David James Brock

Theatre, Opera, Poetry, Film

David James Brock is a Canadian writer of opera, theatre, poetry, and film.
Author of poetry collections Everyone is CO2 and Ten-Headed Alien.
Co-creator of Breath Cycle, an opera for cystic fibrosis.

A book I like a lot: The Utility of Boredom by Andrew Forbes

Lately I feel like my Twitter is just becoming on long string of tweets about baseball, which I'm uneasy about for some reason, as though I'm supposed to only be tweeting about opera or poetry or theatre or the cat I don't have.

I've written about it before, but my first real steps in creative writing were mostly through writing baseball plays, and my current baseball preoccupation has me interested in finding ways back towards this in a way that adds to, rather than repeats, the conversations.

I admire writers who have managed to turn their love of baseball towards meaningful writing, particularly Stacey May Fowles (@MissStaceyMay) and Andrew Stoeten (@AndrewStoeten). And then there's this book...ah this book... The Utility of Boredom (Invisible Publishing) by Andrew Forbes that I just think is the most satisfying thing I've read in a long time.

This book is like a great dental cleaning, getting to me in the right spots, reminding me that I also need to tend to those spots on my own. Largely a book of personal essays with baseball nostalgia in full force, it's the type of book I simultaneously love and am completely jealous of for not being the one to write it. I think that's a sign of a good book: you read it, you emerge, and seething jealousy creeps in during the silences (that's healthy right?)

Worst seats in the house on a Friday in June.

Worst seats in the house on a Friday in June.

I'm not going to "review" the book, except to say, if you've stumbled across this blog for some reason (posting about the Kansas City Royals has driven far more people to my blog than any of my own work) and haven't read Andrew Forbes' The Utility of Boredom, you just really should. 

Essay Highlights:

Everything is Beautiful and Nothing Makes Sense, chronicling that collection of hours in October 2015 where the Blue Jays completely took over Toronto in a good way. Forbes slows down time in the way a good music journalist does when writing about how a song works.

Marco Scutaro Hits a Foul Ball, which combines the romance of catching a foul ball at a minor league game and the the romance of a new relationship that I want to believe grew during the moment of the catch. This story could be an operetta. 

Jim Eisenreich's Eyes, a beautiful piece of baseball card nostalgia that has inspired me to attempt an online Bunz trade to procure an unopened box of 1991 Upper Deck baseball cards for a couple subway tokens (the opening of said box will hopefully the subject of a future blog).

1984 Detroit Tigers reference never hurt no one...

1984 Detroit Tigers reference never hurt no one...