Monday, May 3, 2010

All the conservative Rons

Two of the most persistent surprises to me about my blogging is the high percentage of Rons and political conservatives who admit to reading it.

I know six Rons who read and other sites where I simultaneously post.

That’s seems like a lot to me.

I’ve never applied the widgets that’ll inform how many actual readers I have, but if I extrapolate based solely on the Rons then I believe the numbers must be substantial.

Why all the Rons?

Had I been blogging in the 1950s, the number of Rons would have been more understandable. That was when the name was 12th most popular among parents naming baby boys.

But now the name has dropped all the way to 249 on behind even clunky male handles like Micah, no. 56, or the oddly equine sounding Colton, finishing way out of the money at no. 85.

Even more mystifying is the acknowledged number of conservative readers.

Fifty percent of the Rons are conservative. Plus, there’s Marty, Doug, Kyle, Susan, Max Power, Joyce, musicsmith, Betsy, Chuck and -- who knows? -- perhaps even Ann Coulter and Dick Cheney.

This is surprising because I’m not conservative, disdain conservative ideas and devote nearly one out of every seven posts to bashing conservatives for being stingy, humorless and stupid.

I try to be the opposite of all those things. I strive in all matters to bestow enlightenment, levity and a really swank gratuity with every check.

So why conservatives read this stuff is an enduring mystery to me.

Well, one of the Rons gave me some insight the other day.

We were golfing and engaged in a running argument about Ben Roethlisberger. The topic is upending traditional liberal/conservative law and order thinking.

Liberals like me tend to believe in redemptive third, fourth and fifth chances for miscreants, while conservatives are on record as supporting punitive three-strikes-and-you’re-out laws for petty crooks like shoplifters who steal canned tuna to keep from starving to death.

Of course, most petty crooks aren’t white multi-millionaires who helped the home team win two Super Bowls. So the Roethlisberger case instigates lively discussion.

Liberals like me believe there’s enough embarrassing evidence to warrant dumping him, while conservatives like Ron believe the Steelers should continue to pay him millions of dollars while ignoring his recreational rapes of underage drunks in squalid bathrooms blocked by beefy bodyguards.

It’s a bedrock philosophical discrepancy.

So neither of us was budging on the argument as it raged from the first tee through the fifth green, both of us failing to convince the other that he’s an idiot.

Then Ron laughed and said he was enjoying the back and forth. “What fun would it be if we all agreed on everything?’’ he asked.

“It would be hell if we all agreed with you,” I said, “but if everyone agreed with me it would a utopia.”

And, truly, that’s what it would be. Music would be better. Flowers would smell sweeter and at night happy families would gather in the streets to sing devotionals. If someone said, “Say, did you see last night’s episode of ‘My Name is Earl?” he or she would never be greeted with blank stares.

This blissful existence is my goal.

I devote two or three hours every other day to writing blog posts designed to get people to agree with everything I say.

I don’t do this for money, for prestige or peer acclaim. I do it because it is my goal to get everyone -- liberals, conservatives, wrongs and Rons -- to have a head-slapping eureka moment where they exclaim: “Gadzooks! He’s right. Conan O’Brien is an annoying spaz! The National Enquirer should win the Pulitzer Prize! And Dick Cheney is truly the logical successor to Simon Cowell on American Idol!

“It would be fun if we had scannable forehead bar codes that revealed things like name, astrological sign, political disposition, cereal preference and current level of sexual arousal. He’s right! You can’t have a party without the Stones and the overuse of exclamation points in casual writing is a pox on the grammatical landscape!!!!”

So, yes, it would be paradise if I could convince everyone that my liberal arguments were correct and everyone agreed it was thus.

The bigger question, I asked Ron, is why a conservative like him would ever bother to read me at all.

“It’s because it’s entertaining!” he said.

Even when I’m trying to make a non-humorous and thoughtful political point?

“Especially when you’re trying to make a non-humorous and thoughtful political point!”

So there you go.

Eight Days To Amish: Helping make Rons and conservatives jolly since 2008.


Max Power said...

And what shall we call you sir; Bill or Barry?

So you say I'm a Ron huh? It's ok, I've been called worse. I did in fact vote for Mr Reagan but I've also voted for Slick Willie - so what does that really make me?

Ok, lately I'm a Ron. Happy to be one. This Ron reads Eight Days to Amish because the Bill/Barry writes the words that flow and words that bring a smile to my day. Smiles and laughs are much harder to come by these days so you have to get'em while you can.

And while we don't always agree on thier content - we both agree with your right to express and defend them.

Anonymous said...

This might be your best writing to date!

And all this time i thought i had already convinced you!

By the way you got the "you" and "me" backwards.
“It would be hell if we all agreed with you,” I said, “but if everyone agreed with me it would a utopia.”

otherwise it's a great post!

Chris Rodell said...

Thanks for checking in Max, and for your friendly comment.

I should have made the headline more clear, but I'm not referring to all of you as Rons. It is true that I have six actual Rons who read my blog, none of them Reagan, although they are 50 percent conservative.

And as was just pointed out to me by the Ron I reference in the story, those righty Rons are actually lefties! Amazing. I wish I'd have known that and included.

It really does please me that you and others who favor conservative policies feel comfortable visiting the site. It's a mistake too many people make to let political POV restrict their friendships. Glad you don't feel that way.

And thanks, Anonymous, for the proof-reading. I'll fix what needs fixin'!

Best to both of you,