Frequently Asked Questions about The Meat Raffle

Why The Meat Raffle?

Because a good name is half the battle, right? Would you read this blog if I called it “half-baked stories from a Midwestern transplant in the New England.” Actually that’s not bad.
Meat Raffles are fun and surprising, a pastime that brings people together in a simple, familiar way. But they’re also a little weird, right? (You WIN! Here’s some brisket!) Also, in Minnesota it’s not uncommon for groups to throw together a meat raffle to raise a little money or awareness for something.
I’m not a VFW (and I don’t need your money…yet), but I thought it was time to raise a little awareness of my writing since I call myself a writer. And some of the best advice I ever got from an editor is to write every day, no matter what the subject.

Also, it’s a scientific fact that meat raffles are more fun with a few beers in you. So crack a few before you read here. Trust me, it’ll go down smoother.

OK, so how do Meat Raffles work?

You buy a ticket, the wheel is spun and if your number is called you’re going home with a very lucky slab of raw meat. That simple.

Right, so what’s this blog about?

Are you familiar with the term Polymath? No? Oh you poor thing, have a cookie. A Polymath is someone who is knowledgable on a great many things in this universe! String theory! Nano Technology! Animal Husbandry! Impressionist art! Excessive use of exclamation points!

Yeah I’m not that guy. I know about the finer points of cake baking, the history of Yacht Rock music, the weaknesses of Green Lantern’s power ring and the correct proportions for a tasty manhattan.
But I’m also a trained (I swear) journalist curious about many things related to pop culture, news, technology and cuisine. Also sports. Did I mention I like sports?

Which is to say this blog is about all of the above. Keep reading.

I feel you’re not taking me seriously.

Maybe if you weren’t wearing that stupid hat.

So someone paid you to write? Seriously?

Indeed. I’ve been a journalist for almost a decade, working first at the Columbia Missourian (in Columbia, MO. Clever name, right?), then the Kennebec Journal, Waterville Morning Sentinel and Portland Press Herald. I’ve been a town government reporter, technology writer, podcast host, political reporter, and, on rare occasion, TV personality. In particular I wrote a blog and weekly culture column that people were not typically displeased with (unless I was making fun of the tourism industry). That all ended March of this year when I decided to leave the Press Herald.

Why’d you leave your job?

It was time to take my talents to South Beach. Of course by “talents” I mean “palatable writing skills,” and by “South Beach” I mean “any company willing to put up with me, offer a bacon allowance and is not constantly the topic of ‘will they survive’ speculation.” The truth is I took a buyout from my newspaper (a lot of that going around). I’m a journalist, I love journalism and I’d like to continue in it. But since I’ve got this time I’m open to exploring other options. Plus, it’s not often in life you get paid to leave a job (unless you’re the CEO of a multinational corporation of course.).

Could you explain what it means to “Bake Hard?”

I am a man. I have many aprons and a kitchen full of tools. I bake hard, son. Cakes, cookies, breads and bars. Can’t stop, won’t stop. What more is there to explain?

Why not write a journalism blog?

I gave that plenty of thought. There are plenty of great blogs about journalism, from how to change for the future, to finding new business models for news and keeping tabs on new technology that can help the media. In the end I wanted to write about more than journalism. But you better expect regular musings on the media around here.

I’m sleepy.

We’ve got some warm ginger ale and a cot in the back.

Astronauts or cavemen?

That is a damn tough question and a debate that will rage on forever. Astronauts are smarter, have superior technology and are known to be “astronaut tough.” On the other hand cavemen have amazing strength, ingenuity and a killer survival instinct, which has to make up for their fear of shiny things and fire. I guess it comes down to whether the astronauts have weapons.


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