Despite the fact that I declare myself a terrible baseball fan, I still do keep somewhat of an ear to the ground when it comes to happenings in the game, and happenings with the Atlanta Braves. And despite the fact that I’ve long separated myself from the site I used to write for, Talking Chop, I still visit every now and then, because in spite of the fact that their daily writing assignments have become somewhat robotic, as the guys running the site now are excellent analyzers of raw, cold facts, but don’t really have unique voices. However, they have the ability to generate some opinions from their analysis of raw, cold facts that are still preferable over the talking heads of any other mainstream outlet.
Anyway, on a recent visit, I noticed that there was a topic of how the site was, yet again, changing hands in operational management. Apparently, the day-to-day management of a website was difficult to juggle amidst daily analysis of numbers for the previous management, whom all apparently took steps back to go into purely writing roles, leaving the management side to a new girl, whom I actually find refreshing that she’s not a proverbial bean-counting stat-geek.
She inquired with the community on suggestions to what she could take into consideration for making the site better for the future. Naturally, being the internet, there were sloughs of sarcastic rebuttals and everyone trying their hardest to be an e-comedian that I had to trudge through, but every now and then there were constructive suggestions and requests that people made that could and probably should be taken into consideration.
But then there was one remark in particular that caught my eye.
And then made me feel all warm and fuzzy.
“Roy Hobbs” was my internet pseudonym on that site, named after naturally, the greatest fictional baseball player (and demolisher of food) in all of literature. I didn’t often use my real name, because I (still) think people on the internet are psychopaths, and I didn’t really want people to know in the first place, although it came out more than I’d like to have admitted.
When people refer to “my basement,” it’s in reference to weekly column I did for the site, that didn’t really talk about the Braves, so much as much as it put the spotlight on all of the Braves’ divisional opponents. It was originally entitled “Things Read in Other Moms’ Basements,” because of the popular perception that all baseball fans on the internet were fat geeky nerds who lived in their moms’ basements, and it was primarily a weekly link dump of stories about the Mets, Marlins, Nationals and Phillies, as well as somewhat of a sounding board for myself to share some opinions here and there.
I didn’t think it was at all that popular, because it went up on Saturdays, didn’t have nearly the page views as some of the stuff that happens during the week, and not nearly the comment counts as actual Braves-related news tended to generate. But the day I declared my final column, people came out of the woodwork to wish me well, and it honestly did make me feel a little melancholy at the whole scenario.
Regardless, I was kind of touched to see that not only am I still remembered in that community, they’re asking for me back, by name. By people I’ve never met, and barely knew when I was still actively there. Additionally, the comment is highlighted in green, because of a function on the site’s peripheral that turns a comment green when it’s “recommended” enough times, which is the equivalent of repeated thumbsing-up. So at least five people agreed with the opinion to bring me back, without having to say it.
Ultimately, even if I were asked to come back (I haven’t been), I don’t think I would. Frankly, I don’t watch enough baseball, much less the Braves at this point to be remotely qualified in being capable of writing about the team, anymore. And despite the fact that I’d be capable of injecting way more personality and wit into my posts than any of the guys currently writing for the site, when the day is over, I probably wouldn’t be able to keep up with the actual facts that matter on account of my increased ambivalence.
Regardless, it’s just a pleasant feeling to know that I’m not just remembered by the community, but missed and actively wished back.