First things first: I owe all of you an apology.
I’m a day late giving you the answers to what was actually true on my list of Ted “facts.” Judging by the response to this post, you’ve been eagerly anticipating this moment, much like the next Real World/Road Rules Challenge.
Wait, is that just me? So be it. BMX all-star T.J. Lavin pretending to care about what’s going on in the ruins or the gauntlet or wherever else is just good TV.
Anywho, things have been pretty busy in my real world office this week, meaning my creative reserves have been somewhat tapped by the time I’ve gotten home. No excuse, I know, but how reliable can you expect something called a “blog” to be, really?
And as long as I’ve made you suffer this long, I don’t feel too bad about dragging it out just a bit longer. My reasons are twofold: 1) I have one final duty as a Beautiful Blogger—namely, passing the award onto others; and 2) the big reveal is going to put me in the center of a massive controversy. I figure I’m entitled to a few final moments of peace beforehand.
So, on to the Beautiful Bloggers; given my imminent downfall, I feel like Nixon handing out pardons before hopping on that helicopter.
There are two blogs/sites I’d like to single out for this award:
This site is in large part the brainchild of one of my old college roommates, Chris, who yesterday contributed an MVP-caliber comment on my bathroom post.
Sidebar: Chris, if you were writing that comment from the bathroom, I’m not judging. When the lights went out on me that second time, I was actually listening to music on my iPhone. That’s surely grosser than typing.
Back to Chris’ site. He’s from El Paso, Texas, the home, fittingly enough, of the University of Texas at El Paso, or UTEP. UTEP’s athletic teams are nicknamed the Miners, and Miner Illustrated is devoted to covering them. It started out as a blog last summer and is now a full-fledged site, which is all the more impressive since he has a day job and is currently finishing his doctoral dissertation.
Simply put, I am amazed at what he’s created, and how quickly he has done it. We used to co-host a weekly sports talk show on campus radio, and I couldn’t be happier to see him continuing on in that direction. The only thing he’s lacking is that sweet Ozzy public service announcement we used to play.
100% FUNemployed is a blog written by my friend Megan. No, not the one who named me a Beautiful Blogger—pay attention to the spelling, people.
Speaking of my absolutely endearing concern with spelling and grammar, Megan knows it better than most, as she was an intern in my office for two years. During that time, I can’t tell you how many times she sent me an email that literally made me laugh out loud.
Seriously, if parodying the Gossip Girl narration were an Olympic sport, she’d be at home polishing her gold right now.
Many times, I told her what a knack I think she has for humor writing and that I hoped she’d find a way to use it down the road. This probably wasn’t the most practical career advice, considering the many lucrative outlets into which I’ve parlayed my skill in that regard.
Nevertheless, she looked past my sobering example and started writing her blog. Her voice there rings true to what it’s like to talk to her, and she is one of the people who convinced me to start blogging myself.
So, I guess what I’m really saying is, you can blame her.
OK, I can’t stall any longer. It’s time for me to share the three things off that list of 10 that are, indeed, true. Just as a refresher, here’s the list again:
1) I sat next to one of the Baldwin brothers on a flight to Phoenix. To this day, I don’t know which one it was, only that it wasn’t Alec.
2) When I was 11, my dad taught me how to hotwire a car.
3) Although I grew up in Michigan, I was actually born in Cleveland.
4) I have reserved the handle “AuthorTedFox” on Twitter so if I ever do get famous, people won’t be able to send out false Tweets claiming to be me.
5) I am a card-carrying member of Mensa. Stop laughing.
6) During my senior year, I won my high school’s talent show by rapping Outkast’s “ATLiens.” I think it was my Isaiah Rider Timberwolves jersey that put me over the top.
7) I was an extra in 61, the movie about the Mickey Mantle/Roger Maris chase of Babe Ruth’s single-season home run record that was shot in part at the old Tiger Stadium.
8) In college, I dunked during an intramural basketball game. At least two-thirds of the opposing team was drunk, but still.
9) After our high school prom got canceled, I was in a meeting with our principal and indirectly accused him of being a dictator.
10) When I moved to Connecticut, we couldn’t fit my bed in the U-Haul, so I slept on a hammock the entire six months I lived there.
No one ended up nailing all three (but I am flattered that several of you believed I could have dunked once upon a time), and Ryan was the only one to get two.
One of his correct guesses was 4, the Twitter thing. I went to this communications event (with Brian, actually), and one of the presenters freaked me out about the possibility of someone using your name. “TedFox” was already taken, so this was the next best option. So don’t believe anything you hear from that other jackass.
Thanks to my post a couple of days ago, you also all know by now that 6 is true. Big ups to Rein and Joey for getting this without the hint. However, I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that the real credit here goes to the sixth-grade basketball team I coached that year, as I had them dance during the chorus. And yet I’m still weirded out by Kidz Bop. Interesting.
So 4 and 6 are right. Further, we’ve already established that Ryan went two for three, and because he didn’t pick 6, that means one of his other two—2 (the hotwiring adventure) or 9 (the dictator accusation)—has to be the final piece to the puzzle.
A few of you confidently ruled out 9 because I qualified my statement with “indirectly,” leaving us with my dad and me drivin’ it like it was hot, right?
Er, not so much.
(OK, deep breath. They can’t hurt you. They’re miles away. No one hits a funny man.)
Here’s the thing: When I had that exchange with our principal, I compared the way our school was being run to a dictatorship but never went so far as to call him a dictator. However, in retelling this story countless times over the years, I’ve taken this smallest of liberties with the details to enhance the experience for the listener.
Just call me James Frey.
In my defense, this one embellishment didn’t keep anyone from winning. Seriously, in what universe would my dad let me cross live wires on a car? Have you met me?
So for the record, the winning combination was 4, 6, and 9. Thanks for playing. Please forward me any ideas for topics for future lists where I can make up lies. It was pretty fun.
And I will now be taking my phone off the hook.