Friday, July 28, 2006

Some Blog-related Fandom Encounters

I had my first run-in with the insanity of blog fans yesterday.

El Tabachnikov swung by my desk, and proceeded to shake his head and say, "Yeah, Sage, I was disappointed with your post." He was referring to the entry, "A History of My First Date".

"Disappointed?" I came back, unbelieving. "You mean, the sweetly wistful reminiscence of my first love? Didn't it strike a chord in you, make you wing backwards in your own memory and put you in touch with your own youthful vulnerability?"

"I guess... a little bit... I was expecting how most of your posts end..."

"You mean, a deviant, or not so deviant sexual encounter?"


"Sure, Tabachnikov, that stuff is great, but there are other facets to the human condition. I'm just trying to explore them, and show that I've got the ability to work in different genres."

We went on to rap about other stuff; the nature of repressive households, the scarcity of chicks at Yeshiva, etc., etc. But in the back of my mind was this nagging pustule of doubt. Should I, in fact, be pandering to the mentality of my readers? Should I tailor what I write to the likes and dislikes of everyone who stumbles across my blog?

Clearly, the answer is no, and yet, geez, I can't stand criticism. Why can't people just accept and appreciate my artisitc endeavours as I do? Why can't they just think I'm the greatest thing since sliced bread and let it go at that. But no, they're like, "why can't you do more X?" where X denotes their particular interest. Remember that kid Road, before she vanished into forgetfulness and obscurity? She loved and worshipped me like one of Jim Jones' followers, yet always wanted me to be "funny". March can't stand anything that involves "words" or "concepts" deeper than that of eating cake. Fresh eviscerated me for using white paper instead of lined. Pog now loves me instead of disagreeing with everything I say, so that's something anyway.

Which brings me, inevitably, to KP. Here's a bloke who'd got a deep and penetrating mind, who thinks about the nooks and crannies of the universe as well as the nooks and crannies of his friday morning bagel. The kid's got moxie. He's got opinions and things to say. But when I ask him to comment on my blog more often, he say's, "It's gotten too popular."

And I'm thinking to myself, popular? Well, strictly speaking, there was a time when just March and KP read the blog. But, inevitably, like blowflies attracted to putrefying flesh*, the blog readership swelled to a good twenty regulars that I'm aware of, and probably a bit more that do not leave any trace of their visitation apart from a stamp in some metering program.

So, if that's popularity, then KP must really enjoy getting in on the ground floor. And then abandoning. He's like the blokes who used to like Green Day but savaged them when people actually liked their music. But I understand KP's rationalizations. He once had me all to himself, and now he must share. And he doesn't like sharing. He balls up his fists and cries out in existential agony, "O Sage, wherefore hast thou forsaken me?"

And then there's Nobby Burton. Nobs used to work at the desk right next to me, for about four years, in the spot that KP now enjoys. We've rapped about stuff till the cows come home, and know the ins and outs of each other's personality. Nobs knew me way before this blogger stardom thing happened.

It is Nobby's self-appointed duty, and I do mean self-appointed, to keep my ego in check. It all started back when I brought in a tune I had written for him to check out. He was mildly impressed [he's always mildly impressed!], but he still had to describe it as "a bit Teshy." Tesh-like. As in John Tesh, the former entertainment show host who went on to a profitable but artistically vacuous musical career pandering to new-age crystal worshippers.

Now, let me point out that, musically speaking, there's a superficial, but still vastly different, resemblance between the two. They're both mellow. There's a piano in both. But that's it. That's the only similarity. But rather than give me the satisfaction of saying the tune that I created is actually pretty good, he must always ensure that I remember my place in the grand scheme of things.

After each post, he often comes by the desk to give me the benefit of his critiques. The "God" series, where I write dialogues to explore various aspects of the human condition in a witty and irreverent manner, is described by him as "wacky".

"Why don't you write real humour, like Seinfeld or The Office?" he asks me.

"Do you know how hard that is?" I ask him back.

What I write is never good enough for him. I'm like the dutiful son forever trying to win the overbearing father's affection. And Nobby's quite satisfied with that arrangement.

I can only imagine what it must be like to be a real star, or famous person, and have to deal with legions of insane fans. No wonder they end up living in walled compounds with armed guards and dobermans patrolling the perimeter. But for now, it's not so bad. At least people are reading. I'll get the walled compound when and if it becomes necessary.

But if there are any female readers out there that want to sleep with me because of my burgeoning flame, please let me know. I'm sure we can arrange something.


Anonymous said...

You are way too worked up for a Friday. Relax kid! Enjoy your place in the world and continue to entertain us.


pog mo thoin said...

You may run the danger of becoming too conscious of your audience, known or otherwise, mainstream or fringe, to the point where you are not true to yourself and you end up not entertaining or satisfying anyone. You will create an blogging auto-immune disease and self consume.

That's what is in store for your blogging career - self-consumption. Don't say I didn't warn you.

March to the Sea said...

words and ideas confuse me.

"tesh-like" thats priceless.

Anonymous said...

For crying out loud, eviscerated? I just thought the lined paper was cuter. Hee hee.

I think you should just write what you want to write and let the rest piss off. We'll still be here reading and enjoying.

That's how I look at things on my own blog.

El Tabachnikov said...

What can I say...I call 'em as I see 'em.

Annoyed said...

"real humor"

What the hell is that?

If it makes you laugh a real laugh then its' humor.


Did you ever notice? ahhh...nevermind

Nobby Burton said...

To echo what El Tabachnikov said, I simply give you my honest take on things. I've told you that I admire your musicianship, technically speaking, and that I couldn't match your literary skills but I'm not going to blow smoke up your arse and you should be cognizant of those who do.

Let's take 'Variation 1', or better yet 'The Unicorn'. Impressive on many levels but do I want to listen to them more than once or twice? Probably not. Others will say stuff like, "Ooh Greg, that's a tasty lick" or "I really liked that! You should release an album!!!", but are they really putting your tracks in their iPod playlists or cranking them up in their car a few times a week?

I enjoy most of your storytelling. I really think you have a knack for finding humour in real life situations. I read the "God" skits and yes, I found them to be wacky compared to your other stuff. They played out like a sitcom script and I was amused but not to the point of laughing. I explained that they just weren't my thing. I probably shouldn't have said anything at all, although I secretly think you look forward to my critical eye in a sadomasochistic way.

I hope you understand that my critisms only come from wanting to see you do the best you possibly can. My mission, if any, is to see you grow and blossom from a Tesh to a Lennon.

Cheers big ears!

DiVaD sAiRf said...

Apparently, it seems like El Tabachnikof wants every story to end in fornication with some mystical female being, preferabbly, wearing pasties.

Nobby is like the yang to your ying (in a non-brokeback kinda way) bringing balance to your ego. The Nobby-Sage discussions back in the day now seem like the precursor to the written word of the Emetic Sage.

Keep up the good work, with and without the mystical erotica.

KP said...

waaah KP doesn't comment regularly on my blog anymore waaah

seriously though man, i'd comment more, but i got that whole apathy thing going on. it's awesome. it gets me out of doing tons of stuff i don't want to do.

Hotwire said...

tesh-like. that's way harsh. based on what i know of you i wouldn't pick your music to be tesh-like at all.

has anyone else heard sage's tunes who'd care to comment?