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Michael Silver -- I just don't get it...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by SuperflySnuka, Aug 28, 2007.

  1. OK, so maybe I'm old school, but I was always, always under the impression that the term "I" only belongs in a first-person column. Jim Murray excelled at using "I," because so many of his columns were about, well, him.

    But this drove me nuts...

    Michael Silver's story about Edge James started off very well. I enjoyed the first 13 or so graphs...and then...

    A few weeks after James related this conversation to me in the spring, I asked a longtime scout whether he thought the halfback, who turned 29 earlier this month, had lost something.
    "I was sure he had," the scout replied, "but I went back and watched a bunch of the film, and you know what? He actually ran pretty well. There was just nowhere to go."

    WHY NOT JUST:
    A few weeks after James related the conversation, a longtime scout said he realized James hadn't lost too much.
    "xxxx"

    THEN LATER...

    "All those years without a fullback, I didn't realize what I was missing," James said early Sunday as we stood near the bar at a bustling Phoenix nightclub. He was sipping a small glass of Patron and Rosie's Lime Juice while surrounded by the usual assemblage of lovely ladies. "Before, if someone whiffed, I had to deal with the guy immediately. Now that's the
    fullback's job."

    WHO THE HELL CARES WHAT HE'S DRINKING?!? That just reeks of a douchebag writer cozying up to an athlete...

    eww
     
  2. Chi City 81

    Chi City 81 Guest

    I completely can't read the stuff in yellow.
     
  3. imjustagirl2

    imjustagirl2 New Member

    Highlight it. That's what I did.

    Sometimes, details like that are telling. I'm not sure this is one of them, but just telling what someone's drinking is not, in itself, a bad thing.
     
  4. hockeybeat

    hockeybeat Guest

    I kind of like the small details. It puts the reader at the scene and humanizes the subject.
     
  5. I completely agree, if there's more scene-setting and if it leads to something further. In "Frank Sinatra Has a Cold," my pick for the premier feature of all time, Talese describes EVERYTHING, and you understand that everything matters. What Sinatra drank said something about him, how he stood said something about him, how he talked to his right-hand man said something.

    This says absolutely nothing.
     
  6. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Yeah, the drink thing is interesting. Some guys are Schlitz, some are shot-and-a-beer, some are...whatever the heck Edge was drinking. I know Patron but don't know Rosie's Lime Juice, which perhaps means I need to get out more.

    So there, Silver showed me something.
     
  7. Chi City 81

    Chi City 81 Guest

    Next time you're out, take a shot of Bailey's, chase it with the lime juice and swish the combination around in your mouth. Good stuff.
     
  8. I guess I'm just in the minority.

    To me, it's one thing to describe a setting. Was Edge dancing? Was he interacting with the "lovely ladies" (another douchy comment)? Was he talking aggressively or pensively? How long had they been there?

    It just irked me that it was so alone, tossed in the middle of the story with almost no other detail...
     
  9. You, Doc, are a royal jerk for suggesting that. On my 21st birthday, I got a cement mixer, not knowing what the hell it was. I bowed to the porcelain throne for 20 minutes afterwards...

    Not that I haven't bought them for fellow friends on their 21st...
     
  10. Chi City 81

    Chi City 81 Guest

    Thanks for fucking that up, Snuka. :D
     
  11. Sorry, Doc, ain't gonna let that happen. I don't want others -- besides my friends -- to feel my pain..

    man, oh, man
     
  12. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Active Member

    I'm more sick of the "I asked" and the "we stood" parts. Details of the drink are fine. Why not?

    But this lame way of inserting himself -- or as I guess guys like Silver would prefer it, HIMSELF (since he's a big deal) -- into the article is horrible. Seems like an affront to every great sportswriter I've read. Sure, there are times when it's OK, even helpful, to show the subject engaged in some activity or conversation with the writer himself (Then Bonds, with nary a wink, said, "Joe W, why do all your media colleagues hate me?" At which point I assured him...).

    But the "I asked" as if that's different from any other swinging dick asking the question of the scout, that's pure ego trip. And frankly, so is the "we" at the bar, since describing the scene in detail makes it pretty clear that the writer was present.

    But then, as a great parody of the old Larry King USA Today column once wrote:

    ``So Pope John Paul II says to me, `Larry, I really like ...' "
     
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