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Fuss, bother, and then…quiet

Anyone who has stumbled here before knows that the emissions are only occasional, that weeks can pass between all of us venting and frothing and arguing over a post such as the previous few, after which the entire site seems to go into sleep mode.

Apologies.  As I explain elsewhere on the site, this is not the day job.

And this morning, in New Orleans, the schedule shows writing deadlines, one hard on the heels of the other.  Sure, when Eric or George or someone else has the upcoming episode, it’s all fun and games with the internet.  And who can’t do set coverage and swing an iPad in between rehearsals and takes?  That’s the down time that is made to answer posts, to poke and be poked with the digital stick.  But for now, I have to go to where people pay for copy, and where there is a film crew that will rightly stomp on me if the white pages for episode 404 are late.

Thanks to everyone for all the recent banter and discussion and argument.  Is it my imagination or are a lot of us becoming better behaved at this sort of thing, if not actually a little bit pleasant?  Feel free to continue to lunge at each other in every way that is argumentative, but not mean-spirited.


  • Some people do it because they’re dicks who have a need to feel like everyone is against them. There was one right-wing troll who used to come to Wire forums and sort of…pee in the punchbowl about the war in Iraq and stuff and I’d think “What show are *you* watching, Keyboard von Chickenhawk?” But I wouldn’t say as much as I could have, because I felt like everyone was ganging up on this jerk-off, and I used to ride the short bus to school so I couldn’t bear that…”Everyone has a voice that needs to be heard.” When I look back on that disaster, the only one more annoying than him was me, circa 2004.

  • Treme was truly excellent this season. The investigation into the NOPD really ramped up the serious content of the show and I also loved the story lines with Sonny and Antoine and the kids he teaches.

    I didn’t realize it was the season finale until I saw the classic montage start 🙁 I felt sadness at the season being way too short.

    I am heading to New Orleans in 2 weeks and just mapped out my musical excursions with the help of the excellent calendar at offbeat mag and wwoz radio (loving that sound). Thanks to Treme for giving me excellent hints on who’s who in NO music. I am looking forward to a trip to Bullet’s and the Speakeasy.


  • David,

    Have you considered implementing a message board into the blog? (I can help you set one up if you’d like).

    If moderated appropriately, it could be a good thing… Just a suggestion!

  • This season of Treme has been my favorite. I can, both unfortunately and fortunately I suppose, relate to Sonny’s story. I’ve never seen the process of relapse so perfectly portrayed in the movies or on television. And that’s coming from somebody who has lived it. So kudos on that Mr. Simon. The similarities between what happened to me and what happened to Sonny are kind of freakish, I struggled with the same combination of substances and the process of use, isolation, bad decisions and then more use was virtually the same. I also have much to owe to an Asian woman who would simply not give up on me. So that whole storyline has hit me hard.

    • Yes – agree with you on Sonny’s relapse being inspiring

      I found how he got his life together amid the isolation of a foreign country. He drew on his inner strength – loved him eating the apple before going out to sea early that morning.

      (As an aside, one character who’s left me fuming is Janette’s sleazy restaurant owner – the actor who plays him knows how to pull all the right face muscles to look like a complete C*NT – hope the last season deals with that.)

      Nelson Hidalgo give me some of your energy!

  • I really hope your project about Midtown Manhattan that you reference in your in development section sees the light of day. I can’t remember where I heard it, but someone referenced 1970’s NYC as a “Dump, where hookers were all over Times Square and Central Park was a war zone. And then I remember the No Reservations where Tony just shits all over the modern day Times Square (where it is basically an outdoor Mall of America tourist shit hole) and talks about home much he misses the old gritty Manhattan. I would love to see this contrast.

    • Oh, he had me at “slow leak,”, although in the interest of attribution, he would tell me to write that Jay Landsman said that, but if Simon hadn’t put it in “Killing Streets” I’d never have known that, given how far Arizona is from Baltimore.(Not as far as I thought, given the outbreak of copper thefts last summer, but, you feel me otherwise, right?) If you haven’t read A Year On The Killing Streets, you ought to. I somehow have two copies of it.
      But, really, whatever you want to make, I promise to at least check it out.

