It’s May 6, publication day for MICHAEL JORDAN: THE LIFE by veteran basketball writer and author Roland Lazenby. (And also a friend of yours truly.) The MJ biography is a massive work in so many ways, 700 pages of digging, reporting, context and revelation by the same talented author who so wonderfully presented Jerry West, a complex basketball icon, and the West Virginia roots that formed him.
“Michael has had a huge, huge life,” Roland told Ed Sherman, who wrote an early review for the Chicago Tribune. “It’s a business story, a basketball story, a baseball story, a cultural story, a family story, and I could go on.”
If you’re an MJ fan or a basketball fan, you’ll definitely want to read this story. If you’re interested in the compelling biography of a person who transcended his sport and shaped culture, order your copy and start reading.
I’m a fan–of Roland’s. I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know him the last few years because we live in the same area. He has tremendous passion for his work, and a generous spirit when it comes to helping and encouraging other writers and authors. I’ve seen it firsthand. I’ve experienced it firsthand.
Roland shared this MJ nugget in his author bio at Amazon.
“Michael Jordan saved my life once,” he said. “It was during the 1995 playoffs, Chicago vs. Charlotte, after a practice at the arena in Charlotte.
“He was walking out of the building with a group of reporters following. Walking backwards, I was leading the pack, with my tape recorder in his face, interviewing as we walked. I was a foot from walking off the loading dock at the back of the arena, about a 10 foot fall onto concrete, when he reached out and grabbed my arm to stop me from going over the edge.
“So when I say that I have an interest in Jordan, I mean it.”
It’s so fortunate that his genuine interest in Jordan has resulted in this definitive biography. If they gave out rings for such things, like they do for NBA champs, Roland would get one for MICHAEL JORDAN: THE LIFE.
You hear it all the time. We Americans are a hard-working people, a work-obsessed, productivity-driven nation.
Yes and no. Or, for you and me as individuals, maybe just no.
The following “5” come from a Washington Postarticle by Brigid Schulte. Working too hard costs us, and Schulte isn’t talking dollars. Here, according to Schulte’s reporting, is what Americans get for their “too hard” work:
“Americans spend almost twice as much on health care per person than people in other advanced nations … ” (according to the National Research Council and Institute of Medicine).
We’re the richest nation in the world, and also the most anxious, according to the World Health Organization.
The heavy stress affects brain volumes, according to a study by the Yale Stress Center.
“The United States ranks toward the bottom of the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development’s work-life balance scale.”
Gallup estimated that 70 percent of Americans are disengaged from their jobs. So, while our productivity may look pretty stellar as a country, our productivity per hour of work is not especially great.
“So yes, America, work hard,” writes Schulte.
“Hoo-ah American ingenuity, gumption and drive. But remember that inspiration comes in the shower, on a walk, in a moment of rest, not when your nose is to the grindstone. It’s just the way our brains are wired.”