Thursday, January 06, 2005

NO BITTERNESS. I have been done the honor of a nomination in the 3rd Annual Koufax Awards. It is in the category of "Most Humorous Blog," which dooms me right off, as I consider the content of alicublog, like that of my life, to be tragicomic at best. None of the other honorees, so far as I am aware, are given to grim, thousand-word exegeses on the decline of our Republic. I am as likely to win this thing as David Neiwert is to be crowned "Last Comic Standing."

When last I checked, over a hundred ballots had been cast in this category and I had received no votes. This is as it should be. All the other nominees are hilarious. The ones I knew when I perused the list have always busted me up, and the ones to which the list introduced me are funnier than Al Gonzales solemnly promising to uphold the Geneva Conventions.

Besides, I am more comfortable with defeat than victory, not only by virtue of experience but of temperment. Even as a child I would refuse invitations to participate in Spelling Bees, always offering the same glum excuse: "So what if I can spell 'affidavit' and Henry Dreher can't -- he has a father!" As a teenager, I would preface all my romantic encounters by reenacting the final moments of Tea and Sympathy. Even now I sometimes impulsively decline change at the grocery store checkout counter, reasoning that I would only waste it on more food. Hence my Democratic registration, my frequent trips to Shea Stadium, and my tendency at the end of the final reel to re-adjust my bowler, twirl my cane, forlornly kick up my heels and waddle down the road as the camera irises out.

Nor am I unaware of the disappointment I have caused weary readers who, looking for a bit of levity in a terrible age and tipped to alicublog by some misguided or easily bribed web eminence, clicked over to find me raving about Social Security or the decline of melodrama, and doing reps on my vocabulary. My reputation for "snark" is based on all-too-brief flashes of mania brought on by alcohol or senile dementia. The late legalistic ramblings of Lenny Bruce were, compared to my work, Rodney Dangerfield on speed at his favorite nephew's Bar Mitzvah. I should be awarded a summons, not a Koufax, unless one has been created for "Most Abrupt Mood Swing," or "Post Most Closely Resembling an Arthur Bremer Diary Entry."

Besides, success would make me insufferable. As anyone who has seen The Oscar knows, once I caught even the merest whiff of the heady liquor in the cup of victory, my inner Stephen Boyd would be unleashed; I would alienate my few friends, start saying things like "Lie down with pigs -- get up smelling like gahbage!" and wind up brokenly, catatonically clapping as stock footage of Frank Sinatra accepted the prize in my stead.

Do me, yourself, and posterity a favor and do not vote for alicublog at the Koufaxes. Do visit Wampum, and check out the nominees you haven't previously read. The Justice Department already has, and you can't afford to know less than they do.

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