Jeff Pearlman

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Kwanzaa

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My post office sells Kwanzaa stamps.

My local TV station wishes everyone a merry Christmas, a happy Chanukah and a fruitful Kwanzaa.

My daughter learns about Kwanzaa in school.

But does anyone celebrate it?

I’m not asking this as some Archie Bunker-esque character trying to get things straight in the world? I’m asking this as a guy who lives in one of the most multicultural cities in America; who grew up with different races; who majored in history (with an emphasis on Afro-centric issues) … and who has never met a single person who celebrates Kwanzaa.

It sounds like a fine holiday—but even www.kwanzaa.com barely celebrates Kwanzaa. I guess part of the problem is it was only founded in the 1960, according to a couple of websites, which makes it the babe of holidays. Generally speaking, I think people probably prefer holidays established by dead people or churches. It adds some oomph to the whole thing; as if the spirits are guiding us toward the tree.

Anyhow, Happy Kwanzaa.

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Once again, Jeff Pearlman has produced an exhaustively researched, elegantly written book that re-creates one of the most colorful and memorable teams of the modern era. No basketball fan's bookshelf will be complete without it.

— Seth Davis, author of Wooden: A Coach's Life