You hit some notes that I think will be familiar to those who grew up around American football culture - especially if they have a bit of an artist's temperament.

We associate certain records and books with the time of year we encountered them, and the sensual rituals woven around their consumption.

Sports are no different in that regard. I see this essay as a psalm to one facet of a Big Tent culture that we sit in the ashes of.

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Lots of good stuff here, Tom. The closest we get to that in Canada is our minor league sports teams but they are forever fixed in their leagues. Nonetheless, my own town had a minor league hockey team for about a decade (it moved to another community a few years ago) and it was certainly a source of pride for many. I appreciate your peak inside the head of someone who grew up with football as a powerful presence in your community.

But it was your birthplace that really caught my eye. My father's mother lived on Gorsey Lane in Little Wyrley as a child until emigrating to Canada shortly after the Titanic sank. In 1997 I visited the area trying to figure out where her home might have been but never quite found it. The thought that I might have been driving within 10 miles of young Thomas J Bevan is quite interesting to me.

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