I love the US Open. Always have. Always will. It makes me happy. It reminds me of my short-lived tennis career. And by short-lived I mean winning one tournament when I was thirteen, (that my dad still talks about).
My friend and I walked around the US Open grounds, watching other matches like the wheelchair matches- what? I’d never seen these before. The women were warriors.
After watching for only a few minutes, we both decided that the next time we complained about anything; like the slow moving subway, or the heat, we were going to remember that WE CAN WALK!
We admired their athleticism, agility, and guts. It was inspiring. And more importantly, the stands were in the shade. Sorry, but that mattered.
When we got back to the box (helps to know people in banking) and walked into the room, it was a lot more crowded than we had first arrived. People stood in a semi-circle, the room was silenced and all eyes were on us. I was half expecting to hear, “Surprise!”
It was awkward. I didn’t know what was going on or where to look. It felt as if we were in the wrong room. I had to say something, it was too quiet. “Is this Candid Camera? Am I on TV?” Is Candid Camera even on anymore?
Thank god people laughed.
The Queen Bee, who was in charge of the box, looked at me and said, “Please meet Lindsay Davenport.” I turned to my left and yup, there she was; a 6’2″ drink of water, smiling, and holding a black Sharpie. I had no idea what she was doing there.
The Queen Bee said that Lindsay was signing US Open hats, which we were all given upon arriving, due to the heat. She asked me if I wanted Lindsay to autograph mine. Lindsey was a little more than embarrassed and said, “Oh, no, you don’t have to.”
Oh, really. What kind of douche would I be if I turned down your John Hancock? Please. “No, I definitely want you to sign my hat.” She asked me if I wanted it on the inside or outside. I thought that was a classy move. I said, “Inside, so then it’d be my little secret.” What? She laughed.
The room laughed again and as my friend so eloquently put it once the awkward dissipated, “Well, that turned into the Dani show.” It always does my friend, it always does.
While Lindsay was signing my hat, she asked if we were watching some of the other matches. I told her about the wheelchair matches, as if she would be completely unaware of what goes on at the US Open.
I also might’ve regaled her with my spiritually conscious comment about how watching these matches makes you never want to complain about anything ever again.
I know but imagine how I felt. I was there. You’re only reading about it from a safe distance.
Lindsay’s handler told her that she had another appointment to get to and just like that, she was gone, along with a wee part of my dignity.
Until next year.