Woody's Ward (Special Edition): "Welp, see ya later!"
There’s a special folder in my inbox where I keep emails that carry some sort of significance in one way or another. Some of them are just financial documents that I assume will be vital at one point or another, while others have a more personal and sentimental value to me. It’s a long ways away from the quaint charm of a shoebox full of old letters, but in this digital age a lot of things have become impersonal.
In this digital folder lies an email that came originally came from a stranger, but wound up coming from a friend. About once a week – sometimes more and sometimes less – I get the opportunity to write about almost anything my heart is content with. Typically it ties into the University of Tennessee or in larger part the SEC, but occasionally a wandering mind leads me in other directions.
There’s little planning involved for the most part. It’s usually a free-flowing thought that streams from my brain to the keyboard and into the cyber world without any restrictor plate. The language often has to be cleaned up and I often have to pause to add appropriate punctuation (as my thoughts exist in run-on sentences), in other words it’s filtered but there’s still pulp.
It’s a departure from coverage that I believe normally does a solid job of remaining relatively impartial. Granted, there’s a distinctively orange slant, but it’s a Tennessee blog on the “FanVsFan” network. I can self-deprecate with the best of them, but if you came to a website called KnoxVegasVols.com expecting complete neutrality I’d be inclined to question your selected mode of transportation to school. I’m guessing it had more than three rows of seats but less than ten.
Speaking in generalities, we do a decent job of avoiding full-blown sunshine pumping. However, once a week, there’s this… whatever it is.
The Internet is often an unsavory community. Yesterday, I sat not-so-idly-by as my Twitter timeline blew up and a certain Bashville Blogger (compliments to @mac_b_from_tn on the moniker) boastfully claimed responsibility for exposing the identity of a man who placed his testicles on another man’s head. This blogger will remain nameless like the antagonist of a J.K. Rowling novel, but I think I’ve done a sufficient job of not-so-subtly giving you the gist.
The point is, there aren’t very many good people on the interwebs, or maybe I should say, there aren’t very many easily identifiable good people. KVV editor-in-chief Joel Barker is undoubtedly one of them.
Inside that folder, lies an email I saved from last March that serves as a memento to the beginnings of this very column which holds a place very near and dear. Obviously, these columns have meant a lot more to me than they have to most of you, but I appreciate having y’all bear with me as I cultivated my own style.
Validation is HUGE for any young writer and having Joel initially approach me to write for KVV and then to start this column indulged the narcissistic side of me that exists in every writer. So as I move on to terrorize the rest of the World Wide Web with my unwarranted opinions, I’d like to thank Joel and everyone involved with KVV and FVF for their support and encouragement.
Thanks to them, I’ve been hired to cover the SEC for RantSports.com, where I’ll presumably be called an idiot by 12 fanbases simultaneously (soon to be 14 thanks to the aggressive frontiersman that lies within SEC commissioner Mike Slive). I’m proud to have been a part of it all for the last 13 months. I’ve had the chance to rub shoulders with athletes, coaches, and journalists who I’ve admired for quite some time, none of which would have been possible without KVV.
This isn’t my last article for KVV, as I’ll be here through National Signing Day. But since the ink is dry, I figured now is as good a time as any to say my thank you’s. So thank you. It’s been a wild ride.