2013 HOUSEKEEPING UPDATE

Another year is in the books and I want to take a moment to address some new developments in the corporate boardroom of Gin and Tacos, Inc. (a subsidiary of Nordyne Defense Dynamics). I'll resume throwing content at you tomorrow, starting with annually beloved Ginandtacos.com CotY award presentation.

Our crack team of product development specialists would like to make you aware of several things.

1. If you haven't already, follow G&T on the ol' Facebox. I am investigating adding a Twitter account. The benefits are obvious to me, but the character limit bugs the hell out of me and I'm not sure I need another online time-suck. We shall see.

Gin and Tacos | Promote Your Page Too

2. I need to gauge the level of potential interest in podcasts. I hate podcasting in the sense that they're usually done on a schedule (i.e., weekly) irrespective of whether the host has anything interesting to talk about. Often they do not, and podcasts devolve into painfully self-indulgent and boring exercises in ad-libbing into a microphone for extended time periods. What I'd like to do is an infrequent series of podcasts based around a guest or guests in a discussion/interview format. The goal will be simply to find interesting people to talk to about a wide range of issues. Rather than a chance to make you listen to Ed flap his gums for 30 minutes, I'm looking at it more as a potential way to introduce you to some interesting people, topics, and issues. If I don't have a guest to talk to or something interesting to say, there will be no podcasts until I do. They would be available for free, of course.

3. Speaking of, even though traffic has increased consistently over the years the site remains and will remain free of advertisements. If you have to ask why, you must be new. Sticking to that principle has a downside that becomes apparent in late December when the annual hosting bill arrives. So here is where I give you a number of options.

You can do nothing and continue to enjoy the site for free. This is called "free riding", and it's an entirely rational behavior. I have done (for ten years!!) and will continue to do this every day whether I make a million bucks, nothing at all, or I have to pay out of pocket for the privilege.

You can use this tip jar / donation link to contribute an amount of your choosing to defray the costs of this site. If you happen to be saddled with extra cash and feel like donating fifty bucks, I will be extremely grateful. However, if donating fifty cents (or zero cents) is more in line with your current budget, my gratitude will be no less. Your tips and contributions are (obviously) voluntary but greatly appreciated.






4. Merchandise. Coffee mugs. I know you want mugs and whatnot. Here's the thing: I'm a perfectionist when it comes to this sort of thing, which is both annoying and counterproductive. I could just slap the background image on a white surface and call it a day. I'd rather offer you something more creative and appealing than that. So the tale of the Gin and Tacos Coffee Mug will be like Shellac's Terraform album, which was recorded and then sat unreleased for almost three years because the band couldn't get the cover art and packaging done to their liking. I've had a few design folks take a whack at it and I haven't seen anything I like yet. When I get something that I feel is good enough to charge money for, you'll be the first to know.

5. I want to start doing a Link of the Day post in the afternoons; a quick, random item of interest, possibly along a weekly or monthly theme. The longer, ranty-style posts you're used to will continue to appear every night at midnight.

6. Thank you all for making the site more interesting than it would be otherwise with your comments and contributions. Even though I've progressed from zero to one to fifty-plus comments per post, I still read every single one. If you can take the time to say something, I can make the time to listen.

Onward.

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48 Responses to “2013 HOUSEKEEPING UPDATE”

  1. Daniel Harper Says:

    Regular reader, first time commenter. Would definitely be interested in a podcast, ESPECIALLY on the terms you listed. I'd rather get a really interesting conversation every six months than a sputtering bunch of gibberish every week.

    On the occasion of my first comment, I'd give you a donation, but I'm a(n) (adult) student, and furthermore just got married and went on the honeymoon, so I'm (very) broke.

    Excellent blog, thanks for the content, yadda yadda.

  2. J. Dryden Says:

    Random notes:

    OK, donation made. (Nevermind this Matthew 6:6 bullshit–if nobody knows you did good stuff, it doesn't count.)

    So long as your coffee mug is the equivalent of Terraform, and not of Chinese Democracy, I'm sure I don't mind the wait.

    Podcasts are something that I've no doubt you'd do well at, and produced on the ad hoc basis you suggest, are definitely something I'd listen to. (Suggestion: Invite some of your more…distinctive commenters to appear. I think we're all dying to know what c u n d gulag and bb in ga sound like, after all this time of supplying them with voices drawn from their Warner Bros. analogues.)

