Tidewater Times May 2021

Page 99

Hyperbole by A.M. Foley

The hype over sporting events comes at us year-round: March Madness from October into April, the Triple Crown and odds of one horse winning, baseball’s World (read: U.S.) Series, Super Bowl LSomething. The actual event rarely equals the pre-event hype. But for contrast between build-up and outcome, nothing beats the justly

forgotten 1849 “First Heavyweight Championship” bout, fought on the shore of Chesapeake Bay. Combatants were billed as Tom “Young America” Hyer vs. James “Yankee” Sullivan. Every label exaggerated reality, starting with “heavyweight.” Hyer might have qualified as a heavyweight, but Sullivan, at an estimated 150


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