Sunday, 31 August 2014

A Bit of History

Indexed by archive.org Jan 28 2003 @ 12:56am

Indexed by archive.org Jan 28 2003 @ 12:56am

Since the decline and fall of our eponymous blogs (his final post December 2008, an inane quote about the Red Sox, and mine from January 2006, an inane celebration of the unearthing of a lost episode of Fred The Obnoxious Goldfish), JVG.com relaunch instigator Lockhart Steele and I have gone our separate ways, professionally. Lockhart transitioned an obsessive sidebar feature of LS.com called “Below 14th” into a web empire which he sold last year for between twenty and thirty million dollars; whereas I take my clothes off for money. Rereading our original blogs, this is only somewhat surprising.

Mine was founded on a simple premise.

Because I had:

A website named after me.

I came to the following revelation:

It is difficult to escape the conclusion that I am famous.

And made this promise:

I have chosen not to fight it. Generous to a fault, it is clear to me that it is my obligation — nay, my duty — to chronicle for prosperity every moment of my inevitable rise to even greater heights of fame. As a close friend said recently after I emailed him for the first time in four years, “jonathanvangieson.com. Sheesh. Who woke up and made you president, hah?” To him I reply: no one woke up. How true that is.

“Now That I’m Famous” included such groundbreaking features as “The Gallivants of Fame” which obsessively namedropped my friends as it described our barhopping in far too much detail, A Dreamlog which insisted that the general public would be interested in my inane subconscious output, Photos (mostly of myself), a comic strip (starring me and on occasion, Lock), and a level of self-eggrandizing self-obsession not hithertofore seen on the internet. Gawker couldn’t stop linking to me.

Back then, it was satire, though not everybody got the joke. It has since been well and truly eclipsed by reality.

The question, then: what can be blogged in a post-parodic world? Sincerity? Well-researched cultural commentary? Contemplations on the very nature of humanity itself? Poop jokes?

Saturday, 30 August 2014

A Gauntlet, Thrown

The text message arrived last Saturday, part of a barrage following the self-imposed tech exile in which I spent the preceding week. “Nice shoutout today,”—it declared—“on LS.com!” This communication came from none other than the proprietor of said web presence, Mr. Steele himself.

Lockhart, it seemed, was following through on his recent threat to revive his “web-log”, and had featured me in his very first post, even going so far as to imply that our conversation on the rooftop of his South Street Seaport apartment was in some way culpable for his perpetrating this crime against the internet.

By calling me out in the very first sentence of his relaunched blog, was Lock hoping to pressure me into making good my counter-threat, to re-launch my own? Having known him for two decades, I could come to only one conclusion: yes. The gauntlet had been thrown down.

Well, Mr. Steele, consider that gauntlet picked up, spit polished, and worn as a thong. As I did once before, I follow you into the blog-o-sphere, where I have no doubt that together we can — even in this day and age — raise the general level of inanity on the internet yet again.