Friday, May 16, 2008

Go shorty, it's your birthday

There’s a piecing noise bouncing from the walls and it sounds somewhat like an alarm clock. The eyes thrust open and focus on a collection of cobwebs lying dormant in a previously obscure corner. You briefly ponder why the alarm clock is ringing on a Saturday, before throwing your feet to the floor and suddenly realizing your bad knee is acting up.

Pain courses through the temples, and darkness briefly encroaches on the peripheral vision. Get to the bathroom, stat; find some painkillers. The alarm is still ringing, but it’s taken a back seat to procuring some elixir in pill form. You grab a handful and start crunching, when you realize it’s not the faulty joint that’s acting up.

Instead, it’s the after effects of drinking the better part of a cheap wine flagon. You remember this around the same time you’re posterior crashes onto the floor after tripping over the aforementioned flagon, which lies amid a bizarre scattering of candles and literature; a worn copy of the Dubliners, an unkempt pile of newspapers, and the LL Bean catalogue curiously opened to the plus-sized swimsuit page.

Joe Bruno’s name is circled on one of the newspaper pages and a model displaying the ‘Tankini’ cut suit is labeled Marcia White. What does it all mean?

Then it dawns on you; a late night conversation, addled on Chianti and musing about the Senate Majority leader’s coddling of the Saratoga Performing Art Center’s director; it’s all making sense in some twisted way. The alarm is still ringing, but really it’s just a calamitous hammering from the construction outside. That’s strange, you think. They don’t do construction on Saturdays.

So it’s Friday, you have a crippling hangover and you’re three hours late for work. But you also have this desire to pontification about the sordid affair between an aging senator and his former press secretary. You head to the computer terminal, but the words aren’t flowing from your fingers. You try to think of something catchy or something humorous, but can only think of a movie scene where Danny Glover is sitting on a toilet bowel wired to a weight-sensitive bomb:

“I’m too old for this shit.”

Indeed, and getting older by the minute. Friday marked the dawning of the terrible twos for iSaratoga. Though the site has changed ever so slightly, the essential gist is the same. It’s just two years older. With that said, there is certainly more traffic than during the inaugural years. In about 18 months, there have been roughly 71,000 web crawlers who have skulked onto this blog for one reason or another.

Prior to 2007, the main draw for readers seemed to be a picture of high-grade marijuana posted here during the previous year. But in late January 2007, a posting about former News 9 anchor Kristina Krawchuk put iSaratoga on the media map. Several months later, iSaratoga became a battle ground during the mayoral campaign and the rest is history. During this time, this author has been accused of just about everything under the sun –‘a green-sneaker’ trying to forward fruitless environmental pursuits to a pro-development Republican shill.

Postings have slowed down a bit since the early days and the traffic has leveled off since the tumultuous election. All told, iSaratoga has about 150 daily readers who faithfully log on and mill about the various threads. On a daily basis, the site routinely gets about 400 hits. But a good contingent of these hits are from the aforementioned stoners trying to get a glimpse of the bubonic chronic, maybe thinking if they print the picture out and smoke it, they might get high.

Even with this modest number of hits, iSaratoga has gotten its fair share of shout-outs at Albany’s Times Union’s Web site, Skidmore Professor Bob Turner’s politics page, the fledgling All over Albany blog and in the Tech Valley Times. This humble moderator has also conversed with a number of area reporters and editors in the process, opening the channels of dialog and bridging the gap between the dodgy blogosphere and the world of mass media. All things said, this blog has grown at a pace and prosperity that was never imagined by it’s extremely hung over author.

But that which doesn’t evolve runs the risk of growing stagnant. And it seems the passing of iSaratoga’s second anniversary would be an ideal time to ask readers their thoughts on the direction of this site.

There are some changes in store, but nothing too dramatic. Posts might get a bit more frequent, a little less wordy and a bit more expanded to the events transpiring outside of the city limits. These are just some musings to provoke thoughts on this anniversary. At risk of sounding hackneyed, keep reading, keep commenting. Intelligent dialogue is the voice of a vibrant democracy.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your best so far.
Keep them coming.

1:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don’t worry you’ll have a lot to post about. Val Keehn and DK fresh out of rehab are just chomping at the bit to get back to destroying the City. I have no doubt they are lining up a full slate of cretins misfits and the mentally and morally challenged to run for public office. They meet three times a week with a religious furor that would make the Rev Wright envious. And we are ready to fight them so let the games begin.

