Serena Williams played tennis in a tutu at the US Open while millions of people watched. Twice. And yet, she's not the person looking foolish

If you haven't followed the controversy, you can read about it here. The short version is that Serena Williams--one of the world's premier athletes--and easily the greatest of all time (GOAT)--competed wearing an outfit that was modest, comfortable, and fashionable (an achievement in its own right).

And then that outfit was banned.

Serena's response? This tutu. And in case that didn't do the trick, how about another tutu--enlisting the help of infamous Louis Vuitton designer, Virgil Abloh.

It's unclear how the original outfit went "too far," or what motivated French Tennis Federation president Bernard Giudicelli to nix the outfit from future French Opens--people were not happy, to say the least--and rightfully so. Many also felt that the controversy of this series of events outweighs its newsworthiness.

In the end, Serena's going in the history books in all her fashionable glory, not just in the "acceptable" outfits.

But there's something about this story that stands out:

It's an epic statement--delivered completely wordlessly. 

Serena could've tweeted about it, or given a speech, or made any number of other attempts to undermine Guidicelli's questionable stance (which wouldn't have been difficult). But unfortunately, no matter what you say as a public figure, someone will find a way to twist it, spin it, or remove the context, like some kind of Bop-It game with all the frustration and none of the fun (just kidding, those were never fun).

But how do you make a statement without staying silent? There's more than one way, for sure, but one thing is very clear:

Serena's response was expressive, powerful, and ironic. Now brace yourself for the cliche--do actions speak louder than words?

Either way, a picture is worth a thousand of them, so Serena's two tutu'd outings must be worth an entire dissertation on the effectiveness of sending a message without words. 

Game. Set. Match. Tutu.

Published on: Aug 30, 2018
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