The Big Three Killed My Baby
This just in:
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Some mentions around the blogosphere about going to Vegas with roughly 100 "strangers" and how those near and dear to us find it odd, how our explanations are met with uncomprehending eyes. "You don't KNOW these people?" is a common refrain. And I guess the answer to that is yes. And no.
I've not actually met the vast majority of you, but there is a sense of "knowing" regardless. As talented as you are, I doubt you could completely conceal your real being--or a reasonable facsimilie thereof--thoughout your entire blog canon. It's a personal medium, so, while I've never shaken your hand, it doesn't mean I don't have some idea of what you are like, if not who you are.
But, communication being a largely physical endeavor, I'd be blind if I fashioned a whole person out of the ether. This is where the skeptics have a point. And this is where I've come across an idea.
I propose we go around the room and introduce ourselves. I've spent a couple days trying to think of a fun way to do this. One idea I had was to have you all compare yourselves to a Real World cast member. I decided that was unworkable. Back in the day, the Real World had definite types, two-dimentional characters slotted nicely into an easy description: The Cowboy, The Gay Guy, The Musician. That changed right around the fifth season, I'd wager, when MTV decided the best way to induce drama was to limit the cast to sociopaths and those who aspired to be sociopaths. As such, reaching so far back into the annals seemed like it would be a little too esoteric.
I encountered the same problem with my next idea, that of picking ANY reality show contestant. Sure, this would be right in CJ's wheelhouse, but I'm not sure there is enough attention paid to All That is Reality, certainly not as much as at my house. For the record, I'd go with Ian, from the just-completed season of "Survivor." Not entirely for the personality type, though there are similarities, but for the look. Not only would I waste away to near nothingness after 39 days on the Island (I'm a mere 175 pounds with a full belly), but I would also end up with an exact replica of his facial hair after all that time. Wispy in most spots, but those furry patches high on the cheekbones.
But I digress.
Here's what we're gonna do. Write me the lead paragraph of your obituary (either in comments or on your blog). It's not just fun! It's timely, since there is a reasonable expectation it will pass though your mind at least once that you're gonna die while in Vegas. Most of us will reach that rare level of intoxication that spawns such thoughts. Remember, obituaries are not morbid, they are tributes, celebrations of life. And, we're prepared, just in case, kinda like how I gave the dear and patient wife all my Neteller information last night.
There are, obviously, many ways you can go about this little exercise, all of which will shed light on the person you are. You could go with something currently fictional, but one which expresses your goals and dreams for the future:
Joe Speaker (not his real name), who parlayed $30 into a World Series of Poker Championship, international fame and repeated erotic adventures with Salma Hayek, has died.
I don't think I'm gonna go that way, though. Too close to the whole WSOP fantasy exercise, not to mention carrying pretty steep implied divorce odds.
Let's come back to reality, find a real description. Personal characteristics might be a good way to go.
Joe Speaker (not his real name), whose unnatural attachment to turtleneck sweaters led many to question his sexuality, has died.
Um, true, but lacking in panache (just a warning for you kids: use of "panache" in casual conversation could have the same effect as turtleneck sweaters). We need to grab the reader, need to find something noteworthy.
Generally obituary subjects need to have a certain standing. They might be famous, but just as often, they're not. But if you spent 18 months as CFO of Ford, you'll probably qualify. Or if you're one of a few remaining survovors of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, you'll get in. So, have you ever done anything newsworthy?
Joe Speaker (not his real name), the original drummer for seminal underground rock group Dissemblance, who once performed at LA's famous Whiskey A Go-Go on a Tuesday night, has died.
Yeah, that was cool, but hardly registered on the public conscience. Hmmmm, I have gotten my name in the paper before.
Joe Speaker (not his real name), an All-Section sweeper who led his Granada High Matadors to league and section titles in 1985, has died.
No, that doesn't measure up, either, though it might get me a brief in the hometown paper.
We all want to be remembered for something, if only among our circle of friends and family. It's why we have kids. While being a parent is not particularly newsworthy, it is, I'll wager, the most important thing I will ever do. And probably my best chance for getting an obit in the paper.
Joe Speaker (not his real name), the father of diplomat AJ, the man widely credited with fostering absolute peace in the Middle East, has died.
So, there ya go. Plenty of examples to work with. I leave you with my final answer.
Joe Speaker (not his real name), an eternally optimistic goofball, loved by both mothers and small children alike, who faithfully and consistently over-played Ace-Jack Suited and subsequently cast his family into abject poverty, has died.
Services are pending.