Wednesday, September 14, 2005


Another spotty entry from me. Gina & Krista are spotlighting children's book in a long essay in their regular round-robin (Friday) and we're supposed to note our favorite children's book.

Here's what I shared with The Third Estate Sunday Review:

Cedric: My favorite growing up was a little book called The Harlem Globetrotters and Basketball's Funniest Game. A nephew has the book now and we pass it around because it's an easy book and because it features African-Americans. Also, a kid who might not read something else, if he or she likes sports, will usually pick it up. Growing up, we all fought over this book. I don't just mean when we were little. But my sister had it before me, okay? It was passed down to her and then it was my turn. When I was reading bigger books, she tried to claim it back and kept saying she had only "loaned it" to me. It's funny now, but there were some intense fights over this book. I called my brother to find out the credits for it and it's by Clare and Frank Gault and illustrated by Charles McGill. It's probably not a great book, I'm sure it isn't. But it's one that's held the interest in my family.

Jim: My favorite book was a sports book too and is far less weighty than your choice. But it's by the same authors and I didn't know that. Clare and Frank Gault. It was my dad's book so it was also passed on.

Cedric: Really?

Jim: Yeah. Dick Ericson did the illustrations though. It's called How to Be a Good Baseball Player. My dad got it when he was nine-years-old. I don't remember this, but my mom says he read it to me over and over even when I was in the crib. Baseball's real big with my dad. He coached my little league team. Ty, Jess and Ava tease me about moving in with Dona over at her place with Ava but if they see the book there, they'll know I've moved because I wouldn't live anywhere without that book. What I can remember is Dad going over this book with me all the time when I was in elementary school. As summer approached, he'd pull out the book and we'd read it and look at the pictures. It's really an instructional book and I'm probably choosing it more for memories than the book itself but here's a quote:
How do you throw a fast ball? One way is to grip the baseball with two fingers
across the seams. Or you can grip the ball using two fingers along the seams. And
some pitchers like to use only one finger across the seams.

I'll note two more things quickly. Mike interviewed me over at his site Mikey Likes It! so if you're curious, you can read that there. Also be sure to check out C.I.'s "NYT: Todd S. Purdum 'cupping' the story" which will make you laugh hard. rel="tag">The Common Ills

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