Thank you, all of you. Based on the final vote total, and barring any judge's decision to the contrary (remember, it's not your vote that counts but who counts the vote), Simply Left Behind has won the 2007 Weblog Award for the Best Blog, 5001st through 6750th...
This blog had much stacked against it: Whiskeyfire draws 30 times the number of visitors than Simply Left Behind. Had he wanted to, Thers could have crushed SLB. Likewise for The Stupid Shall Be Punished, the "liberal" from Idaho (which means by New York standards, pretty conservative, but I intend over the next few days to explore that blog further), which outdraws SLB by a factor of ten.
In truth, I missed that I was a finalist until the second day of voting, when I got an e-mail from someone who stumbled across the category. So not only was I outgunned, I was taken off-guard.
I truly did not expect to be named a finalist. So many awards in Blogtopia (© Skippy) attract so many entries, and this little pony of a blog never seemed to get noticed amdist all the thoroughbreds. I was thrilled that Miss Cellania, among others (including me...I'm never above a cheap self-promoting stunt :-D ), named me for consideration.
And shocked when I found myself in a race. After lacing...OK, velcroing (I'm from Noo Yawk, and need to move fast), and starting from several hundred votes down, I decided to give it a shot.
After all, it may be the only one I do win. I was in the right place at the right time, but I have a fairly loyal opposition who was determined to see me lose. How do I know this?
From a few comments sprinkled about Blogtopia (© Skippy) whereby people admitted in the open their dislike for me, and hinted that they would stop me from winning by any means at their disposal.
Knowing the nature (and identity, I should add) of some of these people, and guessing at the rest, I realized it would take something like 900 votes to win.
I also know that, as SLB gains notoriety, and is considered for more awards, I will be up against serious competition from the right-wing, which as I noted earlier this week, can self-organize like amoebae on a turd. This is, in large part, why I think this might be SLB's one shot at the brass ring.
Both of these, the right wing presence as well as my troll-ring, play to a weakness of mine: I like to goad people who don't like me-- and are disagreeable about it-- on, which just makes them angrier at me, and just makes them more determined to take me down a peg.
Which plays to a strength of mine, one I'm pretty sure my fanbois didn't take into account: my determination. I want to thank my fanbois for making me care about this race. When I first realized how far behind I was, I was merely determined to put up a good show, maybe latch down third, with a few hundred votes, make SLB respectable.
When I saw the enmity and spite being posted towards me, I wanted this! I had something to prove. There were times during the past week when I thought about conceding that I couldn't catch up, that this troll-presence had too big a lead and too big an advantage and hated me more than I wanted the win. And then I found more strength, and forced myself to work just that much harder...I thought if I kept it close enough until Wednesday, I could dig up a few hundred or so one-off votes around the Internets.
SLB had a lot more going for it than my determination, however. It had you folks, first of all. There may not be as many of you as so many other blogs seem to attract, but you are loyal and generous. As I said in my e-mail to my mailing list last night, this blog isn't about me, even if it features me and my opinions. It's about you:
I believe in this blog as an example of what's right about the Internet, a place to read and think and discuss, and to take something away from that can make a difference.I started this blog after being egged on by katrina, precisely because she read in my words on other blogs that which needed to be let out: my mind. I want to thank her, especially, for giving me the courage and idea for SLB. And I want to thank ThumbPer, too, for his wonderful support of this blog, and allowing me to annoy him (and you) weekly for his posts.
And YOU guys make that difference! Me, I just write. It's you guys that are the inspiration for all this.
Too, SLB's win as a group effort had a lot more going for it from you guys. I don't think my opposition counted on the fact that among my friends I count more than one OCD sufferer. To my friends who really dug in deep and talked up this blog, thank you.
Another asset is a daughter at one of the biggest public universities in the world, who has friends that span the globe...and who was desperate for tickets to a concert this weekend. To you, my child, I owe a large vote of thanks.
I should also like to praise Thers and Whiskeyfire. It's a fine blog...hell, James WOLCOTT has referenced it, and for too long it has not appeared on my blogroll, nor been darkened by my shadow, an oversight I intend to correct. Thers has been nothing but gracious and ethical about this entire thing even in the face of my own belchings, and deserves a heartfelt thank you. He rocks!
Even Bubblehead has shown a good sense of humour about all this, and I thank him, despite his apparent hope that I'd be distracted by the Kucinich impeachment intiative...as I do to all the other contestants, each of whom deserved his or her place on the roster. Any of them deserved this award as much as SLB
I owe a very large debt of gratitude to John Amato, Nicole Belle, Blue Gal, and especially Mike Finn over at Crooks&Liars, for allowing me to post links to the voting from their blog, and to Mike in particular for allowing me a turn at the wheel of his Blog Round Up. Mike has always been particularly kind to SLB, posting links and such.
Which brings up another debt I have: to Dame Fortune, Lady Luck, or the love of Jesus in my sea-blue eyes. If this contest had been any other week, I likely would have been creamed like a porn star in a "multiples" money shot, but it happened the one week that I was guest blogging at an enormous site. I cannot discount the great cosmic wheel.
The record will show that SLB beat Whiskeyfire. The truth is very different. Since history is written by the victors, let me set the record straight: SLB captured the most votes because of the graciousness of Thers.
But Whiskeyfire won the race off the tally sheet.