Independence Day Revisited


I hope everyone had an enjoyable and safe holiday. My 4th of July was pretty low-key. I watched Kobayashi cram down a record 53 and three-quarters hot dogs and buns in the annual eating competition on Coney Island. How do these guys not explode? And just how much do they have to “eat”? Kobayashi must have had at least two dogs still crammed in his mouth when the contest ended. Runner-up Joey Chestnut was the same way. Both of these guys looked like squirrels with their cheeks bulging out long after the competition was over. I don’t suppose it matters. I like me a chili dog as much as the next person, but I ain’t gonna eat

Then I watched Italy’s stunning last minute victory over Germany in the World Cup. Let’s hope that France beats Portugal tomorrow. If the championship match up ends up being Italy against Portugal, then the government will have to figure a way to sail the USNS Comfort hospital ship as close as they can get to Berlin. With both Italy and Portugal on the field at the same time, medical personnel will definitely need all 80 intensive care beds, all 500 limited care beds, and all 12 operating rooms to treat the “injuries” that are going to afflict those two teams. The flopping scourge that has afflicted this World Cup is making it increasingly hard to explain to my non-soccer-fan friends. The way some of these players act, you would think they are running on a field of rattle snakes. FIFA has to begin reviewing tape and disciplining the most egregious of these acting performances.

I also pulled down my copy of Richard Ford’s Independence Day and reminded myself of why Ford is so revered. This copy also happens to be one of my more interesting signed books. A first-edition in absolutely fantastic condition (I’m a bit obsessive about how I read books), this copy was signed on July 4, 1995. But whichever edition you can get your hands on, I definitely recommend reading this book. Ford’s new novel will be released in October and Independence Day is a great way to get ready.

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