tandfman: I believe that we're in full agreement. Part of the reason I posted the original "review" was to try to highlight both what was good, and what was less good, in this book. This is, I believe, "constructive criticism" that will be useful both to the publisher (if a second edition is ever contemplated) and to other writers/researchers. Other views are of course possible, and I welcome them all. It's only by this kind of PUBLIC discussion that we can hope to reinforce basic standards of quality. On the contrary, the worst thing we can do is either issue blanket condemnations of flawed projects, or to accept uncritically anything written on the subject. Both these approaches are unproductive. I'm idealistic enough to think that track history is REAL HISTORY and should be treated with all the professional care and precision we'd expect from any other serious history book.
It's only by this kind of PUBLIC discussion
>that we can hope to reinforce basic standards of quality.
Never surrender. One of my brothers and I run several times a week with a fellow that doesn't have the best english skills and we are correcting him all the time and he is actually learning-and it is all in fun but not really. It's a habit that we picked up from our dad who was/is an educator. He used to send our report cards back to the teachers with corrections to the spelling and grammar. THAT used to really ingratiate us with them.
Last edited by MJD on Wed Apr 14, 2004 2:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
Sorry, miss read you review. I thought you meant the date was listed as 1/1 in the book not January 1. But it would be easy to mix up 1/1 with 7/1. I just didn't see the american/european date error as you implied.
My point is this; was the book written as a historical account or as a story? If it was a historical account you have merit, but if it was written as a story I don't see the harm in a few missed facts.
I go back to the movie "The First Olympics"; the mile was an exciting race in the movie. So, close the spectators didn't know who won and the judges had to confer. In the results the Aussie won by a second. Now how could the judges and spectators not know who won with that margin of victory? The error or misconception added to the suspense of the story. I can point out other events that were erroneous but had a context or reason for editing.
Why is baseball america's past time? Why has boxing lost it's luster? I believe it is writers. TFN does an excellent job of writing for the technical fan, results are accurate, description of events are relivant, but it does not inspire the fans. Before TV writers made legends out of one hit wonders, now it seems to be just the facts. TF needs more books which may bring interest from the nontechnical fan. My wife read a review of the book and is actually interested in it, and I'm sure that the stats in it will just be unimportant info.
Sorry, I go to text books, result web sites and almanacs if I want factual info. I read stories to be entertained.
>It's only by this kind of PUBLIC discussion
>that we can hope to reinforce
>basic standards of quality.
Never surrender. One of my brothers and I run
>several times a week with a fellow that doesn't have the best english skills..
You need to re think your standards of PUBLIC discussion. This is an open forum, you are debating topics with rapist in jails, 10 year olds, people with english as a second or third language... Finding glee with spelling errors when people are talking about running and throwing are pretty sick human qualities.
>>This is an open forum, you are debating topics with rapist in jails, 10 year olds, people with english as a second or third language...<<
I don't believe any of the recent board whipping posts have claimed to be ESL'ers. Now, that
doesn't rule out 10 year olds or rapists in jail (as opposed to rapists not in jail?)<<
No, Asterix, you miss the point. This guy referred to "rapist in jails." One rapist, multiple jails. Apparently, where he lives, there's only one rapist and they move him around from jail to jail so the jails without a rapist of their own won't feel deprived.
No, Asterix, you miss the point. This guy referred to
>"rapist in jails." One rapist, multiple jails. Apparently, where he lives,
>there's only one rapist and they move him around from jail to jail so the jails
>without a rapist of their own won't feel deprived.
My bad. I thought we were told not to quibble about spelling and figure out what people meant to write, not go by what they actually wrote.
>MJD: Yes, I'm quite sure that Plato, Aristotle, and every one of the
>Pre-Socratics is guzzling hemlock at this very moment.
Actually, I tried to get an actual Greek scholar to weigh in here a la Marshall McLuhan in Annie Hall but he wisely wouldn't lower himself to such a level and said something like a little bit of knowledge is very dangerous.
Epelle: I would certainly think that this book will get (or is already getting) international distribution. It's available on amazon.com (at a nice discount), but I haven't checked amazonuk, for example...
