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Selena Roberts column on Kaleb Eulls - perfect

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Dave Kindred, Sep 11, 2009.

  1. Dave Kindred

    Dave Kindred Member

    I can't put up a link because it's not on SI's site for some reason. I just read it in the magazine and it's as good as you can do in 800 words. Story, clarity, style, viewpoint. Better only if the last two sentences traded places.
  2. broadway joe

    broadway joe Guest

    The link:

  3. DirtyDeeds

    DirtyDeeds Guest

    Haven't been a fan of her work in SI for the most part, but that is damn good.
    Why do you think the last two sentences should trade places? So it ends on a more positive note? I think this way fits the tone of the story better. Just curious about your reason.
  4. LWillhite

    LWillhite Member

    It's funny Dave critiques this way. I read it as well and thought it was excellent, but also felt a bit of a letdown that it didn't end with one more great sentence. I didn't think to dissect it at the time, but I think Dave's correct here. What could be better than the children's hand-scrawled gratitude?
  5. Dave Kindred

    Dave Kindred Member

    Yes, end it positively because it is a positive story -- Eulls's heroism is the story, the rest is by-product, hype that doesn't deserve to be the last image in the reader's mind....I also didn't like "getaway" car, as if it's his choice to flee the scene -- I'd have searched for a better way to frame that scene, maybe an allusion to someone living in a bubble, a movie star, rock star, president, someone taken for the moment from the world he prefers -- and "getaway" makes him sound like a criminal rather than a hero...
  6. DirtyDeeds

    DirtyDeeds Guest

    Hmmm. I definitely see your point, and the "getaway car" jumped out at me too. But after going back and skimming it again, I think the story here is the pressure the heroic act put on Eulls, so I think this ending is in line with that.
  7. shockey

    shockey Active Member

    agreed. as if the hero is being punished with attention he never sought and seeks to escape.

    well done, selena.

    the piece isn't about the heroic act. it's about the price the hero has paid.
  8. Dave Kindred

    Dave Kindred Member

    I still would trade the last two sentences.
    And I would include, on the list of media parachuting in to Yazoo City, my ownself.
  9. CentralIllinoisan

    CentralIllinoisan Active Member

    Agree with this. Her piece is about the pressure the hero endures for being nothing more than a hero. This was well-written and well-framed.

    Had it been about the heroic act (which this magazine assumes most already know), then a positive finish would have better fit. Otherwise, I like the tone of this ending.
  10. brettwatson

    brettwatson Active Member

    Never really enjoyed her columns but this one's a keeper. If she can pen a few more like this, I might change my opinion of her.

    Still, I wonder what she's doing writing for the back page, even if only occasionally, when they've got someone 10 times more talented on the payroll now in Joe Posnanski.
  11. FreddiePatek

    FreddiePatek Active Member

    I think everyone who says that last line fits best are correct. This is definitely more of a "second day" approach. Had it been about the act and a statement about teen heroism, definitely the cards would have been the proper ending.
  12. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Well-Known Member

    Doubt Joe Pos is getting 10 times more in payroll, though.
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