Thursday, August 13, 2009

Idea 83 - The Boldest Blogger

Most of you weren't born yet, but there was a time when blogging didn't even exist. And then came a time when we bloggers were reviled -- considered laughably vain and shallow, just because we felt that our non-astute observations were worthy of other people's time. The outlook for our kind was dim -- until Harrison Tangiers came along. That's right, Harrison Tangiers. The Johnny Appleseed of bloggers:

"Hello Mother.

Yes, I'm still writing my 'little diary', as you call it.

Mother, it's known as a blog, and it's not
'little' at all. It's very important to me, and I receive nearly a thousand hits a day.

Hits, mother. Visits. Unique-- you know what? I'm not having this conversation."

Later that day, Tangiers' on-screen index finger shook as it hovered above the "publish post" button. Was it really worth it? Why commit oneself to so much ridicule? What if my boss finds out? A silent tear escaped his clenched eyelids, only to die a tiny death on his Alf mousepad.

His mother's dismissive, uninterested tone echoed that of nearly everyone in his life.
Bit by bit, insult by insult, they had eroded his will to update '', his accessibly snarky account of life in the offices of one of the world's first online sock distributors.

After what felt like months, Tangiers made a fateful choice. "They won't break me," he muttered, unaware that he was speaking aloud. Those words would famously be reported by Joan Middleton, his co-worker and sometime poker buddy. "They won't break me."

When Harrison opened his eyes, the tip of his index finger lay on the left button of his ergonomically architected mouse, although he claims to this day that he has no memory of depressing it. And so that historic post, "Somebody In Here Smells", was committed to the nascent Web as if by the hand of God herself.

And who today, in the age of Gawker and HuffPo and this very site, could possibly argue that God was at work that day? I mean, if God exists. (Probably not.)

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