    Can't wait for the CotY–in an election year, there are always so many wonderfully deserving candidates. Though wasn't there a foofooraw over the name of the award last year–anti-gay, or some such concern? Personally, I couldn't be less offended, but I'd hate to see the importance of the award be lost amid irrelevant controversy and the showboating it attracts. (Although I still think the DGA should have kept D.W. Griffith's name on its top honor, so I might not be the best barometer for interpersonal sensitivity and respect.)

    Been a hell of a year for you and for many of us–well done, and onward/upward.

  3. _allisonc Says:

    Thank you for the prompt. I've read you and never even realized you had a tip jar (google reader).

    I would love you to be on twitter.
    Love.

    @_allisonc

  4. xynzee Says:

    Thanks for your effort.

    Often thanks are like wetting yourself in a dark suit. Whilst it may give you a warm, wet feeling, no one will notice, and it really doesn't do much in the end.

    So have a few shekels, you've earned them.

  5. Ed W. Says:

    May you never have to whore yourself out to Google ads or whatever the kids are using these days. As a donor at the "Benefactor" level, I would like the tote bag and the water bottle. Wait, what?!

    As far as podcasts, I am not interested. Nothing personal–I just don't get into podcasts. I don't use the twitter either, but that might be a good place for "Latvian" jokes, instead of Facebook. Also (and at this point I feel like I'm kinda being a killjoy, but I'm sure you'd prefer honesty), as much as I like the site background, I'm not buying a coffee mug or mousepad or t-shirt or whatever. I've got enough stuff already, so it's just straight cash from me.

  6. Kyle Says:

    I will be sending over a few bucks.

    I am not a podcast listener but I would change that if you were to do something. Your Facebook posts are usually the only interesting thing that I have to read there.

    I'm not a Twitter fan and would worry that it would take away from the Facebook hilarity. Perhaps have your tweets posted to your FB? This becomes a little annoying if you're a prolific tweeter though.

    Thanks again for the entertainment.

  7. Daniel Says:

    I'm all for listening to a new podcast. I generally listen to a handful of podcasts every week, but some hosts tend to regurgitate the same shit over and over again. There are a lot of good ones out there, but it would be nice to hear something new once in a while.

    Twitter is hit or miss. The character limit is dumb. Many of the Twitter lunatics tend to be obsessed with following and whatnot. I would prefer to read your daily musings on society and life on the Facebox, but I suppose I could meander over to the Twitter now and then if you feel the inclination to post your wit and reparte over there.

  8. LK Says:

    FB/Twitter: I don't do FB, almost out of principle, and I know I'm missing on a lot of good content from you. That said, I appreciate my Twitter sources much better when they only tweet once in a while, but with worthy comments. The "new blog post" type tweets are redundant IMO, but there's surely a lot of concise content you couldn't cover the blog with, and would fit on Twitter. Do an exercise: for a week or so, write down to yourself "tweet ideas" when you get them, and retrospect it over the weekend.

    Podcasts: Fully agree with the schedule, not so sure about the length. There are a few "sweet spots" it seems, for podcast length. There's the 4~6 minute "skit size", the 15~20 minute "extended thought" and the 45~60 minute "full program". All this of course is not scientific at any rate, but this is what my ears tell me- when I get a 30 minute episode I speed it up by 1.5~2 more often than I would shorter ones. I'd also second J. Dryden's suggestion to bring in some of the commenters for, ehm, commenting.

    Thanks for making my 2012 more interesting and thought-provoking, and here's to much more of that in 2013.

    L.

  9. Middle Seaman Says:

    Thanks a lot. Other sites I read regularly, about 3 or 4, also ask for donation and I am not rich enough to be a free loader. Personally, podcasts are not my favorite medium of communication. The same goes for posts that take more than 3 minutes to read.

    Other than that, yours is the oasis of the middle of the night and thus serves as a good read and a push to respond briefly and a relaxation technique.

    Be well and happy new year.

  10. greatestwirefan Says:

    Love your site and will definitely contribute what I can. Keep up the good work, you're truly a treasure.

  11. c u n d gulag Says:

    Ed,
    Sadly, still jobless for over 2 1/2 years now, approaching 55, and living again with my Mom (and yes, I had some Cheeto's yesterday, for the first time in ages, while I was watching some Football), I have to continue to free-ride/free-load
    As much as I'd like to, and feel the need to, I just can't contribute right now. Our budget's kinda tight, since my Pop passed away last year, my unemployment ran out, she lost her own SS money, and we have to live off of her SS Survivor's benefits.
    My apologies…

    I don't 'tweet," nor do I follow other people's tweets – though, if you were to do so, Ed, I might start.

