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40 Quick Hits from this year's US Open

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(sorry, but I just couldn't stretch it to 50. You need three days to do that. Anyway, here's some quick hits and impressions from my trip to the Open):

1. Virginia Ruano Pascual might very well have the finest body I have ever seen on a woman 34 or older. And she puts most 24 year olds to shame as well.

2. Robby Ginepri just doesn’t seem to want it bad enough

3. The first player I spotted this year was Shahar Pe’er. Second was Tommy Haas. No, it was not at the airport.

4. Francesca Schiavone has a rather unique grunt that is part of her service motion. To be honest, it sounds like she is dropping the “F”-Bomb on every first serve.

5. I was a believer in Juan Martin Del Potro. Having seen a match, I am also now a fan.

6. I’m still in shock about how muscular and ripped Vera Zvonareva is. Her stomach is carved up like a Thanksgiving turkey. Now that men get to play in sleeveless shirts, they should consider letting women play in sports bras – Vera would have more fans than any other Russian woman.

7. Ivo Karlovic looks smaller in person.

8. Someone needs to give Victoria Azarenka an attitude adjustment. She’s a potentially great player with a pissy outlook on things. And if she doesn’t cheer up soon, she’s not going to realize her potential.

9. Sadly, Anabel Medina Garrigues went with a visor instead of undergarments when we saw her doubles match, so no one wins this years 5 TAT Dollars. We’ll just let it roll over to Indian Wells.

10. They say the camera adds ten pounds, but in David Nalbanidan’s case, I think it subtracts 20.

11. One more about Franny S. – she’s a true delight to observe during a match. Her hand gestures, her eyes, her body language all convey a sense of her having the time of her life in her given profession.

12. Gilles Simon – hurry back to the States. We loved seeing you. And we’ll let out a loud TAT cheer for you if you play on an outer court at IW in 2009.

13. I didn’t get to see Mardy Fish in person, but I owe him a debt of gratitude for seeing that his match ended late enough to keep about 20,000 fans off the LIRR at 12:07 a.m. Sunday morning.

14. Somebody needs to teach Brooklyn Decker the proper way to clap her hands.

15. I could watch Agnieszka Radwanska play for hours and hours. I could also slap that 50 mph 2nd serve straight to Fire Island if I was on the receiving end of it. Someone please get her Pat Etcheberry’s number.

16. You know who is real fun to watch live? Marin Cilic. Even though I was rooting for Ginepri, I found a lot to enjoy in Cilic’s game.

17. Biggest disappointment to watch goes to Dominika Cibulkova. When Agnieszka is overpowering you, it’s time to go back to the drawing board.

18. I never realized that Patty Schnyder was so petite. And for some reason, pink just isn’t a color she should wear.

19. Gael Monfils – you can win a match that I am watching any day. How about teaching a few other players that kind of on-court joy you exhibit so naturally.

20. Scotty and I made a side trip Thursday night to see “Legally Blonde: The Musical”. Omigod, you guys, it’s the best!

21. I don’t think even the Men’s Fitness Photoshop specialist could help Marion Bartoli.

22. You know how some people look so much better in person than they do in pictures? In Flavia Pennetta’s case, it’s the other way around.

23. There were more people at Serena Williams’s practice session on Friday than there were at almost all the outer court matches. Combined.

24. I think Murphy Jensen makes it a point to stroll the grounds of tournaments, hoping that people will walk up to him and say “You’re Murphy Jensen, aren’t you?”

25. You know one thing that’s cool about TAT? When you aren’t at your favorite player’s match, other TATers go and take lots of pictures of him for you!

26. I think I’ll always remember where I was the last time Lindsay Davenport played professional tennis.

27. Amelie Mauresmo throws one mean tennis ball. We were well up in the stands at Armstrong following her 3rd round match, and her autographed ball fell only two rows short of us. (And she kicked her third ball, soccer style, deep into the stands as well).

