April 2, 2000





Blowback is a little something that happens in certain kinds of guns. When fired, the explosion of the shell drives it out of the chamber and toward its target, and in these certain kinds of guns -- semi-automatic handguns like the Glock 9mm, for example -- some of that explosive pressure is used to push the slide back so as to expel the used cartridge and feed a new one into the chamber. I'm using the term a little differently right now. I fired an April Fool's Day round yesterday and now that explosive pressure is blowing back at me.

Yesterday's entry, wherein I said I was quitting, was a joke. An April Fool's gag. Totally tongue in cheek. But I've gotten quite a bit of mail from people who believed me and reacted a lot differently than I expected. These same people are probably going to be hurt and angry when they read this entry and find out I was only kidding. Blowback.

I'm tied up in the middle of printing pictures for my sister's new baby's birth announcement (she's picking them up at 7:00, it's 2:00 now, and I haven't even cut the negs down yet) so I don't have time right now to explain as fully or apologize as completely as I'd like to, but I wanted to put something up so people would know I was kidding and I could hopefully not hurt or piss off anyone else. For now, I'll explain with the above and apologize with what's below, and I'll post a proper entry later this evening.

This is an excerpt from an e-mail to one of my readers who was very upset when I confessed that I was kidding. It's off-the-cuff and not particularly well thought out, but it's sincere and I think it'll do until later.

I put that entry up thinking "ha ha, april fools" and didn't think it was any big deal, but I'm feeling worse and worse about that all that time.  I've gotten a lot of very nice, very sweet mail from a lot of readers saying how much they've enjoyed me and how much they'll miss me.  I didn't expect that AT ALL.  I figured I'd get a few "are you joking?" from fans and some "good, get the hell out of here" from the critics, but I certainly didn't expect people to respond so honestly and nakedly.  I'm touched, I'm flattered, and I'm starting to feel like an asshole.

Frankly, I feel kind of stuck now.  I don't know how to step back from this without hurting people.  People are going to feel, like you did, taken advantage of and manipulated and they're probably going to be hurt and angry about it.  I didn't want to hurt anyone with this; I just wanted to pull a harmless prank.  This thing is backfiring in my face in a way I never anticipated.

I'm sorry I've upset you.  I really didn't mean to make you feel that way.

That'll have to do for now; I just don't have time for anything more. I'm sorry if anyone is hurt or embarassed by this.

More later...