TRAGEDY! Or, I will cope with my grief by holding a contest

SETH BAUMGARTNER'S LOVE MANIFESTO by Eric LuperMute and invisible people of the interwebz, this is a tragic day. TRAGIC, and I ain’t kidding. I went to a conference in San Francisco today – DrupalCon, if you’re the webby geek type (I’m not an actual code monkey, so maybe I can only be described as a webby geek sympathizer? A webby geek ally?) – and I took my precious, irreplaceable, autographed, personalized advance reader copy of SETH BAUMGARTNER’S LOVE MANIFESTO with me to read on the train. I happily did just that on the way into San Francisco, then tucked the book away and went off to the Moscone Center to rub elbows with the entertainingly devoted minions of the open source community. At the end of the day I got back on BART, found a seat, and pulled out my copy of LOVE MANIFESTO.

Except I didn’t pull it out because it wasn’t there. I lost it, a blunder of epic, horrendous proportions. And the personalized autograph was so nice and complimentary too. Forgive me, Eric Luper! Somewhere in the bowels of the Moscone Center it lies, forlorn and abandoned, unless somebody brought it to the lost and found, which I sincerely hope someone did because I WILL be at this conference for another two days.

Nevertheless, I am overcome with grief. In order to cope with this traumatizing event I’ve decided to hold a contest, my first contest since the inimitable Jacqui Robbins won the (still) sole existing #mikesempire t-shirt in all the multiverse. I know what you’re thinking (you’re utterly predictable, you are) – “but Mike, how does holding a contest help you cope with your grief? What kind of nonsensical gibberish is that, Mr. Crazypants?” My answer to that is BECAUSE I SAY IT DOES AND HOW DARE YOU QUESTION ME IN MY HOUR OF SORROW! The nerve!

So! Here’s are your contest rules. I’ll pick a winner at random, using something like the time-honored hat method. Leave a comment right here on any one of the following topics:

  1. A suggestion on what I should do to assuage my grief. Buy a sportscar? Watch a cartoonishly violent movie? Hit myself in the face with a hammer?
  2. A suggestion on how I can atone for this terrible, terrible mistake. Build a latrine? Perform an interpretive dance in honor of Eric Luper? Light myself on fire?
  3. A suggestion on what YOU would have done to avoid losing this ARC. A Secret-Agent-Man-style briefcase handcuffed to your wrist? A bionic compartment hidden in the folds of your abdomen? Leaving the book at home?

You’ll get an additional entry each for blogging, Tweeting or Facebooking a link to this contest (oh please do post the link to your tweet, FB status update or blog entry in your comment, because honestly, it’s not very likely I’m gonna go looking for it). I’ll give this contest until, I don’t know, let’s say midnight on Friday. Then I’ll post the winner of the contest on Saturday or Sunday. Or sometime after that.

Your prize? A pre-ordered copy of SETH BAUMGARTNER’S LOVE MANIFESTO. Right? PERFECT, isn’t it? Come on, look at the poetic justice! Look at the coming-full-circle thing! Look at the…okay, I got nothing else for you to look at.

Feeling like a signed-ARC-losing nitwit,


45 thoughts on “TRAGEDY! Or, I will cope with my grief by holding a contest

  1. Oh, woe! Oh, woe! Oh, dreadful, dreadful woe! I feel your pain because years ago, I visited the Winchester Mystery House, took many photos, and then lost that roll of film on the BART, and I KNOW those were the best photos I’ve ever taken in my life. (And I have no evidence to contradict that statement so it must be true.) Alas, in future, you must acquire a personal assistant (or trained service animal) whose main duty is keeping track of your belongings by following you around and picking up anything you drop.

    1. Hmmm…a personal assistant. EXCELLENT IDEA. I prefer animal to human, I think. Can I train an iguana to do that?

      1. You can probably train an iquana more easily than you can train a cat, but you’ll have less argument getting a service dog into public places like Applebee’s and the BART. But a small iguana might fit in the man-bag.

  2. I know what you can do, both to atone and rectify the situation. Fly out to Hudson NY for the Children’s Book Festival where Eric Luper will be signing hardcover editions of Seth Baumgartner’s Love Manifesto! It’s on May 1st, so you still have time.

