FIRST, I WANT TO THANK all of you who helped celebrate my 100th column these past couple of weeks. It’s very flattering to know that you took the time to read and consider 11 of my columns–and by choosing one as “The Best Dave’s Place Ever,” you’ve ensured that I’ll never write a better one. I’ll admit, part of me had hoped to continue improving over time, but knowing that I’ve already done the best I’ll ever do takes a lot of the pressure off.
The one downside is that this makes it kind of pointless to have another vote after I write another 100 columns–which might also preclude my getting another two weeks off. So I’m thinking, maybe after my 200th column, we can have a vote for “The Second-Best Dave’s Place Ever.” Or it could be titled, “Dave Did His Best to Write Something Better Than Â¿Â¿Â¿Currents,’ but Alas, It Was Futile.”
Speaking of “Currents,” some of you might have noticed that when it was posted as the winner, the accompanying poll results actually showed higher scores for “Oh Brother” and “Slow-Motion Highlights,” and perhaps you’re wondering how this happened. I have no idea. I had two weeks off.
But I do have a hunch. At first I paid no attention, knowing as we all do that winning the popular vote does not necessarily ensure an election. Then it occurred to me that the election officials at the Field & Stream offices must have discovered that my brother Dan was rigging the polls by voting an inordinate number of times for “Oh Brother” (in which he is the primary character) and by attempting to buy votes. My guess is that they intercepted this e-mail communication between him and my brother Greg:
I’ll give you a dollar for every vote you cast for “Oh Brother.” Don’t tell anyone.
You’re going about it all wrong.
Why pay me when you can threaten Dave’s friends, George and Paulie, for free? Call and remind them that in “Slow-Motion Highlights” they’re described cozying up to one another in Paulie’s truck. And that if “Slow-Motion Highlights” wins, they’ll be locked in a lover’s embrace for eternity in the minds of the readers.
Good idea. But will you still vote for “Oh Brother”? Please!
OF COURSE, I knew what Dan was up to. (He called several times to lobby me to vote for “Oh Brother.”) And I knew I could easily foil his scheme by voting for something else an excessive number of times. But then the better angels of my nature took over. I realized that as the writer of the column, I should take the higher ground and remain impartial. So I convinced my wife to do it.
Her favorite, as it turns out, was “Slow-Motion Highlights.” Apparently, the all-knowing F&S; election officials uncovered her plot to thwart Dan’s scheme and disqualified both columns from competition. And lo and behold, “Currents” was declared the winner. Dan, however, is demanding a recount.
* * *
In fact, “Currents” won fair and square. The discrepancy in the poll results was merely due to the fact that people continued voting after the polls were officially closed at 10 A.M. last Wednesday, when “Currents” was indeed leading the pack. And in fact, I do want to once again sincerely thank all of you who read this column. It’s a privilege to write for you, and I hope you’ll continue reading–despite the fact that I’ll never write anything better than “Currents.”
For any of you who had a particular favorite and would like a recount of the votes, I have reluctantly partnered with Dan (for an undisclosed fee) to take petitions. You can send them (free of charge) to firstname.lastname@example.org.