Monday, December 20, 2010

Cleaning Out the YouTube Bin

As the views of my videos posted to YouTube approach 3,000,000 it has become harder and harder to keep up with the deluge of email I receive daily. Granted, there are some single videos that have many millions of views; my videos, many instructional in nature, don't simply occasion comments but also elicit numerous emailed questions and comments from viewers.

Arising early this morning, I set about going through nearly a thousand emails that have come in over the last two months. In the craziness of school and my other obligations, I have had to sacrifice the attention these people deserve. I feel somewhat guilty over it but it can't be helped: there is only one of me and I need to put my (live) students first!

So as I went through the emails that had been addressed to me personally, I plucked out a few of the gems to share with my readers:


  • Dear soon-to-be Father Ryan, 
                Can you do exorcisms? My son is possessed and I need someone 
                to get the demon out of him.
  • Are you really studying to be a priest or is this just a marketing strategy?
  • Do the Jesuits really control OPEC?
  • What is it like to be part of the Illuminati?  [Note: why would you ask a person in an ostensibly secret society what it is like to be a member of said society? If I did belong to such an organization, don't you think I'd deny it?]
There were others, but none that was particularly amusing. Sometimes I go through and find a host of hysterical nuggets but, today it seemed, I hit a dull spot. About two dozen of the nearly one-thousand notes involved invitations to play in various places and another fifty were meaningful questions related to people's vocations and spiritual life. Several hundred were requests and then the rest were rants and harangues. 

It does occur to me that I should seek out some endorsement deals from manufacturers of tin whistles. Many people wrote asking about what kind of whistle to buy and, to be honest, I'm useless on this: I have played the same whistles for over fifteen years. I don't keep up-to-date on instruments so I'm a terrible person to solicit for advice. The company that makes Generation should pay me a commission as I do mention them by name as being a good beginner model. Perhaps, if I decide to remake the series, I should go find corporate sponsorship...I'd be the Michael Jordan of the whistle industry. 


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