Opinions need not be feared nor suppressed.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Enjoy the wet side of the bed

Two days off in a row. Man, I could get used to this. And with eight more to go, I'm feeling kind of chipper right now. Upbeat, you could say. My daughter Peace and her better half are here. And my amazing grandkids, Gage and Taylor are here.

Sorry about my glum outlook immediately following the big blogger soiree. Well, not really. It's just that, I'm not completely stupid. I'm not stupid enough to believe that any of the hair cuts with suits would ever touch base with me again, or any local bloggers for that matter, if we were to deliver to them some consistently stinging rebukes of their stated positions. They'd drop us like a hot botato (Wifey's English).

Sure, they attended the event. Sure, the turnout was amazing. But I honestly feel they were there expecting most, some or all of us to be suddenly starstruck into writing glowing reviews about them and their platforms. With the country spinning it's way down the bowl and into the aged sewer systems we cannot afford to upgrade, you could say I'm becoming increasingly jaded. And not easily impressed by even the very best of the glad-handers.

And another thing. I've developed some measure of respect for the elected and the appointed I have publicly chastised in the past, but who still bothered to cordially approach me in public. Off the top of my pointy head, former Wilkes-Barre City Administrator J.J. Murphy, former City Council Person (gender neutral bullspit) Jim McCarthy and current County Controller Walter Griffith come to mind. I ripped 'em every now and again, but they shot right back at me. Good stuff.

And at this event on Friday night, there was one elected official who could have approached me, but chose not to. Actually, I made it a point to sit right in front of him for a half hour, making as much eye contact as I possibly could. This was his chance to tell me why I've been woefully wrong about his performance all along. And I would have been willing to listen to his pitch. But rather than touching base with me right there in person, I got a Facebook "friend" request from his wife over the weekend. Now, what am I supposed to make of that?

And what's this utter nonsense about needing a bodyguard to fend off the likes of Frank Scavo just because he's a Tea Party stalwart? That's patently absurd. Last we checked, Frank had no criminal record to speak of, much unlike the folks who have influenced or who have advised our president over the years. Christ! I could bench press Frank Scavo. Ease up with the cheap attempts to marginalize those who do not agree with you. Ease up with that laziness.

And as a seasoned veteran of these various and sundry blogging pursuits in question, I say with some certainty that if you really feel you need a bodyguard to hang out with the minuscule NEPA blogosphere, you're probably in the wrong business. But I will say this, your chosen bodyguard was easily approachable and quite likable. Seems like a really smart kid.

I'm really torn on the coming Leighton/Yudichak election scrum. I think they're both likable and commendable in many respects. I think Yudichak has given a good showing of himself. But I believe that what Tom Leighton has done here in Wilkes-Barre has been remarkable when directly compared to any of his recent predecessors. Remarkable. So I'm left to wonder how I, as a resident of Wilkes-Barre, would benefit more by the eventual result of this race. Do I vote to send Leighton up the political ladder, or do I vote to keep him right here in Wilkes-Barre?

As for the attention and the press looking to interview us local bloggers, I suppose that those of us that have been typing away for years and years on end do deserve some accreditation of sorts for being so tireless in these pursuits. Some of us have been doing our necessary homework, attending the events, taking the pictures, delivering the occasional "exclusive" and providing a differing perspective than that of the press for a long, long time.

No matter why we bothered, now matter why we still bother, we bothered to bring plenty of local issues to the forefront, some before even the local press caught wind of them. I don't know that all of that should command respect. But it does get you a free hat pin every once in a while. Oh, and a brief mention in the newspapers.

Wait, I did get the VIP passes to see the Beach Boys at Kirby Park right up in front of the stage. And the accompanying free food and drink, too. And the taunts, the attempts at intimidation, the middle fingers, the SUV/bicycle chases, the profanity-laced exchanges, the chest bumps and all of that good, good stuff. Yes, blogging all these years has had plenty of stuff coming my way. Not all accolades, of course.

Funny thing, though. While the place filled to it's limits with Democrats looking to rub elbows with a blogosphere heavily-laden with Democrat apologists, there was the Luzerne County GOP honcho, Renita Fennick, leaving the place with a handful of voter registration cards of Democrats looking to change their party affiliations. A precursor, I suppose, to the coming electoral sh*t storm that promises to be a political Katrina-like event for plenty of elected Democrats on November the 2nd.

The Democrat super majority thought it was smart and necessary to be antagonistic towards the voters. And soon, it'll be the voters turn to get all antagonistic on their soon-to-be expelled asses. That's assuming that more and more of them won't simply walk away from the oligarchy that is Washington, D.C. in 2010.

Anyway, even though I was initially put off just a tad by the entire event, it was a good time despite that god-awful band making me want to implode right on the spot. (Jeez, and we thought Tim Grier seizing control of the jukebox at Mark's Pub was about as bad as it could get.) It's a matter of a degree of separation for me. If we're going to party with the politicos, then are we going to feel free to beat them unmercifully over the head by way of our keyboards when the need arises? I'm still collating with myself on that question, but I seriously doubt it.

