Great day in the morning! This has been a big week here at Knowingly Undersold. First, after years of pretty infrequent writing, we reached that previously unimaginable tally of 1/8th of a million reads, and then we were nominated for Most Influential Blogger! My cup runneth over! Now, you may be taken aback at the unabashed navel gazing going on here, as this isn’t typically the sort of work we’re cranking out here at Sexy Architects and Norman Invasion Tales ‘R’ Us. But as the recognition and milestones are starting to pile up, I feel it is time to address the state of affairs here K.U.
There has been a going trend of bloggers patting each other on the back for being good with a verb and skilled at adjectiving through a mundane description of one’s brunch – well, it finally trickled down to this guy. So, sincerely, thanks to Matt over at Must Be This Tall To Ride for tossing some love my way. Much appreciated. If it wasn’t so incestuous, I’d nominate him straight back, because that guy knows his way around a turn of phrase. Plus, he’s from Ohio, and while I’m now living fat in the great, grand city of Chicago, I’m originally from Hardscrabble, Pennsylvania, which is a sister city to all the rest of the Rust Belt.
So, the way this Influential Blogger business works, as I understand it, is you get a series of tasks to accomplish in this post, and then nominate other folks to continue the good work begun by some bored blogger probably six weeks ago or so. So let’s do that! First up, you need to display the award!
Second, you tell everyone that someone thought you strung together enough quality sentences to nominate you into the club, and thank that person. I think this has been accomplished.
Now, the third and fourth parts of this are where you’re supposed to nominate 10 other bloggers, and let them know that this happened. Like Matt before me, I find Influential to be a curious way to describe anyone’s blogging. And while there are many, many folks out there that I enjoy, I do feel a bit awkward gushing all over them. So I may not hit ten. I may not hit five. But no one should feel slighted by my slighting them.
And lastly there are questions – meant to probe and discover what makes these folks tick, where their inspiration stems from, and why anyone should care about their internet babbling. Here are the questions I have been challenged to answer:
1) What is your favorite season?
Lady De Winter, the Rebecca De Mournay version. All in all, the ’90s Three Musketeers is a pretty frivolous, forgettable film, but there are random highlights. Oliver Platt’s beard. Tim Curry’s epic Tim Curry-ness. Fancy dress boys battling other fancy dress boys in the name of royalty and whatnot. And scoff if you want, Lady De Winter holds that glossy junk movie together.
2) Who is your favorite singer?
Now, almost whoever I’d say would seem like a joke, and I know this will not be taken seriously, but as ridiculous a song as it is, I could listen to Richard Harris sing “MacArthur Park” for the rest of my life. Is he my favorite singer? No. I’ve probably heard like three songs he ever sang. But “MacArthur Park” is so sublimely weird, and his voice is so bizarrely suited to it, that this manner of lightning in a bottle will never be captured again. Perfection.
3) What is your favorite kind of music?
Does anyone have a favorite kind of music, really? Does anyone just definitely answer this with, “Oh, country, definitely, all other music can choke”? That being said, I have a long gestating post detailing the reasons why Digital Underground should be in the Rock ‘N’ Roll Hall of Fame. If that gives you any insight. (Hint: It really shouldn’t)
4) Who is your favorite author?
I have favorite books, but a favorite author? That’s harder. Catch-22 is my favorite book, by a lot, but Heller never wrote anything else all that great. Douglas Adams was a genius, but Dirk Gently and the later HGTTG books don’t quite hold up. So I’d say…Dickens? Have never read a bad Dickens.
5) If you had enough money, what charity would you donate to?
No joke, The National Film Preservation Foundation. If I had enough money, I would work there for free forever, and whore myself out to raise money for them.
6) If you had enough money, what room in your home would you renovate?
Well, the landlord would not appreciate me tinkering around with the apartment, I can tell you that. So if I had enough money, I think I would purchase a whole bunch of rooms first, and worry about turning them all into deluxe movie theaters later.
7) What is your favorite television show?
What, ever? Jesus! All right, well, The Sopranos is my favorite drama, Cheers is my favorite sitcom, the second through fourth seasons of Saturday Night Live is my favorite period of time, and “Jose Chung’s From Outer Space” from The X-Files is my favorite single episode of anything. My favorite current show? Um, there ain’t much. Boardwalk Empire? Game of Thrones? Parks and Rec? One of them.
8. Which of these is your most favorite drink: Pepsi – Coke – Ice Tea – Water?
Like Matt before me, I’m not answering this nonsense question. (I do like a nice iced tea, though, I guess)
9. Do you own a desktop PC or laptop… or both?
I only have a laptop now, but it is set up permanently on the desk, and if I unplug it the battery dies, so it’s pretty close to being a desktop. I need a new computer, really soon.
10. What would you rather do for relaxation, read a book or watch television?
While I’ve said for a long time, I would rather see a bad movie than a good play (and I’m a theater guy from way back), I never thought to compare TV and books. Television rarely feels like something besides a time-waster (not that there’s anything wrong with that), but I would sooner read a book than do anything else. I’ve read things I didn’t like, but I’ve never regretted having spent the time reading. I watched two seasons of Heroes. That’s time I’ll never get back.
Now, I can compose my own questions for the limited number of folks I plan on throwing this whole undertaking onto. I do this not because the above questions are ass (they kinda are), but because my curiosity can be better appeased through my own inquiry. And here we go:
1) Who the hell do you think you are, and where do you get off?
2) Would you correct a person’s grammar on Facebook, even if you really liked that person, or had recently started sleeping with them, or both?
3) Not saying you should, but if you had to burn down a library or a church, which one would meet your wrath? Why?
4) As an extension of #3, let’s say your poor decision making lands you in the depths of fiery Hell – who are you surprised to meet there?
5) If #4’s mention of Hell as an actual afterlife possibility offends your academic sensibilities, what do you expect to find once the respiration ceases? And moreover, do they have cake there?
6) Three of the five above questions use the word “hell,” twice capitalized and once not. Do you feel the need to use excessive vulgarity to make a point/express joy/summon loved ones?
7) If you were forced to live in one city in Texas for a year, what city would it be (you can’t say Austin)? If you already live in Texas, just imagine the first sentence asks about New Jersey (you can’t say Atlantic City).
8) Aristotle once wrote, “To say of what is that it is not, or of what is not that it is, is false, while to say of what is that it is, and of what is not that it is not, is true.” What the hell is this dead crank talking about?
9) You’re in a desert, walking along the sand, when all of a sudden you look down. You see a tortoise. It’s crawling toward you. You reach down and flip the tortoise over on its back. The tortoise lays on its back, its belly baking in the hot sun, beating its legs trying to turn itself over, but it can’t. Not without your help. But you’re not helping. Why is that?
10) Let’s turn inward. Given all the smoking and drinking you did when you were younger, and probably still do when no one’s looking, at what age do you think you’ll finally get to find out whether there’s an afterlife? How do you think it’ll happen? And how much mileage will be on your old face by that point?
Finally, who do I want to answer these questions? Whose blogs do I find endlessly magical, inspiring, gooey, and delicious? I don’t want to burden anyone, so let me make this brief.
A true master of the art form, Dave writes Free Soup with unbridled lunacy. It’s a super-sized kaleidoscope of pop culture irreverence and humans failing other humans in catastrophic ways. Plus, it makes me laugh. The best.
A tough, fiesty blog about writing and life, Keri has a unique voice that is always interesting and informative. Her past is replete with hair-raising incidents, which she utilizes to great effect in her blog. She also has a commendable versatility, not allowing her site to simply focus on writing or the past exclusively.
Very witty and fun, Ben’s blog brings the bitter in ways that the average person wouldn’t conceive. He also makes possibly the best use of pics and memes I’ve ever seen. It’s solidly put together and well executed, like a very bitter military invasion of your face.
At a glance this wouldn’t be my type of blog, as I lean towards straight fiction or at least fanciful nonsense. But Mareship has pulled me in nonetheless, with great writing and very funny asides. It culminates in thorough entertainment every time.
Oh, I’m supposed to pick ten? Well, I’m doing four. Not because I don’t love anyone else, but because I don’t want to write this post anymore. Look at that count! Shit, I wouldn’t read this if I didn’t have to! I might not go back and edit it! No, probably will.
Thanks again to Matt. Really, anyone who wants to answer my questions, feel free, I’d be curious to hear your answers (especially to #9, for my own purposes…).