“I don’t mean to sound bitter, cold or cruel, but I am, so that’s how it comes out.”— Bill Hicks
My mother thinks I’m a good writer. For the past several years since I acquired this position, she has called or e-mailed me right after receiving the new issue of The Yellow Scene and exclaimed how “funny” and “creative” I am. Too bad the rest of you don’t know me as my mother does.
From those outside of my immediate family, my articles have garnered plenty of complaint letters. Often times, these moaning missives have come complete with a threat of boycotting advertisers, mass magazine burnings and/or calling of a state senator. I don’t take these threats lightly, but they do make me laugh. After all, the complainers are the first ones to pick the magazine up each month to see what I’ve given them to bellyache about.
When my article, “How to Kill a Lobster” hit the streets earlier this year, the letters poured in. One of them, my mother noted, was from a writing “heavyweight” with a bio that she described as “rather impressive.” My mother’s concern is that I am getting in over my head linguistically. You can understand her apprehension in my picking “lexiconical” fights with the general populace, considering that I have half a decade of college experience with no diploma to adorn my desk.
That’s because I’ve never been the type to put in a lot of work, grinding my fingers to the bone, excitedly awaiting the pay out. You will never see me furiously pedaling up Flagstaff hill, anticipating the reward of joyously and effortlessly coasting back down. I generally choose the flatter, unwavering path. With my Zen nature, I guess you won’t find me sitting in class, studiously taking notes, either.
My point being, my writing credentials would never be described as “heavyweight.” My lack of formal training has never stopped me from running my mouth, though, all the while entertaining the notion that I’m an agent of change.
Things are really moving at The Yellow Scene now. As is natural with growth and streamlining, old practices often need to be revamped, and, I’m sorry to say, freelance writers with no “heavyweight credentials” who constantly turn articles in late, fail to invoice in a timely manner, refuse to answer phone calls or e-mails and, all the while, really only spit out drivel, might find themselves in need of an upgrade. It seems this agent of change has proven to be too unwilling to grow.
So to all of you learned, intellectually-minded letter-writers who’ve written in complaints in regards to The Wrecking Ball, I thank you all. When my editor finds your grumbles to be at all witty and/or thought-provoking, you, too, just as this college drop-out, might find your writing in the pages of this magazine.
If not, don’t fret. Hell, it’s not like you’ve been getting paid to be creative and witty.
Embrace the change; enjoy the ride.
The Yellow Scene has enjoyed the ride, too. We thank Brian Ball for his years of service. And this may not be the end for The Wrecking Ball—Brian has an open door to return, if he meets deadlines.