Books of 2009– #1

Yes, I’m continuing the list theme. I am trying to challenge myself to read 50 books in 2009. Which would also be a good excuse for 50 blog posts, and thus seemed to be killing two birds with one stone.

1. Boys Will Be Boys- Jeff Pearlman

Pearlman’s book is the story of the 1990s Dallas Cowboys. I bought the book (ok, I asked for the book for Christmas) on the promise of new and unheard stories of bizarre antisocial behavior. Pearlman delivered. He begins the book with All-Pro Wide Receiver Michael Irvin stabbing a teammate in the neck with barber scissors. Yes, you read that right. He also details Defensive End Charles Haley’s schitzophrentic behavior, including but not limited to, trying to beat up then-teammate Steve Young and then-coach George Seifert, urinating into then-teammate Tim Harris’s vehicle, and most amazingly, (how to say this in a PG rated blog), pleasuring himself while discussing the merits of teammates’ wives in team meetings.

In between, there was a lot of football. The book comes off as a cautionary tale on two levels: 1) NFL players, by and large, are horrible people and 2) It’s impossible to build a dynasty due to individual egos. The first point, while the specifics are shocking, was not a great surprise, and the second point is really what makes this book worthwhile, shock value aside. I enjoyed it very much, and was surprised at what a quick read it was. I’m not saying the book is a classic, but it’s a pleasurable read, and an interesting cautionary tale.



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2 Responses to “Books of 2009– #1”

  1. Ricky Says:

    Pearlman’s a pretty good writer. I read his Barry Bonds biography, and would recommend it. I’ve also skimmed the book he wrote about the ’86 Mets. There’s a story in there of Kevin Mitchell slashing his girlfriend’s cat’s throat in front of her and a horrified Dwight Gooden. At least that’s what Gooden claims in the book. All things considered I’d still rather hang out with Kevin Mitchell than Charles Haley.

  2. eljoe1235 Says:

    Maybe Pearlman can dispense with sports writing and just write books about people doing bizarre and terrible things behaviorally speaking. I think I’d buy it. I would at least read a page or two every time I went to Barnes and Noble.

    While I had never heard this Kevin Mitchell story, the other one about him I’d heard, which was not quite as bizarre, but still pretty odd, was that when he got a cold, he would dip his hand into a jar of Vicks Vapor Rub, grab a handful, and then stick his hand down his own throat.


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