Thursday, 24 September 2009

Sport Away From Home

Sadly today is the last day for going up to Roland Garros and having a knock up. The journalists tournament ends this weekend. My competitive participation ended long ago.

I did not go deep into this tournament. But then I never do. I must improve to have the chance and then it is the luck of the draw.

I have an individual coach called Rafael. He is from Mexico and he, with his heavily accented English, has helped me get the semblance of a backhand.

The problem is I feel my forehand isn't the reliable shot it used to be.

But this is where confidence kicks in. John F Murray, a sports psychologist I spoke to a few years ago for a programme, says in one of his podcasts that confidence comes from practising the motions and then it becomes knowledge.

His line is also that humans are born to be distracted - it helped having this awareness when sabre-toothed tigers were creeping around all those years ago.

Thus focus is not natural but it is something that is needed when on a field of play.


Sport At Home

I have decided to bolster my competitive drive. In an effort to restore flagging levels of testosterone, I'm upping the ante on a neighbour.

He lives above us on the second floor but because of the weird and wonderful acoustics of the building, he hears us. We hear everything from the flat on the second floor diagonal to us.

Ever since our arrival nine years ago, this man -let's call him Darth Neighbour - since I do love Star Wars -has been deeply unpleasant. He bangs on his floor when he thinks the children are making too much noise.

A few years back I'd just got in from the radio station and he came down to complain that there was too much noise. We had visitors and their children were running around with ours and making a din - according to him.

I went up to his flat later that evening and he did apologise for coming down when we had visitors.

Clearly he was ashamed that he had been exposed in front of other people complaining at 7.30pm on a Saturday evening.

It was then that I told him to go to the police if he felt there was a problem with us.

In my ever so untheatrical way I said we'd move out if he could prove to us that we were neighbours from hell.

He banged on his floor a couple of Wednesdays ago and after I'd left the house he knocked on the door to our flat. For some silly reason the eldest opened the door and he was there in his dressing gown complaining.

The missus was in the shower and the eldest told him to come back later.

All in all she shouldn't have opened the door.

I phoned up the managing agent of the building this morning. Spoke to a lady who said we ought to find some common ground.

I said how can I find common ground with someone who does not want to take the formal measures to show that he has obnoxious neighbours and who prefers to impose his own thresholds.

She said she would talk to him about it.

She'd better because the next time he tries banging on his floor, we will bang back.