4:14 PM  
Blogger firefly said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only Horatio could make such a damning typo in a blog mostly about the Saratogian's typos.

9:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Main Entry: hum•ble
Function: adjective
Pronunciation: 'h&m-b&l also chiefly Southern '&m-
Inflected Form(s): hum•bler/-b(&-)l&r/ ; hum•blest/-b(&-)l&st/
Etymology: Middle English, from Old French, from Latin humilis low, humble, from humus earth; akin to Greek chthOn earth, chamai on the ground
1 : not proud or haughty : not arrogant or assertive
2 : reflecting, expressing, or offered in a spirit of deference or submission - a humble apology
3 a : ranking low in a hierarchy or scale : INSIGNIFICANT , UNPRETENTIOUS b : not costly or luxurious - a humble contraption

7:16 AM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...


Now if only JRC would pay me for my typos...


I think 'insignificant' and 'unpretentious' were not the meanings I was reaching for. Try as in 'humble abode' or 'humble existence.' I suppose 'ranking low in a hierarchy' is right around where I figure. Just another working-class stiff trying to ease the pressure on my brain pan.

8:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Since we're discussing legislative leaders, what about the relationship between the Assembly speaker and his former top aide, who is of the female persuasion and now heads a powerhouse Albany lobbying firm?

10:32 AM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...


I'm all ears...

11:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

INSIGNIFICANT and UNPRETENTIOUS were capitalized when I cut and pasted this entry. Silly, I was just teasing. Just be careful trying to ease the pain, don't let too much pressure go at once, the infrastructure in Saratoga Springs is kinda old. Those manhole covers can fly pretty high :)

6:01 PM  
Blogger Faulkner said...

Happy Birthday... biatttch!

Keep up the good work raking the muck and ensuring that most of Saratoga's public servants awake each morning with that queasy feeling knowing their shenanigans could be exposed on the mighty "I".

Power to the straight talking bloggers!

2:59 AM  
Anonymous agphoto said...

The first site i look at each day; happy birthday to the best journalist in 12866!

11:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


The embarrassing typo (which isn't really a typo but a misspelling) is the "Go shorty, it's (you are)birthday" in the title. Jeeezus Christ, will people stop spelling "your" wrong?!? It's just carelessness on your part because you ought to know better. But, I bet you're (notice proper usage)going to tell me you "could care less."

Fish Creek Lunker

11:43 AM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...


Good catch. I was waiting for someone to notice that.

Believe it or not, I do strive for improved grammar and a reduction in the all-to-common errors. Yet, to err is human...and to forgive is divine.

To be honest, one of my guilty pleasures it to tie one on and reread my prose, truncating some phrases, correcting some grammar etc. Alas, I'll get it right one of these days.

7:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

your blog is much better suited to be a newspaper. I would be game for that. you have some actual credibility whereas most papers do not because they are obsessed about not offending anyone least of all share holders which isnt really what a newspaper is supposed to be about.

6:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It would be rude not to say Happy Birthday in a birthday issue. So, Happy Birthday. That said a word please about words, buzz words to be exact.
Dear Voters: 'Tis the season for political rhetoric. The buzz word this year seems to be "Change." Empty words buzzing around can be every bit as annoying as flies buzzing around ones head. In the case of the primary race for seats on the Saratoga Springs Democratic Committee, the buzz of the cry for change by a small group of people who call themselves Democrats for Change, is not only hollow, it is disingenuous.
Change can be a good thing when it is based on a genuine need. Change by its nature implies a forward movement. Ironically, this call for change comes from people determined to stay locked in the past. It is disingenuous to have caused the damage and then point the finger at others while crying don't worry, here we come to fix it. It puts one in mind of crying fire in a crowded room, or perhaps a wolf in sheeps clothing? That kind of change can only be destructive.
When one turns ones back on ones constituents, fails to attend the meetings they were elected to attend, refuses to sit at the table and conduct the business of the people's committee in harmony, one should not run around "buzzing."
I ask that voters reelect those committee members who have consistently shown up on their behalf: “To promote the principles of the Democratic Party in the open and inclusive governance of Saratoga Springs for the maintenance and continued improvement of the well being and quality of life for all city residents."
As for the buzz, remember it's a seasonal problem, keep the faith with those who truly work for you, keep your sense of humor, keep that screen door firmly closed and this too will pass.

9:56 AM  

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