Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Juan Williams reacts emotionally, “as a human being,” to Michelle Obama’s speech last night. . . . I know what it’s like to have so many books that moving is particularly difficult. And I have little mini-collections in my library -- 15 books by or about William James, etc. -- but I can’t quite fathom what it means to own 25,000 books about cricket. . . . If you want to know why giraffes are “Nature’s concept car,” and why the earthworm “has spent millions of years evolving in the dirt and detritus, yet peculiarly enough didn’t put in the little extra effort required to become a snake,” then you need to be reading Animal Review. . . . Since I wrote about his first installment last week, here's Anthony Lane's second dispatch from the Olympics. Sample: "Tennis carries with it such a halo of big money, and the players are so starkly defined by their individual gifts, that it’s hard to rethink it, for eight days, as an Olympic team game, ablaze with amateur good will. Hero worship, for all but a handful of Olympians, is the fleeting exception, whereas for tennis stars it’s the rule. Nadal, to his credit, looked delighted when he won the gold medal, but, as he tossed his wristbands to his fans, you could see, in their outstretched hands, a craving that no Olympics could ever sate: bring me the sweat of Rafael Nadal."


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