(photo from FoodAndPaper )
Apparently, I'm not everyone's cup of tea. As a matter of fact, it appears that I'm some folk's beef guts.
Yesterday's rant - which concerned the buying of milk, and whether or not it should be put into a bag upon checkout - garnered many interesting comments. Those made at this website were uniformly nice in tone, even when the person making the comment didn't agree with me. I can live with that. I did ask for comments, after all. However, when the page was linked from another site (the very wonderful Universal Hub, administered by the equally wonderful Adam Gaffin) the comments took on a decidedly nastier tone. For instance...
By anon (not verified) | Mon, 05/12/2008 - 9:56am
Fifteen paragraphs. Sounds like a need to fill blog space. If you don't have any thing to say, don't say it. No one needs your blog entry today.
Actually, I believe it was 21 paragraphs.
By pierce | Mon, 05/12/2008 - 10:13am
why link to this tripe?
Adam was kind enough to give his rationale for linking to the tripe...
Because I'm also easily annoyed?
By adamg | Mon, 05/12/2008 - 10:15am
No, don't worry, I don't have to pop blood-pressure pills at the supermarket or anything, but when I saw the post, I thought, yeah, why don't they just put the milk in a bag. And, yeah, my life must be going pretty well if that's what I think about.
Indeed. My life is damned nice, too. That's why I think about things like my milk not being bagged. I can afford to do so. However, I certainly didn't expect to have my writing compared to a pot roast's offal.
Oh, well. I suppose I should consider the source. Or, I would consider the source, if I knew the source. "Pierce" comments quite a bit over at U-Hub, but beyond commentary there, I have no idea who he/she is. The same for "Anon", of course. This is a major problem with teh interwebs. Folks can take pot(roast)shots at you and leave you no real target to return fire at. Which is actually OK, because I have no desire to get into a flame war. All I wanted to do yesterday was vent a bit of steam, which I tried to do in a manner that might give a small laugh or two along the way. If someone doesn't like my writing - or even considers it the equivalent of the 1st, 2nd and/or 3rd stomach of a ruminant - that's life. Degustibus Non Est Disputadum, as my grandfather used to say whenever anyone complained about the swastika tattoo on his forehead.
Some folks felt that I truly hated the baggers and considered myself a superior life form.
By Whit (not verified) | Mon, 05/12/2008 - 11:01am
Baggers are in an impossible situation. If they ask if you want a bag they get shit, and if they just stick stuff in a bag automatically they get shit. They cannot win. Think about you position in the food-chain. Where is the bagger? What kind of position are you in that you feel it is justifiable to be a little bitch and scowl and moan at a GROCERY STORE BAGGER! People in this society are so goddamed unaware of themselves that they don't know how to behave with each other and take out their aggression and frustrations on the weak at every opportunity. Just tell the guy you do or don't want whatever in a bag.
To which I replied...
I assure you that I do not berate baggers or cashiers. Every person I interact with at the market gets a smile from me, and they give me smiles in return. When I ask that they put my milk in a bag, I say, "Please."
I do believe I said that I refuse to use self-checkouts. This is mainly because the folks at the store know me, I know them, we like each other, and I see no reason for me to hasten their losing their jobs.
Do I really need to keep spelling out that I exaggerate somewhat for comic effect?
(Whether you find the effect comic is up to you. De Gustibus Non Est Disputadum, as my grandfather used to say as he projected porno on the side of our house.)
Another fellow seemed to feel that I was looking for a rationale to be cheap.
Quit whining... By stephencaldwell | Mon, 05/12/2008 - 10:31am And just buy the tote bags. It's not as though that 99c (the price at Stop & Shop) is going to drain your coffers (at least I hope it doesn't).
Again, I replied.
Thank you, Adam, for the link. And for the defense. You're a nice guy.
Anon, Pierce, et al - Adam has done you a service. You now know not to visit my blog in the future. I know it was painful to go there this time and discover cow innards. Next time you see my stuff linked, you'll know better.
StephenCaldwell - I'm hardly going to be broken by coughing up 99 cents or whatever. The point was that the markets will actually save money, in the long run, if they give the bags away. In addition, they will be helping to save the environment.
I had hoped that I put enough small bits of humor into the piece to let readers know that I wasn't really going to pop a cap in some bagger's ass if my milk remained bagless. Humor is subjective, of course, so if you didn't read it that way, my bad, I guess. Suldog
I'll be the first to admit that I don't take criticism very well. If I felt that I was writing something that would annoy so many people, I probably wouldn't have published it. It is never my intention here to polarize or alienate. And yesterday was just me writing about one of the little things in life that annoys me. Not a big deal. I assumed it would be taken in the spirit with which it was intended: just an obviously overblown rant concerning something fairly inconsequential. Some folks would agree, some would disagree. Some would give me good suggestions, which many of you did and I thank you. The last thing I expected was invective, and to have my writing compared to bovine entrails.
Oh, well. Some folks consider tripe a delicacy.
(Unfortunately, I'm not one of them. Yuck! The stuff grosses me out.)
Tomorrow, or the next day, I'll be back with something utterly non-controversial; something that the most contentious person in the world might not have a problem with. I think maybe I'll do a piece about how puppy dogs are really swell, especially when compared to Hitler.
Then again, when somebody believes that your writing is comparable to Bossie's digestive tract, there isn't much you can do to please them, I suppose. Oh, and Anon? You're what I write about when I want to fill space with nothing.
Soon, with non-Nazi puppy dogs.