Sunday, July 27, 2008

An Open Letter to Sweet Juniper!

Dear author and father of Sweet Juniper!,

I think that I may have offended you this past week. I was spreading the word on an important blogging issue to which you had called my attention: plagiarism. In my post, I may have referred to you as a "yuppie" and implied that you are a gentrifying SNAG (sensitive new age guy). (The actual phrase I used to describe your blog was "white yuppie moves to Detroit to be a stay-at-home dad and take pictures of book warehouses", I believe.) Your response was simply "ouch." I regret my choice of words. For this, I am sorry.

You yourself had used the term "yuppie" as a reclaimed label. So, I figured it would be OK to call you "yuppie" as well, but I was wrong. I too could be considered a yuppie and shouldn't throw stones in my suburban, glass house. I actually respect you too much to really consider you a yuppie. The insights you share through your words and photography prove that you are no yuppie.

If I had heroes in the blogosphere, you would be one of them. When I announced that we were pregnant, a friend directed me to your blog. What I found was a smart and well-written story of the struggle to maintain one's sense of self while raising a family. Your blog gave me hope that I could raise my kid the way I wanted without changing who I am.

You then impressed me over and over. You took those beautiful pictures of the Detroit Public Schools book depository that encapsulated both the struggle of public schools and the deterioration of a great city. I cheered for you as you fought the negative influence gender held over your daughter. You made me think about my own future as a father as you described the daily struggles of raising a newborn and toddler while your partner returned to work.

Of course, you seem like a cool guy. I was super jealous when you described your time spent in Athens and regularly seeing indie rock legends, particularly Jeff Magnum. You live in the kind of city we yearn to inhabit: a Great Lakes-region, industrialized urban center. Oh, and you somehow have figured out a way to make your blog relevant. I mean, you get more comments a day than I get visitors.

Anyways, I apologize if I have offended you in any way. I am a big fan of Sweet Juniper! and plan to continue to support your blog. As I used to tell my fourth graders, one can only leave an apology on a person's doorstep. They don't have to accept it.

Good luck with the new kid, getting the old one to wear something besides her pink dress, and with your other ventures.



Sarah said...

Amazingly, I had never read Sweet Juniper! until your post the other day. (The "yuppie with warehouse pictures" description didn't scare me away from it.) I'm so glad you did mention it, because it's a beautifully written blog full of family and history and music and imagination...all the things in the world that make it a lovely, worthwhile place to be. The pictures are incredible. It's a rare blog that fills me with inspiration and happiness and a little bit of jealousy (and I didn't even read the part about Athens!), but Sweet Juniper managed just that...the power to make me say flaky things on the internet. So, thank you.
Oh, and your blog ain't too bad itself :)

KR said...

I probably owe an apology, too? I didn't mean to make fun of jdg's victimization.

And also, I had never read Sweet Juniper! prior to your post. I second Sarah's comment and sentiments about how nice of a blog it is. So thanks for educating your readership. Again.

jdg said...

no apologies necessary sir. after I saw that post and left the comment I took a look around your blog and realized I probably would like you a lot in real life.

sometimes it seems like we're not real people but we are and probably because I've let my ego get bolstered by all the blog sycophancy in our comments whenever I perceive a slight I am still sensitive. I am actually surprised more people don't openly hate me. so I appreciate your kind words and look forward to reading your site regularly.



comoprozac said...

Thanks all for the kind words. If I need an ego boost, all I have to do is post something on my blog (aside from a few critics).

jdg, I'm glad and super thrilled you like my stuff but more importantly that you accepted my apology. Maybe we'll cross paths in Detroit some day and see that we're both real. (We're there like once or twice a year.)

scotty said...


comoprozac said...

Thanks, Scotty. I was wondering if any of my critics would show.

Pizza Cottontail said...

I like happy endings. Kudos to all for handling the situation with maturity and civility.

In the spirit: Gil, if you're reading this, maybe we got off on the wrong foot. I'm sorry for whatever it was that we were mad at each other for, which I think had something to do with comma splices.

comoprozac said...