Weekly updates about all the pop culture, race & politics, Bougie Black People™ shit, and other grand tomfoolery we cover here on VSB. Plus early heads up about new tees, new contributors, and our events. Greatness has to do with more than athletic ability – Andy Roddick, with a serve of 150 mph is on no one’s greatest list (except for maybe one of “greatest finessers of multimillion endorsement deals while barely winning shit” with Anna Kournikova).
Serena Jameka Williams from Compton, California is one of, if not the best tennis player of all time because of her dominance and rebranding of the sport in spite of an elitist community that resisted accepting her as one of their own.
She went from being ostracized as a villain the United States Tennis Association to being the face of it, selling out arenas in record time in a sport that was declining in attendance.
Shamira is a twentysomething New Yorker who likes all things Dipset.
You can join her in waxing poetically about chicken, Cam'ron, and gentrification (gotta have some balance) under the influence of varying amounts of brown liquor at her semi-monthly blog, shamspam.You know what you need in your life? Not even a Wes Anderson joint, but something you might see as part of a museum exhibit before you head to the dinosaur section.
In 2015, the New York Times bifurcated her “large biceps and mold-breaking muscular frame” with that of her competitors, who “chose not to” pursue the same frame because they “want to be a woman” or don’t want to “feel unfeminine.” In 2009, sentient pile of black mold Jason Whitlock infamously associated Serena’s then-struggles to return to the top with her size, claiming that if Serena could just focus on becoming leaner, she would become the greatest ever – which is quite the criticism from someone who can only claim to be singlehandedly the greatest in keeping the pork pie hat industry alive.
And now, in 2017, the same frame that has somehow robbed her of her claim to femininity, that was consistently and unfoundedly associated with aggression and a brutishness that is unbecoming of a female tennis star, is being evaluated as unfit to stand in a man’s apparently dutiful place in history.This is after 23 Grand Slams across multiple generations of tennis peers, after being inaccurately reduced to a passing fad by both her contemporaries, and after redefining the entire approach to women’s tennis in such an unprecedented manner that a tennis star the likes of Maria Sharapova – who actually has been suspended for taking banned substances, as opposed to Serena, despite near-constant accusations to the contrary – can be reduced to near-insignificance.Roger Federer can’t make that same claim, much less Mc Enroe.The last year has been huge for Serena Williams and Alexis Ohanian.Since last December, the tennis superstar and the Reddit cofounder, respectively, found out they were expecting a child, got engaged, and are about to get married. In fact, when they first met, Williams tried to get Ohanian to go away by telling him there was a rat nearby.With the new benchmark being set and Serena’s serve taking her through a dominant run in the early aughts, the never-ending question started to rear its ugly head amongst professional tennis critics: could Serena be strong enough to compete with men?