Fed Zeppelin

“A 2011 poll revealed that Federer was the second-most respected person in the world—behind only Nelson Mandela—and ahead of Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, Barack Obama and Pope Benedict XVI … Federer was something altogether different, captivating in a way that concurrently transcended tennis—yet also displayed it with an unsurpassed blend of flair and grace. It didn’t matter if you barely knew the sport or had been around it for 50 years: Federer was tennis’ avatar, a dazzling representation of tennis’ possibilities. No one has ever left more people swooning about all this sport can be.” Roger Federer announces his retirement. This is hardly a surprise, but it’s a bummer that injuries robbed Fed of a Serena-like send off.

+ From the archives: David Foster Wallace in the NYT (Gift Article): Roger Federer as Religious Experience. “Almost anyone who loves tennis and follows the men’s tour on television has, over the last few years, had what might be termed Federer Moments. These are times, as you watch the young Swiss play, when the jaw drops and eyes protrude and sounds are made that bring spouses in from other rooms to see if you’re O.K. The Moments are more intense if you’ve played enough tennis to understand the impossibility of what you just saw him do. ”

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