2006 Web Journal Awards

Yes, it’s that time of the year again: when your uncle is drunk on eggnog, the cat’s wearing antlers, and I’m doing my annual round-up of the best in this year’s blogs. Ha ha!

Those of you who have been with me for a while know that this is a yearly tradition, and I don’t mean to brag, but it’s one that’s brought me wild admiration and critical acclaim. So, without further ado, let’s get on with the show!

Best New Phrase:

“Circle-jerking neurons”, by Painsauce. This year there are a few great examples of wordsmithing blah blah blah but I’ll be damned if I can remember them. Let’s face it. There’s only one of us here that is capable of crafting real creative bon mots and that is me. And this phrase, used to describe someone obsessing over a romantic failure in the past, is probably the best of them, but who knows, I’ve crafted so many over the past year that a few diamonds have probably slipped through the cracks.

Best New Blog:

There were a few nominations this year, and those included:

  • Something about some Mediocratic Party, by some Aaron guy
    Look, I don’t know. Is this the blog of a political party or something? These guys, I don’t know what they’re talking about sometimes. It’s complicated, you know? I think I just don’t understand politics, but whatever. That’s no excuse. They should be trying to connect with the common man. High fives for accessible politics, guys.
  • Political Femme-bot, by Sasha
    This was one of those “joke blogs” that I just couldn’t wrap my head around. I mean, sometimes I found myself chuckling at her slavish devotion to the liberal party but on the whole it was a bit too creepy for me. If it wasn’t cleared of content, those guys at the Mediocratic blog could have learned a few things about party loyalty and partisanship, also the sorry state of Brampton Transit.
  • Shesanextremist, by Lisa.
    I don’t know what to say about this one. Am I supposed to give an award to a blog that’s spent one third of its short life trying to sell me CDs? Is that what I stand for, here? Why don’t I create a separate category for “spam blog” and just be done with it?
  • Just Living a Good Life, by The#1TopGunFan.
    T1TGF’s charming snippets of Midwestern American life are poetic and thoughtful, and raise important issues about playing fair in love and life, and just generally trying to “keep your stick on the ice”. T1TGF went through a tough period recently with his girl and his health, and we’re glad to say that while he’s okay now, we were with him every step of the way.

The Winner: Exclamation Mark, Exclamation Mark. In the end it was close, but EE rose above the rest of the pack as it was obviously the best in the bunch. Solid and straight-forward, while still maintaining an appropriate amount of fluidity and mystery.

Best Blog Post:

The nominations:

  • Something eloquent about running and football, by Adeel.
    Do you remember that one, magical post in which budding classical philosopher Adeel briefly married the two disciplines of football and marathon running for one glorious twist in the end zone, and then capped it off with a quote from Aristotle? Yeah, of course you do. That’s every post.
    What can we say about Bone, a fixture on the backyard blog scene for quite some time now? Could we say that his admittedly juvenile posts are reflections of the state of the modern world, and his anger a reaction to our diminishing place in it? Could we say that perhaps, in Bone, we have the illuminating combination of philosopher and street-thug, poet and malcontent? Could we say that he is a modern-day Juvenal, buried beneath a shiny veneer of “street” respectibility? No, we could say none of those things. He’s a dope.
  • Hitler was a good Nazi, by BasicTheology.
    I don’t know what it is about this BasicTheology guy, but he always gets us in the most clever ways, such as his post detailing fifteen ways we can use Hitler’s beliefs in our own lives, before deflating the whole idea by saying that he is probably ignorant and doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Who saw that coming? I sure didn’t! Classic!

The Winner: Something whimsical about the Internet, by me. Leave it to me to pull out a win in a tough category and with a niche genre. But my pioneering work in narrative snippets involving the internet has pushed the genre from niche to the edge of mainstream. It’s only a matter of time before this sort of thing starts popping up on BoingBoing and I’m being interviewed by CNN. Not many people have won Time’s Man of Year two years in a row but I think that in 2007 there’s a good chance that this could be me.

Still Learning

Coloured version?! What coloured version? Okay the truth is that it looks great in real life (except for the last panel which I am debating) but either I don’t know how to scan or I suck at picking scannable colours or my stuff is only okay until you compress everything. I should have done what I had planned to do, which was going to be a much bolder, broader, Canadian Creation Myth generation one-type colouring job but I didn’t and I regret it!

Another Post is Below


An early experiment with colour. I’ve got this week’s comic all drawn up but I’m going to watercolour that sucker later tonight. It’ll be less typical than this… this week I drew the comic keeping paint in mind. To some extent I did that with last week’s too but I love the starkness of it so it’ll probably be a while before I get around to adding colour.

I also posted late last night, if you’re not too busy.

Graffiti is Art

All of these are stolen from Flicker.

I don’t know how anyone can say that graffiti isn’t art. It’s definitely interested in colour and line, it’s definitely a form of expression – its proliferation seems to suggest that it stems from sort of deep human need to express oneself, to leave a mark on a world which otherwise might seem empty and grey. To change something removed and cold, for good or bad, with your own hands. Even in its most basic forms, it’s still a response. You’re still saying something, you’re still speaking and hoping to be heard.

I used to keep a link (on a computer with is now dead and choked with viruses) to translations of roman graffiti found on the walls of the buildings in pompeii. This isn’t it, but it’s got some great examples that are just as interesting. Obviously these are a little different than the pictures I posted above, but you can’t deny our historic need to carve out little places for ourselves on public walls.