Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Who Is Tony Aroma?

A while back I wrote a piece about where my pseudonym came from (Tony Who?), but I think it’s time I tell you a little bit more about the person behind the pen name. Like why do I even use a fake name in the first place? Why not just be myself? Who is the real Tony?

Well, there are two main reasons for the made-up name. First, I would be a bit embarrassed if my family or friends knew what kind of stuff I am writing. Aside from a few close friends, no one even knows I have any interest at all in the devil’s weed. If they found out what I was writing, most would probably decide (if they hadn’t already) that I was stupid, silly, crazy, pathetic, obsessed, drug-crazed, or all of the above and then some. Granted, I may be any or all of those things, but that doesn’t mean I have to flaunt it. So no one, not a single living soul, knows that I write this blog.

Second, although I have never admitted to committing any crimes in my writings, nor have I encouraged others to do so, I do nevertheless criticize my government. That alone may not be a crime at this particular point in time, but it sure has gotten a lot of people in a lot of trouble. And with all the fear of terrorists and other threats to our national security these days, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if our government were keeping an eye on anyone who is critical of their policies. It certainly wouldn’t be the first time. Not that anyone can really be totally anonymous on the internet. But I do what I can to remain unknown and hope it works.

So, what can I say about myself without compromising my anonymity? I think it’s safe to say that most people that know me would be surprised, shocked even, to know what I’ve been writing about. I can say that I am not a youngster, nor would I be referred to as elderly or spry. I guess that makes me middle-aged. I’m pretty well educated and have what would probably be considered a white-collar or professional job. I don’t consider myself a conservative, but then again I don’t like a lot of liberal polices. If I had to pick a political label, I’d have to say I’m a libertarian. I believe in the Constitution and the limited federal government it describes.

I was pretty rebellious when I was young(er). Some might even have labeled me a “hippy.” But I’m not old enough to have been a real hippy, so I don’t think that label really applies. But now I’m just your typical member of “the establishment.” Although I like to think I’m not all that typical. And for the record, I am not (overly) lazy or a slacker, I don’t lack ambition, I am reasonably successful, I am a generally well-adjusted and happy person, and I rarely ever say things like “man” or “dude” in a conversation. And I hope you’ve determined from reading my work that I am reasonably intelligent and have a pretty good grasp of the English language. So much for the stereotypes.

But I think the best way to describe me is the last person in the world you would expect to write such a blog. Picture in your mind the type of person that you might imagine writes about this sort of thing, and then picture the exact opposite. That’s me. Picture the “person next door” in suburbia U.S.A. Really, like I said in my blurb, I’m pretty much your average Joe. I could be somebody you know. I could be that neighbor that you see every once in a while and say hi to or maybe exchange some small talk with. I could be that person in the next cubicle that you talk to on breaks and have the occasional lunch with. I could be that old friend that you grew up with and wonder what ever happened to. Makes you think, doesn’t it? Then again, this could all be a product of my overactive imagination and not be an even remotely accurate description of me. I hope this answers all those burning questions that you’ve been too afraid to ask.

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