Now It Can Vote

It’s weird, the things that stick in memory.

In my mind, February 2002 was cold and snowy. Who knows if that’s true – but that’s how it’s stuck in my mind.

I was working at a company in Minnetonka whose death spiral, which incompetent management had started long before the post 9/11 “Dot Bomb” reared its head.

9/11 had happened five months earlier. And my own personal collapsing tower, a divorce, had happened not long before that. I was living with my two kids – at the time, 8 and 10 years old – and getting used to a whole new way of living.

And as both worlds – the wider one and my personal one – spun out of control, I found myself missing the voice I’d lost fifteen years earlier, when I’d gotten whacked from my first, and to that point last, talk radio gig at KSTP. I didn’t need, or ask for, much – but having some way of getting what I was thinking out to someone other than my kids, dog and cats was something I was craving.

And which seemed so, so far away.

I”d come back from lunch, to an office across the lake from Ridgedale Mall, and was already bored out of my mind.

I went to – and it occurs to me, it may have been among the last times I ever did that – and read an article about “The New Generation of Conservative Intellectuals Online”. One of the featured thinkers was none other than Andrew Ferguson – and his “blog”, the Dish.

And, most importantly, a sidebar on how to create a “blog”.

I ran home that night, fed the kids, put them to bed, and went out to “” and started setting thngs up…

…and got to my first roadblock; picking a name.

Not sure where “Shot in the Dark” came from: I think it was mostly a play on words, encompassing the DIY/no idea what I”m doing vibe that I felt, as well as my nascent Secone Amendment activism

Either way, that next morning I got up at 5:30AM – the only “me” time I really had at that point – and started writiing.

And nearly every weekday morning for the past 18 years, it’s been the same routine. My kids are grown up and moved out, and one of them has a kid of his own. My little writing hobby that drew maybe half a dozen readers a day morphed into what I have today – four-figure daily readership – and so much more, a social circle and a radio show and a bunch of friends I can’t imagine my life without, and a whole world the doors to which I thought had slammed shut in the eighties.

Anyway – today Shot in the Dark turns 18. It can vote and join the military.

And I’d like to thank you all for being here, and being the reason I do it, all these years; some of you, literally since just about Day 1.

Thanks. And here’s to 18 more.

17 thoughts on “Now It Can Vote

  1. congrats man, I spent my first few years commenting on anti-strib and made a lot of friends (and one significant enemy) as a result. I was still finding myself as a hot headed teen but I knew what I stood for no matter how unpopular it made me with my peers. I want to sincerely thank you and all the other guys out there Mitch for being a father figure to me (especially after I unexpectedly lost my Dad now, 8 years as of this Friday JFC)for taking a emotional and sometimes hot headed teen and showed him how this political thing works, or doesn’t.

  2. Congratulations. Time flies. I have had SITD bookmarked in my browser for most of those 18 years. I actually bumped into you at a gun rights discussion in Bloomington one time and was happy to say hello to you in person.

  3. My heartiest congrats to you, Mitch.

    I stumbled across SiTD a few years ago and it has been part of my daily “must read” list ever since.

    May your success continue!

  4. Ah yes, the heady days of conservative blogs. Nihilist in Golf Pants. Red Star. Captain’s Quarters. And who could forget the Kool-aid Report? Gone now.

    Congratulations, Mitch.

  5. Curious…
    Mitch Berg claims it’s been 18 years. Hmmmm. But that would make him the last bleg standing.

    Rede my bleg.

  6. Wishing you the happiest of anniversaries and hopes for many more to come. Thanks for what you do Mitch.

  7. Got into blogs during 2003, including this one, just in time for the Kerry-Bush presidential election. Twas Hugh Hewitt who introduced me to this world. Good job Mitch, keep up the good work.

  8. Like kinlaw, I found this blog and others due to Hugh Hewitt. And found others who see the Minnesota landscape the same way I do, generally.

  9. Anyway – today Shot in the Dark turns 18. It can vote and join the military.

    Too bad it can’t drink. Seems like it could use one at times.

    Congrats, Mitch, on being a survivor and thanks for entertaining us for this long. Now it we just clean up our rooms ….

  10. Me as well, but like all fads after some time passes most fade away in obscurity. And JD you listed some great blogs but how could you forget Learned Foot? His stuff was beyond epic at time. KAR was great but other than SITD, Learned Foot owned the MOB for the years it existed.

  11. How awesome ….. 18 years! Congrats and big thanks to you Mitch for all the info and entertainment and thanks also for all the great commenters here who chime in so well. I still visit and read here and @ Powerline daily after learning of them from Hugh Hewitt so long ago ……. Happy Anniversary and rooting for many more to come!

  12. I’m not sure how I first found out about SiTD, but it may have been from Hewitt. I started reading late in ’04 as I tried to decide whether or not to launch my own blog (which I did in Feb of ’05). This really gave me a feel for topics and the give and take involved, and I’ve continued to enjoy the experience even as my own blog gets a new post about every four months. Congratulations!

  13. It’s worth noting that the blog can drink in Wisconsin if it’s with its parent, no?

    Hearty Congratulations!

  14. Congrats, Mitch! 2002 was the year of the blog. A lot of them started up then, including a blog that started out as the story of how our house was built, then turned into one long vent against our general contractor “Our House” then transmogrified into a political opinion blog. Long gone now and no where near as popular as SITD even in it’s heyday.

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