    1. What’s that you say, Karen? You’d like to fly me out there and put me up in a nice hotel? HOW GENEROUS! No, no, I couldn’t…

  3. Wow. I’m trying to quit caffeine this week. There is no way I can top any of your own suggestions without fortification first.

    My frontal lobe feel like scrambled eggs right now. So perhaps to atone you should fly to Kansas City and deliver something cold and caffeinated to me. NO! I TAKE THAT BACK! I won’t cave, despite the mind-bogglingness that is MIke JUng’s LIttle Bloggy Wog!

    1. I salute the boldly selfish nature of your suggestion – you have earned a dollop of my respect. WELL DONE

    1. Oh you don’t fool me Deb, you’re just interested in the sobby ice cream photos, not the atonement! I can respect that.

  4. To assuage your grief, pour your heart into the book you’re writing, the one that some other BART rider will be enjoying so thoroughly she’ll miss her stop. Your future reader won’t have to worry about misplacing her copy, however, because she’ll have adhered a GPS chip to it.

    1. Oooh, GPS chip! That way I could find the book, track down whoever had it, and WREAK MY VENGEANC–err, I mean, give them a thank-you muffin basket.

    1. Wait a minute, you say that as if there’s something wrong with laughing at other people’s misery! What are you saying??

    1. Hmmm. Library order. Good, very good. Ordering one for myself…also good. Also, I could get a pet rabbit!

  5. Entering! And I retweeted Eric’s tweet, so hope that counts for another. 🙂

    You should, obviously, order another copy of the book from Eric & ask him to sign it. This practically guarantees that you will get your other book back, so you won’t have to assuage that grief–it will just go away!

    What I’d have done…well, unless I’m just going to be in the car & need that book to read while I wait for my son to get out of school, I do carry a purse JUST SO I DON’T LOSE PRECIOUS BOOKS! It’s almost a carrier-bag type thingy, purchased at the REI Scratch & Dent sale, and it’s khaki with lots of pockets, so really, Mike, something like this would probably qualify as manly. Or, yes, the briefcase. Backpack? Jackson-Pollacky bike jersey, with rear pocket? Something!

    Hope you find the book. 🙂

    1. Some kind of man-bag, eh? I DO have a very casual-but-stylish, cool-but-not-overly-hipsteresque messenger bag that I use that way. HEY, THAT’S THE PROBLEM. I was using my stupid laptop bag. AAARGH…

  6. Mike:
    1. There is nothing you can do to assuage your grief. You SHOULD be sad! A signed copy, are you KIDDING me? Wallow in your sorrow, embrace it as a just punishment for taking a SIGNED Luper so lightly. Good grief, man, I can’t even talk about this any longer.

    2. How can you atone? Really, there is nothing you can do to rectify this grievous error. Maybe if you do an interpretive dance IN a latrine WHILE on fire….no, that’s not a strong enough punishment. Wait…what song would you use? Because if it is something by Celine Dion, that might do. How about the theme to the Titanic? It would go nicely with the blue waters of the latrine!

    3. How would I not lose this book? If I were lucky enough to own a SIGNED Luper, especially one as hilarious as the one you managed to toss away as easily as a Big Mac wrapper on the side of a U.S. highway. When I get signed copies, I buy two. One for carting & loaning and the other, signed, for putting on a shelf & spine stroking.

    Please mend your lackadaisical ways and never let this happen again. (Did you seen the Da Vinci Code? Recreate the self-flagellation scene. That might work.)

    If all else fails, you could send a novel to my students, who would love to read Luper’s new book and cherish in the manner to which it is due. (In all seriousness, I hope your copy turns up! Thanks for brightening my day with your funny post!) 😉

    1. Aww, THAT’S THE SPIRIT! The blistering tone, the unrelenting scorn, the raging condemnation – that’s what I call a contest entry! Brava!

  7. You should watch Kung Fu Hustle. That always makes me feel better.

    And though it sucks that you lost your book, I love that you read something autographed, not hide it away.

    Though in this case…. Uh never mind. Kung Fu Hustle!

    1. Kung Fu Hustle is an AWESOME movie, I agree. Thanks for both the kind words and the accompanying equivocation… KUNG FU HUSTLE!

