First Draft Fundraising Drive: Origins


Shirtless Hugh Jackman. Whatever I have to do to make youhit that tip jar this week, I’mma do.

So seven years ago the world was insane, seemingly nobody wanted to talk about how the president was maybe even slightly not doing his job well, and I was addicted to the crazy fun the Howard Dean blog was having. I was so starved, I think, for passionate discussion about politics and I started poking around their links, which led to the Crack Den. I lurked in the comments there for a long time unti something (a post about gay marriage, maybe?) inspired me to comment, and unlike almost every other area of my life where people were telling me to shut up, those people wanted to talk!

They wanted to talk all night. They wanted to argue. They wanted to learn. They exchanged information and debated its veracity and encouraged each other and trolled each other a little bit, too. They weren’t shy about schooling me when I said something stupid. I hadn’t fallen this hard in love since college.

When Atrios asked me to guestblog I figured they’d run me off in ten minutes. Instead Holden and Tena and pie and I ended up having this weeklong party that we didn’t want to end, so when the boss came back from vacation we piled over here. As did lots of other people, to our immense satisfaction. The server crashed on a weekly basis. We went through three different hosts. Tena and I got drunk in separate cities and watched presidential debates. John Kerry lost the election and things really went to shit for America. Katrina hit and the earth caved in. Holden left, Tena left, Scout came on board, then Jude, then Adrastos, now all our weekly posters, and sometimes I still can’t believe we’re still going.

Seven years of crack vans, caption contests, ferretblogging, cat pics, chinchilla jokes, ponies, late-night phone calls/texts/e-mails about stuff we should be covering, Galactica threads, videos, projects to create better journalists, rescue pelicans, give people warm coats, send care packages to Afghanistan, original reporting, writing writing writing a thousand words a day, writing about stuff that matters, doing what we’ve always done as people: Telling stories. Sharing stories: Hey, have you guys seen this? What do you think about that? We do this on the Interwebs but this is a very old thing we’re doing, make no mistake.

This community and what it represents has helped me get all the work I’ve gotten offline in the past seven years. It has made some wonderful friends, made me a better writer, made me tougher online and off, less willing to take crap from people, less willing to back down from what I want. I hope we’ve done the same for you out there reading. I hope we’ve made you think, made you laugh, fired you up, made you care, because that’s what we’re here for. That’s why we talk to each other. That’s why we tell stories, so that at the end of them we’re a little more connected, a little less alone.

I want keep doing this as long as you’re here reading it. Thank you to everybody who’s donated so far.


4 thoughts on “First Draft Fundraising Drive: Origins

  1. Virgotex..she has to cross polinate her market…DAMN I should have played it out, this is getting vedy vedy interesting.

  2. You write so well that, some days, it takes my breath away. You’re only going to get better.

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