Making My Mark as a Man of Mediocrity; Pretty Much from the Moment I Came into the World Looking like a Miniature Winston Churchill (Smoking a Big Cigar, Apparently) Mum Saw Me Destined for Greatness. Medicine? Law? Politics?

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Byline: TUESDAY With Damian Bathersby

MY mum was always sure I was going to do great things.

Pretty much from the moment I came into the world looking just like a miniature Winston Churchill (smoking a big cigar, apparently) she saw me destined for greatness.

Medicine? Law? Politics?

She really didn't care because I was her first-born and she believed I was special.

About 12 months later, when it was clear my only skills were staring blankly at the ceiling and making a dull "oooohhh" sound, she admitted defeat and started thinking of a sporting career.

She was a tennis fan so I was steered in that direction while she focused on producing a brain surgeon or Supreme Court judge from amongst the next six Bathersby siblings.

And if it hadn't been for a complete lack of natural ability and any passion whatsoever, I could have been a champion.

As it was, I peaked in Grade 7 when St Joseph's Primary kicked the butts of the local state school tennis team one Friday afternoon.

I still get goose bumps just thinking about it.

And then, for no apparent reason, I became mediocre.

My mum threw her hands in the air and said if I wanted to waste my talent playing football and other un-gentlemanly sports, then so be it. Thus ended my dreams of becoming a sporting champion.

I was reminded of my mediocrity last week when we went to the tennis in Brisbane.

I'll be honest with you, we decided to go not because we have a deep love of the sport but because it was something we'd never done before.

And they make it so darn easy.

Buy your tickets on the internet, jump on a train at Landsborough, change trains at Roma Street and before you know it you're lining up to get into Pat Rafter Arena.

The problem with my wife and I is that we really shouldn't be let out unsupervised.

We're fine as long as someone else is steering the ship but leave us to our own devices and we can get into all sorts of trouble. …