Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That – Karolinagate

Let me preface this by saying that, if you’re a tennis fan, you’re already aware of the fact that Caroline Wozniacki is painfully unfunny.

In response to being called boring by some members of the media at the 2011 Australian Open, Karolina attempted to turn the tables on them. She felt like they always asked her the same questions, so she gave them all the answers. All at once. That same year, at the same event, she spun a yarn that a scrape on her knee was the result of a fight with a kangaroo.

She crashes her fellow player’s press conferences. Here, she trolls neighbor and friend Novak Djokovic.

I mean, she can’t even pop a balloon properly for goodness sake!

Oh, and she got some flack for imitating Nadal’s cramps that one time.

You should get it by now. Humor is not her strong suit. But bless her heart, she tries.

In the ‘Fed and Friends’ exhibition tour over the weekend in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Wozniacki imitated Serena Williams by stuffing her bra and skirt, strutting around the court. The act seemed to amuse the crowd for the most part, even eliciting a chuckle from Federer himself. For the record, Serena was present in the crowd and was not bothered in the slightest.

Karolina has done the Serena bit before; it first made an appearance last season in an exhibition in Bratislava against Dominika Cibulkova.

Days later, it appeared in the mainstream media. And by god, we were not ready for it.  It started with The Huffington Post, who posed the question: “Serena Williams Impersonation: Is Caroline Wozniacki’s Imitation Of The Tennis Star Racist?” Jezebel, a celebrity gossip site, ran the story with the headline: “Dumb White Tennis Player Thinks It’s a Great Idea to Mock Serena Williams’ Body.” And it didn’t get better from there.

HAHAHAHA. That is so funn — wait, why aren’t you laughing? OH, probably because it’s not funny and maybe even a little bit racist. Well, I guess that makes sense….While the whole “she’s just jealous” excuse is tired and overused, throw in a dash of racism and it might apply here. People who look like Wozniacki (white, blonde, thin) aren’t exactly used to losing, but then here comes Serena Williams (black, curvy and strong) and all of that — at least on the tennis court — starts to change. Fucked up as it is, it makes sense that they would make fun of her body; turning her into a caricature or a joke will make it easier to stomach all the times she wipes the floor with them. (Jezebel)

The media firestorm on Tuesday culminated with this discussion on The View, where Elisabeth Hasselbeck was the only one speaking any sort of sense. God help us.

The fact that the mainstream media has picked this up, taken this non-story and put a racial spin, of all things, on it is mind-blogging to me. First, Serena and Wozniacki are FRIENDS. Richard Williams once said that Wozniacki is like an adopted daughter to him, and that she was one of the only players who came to visit Serena when she was hospitalized with a pulmonary embolism in 2011.

In the exhibition with Cibulkova I previously mentioned, Wozniacki, listed at 5’11”, got on her knees and rallied with Cibulkova, listed at 5’3″ and one of the shortest players in the WTA top 100. Cibulkova and the crowd were both amused. Does that mean others of Cibulkova’s stature should be offended by this? No. Both impersonations are direct reflections of her friendly relationship with Serena and Cibulkova and nothing more.

Secondly, it’s not like Wozniacki is the first to do imitations of other players nor is Serena, contrary to Goldberg’s clueless remarks, the only player that has ever been imitated. Before Djokovic’s transformation into a multiple-Grand Slam champion, he was known for his impersonations.

Were Roddick or Djokovic called out for these? Nope.

Wozniacki’s Facebook and Twitter page has been filled with some of the most vile and disgusting comments I have ever seen. I’m not going to reprint them here, but I’ll link this example. See for yourself.

I don’t have all the answers, but let’s not act that Karolina is reinventing the wheel here. Is the entire ‘players impersonating players’ act stale? Of course it is. For the record, I don’t find any impersonations funny, regardless of the portrayer or the portrayed. But to take something as trivial as this and label it racist, trivializes the issue of racism and how it is a very present reality in parts of the world we live in. Furthermore, isn’t it just the slightest bit racist to believe that the imitation itself is racist because Serena is black?

Just a thought.

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2 thoughts on “Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That – Karolinagate”

  1. I agree with the all points you made and from an entirely extrinsic point of view I can understand why some people may take offence to the impersonation, [partly thanks to a Wikipedia copy and paste job by a certain raging internet poster. However that in itself does not warrant the plethora of angry uninformed keyboard warriors who seem to have taken it upon themselves to recite irrelevant history to make their points. The aforementioned is largely due to the fact that any hint of context seems to have been abandoned by those commenting on the matter, as have been hard facts. Putting aside the issue of them being friends, It’s perhaps appropriate to mention, in layman’s terms no less, that culturally, curvaceous behinds and chestal areas are quite popular in Brazil and it is possible that this may have been a factor in Wozniacki undertaking, what can now only be described as an incredibly ill advised venture. Also simply stuffing things down your dress doesn’t always equate to ‘mocking’ a body shape, it could be something a lot more innocent , or just plain brainless. Most probably the latter on Wozniacki’s part but still.

    Also, just fyi to some of those ranting including the ever irritating Miss Goldberg, Wozniacki has beaten Serena already so it’s not something she ‘needs to do before imitating her’. Also, Denmark is not in Eastern Europe, just thought I’d point that out for some of our lesser geographically literate friends who are perhaps a tad too keen to attach the ‘Eastern Europeans are racist!!!’ label to anyone they find disagreeable. Also, Sherri Shepard commenting on people perpetuating negative racial stereotypes when she’s made a career out of it. Priceless.

    The response has been entirely disproportional and has once again provided an insight into how easily the public can be duped by the press, though I’m more inclined towards assigning individual responsibility as that makes it easier for me directly label those making inflammatory comments to be imbeciles of the highest order. I fully expect all exhos to be dishwasher levels of fun now as players are going to be far too afraid to do anything other than just stand there hit the ball. What next? Someone imitating a grunt is accused of being racist against Serena because of some racial connotation whipped out of thin air by a lazy journalist? For shame!

  2. I am a Caro fan but I also consider her jokes to be a bit awkward. If you are mocking someone’s appearance it’s always kind of playing with fire.

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