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Showing posts from March, 2022

FIELD NOTES: War on ice

On February 15, 1978, Leon Spinks shocked the sports world, beating defending heavyweight boxing champion Mohammed Ali in a nationally-televised fight. Although Ali was entering the twilight of his career and Spinks had won the gold medal at the 1976 Olympics, no one gave the young fighter much of a chance against the man considered "The Greatest." Most saw it as a warm-up fight for Ali as he prepared to take on the top-ranked contender, Ken Norton. So, it was perhaps a little surprising that more than one-third (34.4 TV rating) of Americans tuned in to CBS to watch the contest. Our household was one of those, even though none of us was a huge boxing fan. Just a few days earlier, though, my whole family, along with millions of others in the Midwest, had spent nearly a week trapped in our house without electricity due to the Blizzard of '78; millions suffering from a bad case of cabin fever and desperately needing the distraction.   In the early days of the COVID pandemic

FIELD NOTES: Always proofreed your work

On Sunday, the Yale Bulldogs defeated the Princeton Tigers to win the Ivy League basketball tournament and secure their berth in the “Big Dance.” The team proudly donned their brand new Ivy League Champions T-shirts, cut down the nets and posed for media photos. There was only one teensy problem; the shirts were misprinted, badly misprinted. Instead of Yale Bulldogs, they touted the champion Yale Bulldgods. You might say it’s a little bit of an embarrassment for one of the most prestigious academic institutions in the country to misspell its nickname, but of course, the school had nothing to do with the mistake. I am guessing some quick print shop got the late-night order at the end of the semifinal round and was tasked with producing a couple of dozen champions shirts for both Princeton and Yale. It’s surprising that such an obvious error could slip through, but I know from personal experience it’s tough to proofread your own work because you KNOW what you meant to say.   The Yale gaf

FIELD NOTES: Do you believe in your own lies?

If you have never heard the name Anna Delvey, congratulations. Save yourself the trouble and stop reading now. Walk the dog. Clean the house. Wash the car. Do something productive. But under no circumstances allow yourself to get caught up in the tangled knot of lies, deceit, and narcissism I am about to lay down.   Until a week ago, I had no idea who Anna Delvey was or what her story was about. Then I saw the banner advertising a new series on Netflix, “Inventing Anna.” The synopsis – a journalist chases down the story of Anna Delvey, who convinced New York’s elite she was a German heiress – did not interest me all that much. But it starred Julia Garner, and I was a little curious to see how she would handle a role 180 degrees from her iconic Ruth Langmore character on “Ozark.” Ten hours of my life later, I know more (and less) about Anna Delvey than I ever cared to.   Well written and produced, the nine-episode limited series is like a roller coaster ride, as a continuous string of n