jump to navigation

Fare-thee-well, Innocent Bystanders March 22, 2015

Posted by Mrs. Peel in News.

As geoff mentioned yesterday, Innocent Bystanders is coming up on its ninth anniversary.  Nine years ago, the troll “mike” had singlehandedly rendered comments at AOSHQ nigh-unreadable, and many of us had begun writing/commenting on smaller satellite blogs (which later became collectively known as the “Moronosphere”).  As a joke, Retired Geezer created this blog, Michael’s Comments, and several of us gravitated here to comment.

The last nine years have been very busy for all of us.  I haven’t posted anything here for ages and ages, and the few stalwart posters still trying to keep the blog going have become more and more overloaded, so we’ve decided to close Innocent Bystanders at the completion of its ninth year.  Several of us will be writing posts over the next few days to refresh our memories on all the good times we had here; Dave will wrap the whole thing up on March 25.  So, this is my farewell post.

(A quick note to catch you guys up on me, since it’s been so long since I posted here – Will and I got married back in 2011, and our little boy was born in 2012.  In 2013, I started a major project at work that I am just now getting close to completing.  So that’s why I haven’t been around – my day consists of working and toddler-wrangling.  Right now, the toddler in question is nuzzling the television.  Sigh.)

Anyway, IB will always hold a special place in my memory.  We had some very entertaining threads, everything from silly jokes to troll-hunting to relationship advice.  And we also had get-togethers, the first one of which I attended being right around this time (March Madness) at Michael’s place.

To be honest, I was pretty nervous about meeting INTERNET PEOPLE for the first time.  (My mom’s bizarre ideas didn’t help, either.  More on that below.)  Michael’s hello hug was a little bit too long, but what would you expect?  Anyway, he, Cathy, geoff, Dave, Lipstick, Eddie, and even Wickedpinto, plus the inevitable person(s) I inadvertently omitted, and I managed to rein in the weirdness long enough that we all had a great time.  Many laughs were had, excellent food was devoured, and absolutely no basketball was actually watched.

So anyway, even though I’ve barely darkened IB’s doors in years, I’ll miss the old place.  Thanks, everyone, for the laughter and friendship over the years.

And finally, for the last time, here is my mom’s take on Michael and Cathy’s probable motivations for hosting the IBMMP:

Me:  So anyway, I’m planning to go to this party.  It will be fun!
Mom:  Who-all is coming?
Me:  *lists names*
Mom:  And what will you do?
Me:  I dunno, hang out, go to the range.  The usual.
Mom:  Are you sure that’s all?
Me:  (confused)
Mom:  You know, when your dad and I first got married, we were very surprised to learn how many people we knew were into wife-swapping.
Me:  …
Me:  (trying to break the tension with a joke)  Well, wouldn’t I need a partner in order to properly reciprocate?
Mom:  (condescendingly)  They make sure the numbers work out.
Me:  (thinking)  <i>one…two…Wickedpinto…OMG!!!</i>  (aloud)  I really don’t think that’s what’s going on.

The looks on everyone’s faces when I recounted this story were hilarious.  As is hopefully needless to say, no wives were swapped in the making of this blog!


1. Cathy - March 22, 2015

Huggz, Beautiful Mrs. Peel!

2. Mrs. Peel - March 22, 2015

So my italic tags are broken I DON’T CARE.

Thanks, Cathy 🙂

3. Retired Geezer - March 22, 2015

That’s one of my regrets, that I never got to meet you in person.
You and geoff and Laura.
Oh and Brewfan.
Crap… I’m forgetting important people.
Quitting now.

4. geoff - March 22, 2015

A sad day, but real life must have its due. Thanks for kicking this off, Mrs. P. When I started getting into blogs back in 2002, my daughter was only 2. Now she’s a sophomore in high school.

Blogging has spanned a hefty chunk of our lives.

5. See-Dubya - March 22, 2015

what? WHAT? nope. no way. not allowed.

c’mon, i even bookmarked you guys.

6. geoff - March 22, 2015

Hey See-Dub! I miss the old days at JunkYardBlog as well.

We really shook the pillars of Heaven, didn’t we Wang?

No horseshit, Jack.

No horseshit, Wang.

/Big Trouble in Little China

7. BrewFan - March 22, 2015

Great comment Mrs. P. And you are on my bucket list RG.

8. See-Dubya - March 22, 2015

But I just gave up blogging. Any idiot can do that. You guys are giving up Commenting!

Look, most of the other blogs i read have gone big time and mainstream, been SEO’d to death, gotten homogenized for mainstream consumption, or been bought out by a megacorporation making their writers fabulously less-insolvent. And/or the grizzled founding talent was replaced by new Young Republicans who probably blogged in a repp tie and Osh Kosh b’Gosh onesies.

