Thursday, December 12, 2013

The Relaunch

[Editor's Note: It's been two and a half years since I last heard from Tim. Two and a half glorious, editing-free years. I kept tabs on him, of course, which is easy to do in these days of oversharing on social media sites. Thanks to Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and Instagram I knew that he'd met a lovely young woman named Katie and that they are recently married. He looked happier than I'd ever seen him and from what I can tell the old cliché, "she's the best thing that ever happened to him" applies.

So when I got an email from Tim a few weeks ago I was a little surprised. I figured that he was happily settled into married life and that his other pursuits were keeping him busy. And they are, but what he told me was that he wanted to dust off the old site and use it to re-enter the public discussion.
In short, my days of editing Tim's rambling, incoherent writings are back. And to be honest, I'm excited. He seems motivated and enthusiastic about his writing again and that means that this might just be a fun job. Or it could flame out spectacularly. At this point I'll take either one.] 

For those of you just joining us, let me recap. Actually, I won't re-cap. I'll let my editor help me out with this.

Q: Hi, Tim. Welcome back.
A: Thanks.

Q: So what is this exactly?
A: This is the Internet. It's basically a series of tubes.

A: Sorry. This is an online question-and-answer site that I began back in 2006 under the name "Ask Mitssob."

Q: Who or what is "mitssob"?
A: Mitssob is a nickname I was given in college. It's my name spelled backwards.

Q: Why did you decide to come back now?
A: DON'T CALL IT A COMEBACK!

Q: (pauses) Um, what?
A: Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch? Right?

Q: Actually it was LL Cool J, but I get your point.
A: The reason I'm coming back now is that the itch to resume has gotten too big for me to scratch. Or something.

Q: Huh?
A: How about this: I missed writing "Ask Mitssob". I've spent some time reading back over the questions and answers from years gone by and I remembered how much fun it was. So I decided to re-launch.

Q: Now that we've gotten that out of the way, what do you want to do here?
A: First and foremost I want to keep true to the original mission of "Ask Mitssob": taking random questions and giving random answers. It was a lot of fun and gave me a chance to learn and explore, so I want to keep doing that. I also want to start answering questions that I see in daily life and use those questions to tackle the news of the day and give my opinions on them.

Q: Will this be more political than the old "Ask Mitssob"?
A: Yes. In the old days I answered questions about some political topics, including elections, neoconservatism, and climate change hysteria. I enjoyed the chance to think through topics and develop my own personal ideology and beliefs. Lately I've had the urge to chime in on the public political discourse, but I also didn't want to clutter up my other personal social media. This brand and platform solves that problem. I've got both this blog and a twitter account, and will expand further as I develop the brand more.

Q: Why the name change? "Ask Mitssob" had a certain simple ring to it.
A: I know, but I also felt like it was time for a change. Like I said, I wanted to create a brand across multiple platforms, one that lets me separate my opinions from my other social media. I already use "mitssob" for my personal social media so I wanted to create a split. After thinking and trying various combinations on a piece of paper I finally came up with "Answer Boss". Simple, descriptive, and it works my name into it. Everybody wins.

Q: Except for people who loved the old name. You've kind of screwed them.
A: Well as the saying goes, you can't make an omelet without pissing people off.

Q: I see that your gift for rhetorical flourish needs as much work as it ever did.
A: And that you haven't lost your sense of humor.

Q: What other things are you going to use this site for?
A: The first side project I'm going to tackle is writing a review of a new book by Hugh Hewitt called "The Happiest Life". I've been a fan of Hugh and his eponymous radio show for many years. In fact, part of why I'm creating this platform is so that I can take a more active part in the Hughniverse. When Hugh announced that he was writing a new book and that he was looking for a "Street Team" I eagerly jumped on. Members get an advance e-copy of the book, and in exchange they have to write a review and promote the book on their social media network. It's a good first use of this new platform and I'm excited to try it out.

Q: Last question: can we expect to see an increase the quality of your writing?
A: Yes, but it will take time so please bear with me. I'm a bit rusty at this.

Q: Well good luck to both of us.
A: Likewise? Thanks? Not sure how I'm supposed to respond to that.

Q: Just sign off already. I've got other things to do.
A: OK. Thanks for coming back.