Programming Notes: ‘Tension City’ and ‘Badasses’

by Kim on November 16, 2011 · 4 comments

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Despite how much I’ve been writing here, I’ve actually been doing some posts in other places around the Interwebz, which I wanted to take a moment to share.

First up is a review of Jim Lehrer’s book about his time moderating presidential debates, Tension City. I thought this book was a delightfully nerdy and awesome look behind-the-scenes at an event so many people watch but few people understand. Here’s a couple paragraphs to get your interested:

Through the television screen, presidential debates have a sense of gravitas and cool organization about them. But writing from the perspective of the moderator’s hot seat, Lehrer is able to reveal the pre-debate political maneuvering, serious preparation and unexpected snafus that characterize any live, televised political event.

It also helps that Lehrer is charmingly self-deprecating as he reflects on his own prodigious impact on each debate. He’s not afraid to share his pre-debate rituals — including going with his family to buy a new tie before every debate — and admit his own mistakes.

Over at Book Riot last week, I did a post with some suggestions about football reading for skeptics and fanatics. One of the books I mentioned is a more recent release — Badasses by Peter Richmond (a book for fanatics). Here’s what I had to say about that:

My first book suggestion is Badasses: The Legend of Snake, Foo, Dr. Death, and John Madden’s Oakland Raiders by Peter Richmond which just recently came out in paperback (celebrate!). As the delightfully descriptive subtitle suggests, Badasses is a book about a very particular team at a very particular time, and, to a lesser degree, a look at how professional football has changed since the badasses were around.

This book is basically a love letter from Peter Richmond to the 1970s Oakland Raiders, the team of his childhood that he grew up loving unabashedly. If you love a different football team as much as Richmond loves the Raiders, you might find this book a little hard to stomach — he wastes no love on the Raiders’ biggest rivals at the time (the Steelers and the Dolphins, mostly). And there’s no denying that this is very much a book about football and a love for the game. It is a book for fanatics, hands down.

You’ll have to head over to the post for my two suggestions for skeptics! I’ve also had a few other Book Riot posts that I’m especially pleased with:

Oh, and one more programming note. If you’re a person that comes to the site rather than reading it through an RSS feed, you may have noticed the addition of a couple of ads — one near the top and one in the sidebar. I recently joined the LitBreaker ad network, which is group that does advertising for Book Riot and some other well-respected blogs. I don’t think the ads are especially obtrusive and I’ve seen some great books come up as the ads scroll, so I think it’ll be a good addition.

Photo Credit: J.D. Hancock via Flickr

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