"Piss Soaked Turd Loaf"
That's what I was called in just one of the nearly 600 "responses" to my article on Widespread Panic in this week's paper version of Unfair Park. In the piece, I wrote that fans of the band were notorious for being unable to take any criticism whatsoever; the retorts clearly bear out my claim.
What's most distressing is the amount of venom laced into the insults hurled at me for daring to say that I think that Widespread's music is boring. One enterprising fan even listed my home and cell numbers so folks could get in touch more personally. Sadly, I was not at home so my sweet mother-in-law had to withstand the endless barrage of "fuck you, asshole" calls left on my answering machine before she unplugged it so my children could get to sleep. On the other hand, another "caring" soul called me on my cell to warn me about the initial posting.
"I don't like what you wrote about Widespread," he told me, "but freedom of speech and all that is more important." Well, at least between a toke, one fan had a conscious.
Besides the discomfort of my kids and in-law, even more disturbing is the homophobic bent to many of the comments. Oddly, in many of the responses, I was told that I must be a fan of Death Cab for Cutie and, as such, I was also a "peter-puffer" who enjoyed receiving "butt sex from boy bands" Actually, I have the same disdain for boy bands and Death Cab as I do Widespread. So to each and everyone of the commentators who dialed my numbers endlessly and felt brave enough to post using my name, today I received the equivalent to 500 Grammy Awards, upon which I shall engrave "Proud Piss Soaked Turd Loaf." --Darryl Smyers
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