By Annie Kinnett Nichols

Sometimes a girl needs to go to extreme measures to get the guy, and that’s why I went to Susan Sarandon’s ping pong palace, SPIN New York, over the weekend. Sarandon is in Atlanta shooting “Robin Hood” with Kevin Kline, and I’m wishin’ and hopin’ and prayin’ that she’ll play Grant Henry, owner of Sister Louisa’s Church of the Living Room and Ping Pong Emporium. I want to see her beat the smirk off Grant’s face.

I’ve also learned her partner at SPIN, Jonathon Bricklin, is in town and I would like to extend the contest to him as well. I hear he’s amazing at the game, and I’d love to see Grant lose at ping pong to him as well. So, back to my adventure. Searching for ways to improve my game, I sought out SPIN and was happy to learn a few tips on how to win. If you go to New York, you’ve got to drop into SPIN in the Flat Iron District. It’s open all day and late into the night so you have no excuse not to play. I went at 3 p.m. on Saturday afternoon  and was not disappointed.

It’s a completely mixed crowd of players and people. There are ball boys that pick up the non-stop flying ping pong balls. There are movable mini bleachers for the big games, lounge chairs and couches. There’s sports on TV screens as well as some old movies and cartoons. The place is friendly and cheerful, and the staff is friendly. I must give a shout out to Anna, who was very sweet and let me play with some regulars.

There were all kind of players: groups, girls, guys and the hard core. I met Edmund Suen from Hong Kong, and he was willing to school me while I played his friend, Emmanouil Tsaposis, from Greece (that’s Edmund and me in the picture). I learned many secrets that I can’t repeat because I know Grant will read this, but let’s just say I am now ready, willing and able to beat Mr. Henry. I’d also like to play with Ms. Sarandon and Mr. Bricklin. Everyone I play with,  I learn something new and I’m sure they’ve got a few tricks of their own they could show me.

For more about SPIN, visit newyork.spingalactic.com.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.

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