For four years, Lynne Truss was a sports writer for The Times. Plucked from her comfort zone of writing theatre reviews, she launched into the worlds of boxing, tennis, golf and football. Navigating each world brought its own particular tensions, and she recalls her experiences with an enthusiasm that eventually ebbed away. As she moves through her four year journey, her exhaustion becomes palpable, and her stoicism against the cold-shouldering of colleagues is admirable. I’m guessing that the temptation to punch the gits who made her life miserable must have been ever-present. It’s a touching tribute to an important part of her life. She says goodbye to this part of her career with a sentiment one would reserve for an ex-boyfriend who was tolerated for too long and turned out to be a pain in the arse. When she leaves sports writing, she is free again.
It is told with humour and she becomes more open about her frustrations as she continues her narrative through the different events she covered. Chapters are peppered with detailed statistics on sporting particulars, and her rants about Alan Shearer and the football fraternity are priceless.
It’s worth picking up this book just to scrutinise the cover photo of Truss with Lineker (that’s Gary, in case you didn’t know). Funny, frank, and a good holiday read.