  • Hey David,

    Just want to say what a fan I am of all your work. After watching the penultimate episode of Treme tonight, can I ask you to ask George Pelecanos how he sleeps at night.

    Every time he gets a credit. Every goddamn time…

  • Hey David,

    I was recently invited to the Washington Journalism and Media Conference. Looking at the previous speakers (described as masters of their fields), I was surprised when I didn’t see your name. I’m seriously considering going in the coming July, and a speech from master journalist/ television writer/ anthropologist David Simon would make the trip all the more worthwhile. Any invitations or aspirations to speak at this thing? Do you even know what it is? Thanks for any help you can give me.

    • I do some public speaking.

      As is indicated in the “worthy causes” section of this website, my speaking fees go either to the Ella Thompson Fund of the Parks and People Foundation for Baltimore, a 501c3 charity, that funds recreation programming and other extracurricular education in West Baltimore, or to a series of charities that fund music education in New Orleans.

      If anyone is interested, Amie Yavor at Creative Artists Agency in Los Angeles is my speaking agent.

      Tax-deductible payment can even be made directly to the charity, with organizations covering my travel expenses only. But I don’t waive fees because doing so would mitigate against the charities themselves.

  • If your occasional silence here is the price we have to pay for Treme, I call it a bargain. Every week I tune in and it’s even better than the previous week. I feel like I’ve known all these people for years. Thank you for bringing their world to ours.

  • It’s hard not to wonder if “constructing arguments” isn’t the point of this blog. More than anything else, I’m amazed at how much thought people will give to a question if they know that what they say is going to be examined and bantered about in public forum. If I didn’t hate emoticons so much I’d be slapping a smiley face on the end of this sentence.

  • Kudos and thanks to you sir, as well. Not only have you given us some of the best stories on tube, but you’ve managed to provide a space (on the internet of all places!) for some (mostly) intelligent discussion and debate.

    Here in the Great White North, it’s easier to laid than it is to engage people in political discourse. “Argument is for those brutish Americans.” “We’re above all that.” And so forth. So it’s nice to have found a spot where we can fight it out and not feel too dirty afterward. I’ve quite enjoyed myself here over the last little while.

    Good luck with rest of season 4, David!

    Cheers from Toronto, Y’all!

  • I watched Treme Season 3, episode 7 “Promised Land” a few days ago and just spent the past few moments reading through The Petraeaus Posts (and comments).

    I couldn’t help but recall Terry Colson leering at the greasing of the poles.

    I’ve come to believe that there’s a big difference between vice and sin. New Orleans gets it. The rest of the world . . . .

    Well vice… vice…it’s human, it’s one drink too many, it’s an illegal smile at a coat pocket, it’s betting on the wrong horse. It’s the wrong prick rubbing against the wrong piece of ass.

    Sin… sin is those bodies over in Central City. The ones we keep rolling up on and doing so goddamn little about.

    Sounds to me like John O’Neil could have said that himself.

    • Cheers for writing that down on here – that was one of the best lines in the series from Terry Coulson who you have to love as a character, stuck in his caravan.

      And where he told the busker in fancy dress: Don’t change.

      Loved also the conversation with his ex-wife about New Orleans – his ex’s attitude of the city dreamers mirrored that of Annie’s mother who seemed cynical of the city’s free bohemian spirit.

      Coulson for Mayor!

  • This is one of the two best discussion groups on the intertubes, the other is Ta-Nehisi Coates blog on The Atlantic. Up until this moment, it never occurred to me that both blogs have Baltimore roots.

    In both cases, the civility is due to the firm hand of moderation telling people to chill. Thanks for the space, too bad we can’t share a beer while talking to each other.

  • This has been an enjoyable break from the typical fare I find on the internet. It has shown me how dull my own ability to construct arguments has become. So much of the standard internet discussion is about scoring points that it’s easy to forget how ridiculous the stances we take can become. Witnessing people enter a thread hurling venom because they dislike one sentence and ignore the larger argument has served me well in examining my own shortcomings.

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