Ultimate Glory: Frisbee, Obsession, and My Wild Youth by David Gessner

Into the Wild

Read Ultimate Glory: Frisbee, Obsession, and My Wild Youth Online Free - A story of obsession, glory, and the wild early days of Ultimate Frisbee.

Before he made a name for himself as an acclaimed essayist and nature writer, David Gessner devoted his twenties to a cultish sport called Ultimate Frisbee. Like his teammates and rivals, he trained for countless hours, sacrificing his body and potential career for a chance at fleeting glory without fortune or fame. His only goal: to win Nationals and go down in Ultimate history as one of the greatest athletes no one has ever heard of.

Today Ultimate is played by millions of people around the world, with professional teams in more than two dozen cities. In the 1980s, it was an obscure sport with a (mostly) undeserved stoner reputation. Its early heroes, key players like Kenny Dobyns, Steve Mooney, Tom Kennedy, and David Barkan, were as scrappy as the sport they loved, driven by fierce competition, intense rivalries, epic parties, and the noble ideals of the Spirit of the Game.

Ultimate Glory
is a portrait of the artist as a young ruffian. Driven by ambition, whimsy, love, and vanity, Gessner lives for those moments when he loses himself completely in the game. He shares the field and his seemingly insane obsession with a cast of closely knit, larger-than-life characters. As his sport grows up, so does he, and eventually he gives up chasing flying discs to pursue a career as a writer. But he never forgets his love for this misunderstood sport and the rare sense of purpose he attained as a member of its priesthood.

Title : Ultimate Glory: Frisbee, Obsession, and My Wild Youth
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 073521056X
Edition Language : English
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 352 pages


Ron rated it ★★★★☆

June 18, 2017

"Isn't that the thing you do with dogs?" Not so much. Environmental writer and essayist Gessner details the rise of Ultimate, a somewhat modified form of football played with Frisbees, which he stumbled into in the early days of the sport. As much a memoir of Gessner's struggles to become a write...

Layne rated it ★★★☆☆

August 18, 2017

I appreciated receiving the book as a gift from someone who knows my love of ultimate. Ultimate Glory is a tromp through Gessner's formative years as the title suggests. His devotion to the sport and it's role in his life is evident in the rich details of the games and the players that built the...

Jim rated it ★★★★★

July 02, 2017

I loved this book! David Gessner captures perfectly the conflicting inner glories and insecurities of 1980s era Ultimate players. We were playing the Greatest Sport of All Time, while being dismissed by colleagues, friends and family for pursuing a passion Gessner rightly compares, in the minds o...

David rated it ★★★★★

July 17, 2017

terrific read. mostly a memoir of his 20s and early 30s as a very serious [in those days there were no professionals] ultimate player, working part-time and temp jobs and living in group houses to keep most of his time free to train. Played on excellent teams that competed regularly at national c...

Christian rated it ★★★★☆

December 31, 2017

I'd read some of Gessner's chapters more than a decade before he brought them together in this book. (notably, "I Had a Notion," about teammate Nathan Salwen and his own relation with his father). His writing uniquely captures what it is to play this particular amateur sport at a national competi...

amy rated it ★★★☆☆

August 18, 2017

Here's one lens on ultimate; there are so many more. Reading this has helped me articulate my own experience with the sport, in part through contrast. For example, Gessner and many of his peers seem to have been able to bring their whole, messy selves to the sport in ways that others haven't. My...

Patty rated it ★★★★☆

July 05, 2017

I am not an Ultimate player, but I live with one (and he has played for 30+ years). This book is combination of a history of the sport, a history of the author's involvement with the sport, and an accounting of the author's life outside of Ultimate (as if that's possible). It's engaging and infor...

Gabe rated it ★★★★☆

November 10, 2017

This was a great book because it really connected with me. A guy growing up in Boston, really into ultimate and trying to figure out how to balance that with pursuing a career. I would recommend it to anyone who plays ultimate, but don't think it would be very intriguing to someone outside the sp...

Leigh rated it ★★★★☆

August 10, 2017

A memoir that's heavy on Ultimate history, or an overly personal sports history book, depending on how you look at it. The writer confides early that the book, in some part, is an effort to salvage an abortive first effort at writing such a history. His generous style make it work, however, even...

Marissa rated it ★★★★★

November 21, 2017

A memoir and history of the sport of Ultimate Frisbee with an emphasis on the Northeast and the rivalry between the New York and Boston club teams. I found it to be generously written. The author reveals some truths of his young adulthood and the maturation, however suspended, he experienced thro...

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