So, do we in the local blogosphere really have some power in these fingers of ours? Have we finally arrived? Have we finally been recognized and afforded some long overdue measure of respect?

Or are we getting a bit too cozy with the enemy?

Whatever. Don't much matter to me on most days. But the way I see it, you're either a part of the problem, or you're a part of the solution. And for those of you seriously considering sleeping with the enemy, enjoy the wet side of the bed.



Tom Borthwick said...

Hyperbole Mark, hyperbole. Last time I checked, literary devices don't marginalize people. Frank marginalized himself by being pretty damn ignorant. Unless you're a black and white guy, too, and like that kind of stuff?

Tom Borthwick said...

Oh, and feel free to mention my name if you reference my writing, I don't mind!

D.B. Echo said...

Wait, that was Tim Grier that time at Mark's Pub? What, was he wearing long sleeves? I should have recognized him by the tattoos! (Stupid prosopagnosia.)

zorcong said...

Tom, you had Scavo marginalized in your mind before you ever laid eyes on him. Be a man and admit it.

You followed the official talking points issued from your heroes like a good, little myrmidon: Tea Party folks are all crazed, ignorant, racists, homophobes and they bite the heads off of bats when no one is looking. And worst of all, they bow before a god for the most part.

As for me, I have never once met Frank Scavo, nor have I ever once communicated with him.

So take the useless "black & white" malarkey and shove it, okay?

Stripping this down to it's roots, you suggested going in that your safety was in question because of the attendance of people such as Frank Scavo.

And the way it turns out, nothing could have been further from the truth.

Truth be told, you were wrong. So take your lumps like one of the big boys would.

zorcong said...

What's this?

An Obama donor has threatened the lives of the elected?


Go figure.

Tom Borthwick said...

Interesting. One minute I marginalized him with my bodyguard talk, next minute I marginalized him before I met him. Which is it?

I know you love your tough-guy rhetoric (maybe I'll need a bodyguard next time I see you -- that's sarcasm, by the way), but it is possible for people who disagree with you to speak honestly about events to which there were witnesses. On top of that, look up hyperbole. I'm guessing you have no idea what it is, didn't bother, or chose to ignore it. I didn't feel unsafe for a minute. Frank was a nice guy, I don't hate him. I just have a huge problem with people who see the world in black and white. I'm not sure how that's malarkey, when that's exactly what he said to me. Bodyguard as my witness.

So what am I wrong about? Your literal reading of my use of a literary device?

That one's on you. Do a few push-ups, flex in the mirror, yell loudly about libruls takin over Amurca, and then man up and admit you missed the point (or flunked high school English, take your pick).

Aren't you the big boy in this room?

Oh, and it seems that you're unable to take things any way but literally, so I'll let you know that I don't literally flex in the mirror.

Now, is your blood boiling? Don't like my tone? Address the issue. Which is, what, Frank's words, my thoughts on him? Ah, you readily admitted you didn't meet the guy and don't have an informed perspective. I guess that's typical of a conservative. Marginalized much? I wonder why.

zorcong said...

Tom, first of all, it’s not like any of us have been reading your writing for any great length of time and have a developed a feel for the nuances of it.

If that was an attempt at hyperbole, it did not deliver the desired result. If that’s my bad, so be it. My bad.

And I was not using any tough guy talk by suggesting that I could bench press Frank Scavo. That was a bit of embroidering on my part. What some might even call an attempt at hyperbole.

Although, I might be able to bench press him at least once. My sole point was that he is not exactly an imposing figure, not someone we would need a bodyguard to approach.

The guy is on WILK just about every day, so I do have a good feel for where he’s coming from and all of that. And I don’t really care about where he’s coming from or where he’s hoping to get to. In the grand scheme of things, he’s a bit player not ready for prime time.

Is my blood boiling? Um, anything but. But I am mildly amused by your brashness, which I can appreciate. If you’re going to do something, you might as well do it hell-bent for imported leather, right?

Mush on, boy.

You’re not the first upstart blogger to appear out of the electronic fog and start out by biting my ankles. Take a scroll down the right side of that NEPA BLOGS site and you’ll see how many have come before you.

And I also understand that you dare not bite the ankles of your electronic, like-minded choir boys, so you’ll be saving the speculative comments about my level of education for me and me alone. I get it.

I’m on the wrong side of the political DMZ, so I must be probed for weaknesses and attacked at every available opportunity. That’s fine.

Compared to you, I’m a big dummy.

You’re the new big boy in the room. But please, please, will you continue to tutor me?


Tom Borthwick said...

haha, understood. Point taken, I haven't been around and I can't fault you.

I have to admit, I had fun trying to give as good as I got. I'll have to take lessons from you.

Anyway, to be forthright, I love your blog, or I wouldn't be here, so take my brashness with a grain of salt. I respect people who disagree with me, and love the insight it gives me. You're the only middle-right blogger in NEPA, so I look forward to reading. If I can't hold my own against somebody who disagrees with me, then I need to rethink my position.