See, back last week when I posted about my most recent podcast interview (My Podcast Interview at Paleo Weekly: My Evil Plot, Revealed), I didn’t really reveal the whole Evil Plot in that podcast. That was just to make you think I did so you’d consider listening.
Sure, I spent a lot of time explaining the evils of letting comments post unmoderated and why I’d do such a thing, when so many out there do moderate comments before they post. I spoke of my debauchery and laziness in letting bullshit, stupidity and false information remain in the comments for all to see, including newbies. Like a cheap whore, I reveled in the self-depricating glory of receiving comments critical of me and my style. And like some sociopath, I patted myself on the back for treating some select commenters like shit, for all to see: my wild-eyed immaturity.
But I stopped short of fully laying out why, exactly, I go to such lengths to make myself look bad, out of control, a loose cannon and, as some claim, to make the paleo / primal community look bad by extension, given the high popularity of my blog.
So, now, finally I shall reveal the end game of what it’s all about. Perhaps the best way to explain it is via one of the many emails I get each week. This one, from Teresa:
Dear Mr. Nikoley,
After reading your latest and very inspiring blog post about your MovNat experience, I had to write to thank you for all the good you have done for me and my family. I am a 33 year old mother of two young sons, and I found your site some time last year when I was doing a search for Soft Star Shoes for my then 4 year old. It was serendipity, a chance hit on Google after you reviewed the Soft Star RunAmocs. But what else I read on your site intrigued me. Over the next several months, I came back a few times, confounded by the eating and exercise routine that seemed so darn sensible, so intuitive and natural that I couldn’t accept it outright at first. (I’m not suspicious by nature, but I guess lifelong habits sometimes hold fast, even in the face of good sense that says otherwise. But finally, there was no arguing with your results.)
In January, I made it my goal to learn how to cook meat. When the last of the flours in the house were used up, I didn’t replace them. Same with the beans and rice. I’ve had a few stutter steps, but I’m confident now in my Paleo meal planning, and I’ve read a few books to get really solid on the whys. It’s amazing. The immediate perceptible benefits have been listed all over the web, so I won’t repeat them, but suffice to say that I can live the rest of my life like this and be really, really satisfied with it.
I’m so grateful that you put so much good information out there for others to stumble upon. I look at my 5 year old and my 2 year old, and I’m glad that their bodies will be growing to their full human potential. I’m grateful for the humility and humor that makes your site so accessible, and for the depth of thought and research that makes your posts such treasures.
I didn’t intend to gush, but I did intend to thank you profusely.
So again, thanks.
So there you have it. Pretty sad, isn’t it? Now I suppose I could have written posts about the 7, 8, 9, or 10 Things You Can Do For X, and she’d have probably blown right on by. Instead of the anarchist disaster area that are many of my posts and comment threads, I could have posted uplifting drivel and shut down comments altogether — or moderated with a heavy hand — so that I and all my readers could attend The Church of Paleo with each post; cloistered, reveling in ignorant bliss — with never a discouraging or challenging word.
Of course, by consequential extension, I would never, ever get a comment like this:
…Or one like this from the same "Primal Professor," in reference to a live debate with a vegan.
But not getting comments like that would be far too big of a price to pay. And if you want to know what I think of comments like that, beyond my pure and primal love of getting them, It’s that I wonder who this anonymous "Professor" is, and what he or she is doing that might result in him or her getting such a letter from someone, anyone, ever in his or her life? Or does his or her eminent, ivrory-towerness have any Real Results of others to show?
…One writer, columnist and blogger I follow on Twtitter — and who follows me as well — is Amy Alkon, Advice Goddess. She had a post up this morning that while from a political angle, has broader implications.
I often suspect that the people who complain the most bitterly about [cuts in social services] do only that — do nothing to try to help people themselves.
I added those brackets and you can pretty much insert anything you want. See? Broader implications.
It reminded me of back when I used to debate on the old USENET in the mid-90s, often about politics, culture, social policy and whatnot. One day, some guy blew through there and dropped a question I have never forgotten:
Is your desire to help people so great as to actually help them, or only so great as to force others to do so?
But what do I know? He’s the "Paleo Professor."
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