I just realized how lucky I am. Every year I go to the Legg Mason Tennis Classic in August and collect tons of autographs. I have Andre's (He's the hardest to get), Andy x2 (easy), Scrichaphan (easy), Schalken x2, Blake, Vicente, Niemenin, Coria, Gonzalez, Todd Martin, the Rochus brothers, the Bryan Bros, Meligeni, Michael Chang, Nick Kiefer, Rusedski, Lapentti, Santoro, and Corretja x2 and Coria. The Corretja and Coria ones are the best stories. For Alex Corretja, I first got it when he was on a practice court mobbed by people and when he signed it, he wrote ALEX and underlined it. Later, I was strolling around and found him stretching on a bench, with no one near him!! Obviously without his racquets, many American casual fans didn't recognize him. I ran up to him asked him for his autograph but not before he said "Hello, how are you doing?" in a Spanish accent. He was appreciative that I recognized him. (at the time he was about #17 in the world) He signed the ball beautifully, unlike at the practice court, writing out his entire name and making it all swirly and neat. I thanked him very kindly and went off, but later got a picture with him. That's why I like Alex so much, besisdes the fact he's Catholic and a good guy. I got to see Coria play from about 3 feet away, no joke. This is at the Legg Mason Tennis Classic, and the guy was not even playing on the Grandstand vs. Fernando Gonzalez! I didn't even really know about Coria, I was there to watch Gonzalez is pound it, but Coria won out. I ran to him after he finished the Spanish interviews and got his autograph and a pic with him, it was awesome, and at the time he was like #85!!! Tell me about your guys autograph experiences. I also got pics with Meligeni (right after he beat Roddick), and O. Rochus.
I'd always thought that autograph hunters were saddo geeks. Now I know I was right all along.

Another stage in the takeover of one of the few sensible message boards on the Web by tedious school kids.

And by the way, don't they teach you in school anymore that long paragraphs are very hard to read. Not that short paragraphs would make much difference in your case.
i saw federer practice at the courts in montreal during TMS last year. I was jut watching in awe trying to absorb what I could and was talking to this lady who seems to follow him to lots of places...hehe. So after a while he starts packing up and my mom says to me 'Come on! Get in line and try to get his autograph!' I didnt even think about it to be honest. I didnt know we could do those things...:> Last time I went to live tennis was the du maurier open when I was much younger (im 17 now)...soo anyway....I was too shy plus there was a ton of little kids with the huge tennis balls (their parents gave em the 25$ and they run around getting whoever to autograph it so they can **** it. Pisses me off, they dont know/appreciate the players) so my mom gets the program out of my hand and just shoves it right out there and he signed it, very nicely might I add. he also signed a ball. It was great hehe.

I was also like a foot away from coria practicing but i was too shy to ask his coach/manager to get him to autograph. When u see coria practicing (he was shirtless) from a distance, youd think he was a kid. I thought he was some 15 year old

So....sorry if thats 'geeky' or whatever but It was a great day for me :>


Not geeky at all. Truly great days are worth remembering. One day you'll tell your grandkids that you stood next to the ONE, the GOAT, and they will be in awe. (Of course, by then they'll be using some funky technology that serves 200, the courts will be bigger, and the players modified for the game--you know, a big club like arm and freaky legs that glide).
Fat Boy said:
I'd always thought that autograph hunters were saddo geeks. Now I know I was right all along.

Another stage in the takeover of one of the few sensible message boards on the Web by tedious school kids.

And by the way, don't they teach you in school anymore that long paragraphs are very hard to read. Not that short paragraphs would make much difference in your case.
I think there's only being one saddo geek posted in this thread... :roll:

Jesus it's ONE THREAD, it's not a takeover!

Enjoyed the Stories MaSha :D
There is absolutely no autograph story that would come close to yours in quantily or quality, except for the story of the autograph my friend got from Maria Sharapova and Anna, but the circumstancces are too lurid to print and would leave me open to a libel suit.
LOL pound cat,

Tell me about it! Maria and Anna are certainly, how can I put it up for a good time shall we say.

You might find out when your older MaSha!

