During an idle moment recently, I trolled over to Epicurious to look for bright ideas for what to do about our kale glut. I was alarmed to see that the good folks there now have a blog for the editor, drolly titled Epi-log. Cod has been making sport of Epicurious since back in the hatchery, and I shuddered to think what might unfold. Surprise--in the week or so that I've been following, it has been interesting in a good way. In the archives, there is more rote recycling of the PR stuff she gets, but now the editor appears to be beginning to have some fun with the possibilities afforded her by a constant barrage of press releases:
We now know where much of California taxpayers' hard-earned money (and not so hard-earned if you take into account the movie industry) is going: the state's food agencies. The raisin board spent millions on dancing raisins (remember all those years of commercials?). We have grown used to the constant invitations from the California Avocado Commission to go on some junket that has little to do with our favorite green fruit (and no, we don't take them up on it). And now the California Asparagus Commission has sent us not one, not two, not three, but four CDs in the span of two days with everything you want to know about the skinny stalk. We are using them as coasters.
OK, not "From the Mailroom" in the Golden age of Spy, but it's somehow comforting to know that the Asparagus Commission is like some creepy erstwhile indie rock boyfriend deulging you with mix CDs and offering to loan you his dub of Superstar. And they broke the Bourdain Rhapsody playlist story.
That said, it is still blogging for the Man. Blogging for the Man appears to be all the rage these days, and it
seems that it requires a clarification of just what a blog is. The
whole point, I think, is that the stuff you put up is precisely not
what you are paid to do. If T-Muffle worked for a government agency that was
charged with mocking the pretensions of New Yorkers, TMF/TML would make
no sense. Similarly, if Martin Luther were alive today, he would not
have 95theses.blogspot.com, but perhaps a blog about raising rabbits for food.
I propose a name for the likes of Pour, Epi-log, and Diner's Journal-- the "clog," or corporate blog. If you write stuff to put on the Internet that is part of your job, that's a fundamentally different proposition than stealing time from your job to write stuff you actually care about.