Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Happy First Birthday, Lefty's Last Cry!

As founder of Lefty's Last Cry, I would like to wish the blog a happy 1st birthday. On June 10, 2008, I was sitting in the basement of the my house in Washington, D.C., my mind exhausted from the long day at work, and I thought to myself- "maybe I should start a blog to talk about my experiences in DC."

So there it was, my little baby, with no expert graphics help (thanks Dylan), no editors at my side (thanks Bill and Brendan), and none of my trusty comrades (thank you all). I've watched Lefty's grow from a measly personal blog that got 10 hits a day to a busy, energetic arena that averaged
400 visitors a day.

Today, on Lefty's 1st birthday, I'd like to say thank you to all of you who have made this site yours. Your hard work has made a difference, through all the big stories we have covered and the hundreds of comments we've received. You are "Lefty" as much as I.

So in honor of Lefty's 1st birthday, I'd like to recognize the highlights and pitfalls of the past year. Here they are:

#3 PITFALL: DNC bosses command Lefty's to become comatose for summer. (June 2008)

Within a few weeks of its birth, Lefty's was sent into hiding by the big bad Democratic National Committee (DNC) bosses, who told me that interns aren't allowed to have political blogs while working at the DNC. This broke my spirits, and almost killed the blog altogether.

#3 HIGHLIGHT: Bill joins the blog (October 2008).

This was the first bit of good news in months. Lefty's had been dead for months, and it never seemed that I would resurrect her. Until one day, I visited my neighbor and best friend Bill. I asked him if he wanted to run a blog with me to cover all the election hoopla, and he happily agreed. Lefty's began her first big run.

#2 PITFALL: Lefty's failure to attract writers (Winter 08-09)

With the buzz of the Obama victory wearing off, Lefty's had little left to run on. I went around campus asking my fellow liberal friends to join the blog or check it out, to little avail. Lefty's truly experienced a winter of the soul. Perhaps this was necessary because come springtime, she would be running full steam.

: Lefty's attracts outsiders, attention on campus. (April 2009)

One fine April day, I was walking across the quad, and a female ND student, who I had never met, came up and said- "I love Lefty's Last Cry! You guys are awesome. Keep it up." I was completely taken aback. Wow! Someone knew about Lefty's and I didn't tell them directly. How cool! It wasn't long before random right-wingers and comment warriors began their invasion, drawing even more traffic and conversation on the blog.

: The Lefty's Writer's Strike (November 2008)

Now I know what your first reaction is- "Wait a second, Lefty's doesn't have any paid writers. How can there be a writer's strike?" Well that's where you're wrong... Even though it none of our 5 writers were paid, they all (including myself) decided to not show up to work anymore, for a long ass time. So even though "the man" never felt the sting, poor Lefty's did. The blog sadly went into its second major hibernation, lasting roughly 3 months (again).

: Cenk Uygur speaks to Lefties and College Dems (April 2009)

Finally, the highlight of all highlights. Cenk Uygur, from The Young Turks, a program that we (Lefty's) had been covering for a while, came to visit Notre Dame and speak to our College Democrats. Lefty's writers gathered from the far corners of our dear state to celebrate the goodness. Many of our writers met for the first time. Not long after the Cenk visit, Lefty's had its biggest week ever, attracting 1800 visitors. For all who were there, this was truly a high point for the blog.

In conclusion, I would like to encourage all of our writers and readers to remind us of their favorite moments, via post or comment. Lefty's is glad to have you here to celebrate the big numero uno.


ShamRockNRoll said...

Yay!!! Happy Birthday, Lefty's!!!

As a newly promoted editor, I would just like to say that I'm honored to be part of this little project that grew from Henry's summer ambitions, and has turned into an active forum for political discussion that I think will outlast our time at Notre Dame, and become a hearty progressive institution on campus, and within the Indiana progressive community.

My favorite "Lefty's moment" isn't necessarily a blog memory, but the Indiana College Democrats Convention we hosted this year, where we met all sorts of awesome people from other schools in the state--many of whom have become fellow writers for Lefty's.

To those new liberal friends we met that weekend I just want to say thank you, and I'm stoked to have the pleasure of working with you. I'm sure we will all cross paths again, professionally and socially, for years to come.


Gaby said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY LEFTYS!! i love leftys i check it everyday :)

Andrea Watts said...

happy birthday! :) best collegiate political content in the blogosphere