Late last night, far later than I had any business doing on account of the insanely early start I had this morning, I was thinking about Justin and Griffin McElroy, and their final week at Polygon. Their final day. I was thinking on what they’ve accomplished, not just at Polygon but outside of it – with Travis, with their father, everything. I reflected on all of the joy they have brought into the world, and everything they’ve yet to do. I’m excited for it.
Then I remembered, not for the first time, an act of kindness that Justin performed for me about seven years ago. And, being utterly incapable of having a thought without immediately sharing it on social media, I tweeted about it. I won’t repost the tweets here, they’re easy to find, but the tl;dr is that at a time when I was a much younger, angrier man than I am now, at a time in my life when I was regularly shitting on Justin and Griffin for doing their jobs, Justin helped me – unexpectedly and unprompted – during a time when I needed help.
Those tweets gained some traction overnight – hundreds of likes, dozens of retweets, and a quote tweet from Justin that has been itself liked and retweeted hundreds upon hundreds of times.
A big part of that story, however, of that exchange, is who I was in 2011 at the time it takes place. And so what follows is a very long post about growth, anger, and shame. Continue reading