I’m No Thoreau, But I Left The Woods With (Some) Clarity…

“I’m looking for something more acoustic, something more authentic and something more private. Blogging is simply too big, too impersonal, and lacks the intimacy that drew me to it.”

Jason Calacanis is one of the “smart guys” I sometimes reference from the mortgage-paying half of my Sybilesque existence. It doesn’t hurt that he loves English bulldogs, either.

But anyway, Calacanis co-founded Weblogs way-back-when, in the pioneering days of the blog phenomenon, the unnamed Web 1.0 that existed prior to someone dubbing all these cool tools and sites Web 2.0. Calacanis understood before most the way in which information is provided and consumed in the world was changing. Quickly. Recently Calacanis “retired” from blogging, and the quote above belongs to him.

The point, you ask?

It is the macroeconomics version of why I “retired” CAA:LAMM.

That simple quote coalesced 12 months of directional anguish for me and this whole medium. It made me realize the entire motivation of this effort had been counterintuitive to why I continued blogging CAA basketball long after book responsibilities had concluded. I wasn’t altogether sure why I kept at it, but I loved it. I loved mid major college basketball and I loved this conference. I loved writing and I loved the intimacy.

I loved that you and I had this thing going that was better than other blogs, other conferences, and other sports. There was this intangible quality that defied description. The best part of a day for me was getting an email from the Drexel fan living in Colorado, thanking me. You can’t create that authenticity on your own.

The crux of the anguish sat squarely in the fact that my motivation, the thing I told myself to rationalize my time, was wholly not authentic. I wanted “big,” and I was a phony. I am a huge believer in karma, and last season was the ultimate karma. CAA: LAMM stunk because I was a victim of my own hubris. Costner as Ness said it best: “I have become what I despise.”

You see, blogging used to be the underdog vehicle; the gathering-place of like and unlike minds. It was where creativity and ideas ruled, because those two critical aspects of society no longer belonged to those who said they had ideas or worked in a creative environment. The Internet has become the great equalizer because it provides the place for things to succeed based on merit, not hype. Quality is vetted, not given.

CAA: LAMM succeeded because it was an us thing, not a me thing. It was ESPN circa 1981, broadcasting the CFL and Australian Rules Football. I remember Warren Moon as an Eskimo and Terry Duel with the funky leather hat and telephone pole legs. I know that 2-1 can be a football score, and a goal is six points and a behind one point.

It was far better programming than 47 SportsCenters each day reporting breathlessly that Derek Jeter managed a second-inning sac fly despite the stigma of not shaving that day.

This is what we lost, and this is what we are going to regain.

So here’s what we’re going to do: write stuff. Chips will fall, but we’re going to write stuff.

To be clear, we’re not becoming the New England Journal of Medicine or a grocery list. We’ll still quote Clint Eastwood and John Coltrane and Spaulding Smails. Predictions will be incorrect but stated. There will still be loosely-related side notes and music references just about every entry. We’ll still have fun-there is such a thing as thoughtful funny. And though the focus will remain on the CAA, we won’t be limiting ourselves.

It’s going to be different, yet familiar. I don’t even know its details nor when it will start, but no matter. We’ll be here for everything that shakes out in the CAA in 2008-09.

Besides, Matt Brady needs a nickname.


~ by mglitos on August 20, 2008.

5 Responses to “I’m No Thoreau, But I Left The Woods With (Some) Clarity…”

  1. I want to sing the theme to “Welcome Back, Kotter”


    Welcome back,
    Your dreams were your ticket out.

    Welcome back,
    To that same old place that you laughed about.

    Well the names have all changed since you hung around,
    But those dreams have remained and they’re turned around.

    Who’d have thought they’d lead ya (Who’d have thought they’d lead ya)
    Here where we need ya (Here where we need ya)

    Yeah we tease him a lot cause we’ve hot him on the spot, welcome back,
    Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back.

  2. Oh, happy day. Happy day indeed. The CAA fan needs a haven for their madness.

    As for Brady…well, this Mason fan will just wait for another day to rankle the opposition. (I think rankle is a word.)

  3. Really looking forward to the posts.

  4. Stripping away all the existential angst, what you’re saying is that Mason screwed everything up by making it to the Final Four. I agree.

    Wecome back.

  5. Don’t you dare strip away the existential angst. we need that in the mix with the info and music quotations.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: