Welcome to seventh grade, folks. I am not even sure where to begin. In fact, I probably shouldn’t begin at all. But when a person of some importance unleashes a personal attack on me, I should at least take a moment to explain my side of the story for the four of you that give a shit.
First of all, I LOVED Dirk Hayhurst’s first book. You can read my comments I wrote about the book in 2011 HERE. I then started reading excerpts from his next book, which will deal with his time in the Rays organization. I entered the excerpts expecting to love this book as well.
However, after enjoying one excerpt, the next two came off as demeaning to Joe Maddon and insulting to the Rays. And that is saying something, since as most of you know, I am not shy about criticizing Maddon or the team. But in Hayhurst’s own words, he told the Rays he would not write about “inside” stuff, and then blatantly broke that declaration because it wasn’t “legally binding.” Maybe I am just too old fashioned about keeping my word, but that bothered me.
[side note: I have been asked on a few occasions by the Rays to not write something. Even though there was nothing stopping me legally, I honored their requests without hesitation. I am not saying that makes me morally superior (I have written things I regret and RV is not a big fan of this site). I am just saying I practice what I preach.]
Basically, Hayhurst released some “trailers” for his book, just as many producers release trailers long before a movie is finished. These were short excerpts. But they were the excerpts Hayhurst chose to release to tease the final product. Well, I wrote my feelings about a couple of the “trailers” and what they seemed to portray about the direction of the book. It was no different than expressing feelings about a movie based on the clips the producers wanted us to see ahead of time.
In the end, I don’t believe that I ever passed judgement on Hayhurst. Rather, I just commented on the direction his book appeared to be headed. However, that didn’t stop Hayhurst from attacking me personally.
He wrote a 1,600 word response to my criticisms on his blog. I will admit, I did not read all of it. My first inclination was to look for the direct reference to this blog which came in this segment…
The folks over at some Ray’s blog showed up late to the party in a big huff and I got that reaction I was looking for. Most of it trite, venomous and delusional, but perfect none the less. At least I know someone’s reading…As of now, they’re busy completing a full psychological profile about me in the comments section. You should go check it out. It’s flattering, funny, and Insightful, too. I’m rather enjoying finding out for the first time why I do the things I do. Why I write. Why I’m so damn bitter and unsatisfied. Where my deep anger and animosity comes from. What a bust I was. Why I’m out to get the Rays. Give enough people a comments box and they’ll solve all the world’s problems by suffocating it with their own.
Outside of Hayhurst’s efforts to belittle this website (and those of you that comment), it was curious that he was taking offense to my post and at the same time writing that he “got that reaction [he] was looking for.” And it was curious that it took “some Ray’s blog” to find out “for the first time why [he does] the things [he does].”
I also thought it was interesting that a best-selling author was attempting to belittle my website by refusing to even use its name and made a horrendous grammatical error in doing so. So in his comments section I mentioned that his attempt to insult my blog included a grammar mistake [Ray's]. Not five minutes later I received an email from Mr. Hayhurst…
Thanks for the grammar catch— as far as I can tell, it’s the only useful thing you’ve done with print to date.
I criticized one sentence. He criticized my entire career. I’m not going to lie. That stung. I have always thought of this website as something that was useful (hopefully) but not to be taken very seriously. This has never been my “career.” Rather, it is something I do for fun and something that hopefully makes it easier for you guys to learn about your favorite baseball team. I have, on the other hand, written things elsewhere that I am quite proud of. But in one sentence, a best selling author shit all over that.
I responded with a short email telling him I really loved his first book, and that I had given him the benefit of the doubt after many Rays fans had complained. And I said that I was sad things had ended up here. He then responded in a long-winded email accusing me of making this “personal” and he once again belittled my “little fan site.” Honestly, I am not even sure what half of this means…
Stop. Just stop.You slammed me in your blog based on supposition and misguided conjecture. I retorted. Then you came at me again. You made this personal, I just gave it back to you.And what is this crap about “what other people said about you…” Please. Like that’s some kind of proof of my character that I should be spurred to moral atonement. You mean other people who also don’t know me, who also base an opinion of me on what they’ve read through various 140 character dispersals? Obviously they’re excellent judges of character with loads of first hand knowledge… I’m just devastated.Think of me what you will. I don’t care. Nor should I. Nor should you. The world loves to talk about how tough it is until it’s gets it’s feelings hurt. Then it screams outrage and broken expectations. You liking my work doesn’t mean you have to like me, or that I have to like you.For the record, I respect what you’ve done with your little fan site. I hope it prospers for you. But don’t come to me fresh from the pig stye and talk about what should be kept sacred.We’re done here.
Pig stye? Is he saying my website is pig stye or is he saying my life is a pig stye? Either way, I am not sure I have ever had a conversation with an adult in which they insulted me with “pig stye.” But I digress…
The amazing thing is I never thought about Hayhurst at all. I thought about his book. I didn’t slam him based on “supposition and misguided conjecture.” I criticized a piece of writing that he put on the internet.
But there you go. Dirk Hayhurst, best selling author. Has a book coming out about the Rays. Hates me. Thinks I have never accomplished anything. Thinks my “little fan site” is a pig stye.
If Hayhurst would have just said “don’t worry, the book is balanced,” I would have passed that along to you guys and promised to give him the benefit of the doubt. Instead, I got a full dose of the “deep anger and animosity” he freely admits to having.
But as I told Hayhurst, he need not worry any further. I am done reading his excerpts. I am done commenting on his book. But hey, I can still be a fan of his wife’s work. She seems cool.