Review of Al Michaels Book: You Can’t Make This Up

While on my vacation, I quickly ready through Al Michaels book on his nostalgic viewpoints on the landscape of Sports. He’s had a front row seat to tons of events, including some of the greatest Super Bowls every played (including the one on Sunday where he called an almost perfect broadcasting game), and of course his iconic call of “Do you believe in miracles” when the USA hockey team beat the Soviets in the greatest sports upset of all-time in 1980.

What I personally remember about Michaels as a kid was him calling baseball, mainly the post-season games he covered. The 1986 ALCS is something I’ll always remember as a 10 year old kid who was beginning to fall in love with the sport. Game #5 of that series was as shocking as they come. It was Thanksgiving in Canada and the male grownups in my family didn’t want to start dinner until the game was over in the 9th when the Angels were up against the Red Sox 5-2. Well craziness happened that inning as the Red Sox tied it up and they went to extra innings. My uncled moved the television to the dining room and we actually watched the rest of the game while eating our holiday dinner, much to the anger of my mother and grandmother. For me, I loved it, and it was the birth of me loving the game and the broadcasters calling it like Michaels did that day.

He talks about that game in detail and many other games and moments in his life, including his friendship with OJ Simpson that turned sour after a double murder occurred. It was a fun read and for Michaels, he got his story down so his legacy stays intact whenever he passes away.

I really wished Michaels digged deeper with this book and talked about more about his personal life and the parallels of it in relation to his job. I really wanted to know who he was and what made him tic. But he wasn’t going there and I really don’t blame him. There’s really no reason for him to. His broadcasting persona and his real life persona could be the same person and that’s what he’s trying to say. I didn’t buy it but I still enjoyed reading his perspective on all the great games he called.

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Matthew Toffolo

Filmmaker of over 20 short films and TV episodes, Matthew Toffolo is the current CEO of the WILDsound Film and Writing Festival. He had worked for the organization since its inception in 2007 serving as the Short Film Festival’s moderator during the Audience Feedback sessions.

Go to http://www.wildsound.ca and submit your film, script, or story to the festival.

Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com and watch recent and past winning writing festival readings.