28. If you dropped a penny from the top of the Empire State Building, it wouldn’t fall as fast as David Ferrer’s ranking.

29. Our fellow TATer Kayce wins the award for most loyal fan. Andy and Jamie Murray are lucky to have her on their side.

30. Jelena, Jelena, Jelena. I still love ya, ya doofus. You’re the only player that could get me to sit through a match on Ashe. You’re also one of the only players with enough personality to make the cavern feel nearly intimate. Now would you please win this thing and be a worthy #1.

31. I only was able to get my picture with one player this time around, but it was with future #1 Caroline Wozniacki. And yes, she is as attractive as her game.

32. I would be afraid to give Anna Lena Groenefeld any crap. Dang, she looks like she could crush you with one hand. Having said that, welcome back, ALG. Glad to see you have a most excellent run, and here’s hoping you can keep it up.

33. I suspect, in ten years time, someone will applaud the TATer who remembers that, once, many many years ago, Julie Coin beat two top 50 players before never being heard of again.

34. Every time I see Nadia Petrova in person, I think more highly of her.

35. Ernests Gulbis is a year away from greatness.

36. How to wear red: Jie Zheng. How not to wear red: Serena Williams.

37. They serve a mean iced coffee at the US Open.

38. If you’re planning to go to the Open, make time to enjoy one match by those fountains that you always see during USA’s coverage. There is a huge screen TV hanging right there, and it seems that whatever match it is that I’ve seen there always goes deep into the final set and produces an upset. This year it was Kei Nishikori. Oh, and Thomas Blake just stands around there waiting for people to ask for his autograph.

39. Saw Jill Craybas passing by as we ate lunch on Friday. If she had been 10 feet closer, I would have apologized for all the laughs we have had at her expense. Everyone says she is about as sweet a person as there is on the Tour.

40. Tailgate 2008 was another huge success. Was great meeting the Martinis (thank you so much for the Moose Droppings!), Suliso, Kayce (like I said, I hope the Murrays appreciate having such a great fan), LBK, Bea and Garp6, and getting caught up with Aedra (who rocks!), Beau, MMMM8 (I promise to work on my pronunciations for next year), Manolo (sorry we didn’t get to catch up with our mutual friend Aravane this time around), Jack, JuJu and JuJu Jr., Nelslus and Tenor, Dry (bro!) and Dolphins, Scotty (thanks TAT for allowing me to meet such a great friend!), and GV, Queen of the Tailgate (next year, I’m bringing you a crown and a sash).

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  1. MeganFernandez's Avatar
    Re: Franny.... Will someone of the YouTube generation please cobble together a sound clip of various player grunts, or just of linesmen of the world butchering the words "out" and "fault"? Google Rachael Ray's 2-minute string of orgasmic "Mmmms" for inspiration (or because you know you want to).

    Thank you.
    Updated 09-04-2008 at 01:24 PM by MeganFernandez
  2. dryrunguy's Avatar
    Absolutely awesome, Moose!
  3. Scotty's Avatar
    it's like I was there all over again!
  4. GVGirl's Avatar
    Whoo hoo Moose!

    I always love your blogs!

    Let's begin the tailgate countdowns for IW, Miami and the US O 2009!
  5. mmmm8's Avatar

    Hmm... I thought Flavia was as pretty as she looks in photos.
  6. mrjiggyfly2's Avatar
    Outstanding Moose!!!!!!!!
  7. Danielle's Avatar
    Great stuff Moose.


    Bring on Indian Wells!!
  8. rabbit's Avatar
    Thanks, Moose! Wish I was there
  9. kayce's Avatar
    lol, great blog Moose! It was great meeting you!
  10. bea26's Avatar
    #22 - ouch!
  11. evil_juju's Avatar
    Once again it was great. It was fun catching up and meeting new people! I wish it was still going on... Till next year!
    Updated 09-08-2008 at 05:16 AM by evil_juju