Tuesday, March 15, 2011

World's Worst Loser

Have you ever beat someone playing squash only to have your opponent be a sore loser? They might slouch off the court without a handshake, they may yell an obscenity and stomp off, or they may even re-argue a few let calls during the match that they felt were thoroughly unjustified. 

But what happens when you play a lunatic? 

Here's a report from the UK of a thoroughly disgruntled man who started arguing over the number of games he had won. The argument gets heated, both players start calling one another liars, and then, as his opponent bends down to pick up his racket, he hauls off and kicks him in the face, hard, breaking his jaw. "The victim later told police the sensation was ‘like crunching Polos,’ and he was left in a lot of pain with blood pouring out." 

Teeth were lost, the jaw was broken, the police were called, and the friendship was ruined. Plus someone had to clean up all that blood. 

This man was no squashist, he was a lunatic with a racket, a guy whose unbridled competitive streak had no brake, no warning voice between his ears saying, Hold it, maybe I ought to back off. 

To his credit, I guess, the fellow regrets his actions, particularly since he will now have to pay for the extensive dental work on his erstwhile friend's jaw, which has left his bite misaligned. And as in the US, there is the little matter of emotional damages, which has yet to be decided by a court. 

I have on fairly rare occasions played someone who is clearly too aggressive -- too aggressive arguing lets, too violent in their swing, too upset over a match -- too emotional for the game of squash. I say thanks very much, and I never play them again. 

The game of squash ultimately boils down to two people in a box with two rackets and a ball. We don't need an attitude problem in that confined space as well, it would get way too crowded.

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