June 8, 2019

June 8, 2019


The Suncoast Tennis League is a huge conglomeration of people living in Sarasota and Manatee counties, Florida. From October to March each year 1,900 players compete in doubles. There are 32 clubs officially signed up for competition. The league began in 1980 when John McEnroe and Bjorn Borg were both at the height of their powers. Once a week team captains are responsible for telling the public the results of every match played. Most captains send out newsletters. But only one captain (Jon Dietz, President of the Paradise Duffers Golf Association and captain of the University Park Red tennis team, uses the newsletter as an opportunity to tell wild outlandish tales. Sure, the scores are accurately tabulated. But beyond that, what one reads is as likely to involve aliens as often as carbon-based lifeforms (CBLF). What you will be reading from now until the league starts up again are selected archived newsletters that have tickled the funnybones of lots of people.  The stories may be dated, but then so was every joke Henny Youngman ever told over a sixty year career. Enjoy. - Jon

Dateline june 8, 2019 (Blast from the past )

This is Edward R. Murrow, reporting from the placid greenery of Village Walk in Sarasota County, Florida. The University Park Red Team (Jon Dietz, Gregg Anderson, Tom Joerres, Ted Goldberg, Nat Colletta and Mike Ritter) played with panache and determination but two out of three courts went into the loss column. The Village People belied their wimpy moniker and proved to be formidable opponents. On Court One radar guns recorded tennis balls at speeds off the charts for amateurs. It was smash-bam tennis but Dietz and Anderson fell 6-4, 6-4 to opponents Bill Nieman and Steve Martin. On Court Two Nat Colletta and Mike Ritter battled Clay Bulan and Ronald Coussens. Colletta –Ritter lost the first set 4-6, won the second set 6-4, and then lost the third by (surprise!) 6-4. This match was noticeable for its running commentary between the competitors. The honor of University Park was upheld on Court Three by Ted Goldberg and Tom Joerres. They won in a tie breaker against Russell Johnson and Joe Rosenthal (7-5, 6-3, 10-6). Afterwards Colletta and Anderson split the scene in order to take care of pressing matters of state. Joerres, Goldberg, and Ritter retired to a small nearby café where they heard team Captain Jon Dietz give a rousing call for revenge. Dietz said ‘remember Henry V at Agincourt, who said ‘Once more, let’s go to the beach…’ (I might not have nailed that quote exactly owing to six glasses of Grey Goose  the night before).