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Arched Windows and the Backbone of Humanity

During a vacation I took a number of years ago, I found myself bored and restless from too much relaxation and decided to get a bit of exercise. I phoned the concierge to inquire about the availability of a tennis partner, and being a macho male with too much pent-up energy, requested a match with the resident tennis pro.
            Naturally, the concierge asked the level of my expertise. I explained that I had played competitive tennis for many years and that I preferred to play against someone who would give me a really good game. The concierge scheduled court time and told me when I would be meeting my opponent.
            “She will bring all of the equipment, including balls,” he said. “There’s no need for you to carry anything to the court.”
            “She?” I objected. “What do you mean ‘she’? I’ve played tennis consistently almost every day since college. Why would I want to compete against a woman?”
            The concierge assured me that this particular woman would give me a good match. She had been on the WTA Tour (the worldwide professional tennis tour for women). “Give her a chance” he suggested. “I think you’ll be surprised.”
            Reluctantly, I agreed, and an hour later I showed up at the court to meet the pro. “Surprised” didn’t come close. I’m six feet tall, but I had to look up when I said, “Hello, nice to meet you.”
            Two hours later, back in my room, after a long hot-cold-hot shower, I called the concierge again and asked for room service. “Send me some Advil and a bottle of Hennessy XO, please.”


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