Most people who know me, know I don’t really care about sports. When I left for college and friends said I would be a “Gopher,” I have to confess that initially I really had no idea what they were talking about. Recently when my daughter’s new college team played the Badgers I forgot to even check to see the outcome until a couple days later. And I really can’t relate to wearing green and gold or cheese on my head.
All that said, one of my “heroes” is a sports commentator. Maybe you have heard of him. His name is Frank Deford and he tells great sports “stories” once a week on NPR. Now I like him because he often tells how sports connects to life, or explains something about sports which makes others’ obsessions more palatable. Often I find myself returning to the on-line written text because I liked a story so much and want to reread it or accurately repeat it to a friend. Sometimes I missed the beginning or the end and want to get the story in its entirety. The strange thing is that when I read the story in the quiet of my office, I can hear his voice, and the cadence of his words, and oddly it is comforting. I can’t explain it.
If you haven’t heard his work, here are a few of my recent favorites you can read or listen to NPR Sweetness and Light on-line:
Stories that explain whats going on in the news for a sports Luddite:
The NFL’s Lesson: There’s No Replacing Good Refs
Joe Paterno’s Legacy: Protect Players At All Costs
Mind Games: Football And Head Injuries
Language (which I love) and sports:
RG3: A Game Changer For ‘Thirds’ Everywhere
The Language Of Baseball: In Is Out And Foul Is Fair
So the thing I like about my blog, is that when I want to share about someone, some thing or some idea. I do a little surfing around and learn more than I knew before. Tonight I learned that Frank Deford has written 16 books and was named Sportswriter of the Year six times, and was twice voted Magazine Writer of the Year by the Washington Journalism Review. Now I understand why he’ my hero – it isn’t the topic – its his style.
Have you read his books? What would you recommend?
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