Blogiversary 15

If there’s one thing you can be sure of, as a writer, it is, after having written, the feeling that what you just wrote pretty much completely sucks. It is the anticipation of that feeling that serves as one of the primary deterrents to starting anything in the first place. I mean, who wants to go through all that effort just to disappoint yourself?

But I woke up today realizing it was my “blogiversary” (for lack of a better word—seriously, is there a better word?), and a big one, at that. Fifteen years ago, after much urging, and more frustration, I joined the madding crowd, and, though I didn’t realize it at the time, began one of my bigger life transitions—from god-knows-what I was, to journalist.

For the last half of these last 15 years, I haven’t done much actual blogging, feeling that, as I have often commented, the web is now lousy with hot takes. But I still defend the blog as a valid journalistic format, and, as much as I want to spend most of my time deep diving into dark waters, I still often miss the low-stakes thrill of an almost daily shout into the void.

Since I last posted at this place (or this place, or this place), I have had gigs at slightly more trafficked websites and magazines, and I have written a thing or two or three or four hundred. (Maybe I’ll post a few links.) And now, taking stock after a year that is pretty much defined by taking stock, I have decided that there is maybe a second thing writers can be sure of: after the certain initial disappointment, there is the Dorothy Parker-ian sense of satisfaction, and the conclusion, five, or 10, or 15 years later that maybe all of that work didn’t suck quite so completely after all.

I won’t toast to the next 15 years (like, crap, 15 years is a long fuckin’ time), but, in the grand tradition of my original blog (“a journal of politics, popular culture, and mixed drinks”), I will toast. And, in the tradition of previous blogiversaries, I will offer a cocktail recipe—this time one I crafted myself for drinking during those agonizing presidential debates. Cheers? Cheers!

The Black Helicopter

1 ½ oz Dark Rum
½ oz Rhum Agricole
1 ½ oz Amaro Nonino
1 ½ oz Aperol
1 oz lime juice

Mix all ingredients in a beaker, stir with ice, and strain into double old fashioned glasses each containing one large-format ice cube. Garnish with a lime twist.

Makes two.

Oh, yes—some of the last seven years… 

7 Years on, Sailors Exposed to Fukushima Radiation Seek Their Day in Court

Pilgrim’s Progress: Inside the American Nuclear-Waste Crisis

Key safety system not installed at site of deadly Amtrak derailment

Older safety technology could have prevented Amtrak tragedy

The Amtrak Tragedy Has Roots in the Swamp

Amtrak crash: state-of-the art safety gear was operational at time of fatal collision

States Are Using Taxpayer Money to Greenwash Dirty Nuclear Power 

Psychologists worked with CIA, Bush administration to justify torture

New ‘bomb train’ rules welcomed with a bang