Tag Archives: tennis

Open yourself up and get out there

You’ve got to be open to trying new things, lots of new things. You start getting complacent in life, doing the same old stuff every day, pretty soon everything’s boring, you’re sitting at your computer for four hour stretches at a time, the days are blending into the nights and you can’t remember off the top of your head what day of the week it is, what time you have to start getting ready for work, you’re getting all of these text messages from your boss like, “Are you coming in? You’re supposed to be here right now. Where are you?”


And so yes, text him back, tell him that you got mugged on the way to work or something like that, like they stole your wallet, luckily not your cell phone, because … OK, yeah, don’t text, just show up at work, maybe look a little purposefully disheveled, and tell him that the mugger stole your cell phone too.

No, you really can’t use a trick like this more than once a year. And so while you’re in the bathroom splashing some cold water on your face, staring at a reflection in the mirror that’s looking less familiar every day, telling yourself, all right man, just really, really make an effort to show up to work on time, just really make it a point not to be late again, also, at the same time, think about getting involved in some new activities. You’ve got to get out there and try some new things.

Lots of things. Like, I don’t know. Why don’t you take a cooking class? That could be fun, right? You can learn all sorts of different ways to prepare food. And then when you wake up in the morning, you can start thinking about going to the store, and buying all of those fresh ingredients. Do you remember what that okra looked like? Will they have okra at the regular grocery store? Actually, you probably should have gotten up a little earlier. You can’t expect to go to the grocery store, cook a whole meal, and still be on time for work. Just go to Subway, just grab a sandwich, just remember you’ve really got to be in on time today.

But don’t stop thinking about all of those new activities you’re going to get involved in. Life is what you make of it, right? Right. What about hockey? You used to play hockey in high school, right? Well, there you go, get involved. Or don’t get involved, I didn’t realize how expensive ice time was. And yeah, I didn’t really think about the cost of buying all new equipment. You sure you won’t be able to find any of your old stuff at home? No, I guess I don’t have a lot of my old high school stuff either.

What about tennis though? That can’t be as expensive as hockey. Just go on craigslist and find an old racket, nothing too old, but come, you’ve got to be able to find something decent online. Do you know how many people are constantly taking up new activities? I guarantee you that there’s got to be at least ten people within a five block radius that have made a commitment to get involved in a new activity, probably tennis. They buy brand new rackets, they sign up for a free intro lesson at the tennis center, and then it’s like ten months later and that racket hasn’t been taken out the case at all, it’s practically brand new still, just waiting to be plucked for a totally lowball offer on craigslist.

Look, I’m not saying it has to be tennis. It could be anything. Carpentry. Guitar lessons. Running. Gardening. Is anything sounding cool here? Anything jumping out at you? Painting. Bird watching. I don’t know man, you just keep shaking your head no, it’s like, what do you want to do? Huh? Because for me anyway, it’s like, I won’t really get into something until I at least give it a shot. And so what if you don’t like it after a while? Try something else.

You want to play video games all day? Well, I mean I guess that’s something. You could play online, right? You could talk with some of the other gamers. That’s an activity. Yeah. Making popcorn, sure, that’s something else. Think about people living three, four hundred years ago. I doubt they made popcorn. And if they did, they definitely weren’t making it in a bag in the microwave. No man, just count your blessings, don’t forget to look on the bright side. Is this helping? Are you feeling a little better? Just, after you’re done with that next level, let’s go for a walk, OK? Or tomorrow, sure, just, you let me know when you’re ready to get out there, OK? The world is your oyster, OK! Well, I was just speaking figuratively, there aren’t any oysters, not really. But if you’ve never had an oyster, you should definitely at least try it. Yeah it’s got a really weird texture, but I’m telling you, you get used to that briny taste, you start to really like it man, or you can just add some lemon juice and Tabasco until it doesn’t seem so weird just slurping it out of the shell like that.

