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5:09 a.m. - 2003-01-15

WHAT DO YOU GIVE ON THE THIRD ANNIVERSARY ... STYROFOAM?

You know...there are a lot of anniversaries that are special. The first anniversary...sure. That's a given.

The tenth? Oh yeah...real special.

Twenty-fifth? Yep. That's where the kids throw a big party for you and you start to coast in the relationship.

But the third anniversary?

That's the most special of all.

That said...today's my third anniversary with Diaryland. That's 21 dog years. If this diary was a dog, she'd be able to buy beer now.

Yes...three years ago today, I signed up on this site that had maybe ... I dunno ... something like 200 diaries at the time.

My first diary entry wasn't really a diary entry at all. It was my column for that week's paper and I posted it here, just to see how the concept worked and how it would look.

It was the next day that I wrote my actual first entry specifically for Diaryland.

For those of you too lazy to go look for it, I'll reprint it here...


I don't belong here.

The name should have been a tip off. "Diaryland". I mean...it has 12-year-old girl written all over it.

The cutesy flowers and kittens .... shoulda been a dead giveaway.

"Go away old man. This site isn't for you."

Tough. I LIKE it.

And,luckily for everyone involved, we live in a free society (unless you're in Canada...those Nazi bastards...)where we can say and do as we please.

So if I am a man in his mid-30s that wants to stick his diary amongst the teens here ... then I can do it.

And I'm doing it.

And you can't stop me.

Anyway ... here I am. I don't know what the hell I'm doing here, or how long I'll stay. But it's fun for now.

ME


People ask me all the time, they say "Uncle Bob ... what the hell are you doing here?"

And I say to them "Hey look ... there's no law that says you can't break into someone's house to sniff their laundry."

Then they say "No...go ahead and keep sniffing the panties. What I meant was ... what are you doing in Diaryland?"

And I say "Oh" as I casually stuff the panties in my coat pocket for further sniffing later on. "Well that's a long story, my friend. Have a seat and I'll tell you all about it."

It was my former evil boss Wendigo that introduced me to Diaryland. She sent me an email one day that told me about the site and how addictive it was to read about total strangers' lives.

I read a few diaries and thought "Maybe I should try this."

But at the time, I had a site on Geocities that I updated every day that was getting about 20 hits a day. And believe me...when you're getting 20 hits a day...there's NO WAY you're going to give up that site.

So I decided to make my Diaryland site a kind of accompanying site that would lead people to my REAL site.

Ingenious, wouldn't you say?

So if you go back and look at my entries from January 2000, you see at the bottom of each entry, my gallant attempts to tease people into going to see the real site.

However, it didn't work. The hits at the other site stayed at 20 a day. And truth be told...about 15 of those were from me, constantly checking my guest book to see if ANYONE had signed it.

But the Diaryland site started becoming more of a home to me. The first person that emailed me was Anenigma. She sent me words of encouragement and said she enjoyed my diary.

It was lust at first email for me. She was my first fan!! I smoothed my hair down, straightened my shirt and wrote her back. I've saved that email for the last three years and will share it with you all in a public forum for the first time.


----- Original Message -----

From: "Uncle Bob"

To: "Anenigma"

Sent: Friday, January 16, 2000 11:28 PM

Subject: Re: Good Job! (1-15-00)

Get a life, bitch.

It's only a fucking diary.

Sincerely,

Uncle Bob


Keep in mind, I was still drinking and doping heavily when I first started writing this thing.


Speaking of which ... let's check in with how my life has changed since I started this diary.

In 2000, the diarist that everyone aspired to be was DirtyGirl. She was a fantastic writer and is sorely missed.

...In 2003, the diarist that everyone aspires to be is me. Me. Do you hear me ... YOU WANT TO BE ME!!!! At least, that's how it goes in my egotistical, arrogant mind.

In 2000, I smoked copious amounts of marijuana before each diary entry, and would do at least two entries a day, sometimes three.

...In 2003, I haven't had any pot since the summer of 2000. At times that sucks, but at least it doesn't smell like the car that Cheech and Chong used to drive to Woodstock in my office anymore.

In 2000, I didn't have a child and had no hopes of ever having a child.

...In 2003, Andrew is now 2 years old and is the true love of my life. Susie? Eh. She's good for sex every now and then.

In 2000, Bill Clinton was president and we were all still exhaling and thrilled that we had made it through Y2K unscathed.

...In 2003, we've got an illiterate cowboy as president who's about to get us involved in our 2nd and 3rd wars since he took office.

In 2000, I wasn't even sure there was a God.

...In 2003, I'm a church deacon and an evangelist.

In 2000, I was the managing editor/columnist for a local newspaper, working for a miserable alcoholic.

...In 2003, I'm writing coffee table books for cities around the country, working for someone who doesn't know my name.

In 2000, I was living in an old home in a rapidly-growing ghetto section of town.

...In 2003, we're living in a brand new home that we built last summer in an upper middle-class neighborhood and trying desperately to pay the mortgage each month while continuing to hold onto the facade that we belong here.

In 2000, I was a healthy drug addict.

...In 2003, I'm drug free but have obstructive sleep apnea and diabetes. And they say marijuana shouldn't be legalized...tsk tsk.

In 2000, the worst thing I could find in my life to rag on was my wife's choice of cars...a '76 Chevy Impala.

...In 2003, I have developed the uncanny ability to rag on nearly anything and everything that I cross.

In 2000, Uncle Bob was just an alter ego of mine with a diary.

...In 2003, Uncle Bob has been slyly referenced in an NBC prime-time television show which led to a mention in the New York Times. Granted, neither mention is particularly memorable to the average Joe...but they both made my day.


Finally ... and I know this sounds hokier than an acceptance speech at an awards show ... but I wouldn't be here without you guys.

I've received constant encouragement from hundreds of you over the years. If it wasn't for that, I doubt I'd still be doing this. Several times over the last three years, I've wanted to quit getting up before dawn to write a bunch of silly crap that was just hogging up some bandwidth.

But you guys kept emailing me and leaving me messages and telling me that you enjoyed it.

And Diaryland has truly become a loving community with over a million diaries in its walls with hundreds of thousands of great people here.

(Speaking of which...if some of you great people could spread the word and check out Damodred's Diary, it would be most appreciated. Damodred is a fine woman with some serious health problems that she explains here. I know that if there's enough of you out there who would send a combined $600 to a guy who needed some cash for a tank of gas, you can surely help Damodred out as well.)

I thought when Andrew was born, I'd want to quit writing this and get up before dawn with him each day.

Luckily, Andrew sleeps as long as he possibly can and has no intentions of getting up before dawn to hang out with his Pop.

I'm sure I'll do this for at least another year.

Only because I re-upped my gold membership and firmly believe I always need to get the most for my money.

So thanks to all of you who read this piece of crap page and have sent me emails and notes and messages to let me know that you've enjoyed it at least once.

I dig ya.

Now then...it's time to get ready for year four.

Get the fuck outta my way.

I've got work to do.

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