off recent poor performances. 'Slats' summed it up succinctly for the group as he chided the defeated Titan as the pair left Kinsley, "Tommy boy, your hot air diminished the effects of the thirty degree temperatures that we started in, but 'Gimpy Knees' seemed to play better against you, rather than with you... I think we can all relate to that!"

Friday, November 25, 2005

Last Chance

The TennisTitan will be making his final November appearance at Kinsley Park on Saturday Nov. 26th... then it's off to Florida for two weeks beginning Nov. 30th.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

TT Welcome 'Fireman' Goldbach to blog Posted by Picasa

TennisTitan and 'Fireman' Bob Posted by Picasa

George Strait, He Ain't

TennisTitan paired with a new partner this date at the YTC. Bob 'Fireman' Goldbach and TT managed to win two of the three sets (6-2, 6-4, 0-6) played against 'Big Al' Diodati and John 'Irish' Gallagher. 'Fireman' Bob is just getting back into the game after a layoff of many years as a means of enjoying his recent retirement from the force. Titan observed that Bob needs to learn to "go up the ladder" on the court regardless of his talents in this area displayed over the years on a firetruck. Indeed, this 'Fireman' fanned the flames of victory for the beleaguered tandem of 'Irish' and 'Big Al' in the third set as he shanked ball after ball at net due to poor vollying technique and his inability to lift. And this after 'Fireman' contributed substantively in sets one and two by keeping his errors to a minimum with some deft rallies from the backcourt. Both 'Irish' and the 'Fireman' whiffed on several balls hit their way and these two must never pair together for any chance at a competitive match. Titan was heard whistling the George Strait classic 'The Fireman' as he headed to the parking lot. 'Big Al' suggested to TT that Toby Keith's signature song "Should Have Been a Cowboy" would be more appropriate.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

'"How about a Clean Sweep, Titan" Posted by Picasa

Maybe Alcohol Would Help My Game

TennisTitan and seven of his mates engaged in doubles at Kinsley this late autumn day with temperatures in the low 40's. TT again paired with Joe 'Gimpy Knees' Cruz for two "painful" sets of doubles against 'Big Al' Dio Dati and George 'Chemist' Hauss. Titan's legs and game were both hurtin' so today's results are not especially surprising (4-6,5-7). 'GK' continued his poor play from both the front and back court as he had done last week. However, Joe was sufficiently inebriated to think that his performance was improved over last week's showing. Titan's game had dropped several notches from his efforts on the 12th to eliminate any possibility he could compensate for 'GKs' decision making on the court. TT failed to locate or crank up his serve to his team's advantage in either set. Those aching knees would not respond in the crisp fall air and led to 'GK' having to take too many balls in which he could not sustain a rally. 'Big Al'/'Chemist' bageled 'Happy Jack' Carey and Frank 'Slats' Slattery in the opener. These doormats then dropped a set (3-6) to Bob 'Kraut' Kluge and Carl 'Spindley Legs' Gessman. As a crest fallen Titan left the ball yard 'Slats' yelled through the fence, "Titan how about picking me up in Dobbs Ferry, then you'd have a chance at winning." TT retorted, "Why don't I send your partner 'Happy Jack' in a cab for you?"

Thursday, November 17, 2005

The last point...always the toughest

Titan thought that this was to be his Superbowl III. The dream upset. All week Titan envisioned playing at the YTC against EBL Tully with 'Mr. Spin' as TT's partner and upsetting the tandem of 'EBL'/'Tutor' Tuchman. Not to be. 'Big Al' Dio Dati subbing for 'Mr. Spin' paired with Bill Tully and denied that opportunity.TT/'Tutor' had come back from a 2-4 deficit to seize the lead at 5-4 and had 'Big Al' at love-40 on his service when the balloon popped, dropping 5 straight points to give new life at 5-5 to the heavily favored duo. Titan/'Tutor' scrambled to draw even at 6-6 and 7-7 but ultimately succumbed at 7-9 in the only match played to completion (1-4 partial) this date. Titan's strategy of playing back against 'EBL' who regularly gets his opponent on the run with lobs over the net man (ala 'Mr. Spin') was effectively employed throughout this match. It wasn't until late in the match that 'EBL' decided to go for certain winners against a tiring TT playing the ad court by going 'short' with droppers over the net. This tactic would not have worked against the always-hustling 'Mr. Spin' had he paired with TT this date and played his usual ad side. 'Tutor' played a strong game both at net and in the backcourt. TT opined to a disappointed 'Tutor' "had I the same service success I had last week the uspset would have happened!" "And the pope would be Jewish," Max responded. But Titan had the final say as always, "Maxie, look at it this way, I beat you again this week."

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Happy Deutschlanders,'Kraut'and'Chemiker' Posted by Picasa

Joe "Gimpy Knees" Cruz with Titan Posted by Picasa

Stollen or Strudel

Titan was at it again today; with mixed results. TT cajoled Joe 'Gimpy Knees' Cruz to make an appearance at Kinsley by picking him up at his house on this crisp, sunny, fall Saturday. Joe left his "A" game at home however. He also left the 'heavy lifting' to the Titan. 'GK'/TT paired in the second set of the day against 'Big Al' Diodati and Bob 'Kraut' Kluge. 'GK'/TT rallied from a 2-4 deficit to capture the set (6-4). 'Big Al'/'Kraut' had waltzed to an easy 6-love bagel over 'Happy Jack' Carey and George 'Chemist' Hauss in the opener. The tandem of TT/GK came up a dollar short and a day late in the final set of the day dropping it to 'Kraut'/'Chemist' (5-7) after rallying back from a 3-5 disadvantage. The Deutschlanders rebuffed Titan on his service in game 11 in a multi-deuce affair even though TT produced three aces within the game and they went on to close out the set at love. Titan, ever looking for the excuse to explain away his defeat, opined to 'Kraut' as they left the yard, "You stole that eleventh game from me, Der Kluger." "Ja, meine freund" retorted 'Kraut,' "stollen ist gut, next week you try my strudel!" You seem to like 'the apple!"

