I’ve vacillated for many years about whether or not to have open comments. Ignoring the many Google hits from “outsiders” looking for “humiliation stories” or “porno stores in des plaines,” among the many other bizarre keyword combinations that will bring you to my mess of a blog, my belief is that anybody who would read the blog and leave a comment is either an R. Kelly fan or a personal friend. This has been the case nine times out of ten, but then came the junk comments.
Yup, once Google archived my entire site, comment-bots came out of the woodwork to wreak havoc on my site for no real reason. Any time I have open comments, I get slammed harder than frequent commenter Teenwolf’s mom on any given Saturday night. This wouldn’t bother me if MovableType had a better spam-catcher. Maybe they will when 4.0 comes out, but for now…it’s pretty shitty, so every time I come home I’m greeted with anywhere between 20 and 70 comments that are pure junk. I have to go through and junk them all, hoping in vain that this will bring MT’s junk filter up to snuff.
Sometimes I disable comments, resulting in panic and uproar from both of my fans. They don’t want to sign up to TypeKey, SixApart’s “authenticated” commenting system, even though it’d make life way easier for me. Do you know how difficult it is to login to MovableType, click “highlight all,” then click “junk”? I’m already guilty enough for never blogging; the junk comments are like a heckling Greek chorus, saying, “Heeey, buddy, we want to hear more stories about masturbation and blow-up dolls.” Well, it’ll happen…someday.
My decision is usually to say, “Suck me,” and disable open comments. If my commenters don’t want to authenticate themselves, I miss out on related ribaldry and possibly invitations to meet up at Adult World. I can live with it.
But then, once in awhile, I get some really nice, well-rounded comments from people I don’t know—new readers who stumbled across it through the aforementioned keywords and did something amazing, astounding, unexpected:
They read my blog. And sorta like it.
I can’t deny that it’s pretty rewarding to have somebody drop some comment science on me. For awhile it was other bloggers, and I’d add them to my embarrassingly brief blogroll. But there’s been quite a lull—
And by now, I mean “almost a month ago.”
I was going through the junk comments like, “Jesus, what is wrong with people?” and griping about how MovableType needs a “ban by e-mail” function, because that’d make my life way easier (temporarily, anyway), and then I stumbled across an actual, legitimate comment on an old entry. For those too lazy to click the link, here’s the comment:
Don’t know if you’ll see this because this entry is so old and I’m not sure how blogs work, but here goes:
- Something like 10 years ago my best friend’s wife (who works in the industry, she attaches talent to green-lighted projects) told me Mario Van Peebles is gay.
- My wife saw some documentary recently that was about Melvin Van Peebles’ travails in the industry and she told me she thought it was good.
- I googled “Mario Van Peebles is gay” thinking, “hey, I never heard anything about Mario coming out of the closet, I wonder if he’s still in.”
- Found your blog and laughed my ass off reading the Peebles post. Read backward and forward to find out who the cast of characters are. Pretty good stuff.
- You have a Freudian typo in the Peebles post. At one point you’re talking about Maria, but you substitute Gina’s name. Didn’t catch it at first, but then a couple days later I was reading that entry to my wife telling her how I stumbled on your stuff, caught it then.
- You’re a good writer.
Well, Paul, if you’re still checking this blog out: first, sorry (and this goes for all my readers) for never updating. Second, sorry for checking the comments so infrequently that it took me nearly two weeks to see your comment. Third, sorry it took another two weeks to actually get back to you, in the form of this entry. I’m appreciative that once in awhile, people actually read this. Based on the Google hits I see, usually people stumble across this place looking for pornography. As you can see, they’re pretty disappointed.
I’m glad you’re digging the blog, but I actually have a question now: is Mario Van Peebles out of the closet? I honestly don’t know, and my own Google search on the subject didn’t come up with anything promising. It seems to me like he’s one of these guys who’s “in the closet but anyone who knows of him knows the truth,” so why bother being in the closet anymore? Maybe he’s afraid nobody will take him seriously as an action star when Solo 2 comes out.
Also, I’m just wondering about the Melvin Van Peebles documentary. There are several, and I’ve seen a few, but if your wife remembers the title and I haven’t seen it, I’ll check it out.
If you don’t already own it, I am told Baadasssss is available on DVD for $2 at Big Lots, if you have one nearby.
Funny story about the Freudian typo you mention: back in the olden days, when I needed to give “Gina” her name (as you might have read, she was originally known as “The Crush” until I realized giving everyone a “The [Adjective]” name is a pain in the ass, and also until she kinda stopped being my crush and became a regular old friend), I picked Gina sorta haphazardly, after Martin Lawrence’s girlfriend on Martin (as in “Daaaaamn, Gina”). Then, a year or so later—I became friends with an actual person named Gina. This is the folly of fake blog names. I started to call her Maria so people wouldn’t get confused by “fake Gina” versus “real Gina.” So this was less Freudian slip, more “oh shit I forgot to use her fake name.” Either way, I appreciate you letting me know. It’s much more valuable than somebody pointing out my improper use of the past-tense of “to shit,” ALAN.
I’d love to hear from other readers, if any of them dare to comment. Any old obscene entry, at any time, I will probably turn your comment into a blog entry because hey, at least I’m blogging.