Here's a clue: Maria & Anna were.......&.....&.......& then ...... Oh, I just can't say anymore. Too embarrassing. Scandalous. Disgusting Mother Russia cries for you both.
I think a lot of kids run around getting autographs because it's more interesting to them than watching tennis. At least that was the case with my kids when I took them to tournaments. Now, they just try to avoid going to tournaments. Of course, since they are minors, they sometimes don't have a choice. :lol:

I rarely get autographs now. But when you really admire a player, and follow his/her progress, getting an autograph can mean a great deal to you. On the shelf above my computer, is the autograph I got from Pat Rafter. It's just on the back of a ticket stub, but I put it in a frame, and I'll never forget it. Because it was the first time I saw him play live, and it was great. It's a wonderful reminder of that memory.

So don't knock it until you try it. :D
I was 17 and was at NBTA for 2~3 weeks. This was the time when Williams sisters were upcoming juniors with braids on. I saw them walking right in front of my dorm room. So I went up to them and said that my room was right there, and if they could wait just a min till I get a pen. It turns out that my room was locked...I came back and told they could go.....-_-;

At the same week I saw Rios...I had nerve to go up to them and asked if he would teach me how to hit flat serve. He said "I am not a coach, He's a coach, ask him..."

I got one from Tommy Haas after a year or so. He wasn't particulary friendly or unfriendly.

I also got ones from Mats Willander, Vince Van Patten, John Lloyd, and Henri Leconte.. I had pics with Mats and Henri. It was a great moment since they had already made their marks in tennis. Mats was very quiet. Henri was pretty funny. John Lloyd had the most interaction with fans, and was very nice.
I see autographs as little more than a testament to our ill fame and celebrity obsessed culture.

"Oh, look. I got close enough to (insert celebrity here) for him/her to scribble something illegible, and then steal my pen. I feel like a much more worthy person now."

I'll go one step further and say that it's wrong to encourage kids to see value in such meaningless nonsense. Rather, encourage the kids to seek out opportunities to exchange something meaningful with their favorite players. An experience that the player will remember, as well. While this is obviously more difficult than merely getting an autograph, it is also infinitely more valuable. It'll sure give the kid more insight into the player (for better or for worse) than will an illegible scribble obtained while some other worshipper is stepping on your foot.

I've obtained two scribbles in my lifetime - both when I was about 13 years old - a hockey goalie no-one will know, and Mario Andretti. I honestly never saw any value in either, and wondered why I had obtained them. I've known a few Major League baseball players quite well - and I never once thought of getting them to sign anything.

The only possible reason I see for getting an autograph is to recall a valuable experience with the person - like if you hit some balls with your favorite player for 10 minutes. They could write something like "Keep working on that second serve", and sign their name. Ideally, there would be a photo of you and the player to go along with it. This would serve as a memory of an enjoyable experience.

What memory is rekindled by an illegible scribble? The memory of stretching your arm out as far as it can reach in order for some person to scribble on whatever you've put out there to scribble upon, where the one you worship has absolutely no knowledge of your existence?

It's better to teach kids to aim higher; to value more meaningful things than a mere and highly impersonal scribble of a pen.



You have an interesting and logical view on things, yet there's a tinge of idealism. I agree with you about the autograph thing. Never occurred to me to get an autograph and I would never set my kids up to do that. If, on the other hand, my kids happened to find themselves in a situation where a Pro was interacting with them in a meaningful way (not in the usual get the autograph way), and they sighed a piece of memorabelia for them, I think that would be cool, but only because the interaction was special and they would have connected with a player instead of just idolizing them from a distance.

Oh yea, Deuce, because of your analytical and logical posts, I'd say you were an INTP (an NT for sure) on the Meyers Briggs scale--Am I close?
Deuce, my dad met Wayne Arthurs in a box at the Legg Mason, and asked him to adress it to me and sign it. My dad had told him that I was really into tennis. He took the tennis ball and on his own initiative wrote: "To (my name), Wimbledon is waiting for you."
This is my most treasured autograph, and one I have in a cheap IKEA frame. I know that Wayne has always wanted to win this tournament, and it means so much to him that I thought it was really cool of him to write this. I understand that this is worth more than a regular scribble, but it's still fun to go up to the players, and have a proof you "met'' them.

