(Originally published on MOLI 6/24/8)
Social networking sites work counter to that old Groucho Marx/Woody Allen joke, about not wanting to belong to any club that would have you as a member. The Internet is all about context. You are who you friend. MOLI and Facebook are both supposed to be havens from MySpace, for â€œgrownupsâ€ who think MySpace is for teenagers. But SNSes only succeed if they have that critical mass of users who attract other users. Theyâ€™re like giant high school cliques; people only want to hang out in the ones where the people they want to hang out with are.
In his “Wk 52 — self-ish” blog post for MOLI, the poet Mike Tyler discusses his own reasons for blogging much better than I do:Â â€œI like Moli because it is new and growing and I like things at the beginnings like Silent Movies, and Early Rock â€˜n Roll (when the electric guitar was just invented), and any kind of stuff that is going on before grown-ups find it and begin their jihad. (Look out for the word-ish, â€˜monetize.â€™)â€
Tyler has been posting one blog a week under the profile name nyc boi for one year, every Sunday morning â€“ hence the blog name, sunday am. I first met Mike when he was a poet hanging out at spaces like the Nuyorican Poets CafÃ© and ABC No Rio back in the early ’90s, and made him the lead subject of a story I wrote for The Village Voice in ’91: “CafÃ© Society.” Weâ€™ve been friends since, and when he found out I was hired by MOLI some 52 weeks ago, he decided to make it a place to hang his own words.
sunday am can be a tough, trippy, tripping, hilarious, profound read. Mike has always been a philosopher as well as a writer, and sometimes you have to follow his punning neologisms â€“ words like â€œsomethinc,â€ â€œhumane beanâ€ — back to their etymological source (Mikeâ€™s brain) to make sense of him. I always find the investigation worth the wade.
In “self-ish,” Tyler â€“ who made a name/spectacle of himself as a globetrotting performance poet back when spoken word was the MTV rage â€“ in typical Tyler fashion, finds he has no lessons to share from his first year in a new medium: â€œIâ€™ve had words of wisdom about blogging, before I did it, and now that Iâ€™ve done it, I have not one jot (whutz a jot?) more than I started.â€
But of course, Mike does have something profound to say about blogging, and it has to do with landing where your feet find themselves â€“ monetizers beware and be damned. Like Juliana Luecking, Donnell Alexander, Wendy Case, Natasha Bright, Jana Martin, Jeanne Fury, Cathay Che, Audra Hodges, Neal Pollack, Martin Johnson, Richard Pachter, Rob Levine, Celeste Fraser Delgado, Rebecca Wakefield, Erika Schickel, and [your name here], nyc boi is the kind of person I want to hang out with, virtually or otherwise. As long as theyâ€™re here, Iâ€™ll be here.