Because he can encapsulate lots of complex history into smooth prose:
As the urbanization of the world gathers speed in the 1870s, what has been a solstice holiday in origin becomes a harvest holiday in realization.
We readily accept his extended metaphors for the underground city that works in a metropolis like Montreal
The multidimensional city depends on a subway to serve as its nervous system, and a series of tunnels and walkways to serve as its connective tissue. […] when people are brought in below ground they are eager to come up above ground. You create a permeable membrane between the underworld and the overworld, all based on foot traffic — on the pedestrian, the walker, who is the city’s red blood cell, without whom the city pales and sickens and dies of anemia.
We are there with him not only because of the address to a “you” but because we can picture ourselves arriving and walking, after all by this point he has made us believe that hockey is as much a mental as a physical contact sport. Winter is his season. And we are so much the warmer for having shared his experiences and musings.
Adam Gopnik. Winter: Five Windows on the Season
And so for day 1010