Dear Murray,My friends say there is no Captain Clause. But I know if I read it in the blog it must be true. So please tell me the truth. Is there really a Captain Clause?
Dear Virginia,As the original version said, “your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age.” Evidently, some things haven’t changed since 1897. But don’t worry gentle readers, there really is a Captain Clause.
He captains multiple teams but has time for each of his players, not just his stars. He makes sure everyone gets equal playing time and no one gets bumped up so they can keep playing with their friends. In his league, every team makes the playoffs and everyone actually plays in the playoffs. Sectionals and Nationals participants are based on who went last and everyone gets a turn. Anyone can play singles or doubles. And all your mixed partners are good looking.
Everyone plays for fun and the scores don’t actually count, so no one manages or tanks. Since scores don’t count and Nationals is decided by whose turn it is, not who wins, it doesn’t matter what level you play – only that you have fun. Every season everyone gets the same North Pole Tennis Association gift, sectionals T shirt and Nationals hat/towel combo. The NPTA has very few rules and no forms to fill out. Everyone is invited to the year-end party for the champions and it’s always open bar.
How does he do it? How does he create so much happiness? It’s not just the spirit of the NPTA, Captain Clause knows who’s been naughty and who’s been nice. When you backstab your fellow team mates in hopes of more playing time, when you lobby to play line 3 with the best player on the team, when you get on a team because you promised to bring a 20 year old super champ with you – and you don’t, when you get on the blog and complain about matches you know nothing about, when you really deep down wish everyone would get bumped up so you could finally win something, when you’re basically a jerk because things just don’t seem to go your way, well, Captain Clause knows.
The season has just started – it’s not too late. Maybe there’s still time for Captain Clause to bring you what you really want for this season: a monster kick serve that jumps like a super ball, crisp volleys that cut through the court like a hot knife through warm butter, or a blistering service return that never fails in the clutch. Maybe even a well-disguised inside-out backhand if you’ve been really nice.
That’s a lot to ask for but it’s not too late. Of course, as this blog has proved time and time again, is it really any fun to be as nice as that would require? All the courts in the NPTA are indoor and climate controlled but come on, would we really enjoy all that equality? And what would there be to bitch about? Heck, they probably outlaw lobs so you don’t offend the elves. And I’m sure they don’t have a blog.
So sit back, grab your key board, and enjoy. If Captain Clause plays everyone we won’t see him in the playoffs anyway.