Received my copy today. Looks like a lot of fun. Bloggers making good – the tome was written by Bethlehem Shoals (Author), Dr. Lawyer IndianChief (Author), Silverbird 5000 (Author), Brown Recluse Esq. (Author), Big Baby Belafonte (Illustrator). Excerpts are available if you want to dip your toe in FreeDarko waters. I jumped right in on the strength of their brand.
The indispensible, amazingly illustrated companion to today’s NBA—a roundball Rosetta Stone that hilariously decodes the trends and tendencies of pro basketball.
The NBA of the moment is a league of hugely charismatic celebrities, crackling aesthetic intrigue, sociopolitical undercurrents, and raw humanity: every Kobe Bryant pump-fake or LeBron James dunk holds within it a Shaq-size load of meaning. The Macro-Phenomenal NBA Almanac is a one-of-a-kind guide to this tumultuous and exciting league. In a series of brilliantly illustrated chapters—from Master Builders like Tim Duncan to Destiny’s Kids like Amare Stoudemire to Lost Souls like Lamar Odom—the almanac breaks down the styles of the NBA’s most colorful characters, showing what each one reveals through his play and conduct, both on the court and off. Filled with some of the smartest, funniest sportswriting known to fankind, this book will cast an entirely new light on one of our favorite games.
From the book site:
The Macrophenomenal Pro Basketball Almanac functions simultaneously as the ultimate basketball book for the ultimate NBA fan as well as the ideal sports book for the person with no interest in sports. This book will satiate the passionate sports fan’s desire to see athleticism legitimized as a cultural element extending beyond mere cro-magnon brawn.
Within the pages of this tome, NBA hoopery collides with Japanese noise-rock, municipal politics, experimental zoology, Belgian surrealism, and behavioral economics like never before. The mystical deities of this hallowed league of professional basketball are finally given the treatment they deserved, as they are scrutinized not as men, but as embodiments of our own core cultural values and insecurities.
Whereas past sports-literary endeavors have attempted to paint sports as a metaphor for life or life as a metaphor for sport, we depict the National Basketball Association as a universe unlike any that one would encounter in daily existence. The NBA is a sphere in which Indiana farmboys, housing project messiahs, African tribesmen, and escapees from war-torn Eastern Bloc countries, coalesce by the nature of their superhuman physicality. Free Darko was born to make sense of it all.
Awesome I say, awesome indeed.
One other point: the book is well designed, slick, with heavy paper stock, and brightly colored illustrations. Not a tri-fold manifesto published at night at a local copy shop, but a book that feels like it is something.