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I Wish It Were Under Better Circumstances, But The Barstool New York Boys Are Back Where It All Started: Blogging From Home

I know all the OG Stoolies are still around who remember the birth of Barstool New York like it was yesterday. The day their favorite blog on the internet all of a sudden had another tab at the top and these two little shitheads who weren't El Presidente started having blogs go up on it. It was a rough start for both of us: you vs. KFC and me. If you were from Boston, you fucking hated our guts, refused to read us and made sure to comment on every blog letting us know. If you weren't, you also fucking hated our guts and did the same thing. But slowly, little by little, we earned your respect, the commenting changed from a very real, visceral hatred to the more loving, only 90-95% hatred, with a little bit of "designed to make you clinically depressed but in a more playful way." Meeting these Stoolies out at events who tell me their favorite blog of mine from 2009 or how they read KFC's "Blindo" blog in real-time is my favorite thing that happens. The oldheads who know the Chuck E Cheese reference from this picture.

I also know there are even more newer Stoolies, fans who showed up later on in the rise to the top, some even post-Chernin deal. Fans who only know Kmarko as the snarky dickhead EIC walking in and out of meetings with his pussy little notebook who only has time to blog 1 or 2 a day, and only know KFC as the guy who just constantly at all times is talking -- into a camera, a radio mic, a podcast mic, just doesn't even have conversations anymore without turning a Record button and his Podcast Voice on. We love you Stoolies just as much. It's like your children — sure,  you respect the oldest more, and the youngest frustrate you and are always smearing their diaper poop on the walls, but at the end of the day you love them all equally.

But for the first group who already knows, and the second who can learn it now: this is how it all started. KFC in his apartment. Kmarko in his apartment. Nothing but a laptop, headphones and a Wifi router. Communicating with each other exclusively through Gchat — day and night, not on text, not on the phone (lol fucking yeah right), not even seeing each other in person for months, maybe a year at a time.  

When John and Dan joined up within the next couple of years, the gang that still haunts Dave's dreams at night was born

Nonstop Gchatting that could not stopped by rain, sleet, snow, or Act of God. Constant back and forth, collaboration, bouncing jokes and ideas around. For years there wasn't a blog of ours that went up that didn't have at least a small part of the others in it. 

We woke up, got out of bed, walked 5 feet to our desk, sat down. That's where we stayed from 9-6, getting up and leaving our laptop only to piss — if #2, it came with obviously — scouring the internet for stories to blog, blogging all of em one after another after another. Coordinating 30 minute blocks to switch off back and forth, flipping coins for who got to blog what and not having to worry about reblogging anyone else. Choice of ANY story you wanted because there weren't any internet police back then, not even any basic human decency. The things we used to say. Goodness.

Those small, dark apartments in extreme isolation with a lack of any human connection whatsoever is where we began to add the towers, battlements and minarets to the castle that Dave had built to try and help turn it into an empire.

Oh, you think blogging alone in your apartment is your ally. But you merely adopted blogging alone in your apartment; We were born in it, molded by it. We didn't see the light/outside world/professional office and workplace until we were already men, by then it was nothing to us but BLINDING! The shadows of the internet while blogging stories from it alone in your apartment communicating with coworkers by Gchat only betray you, because they belong to us!

(-KFC/Kmarko 2020)

As the years went by and Barstool became more legit, the Gang faded bit by bit, replaced by a theoretical concept that we had been reading about extensively in ancient texts and, when we moved into our first physical office in the real human world, all agreed to try it out: talking to each other, with our mouths. 

Now everyone's so damn busy all the time, I'll go days without even looking at the Gmail icon. When it gives me the "bloop!" sound now, it's no longer Dan sending a picture of NFL coaches or Kevin asking if he can say this racist joke or John asking if a rash looked infected. It's like fucking Ethan or something asking how to spell his name. But that's just a bit of sadness, certainly no complaints: I'm okay with Dan going off and making most of the revenue for the company so that I can have a bonus, and Kevin and John logging off because they have to go interview like Barack Obama or Oprah. Plus it's kind of fun proofreading a blog from a 20 year old white kid from Connecticut who writes like English is his second language or reviewing a Mantis video where I get to look at Mantis, in motion, just 5 to 10 minutes of watching Mantis be alive.

But I knew the day would come….

I wish it were under better circumstances. The nostalgia is kind of ruined knowing that we're apartment blogging because EVERYONE is in their apartments as a deadly virus ravages the outside world. And truth be told, part of the reason we were so excited for the Chernin deal was because we were getting an office — 7 years working at home alone in pure isolation really does a number on your mental health and your social skills. Still learning how to say "hello good morning" to people and not just stare straight ahead with headphones on. I'm getting there. Thank you Peter!

Wouldn't change a thing about the ride this fucking place has been. 

Oh and FYI nostalgia is just a wistful affection for the past. Like oh yeah, those times, remember those. I'm pretty good with where we ended up and I'd rather not ever go back.