*Note: I’m not affiliated in any way with the real Keith Hernandez.
I’m another pseudonymous blogger. And why? Because somewhere there’s a writer talking about the gritty intangibles of David Eckstein or the clubhouse winning smile of Jeff Francoeur or the beauty of a sacrifice bunt and if I don’t make fun of that bad writer, who will? And beyond the world of baseball and its Shaughnessys who whine about blogging stat nerds in their mother’s basement, there are Thomas Friedmans passing off trite common sense facts as world breaking discoveries, asshole libertarians like Megan McArdle thinking poor people without healthcare deserve to die, there are sanctimonious professors on the left thinking it’s their job to push politics in the classroom, there are snooty right wing politicians wanting to set college curriculum, and, well, there are both liberals and conservatives misunderstanding and misappropriating religion. Someone’s gotta rile shit up.
But that doesn’t really get at why I’m pseudonymous. I’ll quote Drew Magary, blogger for Deadspin and KSK, who used to go by the pen name Big Daddy Drew back when he worked for an ad company, before he started making money as a writer: “What’s to explain. I have a fucking job and I don’t want to get dooced.”
Paid writers hate anonymity. They think it makes you a coward. Don’t hide behind your words. And If you can’t take the consequences, maybe you shouldn’t be saying it. Which is bullshit, because the people saying that have writing jobs. They get paid to use a creative outlet. I’d like to see George Will bash teacher unions if he were a second year teacher still waiting for tenure instead of a rich syndicated columnist who can say whatever the fuck he wants, even if its a screed against those whippersnappers and their blue jeans. I’d like to see those big shots on the New York Times Editorial Board criticize Wal Mart’s institutional sexism (which they were absolutely right to do) if they were women worrying about keeping low paying jobs. Well, that young teacher deserves a platform to speak out about education reform. We, as a society, need to hear Wal Mart workers speak out against that low wage paying, union busting hegemony.
But people who speak out get in trouble. They risk getting fired if they’re not in a union or don’t have tenure. Bosses don’t like rabble rousers. To them, it’s not enough that you do your job from 9 to 5. They’re scouring Google from 6 to 8, making sure you don’t speak out for the oppressed, or make fun of bad writers, or tell poop jokes, or God for-flippin’-bid, use swear words. For many, the only way to write without risk is with a pen name.
But, I’m not doing this to avoid criticism. Anyone is free to comment on this blog and call me (or any potential co-writers) an asshole. I can dish it and take it. Call me a dumb pile of doo doo. Tell me that data is not the plural of anecdote. Go on your own blog and write a post describing what an idiot that Keith Stache is. Just don’t tell my boss. Which you can’t anyway. Because you don’t know who I am.
And this, my friends, is why I blog! For truth, justice, and my own fun.