the history of the busblog: part twah – the car the readers bought me

the engraved ipod was nice, the trip to aruba was beautiful, the wishlist gifts were very nice, the second ipod was awesome once the first one broke.

but what i wanted was a car.

true, the irony of the busblog – a blog about a guy riding around LA in a bus – striving to get a car from the readers who obviously liked the bus-themed subplot, was not lost on its author.

still, i wanted to be the first blogger to get a car from its readers, simply because he asked.

problem was, cars cost a Lot of money.

it only took 3 weeks to get $1,000 to go to aruba. but what I learned was, those were all the readers willing to fork over money, and 3 weeks of a pledge drive is super annoying.

to be able to raise $30k to purchase a Cadillac Snoop De Ville, would take some miracle.

i figured if i made a list on the side of the blog with everyone’s name who donated to the caddy fund, it would be a nice little ongoing growing thing.

also any time someone donated id put their name in the middle of a blog post and if they had a blog id link to their blog.

while there were miracles happening because of this blog, the windfall of ridiculous amounts of cash was not one of them. fortunately.

i say fortunately because i always thought people should write, and blog, and art, for love, not money.

and then one day i got laid off at E!

and even though it was a miserable place to work, i was sad, and now really broke because that place barely paid me anything.

alas– i had a friend, basart was his name. he hates; bad grammar.

there i was, jobless. hopeless. and i think he had just won the lottery or cashed in some stock options, or

accidentally found that his gold monocle was solid gold and not just gold plated,

and bought a brand new car with the item.

he had a perfectly good Toyota Sentra he was gonna trade in for a few grand.

but being a huge busblog reader (and also possibly a secret copy editor of the blog)  he knew i could probably use a car as i drove around the city passing out resumes.

so he said yo tone, hows the car fund going? i was all, not bad, if i want a used car, but i want a new car.

he was like, you’ll never get a new car. busblog is good, but come on, aint That good.

so he sold me his Nissan, minus two back hub caps, and i drove around the country to meet and thank all of the readers who had donated $1 or $5 or $10 which turned into that car.

in 2006 i went all the way to Toronto and then Cape Cod, then down to New Orleans and even saw most of the great comeback Da Bears had in Zona on Monday night.

didnt meet all the people, but blogged about the trip so they were there with me.

did i have any problems with the car? yes, but it was compact disc related and it caused me to have to get towed in New York City.

turned out the JVC cd player slash Sirius satellite indash 100 watt stereo deck did not like homemade burned CDs.

If a burned cd got into the player, sometimes it would drain the battery because it would try to spit it out but have difficulty.

murphys law: that problem didnt surface until i was driving around the world. but being a blogger, i took a picture and blogged the sad towing too.

i had that car for 5 years until the xbi permanently loaned me their 2011 SS,

and i gave the Nissan to danielle, yr girl, who currently has it.

a brief early history of the weirdest blog to last ten years

the busblog was born at this desk at E! today in 2001 during a government-mandated 15-minute break.

i was bored, depressed, and hoping that a blog about a single man riding the bus in LA would impress the ladies.

and lead to fame, fortune, and a wildly successful career in journalism.

because i hated my job at E!  i didnt care if i got fired, so i blogged about sex drugs politics rock music

and pretended i worked as an undercover superhero who flew a helicopter around LA for a group called the xbi.

tall tales were told about dating anna kournikova, mariah carey, and several nba cheerleaders.

lame right? right! but somehow the busblog became popular within several weeks.

like really popular.

popular cam girls at the time (teenage bloggers with great design and little content) had amazon wishlists

and their readers would buy them gifts off those lists and even send them money via PayPal

so i told my readers, “we know you give money to these girls who you have no chance with

who arent nearly as funny and prolific as i am so you may as well flow the busblog too.”

those days the readers bought me iPods, Amazon wishlist items, anything.

(eventually they even bought me the car i drove around the country in.)

and in three weeks one month i ended up with a trip to aruba, all from lots of small donations via the busblog.

after a while i wanted to give something back to people who donated money. but like the little drummer boy, what did i have to give?

i had all this busblog content, most of it was disposable, but some of it was evergreen enough for a book. i asked the kids in a blogpost in 2002 what i should name a book made of blog posts, and Jeff Jarvis of the mighty buzzmachine  in the comments said, “Blook“,

i went to a copy shop and made the first blook (pictured, right).

