WINNER: Best Blog Entry Written By Me Today


Well, welly well.  It’s another episode of The Scene v. The Bloggers.  Is this what we’ve been reduced to?  Can somebody find me a worthy adversary?  Like the Man in the Black Pajamas, for example.  Worthy fuckin’ adversary, Dude.

First off, let’s get the whole "awards" deal out of the way.   Or, in this case, Senior Superlatives.  Yeah, Mothership didn’t win Best Barbecue.  Whitt’s won.  Again.  Whitt’s.  Folks are you kidding me with this weak shit?  Whitt’s?  Jack’s kicks the pig shit out of Whitt’s.  The Paradise Ridge Grill on Charlotte Pike is better than Whitt’s.  Oh, right.  I forgot this was the same readership that votes for Olive Garden as best Eye-talian.  South Park was right last night, about 25% of the population is retarded. 

The real axe to grind is with the Editor’s Picks.  Or more accurately,  "People Lucky Enough to Have Had One of Us Run Across Them Over the Course of the Past Year in Our Professional or Personal Lives".

Nemesisboy and Mark Mays/Gandalf Mantooth/King Dork both got shout outs.  That’s fine.  They don’t suck.  Mark has a good blog and I respect his stuff.  Best in Town?  I dunno.  I don’t really get Nemesisboy.  I mean I see where he is supposed to be funny and all, but it just falls flat with me.  Kind of like Carrot Top. 

The picks themselves aren’t so much the problem, as was the snotty way in which they were presented.

The easiest test to measure the sanity and influence of a blogger is to examine the tone with which they write. Histrionics, exaggerations and braying political proclamations are signs of overwhelming self-importance and an easy way to ruin a thirst for knowledge. Which is why Dork Nation is one of the best out there. I knew him as a father, a critic, a political operative and a fashion plate long before I’d even heard that he had a blog. Reading his blog is like having a pleasant conversation; wry and opinionated, but like talking at the same table, rather than being yelled at from across the room.

Like I said, I like Mark.  Among the things I like about his blog and his comments throughout everyone else’s, is the histrionics, exaggerations and braying political proclamations and overwhelming signs of self-importance.  The man is constantly yelling from across the room.  Usually to call me a racist.

And when Nemesisboy showed up at a local blogger meet-up in a Darth Vader mask, some bloggers were miffed—proof that intelligence has nothing to do with sense of humor.

Uh, ok.  According to the people who were actually there that night, no one was "miffed."  I totally admit after meeting him in his Darth Vader mask, that I went off on a "I don’t get what is funny about that guy" rant.   But I’m a cranky old jerk who hates children, animals and old people.  I felt like putting some candy in his bag and telling him to get off my porch.  But miffed isn’t really an accurate characterization.

The bit that really hit the wrong note was the resurrection of some goofball hipster shit.  It kind of reminds me of the old zen koan; if you shoot a hipster doofus in the head in the forest, and no one is there with a T-Mobile Sidekick, did it really happen? 

Rest assured, Nashvillians, we’ll never, ever be like New York or Los Angeles. Proof of that was the reaction a few months back to news of, the invite-only social networking site that sent local bloggers cowering back to face their deepest, darkest high-school insecurities. “But, aren’t I cool?” they wondered. “Probably not,” Buddytown answered back. The Buddytown motto, “No douche bags,” and their monthly beautiful-people vibed parties at Ombi Bar, incited all manner of online riots about the elitism of the velvet rope. What no one realized: that you could get an invite by simply asking for one. What would have pissed them off more: learning that the City Council, the site’s ruling body, routinely purges users on the site they deem uncool.

Yawn.  I’m sorry.  I took a nap during that paragraph.  I still remember when this was boring four months ago.  A large majority of the bloggers who have piped up about that, aren’t pissed about Buddytown’s gated community policies.  They get pissed about the continual high school cheap shots and tired references to bloggers not having real jobs.  Like jobs where you can wear a vintage KISS t-shirt and a pair of Chuck Taylor All-Stars to, I guess.

It hit me yesterday that the Scene is to the bloggers what the Boston Beer Company is to the home brewers.

There is a condescending and patronizing tone that the Sam Adams brewer feels towards the guy who has brewed his first batch of ale.  Although, they aren’t truly competitors, the home brewer could possibly catch lightning in a carboy, and one day become a threat to BBC’s bottom line.

The cooking up beer at home dude looks towards the Master Brewer at BBC for inspiration and a certain amount of approval.  Being an authority counts for something, right?  After all, the guy working for Sam Adams DOES have a business card and a shirt with his name on it.  He MUST know what he is talking about when he says your home-made beer sucks.

