John Turnbull


John Turnbull is a journalist, editor, graduate of the School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University, a one-time seminarian and doctoral student in Hebrew Bible. He has contributed to When Saturday Comes (London), So Foot (Paris), the New York Times Goal blog, Soccer and Society, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, World Literature Today and Afriche e Orienti and is coeditor, with Thom Satterlee and Alon Raab, of The Global Game: Writers on Soccer (University of Nebraska Press, 2008).

I notice that authors, angling for the dungareed authenticity of Woody Guthrie‘s boxcar-riding days, also include in their bios lists of odd jobs.

So I mention that I have washed dishes at a U.S. Navy cafeteria, watered, rolled, swept and lined clay tennis courts, caddied, filed and reproduced hospital electrocardiograms, installed dance floors above outdoor swimming pools, erected tents for the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, operated the 18th-hole scoreboard at the PGA’s Kemper Open, counseled Boy Scouts as a wilderness-camp chaplain (where I also proctored the archery range), coordinated phone banks and financial reporting for a member of the D.C. City Council, failed a Central Intelligence Agency security clearance, compiled Georgia’s statewide high school football results, administered precincts during the 2000 and 2004 presidential primary and general election cycles, and supervised a crew of U.S. census enumerators. In the early 1990s I also reported firsthand on an outbreak of wedgies that swept secondary education on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, for which I earned no awards.

For personal essays and jottings, go to this site.

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