    A podcast sounds interesting. But I always say that – and then almost never listen to one. I'm more of reader, than I am a viewer or listener.
    Having said that, whether I listen to it or not, I agree – better not to have one, until or unless you have something really great to say, or have someone interesting on.
    I imagine it takes a while to craft your wonderful posts, since it takes me a bit of thought to write my comments. A podcast is a whole different ballgame.
    And, J. Dryden, speaking only for myself, as to your suggestion of me being on one – I just ain't that interesting – sorry to say. Other commenter's mileage my vary, as to whether or not they'd care to appear. Plus, I was an actor for years, so I can do a number of accents, and I can sound pretty much any way I choose to that day. But, that still doesn't mean I'd have anything interesting to say, regardless of the accent.

    Oh, and Ed, may I suggest somthing, on top of NPF, maybe you could add a SS – Sports Sunday?
    Yeah, I know – easy for a free-rider/free-loader to say…

    Best wishes to all, in the New Year!

  12. Trapclap Says:

    I would contribute to the cause, but I'm moving to another state soon. The only real suggestion I'd make is that you find a clear, consistent way to interact with your audience. This can sometimes turn content makers into self-aggrandizing assholes, but I think your work would benefit from it.

    Good luck.

  13. anon Says:

    I WANT the background image on a white surface coffee mug.

  14. Seth Says:

    I find the occasional FB post amusing or whatnot. As for Twitter/Podcasts/whatever-other-flavor, I'd encourage it only to the extent that it doesn't distract from the blog; this is the guts of G&T IMO, and I'd hate to see it get lost in a haze of other stuff–especially because as I've learned being in social networks and doing two blogs, it gets exponentially harder to keep up with the conversations that are happening in multiple places.

  15. anotherbozo Says:

    As I said before, if you'd provide a P.O. address–even a temporary one—I could send cash. I can sneak cash out of the house but the wife will give me hell if I use our credit card for my favorite blog. We're not poor but she's convinced I'm a money sieve and I can't stand the by-the-numbers lecture.

    Maybe there are a few others who'd like to support the site as surreptitiously as they read it.

  16. sluggo Says:

    Podcast??!!! YES!!!

    I love extended interviews! Just make them really diverse, somebody talking from a different perspective and a different background. I know you can write, but can you get people to really open up? It is different skill set.

    No point/counterpoint stuff, that jumped the shark nearly forty years ago with "Jane, you ignorant slut'.

  17. Shane Says:

    Are donations made in gin/beer at annual conferences still an acceptable way to contribute and offer gratitude for content?

  18. Misterben Says:

    Donation made (less than I'd like, but I am also moving out of state and have gigantic bills to pay). Thank you for all your efforts to keep us (I'm sorry) infotained.

    I don't see a lot of value in Twitter, myself, but I think it's something you probably ought to consider. "Everyone else is doing it", after all.

    The idea of a G&T podcast is intriguing. My favorites all fall into the 15-20 minute bracket – just long enough to listen to while I walk to the store, not so long that I have to set aside "time" for them. What I really like about the podcast idea is that you could use them to expand on what you say on the site – or vice versa.

    Anyway, thank you again for all your hard work.

  19. Aaron Weber Says:

    I'm not normally a podcast listener, but I'd love to hear/see some of your standup bits.

  20. Rikki Says:

    What, no Pinterest?

  21. RosiesDad Says:

    And thank you for your efforts, Ed. The Interwebs are more interesting because you are here.

    I listen to podcasts all the time (NPR, Slate–politics and sports, This American Life, Radiolab, etc.) so if you decide to try it, I will check it out.

    And a Happy New Year to you. May your pursuits bring you a sense of fulfillment, if not prosperity. (Although prosperity would be good, too.)

  22. John Magnum Says:

    Hey Ed,

    Love the site. The podcast you describe is extremely interesting to me. I don't usually listen to podcasts, but I'd listen to that,

    -John

  23. Joe A Says:

    Ed, I've been reading for years and have always enjoyed your take on things. Happy to donate.

  24. Frank Says:

    will be sending some dollars not fiddy but more than one.

    Do the mugs, one Gin and taco's current logo as is. And then figure out a couple more. Even if it's just an awesome quote that is unique to you. I buy coffee mugs and willing to pay a decent premium for good/funny/weird ones.

  25. Brian Says:

    Donated. GnT is one of the little things that makes the thought of tomorrow brighter.

  26. mothra Says:

    I still advocate for a magnet. Possibly with whatever design ends up on a mug. Don't need a mug, but delight in magnets.

