Thursday, December 18

The aftermath.

Back in the day, I used to blog quite a lot. I built up a regular readership, until I could rely on around 800 hits a day. Wow, 800 hits, I thought. That's impressive, I thought. Some days, it was 1000. Amazing.

I don't blog much any more, don't have the same sort of following. I mean, I blog like four times a year now. The other day, I thought, hey, this post's actually pretty good. Might get a bit of attention. It might even get really big — like, 1000 hits. Maybe even 2000.

Then Tim Worstall blogged it. Then he Tweeted it. Several thousand people read it. SEVERAL THOUSAND. It was amazing. Then Marc Andreessen Tweeted it.

And then all hell broke loose.

It's been the weirdest day of my life. Which sounds ridiculous, doesn't it? If you'd suggested to me a week ago that having a blog post go viral could result in the weirdest day of my life, I'd've thought you were deranged. It's just a load of people reading some of my writing. How weird could it be? And, you know, I've had some pretty weird days. But — trust me on this — going unexpectedly viral is seriously bloody weird.

The post's been reproduced in so many places, it's no longer possible to track how much it's being read. Looks like at least a quarter of a million people. It's in the papers — not just online, but in print. I am famous. For fifteen minutes, at least.

Everything I wanted to say about Brand and RBS, I said. I won't be revisiting the topic. My apologies to those of you who are apparently gagging for more. I find it bizarre that anyone might think that that piece constituted insufficient writing, but hey. My favourite comment I've seen on the Interwebs so far:

Maybe book 2 will come out soon.

To those journalists wanting interviews: Sorry, but no. It's not my forte. If you want to discuss this further, please contact RBS's press office. They're very nice people.

To those journalists who have decided to harass my family: Please stop it. Sneaking around people's back gardens is not exactly classy. And I can save you some time anyway: you're not going to find any dirt on me. Not because I'm wonderful, but because I'm dull. I literally cannot think of anything someone might say about me that would be worth the expense of tracking it down. "Sometimes he wears a silly hat." "He claims to prefer Elementary to Sherlock." "When he gets proper drunk, he can be a bit of a hugger."

To everyone who's contacted me: Thank you so much, and I'm sorry I can't reply to you all.

To the multitudes who are sending me social media connection requests: If I don't know you in a face-to-face sort of a way, I'll be ignoring you. Sorry. I'm sure most of you are lovely, but I'm equally sure some of you aren't, and I can't tell which. Social media just turned into a minefield for me, so I'm throwing away the rollerblades. I'm sure you understand.

Finally, I would like to say that the news sites that have made "Bloke writes about his lunch" their third or fourth top story, considering that the first two right now are Pakistan and Sydney, should be ashamed of themselves.

Anyway, my next plan is to slag off 1 Direction. What could go wrong?

29 comments:

Sam said...

I'll look forward to the One Direction slag-off. ^_^

Gareth said...

This difficult 2nd album is a bit of a disappointment to be honest. Still a big fan though, no one could have lived up to the first.

Vulpes Vulpes said...

Arf! If a 1D slag-off goes viral, you'll be toast by Christmas!

Anonymous said...

I often think of bands like 1D as the of nutrition. They're only palatable if you're 12 years old. Or, 35, smashed off one's tits, everything else is closed and the only alternative is to consume one's own spleen.

Anonymous said...

I often think of bands like 1D as the "insert well known fast food restaurant" of nutrition. They're only palatable if you're 12 years old. Or, 35, smashed off one's tits, everything else is closed and the only alternative is to consume one's own spleen.

David Hall said...

What did 1 Direction do to your lunch?!

Anonymous said...

Well said. Again.

Enjoy the rest of your life in peace and paella...and thank you for making me laungh and for articulating - so beautifully - some extremely valid points that, as yet, RB has chosen not to answer.

Henry Crun said...

Good grief S2, given the success of your recent blog post I may have to resurrect Grumpy Old Sod's Law. If only to highlight that Russell Brand may be a bit of a twat

Anonymous said...

you are a dick

Anonymous said...

So, Russell Brand has offered to meet you, to be able to apologise, you going to take the offer?

Anonymous said...

i'm not gagging for more what you said was perfect. what pisses me off though is that the fact that it went viral meant russell and his team rustled up that letter which half the papers rare treating a s a proper apology! in fact they print the first sentence without the second e.g. just publishing it;s not niicie to suffer because of actions not done to you." then leaving out the sentence immediately following it"I imagine the disabled people of our country who've been hit with six billion cuts----- feel similarly cheesed off" etc etc throughout. So it looks like a genuine apology and not brand riding on the fact your letter went viral to once more put the spotlight back in him. he sSHOULD stand. He IS a politician and a master at media manipulation.

Anonymous said...

I thought your letter was very funny and beautifully written too. You must be a great company down the pub. I'm only sorry that I dont know you but I'm sure that your family appreciate your wit. I know I do. Have a great Christmas!

JoBrand said...

