Haters, take two.
As I’ve stated before, I’m on myspace all the time answering emails and reading people’s retarded profiles. Well, the other day I was sitting around making phone calls and answering emails, when I came across an email from a kid on myspace that has emailed me in the past being a dick. The email said, “I hate you… You’re not funny.” I decided to engage him in a childish war of insults, and then I posted it all on my blog.
You can read it here.
Now, I posted it because I thought some people would find it amusing, and because I hadn’t written anything in my blog for a while, but it wound up being posted on several different sites on the net and stirring up quite a little bit of controversy. I’ve explained myself to 20 or 30 different people that emailed me pissed at me, so I decided to address it all here in an attempt to clear the air, save time, and avoid carpal tunnel.
Now, I get hate mail all the time, and usually if I respond at all, I try to just explain myself or my opinions on whatever they’re pissed at me about, and it very rarely turns into something as ridiculous as what that little exchange turned out to be.
I know a lot of people have some sort of ideas about how people in the public eye are supposed to respond to people that are not, but the way I look at it is this: I’m just a person, and when another person acts like an asshole to me, I reserve the right to be an asshole right back. I’m not defending my actions, but I am explaining how I think about it, or at least thought about it at the time. People say, “You’re the asshole picking on some 20 year old college student.” To which I say, absolutely. That was what I was going for. He was insulting me, so I decided to insult him right back. I was most certainly being an asshole, but I was being one to someone that was insulting me. If someone is nice to me I go out of my way to be nice to him or her, but if you’re going to be a dick, I reserve the right to be a dick right back.
The bottom line is that anyone that would email someone that they don’t know, and tell them something to try to piss them off or hurt their feelings is being a fuck head.
If you don’t like me, like I’ve said, that’s fine and dandy with me, but only an asshole goes around insulting people for no reason.
The internet has created a way for people to be screened and protected from the consequences of being shitty to other people.
Before the internet, this gateway was only available to writers and critics, but now, everyone can say whatever they want to say to someone with no consequences, especially if that person makes themselves as accessible as I am.
If there were no written word and no method of long distance communication, we would be forced to say the things we think about people to their face, which is the way humans are designed to communicate.
Now, when you remove the social cues you get from two people standing in front of each other talking face to face, it’s a whole lot easier to be an asshole.
Could you imagine if you were just going about your day, and someone you don’t know walked up to you and said “I hate you, you’re not funny?” Because that’s exactly the same thing someone is doing by sending that in an email.
How can you defend that behavior?
“Well, as a person in the public eye, you’ve got to expect that.”
As a person that thinks that a good percentage of the people on this planet suck, I do expect it. It doesn’t mean that I have to be nice to them. I wanted him to feel exactly the way he was trying to get me to feel.
“Ooh, big man! You’ve got to go around telling people that they’re fat.”
I made fun of his physical appearance because he made fun of mine, saying “enjoy balding.” (which I have to admit, was actually pretty funny and made me laugh.)
Again, you poke me, I poke you back. Glass houses, rocks… you know the deal.
I’m the first person to tell you I look goofy.
I totally look like a meat head, and if I didn’t know me or know anything about me, I would probably assume that I’m an asshole.
I’m short, (5’8”) and not only am I going bald, but I’ve had hair transplants, so if I ever decide to shave my head, I’ve got a big, retarded scar back there for people to laugh at.
So we’ve all got shit about us to make fun of. It’s not like I hate fat people or anything.
One of my best friends in the world, Joey Diaz, is obesity incarnate.
“You’re such a fucking loser, you think that making money and being on some dumb show is any real accomplishment?”
Well, when you’re bickering back and forth like this, basically you’re playing a very low level social game. You’re trying to “win.”
When someone insinuates that you’ve never accomplished anything, and you just happen to be a guy that’s made some money and been on some tv shows, wouldn’t you bring that up?
You’re not supposed to say that? Why not? It’s just a fact. Why can’t you state a fact? What kind of a weird taboo is that? It’s bragging?
Why? Just because that fact doesn’t apply to your life and it makes you uncomfortable?
Because it sounds gross when people talk about how much money that they make?
I think in the context that it was said, it was reasonable to bring that up.
I’m not saying I’m a better person than anyone that hasn’t done what I’ve done, but when someone is saying that I’m going to work for the family hardware store because my career is over, I think I’m allowed to say “let’s compare lives.”
It’s not like I’m having a serious conversation with someone whose opinion I respect, and when the subject of “have you accomplished anything in your life” comes up.
No, it’s a shit-talking contest between two jackasses that have never even fucking met each other.
If I were seriously going to be honest about what I think my accomplishments are, it would be a far different answer. To anyone that knows me it’s very clear that I don’t really think hosting fear factor is any great accomplishment. It was certainly a lucky break, but it’s not like it’s a difficult task for me, or something that I’m proud of.
The only difficult thing about it at all is the fact that it gets a little boring sometimes.
The people that do all the hard work are really the people behind the camera and in production.
My biggest accomplishment personally, has been to be able to make a living without having to work a “real job,” and my stand up. And even with the stand up, the weirdest part about it, is the better I get at it, the less I feel responsible for what I’m writing and saying. It’s the oddest fucking thing. When I’m onstage and I’m at my best, it’s more like I’m an observer to what’s happening than the guy who’s actually doing it.
I love the feeling it gives me when people laugh and they enjoy the show, but it’s not like I get offstage after I kill thinking “I’m the shit!” I just feel happy, and a little weirded out.
When I lay alone in my hotel room bed after the show and I think about what happened all I ever think of is “how can I improve this.” That, and occasionally I’ll just trip out on the fact that I can do it at all.
Same thing with writing, the better you get at it, the less it feeds the ego.
So I don’t even really think my stand up is as much of an accomplishment as it is a pursuit with no end. Other people can enjoy a CD or a DVD that I make, and I think that’s great, but for some reason even if I think it’s really good I never really feel “proud” of it. I like it when people enjoy it, and I’m glad it makes them laugh, but really it’s just a captured moment of this living art form that’s constantly changing and growing. I’m somehow attached to it, and by embracing it and cultivating it, I get to enjoy its benefits.
I love it, but I wouldn’t really call it an accomplishment.
Those are my honest thoughts on my “accomplishments” but obviously that’s not exactly something you can effectively say to someone that hates you that you’re having an insult war with.
It does however honestly represent my real feelings on things.
This whole thing has been very interesting for me to watch unfold. It’s interesting to watch the comments in the blogs go in waves, people defending me, people saying I suck, picking sides and going back and forth.
What’s really odd, is that some people have internalized this little feud, and are writing me saying things to me as if I was having that conversation with them.
It’s fucking weird.
As for Kevin, the kid that wrote the email that started all this, at the end of all this he emailed me saying that he would apologize, but that he knows I enjoyed it, and that if he saw me on the street, he would walk up to me, introduce himself and offer to shake my hand. I said that if he did that, I would gladly shake it, and that I hope he learned something from this little exchange.
I know I did.