Every day, it’s the same story. A starry-eyed young man leaves his 9-5 job at the steel mill. A eager young woman in pigtails takes off from her boring job on the farm. Both want a better life. Both leave their small Ohio or Kansas towns. Both get on buses, heading off to achieve their dreams. That’s right — they’re heading back home… to turn on their computers and start a blog.
This is not only happening Ohio or Kansas. It’s happening in Brooklyn. In Kyoto. In Buenos Aires. All with the same ultimate goal of any blogger — to make it as a Blogebrity.
Let me tell you, my young friends. It is a path strewn with peril and broken dreams. Even those who reach the pinnacle of Blogebrity, like myself, can quickly fall from the public’s favor. One moment, you can be the darling of the blogosphere, with hundreds of admirers, and the next you can be trolling the comments of dude.man.phat, with the hope of stealing away just one reader.
Let me tell you a little of my sad story:
I started out like many of you — a naive blogger who assumed a "technorati" was someone who worked behind the service desk at "Best Buy."
Those were the innocent days. I lived with three of my fraternity brothers (and our pet monkey) in a small apartment in Northern California. My bedroom looked out on Google HQ’s vast parking lot. At night, I would see the familiar Google sign as it lit up the night sky and I would talk to it as if it were a god.
"One day, people will search for ‘Citizen of the Month’ on Google, and I will be first on the list."
Soon, I was on Blogebrity’s C-List.
But that little taste of success just made me hungry for more. I wanted to be part of the upper echelons of blogging life. Sure, I now got invited to all the fancy parties, but I was always stuck going home with the plain-jane librarian-blogger and not the really hot female bloggers who wrote about women’s shoes. These nights were terrible. I remember one time — right in the middle of fucking one of these librarian-bloggers, we got into a big fight over the pros and cons of the Dewey Decimal System. After that night, I knew I wanted something MORE.
Luckily, my post about Lindsay Lohan and Nicole Richie became the "toast of the town." Bloggers around the world began to know me as the "Lindsay Lohan is skinny"-guy.
Soon, I was on the B-List.
Oh, how I enjoyed it. I said good-bye to my roommates and that annoying pet monkey and moved to Hollywood. There were parties every night. There was cocaine and fucking galore. But there was a dark side. My marriage with Sophia broke up after she caught me having IM sex with a blogger from LA Blogs.
I started falling apart emotionally. I started writing posts about my fondness for Sophia, even though we weren’t together anymore. But just like no one wants a serious Ben Stiller, my audience abandoned me. They grew tired of my weepy posts about my life gone sour.
Before long, I had slid back to the C-list.
After months of shock therapy, Scientology, and Kabbalah classes, I put myself back on track. I stopped writing about Sophia. I began to flirt with other female bloggers again. I even flirted with gay men to win them over, too. My female fans, always suckers for a ‘comeback story’ returned to the fold. Like John Travolta after ‘Pulp Fiction," I had returned.
I wrote a series about my penis, always insinuating that "I wasn’t ashamed of what I had." It may have been a crass media campaign, but it worked. I sent out a phony press release naming myself "the Colin Farrell of Bloggers (if you get what I mean)."
My fans went crazy. I shot to the top of the A-list.
This should have been the happiest time of my life. But it wasn’t. Old relationships died. My love affairs with my female bloggers went sour. They said that I changed. That I wasn’t "nice" anymore. And they were right. I stopped caring about my old blogging buddies, both male and female. At first, I hired a blog-reader to read other blogs and hand in a one-page synopsis for me to glance at. Then I hired a blogging-double to even write my comments, so everyone would still think I cared. But I didn’t. I hit bottom.
Envy got the most of me. On the outside, it may have looked as if I were at the top of my game, but inside, I was soul-less. All I could think about was making sure that I was always at the top of the list. I officially changed my name to AAANeilKramer, but it failed to increase my readership.
I began to develop an insane hatred for a fellow blogger — Heather Armstrong of Dooce. Although I had no idea who she was, every single person seemed to have her on their blogroll. Everyone seemed to love her beautiful writing about her beautiful life with her beautiful baby. Her popularity drove me to near insanity.
I needed to bring her down.
I hired some unemployed web designers and doctored some nude photos of her in bed with Charlie Sheen. I then published them on sites like Gawker and Defamer. The uproar was immediate. I was called the "Evil Blogger." I was forced to write an apology.
After this incident, I was shunned by all my peers. I began to heavily drink mojitos, as it was one of the few drinks that didn’t give me heartburn. The lowest point of my life occurred during a drunken rampage in Brentwood, when a young woman in a "I love Dooce" t-shirt threw a latte in my face.
My name was erased from Blogebrity. That’s why you don’t see it there today.
After months of more shock therapy, Scientology, and Kabbalah classes, I have learned to accept my status as a humble blogger with a loyal, but mundane readership. I love all my friends for coming to my blog. I love their wonderful blogs, too. In fact, my reader still gives a one-page synopsis of their stuff every morning.
That, my young friends, is the story of one blogger’s sad and dangerous journey. Be careful what you wish for.