Thursday, January 19, 2006

They's Some CRRRRRAAAAAZZZYYYY Peoples Out There...

I know, I'm one of them.

Seriously though, there's crazy and then there's just nucking futs. Some peepz is just a few porn stars short of a daisy chain, you know?

I introduced you to Loretta and the Fucktardians, an epic battle similar to Cromwell's Roundheads vs... my English history fails me. You get the idea, though. I told you about Pajamas Media and its many delightful brands of oatmeal-flavored oatmeal, and how the blogosphere outside PM has hovered over the heads of the bloglebrities heading the thing and pooped like so many enraged and virus-filled grackles.

Now there's popular bloggers and the bloggers who kind of, um, stalk them.

First let's deal with an issue you might see pop up here from time to time.

A long time ago, in an internet far, far away, your buddy loki started blogging. His first blog and template were some of the ugliest, busiest, craziest shit you've ever seen. Rapidly, lokster tired of the criticisms heaped upon his lowly template by his adoring fans, and he realized something -- on the web, functionality, grace, intuitive use all matter.

Part and parcel of Google's thundering titanic success as it daily dominates the web? Simplicity and ease of use, bitches. You may not remember the interfaces for some of the competing search engines before Google began to punk everyone else, but loki does, and let me tell you, they all saw what was going down really fast, and stepped to.

Loki picked this here template for one reason only -- it was functional, easy to look at, and didn't get in the fucking way. Okay?

What I'm getting at it is this, friends -- if your blog is uglier than dogshit, well, I'm just gonna say so here. The sad thing about that is occasionally a really piss-poor eye for feng shui de web may accompany a remarkably well-tuned writer's voice. I can suffer through that, but not too often.

Just to make everyone feel better, I will tell you right off that no one I will criticize either now or in the future can ever come close to the vast, yawning, shambling horror that is profiles tend to reach a horrific new depth of awfulness when it comes to peepz "Pimping Out" their pages.

Let's see... Pimps -- flashy. Long purple suede overcoats with ermine collars and white leather fedoras. Bejeweled sunglasses even at night, a cigarette in a holder and a completely unnecessary cane with carved golden rottweiler head on the top. That's the pop-culture image of the pimp. Well, when some of those kids at go a-pimpin', they REALLY go a-pimpin', in the web design sense of things. They take the average young person's savvy about html and css and proceed to royally fuck with the browser of every visitor with two too many files in their internet cache forever afterwards. God love 'em. For the sophisticated surfer, is easily always the worst experience one can have, aesthetically speaking.

What the hell was I talking about? Oh, yeah -- nutjobs stalking bloggers. Really, this all connects, somehow.

Think that shit don't happen? It do.

People will be inspired to start a blog of their own, and then make entries in it detailing sexual fantasies about the blogger who inspired them.

Some bloggers embrace this element in their readers and make it work for them -- Glenn Reynolds, the Instapundit, has "blog children." Glenn is still alive and well, so his approach seems to work, and he is the Big Dog, after all, no matter how boring his blog actually is.

The stalking that inspired this entry appears to be happening to a guy named Dan Riehl. It has been speculated elsewhere that yours truly is Mr. Riehl, or a buddy of his who blogs about things criminal, a Mr. Huff.

Just keep playing that "Price is Wrong, Bitch," play-off theme music in your head, cause the score and that guessing game so far is wrong, and wronger. Yes, I'm a fairly-experienced blogger, but what makes anyone think that Loki isn't doing this just to see what real blog traffic is like? Maybe. The two guys I've seen mentioned as someone's guesses at possibly being the little man behind the curtain of Loki are very comfortable with their blog traffic, from what I've seen. If they ain't, something's wrong with 'em.

That said, yours truly did become aware through various channels that Dan Riehl, who has sometimes outpaced Michelle Malkin and Andrew Sullivan in blog traffic, has at least one problem blogger nipping at his heels like a rabid chihuahua, so I figgered I'd just have a look-see.

First there's the "Carnivorous Conservative."

Dan is just some dude from up north somewhere, as far as I can tell. He has a background in journalism, but appears to do his real work in the business world in some manner. Like Steve Huff, Dan apparently snagged what I assume is a paying gig from his blogging, at The Internet Crime Library.

