Critical Miami and Klotz As In Blood Are the Top Contenders
Many crocodile tears have been shed over the death of Stuck on the Palmetto by South Florida blogs that depended on its blogroll for their survival. I say "crocodile tears" because all these blogs, small and smaller, while benefitting from SotP's seal of approval also despised it cordially as all industry leaders are despised. What was it exactly that SotP was a purveyor of and how could one or more of these vestigial blogs replace it? That is the question which many pretenders to Rick's mantle have been asking themselves. If you ask me, I think there is an heir apparent to SotP already. Which is? Critical Miami, of course. It's a little too highbrow (though not insufferably so) and much too conventional, and Alesh's legendary adversion to a local blogroll is an impediment to Critical Miami's ascendency, since many regard him unfavorably because of it. In fact, chief among Alesh's critics in this respect was Rick, who chided him many times for the blog equivalent of stinginess. It is a poor emperor who has no dependencies and Alesh's reluctance to give his imprimatur to any other blog is the only thing which is holding him back and which may prove an insurmountable obstacle to his aspirations (supposing he has them).
The only other South Florida blog of its stature, which sparkles at times in ways that the genial but rather staid Critical Miami rarely does, is Klotz as In Blood. He is by far the best writer among the South Florida bloggers: wit, irony, sarcasm, those precious condiments of good writing which others avoid or use indiscriminately, Steve knows how to balance to create quite a smorgasbord. But he too has his limitations. He is not prolific and he is too much of a wordsmith to be. His blog is not easily identifiable as a South Florida blog since it has no distinctive Florida marker in its name (e.g. "Palmetto, "Miami"). Although he writes often about South Florida, he would have to write a great deal more about it to don SotP's mantle as leader of the local blog consortium.
For my part, I should be pleased with either Steve or Alesh. Both are decent and honorable human beings with no hate except for purveyors of hate. In this they differ markedly from and are a great improvement over Rick, who hated many and sundry, especially Cuban-Americans, and used that hate to expand his readership. I do not suggest copying his formula of seeding hatred among ethnic groups, either. Racism is a disease of the mind, not an eccentricity; and I believe that Rick succeeded despite and not because of it. But, again, there is no chance that either Steve or Alesh would follow that course. By virtue of that fact, they won't require a second banana from a maligned group as a token. In fairness, Alex was more than just a token; often he pulled Rick from the brink of his own unfanthomable ignorance. Why he would consent to be Rick's waterboy when he is in every way his superior, I will never know. Although neither Rick nor Alesh need a partner, they should nevertheless consider acquiring one. I can think of no better blogging partner for Alesh than Steve and vice versa. They balance each other perfectly. The success that they would achieve together would be far greater than what each could attain individually. Both have at least some respect for my opinion, and if they were content to follow my advice, they could exceed by far SotP's ephemeral success.
But what if neither desires to succeed the late SotP as doyenne of the local South Florida blogs. Well, there is a formula which any local blog can follow to achieve SotP's rapid rise and avoid crashing as it did. Ephemeral success, ultimately, is not success: it is a fluke. My formula also contains the seeds of permanence. I should really sell it to the highest bidder, but to avoid another Rick — that is, to avoid creating a monster — I prefer to pass on the formula to all the local blogs and let them compete on an equal footing. There may be an element or two which I have missed that one of them can supply which might prove the determining factor. I will present this formula in a future post, as I wish to give Alesh or Steve the chance to seize the moment.
Here’s the formula:
Google News is your best friend. Search South Florida and every major city there. Also, Digg’s Offbeat News. Copy and paste liberally. Add a sentence or two of your own. Be sarcastic and offensive if possible. There you have your typical SotP post.
Do an occasional introspective piece about yourself. These can be dashed off quicker than the news posts.
Pick a group — not blacks or gays — and make it the object of your special ire. Attack them often and ignorantly. Hope that they will attack you too.
Be rude and smarmish with your commenters. The post itself is insignificant; it’s the give and take of the thread that will get you the stats.
Hope and pray for someone like me who can carry a thread forever and do other yeoman service for you. And don't forget to ungrateful.