Look, obviously, I disagree with both Bunch and Scott, but they may be right on some level. The thing is, as Bunch says– “turnabout is fair play, you reap what you sow, etc.” And that was the spirit in which I went after McCain. I really felt and feel that he was unfair to John, and the Culture11 wound is still fresh. I care very deeply for a lot of the people who were involved in that enterprise and I guess it was a bit soon. I took McCain to be unfairly harsh to John and Culture11, in a way that to me signalled that he was fair game for some snarking.
But as is often the case with petty revenge, ideas about who started it and who was the first to go below the belt tend to have no ending. And Scott’s right, it doesn’t do much for me; surely, arguing with Bunch hasn’t done me any favors today. So who knows. It did feel good. Interestingly, I think despite the fact that I was flipping off one of her favorites, Helen might see that I was embodying the principles of argumentative pugilism and loyalty that she admires.
For now, let me say that I’m not certain that there was much benefit to saying what I said.
I do want to clear something up– Bunch says in his comments that I am “an amateur man of letters who has written about how much he wishes to become a professional man of letters”. I actually think I have been fairly consistent in saying that I’m not looking to write professionally. I have actually had some offers to write regularly for pay, although it wouldn’t be enough to support myself. I have turned them down for assorted reasons. Not that I am not envious in some ways of many professional writers, bloggers and pundits; I certainly am. But they aren’t pure jealousies of the opportunity to do this professionally; and I have had opportunities that I have not followed, for personal reasons. I have a complicated relationship to this enterprise.