Monday, August 16, 2010

Federer gets his William Tell on, but IS IT REAL?

My good friend, former roommate, and #1 favorite German, Henrik, sent me this link just now, with the subject: "one question: is it real?" The video shows Roger Federer hitting a bottle off of someone's head with a tennis ball, William Tell style.

Roger is looking damn good in one hell of a suit, and it appears as if a photo shoot is wrapping up. He's talking to one of the crew members, and tells him to balance a bottle on his head. Fed then goes approx. 20 feet away, and hits a serve right at the guy, hitting the bottle and sending it flying. The camera is moving when he does it, so it's not conclusive. Then, he does it AGAIN. This time the camera is locked in place. You see him hit it, and again the bottle goes flying.

I've watched this video 7 times. While every skeptic fiber in my being (and there are a lot) wants to say that it is fake, I've come to the conclusion that IT IS REAL. Which is ridiculous. I'll take you through my thought process.

A true testament to how law school has changed me, my first thought was that he would never do something like this because of liability concerns. But the person holding the bottle seemed to be a totally consenting party accepting the risk. Plus, I am sure he wasn't hitting full speed. I doubt a miss-hit could do more than a bruise.

My second doubt was about the camera-work. But while the first shot is questionable at best, the second shot has the camera perfectly set where you can see Federer and the bottle-man. It would certainly be possible to fake this, but also possible that its real.

I think the thing that eventually swayed me to real was that it was Roger. If this was Novak Djokovic, or Andy Roddick, there would be no question in my mind that this was fake. Those guys are known for joking around and would be the type to pull something like this (Roddick did one years ago that showed him serving a ball that got lodged in a clay court). But Roger is different. Save the 2009 US Open final, he oozes class in everything he does, both on and off the court. While he is a warm personality, I just cannot believe he is the type that would make somethine like this.

I have been much more confident about many more things. There's a good chance this is fake, BUT I'm gonna go ahead and join the side of believers and say that this is REAL. Feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts.

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