Since football is in the air, I thought to recall the book Instant Reply which I read when I was 13. I have never been a football fan and just found out two minutes ago that that the Green Bay Packers are contesting the Super Bowl this year when my husband called me upstairs to view the half-time show. I was however an avid baseball and hockey fan and loved (and still love) to read biographies and autobiographies.
Around this time I was a weekly volunteer at the local library and I began to read my way through the biography section, which included, Fire Wagon Hockey:The Story of the Montreal Canadiens, biographies of Sandy Koufax, Roger Crozier and Bobby Hull, and Ball Four a controversial book which came to be “considered one of the most important sports books ever written.” according to Wikipedia. Other bios I remember reading then were of Ghandi, Martin Luther, Madame Curie, Dame Margot Fonteyn, Louis Pasteur & Joan of Arc. This reading predilection fits with my Meyers-Briggs, people-person personality type.
Here is a description of Instant Replay from Amazon.com
“In 1967, when Jerry Kramer was a thirty-one-year-old Green Bay Packers offensive lineman, in his tenth year with the team, he decided to keep a diary of the season. “Perhaps, by setting down my daily thoughts and observations,” he wrote, “I’ll be able to understand precisely what it is that draws me back to professional football.” Little did Kramer know that the 1967 season would be one of the most remarkable in the history of pro football, culminating with the legendary championship game against Dallas now known as the “Ice Bowl,” in which Kramer would play a central role . Washington Post’s Jonathan Yardley, calls it “to this day, the best inside account of pro football, indeed the best book ever written about that sport and that league.”
This groundbreaking look inside the world of professional football is one of the first books ever to take readers into the locker room and reveal the inner workings of a professional sports franchise. He also offers a rare and insightful view of the team’s storied leader, Coach Vince Lombardi.
Bringing the book back into print for the first time in more than a decade, this new edition of Instant Replay retains the classic look of the original and includes a foreword by Jonathan Yardley and additional rarely seen photos from the celebrated “Lombardi era.”
Gee, this sounds compelling (well for a sports book at least) maybe I should reread and perhaps this is a good Valentine’s gift for a football fan? As for runner biographies, I would recommend Running with the Legends: Training and Racing Insights from 21 Great Runners by Michael Sandrock, the book is as described and will not disappoint. Complete with sample training schedules, the most important insight gained will be that there is no formula. This panorama of athletic experience will convince you that, once you have a solid understanding of the basic physiology of training, trusting your own instincts, is what it is all about. Your own way, also involves the self-knowledge to determine psychological fit with workout types. More generally applied, self-knowledge will also enable you to determine what sport or fitness activity suits your physiological and psychological profile.
As for my love of biographies, these days I’m more likely to be reading about writers and political figures although I did enjoy Lance Armstrong’s, Every Second Counts a few years ago. At the moment I’m reading a short biography of Lord Byron written by Edna O’Brien. More out of interest in the biographer, than the subject. Edna O’Brien has written an excellent biography of James Joyce which both my husband and I read after a trip to Ireland.
A couple of all-time favourites are Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela and Maggie Siggon’s, Louis Riel, A Life of Revolution.
“There is properly no history; only biography” Ralph Waldo Emerson
February 7, 2011 at 4:19 pm
I happen to be married to a huge football fan so perhaps I will take your Valentines gift advice and purchase Instant Replay!
February 7, 2011 at 4:45 pm
I guess you are not worried that he might read this blog 🙂