    Sadly, I understand I miss some really fun stuff on Facebook. I wish there was a backdoor into Facebook wherein people who aren't on Facebook could access Facebook accounts they were interested in. I am noticing that some businesses are relying on Facebook (Like us on Facebook!) to advertise and it bums me out.

    Twitter? Well, I am on Twitter in name only. But don't pay any attention, nor do I post. I don't really get it. Maybe it's to keep from talking to yourself in public? I'm old enough that I just don't care if someone hears me comment on something out loud in public. Like why the goddamn grocery store WAS OUT OF SUGAR the week before Christmas. I digress. Twit or not, I'll still like you, Ed. But not on Facebook.

    Podcast? Sounds like it could be fun–and, in the absence of a comedy club where you live, it might provide the outlet your stand-up does. Although here's an idea: How about persuading a venue in your town to start hosting a comedy night. Yes, it could be godawful. But it could be nice and absurd, too. One never knows.

  27. Josh Says:

    Damn you for creating content worth paying for.

  28. acer Says:

    Your perfectionistic tendencies are probably why I still check G&T every day after four years. No online blend of politics, arcane trivia, and dick jokes maintains the same bar for quality.

    Considering your newly acquired cabin fever, I would encourage you to give podcasting a whirl. It would be a good outlet for your comedic performance skills. I can think of a half-dozen regular commenters offhand (Dryden, bb, Gulag, and others) that could make good foils.

    It might suck for awhile and might turf out completely, but you've earned the privilege of line-extending the brand.

  29. JohnR Says:

    "..painfully self-indulgent and boring exercises in ad-libbing into a microphone.."
    You say that like that isn't fun to watch! Nobody likes watching agonized self-destruction on video more than I, so let's get cracking here!
    Anyway, I find your ideas intriguing and I'd like to subscribe to your podcast…
    Seriously, let me join the chorus of "give it a tilt-a-whirl". If nothing else, it will remind me that it's been far too long since I chipped in my couch-cushion findings.
    Also, too, w/ ref to the idea of a G&T coffee mug, in the spirit of AOL, I'd like to say "Me, too!" Although in a spot like this a magnet will do[/BBunny]
    Sorry about not kicking in a few bucks; I realize that I've been absent-mindedly sticking all of it (what little there is) over at Thers' place instead of half here and half there. I'll make up for it this year by sending a bit your way every time he writes something good, so you should do all right. (Just don't tell him about it.)
    Also, too, @CUND; I'm very sorry to hear how tight things are right now – I'm in a similar boat except that at the moment I'm gainfully employed (and thus have plenty of time to comment on blogs). I know you didn't mean it that way, but if you shoot me a note @ jcrobinatjhmidotedu, I'd be more than happy to rob Peter (or, in this case, Ed) to pay Paul (or in this case CUND). Just don't tell Ed – I already promised him Thers' share! Seriously, all us blood-sucking capitalists have to hang together, and I find your commentary alone the moral equivalent of a better-than-average blog. A McDonald's $ menu hamburger on me once in a while is little enough in return (and it's the least I can do, and I mean that most sincerely!)

  30. Fan Says:

    Podcasts – cool.

    Merchandise – not as cool.

  31. Daniel Says:

    Hey, you can interview Henry Rollins.

  32. Nick Says:

    1. I enjoy your Facebookery; I don't use Twitter much so I can't speak to that.

    2. I don't listen to many podcasts for precisely the reasons you mention, but an interesting half-hour every now and then would grab my attention.

    3. I'll donate later this month when I'm not selling plasma for beer money, and merch would be delightful

  33. JB in Walla Walla Says:

    Donation made. I must confess that I routinely sneak a peak at the topic of the day (just the topic, mind you) at night so that I will have restful sleep knowing that waking up in the morning will be worthwhile.

  34. E* Says:

    I agree with Mothra about accessing Facebook via a back door. I know I'm missing out on your posts, but since my Facebook exit, I'm also missing out on the posts of approximately 299 complete morons, so I guess it's a win overall.

    @c u n d gulag -I'm throwing in a couple of extra dollars for your sake.

    Mugs, definitely. Podcasts, most definitely. Twitter, why bother?

  35. vegymper Says:

    No time for Twitter, scarcely looking at my FB, but longtime reader. Pleaaaaaseee, why not a nice decent sized poster, e.g. 10" x 16"?

  36. AG Says:

    Ed, regular reader (via Google Reader) here. Been contributing to your blog the last couple of years. Tried to contribute last week but the Donate button did not appear to work. I just now tried again via the Donate button (tip jar) link on bullet point 3, and it worked! Thanks for your excellent posts especially the long-form ones. –ag

  37. Totoro Says:

    Hi Ed,

    How about a more subtle approach on the mug? G&T, black letters on white bg, if you know what it means, good on ya, otherwise, a conversation starter.

