Tennis and Poetry: “If” recited by Federer and Nadal


Combining some of my favorite things i.e.  poetry, tennis, and tennis players.  This Wimbledon promo is simply a fortunate find.  Without further ado, I present Roger and Rafa reciting Rudyard Kipling’s “IF” which adorns the entrance to center court at Wimbledon. 

 

 

IF
by Rudyard Kipling

(‘Brother Square-Toes’—Rewards and Fairies)

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!
 

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A guys guide for gift giving and card signing for Valentines Day/ holidays.


This guide is for everyone, whether in a new relationship or an established one.

1.  Just met, you like her but it’s very new.

The gift:

Get something you know she likes from a shop you know she goes to.  You are not expected at this phase to buy “the perfect” gift, just one that shows you have at least been paying a little attention.   Also if you get it wrong she can return it and get something she likes better at her favorite shop.  You must get a card, something cute and funny will do.

The message:

A simple “Wishing you a happy fill in the holiday.

Signing the card:

I am (so) _______ (glad) we met, Bob

Looking forward to getting to know you better, Bob

Hugs and kisses, Bob

2.  New relationship 3-6 months, you are exclusive (you really like her)

The gift:

This gift should show some thought, because it is probably the first fill in the holiday you are spending together.  Again, pay attention to things she sees or mentions while you are shopping or ask one of her friends if you have access to them.  It may be an accessory item, a handbag, scarf or silver jewelry with a stone or charm she likes or has special meaning to her. She will really think it sweet if you remember something she mentioned or saw while you were together. If all else fails these are the gifts that most women would like this season:

– Princess perfume by Vera Wang, classy and you will like it too. – Pretty necklaces and bracelets  with semi-precious stones are totally in style and ones with a message that is personal to you/her is thoughtful. Sold in many mall shops.

– A spa/massage treatment is always a great gift, thoughtful and shows you care how hard she works. Popular spa’s are Bliss Spa, Sephora, Ulta offer spa treatments.    Look up local spa’s they usually run specials for Valentine’s Day.

Victoria’s Secret is a favorite but you can get more creative than that, right guys?

The message:
– Write at least a paragraph about how you feel about her, how she makes you feel or whatever you are feeling at the time.
– This is the time to be vulnerable but if you are not ready to say “Love” you don’t have to.

Signing the card:

You mean so much to me, Bob

So glad to be spending this fill in the holiday with you, Bob

Looking forward to more happy times with you, Bob

You are in my heart today and everyday, Bob

3.  6-12 months, you are either in love, falling in love or already declared your love.

The gift:
– A weekend getaway is ideal. Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels and Ski Resorts have last-minute deals, but there is nothing like pre-planning.
– Pamper her with a romantic dinner and run a tub or hot tub if you can arrange it. Bring flowers and candy too, it decorates the room and makes it special.
– Maybe a CD of music for a romantic evening. This is the perfect time to seal the deal guys; it’s fill in the holiday and BECAUSE it is corny and cheesy tell her you love her. Secretly we love cheesy and sappy during the holidays if we are in love.

– Jewelry is a safe bet here.

– Also you can bridge the “I am falling in love with you,” if you have not reached it just yet, (or if you are a wimp because nobody “thinks” they feel love for someone, this is one you KNOW.) but whatever, go at your own pace.

The message:
Spill it. You love this woman and you want to keep her indefinitely. A full paragraph with your heart racing with nervousness is what I am talking about. Trust me, the pay off will be worth it. If this is where you are with a woman showing it during the holidays is the only way to go. Even if she says she doesn’t care, DO NOT LISTEN. Just say it, most of us are not Shakespeare, women know, they don’t care how you say it, just that you do, and in this case write it too.

Signing the card:

All my love, Bob

Love you, Bob (playful)

I love you with all my heart, Bob (serious)

Oh I forgot, I wanted to tell you that I love you, Bob

I love you and want you to be my wife, Bob (Just in case)

Whatever you do this fill in the holiday with your new babe or your fiancé, have fun, laugh as much as you can, and let love in.  Try not to let the stress that always seems to accompany the big days get in the way of your enjoyment.  Remember, many fights around this time are due to circumstances beyond your control: i.e. planning, travelling, and just the anticipation that the holidays will work out perfect.  This is not the case and is quite rare, so be prepared for some hairy moments and always try to keep a sense of humor.

