Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

BOOK REVIEW The Joy of Swimming
by Terri Schlichenmeyer
2016-09-07

This article shared 1065 times since Wed Sep 7, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


By Lisa Congdon $18.95; Chronicle Books; 141 pages

People say you're all wet.

Maybe that's not the nicest thing you've ever heard but hey! If something's true, it's true, right? Yep, you love being in a pool, lake, pond, the ocean, a puddle, it doesn't matter. And in The Joy of Swimming, by Lisa Congdon, you'll meet like-minded people in swimsuits.

At the tender age of 8, Congdon learned to love swimming when her mother signed her up for swim team near their California home. It was fun, but it was work, and her interest in swimming declined: life got in the way, school demanded time, injuries happened. It wasn't until college, after she came out as a lesbian, that Congdon resumed the sport in earnest, and it connected her to the better parts of her life.

Swimmers, as she shows in this book, come in all shapes, sizes, and ages. Gertrude Ederle, for instance, was just 20 years old when she swam the English Channel in under 15 hours, a record she held for a quarter-century. Johnny Weissmuller, who later played Tarzan in the movies, was the first person to swim the 100-meter freestyle in less than a minute. Roxanne Winston thinks more Black swimmers should "feel inspired to join the sport." Kimberly Chambers almost lost her leg to "a freak accident," but she still swims. Chel Micheline finds that being in the water frees her from spina bifida.

But swimming isn't just about a cool dip in the lake: dog-paddling can be embarrassing ( unless, of course, you're a dog! ), so you'll want to know a few basic strokes, the science behind and the history of which Congdon explains. You'll learn a "very brief history" of swimming pools here, too, including where the largest one is located; you'll read an itsy-bitsy bio on the bikini; and you'll get quick facts on swimming and the Olympics.

Find out why you'll want to cover your eyes if you visit an Icelandic locker room. See how even Michael Phelps is slow, compared to a sailfish. Get the real definition of a "swimming hole." And find out why some people take bandages along when visiting a public pool in Japan.

Seriously, can you ever have a summer without at least one great big cannonball, dead-center in the water? If your answer is to the negative, then The Joy of Swimming is a perfect poolside book for you.

Using old ads, interviews, and her own drawings as illustration, author Lisa Congdon offers readers a bit of quirk for their deck chair. This has the feel of a sketch book or a haphazardly kept scrapbook with mini-memoirs of the famous and never-famous, trivia, Olympic facts, statistics and random thoughts. That messiness is really appealing, and you'll come to love this book after a few laps around its pages.

Dip your toes in if you dare, or just dive right in. The water's fine, and so is this book; for mermaid, athlete, or mere fans of the old waterin' hole, The Joy of Swimming will make a big splash.

Want more? Then look for Find a Way, by Diana Nyad; or Breaking the Surface, by Eric Marcus and Greg Louganis.


This article shared 1065 times since Wed Sep 7, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Bulls, Blackhawks lose; Lightfoot-Fire FC link 2022-12-01
- The Chicago Bulls (9-12) fell to the Phoenix Suns (15-6) 132-113 in Arizona on Nov. 30, dropping the Bulls to 12th in the Eastern Conference. Phoenix now leads the Western Conference. Devin Booker scored 51 for ...


Gay News

Book censorship focus of public comments at Lincolnwood Public Library Board of Trustees meeting 2022-11-30
- During the closed door portion of the regularly scheduled Lincolnwood Public Library Board of Trustees meeting Nov. 28 at Lincolnwood Village Hall, Library Defense members hosted a Freadom Book Swap outside of the building. Library Defense ...


Gay News

VIEWPOINT What are the most banned books: take a guess 2022-11-18
- The Latin word for book is liber. It is also the Latin word for "free," as in not a slave but a person who enjoys freedom (liberty). The word library means a home for books, a place of liberation, a sacred ...


Gay News

Opinion: What are the most banned books? Take a guess. 2022-11-14
- The Latin word for book is liber. It is also the Latin word for "free," as in not a slave but a person who enjoys freedom (liberty). The word library means a home for books, a place of liberation, a sacred ...


