Tuesday, June 27, 2017

You Cannot Be Serious!

Yes, they can be serious.

During his tennis career, McEnroe became known for outbursts on the court when he thought umpires had missed a call. In one classic exchange, he yelled at an official, "You cannot be serious! That ball was on the line!"

Garcia-Navarro: We're talking about male players but there is of course wonderful female players. Let's talk about Serena Williams. You say she is the best female player in the world in the book.

McEnroe: Best female player ever — no question.

Garcia-Navarro: Some wouldn't qualify it, some would say she's the best player in the world. Why qualify it?

McEnroe: Oh! Uh, she's not, you mean, the best player in the world, period?

Garcia-Navarro: Yeah, the best tennis player in the world. You know, why say female player?

McEnroe: Well because if she was in, if she played the men's circuit she'd be like 700 in the world.

Garcia-Navarro: You think so?

McEnroe: Yeah. That doesn't mean I don't think Serena is an incredible player. I do…

Do you see the problem?  Of course, you do not if you put on your rational thinking cap.  But put on your “everything is about race and gender and white privilege; context is irrelevant” cap, and the problem will jump out at you in spades.

Let’s revisit:

McEnroe: Oh! Uh, she's not, you mean, the best player in the world, period?

Garcia-Navarro: Yeah, the best tennis player in the world. You know, why say female player?

Garcia-Navarro clarified: “…the best tennis player in the world.”  Period!

Serena Williams responded via two tweets:

Dear John, I adore and respect you but please please keep me out of your statements that are not factually based.

I guess one could make an argument about “700”; is this the issue?  Because I cannot imagine anyone who knows anything about tennis would say that Serena Williams is the best player in the world.  Better that Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, or Roger Federer?

No one would say this, not even Serena Williams.

I've never played anyone ranked 'there' nor do I have time. Respect me and my privacy as I'm trying to have a baby. Good day sir.

It wasn’t McEnroe that invaded Serena’s privacy; it was Garcia-Navarro.

You can imagine the backlash in the media – mainstream news media and mainstream sports media.  For example, today McEnroe was given a chance to apologize – very nice of CBS news to offer this opportunity.

"CBS This Morning" co-host Norah O'Donnell asked McEnroe whether he'd like to apologize. McEnroe replied, "No."

McEnroe turns the table and asks Charlie Rose, and I will paraphrase: Charlie, you play a lot of tennis, I see you on the courts.  Where do you think Serena would rank on the men’s circuit?  Rose ran away from the question like Ebola.

More from McEnroe: we are talking about something that I can’t believe we are even talking about.

Well, maybe in a rational world, John.  But this is CBS (and I am sure it will be the case wherever you go).  Believe it.  They insisted to keep talking about it.

The first portion of the interview ended: “No apology to Serena, really?”  “I’d be happy to apologize to Serena if that makes you feel better.”

Because, after all, that is really what matters.


McEnroe should run for president.  He would win in a landslide.


  1. Since I have no idea what 700 means, the author has missed their target.

    1. McEnroe is referring to his opinion of where Williams would be ranked if she played in the men's circuit.

      I apologize for not making this more clear. Those with a passing interest in sports, let alone tennis, would understand his reference.

    2. If tennis disappeared, I wouldn't notice. I still have no idea what 700 means because it is a number without a reference. Is 700 good or bad, and why? The simple fact that she is a professional indicates she is better than an amatuer.
      Given the X and y axis scores on the World's Smallest Political Quiz, I could tell by reference to the Diamond Chart whether someone was a centrist, liberal, conservative, authoritarian, or libertarian, regardless of the political value of that indication.

    3. Vonu, people that understand tennis understand rankings. He is saying that in men's professional tennis there would be 699 men that could beat Williams in a tennis match.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. That there may be 699 male players that if any chose to become trans-pan-non-whatever and compete in the xe-female-wymen tennis circuit would make Serena's life on the court a bit more difficult.

  4. Mr. Narby, your comment is worthwhile, but the profanity is not welcome. If you care to do so, please post an edited version.

  5. https://infogalactic.com/info/Battle_of_the_Sexes_(tennis)

  6. Absolutely, positively, unquestionably, beyond idiotic AND ANSWERED in 1998 when both Williams sisters got too big for their hot pants and were subsequently spanked by a 203 ranked man after bragging they could beat any man ranked around 200.


    Remember this interview the next time someone wah wah wahs about defunding that bastion of commie SJW propaganda and indoctrination that is NPR.

  7. you can google :

    "Transgender boy wins girls' wrestling championship in Texas"

    maybe one day will happen in female tennis

  8. "McEnroe should run for president. He would win in a landslide."

    BM, given the precedent known as The Donald, you might be right - we could have another Brat in the White House.

    However, at the risk of pouring cold coffee on your Breakfast at Wimbledon, Johnny Mac is a liberal Democrat.

    Nevertheless, I do like and have always liked McEnroe. He is articulate and intelligent.

    There have not been too many people / teams for whom I rooted harder than for him on July 4, 1981 when he beat Bjorn Borg to win Wimbledon and thereby snapped Borg's streak of 5 consecutive Wimbledon crowns.

    Liberty Mike

  9. I laugh sometimes, because ostracization is a tool well-spoke of in libertarian circles. Socialists are very adept at using it. Works much better when your group, millions strong, controls all of the media and academia.

    When libertarians try using it, they diminish their group by 25% (one person).