FROM THE BOOKSHELF: Bad at Sports

Bad at Sports

The Bad at Sports main page.

Happy Monday, everyone! (My vote is that it’s happy; it’s cooler, at any rate, and that’s wonderful.) Today on From the Bookshelf, I admit that I have never possessed any intention of this column being a strictly hard-copy operation. Notice how I haven’t actually touched on any hard copy books yet*, for this week is all about Bad at Sports, a podcast entity out of Chicago with a killer blog companion. So consider this a two-for-one blog with “audiobook” counterpart, if you’re taking score at home. (Although, if you are: what wait why?)

From a purely pragmatic standpoint, Bad at Sports is just really frigging useful. Even if you don’t live in Chicago (and more on that later), the blog and podcast is full of great interviews with awesome artists, humor about the art world, actual pragmatic advice about the art world (but with some winks — Bad at Sports is nothing if not delightfully tongue-in-cheek), and a fount of fantastic reports for call for entry moments for artists. As one of their members so cheerfully mentioned** to me on Twitter, Bad at Sports is out to help fellow artists in this rocky, bumpy world of constant clamoring for constant exposure.¬†And I mean, that’s pretty gnarly, especially given that I’d like to think of myself as a similar individual in a similar boat doing a similar thing on this very blog. Which, okay, Bad at Sports already does this and does it far better than I, but it’s good to have goals for yourself. (And besides, Naptown needs some help on this front. I want to help!)

Now, to the Chicago thing: although they have awesome East, West, and European correspondents for each podcast, Bad at Sports is very much a Chicago gig and has the weekly promotions of awesome Chicagoland shows, artist opportunities, and artist interviews to prove it. On a recent podcast, I heard from them was from Ken Fandell and and Christy Matson (former SAIC professors), who discussed (among other things) their life in Chicago and their subsequent decision to move to the West Coast. In this discussion, they compared and contrasted the tone of the New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles art scenes. Fandell and Matson’s general consensus was that Chicago’s artists band together and thickly so due to Chicago’s primary interest as a sports town at heart. This simultaneously sounded awfully familiar, Naptown, and shot Chicago to the top in terms of aspirational places-to-go-and-maybe-live-and-work. But we’ll see how grad school plans that out for me, yeah?

Anyway: Bad at Sports. Add them to your blog line-up. Enjoy their crass mouths. Oh, and hey, maybe possibly visit them at their residency at Columbia College Chicago? It’s ending soon and they’re supposed to have a rad closing reception, so check that out!

Anyway: like the recommendation? Hate it? Indifferent to it? Want to talk about how you really do think the Colts are a better topic than all this artsy-fartsy shit and those Chicago people had it right about this neck of the woods being full of sports towns? Send me a message in the comments!

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* Next week, my friends. Maybe. Possibly.

** This is totally paraphrased. Sorry, nice Tweeter at Bad at Sports.

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