January 12, 2017

USATT Election
As noted in yesterday's blog, USATT has an election coming up. Yay!!! Here's info. It was also in yesterday's USATT Insider, and will be in a mass email by USATT to members this Friday.

The candidates are Attila Malek and Rajul Sheth, who are running for the open At-Large position (a four-year term) held by Mike Babuin the past eight years. (He's term-limited from running again.) As you'll learn from their campaign statements, both have been very active and successful in their table tennis careers. I've debated about whether to endorse one, but frankly, I don't want to do that when I'm fine with either - both will bring their expertise to develop the sport, both at the grassroots and elite levels. When the day comes that I do endorse a candidate, it'll likely mean that there's both a candidate I really want to see on the board AND a candidate that I really don't want to see on the board. And believe me, there are many who fit both categories!

One reason I don't want to get into this is that while I agree on most issues with both, there are also some disagreements. I've found that when I get into these things, if you agree with someone on 9 out of 10 issues, guess which one gets all the attention? I'm ready to work with either, but at the same time, at some point I'll want to sit down with whoever won and go over my thoughts on the their campaign statements - specifically, the specifics! Yes, the Devil is in the details. Trying to get things done with USATT, with its severe lack of resources despite being an Olympic sport governing body for a country of 320 million, can sometimes be maddening. I know; I have my own campaign promises that I've been working towards. (I'm halfway through my own four-year term.)

Of course, one added incentive to staying out of this is that for the next ten days or so I'll be working 18 hours/day (Tim's book - see below - plus my usual coaching, blogging and other writing, USATT, MDTTC, and other work), so I don't really have time right now to get into political discussions. Later on I'll blog about upcoming USATT activities, including my own plans for this year.

But none of this stops me from having some fun at their expense - Anagram Man strikes again!

Rajul Sheth:

  • Jar Let Hush. He's halfway to Jar Jar (Binks), he calls "Let!" when you smash a winner, and if you ask him important questions, he says, "Hush!"
  • Let Jars, Huh? Yes, as his first act on the board he'll require clubs to have these Let Jars, and you have to put a quarter in it whenever you call a let. Huh? (But the money goes to support the club.)

Attila Malek:

  • I Talk Tamale. Huh???
  • Malta Talkie. He stars in a Mediterranean country's movies, with sound, circa 1920s?
  • Llama Eat Kit. So he wants USATT to feed South American pack animals?
  • Talk Email At. Okay, this is better, he'll Talk with you, Email with you, and of course "At" is just short for the @ in his email address.  


  • He's God!

Daily Update: Volume 19 of History of U.S. Table Tennis
Tim Boggan and I started work at 3PM on Tuesday, Jan. 10. I'm doing the page layouts and photo work. Book is projected to be 25 chapters, 500 pages, 1700 graphics. Current status, through Wednesday night, Jan. 11:

  • 80 pages
  • 4 chapters, front and back covers, 4 front pages
  • 281 graphics

Calf Injury Update
It's 90% healed. I'm back to regular coaching starting today. However, I have a light schedule until this Sunday - then I get busy. No more updates unless I reinjure it.

New Coaching Articles from Samson Dubina

USATT Insider
Here's the issue that came out yesterday.

Three ITTF Articles

Charlotte Bardsley: The Story So Far
Here's the article on the English Under 12 Champion.

Epische Trailer Finalisten Masters 2016
Here's the video (3 min) - lots of great slow motion play.

Ping-Pong, Anyone? From the New Yorker Cartoon Lounge!
Here's the video (2:10). "In this episode, Bob Mankoff plays table tennis with a robot and looks at Ping-Pong cartoons from the magazine."

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