We Get Letters
It came in a white business envelope. And at first I thought it was a check from one of the advertisers. Although in retrospect the block printing on the envelope with no return address should have been a tip-off that I wasn’t getting paid.
Readers of the magazine, attendees of our events and listeners to the show reach out all the time. Though typically via digital media like email, Instagram or Facebook. Sometimes people will call (Zoomer likes to give out my cell phone number). Occasionally I’m recognized in public. More rarely in recent years, I’ll still get the odd letter.
It's strange to me, to think of myself as a “public figure”. I suppose that in the age of social media most of us are public figures of a sort. But as a publisher and show host it comes with the territory. And while I’m not a “people person” by nature, I do value the exchanges - the questions, the praise and the criticism. It helps make the magazine and shows that much better.
It's hard to take away anything positive about the letter I received (except, I suppose, that it’s fodder for this issue’s Publisher’s Note). The three key takeaway points were 1) you can’t trust what you hear on the radio because everyone has their own show; 2) I should change the name of the talk show from “THE TONIC” to “THE FAT BASTARD SHOW” and 3) the magazine is a “motherload of supplements for this and that” and that I should “take them all and shove it”.
So, lots to unpack. 1) I don’t trust most of anything I hear - so on this point we generally agree. 2) I think Mike Myers might own the copyright on Fat Bastard, so unfortunately I can’t make the suggested change. Also, the letter writer might have been looking at older pictures of me. 3) I’m actually thinking of taking zinc and magnesium to help with post-workout aches and pains. But I don’t think they come in suppository form.
Curiously, the writer went to some lengths to hide their identity. As mentioned above, there was no return address and with the exception of the signature, the letter was printed. All probably unnecessary as I’m not taking it to a forensic expert. The signature was allegedly from “Eden Grinshpan”. For those who don’t know, Eden Grinshpan is a celebrity chef/host on the Canadian Food Network. We’ve never met and she seems lovely on tv. I don’t recall writing anything about her. So I’m reasonably certain it wasn’t her. But it was a nice touch. This won’t be the start of a bitter media feud.
I guess I’m flattered in a way. Short of cutting out letters from magazines, ransom note style, my critic put some real thought and effort into their missive. I guess you could say I’ve inspired a motivated and resourceful hater; which, when I started out, is all I ever dreamed of accomplishing. I suggest that you listen to the talk show (thetonic.ca) and read this issue of the magazine to determine if it also enrages you. That moron, Joel Thuna, discusses the natural treatment of hot flashes. Carlye Jansen, a true degenerate, covers sexual communication and there’s fake news about the great food at the Green Living Show...and I suppose it bears repeating - if you’d like to tell me how horrible this note or anything else you’ve read in this issue is, please feel free to reach out.