Tennis and Life Camps

Why Are We Even Here?

Last weekend, our daughter swam in her college conference swim championships. She was seeded anywhere from 7th to 10th in her individual events, and had one of the slower relay times on her relay teams going in. She swam the meet of her life. She ended up with five firsts and a fourth, and was […]


This is a love story. The end of December, Boy and Betty Toy and I met at the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis.  We sat across the desk from each other, Boy and Betty with pens in hand.  Boy teared up.  He said, “I woke up this morning. l looked at Betty and said, ‘Can […]


The Fridinger family – a longtime TLC family – has been named the National USTA Family of the Year. And they don’t want anyone to know. They don’t think what they do is a big deal.  Or should be made a big deal.  They would be happy if everyone would just go away.  So they […]

Where Is The Light?

Tonight is the darkest, longest night of the year.  Winter Solstice. Sometimes it can feel like the darkness will never lift. We are divided politically, religiously, economically, racially; by gender, sexuality, personally, and societally.  We shout over each other.  We do not listen.  We do not ask what it feels like to be the person […]

mine, Mine, MINE!!!

Money. Everyone wants it.  Nobody seems to have enough of it, whether you are a billionaire or someone who is struggling to pay your rent or mortgage.  It is an intoxicating drug.  I know.  My eyes get big whenever I think of winning the lottery.  And I have never even played the lottery.   But that […]

Eighty-six or One?

It was the third set of the most intense match I saw at the Minnesota State High School League Girls State Tennis Tournament last week.  The team match was tied 3-3, the deciding match was on the court with the two girls battling like two prize fighters trading weary punches, and everyone in the building […]

Not Everybody Likes Me???

The truth is, not everybody likes me. This is a hard truth for someone who has spent a great deal of his life wanting to be liked. But it is, nonetheless, the truth. And it is essential to know in going forward with any endeavor of importance without being paralyzed. When my daughter, Madeline, now […]

I See It

Summer camps end today.  I could say, “Where does the time go?” but after 36 years of this, I have a pretty good idea. This is what I see that I could not see 36 years ago: I see a Tennis & Life Camps that will thrive long after I am dead.  I do not […]

I Stink

“I stink.” Not words you expect to hear when you come upon a court of little tykes who had been 15 minutes ago having fun and laughing at the games they were playing on court. But, in the shade, sitting cross legged by himself while the chaotic energy of other eight year olds swirled around, […]

I Can’t Control The Rain

It is raining this morning as I write this.  We are indoors with drills. For many years at TLC, we had a saying as a staff about weather.  “Only God and Steve can control the rain…”  Steve Wilkinson, co-founder of TLC, was like Moses parting the Red Sea.  He looked up at the sky and […]


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