All posts tagged "sports"

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Are You Ready for the Super Bowl?

On Sunday, February 3, the National Football League (NFL) will be hosting the 47th Super Bowl in New Orleans featuring the San Francisco 49ers and Baltimore Ravens. I predict that the San Francisco 49ers will win. I can't make the game live, so I thought I would bring a little bit of New Orleans to my party by making some gumbo from a recipe I got from the library. If Southern Cooking isn't your style, the library has a large collection of cook books you can browse through to find the right recipes to fit your party or just to try something new.


What will you be making and who will you be rooting for this Super Bowl Sunday?

¡Vamos Rafa!

cover image of "Rafa" I've never been much for the confessional nature of sports biographies, but somehow tennis seems to provide the exception to that rule. Maybe it's the seemingly obvious in that tennis players appear always willing to confess some of the unseen seediness of this sport of the genteel class, or that in spite of this chosen glamor profession it seems clear that, well, in many cases tennis pros seem to have some personality issues which can at times make for some entertaining reading. Rafael Nadal is not revealing any of the sturm und drang of the Andre Agassi or John McEnroe bios, but in his autobiography Rafa he provides an insightful telling regarding his approach to the sport and it's place in his life. You want to know about his sometimes torturous relationship with his uncle and coach Toni? Check. Interested in his close-knit Mallorcan family, upbringing and longtime girlfriend? You got it.


The real appeal of this book seems to be in Rafa elucidating his approach to the game and in particular an account of two of his most epic matches: the 2008 Wimbledon final against Roger Federer and the 2010 US Open final against a raging up and comer in Novak Djokovic. His comments regarding the latter are prescient indeed as Rafa lost this year's US Open only 4 days ago to the same Djokovic (not to mention the 2011 Wimbledon final). With Rafa now the world's number 2 player behind Djokovic it's clear that this 25 year old has more than a few years of tennis left in him, but will his sizable and devoted fan base and talent propel him to the top spot again? We'll see, but whatever the case this book will appeal most to players and fans of the sport, so if you fall into either category have a read to fill yourself in about the life thus far of this colossal yet humble figure in world tennis.

History Will Be Made

Cover of The Hockey Book by Sports IllustratedToday playoff season begins for our very own San Jose Sharks. In celebration of what will be their road to Lord Stanley’s Cup, here are some quite interesting facts about hockey, the Sharks, and anything else related. 


  • The Stanley Cup is the only professional sports trophy that is passed from team member to team member of the winning team.
  • The Montreal Canadiens have won the most Stanley Cup titles… 24!  Their nickname, “Habs” comes from “les habitants” a name given to the first settlers of New France during the 17th Century.
  • Sharks” was actually the runner-up name for the team.  The initial name for the team was going to be the Blades. 
  • Coach Todd McLellan tied former NHL coach Mike Keenan with 152 wins in his first three seasons with the Sharks.  McLellan’s former job was as assistant coach with the Detroit Red Wings.
  • The Junior Sharks 12 U girls hockey team won the first national title for the programbeating the New England Jr. Falcons on April 2nd. 

Let's Go Sharks!

Béisbol = 野球 Yakyū = Baseball!

Cover of Baseball: An Illustrated HistoryThe baseball season is upon us, what with the MLB season starting on Thursday, March 31st. It's sometimes difficult to explain the grip that baseball has on the casual fan, of which I am one, because in many ways it's a seriously neurotic way of observing the passing days of Spring, Summer, and if your team is lucky (or good), Fall. The season is too long, the games too many, but somehow every year I look forward to congregating in Oakland (sorry Giants fans) with my brothers, my nephews, my own son and the occasional female member of our troupe just to reconnect with the first stadium and, indeed, team that I ever felt compelled to support as mine.


Check out the book Baseball: An Illustrated History to get an overview and, if nothing else, a reason to remind yourself of the enormity and importance that baseball history provides in our country's identity. Another title worth giving major props is From Asahi to Zebras: Japanese American Baseball in San Jose, California by the library's own Ralph Pearce.


So whether your team is from Maracaibo, Chicago(Cubs or Sox), Hokkaido or Oakland(!), it's time to root root root for the home team and praise the glory of neurotic affiliation and loyalty to your baseball colors!


p.s.: New SF Giants' dvd The Magic Inside is available in case you want to relive last season ... again.

Soccer Song

Book cover of Soccer SongSoccer Song by Patricia Reilly Giff introduces us to Jill, a girl who loves sports. She uses her strong hands and long arms to play many outdoor games and even rescues a cat! But you cannot use your hands or arms when you play soccer! Can Jill use her head and find a way to be really good at soccer? A story written especially for young children all about trying to do your best. This is a Green Light Readers Level 2 series book.

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