My friend W plays in a bare-bones tennis league called T2 where pairings and arrangements are handled by email, and matches take place on weekday evenings at venues of the participants’ choosing. This is in contrast to ALTA, a venerable Atlanta institution where competition is complemented by a social component that involves food, drink and post-match bonhomie.
Last week, W and his partner had a match that was so important to them that they went out the night before and practiced. But they still lost, 6-3, 6-4, and at the men’s group meeting two days later he was still stewing about it.
"They were in their 30s," he said, disgusted. "They were all over the court, and the ball came back with heat on it."
W is a powerful guy with a flat belly who lifts weights, hikes and plays golf as well as tennis. He used to think he was pretty agile, he said, but at 60 he had to admit that he can’t quite do the things he used to do. And despite his grin, you knew it bugged him.