<snip>But back on topic. The second thing that strikes me as decidedly un-Frenchman-like about Monfils is his lack of sophistication. At some level, he’s just a big dumb kid who loves to whale on a tennis ball, and he doesn’t have any hang-ups about showing the world that he’s any more than that. I like that in people. That particular kind of insouciance is relatively easy to find in Americans and comparatively difficult to locate in the French , or other western European folks.
In fact, one of the few things that seems a little bogus to me these days about The Mighty Federer is that he seems too absorbed in showing the world that he is more than a tennis player – that he’s International Man incarnate. The cues to this drift of TMF’s are his increasingly meticulous grooming and exceedingly smooth, Senatorial manner (although Dirty Little Rafa has a neat way of nudging him out of that conceit).
At times, I’ve wanted to grab the guy and shake him by the shoulders: It’s okay, Roge, you don’t have to be any more than a tennis player. Really. I’m not looking to you to solve the problem of world hunger, nice as it would be to get that done. I’m trying (unsuccessfully) to find a link to this scary story – quite a long profile at that - that ran in one of the UK papers a few weeks ago. The piece opened with this very weird riff on TMF’s deep interest in – get this! – fashion. And elsewhere he has said that his favorite designer is “Prada.”
Isn’t that, like, some Russian newspaper?<snip>