I protest too much

Over Time by
Frank Deford
I’m thinking Frank Deford is partly to blame for my weird reading-sports-books behavior
The guy is smart and charming and funny, and
he’s on NPR (talking about sports) every Wednesday morning while I’m cruising
to work, so he’s part of my little world and I’ve become wickedly fond of him.
Even when he’s talking about athletes I’ve never heard of, or
sports I completely don’t care about (we’re talking: football, basketball,
baseball, tennis, soccer, golf… let’s just say: most sports), I’m always all
excited to hear what he has to say. He’s got that kind of talent.   
And guys! He wrote the novel Bliss Remembered, which I adored a couple of years ago.
This guy’s got it going on.

So when his memoir appeared, I was all over that.
And, true to form, he’s once again… smart and charming and funny.
And for all you NPR listeners who know his voice by heart, there’s
the added benefit of being able to hear his voice reading the book to you in
your head.
There’re plenty-o-sports celebrities in the book, and the one who
stands out to me most is Arthur Ashe. It’s refreshing to hear that some people
really are good people, in a world
where so many of the stories we hear are about the disappointments and lies.
(Roger Clemens, we’re looking at you.)
Deford also gives a sense of the life of a sports journalist, and
I love that stuff. It’s a very different work life from what most of us
experience, and it’s fascinating.  
So, yeah. Read this one, and then if you’re just aching for more,
give Robert Lipsyte’s An Accidental Sportswriter a whirl.  
These sportswriters? They can really write.

4 thoughts on “I protest too much

  1. I've listened to Frank Deford and John Feinstein on NPR and have always intended to read some of their books, but never think of it when I go to the library. Thanks for the reminder!

  2. I read his book about his daughter, Alex. Tearjerker does not even begin to cover it.

    Oh, Your Unruliness, You are so right about sportswriters. I was reading that guy on Yahoo who was covering the Sandusky trial, and although he can be accused of sometimes being a little too writerly ("Who does he think he is? Hemingway?" my son snorted) I found his coverage of the trial both crisp and heartrending. Because that's what they do.

  3. Bybee — I suspect I'd have a crying jag of epic proportions if I read the book about his daughter.

    Sportswriters: truly underrated! (scuttling over to Yahoo to read that guy you mentioned)

    And thanks for the new handle. I'll be going by "Your Unruliness" from this day forward.

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