Wow that sounds cool, when I hit with Ferrero I got a photo with him and he signed my giant poster of him with his autograph just under his name on the poster.

I also got him to sign my old racket, a More Control DB800, which I can safely say I never use now and keep it safe!

I also got him to sign my piece of paper at last years Monte Carlo TMS (this was about 9 months after I met him) needless to say he didn't remember me :(

O well,


It was when I went to his training camp a couple of summers ago in Valencia and he was there, he had a hit will all the academies players as I was there for 1 week I got a chance.

He didn't hit with much spin as I think he was going easy on me, although I would of liked him to of given me his best as then I could of said that I have played properly with the best player in the world :wink:

He is a really nice man and it's one of the greatest experiences in my life so far!

liam, thats interesting that you say hes nice. He seems like a huge ***** on the court and during interviews. when he loses, he wont even congratulate the opponent. federer whooped him and all he did was blame injury, which is acceptable, but he didnt even congratulate him or say he played well or ANYTHING, thats just poor. Maybe hes nicer when theres nothing at stake :>

Cool story. Did he speak any english or do you speak spanish?
Morpheus - I don't see any value in such restrictive 'scales' or other such labels. I prefer to dine on a genuine individuality.

No doubt this perspective, as well, classsifies me as being a 'something' on someone's 'scale'...


Without labels, the majority seem lost....


A lot of people have been typed at one time or another, and I'm guessing that had you been given the MBTI, you would likely have tested INTP (which is a compliment by the way, at least in my book). You exhibit many of those characteristics, some of which are to be highly independent, big picture oriented, damn good at strategy games and thinking through complex problems, and above all, resistant to typing systems. :wink:

(BTW, they say that Albert Einstein was an INTP).


Touche, Cypo, my type is prone to flattery, sucking up, and kissing ass. BTW, I've been watching your posts and I wonder if you shouldn't play pro with your potential you could be great! You are just that good, and intellectually gifted as well. :wink:

Actually, everything I indicated is apparent in Deuce's collection of posts, except his ability at (or love for) strategic games, which he will have to confirm if he so chooses. The negatives are also there, but do I really need to point those out since this board does such a great job at picking on one another already?
Somehow Morpheus, you remind me of someone, but maybe it's just my 'mothermania'. (not that I have one, it just goes with the territory)

For the record (sorry, no pun intended) - I didn't mean to imply that your flattery of Deuce was empty -Personally, I like both kinds, Phils and Deuces.
And, on topic - my son got to hit with Thomas Muster and get his autograph (I shelled out the 20 Euro for an oversized ball) and it's a really special memory for him. In the eyes of a seven year old, he and Muster are now old friends, and I'm really grateful to Muster for being so friendly to him.
Liam, next time get him to sign your report card if necessary (which it probably isn't but it would be very, very funny). He wouldn't know what it was...his English isn't too good LOL
Cypo - are you nuts? Your utter disregard for your own flesh and blood is despicable. Allowing your child to hit with Muster? Everyone knows that he turns into a madman as soon as he embarks on a tennis court. You are fortunate that your son was not decapitated by this raging lunatic.

Morpheus... The only games I enjoy playing are physical sports (such as tennis, baseball, hockey...). While I very much thrive on challenge, the challenge must be part of a... well, of a larger picture. Games which exist solely unto themselves attract me not at all. Board games bore me to tears; I do not possess nearly the required patience for chess. When I play tennis, I often very deliberately create challenge for myself. For example, if I have three options on a shot, I will without fail always choose the most difficult option - because in it lies the greatest challenge. As those who know me on the court comment, I thus play a very 'high risk', 'feast or famine' type of tennis, which, while at times beautiful, is usually not to be confused with good strategy, or intelligent tennis.

Sorry if I've disappointed you.

I hope you remember this little exchange. When I die, I'm naming you to be my primary biographer.
Maybe Muster's mellowed with age, but with my son he was a real sweetheart. Actually he seems to have a real way with kids and is taking over the junoir tennis here (watch out ATP !).

He hit with some young hotshots too, and there he put all the energy into the spin - the ball nose dived around the service line and then sprang away like a bat outta hell - the young'uns did pretty well and tried to get Muster going side to side, but.....