Tag Archive: serena williams

And now for something completely different for my blog: A Book Review!

First and personally, I am so proud to have finally found and tied into the public library here in the land of Spanish Moss. It always takes a while to humble myself again and do these things – maybe deep in my soul I should own a library! Oh I do, and it is just vinyl record albums. I digress again.

In the Autumn of 2017, I had three titles on my list of books to read and one of them was a no-brainer, when I heard about it, Maria Sharapova’s autobiography. I have always been one of her fans.
Why now? I knew I had to begin to read again because I was in a writer’s limbo, and you know that, as I stated in past blogs, in order to write well you have to read much. So let’s get to it!

I just finished reading Maria Sharapova’s first autobiography,“Unstoppable – My Life So Far” with Rich Cohen in record time (for me)! Masha (her real name in “Russian) weaves a compelling and enlightening story, with candid diary clips throughout that I could only put down to sleep, eat and run my own work errands. If you’ve ever wondered what life is like for a major player on the Women’s professional tennis tour as a girl becomes a woman, this autobiography is a must read and a real page turner.

It is the first sports autobiography I remember reading since The Roy Campanella story, as a teen, and more recently, “Namath” about my main New York Jets quarterback, whose style and ability I grew up admiring, although I must have read Mickey Mantle’s and others through the years.

I learned that we share admiration for Monica Seles, whose audible power release as she hit the ball (some call it a “grunt”, but it is more sexy than that to a man’s ears, believe me, I’ve had sex with many women who make the same sound when they orgasm) first turned my attention into women’s tennis back in the 1990s. Indeed, Ms. Seles’ story of rising as a teenager achieving stardom on one of the biggest stages in sport, the Pro tennis tour is similar to Ms. Sharapova’s!
The Author also emulates Lindsay Davenport, whose classy game I too came to admire and shows respect for another of my favorites to watch, Serbian, Jelena Jankovic`. We learn about her coaches and even a favorite brand of shoes in these pages.

She used what I call the “sandwich” format for this first part of telling about her life. Using this format allowed Ms. Sharapova to recount her life, so that the reader can get to know her better and it works. She started with the present unjust failed drug test scandal drama and then retraced how she got to this point, while setting up her feelings about going forward with her career and life. The major theme was to tell her side of the suspension story to help clear her name of being associated with doping and I commend her for that. Hell, the substance they flagged her for was not even on the list of illegals throughout 99% of her career, and something smells very fishy about how it was suddenly added. It is almost like the suspicion East Germans who were competing in the Olympics were under, back in the Cold War days.

There is a nice pictorial section mid-way through and I like how neutral her cover photo is and how she describes her relationship with her main motivator, Yuri, her father and their initial trek following the ugly Chernobyl, now part of Ukraine, melt-down, eventually into Sochi, Russia and on to Florida as unknowns when she was a little girl with a huge racket.

She speaks about what I have often wondered while following women’s tennis: her main nemesis, Serena Williams. Oddly, she only mentions her older sister, Venus once. I would have like to have read her comparison of their games.

My favorite quote is from her father, Yuri, who said, “When you let your brain overrule your gut, you screw up your life.” Wow, my mentor used that philosophy and so do I programming my radio shows and identifying hit music through the years! Even though I borrowed it from the library, I will gladly purchase it for my private hardcover collection once I move into my own home.
Nice job, tall lady!! Whatta twenty-first century Fox. You are a “hit” and I’d look up to you without insecurity, rating your book with five out of a possible 5 tennis rackets.

I saw a woman who looked like Serena Williams at a local post office here in Hooterville , TN a couple of days ago. She was tall, same dark complection, had a sheer white gown-style dress on (nipples showing through), a young girl was with her and they were coming from one of those huge, black, oversized SUV-type vehicles. We passed as I was leaving the post office and they were entering. This woman scrutinized me sharply and really didn’t smile – or kinda tried to – as I uttered a muted “Hi” and kept walking on by into the parking lot to my car.
I now look back at that encounter with more curiosity upon learning that Serena is having surgery on her right foot, and will miss three tournaments that lead-up to the U.S. Open in Flushing, Queens, New York.  This supposedly follows an incident with a broken glass at a restaurant recently.  So I ask, since the rest of the details are all “hush-hush”, what kind of tantrum did she have this time?  Recent memory past her victory at Wimbledon is of her threatening the meek little Chinese lines girl last fall at the U.S. Open she desperately wants to play in to redeem her image this year, right?

Which causes me to ponder whether she is the latest greedy, over-the-top, Jekyll and Hyde  celebrity personality of today to be hit by what I call the “karma payback bug”?  Like “T.O”, Steve McNair, Tiger Woods, Mike Tyson, and even the backlash against the selfishness of Lebron James, be careful how you do people you perceive to be “less” than you in your moments of  hormone-induced grandeur, because it will come back to bite your pumped-up ass whether big or small, celebrity jock or average Josette.  I was already wondering if Serena is on some kinds of “‘roids” after seeing how pumped-up she is (“swole” as Alan Iverson once said)  in comparison to the other lady tennis players – even her own sister, Venus – on the tour.  Hmmmm….’may be on to something here.

It also occurs to me that one of my all-time favorite tennis players, Monica Seles, never returned to her previous form after that jerk jumped out of the stands and stabbed her in the back of her shoulder many years ago – but she was a kind, outwardly even-tempered and humble competitor, and not to be put in the same class of the egos and misbehavior that I mentioned above.

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