MY PROMISE: This is the last Roger-themed posting until he wins a tournament or Mirka’s officially declared pregnant.
I apologize – this blog has transformed into self-therapy more than op-ed or reportage (I really wish I’d made it out to the desert!) I need a mental health professional who specializes in tennis fandom – kinda like the flip side of a sports psychologist. Why do I subject myself to this stress? Seriously, I wonder how many people talk to their psychiatrists/psychologists/therapists/counselors/psychic healers/religious leaders about the ups and downs of their favorite sports teams? No doubt such sports obsessions have led to countless prescriptions being filled for Prozac, Valium, Wellbutrin and the like. Perhaps all sports telecasts should be preceded by a Surgeon General’s warning “Caring about this could be hazardous to your mental health.”
Today I skimmed some of the fan comments on rogerfederer.com. Sad, pathetic, I know, but it comforts me! Someday I will do a post examining the various types of Roger fans and what we must all have in common (kinda scary thought.) But until then, here are some of my favorite post-Mardy Fish comments (I’ll leave the categorization to you):
“Dearest Roger, It was hard to watch you lose to someone who played very well today, but cannot even come close to being the kind of tennis player that you are when you are feeling your best. I feel like perhaps you need a little more time off to get healthy and back to normal again and I offer to you my own healing services if this is something you would ever want to experience or try. Regardless, I will love you forever, win or lose and my heart and love is with you always. Please feel free to have any one in your team contact me to arrange for a healing session, in person or via distance… it really works, Roger :))) I love you and send you infinite amounts of love, light, healing and balance to your life and essence.”
“How embarrassing my investment item of yours that i bought has been going down in value since the year started. Get a coach before you turn out like andy roddick when he declined.”
“Mardy Fish. Really now, Rog? Really? And where exactly WAS Mirka? Are you two in a fight?”
” I am sorry about that!However,we are still on your side!You next Gram Slam is surely The Roland Garros!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!vCome on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!vCome on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!Come on!”
This one is actually legitimately interesting:
“Tennis correspondent Mark Hodgkinson took a cheap shot at Roger and kicked him when he was down. Hodgkinson, of the Daily Telegraph (major British newspaper), wrote a dubious article “Fading Roger Federer loses aura of invincibility” (24/03/2008) in which he misrepresented what Mardy Fish said in a post-match interview. Hodgkinson wrote: ‘ A Roger Federer defeat has never been funnier…What a turnaround for Federer; the locker room used to fear him, and now they can joke about his tennis. They’re tittering behind their racket-bags, Roger. “In the locker room, we kind of laugh at it. We just kind of think it’s a joke – ‘Oh my gosh, Roger hasn’t won a tournament yet this year’. You know, he hasn’t played that many tournaments this year,” Fish, the world No 98, said after a 6-3, 6-2 defeat of Federer that was anything but hold-on-to-your-sides hilarious for the world No 1.’ (Link has since been removed, but I have a copy of the article)http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/main.jhtml?xml=/sport/2008/03/24/stfedr124.xml What Mardy Fish actually meant was the total opposite of Hodgkinson’s misrepresentations (read the questions and his comments about Roger in both interviews below). As well, Fish said that the best player in the world right now is “Roger Federer, hands down…he’s going to continue to be No. 1 for a long time.” http://www.pacificlifeopen.com/4/players/interviews/2008/fish322.asp http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=48484 I wrote to the editor-in-chief as well as the sports editor of the Telegraph, and here is the latter’s reply: “Thank you for you note regarding Mark Hodgkinson’s piece on Roger Federer.
IT WOULD APPEAR MARDY FISH’S QUOTES HAVE BEEN TAKEN OUT OF CONTEXT IN THE EARLY PART OF THIS ARTICLE AND THE PIECE HAS BEEN WITHDRAWN FROM THE INTERNET PENDING MY CONVERSATION WITH MARK. You should know that the Telegraph Media Group holds Roger Federer in total respect and the many, many thousands of words written about him in TMG outlets underline our belief that he is the greatest tennis player of all time. Best wishes, Keith Perry, Sports Editor, The Daily Telegraph.” The editor-in-chief has also contacted me and assigned one of his consulting editors to the issue. If you see nonsense written in major newspapers about Federer and you can prove it with facts, write to the editors. Chances are they will do the right thing.”