TRUE BELIEVERS: The Tragic Inner Life of Sports Fans

Joe Queenan, Author . Holt $23 (256p) ISBN 978-0-8050-6979-2

Queenan's latest should be required reading not just for the folks of the sardonic subtitle but also for their wives, girlfriends and sports-phobic pals. The humorist spotlights something that's as peculiar as it is pedestrian: the schlub who roots for sorry teams. Why do some of us back losers, Queenan (Balsamic Dreams) asks, and why defend this foolishness so passionately? The recovering Philadelphia fan (of all the city's teams) would know. He groups admirers into categories—"Fans Who Love Too Much," "Fans Who Misbehave," etc.—and grounds his quips in droll situations such as his visit to a therapist who has the nerve to say the fate of the rain forest is graver than the fate of the 76ers. Queenan doesn't limit his premise to one club or sport, either; he covers everything from the Boston Red Sox to the "cataleptic" Wizards in Washington. Everywhere, stubborn followers like him hope for a turnaround in the standings. His enthusiasts remember times, usually before they were born, when "we" pulled out some miracle win. Queenan tallies the time he has spent watching sports and figures those years were not truly wasted: "It is my belief," he says, "that without sports, the average man would have no emotional life whatsoever." In this hilarious and strangely erudite book, Queenan doesn't overwrite his subject—for a diehard fan knows what to do when the buzzer sounds: go home. (June)

Reviewed on: 04/28/2003
Release date: 06/01/2003
Genre: Nonfiction
Analog Audio Cassette - 240 pages - 978-1-55927-896-6
Paperback - 236 pages - 978-0-312-42321-6
Compact Disc - 240 pages - 978-1-55927-895-9
Open Ebook - 256 pages - 978-1-4299-3273-8
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