Now it can be told: On Saturday, June 7, I will be appearing at the Chicago Tribune's Printers Row Lit Fest, where I will be discussing the 1976 baseball season (with emphasis on Bill Veeck and the shorts-clad White Sox) with Gary Johnson, president of the Chicago HIstory Museum. The event will be held from 11:45 AM to 12:30 PM in Jones College/Prep Classroom #5010; afterwards, I will be signing copies of Stars and Strikes: Baseball and America in the Bicentennial Summer of '76, and generally shooting the shit. I hope to see all of my Chicago friends, fans and extended family there. (Admission costs a buck — but I promise you a return of at least $1.25 in educational/entertainment value.)
For those of you who don't know, I lived in the City of Big Shoulders (and even bigger eye-tralian beef sandwiches) from 1980 to 1993, and still feel a deep personal connection to the place; I spent countless teenage hours wandering around the Loop and Printers Row, so it means a lot to me to be to be able to return there as part of Lit Fest's landmark 30th year. I will be doing some TV and radio appearances while I'm in town, but this will be my only Chicago signing event in June; I will, however, be back in mid-August for some rowdier Stars and Strikes-related shenanigans. Below is the current, most up-to-date list of my reading/signing events for this summer:
June 7 (11:45 am) — Chicago Tribune Printers Row Lit Fest, Chicago, IL
June 23 (7 pm) — Walk A Crooked Mile Books, Philadelphia, PA
June 24 (7 pm) — Trolley Car Cafe, Philadelphia, PA
June 26 (7 pm) — Bergino Baseball Clubhouse, NYC
June 27 (2 pm) — Hall of Fame, Cooperstown, NY
June 29 (7 pm) — Manitoba's Bar, NYC
July 1 (7 pm) — Harvard Book Store, Cambridge, MA
July 29 (5 pm) — Mudville Flats, San Diego, CA
August 14 (7 pm) — Liar's Club, Chicago, IL
August 15 (7 pm) — The Book Cellar, Chicago, IL
August 18 (7 pm) — Boswell Book Company, Milwaukee, WI
Stars and Strikes has been getting a lot of great press and media attention, which of course is immensely gratifying. Rob Neyer featured the book (and interviewed me) this week for his Fox Sports column, and it received a short but very sweet review this week from Kirkus Books. And speaking of growing up in Chicago, I'll be doing Steve Dahl's podcast this coming Tuesday, which totally blows my mind since Steve (and his WLUP morning show with former sidekick Garry Meier) was — along with Bill Veeck and Mike Royko — a major cultural touchstone for me when I first moved to Chicago. If you had assured me at age 13 that I would someday be interviewed by Steve about my writing, well, I wouldn't have spent another minute worrying about whether or not I'd chosen the right career path...
Regarding my East Coast promo swing, I should also mention that my June 25 appearance on WFMU's Evan "Funk" Davies Show has now been officially confirmed. The last time I was in the WFMU studios, on May 25, 2010, I enjoyed an immensely entertaining discussion with Evan and his listeners about the joys of 70s baseball, which was punctuated by some choice musical selections from yours truly. (You can listen to the archived broadcast HERE.) This time, we will be focusing on the madness and magic of 1976, both on the diamond and on the radio — Peter Frampton will surely be heard from at some point in the broadcast. A splendid, star-spangled time is guaranteed for all, so mark your calendars!