Last night in Westminster the excitement was palpable. The one word zipping around the gym more than "shuttlecock" was: "tournament."
Oh, the heart races at the thought of it! The English word brings to mind ancient battles and jousts and tests of mettle, fair maidens giving away tokens to their champions.
In Chinese, the word for tournament is way more mundane: 比赛 (bi3 sai4), literally "comparison contest." We'll see how my skills stack up.
Today, Friday, March 28, is the first day of the Colorado Open Badminton Tournament. I will be playing singles, men's doubles and mixed doubles. The doubles events are Saturday, but tonight are the singles matches. My first match-up is against Steffen, a German guy who is pretty good. It will be a tough match, but it is good I am playing him early on. He's got more stamina than me so if I faced him tired I'd have less of a chance. My main hope is to overpower him early and bump him out of the way.
I am playing men's doubles with my friend Note, a kid from Thailand. Apparently lots of Thai youngsters have English nicknames that are random words. Note's real name is Pawis. His brother's nickname is Knot. He said most of his friends have similarly monosyllabic English nicknames, so I guess I would fit right in, although the names seem to be nouns.
Last night Note and I played against the pair who won Gold in men's doubles (B) last year, and we beat them 21-10. So we feel pretty good, but we'll have to be aggressive against the players we don't know.
Michala and I will be playing mixed doubles, and again, if we can make it past our first match-up (against Steffen - again - and this woman Addy), we should be OK. I think there are only 8 teams so we have a decent chance of medaling. We've been playing well together recently, and last night we both felt pretty confident.
M is guaranteed a singles medal since there are only 2 women playing singles at all! The winner will get gold in B, the loser will get a gold in C.
I'm excited. I'm wearing my shorts under my work pants. Stay tuned for an update!