The Stacks: When Mike Royko Roared
A classic profile of the cantankerous but lovable Chicago newspaper columnist Mike Royko.
Introducing “The Stacks”
As we enjoy the current wave of expansive non-fiction writing—call it longform, takeouts, bonus pieces, what’s in a name?—now is a fine time to revive stories that have been lost to us. Stories that are tucked away from our consciousness simply because they don’t exist online, not because they don’t hold up as pieces of writing. I’ve been reprinting choice material on my blog Bronx Banter for five years now and I’m not alone in my thirst for the classics of the form. The good people at Longform and Byliner and Long Reads provide us with killer material regularly.
Last year, I started The Stacks for Deadspin as a kind of living archive of memorable sports writing. I’d accumulated dozens of pieces through the years, most of them found in the microfilm room of the New York Public Library. And as these things go, one story leads to another, one writer introduces you to a half-dozen more, your world expands, life is richer. There’s no fun in keeping it to yourself. The point is to share the wealth.