Tracy lost her tennis match yesterday, subbing in the 4.5 league.
The United States Tennis Association developed the rating system back in 1979 to help leagues better ascertain players ability, so matches in the different levels would pit players of somewhat equal skill together, making the games more competitive, fair and fun.
The ratings run from 1.0 (knows there are balls and racquets involved) to 7.0 (professional making a living on the tour).
Most of her adult life Tracy has played at 4.5, probably easing on up to 5.0 on occasion…in other words, she’s a very good player.
But she loves the game for the camaraderie and the competition; she’s a fierce competitor on the court, yet gracious to the other team’s good play and gracious after the final point, win or lose.
Yesterday, I was in the house working on the computer and after Tracy came home from her match she replayed a bit of the back and forth to me, and then went outside to mow the yard. After about half and hour, the mower cut off and Tracy came back in, soaked with sweat. It does get warm here in Florida from time to time.
She said, “That was a really stupid way to lose a match.”
I have been a husband for a while, so I was non-committal in my reply, “Why was it stupid,” I queried. I hadn’t heard anything out of the ordinary in her recap, so I now knew there was more to the story.
“Frogs,” she said.
Not being sure what frogs had to do with tennis, I again waited.
Seems there were frogs on the tennis court.
Hundreds of ‘em.
Tiny, smaller than a dime, baby frogs.
I waited that one out.
“I picked up 20 or so before we started, just to move them off the court and into the grass, but there were still a lot of them there. I pointed that out to our opponents, and one of them said, “They’re so little you won’t even notice when you step on them, it’s no problem.””
“But that was the problem. I didn’t want to step on them, I didn’t want to kill them.”
So as she was mowing, it became clear to her how her game was off; she was avoiding frogs.
Not consciously, but at some level as she would focus on the return (and boy, does she focus) her focus would open up juuuussst a little to see if there were frogs in the way. She would adjust her footwork according to frogs rather than according to best play.
And she’s too much of an athlete and competitor to say that’s why she lost the game, but, basically, that is why she didn’t have her A game on.
God, I do love this woman.