Eight Years of Whatever

Thanks to the pointless insanity that was Bacon Catenter the phrase “Bacon Cat” into Google, incidentally, and see where you go — I completely forgot to note that September 13 was the eight-year-anniversary of the Whatever. Yes, eight years ago last Wednesday I posted my first Whatever entry, blabbing about how I was doing this to keep sharp for the newspaper column I hoped someone would give me one day (I had had one before, you see). To date, no one’s given me that newspaper column, damn the luck, but then again I doubt any sane newspaper editor would have let me run a column that was entirely about taping bacon to my cat, so you tell me if this is a bad thing. And the rest of my writing life seems to be going okay. I’ll survive.

(Bacon Cat addendum: Apparently the #2 blog post on the Web yesterday. Insanity.)

That said, I think it’s some nice synchronicity that my highest-traffic day here was on the anniversary of my starting this thing going. It’s coincidence, but it’s a nice coincidence. It’s also nice that the last several days have been just about perfectly representative of the “whatever” ethos of the site — from the wife brushing back a drunk to book talk to politics to blogging issues to just plain idiotic silliness, we’ve pretty much hit it all. I think that’s what makes the Whatever work, personally. Most of the other blogs with the Whatever’s level of readership or above tend to be single-issue blogs (generally politics or tech), so it’s nice to do things a little bit differently than the rest of them. As I’ve noted before, it pays off in me not being bored, and also in bringing in a diverse crowd of readers and commenters. Other sites may have more visitors, but I wonder if any of them the range of visitors. There’s no way to know for sure, so I’m just going to say they don’t. Hah! Prove me wrong!

I’ll stop before I delve any further into pointless self-congratulating twaddle, but I do want to make sure I thank you all for swinging by. Maybe it’s the fact that I’m geographically isolated in a small rural community and spend most of my day in a single room typing ceaselessly into a glowy box talking, but I’m glad you come by and comment, and check to see what damn fool thing I’m writing about today. It really is appreciated.

Onward into year nine, then.

26 Comments on “Eight Years of Whatever”

  1. Congrats and Happy Blogday, John. The Whatever is a lot of fun to read, and a good place to hang out. Keep up the good work.


  2. John, Dave Edelman introduced us at Worldcon; we were sitting at the Hilton Lobby Starbucks. I’ve been reading for a while but thought I would delurk to wish the Whatever a happy Blogday, and to mention why I like this blog.

    I grew up in a small town. This blog reminds me of the neighbor’s front porch – the entertaining neighbor, not the other one who never comes out of his house and whose grass is never mowed and whose back yard is full of heaps of rusted car parts.

    Anyone might wander by and pause to chat, and the conversation ranges from the trivial to the serious. You’ve really captured the feel of that style of neighborliness.

  3. Happy anniversary. I’m trying to think of something witty to add, but can’t think of anything.

    Oh. I did read Old Man’s War this week. Since I’ve never had an opportunity to thank a writer for a good read before: thank you for a good read.

    Anyway, happy blogday.

  4. Congratulations!

    I’ve been reading here since Falwell outed Tinky Winky in 1999 (and you responded by outing the New Zoo Review and the Hamburgler, as well). ::nostalgic sigh::

  5. Zounds! Eight years?!?

    Congratulations, John. You’ve got quite the fun place here. I agree with Kate Elliott in that this is a lot like a comfy porch with all sorts of fun and (mostly) friendly conversations.

  6. How could you have a blog for eight years without me knowing about it? I love your writing style! Though there have been more than one forum administrators who weren’t so enthusiastic…

  7. My readership of the Whatever outlived my first marriage,, two of the three homes I have owned, half my time in college, three jobs, twelve friendships, and the entire contents of my spice cabinet. It is older then my son, the two cats I gave up for his asthma, the last used car I will ever own, and the computer I am using to type this. I would say it has outlasted my smoking habit but I recently began dabbling again in the tarry slow-death trade.

    So anyways, Congratulations Whatever, you have been the long-suffering center of my life for the last eight years. I’ll outlive you yet…*cough, cough* (smoke another).

  8. I have told a few people about this blog. The usual description I give is that it is very strange, very fun, and more interesting than most people’s novels.
    Too bad I didn’t find it 7 years sooner. Think of all the insanity I missed.

  9. Hi John,


    Right after I read OMW, I commented to my husband that I was very pleased to learn you were a young man, so that I could continue to enjoy your work for many years to come, transportation accidents notwithstanding. His response was to say he was glad my well-wishes for your continued good health did not have selfish motivations. Hmph.

    So, one of the reasons I like this site is because you selfishly refuse to devote every waking hour of your life to writing sci-fi. I have to get my “fix” somewhere, and since I don’t think the Heinlein society is liable to find anymore unpublished works, you’re it.

    Keep up the good work – can’t wait for TLC!

  10. Yaya! I love the Whatev’!!! Just came in after I read OMW. Wish I’d met your blog before. one of my favorite places one the web.

    Long live the Whatev’! Here’s to more bacony-cat goodness!!!

  11. Congrats, John.

    The first Whatever post I read was “John Scalzi Hates Your Politics.” Google tells me that was March of 2002, but it certainly seems like I’ve been reading for longer than that.

    Was that a reprint, or do I really have four years of back-Whatever columns to catch up on?

  12. Nope; that was it. However, those four years (3 1/2, really) are no longer currently on the site, so you can be forgiven for not having read them.

  13. Happy Blogday, indeed! May the next eight years be as good to you. You’re not the only one kept from being bored. *throws confetti*

  14. Congratulations on year 8! I was pretty happy to post daily for one year last May (except for that little Katrina vacation) on my photo blog. I hope I’m still going after eight years.

%d bloggers like this: