Dragi Novak

23 Jul


I’m a big fan of yours who’s writing to you to ask for your help.  I know you got a lot on your mind with the Olympics coming up but I need this favor from you.  I’ve been having a rough summer.  After Monte Carlo and Garros I fell into a deep funk.  After Wimbledon I got seriously depressed, couldn’t get out of bed, and started drinking heavily; my friends put me on unofficial suicide watch.

So, here’s some suggestions for how you can help me out.

One: we all know you’re a good Orthodox kid.  You sure perform it enough (“performative” is why we love you), ripping your shirt off with that big monk’s crucifix you got on and crossing yourself and always wearing your prayer rope (“komboshoini” in Greek – I don’t know how you say it in Serbian) at every match.  Good.  Keep the faith.  I didn’t know till recently that the Patriarch had made you a member of the Order of St. Sava.  Congratulations.  I’m sure he’ll be there by your side helping you out – not the Patriarch, I mean.  St. Sava.

Two: ignore that schmuck from the The New Yorker who wrote that lame commentary before Wimbledon.  Don’t let any malicious malaka scare you about your game or your knees.  Your knees are of tempered katana steel and you’re not scared of anything anyway.  Plus, the point of “Rooting for Failure” was that Federer could only win if your own game somehow failed you, which only implies that you’re the superior player.

The Catalan is protecting himself from whatever injury he’s afraid of by staying home, but you can be sure that not being in London is making him eat his guts out.  Good.  Forget about him anyway and, generally, wipe all seed lists out of your mind; they don’t mean shit.  It’s gonna be you and Roger again in the end and he’s the worthiest opponent anyway, which should only get any good Serb’s blood flowing faster.  Focus on that.

Then, you sure this non-gluten diet is a good idea?  A lot of times we mistake coincidence for cause and result and maybe 2011 was a stellar year for you for reasons that have nothing to do with the new diet.  Wheat does have nutritive properties that other carb sources don’t and gauging the emotional and physical effects of sugars and their metabolization is tricky business.  You’ve been looking all skin and muscle lately; you’re obviously in kick-ass aerobic shape and I was just thinking that maybe that frame can afford to carry a little bit more fat on it, as a fuel reserve and as a shock absorber too.  I’m sure you have armies of nutritionists around you and I’m just a lay person, but I was just thinking…

Finally…chill brother.  Please.  Chill.  One bad set or one bad game doesn’t mean anything.  Don’t be the crazy, self-destructive Serb who flies into a rage and starts smashing rackets and loses it and shoots his concentration into shards.  Be the tough, single-minded, obsessive Serb, who grits his teeth and summons every molecule of strength and inat that he’s got in his body and soul and wins!  Please.  Do it for me.  Do it for your fans.


I’m not gonna wish you luck cause I only wish luck to those who need it.  Knock them out in London and then come here and kick ass in Flushing too.  Win.

A Greek fan.


Comment: nikobakos@gmail.com

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