News & Politics

The Blogger Beat Special Edition: Arjewtino Says Goodbye

One of our favorite local bloggers, Arjewtino, called it quits today. Before he pulled the plug on his blog, we caught up with him for one last virtual hoorah.

Arjewtino's packing up and hitchhiking his way out of the blogosphere. Photograph by Chris Leaman

Washington’s blogging community is one man down today: Our old pal Arjewtino has announced he’s calling it quits. In late February, he decided to take some time off from his blogging routine, telling readers, “No, I’m not retiring and, no, I am not trapped under anything heavy . . . I just need to unplug.”

Days turned into weeks, and after nearly a month and a half with no new updates, Arjewtino says he’s done: “I thought after not doing it for a few weeks that I’d be itching to get back to it. Instead, I felt relief not to have to do it anymore.”

Arjewtino wrote more than 360 entries over nearly three years, dishing up hilarious anecdotes about his life as a sports-crazed Argentinean Jew. We first interviewed Arjewtino last November for this column and loved his writing so much that we enlisted him twice for guest posts (read them here and here). When he told us last week that he was planning to retire, we cried—just kidding, but we were more than a little sad. Luckily, we were able to talk him into doing one final interview before he signed off for good.

And so, fellow Arjewtino fans, here are your favorite blogger’s parting words. Read on for Arjewtino’s thoughts about his time in the spotlight, what he plans to do next—hint: another blog!—and lots more.

Amount of free time you’ll gain each week from retiring your blog:
“Without having to write a blog anymore, I’ll probably save close to ten hours a week. I can’t even fathom what I’ll do with all that free time. Maybe I’ll do some volunteer work or train for a marathon or finally write a book. Or perhaps I’ll finally check out this Twitter thing all the kids are talking about.”

Number of gray hairs you’ve sprouted since starting your blog:
“Three hundred twenty-seven, but I haven’t counted them in a couple of days. I don’t mind going gray; it beats going bald.”

One thing that would make you start blogging again:
“Getting paid to do it. Or something completely extraordinary, such as Argentina winning the World Cup in 2010.”

How much you’d sell your domain for:
“I’d really like to say that there’s nothing that could make me sell my domain, that is a priceless commodity with far too much sentimental value, that the integrity of my blog is worth more to me than all the pesos in an Argentine bank. But according to that dude who made the ‘How much is your blog worth?’ widget, is worth $42,340.50. I will accept payment in euros and Borders gift cards.”

What you might name your blog if you could do it all over again:
“A good friend of mine was the one who came up with the name Arjewtino during a particularly inspired night of drinking; I can’t imagine having ever had anything different. But another friend recently suggested the name I hope it’s not taken.”

The moniker your girlfriend, “The Princess,” might give herself:
“ ‘The Saint,’ for putting up with my shenanigans. I hear ‘Why can’t you be normal?’ a lot.”

Best post you’ve ever written:
“Man, that’s tough. That’s like being asked to pick your favorite child. I’ve written 361 posts, which I imagine was easier than having 361 kids. My three favorites, though, were probably the week I spent at Dodger fantasy camp, my social experiment when I wore a yarmulke all day, and my Lonely Planet Guide spoof of my apartment.”

Worst post you’ve ever written:
“Like picking your least favorite kid, this one’s easy. The one about bathroom signs. I don’t know why—I just hated it.”

Best comment you’ve ever received:
“One of the unforeseen benefits of blogging has been interacting with my awesome commenters. They made me laugh on a daily basis, and I’ll miss that interaction. That said, the best missive I ever got wasn’t in a comment but in an e-mail. This woman wrote me a long letter professing her love for me and how she wanted to meet me. She called me ‘irresistibly sexy.’ I read the e-mail over the phone to The Princess, and when I got to the ‘irresistibly sexy’ part, she laughed so hard I thought she was going to pass out.”

Number of comments you expect to receive on your post announcing your retirement:
“I never got to do the contest giveaway I had planned to do for my 10,000th comment. I currently have 8,634 comments, and while I don’t think I’ll get 1,366 comments on my last post (my highest for any post is 70), stranger things have happened. So I’ll hold myself to my promise. The 10,000th commenter, if there is one, will receive the official Argentina World Cup jersey I wore while watching the games in 2006. Don’t worry—it’s been washed.”

Biggest lesson blogging has taught you:
“People will say anything if they are guaranteed anonymity. Also, being recognized in public is very strange yet flattering.”

What you’ll miss most about blogging:
“Honestly, writing every day. I won’t miss the daily duty of blogging, which can be hard on your ‘real’ life, but I will miss the writing aspect of it. Now I’ll have to rely on witty Facebook status updates to improve my writing.”

Where we might find your writing in the future:
“I plan on writing several strongly worded letters to people/companies/TV shows that offend me, and I’m excited about a new project of filling out restaurant customer-service surveys. Actually, with the help of a friend who’s a Web designer, I’m working on a personal photography site and photo blog, which I hope to launch next month. It won’t be even remotely like the intimacy of a personal blog, but it’s what I’m looking forward to working on right now.”

Blogs you’ll continue to lurk on:
“None. They’re all migrating to something called Twitter.”

Parting words to your adoring fans:
“I just want to say thank you. Many of you have become my friends, many of you have made my blog better than I could have ever managed on my own, and many of you have sent me the funniest hate mail I could have asked for. So, again, thank you for these past three years; I’ll never forget them. It’s easy to be cynical when you’re online, to deride the ridiculous and mock the defenseless. Sometimes it’s even necessary. But it’s harder, I think, to find that thin line between earnestness and lightheartedness. Have fun with your blogs and blog personalities, but don’t forget we’re all real people leading our lives the best we can. And when you’re in a bind for blogging material, remember, poop is always funny.”

Next week, we return to our regularly scheduled program with an interview with mommy blogger Amy Storch from Amalah. Check back on Wednesday for her thoughts on raising two boys, how she entertains her kids for free in Washington, and where she likes to go for an adults-only date.

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