Frontlines of the Nondigital – Surface

You’ll never play the same game twice: that was how my mom sold me on trying Bridge. It might have been the same line when my dad talked me into Chess. And come to think of it, pretty much any great game of deep strategy shares this quality, digital or not. Yet Chess only maintains this quality through the game play of your opponent. Same with Bridge, but there it also depends on the cards you’re dealt. Now consider games and sports where you will never play the same game twice and the reason behind this is the altering of the context of the game. I’m talking playing surfaces, environments, and general pregame shenanigans.

I’m watching a Russian by the name of Federer, first name Roger, come from behind to win the first set of a tennis matches in the semifinals of the French Open. I love European championship tennis for two reasons: it’s really good, and it’s on live television in the morning. I’m talking Wimbledon along with this tourney, and watching Federer — perhaps the most dominating tennis player ever — can be a religious experience. Don’t take it from me, take it from David Foster Wallace. But since an article about Federer has already been done, I’ll write one about the second coolest thing in tennis: the surfaces.