Getting to Know ...

by Mark Sweeney | 10/21/04 5:00am

Andres Reyes: Before I answer any of these questions, I just want to point out how completely shocked I am that you have taken the time to write about the men's tennis team. I was really expecting to get bumped for the expose on the low quality of grips that the women's tennis team uses. I really am. But I feel like I must make the most of this opportunity.

The Dartmouth: If you could set up a tennis match against any current professional or collegiate player, who would it be and why?

AR: Any warm-blooded male would put Maria Sharapova as their choice. And frankly, that's not a bad choice, but it's completely unoriginal. As the saying that I live by goes, "Everyone else plays checkers, we play chess." So my choice would have to be ... Vanessa Webb. Oh yes, my dear friends. Vanessa Webb. The much more talented, more athletic, more gifted of the Webb siblings. Not to mention, she's hot.

It's a little known fact that Ms. Vanessa Webb was once the best female collegiate women's tennis player in our fair country and it would be an extreme honor -- no, scratch that -- it would be a privilege to play with the Webb sibling that got all the good genes. And cause it would piss Dave off. Then I would take her out to dinner and hit on her. And that would piss off Dave even more. Anything really to piss Dave off I would do. Seriously.

David Webb: I'd have to say Yannick Noah. This is kind of a terrible answer because Yannick Noah is old now and doesn't really play that much anymore. He's a sick Frenchman who basically invented the on-the-run tweener back in the day. He was also kind of a tennis pothead who was all mixed up in the spiritualism of the game. Would definitely be a cool guy to bat it around with.

The D: You are two of the premier tennis players on campus and in your league. Who or what inspires you to reach and maintain the lofty athletic status and fitness level that you currently enjoy?

AR: Actually Mark, I'd rather not talk about my fitness. I try very hard in maintaining a peak fitness but I would rather not tell the world what an incredible athlete I am. I am in terrific shape but I want it to be a secret. I'd rather have think of me as this roly-poly laid-back guy who can't make it up a flight of stairs without stopping halfway for a break.

Well actually, that's true. Stairs dominate my life. I actually had a nightmare about it last night and talking about stairs scares me. Next question, please.

The D: You both hail from major metropolitan areas, as Dave pointed out to me he was from Toronto and Andres noted he is a Boston resident. What are the best and worst things about your respective hometowns?

DW: I'd say the worst thing about people from Boston is that they feel insecure about being in New York's shadow. I mean, a city that has a sign saying "reverse the curse" as you drive in is whack. The city is gripped by the shortcomings of their beloved Red Sox, and most Massholes just wander the streets drunk, angry and looking to take out their pent-up aggression on any unsuspecting bystanders. They're pretty much happy they're not the Montreal Alouettes. I'm not sure if that answered the question though. Toronto is super.

AR: Well, that's really a two-part question for me, Mark. Speaking on purely technical terms, I am not from Boston, per se. I am from a small town 15 minutes north of Boston called Lexington. Yep, that's right, all you history majors. The birthplace of American liberty.

So living in a small town not unlike Hanover is fun. Not much to do, but I really can't complain. But, since 90 percent of the people who live in the suburbs of Boston say they are from Boston, I'll answer as a true Bostonian. Boston is the best. Definitely the best city in the world. I mean we've got the Red Sox, the Patriots, and I guess I should mention the Celtics and the Bruins but I'd rather not.

I like to compare myself to the Patriots. Everybody underestimated the Pats last year and look what happened. Super Bowl champs. Boo-yah. I still haven't figured out how I am on the same level as the Patriots, but there's nothing wrong with comparing myself to a proven winner, right?

The D: Andres, is there a more perfectly realized television program in the history of the medium than "JAG?"

AR: Absolutely not. I mean, what's better than a Navy lawyer who successfully defends a petty officer of shoplifting in the morning, prosecutes a lieutenant of manslaughter in the afternoon, and yet STILL has time to fly a F-14 and shoot down two enemy fighters at night? Honestly, though. Every time I watch the show (on daily on the USA network), I have to pinch myself from not dropping out of school and enlisting in the Navy. Not to mention that he has to do all of this while fending off the advances of a Marine colonel (Catherine Bell) who is too hot for words.

The D: While it is tough to find another team that could match your squad's overall appeal and flair, what other Dartmouth sports team do you especially admire?

DW: I think I'd have to say club tennis. Those kids have heart. Watching captain Ali Youssefi '05 leading the team in running stadiums is honestly an inspiration for anyone to behold. While completely unskilled with the racquet, Ali inspires the team to reach for a higher level. The cricket team's got to be up there as well. I used to play in high school and I have to say those guys are pretty dirty.

AR: The men's tennis team should be the most followed team on campus. Bottom line: We're hot.

The D: When it comes to ranking the best Rolling Stones albums over the course of their illustrious career, some would choose "Let It Bleed" or "Sticky Fingers" as the top record; after all, both contain many well-known and revered tracks. But in terms of the LP that most represents the greatness of the Stones, I would argue 1972's "Exile on Main Street" couldn't be beaten. That said, what are the differences between Yankee fans and Red Sox fans?

AR: Well first off, I would have to say that Red Sox fans are about 1,000 times more loyal than Yankee fans. Look up the phrase "October Fan" in the dictionary and you'll see a picture of 20,000 Yankee fans dusting off and putting on their Yankees hats that they haven't worn in a year. God, I hate Yankees fans. They are so annoying. The fact that even in the midst of the Patriots' fantastic run over the past few years (can you say "dynasty"?!?) the Red Sox still make the front page every day is just a testament to the loyalty of Red Sox fans.

And don't even get me started on Cubs fans. I hate how they complain about the fact that they are more "cursed" than Red Sox fans. No way. The way I see it, the Red Sox is that guy who takes a girl out on a Saturday night, wines and dines her, takes her to the "spot" and is expecting things to get hot and heavy when she tells you that she has to get home to make a curfew that doesn't really exist. The Cubs are those guys that stay at home on a Saturday night and watch TV all night. You tell me who is more "cursed."

The D: Dave, a little known fact about you is prior to becoming an all-Ivy tennis competitor you were a rising star in the Canadian women's field hockey ranks. Could you describe how you were regrettably forced to shift your athletic focus away from field hockey?

DW: I went to a British-style all-guys school in Toronto and yeah, we had a field hockey team for one year. The only other teams we had to play were all girls' schools with these tall Amazon-looking women that beat the crap out of my shins. This was grade eight and I was deeply in my "awkward stage" so while everyone else hit on the girls after the games I sat on the bus with my friend, Pat Young. But then one day Pat made friends with some of the girls and I was back to sitting alone on the bus popping my pimples. We never won a game by less than eight goals, and eventually the other schools called a meeting and got us kicked out of the conference. That was pretty much the end of my field hockey career.

The D: It's been fun, fellas, but I need to stop the interview here to leave space for my 4,000 word article titled "An In-Depth Look at the Women's Tennis Team's Shoe Collection." Any final thoughts?

DW: Keep moving your feet, stay down and swing through. The wind can be your friend, and lobs in the sun always work. Cheating is wrong except on big points, and mixed doubles can be fun but only if one of the girls gets pegged at least once. Eat as much protein as you can, and Rue Ste. Catherine is not Canada. Peace.

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