‘Between The Halves’ by John O’Hara


Between The Halves by John O’Hara, 1929

The magic trick:

Constructing a story around one speech

Slight stuff today. Early John O’Hara. Early New Yorker. It’s more of a sketch than story but still worth a mention. It’s a nice way to celebrate another Superbowl Sunday.

It really is just a speech – a football coach’s halftime speech to his team. It’s supposed to be funny. He’s dumbfounded by his team’s play. I didn’t laugh, but, hey, whatever. It’s an amusing little story. And that’s quite a trick on O’Hara’s part.

The selection:

Let’s get right down to cases. You, Ridgeway. I understand you’re quite a bridge player. Is that why you’re afraid to use your hands? You’re about as much help to the team as that head linesman. No, you’re not even that much help. At least that head linesman can make some of the other guys mad enough to play football, but you – you just…

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