  38. AK Says:

    I'd assume a mug that just said "G&T" on it was for your morning gin and tonic.

    Podcasts are intriguing, but they're also almost always too long.

  39. Suttree Says:

    Ed- I truly appreciate the amount of work that you do on this blog throughout the year. I unfortunately am a starving artist/drunkard. If you had a mug to sell I would surely purchase it to pour my hobo wine, cheap vodka ( sorry no gin), strained liquor from the bar mat in. Please, please mugs!

  40. Peggy Says:

    I would take podcasts for a whirl. Cameron would love them, I bet.

    Comedy podcasts too, maybe?

    And I'm only donating money if you get c u n d to do 60 minutes of accents on the first episode of the podcast.

    No, wait…

  41. warmbowski Says:

    Ed. Consider this in the place of twitter and a podcast (I tried, but never got on the podcast bandwagon). If you haven't toyed with the Google Plus product, take it for a test drive. It's kind of more similar to twitter, but with a facebook like stream, better control of who sees your posts, and no character limit in said posts. Also, with a Google Plus account you could host a weekly "hangout". It's multi-person video conferencing (you and up to 9 other pretty faces) that you can live-stream, and record for playback on Youtube, and embed in your blog posts. As with all google products, you trade what private info in lieu of money for the product (and possibly part of your soul goes to help keep Eric Schmidt's relatively youthful appearance intact).

  42. Sean Says:

    I have greatly appreciated the moments of clarity and dark humor I have found here, please enjoy my donation.

  43. Jane Says:

    Hi Ed,

    You're expanding your connection to your gang here while friends in the flesh haven't found you yet in your new city. Thanks.

    I don't do Facebook or Twitter. I'd rather think about something for a good length of time than get distracted. I listen to long podcasts/ YouTube /iTunes U all the time.

    I don't care about regularity in broadcasts; I'd much rather listen when you have something you've thought through to say, whenever that is.

    Here in the north of Sweden the milky way is clear and bright. Sooo many stars. My dog has suuuch a terrible case of the runs. I'm standing outside in the cold in insufficient clothing and I think I'll give up and consider it morning.

  44. acer Says:

    @warmbowski:

    I love Google+, too!

    Not sure why it hasn't really caught on.

    I blame Facebook, the internet's Nixon Administration.

  45. Dan Says:

    Hi Ed,

    I donated $10 toward the cause. I've decided that the content I really enjoy should warrant a financial contribution from me. So, Gin and Tacos, Matt Bors and Matt Inman's work toward creating a Tesla museum are all things I've been proud and happy to financially support recently.

    I'm kinda meh about Twitter. I know a bunch of people who are on it and it seems mostly to be used as an alternative to sending text messages, but letting a bunch of other people view your text message. I just like coming to the site everyday to get my daily dose of rant. Let's just say I prefer to kick it old school. Keep on doing what you're doing. Cheers.

  46. jmh Says:

    I don't usually comment, but I wanted to throw my two cents in:

    There seems to be a lot of support for the podcast, and for featuring some of your comedy on it, which I'm all on-board for. What if, during the periods of time in between the longer, interview-style episodes, you played short clips from your comedy shows? Even something as small as five minutes. I'm an avid listener of "Radiolab", and I know I get really antsy when it takes them 3+ months to upload new episodes.

    With Twitter, as long as it's mostly the absurdist all-caps fuckery that you delighted us with all through election, and Latvian jokes, sign me up. That shit's hilarious.

    Last thing: you mentioned you'd be in the Chicago area for a festival this summer. As a Chicago resident, I'm waiting with bated breath for you to provide a few more details re: that show. I can guarantee you at least two people in that audience.

  47. dcj Says:

    Kicked in $20. Enjoy your perspective, glad to support. I will wait patiently for the perfect T-shirt design. I will wear it when I visit my parents and my sister's family in Conyers GA. They are all ardent believers in New Republican Jesus. I believe I will test my courage by wearing it when my father and I hit the gun range.

    As I now live in Aurora IL, I too look forward to details of the Chicago show.

  48. oiojes Says:

    Been reading you for some years now.

    Not terribly interested in a podcast. There are precious few moments I would use it. I'm very interested in merchandise– as far as I'm concerned a mug with just the background wrapped around it would be JUST FUCKING GREAT! I'm sure other things would also be nice.