One of my professional heroes is Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert and The Dilbert Blog. I have the deepest admiration for someone who has managed to be searingly funny on pretty much a daily basis for more than 15 years.
Adams is a highly acerbic writer; the blog comes off far scrappier than the strip or his many Dilbert books (though in the same vein) and there are times when the blog entries can be downright off-putting.
In fact, I’d say that The Dilbert Blog does a wonderful job of illustrating the differences betweeen reading a writer’s blog and reading his or her polished and edited works.
Adams had blogged a few times about a neurological condition he has (spasmodic dysphonia). It affects a part of the brain that controls certain types of speech. In his case, he could still do public speaking but found himself unable to speak offstage (such as on the phone). Oddly, though, he could still sing. And whisper.
The disease is considered incurable, but Adams embarked on Dilbert-like experimentation to find a cure for it. And eventually he stumbled onto a way he could trick himself into speaking normally. Needless to say, he’s delighted.
He blogged about his recovery, and then blogged about the consquences of blogging about it. In this quintessential Adams post, he describes learning that he is not quite famous enough, and his recovery is not quite interesting enough, to get earn him a spot on 60 Minutes.
But he’s thrilled to have gotten so much online reaction to his story, anyway, noting
I normally get about 25,000 hits a day on this blog. After the voice story posted, I got about 180,000 hits for each of the next two days.
I am more touched than a congressional page.