John McIntyre, whom James Wolcott calls "the Dave Brubeck of the art and craft of copy editing," writes on language, editing, journalism, and other manifestations of human frailty. Comments welcome. Identifying his errors relieves him of the burden of omniscience. Write to, befriend at Facebook, or follow at Twitter: @johnemcintyre. Back 2009-2012 at the original site, and now at

Sunday, October 11, 2009

A sweet moment

On Friday evening, I was driving my son home for the weekend from his cooking job. As we listened to the radio, a sports commentary came on the air. After a minute or two of this palaver, J.P. muttered:

“I hate sports.”

A warm glow suffusing my body, I realized that my duty as a parent had been discharged.


  1. I hate them too. Thank goodness I'm not the only one.

  2. Does that mean that people who are literate and who also like occasional forays into sports should give up one or the other? . Both my nieces played (the operative verb being "played") sports in high school and struggled through with 4.00 averages, while taking A.P. (not Associated Press) courses. They continue to do well in college and graduate school. I think the self-satisfied smirks are a tad elitist (Oh! No! She used the E word!) And I know for a certainty that some St John's students manage to combine both quite successfully - they also manage to stay fitter, longer. (That doesn't mean I recommend listening to countless hours of ESPN blah blah blah: it's the same as listening to CNN blah blah blah, and the babblers are just as articulate.)

  3. It only means that parents like it when their kids share their values.

  4. Especially if their values are minority values.