A few years later the Oxford Dictionary added it, and named the word “blook” as the runner up for Word of the Year.  yes, seriously.

the next year a company called Cafe Press, known for letting people make small batches of tshirts and stickers started letting people make their own books online.

i was still at E! i still hated it. i walked a couple hundred feet to eonline and i told them the truth, which was the busblog was getting more comments and more traffic than anyone on eonline. please let me quit working in my part of e, and let me blog About e from a comfy desk at eonline.

they said no. but before they said no they asked me for all of my blogging secrets. at first i was gonna tell them where to go.

but because i was still riding the bus at the time, and because someone offered to drive me home that day, and because that person was running late

i wrote up a long list of Dos and Don’t to blogging that i knew eonline would never understand and i named that post

How to Blog.

and the skies opened up. that post quickly became a hit. within hours it was viral.

sure not everyone can do all of the tips, not even me, and some of the rules arent apropos for today, but some of the guidelines still ring true

26. dont be afraid to come across as an asswipe. own your asswipeness.

the next year at SXSW the “How to Blog” post won a Bloggie award for best blogpost about blogging

that award inspired me to put together a new blook called How to Blog which is a story all its own.

that book was selling so fast that Cafe Press wanted me to get permission from Shepard Fairey to use the striking image of Andre the Giant.

i was all, hey thats a picture of street art. he’d like it if we all had one of those things on every book there was.

they were all, then fine, get his permission. so i blogged about it, and i got emails from readers saying “heres sheps secret email address.”

and in 1 day i had my permission, and How to Blog was out there for good.

suddenly a book agent was emailing me, and i had two book deals, one for a blog book for adults and one for  “young adults”.

i was all, young adults as you call them are the last people who need a book on blogging. the publisher was like

their parents and grandparents will see the book in the book store and give it to the kid. trust us. anyways what would you name it if you were gonna take this money as an advance and write a book for young adults?

and i said “How to Blog Better than your Stupid Friends”

and they said please let us give you money to write these books.

and i said, no thank you. i blog.

on the coolest blog of all times.

more tales later…

happy birthday busblog

nothing in here is true on jeopardy

its 2:44am. hi. you’re 10 yrs old.

i was trying to make you a super special indepth retrospective of 10 freakin years of rock n roll

ive spent three days avoiding it.

i wanted it to be super wonderful super cool. outrageously indepth because who knows if there will be more of these.

ten years

of riding the big swell this blog caught almost from the word jump.

but what can one say: the busblog gave me everything.

dreams came true. every type of dream came true.

meeting cool people, getting cool stuff, creating interesting things,

climbing and climbing and ending up in places that were it not for this very blog, wouldnt have happened.

girls flew across the country to meet me.

people gave me thousands of dollars.

others gave me control of their most special thing.

all cuz of the busblog.

theres a guy somewhere i never met, who bought just so it could be redirected here.

the list of super cool things that happened to me because of these ten years of typing into a dialogue box would never end.

so my brain the last few days was saying then dont even start.

but a HA – that has been the moral of this story.


write the things that are hard to write.

write the things youd only tell your BFF

write the things that no one has the guts to say.

tell the world all you wanna do is whisper sour nothings in a hot babes ear

but shes all my months booked.

tell the world its 251am and jay z and kayne are delivering the one two punch

busblog, you endless fountain of surprises.

i’ll tell you what i’ll do. for the rest of the week we will celebrate you, reminisce

and seriously sit in amazement  by what this weird thing  produced.

and what this weird thing will continue to produce.

i can honestly say i dont know if this will roll on for another ten years.

layne, welch, kitty, sk, flagrant, anti, the pants, none of them hung in there on their one, long lasting neverending url.

a few like xTx kept rolling, but the odds dont look good for the future. which is good. people should know that life is precious.

that Now is all there is.

and right now im gonna find a proper picture for the first happy birthday post of many, to you,

world famous busblawwwwwg

a former boss emailed me today

to say good job on my “gorgeous goodbye letter”.

isnt that sweet? email is the best.

wanna know what else is the best? email addresses that dont change, that are easy to remember.

tony at tony pierce dot com for example.

a long time ago someone said you should sell email addresses.

i was all, that is quite possibly the worst idea ive ever heard.

who would want

and the person said, it would be kitchy, like how converse should sell email addresses.

so because im in a giving mood, and because i wanna prove my friend crazy

for a limited time i will give away for free email address redirects.

so if you have some crazy address

and you wanna change it to

just email me the requested name and the email address you want it redirected to

and i’ll hook it up.


you must request your request from the email address in question, other than that, knock yourself out.

Welcome to the new busblog

why is it so warm in LA today?

because there is a new version of the busblog.

why is there a magnifying glass way up on the top right of the screen? click it and see what happens. then type a word in there.

whats that bird doing? roll over it.

scroll down to a photo post with arrows around it. click the arrows.

to comment, sign up with Disqus and all will be well.

i never thought this day would come. im very happy you’re here to enjoy it with me.

major shoutouts to my man Gregg Hartling who designed it, tweaked it, built it, and fined tuned it

click here to see if he will design your blog or website for you. maybe he will if you’re lucky.