At some point in the summer of 2005, I hastily changed the name of this stupid blog from the frankly ridiculous House of Vassifer (which, essentially, meant nothing) to the equally stupid Flaming Pablum. In the ensuing twelve years, I have been repeatedly posed the following query:
“Dude, fuck does that even mean?”
It’s a fair question. As I attempted to explain here, I just sorta came up with it as pretentious shorthand for needlessly provocative -- albeit poorly composed -- writing. The fact that the name seemed pompously verbose, knowingly contentious and self-deprecating all at the same time made me fleetingly chuckle. For better or worse, the name stuck, and this blog has been saddled with it ever since.
While not quite as consequential as, say, choosing a permanent tattoo or naming a child, the fact that I made the decision so blithely without a great deal of thought has continually caused me embarassment. When my wife or friends of mine infrequently cite my blog in conversations, I sheepishly downplay the whole thing. Having to explain its stupid name (despite the fact that said moniker appears nowhere in its URL … which is also kinda problematic) always makes me privately groan.
In any case, a friend of mine recently shot me a screengrab from Twitter (not a social platform I really spend any time on, although I do have an account). Evidently, the phrase “flaming pablum” was used in a tweet by an indidivual named J. Doyle in a context that has nothing to do with my silly blog.
Now, this could mean that I’ve effectively penetrated the zeitgeist and my blog’s title is now part of the common vernacular … or it’s simply a coincidence.
I’m sticking with the former.