A couple of weeks ago, I blogged about my goals for 2015 and one of them was to do an even bigger empty shelf challenge and really get more reading done this year. One of the first books I have started the year off with is Those Guys Have All The Fun by James Andrew Miller and Thomas Shales. The books is about the history of ESPN from conception to the sports media giant that it is today.
The first thing that really stands out about it is the way the authors have chosen to give the history of ESPN. Rather than tell the history from the authors point of view, the history of ESPN is told through the words of the people involved. For the beginning of the story where we see where the idea of ESPN came from, the founders give their accounts. As things move along the investors, CEO’s, news anchors, sports reporters, and several hundred people who have been involved with ESPN tell their versions of what took place. Occasionally the author steps in and lets you know what event is going on, but then the story line goes back to the reflection of those who were there.
As I read the book I found myself liking some ESPN personalities that I really hadn’t in the past, disliking others that I had previous liked, and my assumptions on some were just reinforced. It was very interesting to also read how often times the same event was remembered very differently by each of the individuals that were involved.
If you are a sports nut, like me, watch SportsCenter on a continuous loop, enjoy entertainment and media in general, or just like good histories, Those Guys Have All The Fun is a great read. I will warn you that this book is written exactly in the words of those who were there and so the language sometimes can get a bit rough. As long as you can handle that and the possibility of being a little disappointed in some of your favorite sports casters I definitely recommend you check out Those Guys Have All The Fun.