But not IB. You guys remained consistently inconsistent, quirky, amateurish, nerdy, weird, crude, and painfully out-of-step for nine years.

In other words, you were kindred spirits. I got nine years of great links,videos, music recommendations, advice, and entertainment out of you schmoes for absolutely free.

So please–have pity on a toothless, incontinent old retired blogger. Don’t wuss out. Keep this thing running another year.

Make it an IB decade.

9. Mrs. Peel - March 22, 2015

I just reread those old threads I linked. Lots of laughter and a few tears seeing old posts from Michael, Cranky, and Patty Ann.

Geezer, it could still happen. Don’t you run a special Idaho Summer Camp? Are badly behaved toddlers invited to apply?

10. geoff - March 22, 2015

Lots of laughter and a few tears seeing old posts from Michael, Cranky, and Patty Ann.

,,,and Harrison.

most of the other blogs i read have gone big time and mainstream

Sigh. Greatness always eluded us. That and money. The two things that eluded us were greatness and money. And readers. OK, the three things…

I got nine years of great links,videos, music recommendations, advice, and entertainment out of you schmoes for absolutely free.

*notices distinct lack of “charts” in See-Dub’s list.*

A pox upon thee.

11. lauraw - March 22, 2015

I’m not facing this yet. It’s not real.

12. geoff - March 22, 2015

Were Michael here, I’m sure he’d point out that we got 285 flags out of the 307 possible (almost 93%). These are the rat bastard flagholders who never visited:

British Indian Ocean Territory
Caribbean Netherlands
Central African Republic
Christmas Island
Cook Islands
Equatorial Guinea
Norfolk Island
North Korea
Saint Barthelemy
Saint Helena
Saint Martin
Sao Tome and Principe
Saint Maarten
South Sudan
Wallis and Futuna

13. Mrs. Peel - March 22, 2015

I just randomly remembered that at one of the Connecticut meetups, geoff and I were eating breakfast together, and the waitress brought the bill and handed it straight to geoff without asking either of us. (He paid for my breakfast, too. Sucker!!) I thought it was odd at first, then later, it occurred to me that the waitress probably thought geoff was my dad.

Needless to say, geoff didn’t care for this possibility when I brought it up to him. But the alternate hypothesis was that she thought geoff was my sugar daddy, and he REALLY didn’t care for that explanation.

The funny thing is that I was telling Will about it later, and when we looked through some pictures from that meetup, he found one of me and geoff where each of us has their head tilted slightly, at the exact same angle, and each of us is smiling, with the exact same pattern of lines around our mouths. Which could explain the waitress’s assumption. As far as I know, though, we are not actually related!

Anyway, most of you guys haven’t seen me since before Will and I got married. Thanks to a certain small person, the Curse of Baby-Face under which I have suffered my whole life has been partially ameliorated; I have aged more in the last 3.5 years than I did from age 16 to age 28. So, be sure to update your mental images of me to include a wrinkle and a grey hair (except that I plucked it, so imagine a small bald spot).

14. geoff - March 22, 2015

I had yet another alternate hypothesis involving her recognizing my inherent authoritay, but whenever I mention that to people, they burst out laughing.

People’s senses of humor are sometimes odd.

15. Retired Geezer - March 22, 2015

Try to entice Lauraw and Mr. Lauraw to come when you bring baby Peel to Camp Geezer ™.

I have the Skinbad Seal of Approval. They even gave us a handmade quilt when they visited.

16. Sobek - March 22, 2015

Great stuff in that “silly jokes” thread. Thanks for linking that, Peelie.

17. daveintexas - March 23, 2015

>> Mom: You know, when your dad and I first got married, we were very surprised to learn how many people we knew were into wife-swapping.

fuckin dies laughing… hahahahaha.. geez your mom

I have met the aforementioned toddler and he’s every bit as adorable as his mom and dad.

18. Cathy - March 23, 2015

I have not had the pleasure of meeting the little guy — but our Michael did! And according to Michael, he is ADORABLE!!!



THANK YOU Mrs. Peel for making that trip to visit Michael. It meant a great deal to him.

19. Cathy - March 23, 2015

Like Laura, I am not yet accepting this…

20. Mrs. Peel - March 23, 2015

My toddler is indeed adorable. Despite peeing on the floor. 😦

I’m glad we visited Michael.

21. TXMarko - March 24, 2015

It really stinks losing Michael, I wish I would have had the opportunity to meat-up before he passed. Sad thing is, I lived so close….

I remain FB friends with many of you, and look forward to bugging/entertaining you there in the Future.

RIP Michael and IB. You will both be missed.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: