by BEAST Guest Editor
An Anthropomorphized Tree
When I was first approached by Allan Uthman with an offer to guest edit an issue of The BEAST my first thought was, what the heck is that?
He explained a bit about it: in the summer of 2002 an ex-Mongolian basketball pro by the name Taibbi moved from Moscow to Buffalo and started the ultimate, free biweekly with a wily lawyer named Fallon. He soon realized his terrible mistake and got better work. The fledgling local paper persisted under the incompetent guidance of Fallon and a rogues gallery of semi-literate editors, until this Uthman came along in ’04 and failed to measure up to Taibbi at a slightly higher level.
I was unimpressed, offended. Matt Taibbi has been slaughtering my people for his “journalism” for far too long. No, Rolling Stone has never been friend to the earth. The ego! And despite this BEAST’s move to a monthly, pay format a few years ago, the human standing in my majestic shade has been responsible for the killing of scores of innocent trees, and distributing their pulverized corpses across the country with carbon-emitting automobiles. He is no friend of the earth!
Then this Uthman had the gall to try to impress me with the story that he’s an Iraqi born Kurd, whose father was once Saddam Hussein’s dentist. That’s how he got on Al Franken’s radio show, he said. How am I supposed to take this guy seriously?
“We’re going green,” he choked up, touching one of my knots. “It’s only online now. We’re, um, eliminating our carbon footprint or something.”
I could tell from the hurt in that Kurdish man’s weird-looking eyes that his tears were not brought on at all in the least, never, ever, never, at all by a vain desire to see his byline in print or by the magazine’s financial inviability in the face of both an economic depression and the demise of print media in the internet age. He wept from remorse. I forgave him and we embraced.
It’s now my honor to call Uthman a friend, and it’s my duty to guest edit this 138th, very special online-only edition of The BEAST.
Now what will this mean for me, the reader, you may be asking? To all fellow travelers here on space ship earth this will mean all the fresh air you can breathe and all the unpolluted water you can drink! To the casual or avid internet reader this will mean you’re a trend setter! As a subscriber to the print edition, this will mean you’re probably not getting your magazine. Sucks to be you.