Published: June 6, 2012
A couple-few weeks ago I announced a contest for people to become Editor-In-Chief of your Baltimore City Paper, or hey, better yet, about how I, me, the writer of the “Mr. Wrong” column, should be Editor-In-Chief, so I am happy to announce City Paper, Baltimore’s Free Alternative Weekly, has a shiny new Editor-In-Chief, and before I introduce him (and yes, that is a clue), here is a slice of an entry by one of the runners-up:
“What do people in Baltimore want from City Paper? A Joe Flacco facial hair tracker? More compelling narratives with characters who highlight the larger successes and failures of Baltimore? An issue celebrating the city’s bar celebrities, the people who are out every night? A local music awards show? A line-by-line, overly-annotated dissection of the most ridiculous city press release each month? More footnotes? More stories about TV news’ obsession with crime? Tips for negotiating with scalpers? More stories on how Baltimore shaped Beach House?”
Personally as both an employee and a consumer of City Paper, I would say “yes” to All of The Above. More is More! That was a good entry! There were hundreds more words of it, but here’s a better one, because it votes for me:
“Why Mr. Wrong should be the Editor-in-Chief of City Paper in far fewer than 700 words:
He’s smart. He’s funny. He’s cynical. He has a terminal sense of irony. He’s too clever for his own good. He writes well. He can spell. He has a rudimentary grasp on grammar. He’s never right (haha he’s Mr. Wrong). He wants the job. He will probably get the raise he’s deserved for 20 years. He needs a better office. He knows the place. He knows the people. Employees already either respect him or don’t (no employee learning curve on how to manage the boss). It will save on search costs. If he doesn’t work out you can just demote him. All I am saying, is give Wrong a chance.”
Wow, that was a lovely vote, and you told it so well. I may have a rudimentary grasp on grammar, but I have a Black Belt in Gratitude, and so I thank you for that Vote of Confidence. OK, one more, and I had to Editor it a little because The Man (whoever that is, right?) only lets me have two columns every couple-three-four weeks, so here we go, from Wm C. Bond of Baltimore, America:
TOP 10 REASONS WHY ‘MR. WRONG,’ aka JOE MacLEOD, SHOULD BE THE NEXT EDITOR-IN-CHIEF OF CITY PAPER
10. Is named after the cool 500-hundred-year-old immortal samurai in Highlander.
9. Not just kidding about being a team player. When CP’s receptionist is out sick, loves to answer CP phones and say, “City Paper, how may we serve you.” Cracks newsroom up each and every time. No idea why?
8. Takes credit for CP slogan “GET IT WEDNESDAY.” Working on a new slogan “GET YOUR GUN ADS WEDNESDAY.” After all, the Sun gave up this lucrative ad market while still selling ads for male enhancements, etc. In addition, gun ads pay in cash and are anonymous, just like most gun buyers. CP overlords, who are always moaning about cash strapped operations, should love the increased revenue. Plus anti-gun protesters outside are sure to keep CP in the news.
7. Getting a sports columnist is a great idea. I say sign up Brett Hollander. He’s used to working for nothing as he’s on the radio, plus his mom is a judge – handy with those speeding tickets!
6. But, don’t stop with just sports, time to sign up Bloomberg or Soros to sponsor more investigative writers to uncover Mobtown’s dirty underside (and top). Van Smith can’t do everything, you know!
5. “Pet of the Week” is a great idea too, but I was thinking more like “Toy of the Week.” Send in a PIC of your girl or boy of choice – we don’t discriminate at CP, unless they are ugly.
4. Cover sticker ads are beautiful babe, said in my best LA agent talk. But, look, what does a normal person, i.e., guy, do with those stickers? Yup, straight to the garbage or the sidewalk. Fuck putting a cartoon or some smart ass writing on the sticker! I say get a beer sponsor, like Natty, or Resurrection, etc. Turn your sticker into an approved tavern for discount. Boy, talk about increasing circulation!
3. Mr. Wrong is almost a brand, like H.L. Mencken—probably no one who quotes Mencken has ever read the dude. This bodes well for ‘Mr. Wrong,’ aka ‘Joe,’ as every big deal needs a figurehead the plebes can identify with. For example, somebody already named a bike shop after ‘Joe.’ Some people also call their coffee ‘Joe.’ A little more branding, a few more openings and namings of ‘Joe,’ and pretty soon we’ll have ‘Mr. Joe Wrong’s’ City Paper edited by M.R. ‘Joe’ Wrong. Get it? M.R. I better get paid for that one!
2. Plans to film a Baltimore reality show at Frazier’s in Hampden called Baltimore Drinks – kinda’ a riff on ‘The City that Reads’ (har) – wherein M.R. ‘Joe’ Wrong (now a licensed brand) sets about drinking into oblivion with his editorial posse while discussing new ways to make City Paper even better while watching the O’s, listening to The Smiths or whatever else the jukebox players interrupt the game telecast with, and ogling the locals. I can assure you, Gene thinks it’s a lot better than that pretentious crap David Simon puts out, like that’s even close to the real Baltimore!
1. Selling votes for a cheap mug. It’s so ‘Wrong,’ but so Mobtown!!!
OK, wow, thanks for playing! The above submissions have won a beautiful black-and-yellow City Paper mug (please to send me your mug-mailing addresses). Congrats to Evan Serpick, soon to be formerly of Baltimore Magazine for winning the job of Editor-In-Chief of City Paper by applying and interviewing for it and being the best candidate, congrats to the readers of City Paper for reading, and con-grab-ulations to me for getting two columns outta this business and basically having this one written for me. Everybody wins!
> Email Joe MacLeod