Some people use a set of beliefs to guide their lives, maybe tenets or a code of ethics, perhaps commandments. I like to use policies. It sounds official, and yet at the same time open to revision. Changing your policies sounds progressive and not at all namby-pamby like changing your beliefs. Changing a code of ethics sounds like something that might require a meeting involving people in robes and chambers.
But policies, those can be changed at whim, and recently I’ve changed some policies that govern this little institution we call Supergenius, Inc.
UPDATED Supergenius, Inc. Policy #281: The I am Not Paul Westerberg Conundrum
Despite my best efforts an annoying segment of society refuses to believe that I am not Paul Westerberg. Sure I “run” a Paul Westerberg fansite, and sure I have messy hair, and sure I write incredibly witty and emotionally-complex stuff, but that’s where the similarities end. I have breasts and he does not. He has musical talent and I do not. He’s been published in the NY Times, I have not. We couldn’t be more different than night and jellybeans.
Plus, the contact email for Paul Westerberg.net is email@example.com. That stands for Queen of the Underground which is me, and I am not Paul Westerberg.
As you know I routinely get e-mail from misguided souls begging me for interviews as if I were Paul Westerberg. Usually, despite my general hatred of replying to e-mail, I would tell the clueless party that I was not Paul Westerberg and their inquiry would be better directed to his manager.
But since the death of Alex Chilton and the Times piece Westerberg did on the death of his friend, I’ve been inundated with requests. Everything from some kid who wants Paul to take part in his ‘zine to asking Paul to participate in a tribute to Jonathan Richman.
There’s been so many asinine requests sent to firstname.lastname@example.org the past few weeks that I have made it an official policy not to respond at all, unless they address the e-mail to me (Jodi, who is not Paul Westerberg) directly. The policy also includes the loud and vocal derision of anyone who sends such a request to that e-mail address and calls me Paul. Listen up people, this means that the official policy of Supergenius, Inc. is to tell the universe that you are stupid.
It’s harsh I know. But we need policies like this to guide us into a strong and profitable quarter.