Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Throwback Special

The Throwback Special by Chris Bachelder, 213 pages

Every year, 22 men gather at a sub-par hotel and take part in a meticulously planned pageant of mass bromance: the re-creation of a five-second football play from 1985 that ended the career of Redskins quarterback Joe Theissman. The Throwback Special, which takes its name from the aforementioned play, is told largely through the internal monologues of the participants of this tradition, floating and flowing between men seemingly at random. No bones about it: this style is somewhat off-putting in the beginning of the book, when readers are trying to keep all the different re-enactors (can't really call them players) straight. But then you realize that you don't really have to remember who is who. The book is really more about the relationships between the men than anything else, and while those relationships make no sense to me (why the heck can't they just say what they think???), it is an interesting, and often chuckle-worthy, book. Just don't expect any answers when you read it.

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