Episode 4

Blogsmoke

SOUND: MODEM CONNECTING FADES UP TO FULL MIKE—SINGLE SHOT—RICHOCHET

MUSIC: UP AND UNDER—RECORDED—CUT 1

ANNOUNCER: (VOICE OVER MUSIC) Around Twitter Town and in the territory of the net—there’s just one way to handle the harassers and the stalkers—and that’s with an Internet Sheriff and the smell of “BLOGSMOKE”!

MUSIC: THEME HITS: FULL BROAD SWEEP AND UNDER—RECORDED—CUT 2

ANNOUNCER: “BLOGSMOKE” starring W. J. J. Hoge. The story of the trolling that moved into the young Internet—and the story of a man who moved against it. (MUSIC: OUT)

JOHN: I’m that man, John Hoge, Internet Sheriff—the first man they look for and the last they want to meet. It’s a chancy job—and it makes a man watchful … and a little lonely.

MUSIC: MAIN TITLE—RECORDED—CUT 3

SOUND: FOOTSTEP DOWN HALLWAY

JOHN: (VOICE OVER FOOTSTEPS) Well, I guess I’d better go down stairs to the Clerk’s Office and file an appeal.

AARON: Yes, and it will be a trial de novo. You’ll be able to introduce and emphasize the evidence that he was on notice.

JOHN: Maybe he’ll pay attention to what his lawyer just told him and knock it off.

SOUND: FOOTSTEPS FADE

JOHN: And I got a new trial date for the appeal in the Circuit Court, the 14th of June, 3-1/2 months away. The Grouch didn’t heed the judge’s notice to stop contacting me. He didn’t take his lawyer’s advice about not harassing me. Let me tell you about just one of the incidents.

THE GROUCH: (THROUGH A SMALL SPEAKER) It’s all (BLEEP). It’s all absolute (BLEEP). And I and my family have been put through pain and suffering because Lee Stranahan has a grudge. Because somebody, in my opinion, is paying Lee Stranahan to file these charges against me, in the hopes that I will either break or die. I got some (BLEEP) news for you, Stranny (PAUSE) Walker, Hoggy, Frey (PAUSE) and Frey (PAUSE) beware the Ides of March.

MUSIC: SCENE BUMPER MUSIC—RECORDED—CUT 4

JOHN: BlogBash is an awards ceremony held by the National Blogger’s Club during the Conservative Political Action Conference each year. It’s the hot ticket party at CPAC. This year, the Ides of March fell during the Conference.

BlogBash was held at a club that was a couple of blocks from the Convention Center, and, a few days before BlogBash, the club received a phone call from one of The Grouch’s associates, a convicted serial Bomber, threatening the event with a demonstration. There were about a dozen or so of us attending the event who were aware of the threat and who were on the lookout for possible troublemakers.

SOUND: CROWED BAR BACKGROUND UP AND UNDER—SUSTAIN IN BACKGROUND

RULE 5 GIRL: John, they’re out there.

JOHN: What?

RULE 5 GIRL: There’s someone out there stalking people coming and going from the club. He’s got a camera and is taking their pictures.

JOHN: OK, I’ll check it out.

SOUND: CROWDED BAR FADES OUT

JOHN: Sure enough, there was. He was a goofy looking guy who we later identified as someone who worked with The Bomber. They had met in prison while the Goofball was doing time on a kiddie-porn charge.

Oh, and we found out later that The Bomber was there too. He was photographed while there.

SOUND: CROWDED BAR BACK UP—SUSTAIN IN BACKGROUND

AARON: Hey, John. Look at this on my phone.

JOHN: What the … Whose account is that?

AARON: Look, it’s the Twitter account The Bomber probably uses. He’s tweeting about BlogBash and describing things as they happen. He’s got to be someplace just outside.

JOHN: Yeah, and he’s swapping tweets with The Grouch.

SOUND: CROWDED BAR FADES OUT

ANNOUNCER: Wow! I don’t know about you, but if I’d been there, I coulda used a drink. As a matter of fact, I think I’ll have one as soon as I get off this broadcast. A cold beer in a Team Lickspittle glass would hit the spot. The Team Lickspittle glass holds a full pint and is available exclusively at The Hogewash Store. Drop by today and show your support for Team Lickspittle.

And now back to our story.

MUSIC: SCENE BUMPER MUSIC—RECORDED—CUT 5

SOUND: ROAD NOISE—CAR INTERIOR POV—SUSTAINS UNDER

AARON: I can’t believe that they were dumb enough to put on such a fizzle of a demonstration. The Bomber claimed it would be massive, and there was just the one heckler/photographer.

JOHN: Someone else was there. Those tweets were being sent while people had gone outside to talk to the photographer. He couldn’t have sent them. I was watching from just inside. He only had that Nikon in his hands.

AARON: Yes, but after such a big threat, that was a stupid PR move.

JOHN: No more stupid that The Bomber getting himself photographed while stalking your wife a couple of weeks ago.

AARON: Well, there clear evidence of The Grouch’s participation. You’re going to document it, aren’t you?

JOHN: Of course.

SOUND: ROAD NOISE FADES

MUSIC: CLOSING TITLE UP AND UNDER—RECORDED—CUT 6

ANNOUNCER: (VOICE OVER MUSIC) The Grouch kept up his harassment, as if he were sure of the righteousness of his actions—as we will see in the next episode of “BLOGSMOKE”!

MUSIC: SWELL AND CONTINUE TO MUSIC OUT

ANNOUNCER: The Legal Department wishes the following declaimer read: “‘BLOGSMOKE’ is a work of fiction. Anyone who feels it might be about him should read Proverbs 28:1.” This is LBS, the Lickspittle Broadcasting System.

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