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Garrulous Quartet Posted by Picasa

Ethnic Humor in a PC Sport

Your TennisTitan was not disappointed - nor did he disappoint - with regard to today's play at the Yonkers Tennis Center. Titan and 'EBL' Bill Tully paired against Roy 'Mr. Spin' Marzullo and Max "Tutor' Tuchman in 90 minutes of intense doubles action. 'Energizer Bunny Legs' was true to form with his magnificent coverage of the baseline as did 'Mr. Spin' on the other side of the net. 'EBL'/Titan dissapated a break-up, 4-2 advantage in the only set played to completion due to the tenacious defense displayed by 'Tutor/'Mr. Spin' in games seven and eight which they captured at the sixth and fourth deuce, respectively. Down 4-5, having lost three long games in a row, TennisTitan held his service at love to halt the hemorrage. The sides exchanged holds until 'Tutor' was broken in game thirteen enabling the Titan to serve it out sealing their (8-6) victory. The second set was halted at 1-1 in games as the exhausted quartet gave way to Mitch's instructional group. 'Tutor,' who had suffered a bitter defeat at the hands of the Titan on Tuesday groused as he left the court, "Titan, what's an old Jewish man to do? On Tuesday I lose to you with an Irishman, on Thursday I lose to you with an Italian?" TT rejoinded, "Max, I'd love to play with your Saturday group... then you and your buddies would have another reason to go to the Wailing Wall!"

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

"Oy Vey," means 'not today.' Posted by Picasa

TT and 'Big Al' dominated Posted by Picasa

Italian Stallions, Prez and Big Al Posted by Picasa

(sic) Mishagos

TennisTitan enjoyed a couple of sets of doubles this date, splitting his time with "El Presidente" at the YTC thereby saving his legs for Thursday's greatly anticipated indoor match. Titan arrived at the center only to find that Rich 'Prez' Prezioso had misread his schedule (as TT had last Thursday by not showing up for his assigned date) and thought he was one of the foursome assigned. Graciously and wisely, TT suggested that 'Prez' play the first set with 'Big Al' against 'Tutor' Tuchman and 'Irish' Gallagher. 'Prez'/'Big Al' came away with a hard fought (6-3) victory in that contest. Titan/'Big Al' replicated that outcome (6-3) in the second set and were up 5-1, 30-love when ushered off the court by the next group. TT's comment to the 'Tutor' as they left the court summed up the afternoon's play, "Max, it seems you selected the wrong Irishman to pair with today." With a twinkle in his eye 'Tutor' responded, "Titan, it's a Jewish thing, I like being the younger team mate every once in a while; if you were my partner, I wouldn't know if you'd show up!" Oy vey! TT will never live it down.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

"I'd like you to meet 'My Legs."  Posted by Picasa

TT/Chemist... "Stategists" Posted by Picasa

The Caribbean Caper

TennisTitan joined his cohorts on the hard courts of Kinsley this beautiful autumn Saturday and played three fine sets of doubles. TT arrived a tad late to participate in the opener as he watched bewilderedly as 'Happy Jack' Carey and George 'Chemist' Hauss defeated 'Slats' Slattery and 'Big Al' Dio Dati (7-5). Titan's late arrival gave him an opportunity for a 20 minute warm up on the adjacent court with Clarence 'Gazelle' which proved to be a boon. These two teamed up to dominate 'Chemist'/'Big Al' in set number two (6-2). 'Gazelle' is on "top of the food chain" in this Kinsley grouping of players. 'Gazelle' covers the court like a ready-made tarpolin. His speed enables TT to be free of most of his defensive responsibilites and to set up for winning returns on short balls that Clarence's cross court slice returns regularly elicit. TT's well placed serves and lobs drew the type of defensive returns that were fodder for the nimble, soft-handed 'Gazelle' at net. Titan's game proved to continue to be "on" in sets three and four when TT did not benefit from the 'Gazelle's coverage. The tandem of 'Chemist'/Titan routed 'Gazelle' and Chris 'Prosac Kid' (6-2,6-2) proving that doubles is a team game and that two experienced strategists on the court can defeat one superior player if he does not have adequate support. As a happy Titan left the court he quipped to the British West Indian, "Clarence, at least for today, "BWI" stands for "Briscoe Was Invincible.!" To wit 'Gazelle' retorted, "Bullshit Walks Inevitably, Titan!"

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Prez with Irish and Big Al Posted by Picasa

Back in the Saddle Again

Ta, dah... TennisTitan returned to the familiar indoor confines of the Yonkers Tennis Center this date. Titan paired with 'El Presidente', Rich Prezioso, in a convincing sweep of sets (2 and 1) (3-1 partial) of 'Big Al' Dio Dati and John 'Irish' Gallagher. TT, still nursing his bad knees, was able to entrust most of the hard work to 'Prez.' 'Presidente' tirelessly chased down every ball not within easy reach of Titan, and profitted as 'Big Al'/'Irish' took their game primarily to him. TT was 5 for 5 in service opportunities and was able to control points on his service returns without difficulty, most often with lobs over the net man to put the server at an immediate disadvantage. Titan feels that this grouping of players is particularly problematic in attaining competitive balance. Pairing 'Prez' speed, rather than 'Big Al's' game, with 'Irish' would not produce competive balance; nor does pairing an immobile TT with an equally slow 'Irish' produce a fun game. Titan feels that if 'Prez' game is not on, that today's sides offer the best opportunity for competitive balance.