Dan's generally political, looks like a conservative with slashes of social liberalism in his makeup. He also writes a lot about pretty missing white girls and people gettin' killed in bad ways. Riehl made his blogging fame off the still-missing corpse of Natalee fucking Holloway. Don't think he meant to, it just seemed that Holloway's disappearance from Aruba in the spring of 2005 was the beginning of a terrible thing for her family and friends, and a great thing for some bloggers.

So Dan got a following all his own. A cult of Riehlians who post ad nauseam in his comments. Among their number are some pretty sharp and perceptive folks, and Dan is a mensch about acknowledging that sometimes it isn't him who breaks news or comes up with something ahead of the "mainstream" press, but his commenters. One wonders why some of them don't just go blog themselves, but I doubt Riehl will look that gift horse in the mouth -- I wouldn't.

Dan's kind of cranky, but what conservative isn't? He generally seems to tell it like it is, though I suspect he's posted a couple of times with a shot of Cutty in one hand and an evil chuckle in his throat. He seems a good egg, and pleasantly humbled by how widely-read he is, at least in the blogging sense of things. (Here's an eye-opener for you -- what a blogger would consider kick-ass traffic, say, 15,000 readers a day, would be the most suck-ass ratings in history for a TV show. That should give one perspective on just how awesomely popular this whole blogging thing is.)

Dan's had his run-ins with other bloggers, I saw from his archives. One was Michelle Malkin, who actually has posted more than once in Dan's comments herself. The run-in seemed to involve Saddam Hussein, a porno movie, and 220 lbs. of vanilla pudding, or something, but it also appeared to blow over quickly (I was only making one of those three things up, you guess which one). Pretty sure Dan had some sort of contretemps with Ms. Loretta Serrano/Dillon/Something as well, perhaps because she was jealous of the popularity of Dan's blog when the Holloway case was all the rage.

What makes the Loki sympathetic to Mr. Riehl is that though the man is widely-read and though he is obviously prone to get his crank on unexpectedly, he seems to have kept his head. Some bloggers get a little "fan following" and become megalomaniacal fucktards, others run screaming and hide like they're J. D. fucking Salinger jonesing for a lukewarm cup o' pee because they seem to have actually thought all this was private. Idiots.

Riehl has kept his blog's template resolutely the same, he's written about whatever the fuck he wanted to, including most recently porn movies containing Colin Ferrell's prodigious and pale member spearing the cocoa skin of a certain Playboy Playmate. He kind of does his thing and if you read, well that's cool with him.

It seems it was the Holloway mystery that brought someone stalking Dan's way.

Meet the crazy fucker or fuckette currently playing Glenn Close to Dan's bewildered Michael Douglas --

This person either wants to screw Dan or kill him, or screw him then kill him, I'm not sure. One thing is for sure, whoever writes seedyrum"musings snipes at Dan-o whenever possible. Like this:

"...[O]nline routine news reporting doesn't generate enough revenue to pay anything. Super-hot stories do - I imagine that if Dan had monetized his blog, the Natalee Holloway story would have made him quite a bit. The quantity of super-hot stories is (fortunately, in the long-term view) limited. ( Dan Riehl is full of crap. He wouldn't know truth if it walked up and slapped the taste out of his mouth)."

If you found that hard to follow, don't feel bad. Right there is cue number 1 that Dan Riehl's hatah (that's "hater" for you un-schooled folks out there), is seedy and probably over-indulging in quite a bit of rum, or just flat-out nuts. Each entry is nothing but a big block of undelineated text, and fortunately perhaps for Dan, that shit is really hard to read for more than one blog entry.

Here's another sample that bears explaining -- it looks like seedyrum took quotes from Dan's active comments section, so the names you will see are the people quoted. This is a good example of kook-ism in the blogosphere, this lack of formatting text -- though real text is used and what is said makes a sort of sense, the lack of formatting and inserting of comments by the blogger with no paragraph breaks lets you know you're reading the equivalent of the quietly crazy person you passed in Wal-Mart last night who mutters obscenely the moment they can't find what they want in the electronics department. Obscenely, but distinctly:

"Posted by: Jennifer Cannon Monday, January 16, 2006 at 11:05 PM Trust are not missing anything. She has nothing new to add either. I do enjoy playing "Where in the World is Beth Twitty" every night though. She was on the set with Greta, so I guess DC tonight. Posted by: pathenry Monday, January 16, 2006 at 11:12 PM Nothing new to add and yet she's there...this is probably going to be remembered as one of the low points in cable news. The sacrifice of integrity for sensationalism. Posted by: Jennifer Cannon Monday, January 16, 2006 at 11:16 PM So true. I could not believe tonight with the journal going over crap that has been debunked. I don't get Greta. Guess it is all ratings to her. No sense of professionalism. Posted by: gagal_05 Monday, January 16, 2006 at 11:18 PM Although these names represent three "different" persons they all sound like Dan Riehl..."

