We Need To Talk About The Past


No joke, folks. Here we go again...


Hello there; name’s Clark. I said I’d be back. Honestly, I didn’t expect it to be so soon. Back in January, when I gave what was effectively a eulogy for the old Disgruntled Individual, I had said that I would return when I felt I had something to say, and knew how I wanted to say it. That, for a long while, I’d been feeling washed out, drawn thin. And that I was stepping away. Many of you reached out and expressed your feelings about this dank, hobbled little corner of the internet, and those comments meant the world to me. They put a fire under me. They turned me from a man walking away into a man walking towards. My brain lit up. No sooner had I released myself from obligation then the ideas blossomed, and I was itching to come back. But I couldn’t. Not yet.

The Disgruntled Individual was meant to be the place where I honed myself. To analyze, contribute and express opinion, and by virtue of that, be either 1) a better writer, B) more balanced or iii) at least give me a place to vent. Very quickly though, through no fault but my own hubris, it became an imitation of the feed sites that regurgitate the same five pieces of news every day (and each with as much analysis as a casting announcement or a trailer’s teaser trailer can generate). And they all have the staying power of however long it takes for that story to slip off the home page. I didn’t want that. I don’t want that. I want to generate something slightly more substantive. Something with, hopefully, a little more staying power. To get back to the point of things.

And to do that, there needed to be changes, philosophical and physical. The first thing that happened is I lost the “Prepare to Lower Your Expectations” tag line under the title. As much as that was meant to be a “Abandon all Hope” style message for readers, warning them of the cultural quagmire against which I rail, it instead became a self-fulfilling prophecy. I’d start out with lofty goals, and would be brought low by a deepening feeling of pointlessness. So yeah, got rid of that. In its place, the mandate of this site is now “The Science of Culture.” Because that’s what is happening here: a cogent, focused, analysis of raw data. A scrutiny of the continuing experiments that are the creative contributions of the modern culture, how that compares with what has been, and a reasonable expectation of what is to come, or what should come.

To pull that off, we needed to put on the fancy pants. So, welcome to the New and Improved Disgruntled Individual. The redesign went wonderfully, I feel. We have a new logo, and everything! It is still a work in process; I know a few things I still need to tweak, and if you notice anything buggy or not working right, please let me know. I do want to point a couple things out specifically. First off, we are now using a responsive framework, which means for the first time, we are accessible on mobile devices in a way that doesn’t look like utter pig-shite (I believe the previous template I used was indeed known as “utter pig-shite”). And second, we now have a Social Media Presence. That’s right, Disgruntled Individual 2.0 intends to be considerably more interactive (and I'm going to draw a lot of attention to the intends part of that sentence). So, up top and down below, we have a Facebook page for you to Like, we have a Twitter feed for you to Follow, we have a Google+ account for you to… Add? There's a YouTube account that won’t likely have anything on it anytime soon, but hey, you never know. And the ol’ standard email and RSS feeds. Feel free to ask me anything through any of those services, and a response will be forth with and potentially as witty as it is informed (which is to say, dull and full of lies).

Up front and centre are the areas on which I will be concentrating: Review, Analysis and Opinion. No doubt there will be little bits of jetsam that slip through unattached to those distinctions, but the bulk of content will fall under those categories. Though Explanations and Suppositions, looking at evidence and either deducing truths, or making reasonable assumptions. And through Lists, Rants and Paracosms, voicing my entirely reasonable [citation needed] thoughts and perceptions. What falls where I expect to be fluid, but that should get us started. Changes may occur mid-flight, we’ll have to see what sort of turbulence comes our way. How and when articles will be published will rely entirely on when I feel like the product is worth reading and when it is relevant. No more set schedules. Ideas live in their own time. I'll be playing a bit of catch-up over the next little while, covering some things I've missed, and after that, things will get a little more random. Perhaps the most noticeable effect this will have is, individual episode reviews will pretty much be a thing of the past. Unless I am particularly struck by something that happens, the norm will be chunk reviews, covering whole seasons or groups of episodes. There may be exceptions to this: I wouldn’t trade my weekly Continuum or Hannibal reviews for anything. But more and more I’ve found that my criticism and adulation are as relevant on the macro scale as they are on the micro.

And finally, there is Something Else Entirely. Which will shortly be the official monthly podcast of The Disgruntled Individual. The content is up in the air right now, but I’m hoping to make audience participation a big part of it. So all those social media sites I mentioned above: tell me what you want me to talk about. Ask me questions, I’ll answer. Ask me anything. I used to make my living answering every and any random question that crossed my desk, and I’d be pleased as rum punch to do so again. What are gravity waves?; Who would win in a fight, a super intelligent bear, or Batman in a neck brace?; why can’t I get no tang around this place? All perfectly valid questions that have answers, I assume. Everything else will fall into place, I’m sure. Hey, it’s worth the experiment, ain’t it? And you aren’t paying for it, so don’t complain.

So that’s it. Welcome back. And to all those hobos still using us to hide all that Korean pornography you’re browsing on public library terminals, we still don’t approve of what you are going to yourself in full view, but we’re happy to provide you some Grade-B duds to cover up with.
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About MR. Clark

Adopting the descriptor of "successfully unpublished author", MR. Clark began writing things on the internet in 2012, which he believed to be an entirely reputable and civilized place to find and deliver information. He regrets much.

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