I know I’m too maudlin for this to be a smart idea. I’m shitfaced on onion pakora and dal rice from Udupi Palace and of course I had to top it off with a full blue-glass mug of Red Rose. This is as close to drunk as I get.

I’ve been dicking around with my RSS feeds all night but it the back of my mind I was trying to figure out ways to make les Tea Makers better. I feel like I have to add “Yeah, I worry about that.” I do, though.

I self-shitcanned months ago but I came back. Whoever made the comment that I’m better now that I’m not doing it as much was right. Though I wrote a lot more of my other stuff when I was also writing Tea Makers most days. I can barely get a book proposal out the door now.

Me in an electronic-mail message: “I want to improve TM somehow. I’m not really clear how. The post-lockout period has been like all unhappy families – unhappy in different ways.”

Part of the response: “Their barbs are always the same.”

Well, yeah.

We’ve changed. I keep telling you this because I think it’s true and important and I think some of you are just living in the past. We – yes, we – survived the lockout. We got through the lockout. It’s well in the past. The Tea Makers was a lifesaver during that era and, years before it ever occurred to me to write for it, I was checking the damned thing three times a day. We don’t live there anymore. The Tea Makers will not be the same everywhere or, to use the old sf term, “everywhen.”

We’ve got only a couple of writers and we are doing what we can. Even my captioning piece the other day is structurally indistinguishable from a vintage Ouimet critique from ’06. We can handle it if you think we’ve faceplanted on our new posts, but I don’t know what it’s going to take to get you to stop comparing us to the good old days, the salad days, the halcyon days.

CBC Television is just a TV station now and not a lot is going on that’s radically different from post-lockout. CBC Radio (anglo) is a couple of podcasts as far as a lot of listeners are concerned. The Web site is a success in many ways other than money. What this means is nobody’s picketing Fort Dork and we’ve got only so much matériel to work with.

I know I’m being maudlin but I’m sorry if we – yes, we – are letting you down. But we aren’t going to pack it in no matter how mean you people feel like being. Anyway, I tried that once already.

And seriously, if you want to make it better, you can. I – yes, I – warmly welcome any submissions and guest posts. But they happen less often than Christmas.


  1. Fake Ouimet
    Posted February 6, 2009 at 4:09 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I wish you people would stop saying I barely ever “participated” back in the day. I’ve reread most of the archives (it would have been all the archives had Blogger not borked) and I wrote a lot of comments.

  2. Allan
    Posted February 6, 2009 at 3:32 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    So … I’m … doing it … for both of us?
    Pleasure to be of service.

  3. Anonymous
    Posted February 6, 2009 at 2:23 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    See you later, boys. It has been kinda fun.

    I leave you with these choice lyrics from one of Bo Diddley’s famous ‘Say Man’ songs.

    BO: I can do what you doing!
    JEROME: So how come you ain’t doing it?
    BO:I got you doing it for me!

  4. Allan
    Posted February 6, 2009 at 2:04 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    And it does, and it is.
    She just got off Gmail with me.

    At least here we see a comment that has more to say than just admonishing joe.
    I see the phrases “a showcase of what we need” and “info from someone on the INSIDE”.
    What’s more inside than the official blog elsewhere?
    A lot of people would say that’s all that’s needed, anything else is inappropriate.
    I assume you do not share that view.
    Others imply that they would be delighted if we sprinkled in the odd mention of who’s banging who, and ridiculed everyone from interns to the board room. Name names. Accuse people of misdeeds based on nothing more than guesses. Throw all caution and decency out the window, and disguise ourselves to remain untouchable.
    Feel free to start that blog. I’ll read it.
    But I won’t applaud.

    I don’t know why joe ventured into this, really. Whatever his motive, it’s not that important to me. He used to hardly ever participate, unless you brought up Lynn Russell.
    I remember he defended my right to my views when Maffin threatened to sue. And I respected that, even though joe never seems to agree with me. Or I, rarely, with him.

    It would seem to me, that all of this is an opportunity for those who are inspired to contribute to dialogue and to try to have some fun. Serious fun. And can take it much further than I or even Ouimet could do.
    Ask not what Tea Makers can do for you, but what you …
    By all means, take it away.
    If there were no Stern or Daily show, I’d feel compelled to push for it, but they do exist, along with numerous copy-cats, so I can go back to sleep or sit back and enjoy their work.
    If there were someone who could do TM better than joe or I, and wanted to, there’s nothing preventing them. I’d love to see it. But obviously that’s not happening.
    you’re either part of the problem at Tea Makers, or you’re part of the …

    Tea Makers is still presented by Ouimet. But more importantly, it’s still alive.
    And remains so despite the nattering nabobs of negativity.
    And negative or positive comments are not the goal or criteria or reason for it’s existence.
    No one’s trying to be a leader of public opinion, or score points with the CBC.
    That’s an easy road to take, and plenty of others do.

  5. Fake Ouimet
    Posted February 6, 2009 at 11:42 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Shorter, less boring version

    We are trying really hard to make Tea Makers better. There isn’t a crisis at the Corpse and we don’t have the lockout as a unifying force. Please live in the present and help us out by filling in the gaps.

  6. Broken Record
    Posted February 6, 2009 at 7:06 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    FO, keep the lockout out of this. Having not been locked in OR locked out during that time, you can’t lay claim to using that to justify your own mixed feelings on taking over the blog.

    Face it, both you and Allan became most vocal on TM around 2006. Post lockout.

    * * *

    Can I infer a couple things here [in square brackets]:

    Me in an electronic-mail message [TO OUIMET]: I want to improve TM somehow. I’m not really clear how. The post-lockout period has been like all unhappy families †unhappy in different ways.’

    Part of the response[FROM OUIMET]: ‘Their barbs are always the same.'[BECAUSE THEY STILL WORK AT CBC]

    * * *

    As for the example post you link to, it’s a perfect showcase of what dialogue we all need (fans, bloggers both gagged and non-gagged, managers, execs, drones, survivors and haters) to go FORWARD in dicsussions about the FUTURE of CBC, rather than be mired in nostalgic lockout-esque bitching and moaning:

    1. It presents an argument about some aspect of operations, using info from someone on the INSIDE, but written in a way where the lay reader doesn’t need any tech savvy or complex back history to understand the point

    2. It draws some misinformed InsidetheCBC style comments, that display a half-assed understanding of the way things got done in new media at that time.

    Just because Blake Crosby does guest blogging, doesn’t mean he’s the go-to guy who can miraculously fix the entire site.

    Nor can (sheesh) Tod Maffin save the CBC by being a freelance lockoutblog aggregator turned freelance (yet muzzled) official mouthpiece.

    3. It gets a few shouts out from former employees who have a pretty well reasoned (albeit bitter) take on what the problems are, and they throw in their 2 cents.

    4. Some anonymi chime in with a few ideas on what could be fixed in regard to the controversy. Some have seen it firsthand ‘cos they work there, others just have some good ideas

    5. It ultimately ends with some CBCwatch style douche taking a ‘prose dump’, thinking he can make CBCers feel bad by throwing around the word ‘socialism’ or doomsaying about layoffs

    What more can you ask for from Teamakers?

    A Teamkers whose masthead still says presented by A. Ouimet.

  7. Anonymous
    Posted February 6, 2009 at 4:06 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    can you write a shorter, less boring version of that post?

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