Bob Hodge “Tales of the Times: A Runner’s Story” – YouTube
Talk followed by Q&A discussion, featuring Bob Hodge, author of Tales of the Times: A Runner’s Story (Barb’s Beer Foundation, 2019). About the Author Bob Hod…
Clinton Item Book Review:
Making a stab at prepared remarks what I got so far…..
Introductory Remarks First Author Talk Pollard Memorial Library Lowell, MA
Thursday November 12th 2020 from 7:00-8:00 PM
A Virtual Program
Born in the Acre Lowell MA on Rock Street August 1955 moved on to Sawtelle Place just around the corner off School Street over the bridge hard by the lumber company the railroad tracks Pawtucket Canal and in the shadow of the large gas tank.
Lowell Ariel View:
Youngest of the four children of Bill and Irene Hodge my eight and four year older brothers Billy and Mike took me under their fist um I mean wing and six year older sister Irene walked me to school at St Patrick’s for first grade my first taste of school after I put up too much fuss about going off to kindergarten.
Not long after starting at St Pat’s we moved once again a short ways to the corner of Butterfield and Fletcher Streets across from the North Common which became our front yard and playground.
I met my first love on the common, baseball it got me through a many a long hot summer but though we were hot and heavy for a while it didn’t last just like most things don’t and I found my true love running against my brother Billy after a large head start and around the perimeter of the common testing my willpower to see if I could hang on to a local boxer who trained there in his army boots like one of my later heroes, Emil Zatopek did in Eastern Europe.
When I joined the Cross Country Team at Lowell High School in 1969 the glossy color photos of the baseball heroes the 1967 Red Sox that we had gathered when purchasing gas for the car at Muldoon’s all came down from the bedroom walls replaced by athletes Jim Ryun and Abebe Bikila.
I also began to scour the library for books about athletics the Olympic Games and Track & Field and I learned from the librarian at the Pollard just how to locate what I was seeking using the card catalog. It was an eye opening mind altering experience.
In high school I struggled to find my way and the running helped the camaraderie the trips to races were what I looked forward to the most.
And so I was roughly formed by these few square miles of Lowell and I have always carried that with me through all of my travels my bindle stiffing wambled bimbling days.
My junior year in high school we got all uppity and moved to Centreville Fulton Street off West Sixth.
The genesis for the book came from my old running journals letters books and photographs that I have collected over the last fifty years. The 45 tales were all written as separate pieces and were never really intended to be corralled into chronological order and that shows in the finished book but I will let dear reader decide if it works or how well it does or doesn’t.
I like to think of the finished product and the writing all just an experiment for me, comparable to a dime store novel providing a bit of light entertainment and possibly a window to a different time part growing up growing old story and insight into the forces surrounding top flight athletics and those who dared to tread.
I won’t pull your coat tails too much about it.
Soundtrack: Can’t find my way home. Blind Faith:
“Tales of the Times”
Now available at the following locations:
The Silver Unicorn Bookstore:
Eight Cousins Bookstore:
Left Bank Bookstore
Copies are also available from Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Just-Call-Me-Jock-Marathon/dp/0998371203
and from the trunk of my car.