Monthly Archives: September 2013

Chris Kluwe: Book author/NFL punter

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It’s a big week for the Mightier Than the Sword podcast and Chris Kluwe. We booked our first professional athlete for MTTS to talk with us about his writing skills, and for Kluwe, he made history as the first person ever to speak on this podcast after appearing on Conan AND the Ellen how. Really, it’s a big week for everybody involved.

This week, Kluwe and I talked about how he’s adjusting to life as an in-season NFL free agent, how his profanity is so beautifully written, and why he uses that graphic approach to draw attention to his underlying point. Plus, Kluwe theorizes on the idea of “truth,” why he bothers dealing with Internet hate and how he would change the Pro Football Hall of Fame voting process.

Warning: the language in this podcast is more explicit than normal.

Since we talk about this piece quite a bit in the podcast, here was Kluwe’s letter to Maryland state delegate Emmett C. Burns.

Also, here’s his piece for themmqb.com on his punting battle with Marquette King.

Here was some of what we talked about (and some of what we didn’t).

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Burger Mary, BBQ writer/social media maven

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For the first time, we interview our subject live and in person, and we had the ideal guest – the talented Burger Mary (AKA Jess Pryles). She’s Australian, she’s a social media maven and she blogs about BBQ (and from personal experience, she can cut a mean slice of brisket). This week, we talk about why an Australian heavy metal VJ fell in love with the romanticism of the American South, particularly New Orleans and Austin.

Plus, we ruminate on how she got entangled in the BBQ scene in the U.S. (and what the food scene is like in Australia), why she’s always gravitated toward the so-called male-dominated fields, and how to eat healthy while ingesting beef ribs and BBQ sauce. Plus, I get to tell my Roger Federer/salad dressing story.

Here’s some of what we talked about (and some of what we didn’t).

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The art of asking questions, part II

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This week marks the second of two episodes in which five writers and I discuss the art of asking questions. Today, we’ll entertain NY Times best-selling author Jeff Pearlman, Cincinnati Enquirer beat writer Bill Koch and Columbus Dispatch beat writer Bill Rabinowitz (last week, in case you missed it, we spoke with Tampa Bay Times enterprise writer Ben Montgomery and CBSSports.com national columnist Gregg Doyel).

With Pearlman, we talk about the John Rocker story, whether Pearlman thinks now he should have given Rocker the chance to take back his controversial comments before he published them in Sports Illustrated, and about his approach to asking the tough questions. Koch, meanwhile, talks about how a daily beat writer approaches the question-asking when he sees the same coach a few times per week and why humor is one way to build a rapport with those he covers (he also tells some fantastic stories about Tennessee coach Butch Jones). Finally, Rabinowitz talks about why sometimes the best question to ask is, well, silence.

And because I replayed Montgomery’s story on Dan Barry and his 2005 NY Times piece about a man saving another person from drowning, here’s the link to that wonderful Barry feature.

The art of asking questions, part I

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This week marks the first of two episodes in which five writers and I discuss the art of asking questions. Today, it’s Tampa Bay Times enterprise writer Ben Montgomery and CBSSports.com national columnist Gregg Doyel, and next week, we’ll entertain author Jeff Pearlman, Cincinnati Enquirer beat writer Bill Koch and Columbus Dispatch beat writer Bill Rabinowitz.

Montgomery tells a fantastic tale of how one journalist slowly adds details to a story about a hero by the way he approaches the question-asking, while Doyel talks about why it’s important not to be scared to ask the challenging questions (“Fear is weakness,” he says). Also, Doyel and I chat about this:

Plus, a sneak peek at what next week’s trio says.