Thursday, August 29, 2013

U.S. Open, Day "Whatever"

I know it's Thursday, but what day is it at the U.S. Open?

I guess it's day four, but it feels more like day two, at least for Mens Singles.

Throw in some moisture and drizzle, along with the existing scheduling, particularly the men's first round singles, and you have a snowball's chance in hell of naming the day. And, it can snowball, into week two, easily, whenever that may begin.

Okay, I know this is nothing so unique to the U.S. Open, just ask your club owner/manager or a tennis tournament director. It's this kind of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde thing that occurs. They love promoting tournaments and doing all the fun stuff for members and tournament guests (not to mention the revenue and potential new members, oh beer and wine sales too), but go ask some inanely stupid or obvious question when the weather throws a wrench into the equation.

Piercing eyes open and those little horns start poking through their scalp. It's understandable and you know so if you've played enough tournaments or managed one. Even Doris Day couldn't play the nice girl at times like these.

I was at the Open several years ago for the last four days of the tournament. It had rained much of the first week, but had cleared up and was beautiful for all of the second week, but even the last few days were still a juggle for the event managers, not to mention gate security. 

Leaving the confines of Billie Jean King National Tennis Center sometime in the afternoon was not a good idea. When we returned, we were re-routed to the ticket office and discovered most of my brethren tennis-fans-in-waiting were mentioning how last week's weather affected the terms of their tickets, on-and-on, yada yada.

I'm thinking, "I'm in the wrong line for the wrong reason, or no reason, and gained the attention of one of the staff and was able to get a manager to bypass that whole process. 

We had a wonderful time except for the moment I flicked a bee off my salad at the food court and nearly plastered a very nice woman, whom I had just met, with salad dressing and greens. Fortunately, she and her husband had their heads down eating as my thoughtless, perhaps socially rude and quick response to my bee dilemma, sent a small portion of my salad hurtling in several directions, past, but missing her face.  

Fortunately the Argentine constituency was there with their white and blue flags, just a section over from us in the stands. We had a blast with those guys.  

Oh, back to the U.S. Open, the weather and the facilities.

Install the retractable roof already! Obviously all the matches aren't played at Arthur Ashe (Louis Armstrong Stadium may get one as well.) and rain hampers the entire tournament, but TV coverage is king here and if you can't meet that schedule then you foul up the overall schedule and jeopardize revenues, the growth of the tournament and the tennis center. 

What country am I in?

Did Mayor Bloomberg ban retractable roofs on tennis stadiums also?

Can I get a super-sized soda please?

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