Lately, my reporting and research has taken me places I never imagined I would go as a sports writer. Like into the mind of a streaker and inside the research of a group of quantum physicists.
For a story on blacklisted fans and the heads of stadium who chase them (out in our List Issue in two weeks!), I’ve spent hours learning the ins and outs of streaking (at a baseball game, sit on the first baseline, in one of the first two rows … carry a spare pair of shorts … make sure you’re okay with that being the last game you ever attend), stadium ops and what motivates people to act in a way they would never dream of acting in the real world once they are inside their favorite team’s home. It’s been an informative and comical few weeks and I think this will be a fun read for anyone, even if you don’t give a hoot about sports.
For a story on the placebo effect in sports and the power of belief, I’ve spent countless hours twisting my brain around concepts like cell biology and quantum physics and how our thoughts affect our bodies. I’ve spoken to neuroscientists, neurophysicists, energy healers, psychologists, biomedical engineers, quantum physicists, cell biologists and physical therapists. I leave every conversation feeling a little bit smarter and a little closer to my story, but with a list of questions I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to answer. Soon, I need to be able to explain to readers in clear, concise language why a neuroscientist and a quantum physicist might have more knowledge about how to make an athlete jump higher, run farther and pitch better than the best illegal PED manufacturers in the business.
If I only had six words, I’d write this: “Simple: It’s all in your mind.”