The One-Size-Fits-All Sock That’s a Democratic Fashion Statement

Originally Marketed as Sportswear, the Tube Sock Became a Stylish Accessory Thanks to Farrah Fawcett and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

If you’re an American down to your toes, those toes have probably been clad in tube socks at one time or another.

These once-ubiquitous, one-size-fits-all socks are a product of Americans’ simultaneous love of sports, technological innovation, and nostalgic fashion statements.

The tube sock’s trajectory is knitted into the growth of organized sports in America, particularly basketball and soccer, both of which were popularized around the turn of the century. Basketball was a new and uniquely American diversion, played in YMCAs and school gymnasiums, while soccer was a centuries-old tradition imported …

To Black Athletes, Donald Trump Is Playing the Dozens

This Time, the Age-Old Game of Exchanging Insults Will Have No Winner

President Donald Trump did not say, “Yo’ mama!” in front of a partisan Huntsville, Alabama audience. But he might as well have because that is what athletes heard directed at …

How Irish American Athletes Slugged Their Way to Respectability

Sportsmen with Roots in the Emerald Isle Reshaped the Image of the Shantytown Ruffian

In his 1888 book The Ethics of Boxing and Manly Sport, a high-minded treatise on the ennobling effect of sports, the journalist, poet, and Irish exile John Boyle O’Reilly …

Why India’s Women Olympians Remind Me of My Father

A Delhi School Principal Was Early to Champion Sports for Girls, a Commitment That's Still Bearing Fruit

It’s been nearly 10 years since my father died, but watching Indian athletes at the Rio Olympics has brought his memory rushing back to me.

When I was a child, …

Will Environmental Crises Segregate Sports?

Snowless Mountains and Poisoned Beaches Will Drive a Wedge Between Athletes of Different Classes

In Brazil, Olympic rowers and sailors will chase gold through dying rivers and poisoned lagoons. Even amid all the crises piling up on this year’s games—unfinished infrastructure, political drama, financial …

L.A.’s Athletic Ambitions Are Faster, Higher, Stronger

The '84 Olympic Games Were a Huge Success, 2024 Would Be the Greatest Ever

I am very excited about the Los Angeles’ 21st-century bid to host the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games. My excitement is not just about the stadiums that will fill to …