Writing Supplement

This essay is a writing supplement with no specific question.

It’s just my luck to play the first match of the season on one of the windiest days of the year. However, that doesn’t faze me by now. My head is in the game, and nothing can break my concentration. My partner prepares her serve, tossing the tennis ball upwards, striking the ball hard. In a crouched position behind the net, I watch her serve; it’s a 50/50 shot, a fastball that’s just enough to earn an ace. Or at least that’s the intention. Instead, the ball strikes my wrist, the impact hard enough to make me lose hold of my racquet. My concentration is broken, and I hear a winced “ooo…” behind me, the “my bad” evident in her voice. A wide smile spreads across my cheeks, the pain replaced with ironic laughter.

But I love tennis. I really do. My favorite part about tennis is the serve, the hardest and most essential skill in the game. Without it, you can’t even begin to play, or to think about the other complexities that unfold with the match. The serve has many components that seem to all move at the same time, and before you know it, the racquet (not racket) has made contact with the ball, and you’re sending that tennis ball hurtling 130 mph at Roger Federer in the US Open.

That’s what I want to do. I see life as one big tennis match. I want to perfect my best skills and strengthen my worst skills in order to achieve my goals, and when I reach these goals, I’m not going to stop there. I’m going to reach even higher. My obstacles better watch out. I have an Andy Roddick serve in one sleeve and a Pete Sampras serve in the other.

So if my first serve fails me, I’ll start again, call out “love-15,” and use my Pete Sampras serve. I’m resilient, and I’ll bounce right back up. So if both of those serves fail me, it’s okay– I’ve been practicing my own signature serve. It may not be as fast as Andy Roddick’s serve or as topspin heavy as Pete Sampras,’ but the Angelica Calip serve is just as good.

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