When Corporate won't Cooperate
First and foremost, let’s address the issue of the vast number of empty corporate seats at most matches. Sure you people have paid for it or slept with your boss for it so it’s yours to do with it what you will, so technically you can leave it unattended. But that’s like you’ve broken up with your supermodel girlfriend who has a thing for tall guys of Eastern European background but you still won’t let me ask her out because you might be interested in her again later. Realistically, the corporate and members area shouldn’t even be ticketed, it should be filled purely on the basis of “Who called ‘SHOTGUN!’”. If that system was implemented, you would never see a late arrival to the tennis ever again or an empty seat on the baseline. Knowing these morons, they probably have a hot wife that sleeps in a separate bed, a pool they don’t swim in and a Ferrari they never drive. Perhaps what ticks us off the most about these empty seats is that no one is allowed to shift down and fill them. It takes a special kind of douchebag to leave a seat that good empty. Why have it if you can’t use it!? It’s like Stephen Hawking having a private basketball court or Kim Kardashian owning her own private library.
No Deal on Nadal
Having to listen to girls talk about how beautiful Rafael Nadal is. That's the thing about Australia being so far away from Europe and the power of celebrity – it means a language with an in-built speech impediment is looked at as exotic and a receding hairline and bald spot are overlooked. He's one career-ending knee injury away from having to set-up a Spanish ‘E-harmony’ account – ‘Si-harmonia’. Before you dream of spending the rest of your life with Nadal ladies, imagine the reality of the situation; he has bad knees and his hands blister easily so getting him to do any of the work around the house is almost impossible, he sweats profusely so he’s always doing a load of washing and his English is horrible so every time he calls you for something, you end-up hanging up thinking it’s a call centre operator.
Those Living Aboard the "Fed-Express"
The Great Australian Plight
The Baseline Camera
The camera angle enjoyed solely by people with a calf muscle fetish and penchant for butt sweat or for when you want to have no concept of where the ball is or where it’s going at any time whatsoever. It’s the camera angle for when you want the full experience of being an oompa loompa with courtside seats to the badminton. All the joy of watching someone up close as they’re sweating profusely combined with the visual benefits of being stuck behind someone taller than you anywhere but in a game of dodgeball. It makes us feel like a mute linesperson and it’s got to boot.
Cross-court Tension meets Cross-promotion
Because what’s more perfect during the tension of a break point in a semi-final than being reminded of the fact that the new season of ‘Better Homes and Gardens’ and ‘My Kitchen Rules’ is starting soon. Now not only am I stressed out about the fact that Djokovic might lose this match, but I’m also reminded that I’m a sub-standard cook and what a crappy state my kitchen and lounge room are in.
The Price is Wrong
The 'Super Fan'
How do you Solve a Problem like Arena?
Having to explain to people that it’s called ‘Margaret Court Arena’ and not just ‘Margaret Court’. Her name is ‘Margaret Court’ so I understand the confusion that her surname is the same as the place named after her but let’s get it right and look past it. I feel for you Margaret Court, in the same way I feel for Tina Arena.
Two Weekends at Bernie's
Australians seem to love 'Big Brother' so can’t we combine that into the Australian Open and give punters the option of voting out at least one player before the tournament even starts? This is where Bernard Tomic comes in. From his off-court antics to his complaints about scheduling, it’s pretty clear that he’s the Justin Bieber of Australian tennis. On behalf of all of us Bernie, you’ve fared better than 99% of people going to the tournament – you’ve gotten a seat right on court, you’ve been paid to attend even though you’ll in all likelihood leave the tournament early and you’ve got a free lift to and from the stadium. When you have to pay $170 admission to sit so far up in Rod Laver Arena that you actually have to duck when Jetstar’s evening Avalon-bound flight is preparing to land, plus pay for a return V-line train ticket that has you praying your match doesn’t go past 11:30 pm so you can race to catch the midnight service to Geelong, then come cry me a Yarra River Bernie.
The Good, the Bad & the Ana
So as the ball kids go back to their ball families, the linespeople go back to their day-to-day lines and the players store their racquet bags and free Australian Open towels back in their closets, we say 'game-set-match' to another big Australian Open. For all these minor inconveniences and quirks, we love it like a fit kid loves gluten-free cake and we look forward to welcoming the "unhappy couples" back again for another exciting couple of weeks next January.
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