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Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

The Lonely Bull

In sixth grade I played football in rural Ash Creek, Arizona. My family had just moved there from a suburb of Phoenix, and my only prior experience with football had been when my dad would toss one around with my two younger brothers and me, drilling me in the chest with hard passes.

By Jerry D. Mathes II April 2012
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Meat

My friend Tommy Crotty, who was a terrific basketball player in New York and went on to play college ball and be a cheerful husband and excellent dad before the idiot who just died in Abbottabad murdered him and thousands of people on September Eleventh, used to call every big guy he ever played with Meat.

By Brian Doyle March 2012
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Bruised

I wander off the basketball court, the pain rising and crinkling into stars. There are bits of garbled conversation, my own heaving breath. No blood that I can feel — but space, I need space, to be away from other bodies, to be alone in my own blood-heavy, throbbing body.

By Joe Wilkins January 2012
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

The Hawk

Recently a man took up residence on my town’s football field, sleeping in a small tent in the northwestern corner, near the copse of cedars. He had been a terrific football player some years ago for our high school, and then had played in college, and then a couple of years in the nether reaches of the professional ranks, where a man might get paid a hundred bucks a game plus bonuses for touchdowns and sacks.

By Brian Doyle February 2011
Fiction

The 100-To-1 Club

The sun has never felt as good as it does when I finally step out of that jailhouse and into a beautiful Friday morning, the air smelling a little like jasmine, a little like the ocean; happy weekend smiles on all the faces in the windows of a passing bus; and the mountains sitting right there, like they sometimes do, looking close enough to touch.

By Richard Lange March 2010
Fiction

The Last Thing I Heard

Everybody has a father somewhere, and mine is at the Sandia Indian Bingo Palace in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Every weekend he sits at the poker table in his cowhide boots, brushpopper shirt, and wide-brimmed felt hat, tapping cigarette ash into a Coke can and saying things like “Hell, yes, I’m in” and “Tell him he’s called” and “Goddamn! I need a queen.”

By Theron Hopkins February 2010
Photography

The Game

Football is arguably the country’s most popular spectator sport, producing highly paid professionals, luxurious stadiums, and college bowl games. But there are still places in the U.S. where football is reminiscent of another time.

By Morgan Tyree July 2009
Fiction

The Boy Behind The Tree

My father and I were on the third tee at Wildwood Golf Course when a boy in a red golf shirt stepped from behind an oak tree next to the ball washer. “Mind if I join you?” he asked.

By Mark Brazaitis April 2008
Readers Write

Guns

The “racetrack,” a click, the Zen of shooting

By Our Readers July 2007
Readers Write

Games

A Froot Loops message board, bicycle soccer, the MIT blackjack team

By Our Readers August 2005