Pele As A Comedian


This essay over at Run Of Play riffs on David Foster Wallce’s essay “Roger Federer As A Religious Experience”; an essay I linked six weeks ago.

It’s heavier stuff than I’ve been able to write about up to now. It talks about the meaning of Pele. I still haven’t been able to do something as heady as writing about The Meaning of X yet. Do yourself a favor and check it out if you can. Incidentally, “Pele As A Comedian” links to a comment on another article at that blog that mentions baseball.

The perfectly symmetrical face — when generated as an artificial image, which is the only way perfect symmetry happens — is less interesting, less attractive, than the face that bears, however subtly, the asymmetries of ordinary human physiognomy. Pelé is just too damned symmetrical. What did he do excellently? — well, everything…

For the same reason I do not find it especially interesting to watch Albert Pujols swing the bat. Impressive as hell, yes, but not interesting. Everything’s too perfect: the balance, the stillness of his head, the economy of movement. How much more fun to watch Babe Ruth, with his pot belly and huge stride and prissy little mince around the bases.

I’ve spent a lot of time over the past decade in virtual salons that discuss sports. Run of Play might earn more looks from me. A virtual tip of the fedora to Bethlehem Shoals at Free Darko for bring this new &^%$ to light.

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Filed under baseball, beisbol, Other sports

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