Monday, January 2, 2023. (Court Day #569)

Since my work was observing New Year’s Day today on Monday, I texted René last night asking if she’d be willing to play at 8 o’clock this morning at Skypark. Rain was expected later in the morning, with a 60% chance of rain by 10 a.m. René and I sent texts to number people to see if they’d be available. Most were busy, but Jason and Rob A. (the firefighter) said they’d play.

Overnight, the rain forecast moved earlier by about two hours. René was gung ho to play . . . I probably would have pulled the plug otherwise. Rob was questioning the timing but was still willing to give it a shot.

Skypark

I walked out onto the courts at Skypark at 8:01 a.m. and Rob and Jason were there stowing their gear at the far end. There was one court with a game going on it. Rob and Jason started warming up as I walked up. I joined them and a few minutes later, René arrived. She was bundled up. It was in the 40s when I left my house and we could see our breath on the court.

With rain coming anytime, we kept our warm-ups pretty short and started the game at about 8:40 a.m. As the morning went on, layers came off of the rest. I stuck with my shorts and a sweatshirt, though I considered going to just my T-shirt and shorts later, but I didn’t.

Games

Jason and I teamed up for the first game and the second game. We won twice.

For the third game, Jason and I split up, and Rob and I teamed up. Rob and I won handily 11-1. In the next game, Jason and René made a better showing but Rob and I still won 11-8.

After those two games, we changed up partners again, this time I was with René. She and I pulled off a win 11-9.

For our repeat game, Jason and Rob pulled out to a 3-0 lead when sparse rain drops appeared. René was starting to get uncomfortable and concerned about injury with the court getting more slippery. She turned to me and said, “I’m not going to hurt myself trying to get to shots.” We played a few more distracted rallies with Jason and Rob stacking on more points. I think it was 7-0 when we collectively decided it was time to call it at about 9:30 a.m.

ATP

One thing about René’s wide crosscourt dinks is sometimes it’ll afford the opponent an opportunity for an ‘around the post’ shot. Jason hit one such shot across from me. I thought it was going to land out, but it caught the line.

In a later game, again Jason was across from me again and this time went around the post to my right. Jason executed the shot very well. He hit it a mere foot or two off the ground and—even with me preparing, I figuring it was coming—I could only get my paddle on the ball but not get it back anywhere near back over the net.

And?

I felt I was playing well. It’s good when you are on the winning side for every game . . . not counting the rain distracted/interrupted game. If you do count that one, then I finished the morning 5-1.

It’s looking like a lot of rain off and on over the next couple of weeks—mostly on.

County Numbers

Oh, and we weren’t the only ones squeezing in some games. Dan Bliss was in a game with Jane (whom I hadn’t seen for many months) and a couple of women. Jackie was on another court playing another game. There were six courts going. That’s 24 people. That’s on top of those who went to organized club play at Brommer Park, at least another 40 people, I’d suspect. Maybe even some at Derby and Willowbrook. It could easily be 100 people playing pickleball at one time in our county.

René texted a bit later saying she’d gone to Mitchell Park in Palo Alto and it was dry enough for her to get some additional games up there.


Tuesday, January 3, 2022 (No Play)

An article from People Magazine yesterday lists celebrities who own sports teams. Number 6 is Tom Brady, listed as an owner of an “unnamed pickleball team”:
https://people.com/sports/celebrities-who-own-sports-teams/

Here’s the Brady announcement they refer to in the article (from October):
https://www.instagram.com/reel/CjngEXnAyeV/?igshid=NTdlMDg3MTY=


Wednesday, January 4, 2022 (No Play)

I made a trip to Precision Physical Therapy today in Scotts Valley to address my right knee. It’s been getting better, but it’ll still get a bit tweaked at times or sore at the end of a long playing session. I met with Matt, who moved my leg around and had me walk around barefoot and did an evaluation. He gave me some exercises to do and wants me to do a lower body class that’s held every week at their clinic next month.

He said my right quad was very tight leading into my knee.

Broadway

Well, not really. This is in Michigan. Actor Jeff Daniels wrote a comedic play about pickleball. It started at the end of September and ran through mid-December. It got extended a week due to its popularity. The actor learned of pickleball through his wife.

https://www.broadwayworld.com/michigan/article/World-Premiere-of-PICKLEBALL-by-Jeff-Daniels-to-Kick-Off-The-Purple-Rose-Theatre-Companys-32nd-Season-in-September-20220831

Here’s an article from The Pickler website:
https://thepickler.com/blogs/pickleball-blog/pickleball-play-a-smash-hit-with-theater-audience


Thursday, January 5, 2023 (No Play)

There’s a bit of drama in the pickleball world this week. The PPA Tour decided that they’d schedule a big tournament in conflict with the U.S. Open and require all their signed athletes participate in their own tournament and leave the venerable U.S. Open out in the cold. Of course, there are two sides to every story. Like the players knew they signed exclusivity causes in their contracts. And pickleball is growing so much, date conflicts are going to happen for tournaments. Though some argue that the billionaire owner of the PPA is trying to edge out other events and take over the pickleball universe. Growing pains.

Number of days on a court: 569
Number of total hours: 2,545

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