The subscription thing

November 27, 2015 § 42 Comments

So, there’s this weird thing every month where PayPal notifies me of each $2.99 subscription. When I browse through I see people I know and people I don’t. The whole thing is so impersonal, people sending me money and me just going on about my business without acknowledging it.

Here’s why I feel guilty every time I see one of those notices and just go on about my day: Every single subscription is a personal affirmation that what I’m doing matters somewhere, to someone. You may not think $2.99 is a lot, but it is to me because it represents your voice that you’d rather pay than read for free. I struggle with this—how do I let people know how grateful I am?

So I take a stab at it from time to time, randomly emailing people what I hope aren’t form “Thanks you’s” even though they pretty much are, trying to let them know that I appreciate their support. It’s support of the financial, emotional, and spiritual kind, and even the Catholic-Jewish guilt kind because when I get bogged down in “What am I going to write today?” I get sustenance from the guilt of knowing that people expect me to produce something since they’re paying me to do it.

Yesterday I sent out a form thank-you to a buddy whose identity I’ve sworn not to reveal but who used to ride with a white baby harp seal under his seat. “Hey, Baby Seal,” I wrote, “thanks again for your support. I really appreciate it.” Then I hit “send” and went on about my business of carefully picking around the scabby edges of my road rash.

A couple of hours later I got an answer. It’s not the best email I’ve ever gotten–it’s the best email ever written in the history of the Internet. And I’m sharing it with you now.

You kidding me? You have any idea how much nonsense I’ve learned thanks to that blog?!?

I mean, despite every rational judgment telling me otherwise I’ve gone through periods of eating nothing but kimchi, only breathing through my nose, being made fun of at the gym, weighing my food to the gram, loving power meters, hating power meters, spending thousands on carbon, selling hundreds in carbon, re-buying thousands in carbon (this time ensuring it was the correct 100% carbon-carbon kind of carbon), riding only at the front, riding only off the front, realizing there is no off season, refusing to take any recovery days, learning to hide in a group, pulling through without ever pulling through, learning the importance of recovery days, caffeine only diets, 3 meals a day – no snacks! And of course, finding glory in the time I dropped Stathis…while he was on a beach cruiser in a pooofy jacket and jeans.

I’ve also learned to be a better partner, a better friend, a better father than I was planing on being and the best grandfather with a strained ball sack.

And the very best part has been watching you find your sobriety.

One day I’ll sue you for all those 2.99’s but for now, thank you.




For $2.99 per month you can subscribe to this blog. Or keep reading for free. Either way, THANK YOU! Click here and select the “subscribe” link in the upper right-hand corner. Thank you!

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§ 42 Responses to The subscription thing

  • Joe says:

    Guilt is an over rated emotion – recognize it and let it go. I’m 100% confident that every subscriber does so because we feel there is value in what you write, what you do, and who you are, and I am 100% confident that we all get a payoff from making our donation. You’re prose is well worth $2.99. Now 3 bucks? That’s a different story.

    • fsethd says:

      Thanks, Joe! If only I weren’t a Catholic Jewish Southern Baptist Methodist Atheist Ottawa Indian Buddhist Shintoist, maybe I could dispense with the guilt totally.

  • A says:

    I would be happy to pay for this blog, unfortunately I hate pay pal. Do you have a PO box I can send a check or cash?

  • Winemaker says:

    $2.99 is not for the writing, it is not for the ideas, or the twisted humor, or the eerily odd association I get from the blog…it is to support someone who goes past what all of us cyclists do, and spends the energy to produce something of value. Is it ‘worth’ $2,99? Way more.

  • Manslaughter says:


  • Michelle landes says:

    That is Rad!! One day I will figure out PayPal ! I enjoy your blog every morning Wanky Thanx😘

  • DougJ says:

    That was a very stupid and pointless blog entry. I want a refund!

    Although Baby Seal’s reply was pretty good. Does he have PayPal?

  • Tamar T. says:

    The PayPal payment thing is a one time deal — once you set up PayPal. But I put Seth’s office address above, so you can send checks or cash or bullion.

  • Tobylima says:

    And here all along I was feeling guilty for only paying $2.99.

  • dangerstu says:

    Perfect timing, my payment automatically shipped out today, and everytime it does I think of all the added benefits of having platinum access to your blog, getting the posts every day, like not having to wait that extra 35 milliseconds that you typically have to with the free account etc. Funny enough I’ve still not received my signed copy of the WM bobble head though.

  • samgwall says:

    ¡Oh all right dogdammit!

  • fucking Seal. fucking Seth. I’m feeling so thankful that i get to ride and sometimes hang out with you freaks. My brain is so stimulated…THANK YOU.

    oh, and ‘this’ again…i love this:

    “I’ve also learned to be a better partner, a better friend, a better father than I was planing on being and the best grandfather with a strained ball sack.

    And the very best part has been watching you find your sobriety.”

  • ErikR says:

    hahaha! The Kimchi and nose-breathing. i hate you wanky! I drink your bullshit cool-aid at least once a year.

  • Debra Banks says:

    Awesome! Congrats Seth. You always earn my 2.99. I love reading your posts: Every. Single. Day. No guilt, just good stuff. Thank you for sharing yourself with us.

  • tb says:


  • A-Trav says:

    I’ve said it before: Your insight for $2.99/mo. is the best money I have ever spent.

  • Tom Paterson says:

    From this side of the fence, guilt erasure for $2.99/month is cheap.
    You’re welcome, Wanky, but the pleasure is ours.

    So, when is your next nutsack checkup? Does the cute woman doc have a private practice?

  • Alan says:

    Yeah, there’s that what do I do now thing but you are not that person, you can’t help yourself, and in doing so you help everyone. Through your musings we are empowered to be someone we are not now. You acquiesce yet lead simultaneously…and offer a refund. I think…

  • fsethd says:

    Here’s a nice comment emailed by a subscriber:

    Hey, Seth-

    It’s the least I can do. I’ve been reading you since before there was dirt, it seems, and always enjoyed your writing. In the past few months, inspired not least by the cash prizes you donated to a few of your local races, I’ve adopted a new motto:

    “What’s better than indignant ranting on social media? Cash on the barrelhead.”

    So I’ve been giving a lot lately, when I see particularly sad thinking in action. Giving to Syrian refugee charities. Giving to Planned Parenthood. Giving to deserving underdogs instead of complaining about how unjust their treatment has been.

    It seems like giving to support one of the people who inspired me to do that was the right thing to do.

    Keep it up, brother. You do good things.


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