Riding away from CARS without Apple TV

A note from the publisher

So, this week the Mac press paid tribute to John Moltz, who got the kind of eulogies normally reserved for people who have actually accomplished things, like George Ou and Rob Enderle, without going through the inconvenience and mess of actually dying. Or even sobering up. Or even sobering near. Hell, pick a preposition and put it near “sober,” and Moltz won’t be anywhere in the vicinity.

Moltz had 18 great months of biting Apple-related humor at his aptly-named “Crazy Apple Rumors Site.” Sadly, those 18 months were spread out over six years, ending on Friday when Moltz moved the site to “indefinite hiatus”—the same famed location where you’ll find Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip and Newsradio. And Asteroid.

The Ou-Enderle mention above (and let’s face it, doesn’t everyone who thinks of Rob say, quietly, “Ow! Enderle!”) is the second of two times I or MDJ were borrowed to bestow legitimacy upon CARS without permission. The first was six months earlier, when Moltz had me as an eyewitness reporter when an Apple TV unit “cemented its own legendary status by pulling a 3-year-old Oklahoma girl from a well over the weekend.”

(By the way, that Apple TV never arrived, Moltz. Get your pal Schiller to send over a few dozen.)

I especially liked the reference to MDJ as “a frequently published analytical journal” less than a year after my heart failure diagnosis. Thanks, bud. That’s why I’m so eager to repay the favor by pointing out that in your final entry, you don’t know how to spell Gassée, in a story that makes a plot point out of how to spell “Don Crabb.”

Just like on Monday, when you didn’t know how to spell hot tub. Or you added an “e” on purpose, and none of us are buying your story that you’d have to imagine what a hot tube is. (No compensation is required for this public service on your behalf. Except those Apple TV units. And some low-sodium waffles.)

It could be difficult to imagine how the Mac community will get along without the beloved lies, distortions, inaccuracies, incompetence, misspellings, drunken streaking, goat misplacing, interdimensional train wrecks, voter fraud, and culinary nightmares that have made CARS what it was yesterday, since what it is today is “yesterday’s news.” It could be very difficult. It won’t be, but it could be.

But as time passes, as sites fade away, as Moltz’s blood alcohol level plummets to around 0.36, CARS shall not fade from the Mac consciousness for a single two-word reason: Artie MacStrawman.

The least clued in among the business and technology press (Ow! Enderle!) has, for decades, clinged (clung? clanged? clunked? mojitoed?) to the fallacy that “Mac users” act in ways the writers only imagine, something you can easily detect because they could only back up those assertions with one or fewer factual examples.

CARS didn’t just debunk the problem for the gazillionth time: it gave the fictional Mac user a name, and in doing so, breathed life into the bogeyman. From that point on, instead of wondering who these Mac users were that kept bugging everyone, we knew. It was Artie! The scourge of a generation, the anonymous source for tens of thousands of Mac-bashing articles was dragged into the sunlight, where he was clearly seen as no menace at all.

For this reason, and if for no other, CARS has become Beloved of Seekers of Mac Truth. Its name shall remain spoken throughout the virtual lands. Steve Jobs himself named a Pixar movie after the site. (Oh, yeah? Prove me wrong, smart guys.)

So, Johnny, on the off-chance there is some actual difference between “being drunk and writing CARS” and “being drunk and playing World of Warcraft,” enjoy your time off. Come up with a few months’ worth of new material that you can stretch into the next six-year run. By then, there’ll be a whole new crop of writers you can name-check to get yourself free publicity, a tactic that’s both more effective and much cheaper than “advertising” or “quality.”

Or just sleep it off, since Artie has secured your place in Valhalla. Either way, send the damn Apple TV units. This writer’s strike is killing me.


(I only figured out on Saturday that I was having a rather serious adverse reaction to some new prescription medications, so I was increasingly useless through Saturday night. Both MDJ and MWJ should be out soon. This is why we normally don’t publish specific plans—I’m feeling a lot better, but the days of bad sleep and the remaining soreness are still causing me problems. It’s like I spent Wednesday through Friday soaking in a large tub full of arthritis.)