Btw Elementary is far superior to Sherlock Holmes and Fernandos is not all that (which might explain your thin complexion and hair loss). I bet you and your RBS line manager had a bit of a talk this week? For all of Brands BS you Jo will have to make a decision whether you want to pretend that the Banking Sector is bad for society and whether you want to be building a future in it or outside it. Yes the contract money is good, its hard to say goodbye to that to try and use those skills more altruistically. Having done it myself and made that decision (it was and is still a hard decision) I am happy, a happiness that comes from making decisions for me rather than allowing others to manipulate me into believing Investment Banks add value. They simply don't, I hope you realise that before it's too late.

Best,

JB (from norn iron)

P.S. Have you read Eureka Street, it kind reminds me of you a bit?

JoBrand said...

Dyslexics untie:

For all of Brands BS you Jo will have to make a decision whether you want to pretend that the Banking Sector is GOOD for society and whether you want to be building a future in it or outside it

Anonymous said...

If you don't visit Brand, just think how much it will piss off all the brandy wandy's who would crawl over 2 miles of broken glass just to hear him fart through a window

Farty Penguin said...

I am thankful that there was no queue outside Fernando's today - much as I feared there might be.

My lunch was warm despite you "going viral" and those of us in PP found it beautifully amusing.

( The "wrong building" part aside as that's rather a familiar bit;-) )

If Brand ever makes good on his offer bring him downstairs and we'll back you up but make sure you pay up top else you end up queuing twice... IMHO.

keithpp said...

In a follow up, the final comment from Jo the Banker, or is it now Jo the Celebrity Blogger, was something with which we could all agree:


Finally, I would like to say that the news sites that have made “Bloke writes about his lunch” their third or fourth top story, considering that the first two right now are Pakistan and Sydney, should be ashamed of themselves.

Mainstream media, as usual, focusses on trivia, but in that, Jo the Banker was an unwitting tool, if not an unwitting fool.

Anonymous said...

Every word you write screams how much you want people to think you're cool and funny.

You are not.

You are also not Charlie Brooker, or AA Gill.

What you come across as is an awkward, unfunny attention-seeker.

And maybe if you'd focussed more on the issues than trying to be funny (never going to be your forte, no matter how much your co-workers tell you you're a laugh, whilst not eating lunch with you or hanging out with you outside work) then this wouldn't have been such a waste of everyone's time when it appeared on those news sites.

Also it's clear that you won't meet up with him (even though he replied to your fatuous and facetious letter with a lot more respect and seriousness than it demanded) because you're clearly a "snipe at everyone from the sidelines" kind of person, not interested in having a positive dialogue or in actually making anything better.

Henry Crun said...

Hiding behind anonymity. Very brave. For the record, Russell Brand is merely the left's gobshite du jour. I have no problem with him spouting the bollocking he spouts - free speech and all that. What I will have no truck with are hypocrites. It's easy to be a socialist when you have as much money as Brand does and don't have to live or work alongside the hoi polloi (cf PollyToynbee)

Anonymous said...

Hello, Squander, I think I'm posting as 'Anonymous' - although you might recall me as Edward Lud from Timmy's. I'd post as Edward, but can work out your 'choose an identity' thing and, tbh, it's not my real name.

Anyhoo, wanted to say that I hope not only that your employers haven't made things difficult for you, but that I hope they recognise that in a chap capable of such a post there is more promise than, almost certainly, they have appreciated thus far. Well done, and thank you.

Anonymous said...

"Can't"

Spell, either

Anonymous said...

I am constructing a (very exclusive!) list of people next to
whom I would like to be seated at a dinner party
(an occasion that I usually intensely dislike.)
I have just added your name to my only two
'fantasy dinner party companions': Boris Johnson
and Nigel Farage.

Rick said...

Anon @ 7.05pm.........creepy.

Mark Holland said...

It was a great piece of writing Jo. All those posts from back in the heyday of blogging really honed your (our) chops.

Mostly I was pleased to see you were still around generally, my having retreated from the scene many years back.

Well done for puncturing Brand's bubble. You obviously niggled him.

Mark

Squander Two said...

Oh, hi, Mark, and thanks. I miss your blog.

I don't think the media have twigged how much the real story here for a lot of us is just a big dollop of nostalgia.

Fabre Geffrard said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fabre Geffrard said...

Sqaunder Two have you taken up Russell Brand's offer of buying you a hot Paella to make up for causing yours to go cold? Maybe in a different environment he won't come off as the schoolyard bully you thought him as in the tension-filled confrontation he had with you. Maybe you two can hopefully kiss and make-out I mean make-up after ya'll had a nice sit-down and have a good chat over lunch.

edit: deleted original post for correction of error.

Bussel Rand said...

How wonderful that 'Anonymous' said you're not A.A. Gill. To which I'll add, you're not Jeremy Clarkson, either. Factor in that you're also not 'Anonymous' and know how to spell 'focused' and oh ye gods, can I be your agent? Especially after penning whatever it is you have in mind about whoever the heck this One Direction person is.

andy5759 said...

Julia linked you, liked you too. So did I. This blog is now amongst my 'favourites'. Maybe my visits will be accompanied by thousands of others.