Kurt Andersen and Andrew Sullivan are writing about weblogs this week on Slate. While leaving most of the smoke/fire debate to others more expert than I, I’ll say that based on their presence and comments, if blogging were the web, it’s now 1997. What caught my eye was this quote from Andersen, who I’ve taken issue with before, on the subject of Documenta, but who I’ve admired for years (except at NYMag. Off topic.):
Lately, however, thinking about blogs, I have entertained a retrospective fantasy about a kind of endowed blog model that would have been interesting to try with Inside.com: If we had put the capital we raised into Treasury bills, we’d have had $1.5 million a year in income, with which we could’ve employed and published our best dozen reporter-commentators forever.
KA’s not alone in this notion of “retrospective fantasy,” especially as it relates to the flood of capital and (ultimately ephemeral) wealth of the recent past. How often does he re-spend the money Inside.com burned through? Recently at drinks, a business school classmate I hadn’t seen for a few years talked with assiduous wistfulness about “the day when [his] net worth hit $100 million.” Every once in a while, I cash out near the top, or I go ahead with the heavy hedging strategy a lone adviser suggested after the IPO. It’s like looking at a mark on a wall, which, even years later, shows how high the water was.
[image: american museum of photography]