This may be the last Tour de France that has the attention of red-blooded American sports consumers.
Lance Armstrong has carried the Tour de France on his shoulders and brought it into the living rooms of meat-eating, red-blooded American sports consumers. Sadly, this is Armstrong's last year as porter. Win or lose, Lance says he will retire come July 24. You've got to admire the Hollywood movie he's giving us on the way out. Armstrong is going for an unprecedented seventh Tour de France victory. This would be an athletic achievement in the category of Joe DiMaggio's 56-game hitting streak, Wilt Chamberlain's 100-point game, or Rocky Marciano's career record of 49-0.
By Patrick Daugherty, July 7, 2005 | Read full article
Armstrong wearing the yellow jersey at the 2005 Tour de France. Today is the Tour's first Alpine climbing day, 120 miles long with a rise from 721 to 6,574 feet.
The phone rings, I pick up and hear, "Feel like dinner? I'm in town." This is the familiar voice of Michael Bogey, travel junkie and adrenaline addict. Bogey likes fast. He's raced motorcycles in Africa, go-karts in France, trekked Nepal, ran rivers in Indonesia, raced snowmobiles in the Arctic, and came within one-hairpin turn of making the U.S. Olympic luge team. He's a downhill skier, airplane pilot, charter boat captain... we can stop here.
By Patrick Daugherty, July 14, 2005 | Read full article
Murderball is the best movie I've seen this year. "Some San Diego players are in the movie."
"Most wheelchair sports are boring. This is the only one where you can smash into people and knock them out of their chairs. I rarely knock anyone out of their chair because I'm a low-pointer, but on the rare occasions I do, I can't help but laugh my ass off."
"I assume you've seen Murderball?"
Richardson says, "I've seen bits and pieces of it. Some San Diego players are in the movie."
By Patrick Daugherty, July 28, 2005 | Read full article
Barry Bonds at bat. Every acquaintance, friend, relative, every woman he's slept with, will consider selling him out in return for a small check or an appearance on Fox News.
Before we move into football (the NFL preseason kicks off on Saturday), the Box would like to award its Sportsman of the Year trophy. Regulars will recall that the trophy is a handsome 18-inch-tall bronze statue depicting a solitary professional athlete standing in an Iowa cornfield, weathered cap clutched tight by callused left hand, manly right hand extending outward to receive a check for ten million dollars. The trophy is awarded every August 1 to commemorate the Battle of Jutland.
This year's recipient is Barry Bonds. In addition to the statue, the Box would like to express regret for the unkind innuendoes that have appeared in this space concerning his use of steroids, head size, and unrelenting pig-like selfishness. They made me do it.
By Patrick Daugherty, Aug. 4, 2005 | Read full article
I've stepped out of the darkened cave — or, more precisely, have exited the animal den known in another life as my living room, to stroll in fresh air and reconnect my chakra with living things. This adventure is a result of this morning's discovery that my living room seemed to be congested with — I'll say it out loud: food droppings. Bits and pieces of pizza, hamburger, bacon, T-bone steak, egg yolks, breadcrumbs, potato chips, turkey bones, pork ribs, plus several to many organic items I do not, at present, recognize…. The indoor sludge heap is due entirely to 26 college-football bowl games and 32 NFL games that were played over the course of 12 days.
Jan. 6, 2005 | Read full article
"There's one level on the scale that's a rare level; that's the one where you can't walk, there are so many fish on the beach."
"Everybody I know, once in their life, has gone out to watch grunion run, but I don't recall anyone actually seeing grunion. What, exactly, is your connection to the beast?" I'm on the phone with Melissa Studer, 33, marine conservationist and Grunion Greeter Project program coordinator.
"We train volunteers to go out and observe the grunion run," Studer says, "and report basic information back to our website.
"This year we'll be testing whether or not we can use grunion as an indicator species. Can grunion tell us about the ecological health of our beaches, whether our beaches are polluted or not?"
March 31, 2005 | Read full article