My best friend, for reasons I can’t possibly try to sensibly go into publicly, has given me the pet name of “Brock”. So I was kind of rooting for Mr. Purdy, that young up-and-comer quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, who led his underdog team to overtime and down the field with an impressive seven-minute-plus drive in only the second Super Bowl overtime period ever played. But he was only able to get a chip shot field goal out of it. The more experienced and auspiced Patrick Mahomes engineered an even more impressive counterdrive with their last chance, eventually tossing a pass to Jets castoff Mecole Hardman to cap the game-winning march with seconds to go before an unprecedented second overtime perod.
If all that happened to me yesterday was the modest disappointment that seeing my “namesake” still come up short, I might have had more to say today.
But yesterday, for those of who still care, was a far more G-d-awful day for me.
And for a change, I’m gonna spare you the sordid details. The truth is, the majority of you truly don’t care. The handful of you who do that actually might can use private messaging to learn why. What little I will offer is that apparently, upset someone I respect enough to have him write me entirely out of his life, and the cause of this person’s intense disgust was another alleged friend who was so determined to press a series of false accusations against me with persistent, ill-timed phone calls and texts that ultimately related to a matter of something far less than life and death that it left me shaking with anger and fear. When the sincere request came in for me to take a mental competency test, a la Joe Biden, it literally broke me.
Think what you will of my choices and actions. You think Scranton Joe is defensive about his abilities? Sorry, Commander in Brief, you haven’t heard me when I’m so accused. And, frankly, I’m still arrogant enough to believe I might even score a tad higher. Not that that opportunity would ever happen. After all, I can’t afford to give him or anyone else a nickel toward their campaigns, despite getting about 20 e-mails and text a day from them begging, pleading and cajoling me to do say as if it were a matter a life and death.
I can’t afford much these days at all. Even getting an interview is an overwhelming ordeal. I know far more people who have lost their jobs in recent months than have been hired. The media industry continues to announce significant cuts on almost a daily basis across all sectors–what’s left of print, linear, streaming, tech. They can’t seem to find any solutions that any board will sign off on other than staff cuts. And they sure don’t wanna hear anything someone like me has to say that might offer some legitimate options. I have no advocates screaming for my inclusion. Ageism is arguably the most prolific prejudice out there, but you try and find any DEI “expert” who would offer anything more than thoughts and prayers in taking such action. If you are one or happen to know one, do shock me by standing up for folks like me. We both know what drives your bonuses and keeps you in your positions, and it sure ain’t what you think are old, white, straight men who couldn’t qualify to fight for their country.
I don’t respect our former president and I have lost faith in our sitting president’s ability to be elected. I have lost patience with the third option who insulted his family’s legacy by grafting his face onto a resurrected ad from his uncle’s 1960 TV media buys to seek contributions of his own, when the only things he truly gives a rat’s ass about are his damn vaccines and who may have killed his dad and uncle. So I apparently have aliented just about everyone in that space, especially since I don’t have any of the Obama’s digits.
When I do hear from people, they blindly defend their former colleagues because I dare to call out what I see as missteps. They privately curse me and demand I grow a set of balls. And those who do support me tend to fall into categories that I only describe as even more incendeniary than what I’m accused of. People who have given up on any hope of work. People who have their own agendas on what they think is important. People who tend to think progress is disgusting, prices for tickets and media subscriptions reprehensible and any point of view that attempts to put it into context personally insulting.
I may be maddening, but, honestly, I don’t ever want to be THAT bad.
But, apparently, I’m pretty horrible in many people’s minds that I do respect. Not that they care. But the same person who shut me out of their life forever yesterday, destroying any hope I had of even attempting to enjoy the Super Bowl, delivering the final blow of unsubscribing me to their list just as the tying field goal at the end of regulation last night was being kicked, left me with this sage advice:
If you have nothing nice to say, shut up.
Well, after yesterday, where I sat alone, crying uncontrollably once again, still awaiting anything resembling even a shred of respect from so many people who once considered me an indispensable ally who have clearly communicated their complete indifference to me for years, I simply don’t have anything nice to say, at least for now.
So I’m shutting up and shutting down this blog. For a while. I honestly don’t know how long. But I know more than ever how truly inconsequential most of you think I am. How you may even be laughing hysterically at me.
If you think I’m mistaken, if you think I might benefit from something resembling a pep talk, now’s the time to take action. I’ve asked countless times before, and so few of you even react with a thumbs up. Your lives are often too busy, or more likely you truly don’t care. And it’s wrong of me to think you should.
The elitists who run sites like the ANKLER, PUCK and the Penske files are far too well-endowed to care, and they can afford to have whatever snarky attitude they wish. I often agree with them, but they couldn’t give a rat’s ass about me. I’ve written them, often at their request. I’ve even sometimes kissed their ass. Richard Rushfield, Janice Lin, Andy Wallenstein and Matt Belloni, I’m mentioning you specifically. When I ask for the chance to meet about a job, at least I mean it. I used to believe I was more than good enough to contribute to your efforts. I’m certainly more astute on many industry details than any of you are. I actually held corporate positions. But that doesn’t seem to matter one whit to you, and I’m exhausted trying to somehow convince you it should.
And now your vitriol has been amplified by someone I used to consider a good friend, who got as angry with me as anyone I’ve ever seen that I wasn’t once married to, and I’m fairly sure wouldn’t mind if I turned up in a ditch. Much like how some other once-crucial people in my life seem to feel these days. I do hear from them when I don’t hear from people with job opportunities. Their threats and insults sting with a pain I wouldn’t even wish they could comprehend.
Maybe you’ll hear from me again. Maybe something positive will happen. Maybe someone will care. I’m dubious at best, and after today leaning much more toward disbelieving.
I’ll at least miss you, FWIW.
Until next time…perhaps