Gay News

Five Worth Finding: COVID book, 'Wicked' cocktails, 'A Taste of Hope' and more 2022-10-24
- —COVID-19, the LGBTQIA+ Community and Public Policy: As studies emerge to help us understand the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on every facet of modern life, it is critical that the effect of the pandemic on ...


Gay News

LGBTQ+ HISTORY MONTH bell hooks: A voice of love, activism and intersectionality 2022-10-22
- When bell hooks died on Dec. 15, 2021, it was a gut punch. There was no time when bell hooks' extraordinary writing and feminist and lesbian theorizing was not part of the queer community. There was ...


Gay News

Former Chicago Ald. Helen Shiller hosts book launch and reception 2022-10-20
- Publishing house Haymarket Books presented a book-signing and interview session with longtime LGBTQ+ ally and former Chicago Ald. Helen Shiller on Oct. 17. Shiller was interviewed by noted Chicago Tribune ...


Gay News

BOOKS Lesbian co-author discusses 'No More Police: A Case for Abolition' 2022-10-18
- "We don't need all the answers to start down the road toward where we want to go: a world where everyone has safety, food, clean water, shelter, education, health, art, beauty, and rest."—No More Police: A ...


Gay News

Gerber/Hart Library and Archives holds 'Unboxing Queer History LIVE' fall benefit 2022-10-17
- Gerber/Hart Library and Archives (Gerber/Hart) held its fall benefit, "Unboxing Queer History LIVE!," on Oct. 15 at Gerber/Hart to raise funds in support of the library's mission to preserve LGBTQ+ history in Chicago and the Midwest. ...


Gay News

BOOKS 'Last Call Chicago' release party held at Sidetrack 2022-10-13
- On Oct. 12, co-authors Rick Karlin and St. Sukie de la Croix held a book-release party for their book, Last Call Chicago: A History of 1,001 LGBTQ-Friendly Taverns, Haunts & Hangouts. Last Call Chicago is a ...


Gay News

OutHistory reveals discovery in LGBTQ+ history: identity of pioneering LGBTQ+ author Jennie June 2022-10-12
-- From a press release - New York, NY—Oct. 10, 2022—In celebration of LGBTQ+ History Month, the website OutHistory announced a groundbreaking discovery: the probable identity of Jennie June, the pioneering LGBTQ+ author who bravely defended ...


Gay News

LGBTQ+ HISTORY MONTH San Francisco Public Library digitizes LGBTQ+ archives, including Harvey Milk holdings 2022-10-09
LGBTQ+ HISTORY MONTH - Shot with black-and-white film, two small children stand outside in a San Francisco public plaza draped in protest signs. One reads, "We're Proud, Not Stigmatized." The other declares, "We Love Our Gay Parents." In the right ...


Gay News

BOOKS David Sedaris returns to the Raue Center on Nov. 4 2022-10-06
- Best-selling author David Sedaris will return to the Crystal Lake venue the Raue Center on Friday, Nov. 4, at 8 p.m. The openly gay humor writer is known for books such as Calypso, Theft By Finding, ...


Gay News

BOOKS Events related to 'Last Call Chicago' on Oct. 10 and 12 2022-10-03
- Last Call Chicago: A History of 1,001 LGBTQ-Friendly Taverns, Haunts & Hangouts is a historical account of LGBTQ+ venues in the Windy City. The book's authors, Rick Karlin and St. Sukie de la Croix, are journalists ...


Gay News

LGBT HISTORY MONTH 'Memory Book' details history of 1970s-era LGBTQ+ attorneys in U.S. 2022-10-01
- Stephen Lachs remembers the 1970s as being a particularly wonderful era in the history of the LGBTQ+-liberation movement. Lachs, 83, was the first out LGBTQ+ person appointed to a judgeship in the United States. Tapped by ...


 




Copyright © 2022 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor


 

Sponsor


Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.