woensdag 26 augustus 2015

Pull Up a Chair: The Vin Scully Story: Review

Curt smith wrote this biography of one of my favorite Dodgers, Vin Scully, who, after Tom Lasorda is in the organization the longest. He grew up a Giants fan but saw the light in 1950. Mostly thanks to the efforts of Red Barber who saw him as his legacy.

The writing is up and down. Sometimes staccato, sometimes almost Proustian. The use of an enormous amount of quotes makes it difficult to breeze through it. No need for that if the subject is interesting enough and yes, Vin is! Why does the mere mentioning of silver make him sweat. Which US president to be did The Franchise play against in a college game? Those are about the most personal questions you'll get an answer to.

I had hoped to get an insight, to get to know the man behind the microphone. But it never really comes to that. Vin is a very humble man, maybe that's why. Never wanting to show too much. This quote from Vin might just be at the core of why the whole book stays at a distance: "My style is no style. I'm really nothing. I'm what I am." Smith expects you to know about Dodger players and historical relevant events. The shot heard around the world, the first worls series win, Robinson's first season, Don Larsen's perfect game are all described in a manner of fact kinda way. If you never heard about these events before, it might seem they are just things that happened, nothing fancy.

The move West, though is chronicalled quite thorough though, but not, as I would expect in a book about Scully, told from Vin's point of view. Yes, he didn't look forward to the move but he felt at home quite soon. That's about it. But if you like classic Scully quotes you'll love the book. The best part is the verbatim radio call of the last three outs of Koufax's perfect game. Besides Vin you'll meet loads of his collegues and read about how the radio and tv commentary has changed over the years, with one exception: Scully. He does what he has done for decades, his way. All in all not easy to read, no surprising behind the curtain glimpses into the private life of the Dodgers voice. I'm hoping for a better, more personal account of his life some day.

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