SF Sales

May 3, 2012

USATT Committee and Task Force Meetings and Minutes

As noted in my blog on April 27, one week ago I sent an email to the USATT board, staff, and committee chairs asking where I could find the minutes of USATT committee and task force meetings. The USATT bylaws require these be published within 30 days (Section 9.10). USATT has not been doing so over the last five years or so (since the new bylaws were created), and so either there have been zero meetings or they have not been following their bylaws. (And I happen to know they have had numerous committee and task force meetings.) This is not a case of them not realizing they were not following the bylaws as I have reminded them of this a number of times over the last three years, by email, at meetings, and in person.

One week later and the only response was a private email by one committee chair who said he kept minutes and sent them to USATT, but they were never published. (He attached a copy of the minutes.)

This is a clear case of USATT being wrong, they know they are wrong, and they refuse to do anything about it. I find this incredibly frustrating - the board knows fully well that the membership only selects two of their nine members, and so they are not accountable to the membership. Two are selected by the Elite Athletes. The other five are selected by the Nominating and Governance Committee. Three of the five members of that committee are non-table tennis people who were chosen by the USOC.

I wonder if there is any benefit in going directly to the USOC and ask that they require USATT to follow their own bylaws? I mean, seriously, isn't following your own rules a major no-brainer?

Learn to Pong Like a Champ

Here's Part 2 of 3 from 2011 USA National Men's Singles Champion Peter Li, covering 1) Getting Good Equipment; 2) Understanding Underspin versus Topspin; and 3) Developing the Deep Push. It's given both in text form and video (2:01). (Here's Part 1.)

Why Guo Yue?

Here's an article on why China picked Guo Yue as the third member of the Chinese Olympic Women's Team.

"As One" pictures

Here are a group of photos taken at the set of the upcoming table tennis movie "As One," care of Mike Meier, who plays an umpire in the movie (and is one in real life as well). He's the one umpiring in many of the pictures, including the first one.

Here are two articles on Senior Table Tennis

Amarillo Slim

I saw the obituary of the famous gambler in the paper (he died Sunday), and it mentioned how he had not only beaten Bobby Riggs in a money match at table tennis with an iron skillet, but claimed he had also won a money match against a "world champion," which didn't seem possible - until I discovered they'd used coke bottles for rackets. Here's the story. (Anyone know who the Taiwanese player was? There have been no "world champions" from Taiwan, at least at the World Table Tennis Championships run by the ITTF.)

Bassnectar's "Ping Pong"

Here's Bassnectar's latest music (4:32), entitled, you guessed it, "Ping Pong." It starts with the sound of a ping-pong ball bouncing, and throughout much of it the beat is to a bouncing ping-pong ball.

Non-Table Tennis - SF Sales

The last two days have been nice ones for my "other" career, science fiction & fantasy writing.

  • I sold a story to Electric Spec, "In the Belly of the Beast," which tells the story of a sorcerer who kills dragons by getting swallowed alive, and then living in the dragon's stomach, protected by a force field, and bringing anything the dragon swallows into the force field - thereby starving the dragon to death. Unfortunately, the daughter he abandoned many years ago to go to sorcery school is also swallowed by the dragon, as well as a belligerent warrior. (It features the only sorcerer versus warrior battle ever fought in the stomach of a dragon.)  I've sold 59 short stories, and this is the 130th different publication I've been published in. (Here's a complete listing of my written work - over 1300 published articles and stories.)
  • I'm on the verge of selling a story to Flagship Magazine - they asked if I could do a rewrite of the ending. This story, "The Oysters of Pinctada," is about a space pirate who kidnaps a king and his crew in an attempt to find the secret of their giant pearls - and the lengths to which the king's people (including his son and daughter) will go to get him back.
  • The acquisitions editor for a publisher liked the first three chapters of my SF novel "Campaign 2100" and asked to see the rest of it. (She was a big West Wing fan, as was I, and the novel is basically West Wing in the 22nd century.)
  • Another publisher asked to see my fantasy novel "The Giant Face in the Sky." (Note - I have just the two novels making the rounds.)

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