Thursday, July 14, 2011

"Blog Police!"

“There’s a ‘Blog Police’”?

“You were ‘red flagged.’

“’For what?”

“Overlooking a ‘bloggable’ story. Fastball right down the middle. And you left your bat sitting on your shoulder.”

“I don’t understand.”

“You cannot ignore a ‘bloggable’ story. It blands out the brand.”

“Blands out the bland?”

“The brand! It blands out the brand.”

“I’m sorry. My fingers got tongue tied.”

“People coming to “Blogspot” expect bloggers to weigh in on the big stories of the day. Not stories from fifty years ago about the crush you once had on your Junior High School teacher.”

“That was a pretty good story.”

“But it wasn’t exactly current now, was it? You could have written it anytime you wanted. Or never. But here’s this big lollipop right down Broadway, and you give it a pass.”

“Okay. What story did I ignore?’

“A ninety-five year old woman is forced to surrender her wet adult diaper to ‘Security’ inspectors at the airport because of ‘The Rules’ under the insane belief that the old lady might possibly be a threat to…look at that! I’m writing it for you.”

“I noticed that story.”

“You noticed that story. And you wrote about your Cousin Mosey instead?”

“I just didn’t think I had anything meaningful to say about that story.”

“You had nothing to say about an incontinent ninety-five year old woman being treated like a terrorist threat? I don’t understand, sir. Are you a blogger, or what?”

“It’s a noteworthy story. No question.”

“A noteworthy story with absurdist qualities. That’s right in your wheelhouse. Imagine the satirical possibilities.”

“Are you telling me what to write? Holy cow! I feel like I’m working for the networks again! I mean, what are your credentials? Are you a writer?”

“I am ‘Blog Police.’ We took a course.”

“I’m sorry, I thought the whole point of a blog is you can write whatever you want.”

“Without blanding out the brand.”

“I didn’t even know there was a bland. I mean, a brand.”

“I mean no offense here, but you’ve been writing this blog for three and a half years.”

“That’s correct.”

“And during that period, are you aware of any noticeable increase in your readership?

“It’s grown pretty good. I started with three ‘Followers.’ And now I have forty-two.”

“Forty-two ‘Followers.’ That’s practically ‘going viral.’ No wait. That’s fifty thousand.”

“And you think chronicling some inappropriate behavior at an airport would put me over the top?”

“No. Keep writing about how to get the water out of an overturned canoe. That’s certain to skyrocket your traffic.”

“I understand. I just don’t think I have anything valuable to add concerning the incident.”

“That doesn’t stop other commentators. You’re a blogger. Something happens. You write about it.”

“But it’s obvious. Treating all passengers exactly the same way is ridiculous. But those are the rules.”

“You mean, if the ninety-five year old woman were in cahoots with the terrorists, and the urine in her adult diaper turned out to be some urine-resembling liquid explosive…look at that, I’m writing it for you again.”

“I know it’s crazy. But it’s, like, ‘Duh.’ Anyone could write that. You almost did.”

“You’ve got a lot to learn about respecting authority.”

“I know. It’s a problem of mine. I’m sorry.”

“No problem. But it’s going on your record. Now – getting back to the issue at hand – how about a personal story that relates to ‘Outrage at the Airport’ story. You’re pretty good at those.”

(A BIG SIGH, AS EARL DIGS DEEPLY INTO HIS MEMORY BANK)

“Well, there was the time a police officer stopped me for making an illegal U-turn, and I asked him what I should have done, and he said, ‘Make a left turn into a driveway, then back out, and turn around.’ I told him there were red lights both behind me and in front of me, so there was no traffic in either direction. Making a U-turn was, in fact, the safer move, because by the time I turned into the driveway and began backing out, the lights would very likely have changed, and the traffic would have resumed, making backing out a comparatively more dangerous procedure. The police officer actually agreed with me, but he said he had no choice. I had broken the law, and he was obligated to give me a ticket. As the police officer wrote me up, I blurted something that was probably not the wisest thing to say to a large person with a gun. I said to him, ‘It must be hard to have a job where you’re not permitted to use your own discretion.’ Is that what you’re talking about?”

“Well, it’s not earthshaking. But at least it’s something.”

“Okay. Are we done now? I am in the clear?”

“I will let you go this time. I am not like that police officer.”

“Thank you.”

“But be careful. Or I’ll be back. And next time, there’ll be sanctions.”

“’Sanctions’? What sanctions?”

“We are not at liberty to reveal what they are. But trust me. You want to steer clear of sanctions.”

“I appreciate the warning.”

“Look, you’re a good writer. But the things that capture your attention...I mean, you once blogged about your trembling fear of an oversized bar of soap.”

“It was really big.”

“You keep that up, and you’ll be talking to yourself without an outlet.”

“‘A word to the wise.’”

“Exactly. Now I’m not telling you what to write, understand, but there’s this big story about a young mother on trial for…”

“Oh, man! That’s disgusting! Not to mention that it’s something that happens every summer, during the ‘slow news’ season. And I have to jump on the bandwagon? I’m sorry. That’s just not the kind of story that interests m…”

“Were you listening to me, sir?”

“Okay, I’ll think about it.”

“See that you do. Goodbye now.”

“It was great meeting you.”

“Was that meant to be sarcastic?”

“It was.”

“Well, there you go. You should try using more of that in your blog.”

5 comments:

Zaraya said...

Dear Mr. Pomerantz; I suspect that most of the people that follow you, or pop in for a visit, do so because your blog rarely traffics in the TSA Outrage story. Fight the man Earl!

-z

Mac said...

I can read about the old lady and her diaper everywhere else. I come here to read about Cousin Mosey. The Blog Police are wrong!

diane said...

Blog Police, my Aunt Fanny's petunias!
Why waste an exceptional talent on stories that are hacked to pieces by the everyday media. Your stories about you and your family I treasure.

Frank Paradise said...

You have 43 followers Earl but I don't know how to do the follow thingy.

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