Good Riddance Year Won
My sincere condolences for sticking around for Year Zoo.
Charge of the Good Citizens brigade!
Year Won has come to an end.
Year Zoo begins.
Thanks to all of you for sticking with me through this year.
One year ago I sincerely didn’t think this place would still be going.
Year Won was a series of trials and bleats. An experiment in observing, writing, and sometimes not editing.
A triumph of the swill.
I tackled a range of subjects that sometimes left things drifting in the doldrums, often taking the wind out of my own sails.
I risked losing readers by bouncing from Plandemocide to geopolitics, to Ukronazis, to poison dwarfs, to economics, to digital culture, guns, observations from Mexico, to mediations on the appropriate gauge of piano wire for poison dwarfs.
There’s a scene from that masterful independent film of the 1990s called Basquiat. The eponymous painter asks his friend Benny played by Benicio Del Toro, “How long do you think it takes to get famous?'“
As a proper friend does, Benny tells him the truth.
“Three. Six to get rich. But once you make it. Boom, airborne! You gotta keep doing the same things, otherwise, people are going to get mad at you. Which, they will anyway.”
It’s the age-old tale of celebrity. We lift them up, to tear them down.
I don’t delude myself into thinking I’ve “made it” or that I’m celebrated in any fashion, but I could see from the metrics that all things horror and vaccine played well with readers.
All the pieces on Lions roaring and retribution were well celebrated and I could have kept doing the same things, in the same way, but would you have believed it to be sincere if you detected the same formula day after day?
Formulas are for mathematicians and racing drivers.
I figured the aforementioned risks of covering as many interconnected subjects would be worth it in the long run—some people will drop out, but Good Citizens will stick around for the journey.
Plandemics don’t last forever and sooner or later the ball needs to move down the field. It’s a risk that lost me many subscribers, both free and those in the flock. I hold no ill will to those who have departed this meadow and wish them well in their new ruminations.
Damn. This is turning into a self-indulgent retrospective when all I wanted to do was say Thank You! from the bottom of my bleating heart.
I also wanted to let you know a satirical novel is in the works which is why this place has gone from 14-18 monthly posts down to a dozen. It will be available for preorder on April 1st with a publication (shipping) date set for June.
I’m still navigating the cover art with an old friend from high school who is a copyright and trademark attorney.
I don’t want to get sued by Klaus Schwab.
Though if he did, it would certainly help sales.
Free digital copies (.PDF, .AZW, .MOBI) will be emailed to those who have joined the Founders Flock.
A few new pledges based on mild Year Won regrets:
No more mocking other subs. This place will not become a TMZ attention-grabbing cesspool for trifling Plandemic gossip involving individual figures. If that’s what you want, you know where to go.
You will never see the words BREAKING! or EXCLUSIVE! here. Nothing posted on any substack is exclusive. It’s all pilfered from somewhere else.
I’m not a reporter. I don’t break anything other than the occasional beer bottle after midnight, followed by wind in bed.
No chasing individual stories, tweets, sideshows, carnivals, jugglers, or street hookers. Today my inbox was bombed by six posts from a single substack, all of them with content I had already viewed.
There will be no using or taking any government-offered statistics seriously.
I like all comments even if I don’t agree with the sentiment. It’s a way of showing you that I’ve read your comment, and I thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. I would respond to all your comments if I could but have to be selective.
As for the comment section, I’ve been blasted into the barbed wire by how insightful and constructive the comments have been. It warms my fluffy heart to see Good Citizens offering health advice, practical advice, encouragement, support, remorse, empathy, and good cheer.
You are all a treasure to have on board this ship.
I still don’t know where the hell we’re going, but we’ll figure it out when we get there.
It almost makes me want to download the Substack app and open up a whole digital community of Good Citizens.
I’ll consider it.
That’s it. Otherwise, the only rules are the first two rules and a new third rule:
Devot fifteen minutes of each day to something that makes you smile.
William Hunter Duncan just started learning guitar.
Less than four months ago.
We are living the same timeline but we are not the same man.
He has the courage to document his guitar-playing progress on YouTube, and I must say it is a testament to his dedication to consistency. Thirty minutes or more each day, every day can take you to places you never imagined.
For my birthday last October, I ordered a cheap parlor guitar. It’s a three-quarters sized acoustic. Blues artists who couldn’t afford the full-sized guitar used to play Parlor guitars way way back in da’ day.
When it arrived, like William Hunter Duncan, I didn’t know a single chord.
Today my fingertips are raw, the carpal joints ache, and having learned Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here, The Verve’s The Drugs Don’t Work, and a Green Day song I fear I may never write again.
Tickets to my world tour go on sale in August.
Wait. This story needs some back—like the silver railing in the above photo, it needs perspective.
In the 1990s my brother and I played in a power pop band. Partly alternative, partly inspired by British Invasion bands of the 1960s.
It was when Portland was still half a port and a land worthy of inhabiting.
It was another life.
We played all the clubs around the PNW for a few years and it was one the best times of my life. We recorded an EP in the same studio where Elliot Smith recorded Either/or. For a few months, we shared a rehearsal space with The Dandy Warhols.
It's one thing I'd go back to doing in the right situation just for the rush and to relive my dearly departed past.
But here’s the point of all that—I played bass. And I never learned to read guitar chords. I never learned guitar.
I always had to yell to my brother who wrote all the songs, sang, and played guitar: "What are the notes?"
He’d never miss a beat and simply yell into the microphone, "G! C! G! F#!"
The last time I picked up a bass guitar was when the band at a friend’s wedding called me up on stage to play Tracy Chapman’s Talkin’ About A Revolution. That was in the summer of 2007.
When that Gretsch parlor arrived in late October, I picked it up, went on YouTube, and searched: First acoustic guitar lesson.
Again, I didn’t know a single guitar chord.
Each day since I practiced for at least fifteen minutes. Sometimes thirty, but never more than that.
William Hunter Duncan has inspired me to take a bit of a risk that I normally wouldn’t.
I figure I can use it as a marker of progress. At the end of Year Zoo and Year Free, I will upload the same song to see if it has less than the thirty errors present here.
Maybe the guitar thing is all a metaphor for this Substack.
Sometimes I’m ahead of the beat. Sometimes behind.
Eventually, I find the rhythm and there’s a bleating heart and you are all right there with me to feel it.
And I thank you for that.
Good Riddance Year Won.
Time grabs you by the wrist, directs you where to go
So make the best of this test, and don't ask why
It's not a question, but a lesson learned in time
It's something unpredictable
But in the end, it's right
I hope you had the time of your life
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Congratulations on your first Substack anniversary, The Good Citizen! 🥂
I appreciate that you apply your satirical wit and sharp observational skills to a variety of topics, and I found your Ukraine posts especially illuminating (I shared “Ukraine in the Membrane” with many a bewildered soul).
Here’s to another pasture-raised, grass-fed, mRNA-free year of bleating! 🐑
Congratulations GC on a great year! I love the diversity of topics and the genuineness of your writing. With all the madness of the last couple of years I can honestly say you're a beacon of hope and your humor has brought many smiles to my face. Thanks for all you do!