“Exquisite, clear-minded writing. Sharply told stories that touch the soul. Tom Cheche’s Exit 10 is a book every lover of sports and each person of a certain age will read more than once and be warmed anew each time”
−Bruce Valley, Author, Seahawk: Confessions of an Old Hockey Goalie
Tom Cheche’s career as a broadcast and newspaper reporter took him into the locker rooms of the NBA and the NHL, to pit road at Daytona, and Gasoline Alley at Indianapolis.
Exit 10: A Sporting Life Just Off the Jersey Turnpike chronicles his improbable and hilarious journey from teenage sports geek to professional sports reporter, navigating through adolescence in suburban New Jersey in the 1960s with his three accomplices—the instigator, the athlete and the saxophone player—a lunatic Gang of Four sports crazies.
With an affectionate nod to the story telling of Jean Shepherd and Calvin Trillin, the tales of Exit 10 include:
• “Gameday”—Snotty catches, pickup football with baggies in your shoes, and midnight pond hockey for lunatics.
• “Brainy Borough”—High school football misery in an Ozzie-and-Harriet kind of town.
• “Dodger Love”—And of course, Yankee hate.
• “Tracy, Krane, and Me”—The Great Shea Stadium Assault and Mets Dugout Break-in.
• “Barney & the Venders” —Or how to get a bar on Staten Island NY to sponsor your teenage softball team and keep your parents from finding out.
• “Not a Sitcom, a Documentary”—Life in small market radio, from the Asbury Park race riots to the cow in the air studio. Or, Yesterday I Couldn’t Spell Broadcaster, and Today I Are One.
• “The World Squamish League Radio Hoax”—“More than 35 years later people in Central New Jersey still remember it and mention it to me. It’s not really the sort of thing you want to be remembered for.” A prank perpetrated at a now-defunct radio station, that ballooned into a full-blown hoax.
Exit 10: A Sporting Life Just off the Jersey Turnpike is a sports memoir for Everyman, a New Jersey memoir, and a coming of age tale for guys who never made the varsity but grew up anywhere in America, dreaming of what it would be like to see professional sports up close.
“It was my bad luck to miss meeting my very comical, slightly crazy friend Tom Cheche until the latter stages of his Jersey sports odyssey, but, man, after reading Exit 10 I felt like I was along for the entire uproarious ride from Metuchen to the broadcast booth, to Madison Square Garden. What a trip!”
–Bob Boyles, Co-author, The USA Today College Football Encyclopedia