Hey there. I’m Daniel. Some people call me Dan, others Danny. Some people have called me much nastier things, and likely still do. I’m a 40-something, middle class, Jewish father of two young teenage boys living in the inner suburbs of mid-town Toronto.
For the past 15 years or so, I’ve been working as an editor at the country’s largest Jewish weekly newspaper. Before that, I worked for a while as an editor at the country’s largest daily, until I left for a slightly gentler pace in order to take more responsibility at home for the kids while my wife earned some (semi-) real money as a public servant.
Before that, I spent way too long in school.
This blog was something I’d been contemplating for a long time, as I covered and read the news on a daily basis, and as the child-rearing black hole that were my thirties put me in contact with more and more pinheads in my work, parenting and personal lives.
But save for the occasional opinion piece, I never really bothered to follow up on the urge to write, or rant, until now.
(This site’s name, wRanter, is a play on my last name, Wolgelerenter. I had considered calling it WolgeleRANTER, but even I have trouble spelling that.)
So, with no particular expectations, I’m offering up some thoughts and putting them out there, in the hope that someone might care. Not that I would mind too much if no one does. This is mainly for me – to get ideas about a range of things off my chest, things that interest or titillate me, or things that just plain piss me off.
You might be asking, “Who is this guy and why should we care?” Or perhaps, “Why now and not 10 years ago, when blogs were actually sort of sexy?” Both are good questions.
I answer semi-humbly that I probably should have been given one of those generalist newspaper columns of yesteryear, but I took some odd career turns before coming to that conclusion, and now there aren’t enough of those columns to go around (if there ever were). Also, newspapers as we know them seem to be in the process of disappearing entirely.
Or maybe I should have been a talk-radio shock jock, but those jobs only go to right-wing loons, even in Canada, don’t they?
Nevertheless, opinions still fulminate and need a place to go, and thanks to the magic of the interweb, they can have their own place, out there.
Sometimes I’ll probably write and rant about stuff that’s been kicking around in my brain for a while (maybe even years). Sometimes I’ll be writing about stuff that’s fresh but perhaps a bit parochial. As a result, this thing might seem a bit unfocused at times, lurching as it inevitably will from politics to parenting to sports to Israel to whatever other topic may have happened to keep me up the night before. But so what?
One thing I’ll try hard not to do, though, is to be too much of a one-trick pony, or to insult or criticize one of the communities I feel an affinity for in order to score cheap rhetorical points.
It could start strongly – or at least with a head of steam – and then peter out entirely. We’ll see.
But before it does, if it does, here’s what you can expect: simple, direct writing, and (hopefully) unvarnished, gut-felt opinions (some of them undoubtedly half-assed, naive and perhaps even wrong, although I doubt it – you tell me), as well as, if I’m lucky, maybe even some wit, and, ideally, the occasional insight.
If you don’t agree with me, let me know with an e-mail, tweet, comment, or whatever. Not that I’ll truly care too much, because I’m past 40 and I know where my next meal is coming from.
So, although I intend to try to prove that people in my ideological tribe can be outspoken in a common-sensical kind of way, I have no grand plan. I just hope I don’t get sued or embarrass my wife and kids (or myself).
I fear that a little shame and opprobrium is unavoidable, though, and I’d probably be somewhat disappointed if some of that didn’t happen, because writers gotta write, and ranters gotta rant, you know?