EPelle: Thanks for your good words. A thought: I'd love to see an in-depth study (in English, sorry!) of Haegg and Anderson and their era...any interest in spending a few years of your life researching and writing? It's amazing that they are both still alive!
Seriously, this could be a lively story and a very important contribution to athletics history. I'll be happy to lend whatever moral support I can! The next time I'm in Stockholm, I'll stop by to see how work is progressing!! %-)
I just bought it from amazon.com. I had never dealt with them before, it was easy. $ 16 and change plus $ 3 and change for shipping.
I like all others grind my teeth every time I see errors in T&F books and articles. And what scares me, as well as many of you, is that if I always see errors in the stuff I know the best, I can only conclude that there are errors EVERYWHERE that I do not detect. Just shows that when I writer writes a book on a specialty area, the editors that have even less knowledge than the writer in that area are useless on cleaning up factual errors. Like when I mentioned that Bob Kerrey talked of Nebraska classmate Charlie "Green"... no editor in the world would know that was wrong.
>I just bought it from amazon.com. I had never dealt with them before, it was easy. $ 16 and change plus $ 3 and change for shipping.<
If you buy more than I think it's $25 worth of most items, and are willing to accept a slightly slower deliver schedule, Amazon will waive the shipping charge. Bear in mind that they sell CD's and DVD's and other merchandise as well as books. I've never found it a problem getting to the minimum for no shipping charge, even when I'm in there primarily to buy a single item. There's always something else I can be happy buying. It's like being in a big store with a $3 coupon that's good only if you buy at least $25 worth of stuff. I can't remember the last time I paid the Amazon shipping charge.
A note from the author of THE PERFECT MILE in regard to messages posted on this board.
Thank you very much for the kind words--and criticisms--about my book. I always appreciate close readers, particularly when they spot errors that have crept into the published edition, despite my arduous attempts to avoid them.
My goal in writing this book was not only to enthrall and entertain readers (track aficionados and lay people alike), but also to add to the historical record about this great sporting achievement. In this respect, I have included a very detailed endnote section at the back of the book, indicating that my narrative was drawn from historical sources or contemporary author interviews. Nobody is perfect, however, even perfect milers, and it pains me that some mistakes have been made, whether from sourcing an incorrect source or by my own hand. Please know that I will make sure to notify my publisher of these errors to be corrected in the paperback edition.
Regardless of my faults, I hope that most readers will find that in THE PERFECT MILE I have captured the essence (and great drama) of this pivotal moment in track and field history and that they will recommend it to their friends.
I look forward to reading more of your comments in the future.
Thanks Neal, great to hear from you. Looking forward to reading your book. Hope you appreciate the spirit with which comments were made about some factual errors. As has been mentioned, we're a tough crowd !
Thanks again both for writing the book and taking the time to comment here. And if you ever write another book about T&F, you know where to come for editing help !
The website said it would be shipped within 24 hours 4 days ago and today I got this. Maybe that is a good thing?
"We have an update on your chapters.indigo.ca order, OR10548946. The following item(s) is
temporarily out of stock and is being re-ordered for you:
Item Title (Type)
The Perfect Mile: Three Athletes, One Goal, and Less Than Four Minutes to Achieve It (BOOK)
We expect to receive stock of this item(s) within two weeks; we will ship your item(s) as soon
we receive it.
Please note: should we be unable to source your item(s) within this time frame we will cancel
this item from your order. Any remaining item(s) in your order will continue to stay on order.
Should you wish to cancel your order now, you may do so online via your online account. Please
click on the link below (or paste this link into your browser), sign into your online account
and then follow the instructions provided:
https://shop.chapters.indigo.ca/OrderHi ... efault.asp.
We do our best to maintain the accuracy of our inventory, and we apologize for any
inconvenience this delay may have caused.
I don't think this situation will be very common. Every large bookstore in my city has copies, and I've gotten word from a very "inside" source that a total of 40,000 were printed. As a last resort, try amazon.com.
>I don't think this situation will be very common. Every large bookstore in my
>city has copies, and I've gotten word from a very "inside" source that a
>total of 40,000 were printed. As a last resort, try amazon.com.
They are having some trouble getting through the snow.