After the home brewer gets some experience making his own, he realizes that he can read the same books and understand the same concepts just as well as Mr. Big Corporate Brewery can.  The opinion of the Master Brewer starts to mean a little less.

Pretty soon, the home brewer wouldn’t dream of buying shitty and bland Sam Adams.  He makes his own and trades with fellow home brewers when they have good, flavorful and unique stuff to quaff.

One day the Master Brewer gets a call from the sales department, "Hey, do you know why our sales are down?"

The Master Brewer say, "Nope, not a clue."

Just to keep it fair, I have to admit that beating up on the Scene for being lame, predictable and cliche has unfortunately become lame, predictable and cliche.  But they keep asking for it.

I picked up this week’s issue because of this little popularity contest and to see where my friends, like Knucklehead, wound up in the voting.

Next week we go back to our regularly ignoring of that increasingly moribund publication. 


12 Responses to “WINNER: Best Blog Entry Written By Me Today”

  1. Mack Says:

    <i>Kind of like Carrot Top. </i> nuff said.I have this love/hate thing with the Scene. I think they cover stuff in depth that the Tennessean couldn’t and wouldn’t. I surely wouldn’t call it an alternative newspaper in my understanding of that phrase, but, it is in fact the only alternative to the two rags that pose as newspapers in Nashville. It is also cliche’ to dismiss bloggers as navel;-gazers, as clearly there are some very topical, well-written blogs in town. We are also seeing more and more emphasis be placed on blog traffic, I believe someone has done the math. That said, bloggers run the risk of becoming smaller versions of the smug, self congratulatory parts of the Scene. Online cliques are elitist too. I’m relatively new to Nasahville, so I was excited to get an invite to the "Best of" party, and, well, yawn. Nice place, some good nibbles, and free wine/beer, but I’d never call it a party. Bet I don’t ever get invited again…

  2. Sarcastro Says:

    That has been my experience at the Best of parties as well.As far as smug, self-congratulatory, elitist cliques among the bloggers, we are already there.

  3. Katherine Coble Says:

    I didn’t know I could be a clique on my own. But since I’m the best…go me!!!

  4. Exador Says:

    It sounds like The Scene is EXACTLY like Atlanta’s Creative Loafing.Every year, they come out with their "Best Of" edition. I read it and say, Ugh. "Best Of" really means you kissed their ass enough.

  5. Rachel Says:

    "supposed to be funny and all, but it just falls flat with me" – Me, too.

  6. nm Says:

    Of course it sounds just like Creative Loafing. They’re owned by the same company (as are most of the "alt" weeklies in the country) which has a defined corporate style. In that sense, there is no difference between them and any Gannett newspaper.

  7. SistaSmiff Says:

    Carrot Top…where in the hell did his big muscles come from? They make him even funnier looking now, along with his tattooed on eyebrows. Is he one of them homosackshuls?

  8. Michael Says:

    The thing with humor is it can be subjective. And maybe to the Scene people the bloggers they single out are hysterical. To me, I don’t find them that funny…I feel as if they are trying too hard to get attention and feel cool. The thing is–I’ve been to journalism school and I can tell you the attitude of "we are better" does exist. It may be why I didn’t really make it far in that world–that and liking to eat on a regular basis. So many journalists are like starving artists that they have to be snarky to cover up the fact that they make two dollars a day….cause most papers don’t pay squat. Or that you’ve got ot have 12 jobs to make rent.I ran into a journalism school friend in Knoxville who told me I’d sold out becuase I worked for a company that both paid well and had benefits. She was workign three jobs but she was writing and that made her better…Yeah….ohkay then…

  9. Katherine Coble Says:

    And how much worse then, if your esteem is tied up in writing (big mistake) to see "just anybody" doing it and doing it well?The sad truth about writing is that it takes talent and practice, but not necessarily a degree. And I suspect a lot of folks who invested in the degree might be a bit sore.

  10. Sarcastro Says:

    This blog stands as a monument to the fact that talent and practice are not necessarily constitutive to writing.

  11. saraclark Says:

    I appreciated getting my "invite" printed on a t-shirt. If I wear it around town after the party-is that like a concert souvenir t-shirt? Will I be cool? Will that let everybody know that I was part of their clique?Nice try. Just one more freebie to wash the car with. I had no interest in going.

  12. brittney Says:

    I watched Lost instead. Carter got my t-shirt.

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