I Will Not Celebrate Pointless Milestones

This week marks an important moment in Taftese history. Not only is this the 50th column I have written for this fine website, but this is also the second birthday of the website.

It is pointless milestones like these that makes me wax nostalgic for other pointless milestones. Such as the 10th anniversary of the Bears' Super Bowl Victory. I remember it well. In 1995, they were giving away cups at Soldier Field and talking about special events that the Bears were participating in that year as apart of the "yearlong celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Bears' 1985 Super Bowl Victory." And of course, every real Bears fan in Chicago was wondering the same thing: Why in the living hell have we not won a Super Bowl since then?

The reason, of course, is because, the Bears staff felt that it was necessary to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Super Bowl victory before actually celebrating another one. This is what the Bulls are shooting for, and the Cubs are shooting for the 100 year drought to "celebrate." They're only 6 seasons away!

But for me, these website birthdays and columns that won't get published are just representative of things that I have never really had: birthdays. You see, I am a Christmas baby, which means that there are lots of Jesus jokes pointed in my direction, but it also means that lots of people don't remember my birthday. Sure, they try to cover it up by making a joke of it, but they don't remember. And over the years, I have learned that it doesn't really matter because birthdays don't really matter. Really, what is a birthday other than an annual congratulatory party for not dying? With cake. I like cake. So I guess birthdays aren't that bad.

So it is Taftese's birthday. And we have been around for two years now, which is just mind-boggling to me. And I say we in total seriousness because as much as this website is insanely narcissistic and about me and my writing, it could not exist without you, the reader. Indeed, a lot of the material on the website doesn't even come from me. And a lot of the reason the website is the way it is is because of readers. For example, did you know...

- The person to appear on Taftese the most other than me is Jake Shorr, who has published 24 One-Ring Circuses (by comparison, I have done 15). He has also appeared on Quote of the Week 7 times, the most out of anyone.
Other than Mr. Shorr, the people with the most quotes are Ross Gianfortune and Casey Schreiner with 4 each (Ross' fourth was this week). Two of Ross' have to do with poop. Casey is one of only two individuals to have two Quotes of the Week in a row, (Lucinda Gagliano is the other) and Casey was also featured in the very first Quote of the Week ever.
- Marisa Wegrzyn takes time to read just about everything in the Short Works section and critiques it in a thoughtful, constructive, intelligent manner because she fucking rules.
- Lots of people have people have helped me out with HTML and errors on links and spelling and grammar and whatnot. I like constructive criticism, and I like to know when I have made a mistake. Nobody is flawless, not even me. So thanks to Parker, Brix and Conbeer especially in this category.
- Innumerable people have sent me humorous photos and graphics for graphic of the week. If I listed them all here, I think that I would probably list everyone that has ever read this website.

... so my point throughout all of this is that, really, even though I write almost everything and do all of the posting and code and a lot of graphic editing, this website is just as much yours as it is mine.

Who am I kidding? It's way more mine than yours. But still, I thank you for surfing in week after week. I thank you for the graphics. I thank you for your suggestions, and most of all, I thank you for your e-mails, both complementary and not. An e-mail can make my day or my week. When I receive an e-mail from someone that has read something of mine that they enjoyed or made them laugh, it makes me feel like all of this has not been an entire waste of time; and it also makes me feel like I'm doing the right thing with my life.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.