  8. This is sheer tragedy. Poor little book. Bad owner. I vote for giving yourself a paper cut and pouring lemon juice and then salt on it. Then covering your whole body with first honey and then fire ants before rolling in a poison ivy bush naked and then running into the conference self flagellating yourself with a whip made out of your own hair you meticulously braided together just for this purpose. But that’s just my little suggestion.

    1. Ellen, the funny thing is, I believe you when you say this is your LITTLE suggestion. I’m morbidly fascinated to know what your BIG suggestion would be.

    1. Such a story would certainly overflow with sadness! Weirdness too. And probably megalomaniacal lunacy. It might freak Eric out, now that I think about it…

  9. Of course, you could just ask all nice and polite-like and I could send you another ARC. I do have one left sitting right here on my desk. And if a book could be said to be smiling, this one would be doing it.

    Smiling, and just hoping to be read…. oh, and not to be left on a dirty train somewhere.

    Of course, there is a price to pay. In return, I demand a haiku about the book.


    1. Hmmm. Intriguing offer, Eric, I’ll have to think aboutOH OKAY IT’S A DEAL! One haiku coming up! Err, just so you know, it’ll be my first haiku in…possibly forever? Have I ever written a haiku? Ever? I think never. Nevertheless, I shall write a stunning LOVE MANIFESTO haiku.

  10. Obviously you do what we do when we do that thing we do…do. What were we talking about? Oh yeah, flogging oneself. So are you, like, this author’s number one fan? Publicist? Maybe you’re stalking him? Cool! I want my own personal stalker. For your penance you must obsessively view and comment on The Lisas blog for one day. Did I say day? I meant year. Yeah, that’s the ticket.

    1. Lisa, “stalker” is such a provocative term – I much prefer the phrase “obsessed creep.” And you slipped up with that “for one day” stuff, but props for recovering in such bold and demanding fashion! Kudos to you!

  11. Flogging was my first option, but since some upstart (Oops! Sorry, Lisa.) has taken that I suggest a zen monastery where you can reflect upon the meaning of losing a signed book. In true zen fashion you’ll, of course, renounce worldly ways and focus on the inner being and its connection to the universe. The option is to let Eric send you another copy and get over it! Let me know what you decide.

    1. Lee, if I let Eric send me another copy but DON’T get over it, do you think other people might send me books too?

  12. It seems to me you’re starting to make amends with this contest. But…to really be sure the stars align with your karma and all is right with the world? ‘Tis simple.

    Give up #mikesempire.

    Ha! Gotcha.

    1. Oh Vivian, I’m just ASKING for suggestions, I’m not actually going to USE any of them. (psst, everyone but Vivian, I’ll totally use YOUR suggestions)

  13. Dear Ninny King,

    You know that I worship and suck up all I can to keep Mikes Empire strong, but for the love of all thing holy and magical, why would you have taken such a precious heirloom of Mikes Empire out of your palace?
    I personally would have secured a small display shrine within Mike’s Palace. I would have placed many worthy Minions to guard it. I would have used lasers and alarms, and all other hight tech stuffs to keep IT safe. James Bond would have had extreme trouble getting near this ARC.
    I too feel your sadness and undersatnd your loss. My son Monk suggests, to make yourself feel better, you should put on your favorite super hero costume (tights and all), head down to your favorite amusement park, and ride the biggest, baddest roller coaster there is.
    Yet, Ninny King you must pay for your actions. I feel you should follow the above suggestion, put back on that super hero costume (tights and all), and go stand in the middle of that favorite veggie market you hold so dear on Saturday mornigs, and announce over and over what a terrible thing you have done.
    So dear Ninny King these are my thought on this most egregious happening. Please feel free to immediatly announce me the winner.

    With utmost sucking up,

    MRDunn12 or Ultra Badass Cosmic Killer Ninja Waltzing Onion Warrior, or Monomaniacal Pinstriped Superfan in Charge of Excessive Budgeting, or Interplanetary Ring Leader of Parental Brainwashing Activities, or Interdimentional Distributor of Fish & Candy-based Explosives, or Intergalacic Supervisor of Unholy Brain Shampoo Supply Chains, or last but certainly not least, Cosmic Overseer of Imperially-Mandated Grovelling by Conquered Peoples.

    1. WELL DONE, ONION WARRIOR MINION. Additional kudos for remembering “onion warrior,” although I’m not sure it’ll make any difference if I wear my superhero costume to the farmer’s market AGAIN…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s