Please feel free to ask questions if there is something I missed and/or you have a unique situation that does not fit into these three headings.  I will be glad to help you get this fill in the holiday right.

Check out another take on  gift giving during our troubled economic times here.  A lot of great info to be found there.

Copyright ©2008 Veronica Romm

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We have a new president.


  • Barack Obama is the President of the United States.  America has taken a step toward maturity by electing the right candidate no matter what race.  Finally, a dream has been realized.  Many people are very happy and there is a sense of hope all over the world.  I join in that pride and re-post Dr, King’s dream as it comes true with the first African American President being sworn into office.  The world is watching this momentous occasion and I am so excited to be able to witness it.
  • President Barack Obama
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. I Have a Dream Speech

    Martin Luther King Jr. dedicated his life to a cause he felt was worth fighting, yet he never believed in violence. He was one of the greatest orators, but he was reluctant and could be shy. People oppressed saw in him the possibility. He gave them hope, for he was brave and determined. He led a march on Washington that changed the world, although he may not have seen it that way at the time. He is the voice of many today as he was the day he uttered the words “I have a dream.” And did he ever? His words are inspiring, poetic and proud. These passages are my personal favorites from that historic day.  Many resonate so much today.

    • I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
    • I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.” (Today that dream has become reality)
    • I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
    • This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with a new meaning, “My country, ’tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim’s pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring.”
    • And if America is to be a great nation this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania!Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.
    • And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

    That dream has come true Dr. King, and you must be very proud. Congratulations to the Obama family on this historical achievement!!


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  • In Memorium : JFK jr.


    In 1999, John F. Kennedy Jr., his wife, Carolyn, and her sister, Lauren Bessette, died when their single-engine plane, piloted by Kennedy, plunged into the Atlantic Ocean near Martha’s Vineyard, Mass.

    I remember hearing the first words of the missing plane and who was on it and knowing it was over.  I knew the circumstances, watched it unfold as did everyone because John John was royalty.  He was also this guy who was always downtown in Soho, on his bike, or roller blades. at bars and always a big flirt. 

    One summer night in 1998, out with friends celebrating   Max ‘s having passed the BAR exam.  We were down on West Broadway at Lucky Strike and Box a very Euro bar with great drinks.  JFK jr. came in, and went to the bar.   Notoriously he had not passed the BAR in his first attempt, and had real difficulty passing it later.  I always saw him  but I would never approach him, there was no reason to and he was always surrounded by women anyway.  So the joke/idea was that we should ask him to join us for a toast to Max for his achievement,  passing the BAR on his first try.   It was teasing and mean and I don’t do mean.  There was no way I would go through with it even though the bar was rather quiet that night and the fact was John John had looked over a few times and smiled his famous smile in our direction.  My friends kept telling me to go over, he was looking and I was being ridiculous, but I had no intention. 

    As he was leaving, he veered toward our table and said  “Hope you are having a good night,”  looking and locking eyes with me and then smiled the killer smile and walked out.  Well my “cool” friends all burst out into nervous laughter as I turned crimson red.   I was so happy they never went through with their childish dig. 

    A year later he was married and missing and everyone I knew was crushed ,shocked and in disbelief.  How could it be in real life, that this could happen to him?  I mean why?  The Kennedy curse just would not relent.  I remember my first thought  was, thank G-d Jackie O. had passed, and about Caroline and her utter despair over her baby brother.  The Bessette family losing two daughters in a national tragedy.  The search went on for over three days but I grieved knowing there was no surprise ending. 

    It was like Princess Diana all over again.  It devastated the country and the world.

     

     

    I am a sentimental person so I shared that silly story.  Rest in peace, John, Carolyn and Lauren you are not forgotten.

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