Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Century Club, Among Other Things

As you certainly already know, because you are a superfan, this is my 100th post here at David Roth, The Writer. Which means that I have now officially had 100 excellent thoughts -- thoughts about Guy Fieri and John Schnatter and libertarians and the "Ground Zero" "Mosque" (Oh man, remember that? CLASSIC SUMMER BIGOTRY!) and writing for no money and Frighteningly Nutty Sitcom Actors and terrible things and awful, awful David Brooks and so on. All of them excellent, all of them (apparently) worth the getting-deep-like-a-Navy-SEAL treatment. Which is to say: I guess I've been doing things at this address for a minute, now, although I'm still not exactly sure what I'm doing with it. I do know that I'm probably taking it a bit more seriously than I should.

I know that because the knowledge that this was my 100th post has kept me from writing anything here for awhile, because it Had To Be Good. Which is generally a good impulse, I suppose -- this sort of constructive self-consciousness is the thing that separates humans from Thomas Friedman -- but which also meant that I would periodically stare at a blank screen here, knowing that I should write something Totally Epic and Withering about a three-week old (but very terrible) feature story about evil prosciutto/New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (right), but also feeling tired and being busy and so on. And while I could easily fill my days writing about how sleepy, fatuous elites need to stop fluffing this graceless and cruelly cynical human hot pocket, I also know that that's not what this blog was for.

It was, almost a year ago, an attempt on my part to be professional, put all my stuff in one place, and do simultaneously a little plumage-flashing -- "I don't just write about sports, I also make fun of Paula Deen!" -- and some self-promoting. Which I guess I've done, but which I've also probably done too sporadically and (shock) in too prolix and off-topic a way to serve its desired purpose. What was supposed to be something I could put on a resume instead became, like, a blog. It's one with links to all my recent publications in the right-hand column (check it out, it's just to the right of these words!), but it's also a blog that I use the way people use blogs. I like it in that way, but also, really now. Really.

But also: really, it's nice to have a space to write about what I want to write about. I'm kind of past the "fuck an editor, it was perfect when I first thought it" stage in my life -- I make exceptions, periodically -- but given the stresses of trying to sell things, I suppose giving it away for free and enjoying the freedom from expectations that comes with that is maybe a healthy thing. And when someone calls me and says they want me to write a weekly column that is really a transcribed Gchat conversation about why so many Food Network personalities look like photographic negatives or freaky cartoons and yell all the time, I'm sure as hell going to be warmed up.

So yeah, 100 posts in a little under 365 days, and a 101st and so on in due time. I don't know that I'll use this space more effectively or responsibly in the future, but I know that I'll keep using it, and appreciate those of you who -- for whatever reason -- read it. (The Blogger stats thing suggests that, oddly and improbably, there are actually a few dozen of youse, which really reflects more on you than it does on me) I will also now use this post to promote something I wrote for The Awl about a week ago on the NFL Labor Apocalypse, which stars the adorable Jerry Richardson (he's the evil deflated Gingrich above). I'm happy with the piece, and think it's a good example of my work with The Awl over the past months, and that's why I'm putting it at the bottom of a 600-word post about myself and how I use my blog. I am really figuring this out!

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