An intriguing assortment of work from an athlete with a lot on his mind.

BEAUTIFULLY UNIQUE SPARKLEPONIES

ON MYTHS, MORONS, FREE SPEECH, FOOTBALL, AND ASSORTED ABSURDITIES

NFL punter Kluwe riffs on everything from social justice to dinosaur obsessions in a lively collection of stories, essays, letters and poems.

Those who’ve never watched Kluwe attempt to boot his team out of trouble on fourth and long are still probably familiar with his much-talked-about support of same-sex marriage. Marriage equality, however, is just a thin slice of what the avid video gamer, rock-’n’-roll bassist and Kurt Vonnegut devotee has percolating inside his contemplative mind. Much of it, like when he imagines a “sportsball” showdown between the “Lustful Cockmonsters” and the “Beautifully Unique Sparkleponies,” has comedic value. Kluwe can’t help but dispatch a few politicians and other assorted close-minded pontificators as “douchebags,” but he spends a lot more time pondering other things, like paradoxical time traveling and mankind’s penchant for self-annihilation. In mixing the profane with the prophetic while using a variety of literary devices, the author succeeds at being both entertaining and enlightening. Haters can forget trying to paint Kluwe as some kind of loudmouth who doesn’t spend enough time thinking about his day job. At least two entries—one painstakingly detailing the intricate process of successfully punting a football downfield while a phalanx of world-class juggernauts hurl their cinder-block bodies at him and another creatively cataloging the variety of painful injuries he has sustained over his long football career—clearly attest to his dedication to gridiron greatness. Football concerns Kluwe, but so do a lot of other things—including being a good parent. “Never be ashamed of who you are. I’m a nerd who plays football,” he cheerfully advises his kids. The advice is empowering and displays the author’s overarching belief in empathy and reason.

An intriguing assortment of work from an athlete with a lot on his mind.

Pub Date: June 25, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-316-23677-5

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: May 26, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2013

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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