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Feature Mon Jun 21 2010
Even though Chicago-bred journalist Dan Epstein does have a pretty sweet 'fro, his new book Big Hair and Plastic Grass: A Funky Ride Through Baseball and America in the Swinging '70s is not a memoir. Instead, it's an homage to a decade in baseball known more for its crazy characters than the stats it produced. It's also a decade that Epstein experienced personally -- even if his readers don't believe it:
The weirdest thing anyone's asked me (and I've gotten several variations on this) is, "Were you even ALIVE in the '70s? You look like you're about 30." I'm 44, so obviously I took that as a compliment, but I also thought it was a little bizarre -- it implied that I wouldn't have been totally qualified to write a book on baseball in the 1970s if I hadn't actually "been there." I'm pretty sure Edward Gibbon didn't personally experience the decline and fall of the Roman Empire, but he still managed to cobble together a decent book on the subject!
Celebrate the book's publication with Epstein this Thursday, June 24, 8:30pm to 2am, at the Liar's Club, 1665 W. Fullerton Ave, where you are encouraged to bring "a crappy late-'70s rock LP with you to be destroyed" and dress in '70s duds. A "more sedate" gathering will be held on Friday, June 25, 7pm at the Book Cellar, 4736 N. Lincoln Ave.