i am too a good man

On Monday night I posted a lengthy entry here about my parents and the fact that they have finally stumbled onto this blog of mine. In the process of telling the story I asked if some of you would take a moment and write a note to my parents on my behalf, explaining to them that, while it may appear as though MM.com is a stupid waste of time, it actually provides a vital service to the world. The response has been heartwarming to say the least. Several of you have written in very nice, very touching, testimonials. As I sit here reading them, my eyes full of tears, I feel like George Bailey at the end of Its a Wonderful Life, after he discovers, No man is a failure who has friends.

So, in the spirit of the holidays, I thought that Id reprint a few of the letters this evening. And, if you like them, I will reprint more tomorrow.

So, mom and dad, if youre still tuned in, here are some letters from my readers. This first one comes from a fellow by the name of Dan Gillotte.

Hi Mr. and Mrs. Maynard,

I found Mark through Crimewave and have been a subscriber for years, but I especially enjoy his blog. Why? Well, I enjoy the political angle quite a bit and its regularity is… well… predictable. Mark posts almost every day and I know that when I come by I will find something of interest. Just the other day Mark turned me on to a cool potter who won the Booker Prize. I then shared it with dozens of my friends who thought that I was the coolest web surfer ever thanks to your boy!

Also, your son promptly replies to e-mails which that Howard Dean and George
Bush never do.

For the record, I am the 32 year old general manager of a co-op grocery store in Texas.

Dan Gillotte

PS your son did not send me any special articles on Ball shaving in exchange for writing this.

Wasnt that nice? He reads because I’m “predictable”!

And heres one from a woman that apparently lives right here in Ypsilanti.

To the mother and father of Mark Maynard:

My name is Laura Bien. I’m a journalist with a master’s degree who lives in Ypsi and works for an Ann Arbor magazine. I would like to tell you how much I enjoy Mark’s website. It offers me thoughtful analysis of current events, an irreverent take on golden cows, a lot of humor, and a local voice. Mark’s site and his and Linette’s products such as Crimewave and the clothing line represent a concrete contribution to the vitality of the Ypsi community, instead of the apathy that most people his and my age have towards their communities.

I would say, if I may be so bold, that you may be proud of a young man who is engaged in and concerned about local and national issues and who brings much enjoyment to the many people who patronize his site and buy his products. Of course his site is humorously ribald and frank at times, and I imagine that may be a bit surprising, though I can’t speak for you. But I would chalk this reaction, if it exists, to the ever-present generation gap that has existed since the beginning of time, and not to any mean-spiritedness. I have a very positive impression of Mark.

Thanks for considering my letter.
Yours truly,
Laura Bien

Wow! How nice was that? You see, mom and dad, Im a vital part of the community! And my writing isnt juvenile its humorously ribald.

And heres one Im not quite so proud of. Its apparently from a reformed pornographer. Its not really written in the form of a letter to my folks, but I figure theyll get the point.

I used to create pornographic web sites for a living. It was good money, but I was afraid of anyone — let alone my parents — finding out. I became so paranoid, I was registering domains with fake names with fake addresses and getting my mail from a post office box in another county. I became so consumed with this double life that when I moved, I didn’t tell my parents. Six years later they think I still live in Boston. It’s not such a big deal unless they want to visit. Then I have to fly east and spend the weekend showing them the sites and going on a whale watch. One time they surprised me with news of a trip and I had to buy a last-minute ticket which Northwest conveniently soaked me for to the tune of twelve hundred bucks.

I’m between jobs right now, so that probably won’t impress your parents. I am only fifteen credits short of a masters degree, but that ain’t gonna happen, so that’s strike two. If there is one redeeming quality about me it’s probably that drive a really, really cool car. If your father is into old-school Celicas, then I think I can help your case.

I read your blog because I read your magazine when I can find it. I think you are kinda funny. I wish I could tell your parents that your writings helped me through a really difficult time in my life, but they wouldn’t buy that. If you can’t come with anything better to tell them, let them know the stories about Foxie really touched me.

I know, Kinda Funny isnt the highest praise in the world, but I wanted to include this letter if only to prove to my parents that it could be far worse. I could be a pornographer who doesnt even have his Masters degree. (gasp!)

Actually, while were on this subject, my friend Chelsea wrote and said something to the effect of, It could be worse. Just think of all the stuff that Michael Jacksons parents are having to deal with. So, mom and dad, please keep that in mind as well. Your son could be an accused child molester with a nose like a well-worn sliver of Ivory soap.

I got other letters too, very nice ones, but I dont want to bore you all with them now. (Maybe tomorrow.) Tonight, Ill just print one more. This one comes from a man in Atlanta named Ken.

I found this graphic on the internet and thought it might be something that your parents might be interested in.

I dont think that my parents are probably all that interested in roadside urine jugs, but I do appreciate the thought, Ken, and I think that this nicely illustrates one of the best things about the internet Apparently, roadside human waste became a little problem yesterday in Seattle and here it is less than 24 hours later and I already not only know about it here in Michigan, but I have a map outlining it’s course across the US. That, mom and dad, is the power that Ive tapped into here on the internet. My finger is firmly on the pulse of America’s urine-swollen underbelly. Ive got people like Ken positioned all over, constantly on the lookout for breaking news. So, I may not be wealthy, or even remotely successful, but one thing is certain, I know about human waste stories before they break in the national press. I am like a God.

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One Comment

  1. Ken
    Posted June 19, 2008 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    “America’s urine-swollen underbelly”
    Now that was funny stuff!

    Jugs of Pee

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