Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Not much baseball news lately, so let's try something new. I just finished Word Freak, this awesome book about Scrabble. Yep: Scrabble. It's not really a book about strategy or how to improve - basically, a Wall Street Journal reporter took a year off from work to become a full-time Scrabble player. This has happened before in other fields - I'm almost sure a guy who was doing a report on the World Series of Poker entered the $10,000 event and made it to the final table. This book doesn't quite have such a happy ending - the guy, Stefan Fatsis, becomes an above-average but not expert player - but the characters he profiles are fascinating. None of them are normal, and Fatsis theorizes that for anyone to become an expert Scrabble player - which requires hours memorizing words, practicing anagrams, and memorizing more words - you have to be a little obsessive about the game. But this got me to thinking, if this is true for Scrabble, wouldn't it be true for anything, really? Am I obsessed with the Astros? With tennis? With video games? With Keira Knightley?

I think we all have our 'Scrabble', in one form or another, whether it's a sport, a game, a hobby...whatever. If you want, IM me with whatever fascinates you, and I'll post results tomorrow.

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