The Deuce Club, 10.8

by: Peter Bodo | October 08, 2010

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104900472 by Jackie Roe, TW Social Director

Hi, everyone! Sorry this is late; it's been another week of late nights, thanks to an influx of work, tennis on the other side of the globe, and postseason baseball. I don't know what it is about the playoffs that reels me in. To me, it feels almost like a different sport from regular season baseball, and I can't bear to miss a minute of it. Any other baseball fans out there? Who are you rooting for? Who's winning what? (I'm a Yankees fan. Fully prepared for the virtual tomato- and shoe-throwing.)

A quick thank you goes out to everyone who helped me celebrate my two-year anniversary as your Social Director and Deuce Club host last week. I loved seeing some old faces (monikers?) back in the DC and appreciated all of the thoughtful comments.

Who here is on Twitter? It seems to have really taken off among both tennis players and fans, so I'd been meaning to give it some attention here for a while. The unveiling of the "new" Twitter brought the idea to the surface; in honor of this development I wanted to solicit your thoughts on the social networking website. Are you a fan? Who do you follow, and whose Tweets are can’t-miss? (Click here to follow me, though my account pales in comparison to Maggie May's. You know, Andy Murray's dog. I'm so taken by it I've passed the link along to people who've never even heard of Andy Murray.)

The main topic of today's DC is pretty random, I'll admit—even more so than usual. It was born out of my activities last weekend, which bothered me enough that I felt the need to flesh them out with my TW family.

I'm a hoarder. A pack rat. Nothing like what you see in the reality shows (linz, you know what I’m talking about), but I have a tendency to hold on to, well, anything. Much of it is a result of being a sentimental fool. I keep whatever I deem to have sentimental value—even when its overall value is debatable!

Last weekend, I came face to face with a particularly disconcerting expression of this habit. Late at night, I was saving photos to my external hard drive when I decided to poke around in there and check out what else what I'd saved over the years. What did I find but hundreds of old instant message conversations, e-mails I'd copied/pasted into a Word document, even text messages I'd actually typed into Word (since phones only had the capacity to store a handful of them back then). I dove into the files, reading conversations I'd had with friends, exes, and family members. Before I knew it, it was 3 AM. I went to bed with a nauseating feeling, like my stomach had dropped into my pinky toe—not because I'd wasted so much time, but because I was embarrassed! Of how immature I was when those conversations took place. In those files I saw that version of myself I was so proud and relieved to grow out of.

I'll get back to my reaction in a bit.

Digital messages aren't the only things I hoard. I still have every single wrestling magazine I've ever bought. Literally hundreds sitting in bins in my garage. I convinced myself that they'd be worth a mint someday, which is why I kept them. Or maybe I would've held on to them anyway, just because it's what I do.

I have bags of birthday and Christmas cards, tickets from concerts and sporting events, movie stubs, even boarding passes. Tennis isn't exempt; I still have all those issues of TENNIS Magazine (what's my deal with magazines?), still have all of the paper OoPs I carried around with me at the tournaments I attended. I can tell you who played on Tuesday of the men’s draw in Cincinnati in 2008.

I suppose as far as bad habits go, this one's pretty innocuous. But it doesn't stop me from constantly questioning why I do it. What's the point? Would I miss any of these items if they were gone? As my weekend experience can attest, looking back at these keepsakes isn't productive and can actually be downright unpleasant. Even when the stuff dredges up beloved memories, going back to them still doesn’t do one much good. Having an attachment to "things," clinging to the past—that's not healthy. I'd even say it's self-sabotaging. But as I’m not Dr. Phil, I’ll stop there.

So now, TWibe, tell us: Are you a hoarder, too? If so, what do you keep? What's the oldest (or the strangest) object you've held on to and what's the meaning behind it? If hoarding isn’t one of your bad habits, share something that is. Gnawing on tissues while watching your favorite play tennis? (Nancy, that one's for you.) Never finishing what you start? Using too many emoticons when you type? Whatever it is, I'd like to hear it. We'll end up with an interesting battery of compulsions, I’m sure . . .

Have a fantastic weekend!

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