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“The Weird World of Sports” from The New York Times pays homage to a whole genre of sports, referring to sporting events that are decidedly a little more ‘off the grid,’ so to speak. Sol Neelman is the author of the article, and of a soon-to-be-published book along the same lines. He spends his weekends chronicling sports where dogs pull kegs of beer, skiers are pulled by horses, softball is played in drag, football is played in lingerie, and hockey is played underwater.
Mr. Neelman’s journey into the sports hinterlands started when he stopped shooting for The Oregonian newspaper in 2007 and attended Geekfest, which he calls a conference for “recovering newspaper photographers.” Inspired to take pictures for his own gratification, Mr. Neelman, a native of Portland, Ore., shot a roller derby in Seattle and was captivated by the energy at the event.
“It was so much fun that I just thought, ‘What’s next? Cow chip-throwing contest in Oklahoma?’” he said “‘I’m there.’”
Mr. Neelman began blogging about his adventures outside the sports mainstream, developing a style he describes as “more refined and a little sillier.” A chance encounter with a judge familiar with his work at the Frankfurt Book Fair in Germany in 2010 led to a book deal.
While Neelman’s upcoming book “Weird Sports” isn’t slated to make landfall until April 10, you’ll just have to read the rest of this fascinating article to tide you over. You can check it out in full here.