This has nothing to do with sports or leisure. I was reading Uwe Johnson's Jahrestage, a story that is told like a diary over the course of one year, August 1967 to August 1968. Everyday the protagonist reads snippets from The New York Times; just random news from the front page, usually about the "conflict" in Vietnam or the "Negro riots." I wanted to translate this particular one for you, because it mentions John McCain. And it brings up an issue that no one mentions these days: the fact that McCain was conducting a napalm air raid when he was shot down.
Background: Johnson's Jahrestage is a 1,800-page tome released in four volumes in 1971, 1973, 1975, and 1985. The English translation by Helen Wolff, Anniversaries, was released in two parts in 1975 and 1987. It's abridged and doesn't include any information for the day I'm translating here (the English translation leaves out a lot of the news snippets that the protagonist reads in The Times - maybe it's a copyright issue). The main character is an East German defector who lives in New York with her daughter, reads the "Auntie Times" everyday, and thinks about a new way, thinks about the past, and thinks and thinks and thinks some more.
October 28, 1967 Saturday
John Sidney McCain III was shot down over Hanoi. In July he had witnessed the fire aboard the aircraft carrier Forrestal. After he had seen, in his words, 'what the explosions and napalm had done to our men on the ship, I'm not so sure that I would ever be able to drop the stuff over North Viet Nam myself.' But he was doing just that and Radio Hanoi reported his capture yesterday.
The rest of October 28, 1967, is spent with the main character Gesine reading about a memory experiment conducted at Princeton in which the participants demonstrated the ease of forgetting. As for our collective memory, it seems we have forgotten a lot ourselves. No one talks about napalm raids anymore. Only war heroes.