Just in Case…

…you were starting to worry that everyone in the world is rude and arrogant:


It is worthwhile listening to the whole speech. You will weep when he talks to his family.

My favorite line: “Have you ever got on your knees and prayed really hard for something?”

delpo and fed

I had two dreams this week.

One was to win the U.S. Open and the other one is to be like Roger.

One is done, but I need to improve a lot to be like you. You fought until the final point; you are a great champion.

–Juan Martin del Potro

Being classy never goes out of style.

100 Years of the Cathedral School for Boys

Andre Agassi, last to win U.S. Open in five-set Finals match
Andre Agassi, last to win U.S. Open in five-set Finals match
It has been a decade since a U.S.-Open Men’s Finals match went to five sets. Delpo just beat Federer in the fourth-set tiebreaker. The tall man is making Federer Federer. Very exciting…


My father, my brother, and I attended St. Albans School during some formative years of our lives. The school opened 100 years ago this fall.

I was pretty miserable at the time, but I thank God for my years at St. Albans.

lane johnstonI had more homework at St. Albans than I ever had in college or graduate school. The boys at the National Cathedral school were mean to each other, cruel. The cross-country coach made us run until we threw up.

But I came to understand four crucial things while I was a St.-Albans boy:

1. Being a gentleman is always its own reward.

2. The Church is as inevitable as the sun and/or moon.

3. Liberal Protestantism could not account for the truth of #1 and #2, so the discerning man looked to the Pope for clear teaching.

4. If you can write a clear sentence, you can make an impact in this world.

I wouldn’t be who I am without these precepts firmly entrenched in my mind. Therefore, I feel it is my duty to pray to God: “Vouchsafe thy blessing, we beseech Thee, O Lord, upon the School and upon all other works undertaken in thy fear and for thy glory,” as the St. Albans school prayer has it.

…More to come on Delpo and Roger…


Here is footage of the now-infamous episode:

Serena was penalized justly (and later fined). But let’s not judge anyone. In the heat of the moment, we can say things we regret.

The story does have a moral: If you are an athlete, never mouth-off at officials.

Leave it to somone else to complain. Let the fans boo. Let your coach console you later.

I remember losing a high-school basketball game that we should have won. After the game, the coach was not mad at us.

peanut_singleI was amazed. He loved to yell at us. He usually told us we should use rubber-bands and peanut shells for jockstraps. But this time he said, “You guys got a lot of bad calls.”

Never occurred to me during the game.

Why second guess officials? If you overcome bad officiating and win anyway, you are a hero. If you lose gracefully in the face of bad officiating, you are noble. But any player who yells at a referee looks like a spoiled child.

Forgive me for saying this…


jason-campbell…but, of all the sports action in greater NYC this weekend, I am actually more fired up for tennis than I am for the Redskins’ season opener.

(Click here for my predictions about opening the season against the Giants last year. I predict a similar outcome tomorrow.)

I know that American men are supposed to scoff at tennis and live and breathe football. Football is the more ‘manly’ game.


televisionFirst of all, I take Serena over Jason Campbell any day.

Secondly, these intriguing questions are swirling in the clouds over Queens:

Will Nadal rally and hobble his way to victory?

Will Federer Federer?

OR: Will Delpo carry the tall-man banner into the tennis stratosphere?

…There are not enough hours in the day to take in all the excitement, my friends.

From His celestial perch, high above the New York metropolitan area, the good Lord will watch all the tennis in Queens and all the football in north Jersey simultaneously.

The rest of us will have to be content with channel-flipping.


Labor of Love

football diagramLet’s say you are a defensive linebacker. Let’s say the other team just scored a touchdown. Then they try a two-point conversion.

Let’s say you intercept a pass on their conversion attempt. You run the ball back to the OTHER end-zone.

How many points does your team get?

Two points, chief. Two points.

Did you know that? I have been a football fan all my life, and I did not know it until yesterday.

john isner
John Isner

Speaking of college football, Florida beat Charleston Southern 62-3.

Impressive victory. But the Gators did not cover the spread, which was 63 points.

Yesterday was quite a day.

I was sorry to see Andy Roddick knocked out of the U.S. Open so quickly. On the other hand, we tall guys have to stick together. (John Isner is 6′ 9″.)

…It’s time for some new Bests.

The overwhelming winner of the First-Anniversary poll was: “This blog is best enjoyed with a cold one.”

…Happy Labor Day! The “labor of love” is your patient indulgence of this tedious blog, written by one of the worst priests ever ordained.

…Here is a mysterious saying of Christ:

Continue reading “Labor of Love”

No Clashes of the Titans, but satisfying nonetheless

It is rather annoying to have to contend with the fact that ESPN radio and the sports bars of the world do not consider tennis to be a real sport.  I managed with some finagling to catch a lot of the US Open championship matches anyway.  (This evening I was handed the remote to manipulate myself by my scattered waitress.  It did give me a feeling of power, but then I couldn’t get the dagblame thing to work.  The manager had to step in.  She promptly assured me that there was no tennis on CBS, only the evening news.  ‘It’s not on my list.’  ‘Please try it anyway,’ I begged.  She graciously indulged me.)

It was fun to see Murray knock off the pretty boy yesterday (the hearthrob Raffy).  Then the lovely Serena took care of the lovely Jankovic.  And today the prettier boy made quick work of his historic second fifth-in-a-row Grand Slam title.  It would have been nice to see Nadal and Federer square off again, but I am happy that Roger is the champ.  Tennis is such a nice escape from even thinking about the Redskins.