Now I am the Knight Who Says, "Duh." It doesn't occur to our pal seedyrum in their sad and overheated brain that in the blogosphere, the tendency is to go talk to bloggers you identify with. Not always, but it's a basic truism, and the best argument that such a statement is true can be found by referring you back to Glenn Reynolds's "blog children [of the corn.]."

Hey, you know what? Even if those three folks were Dan Riehl... so?

The problem appears to be this -- Dan Riehl covered Natalee Holloway's disappearance very closely. More than once, he was ahead of the mainstream news, even though they were hot on the case themselves. What happened was this -- somewhere late in the summer of 2005, Dan Riehl realized that the whole thing was way-over-hyped media filler bullshit. Even if the Kalpoes and dutch kid Joran van der Slut-er-Sloot were guilty, there was simply not enough of a case against the bastards to whip this dead horse any longer. It's the real world, and some mysteries don't get solved. If the evidence isn't there, van der Sloot is free to go to Holland and date-rape himself silly (as opposed to all that good lovin' he'd receive in the Aruban lock-up), and the Kalpoes are free to do... uh, whatever it is Kalpoes do. Dan was pissed. He was pissed at the media machine, as embodied by Greta van Susteren on Fox, in particular, for the way they used Holloway to churn out ratings, and reading back through Dan's old entries, it looks like he was pissed at himself for falling into the trap. Ever since, his coverage of the Holloway case has been uniformly negative towards the American view of it (damned Dutch kid and those foreign boys kilt that girl), how our media pounced on it, how certain news outlets in Aruba (Jossy Mansur, heart attack #73 is just around the corner, bro), flayed it alive, and how Beth Holloway Twitty, Natalee's perenially pink-faced Mom, became a media darling, of a sort.

Funny thing is, Dan is allowed to change his mind, though a careful read of his blog does make it seem it was a bit of a hairpin turn, and also, it sure-damn looks like seedyrum or someone with a similar axe to grind was after Dan's ass before he did a u-turn and decided the whole story was an unfortunate load of bullshit, and peepz had totally forgotten about pretty little Natalee, who was the most important part of the whole deal, anyways. I wasn't able to find it again, but in the summer I recall coming across something that was about Aruba, and appeared to have been begun just to compete with Dan's blog.

Point being, for seedyrum or whoever, this ain't about Natalee Holloway, either -- it's about trying to knock a popular blogger off what they perceive as a perch they deserve. If you don't think such ad-hominem blogging is totally about whining like that, you're wrong.

In its way, that's just stalking, yo. That means seedyrum is nuts. If you think it's perfectly okay for them to sissy-slap at Dan Riehl as much as they do, well you're right -- it is their perogative. But it's nearly all they do. Seedyrum tries to muse about crime in the news, and what-not, but they seem to come back to Riehl, sooner or later.

This probably bugs Riehl, but if he ever reads this, I'd simply say -- did you look at the blog, Dan? There is something just retarded going on there. There is no organization, for one thing. Anyone with an ounce of sense about web design would immediately write off the outsized font, the links tossed at the bottom of the page like fast-food wrappers piled in the passenger compartment of a rusted-out hoopty. You can't possibly take such a blog seriously. You can pity the whackjob who manages to totter into the library long enough from their daily appointment with pissing in the street to create such a thing, and move on, pondering the meaning of crazy babbling online just as you might do if you hear it as you pass an alley downtown. It's kind of hard to take a bum seriously when they call you a fucking idiot, especially since they could very well just be talking to the voices in their heads.

So, some would call seedyrum vs. Riehlworldview a blogging feud, I just call it sad, on the seedy one's part. The only thing Dan Riehl can do that makes sense is ignore it. And maybe make sure he has a burglar alarm installed and carries a piece at all times.

What about you, Loki? I mean, dis here blog be all 'bout fuckin' wit peepz.

I done told you I was crazy, aight?