I figure I’m about halfway to knowing how to do everything

I know I often talk and act like I’ve got everything figured out, but there’s so much that I don’t know how to do. I’m almost thirty, so assuming that I’ll probably live for another ninety years or so, if I calculate all of the things that I know how to do now, and how much time it’ll take me to learn everything else, then, yeah, I think I can still get it all done before I die. Obviously I wasted a lot of time when I was a little kid, learning how to talk, how to read, how to spend five years straight playing Super Nintendo. Everybody has to learn how to do the basics. I just wish it didn’t take so long. Two years to figure out how to get potty trained? That seems a little long.

But computers. I know how to use basically every computer. As long as the language is in English. You guys ever have one of those friends that takes your cell phone when you’re not looking, changes the language to Cyrillic, changes all the settings, makes the default brightness at the very dimmest, so you can’t see anything, turns it on mute, and then takes out the SIM card? Yeah, I’m not talking about those types of computers. And come on, that was a funny joke. They fixed it for you at the cell phone store, right? Well sorry you don’t know Cyrillic.

I don’t know Cyrillic. That’s another thing that I’ll have to learn. That and every other language. OK, maybe I’ll need to start living a little longer. Maybe I can just write off the language requirement. I mean, nobody knows every language.

Wait, wasn’t I talking about computers? I don’t know how to do any computer programming. But isn’t that just another type of language? Yeah, I don’t need to know programming. I figure once I learn business, once all of my business skills are in order, I’ll be able to pay a bunch of programmers to program anything I want.

Tennis. I’ve never even played tennis. I’m pretty good at Ping-Pong. That’s close enough. I was about to say that I’ve never even so much as picked up a tennis racket, but that’s not true. I think I was at a sporting goods store one time and I started playing around with a tennis racket on display, taking a tennis ball and bouncing it up and down like … what do you call those paddles with the string attached to the ball? And you’re supposed to bounce it up and down over and over again? Is it paddle ball? Those things are so lame. Just a total waste of the earth’s resources, making something so dumb and cheap. But yeah, I guess I really don’t know how to use those either. The sporting goods tennis racket story didn’t end well, by the way. It was a huge mess.

Now that I’m writing it all out, maybe I’m biting off a little more than I can chew here. I’m starting to panic. And the panic is only making me realize that I haven’t even begun to master any of those relaxation techniques I’ve read about online. Meditation? Medication? I’d go for either one right now. Just got to take deep breaths, drink a glass of water. But my back molars are so sensitive. I don’t remember eating ice cream and drinking cold water being such a chore. I always hear about old people and when their teeth fall out and they get dentures, how all of the sudden they love ice cream and cold water again because they’ve lost that dental sensitivity. And they come into restaurants by the dozens, immediately complaining about how it’s too cold in here, but then alternately complaining that the water isn’t cold enough, to bring them an extra glass of ice on the side.

But that doesn’t make any sense because I have great teeth. Some of the best. No braces. Barely any cavities. I say barely because I’m not counting the cavities I got when I was a little kid. Little kids are always too busy being defiant and not brushing their teeth and eating way too much candy. At least I was. I never learned how to do dental work. But do I have time to go to dental school? I’d have to fail out of medical school first. Ba-dum, ching!

Jokes. Check. Typing. Check. Internet. Check. Man, maybe I’m not going to be able to master everything. Should I just give up? Should I just try to focus on what I’m already good at? This has been a real eye-opener, this reflection, this self-assessment. Wait a second. Did I just learn and then master self-assessment? I think I did. There’s still hope. Maybe it’s not mastering everything, maybe it’s all about half-assing everything, learning just enough of everything there is to learn, the bare minimum spread out across an entire lifetime. I actually think I’m over halfway there. Maybe I won’t need ninety years after all. I mean, if I’m alive, that’ll be great. Bonus time to sit here and rub it in to everybody else how much I know, about life, about everything, literally every subject imaginable.