How Bleacher Report Saved Me from Myself

Illya Harrell@illya_1971Analyst IIAugust 15, 2009

RASTEDE, GERMANY - MAY 22:  General frontside view of the house of a drug addicted suspect on May 22, 2008 in Rastede near Oldenburg, Germany. German Police arrested a man suspected of dropping a wooden block off a highway bridge which killed a woman traveling in her family's car on March 23 near Oldenburg, Germany. (Photo by Getty Images)

I am an ex-junkie.  It is not a part of my past that makes me proud.  Nevertheless, and for better or worse, it has shaped my mind into what my fellow bleacher creatures read every time they click on one of my articles.

It was bad.  Rather, I was bad. 

My addiction cost me friends and family members, but I didn't care so long as I found that next fix.

Politics, theology, the media—anything that had a hint of conspiracy.  I was hooked and prided myself on being more informed than anyone else.  

I constantly repeated that old cliché, "There is a fine line between genius and insanity." 

After taking an official I.Q. test, imagine my dismay upon discovering my score of a mere 64—this after posting numbers as high as 177 on various Internet versions.

So I compensated by reading as many articles on radical politics, the pitiful corporate media and the trash they shove down the throat of Americans.  Who cares if Paris Hilton has a new puppy?

Sorry.  I still fight demons.

On June 2, 2009, my life would be forever changed.

After staying up all night researching the certain doom that will take place in 2012...Which will undoubtedly turn our society into one seen in the film Mad Max.  Even though I am no longer hooked, I do plan on befriending Mel Gibson before the winter solstice of that year.

Again, I apologize.  One day at a time.

Rewinding back to June 2, Cincinnati Reds' first baseman Joey Votto had been placed on the disabled list.  The Reds were keeping a tight lid, not telling fans exactly why Votto was on the DL.

Being a huge baseball fan, and big time conspiracy theorist—I was convinced I knew the reason behind this silent treatment.

And I needed to inform the world.

So I wrote a piece, "Stressing Votto's Vertigo."  I searched for a soapbox to place my article.

Last year I wrote for a baseball site that was much more academic than Bleacher Report.  It was cult-like.  If one did not know every sabermetric stat their articles were given little attention.  I was an outsider.

So I quit writing for those guys and began whoring myself to the point where I was writing fake testimonials for male enhancement medication. 

I had hit rock bottom.

I was in desperate need of a new platform.

By the grace of Shoeless Joe Jackson, I somehow found Bleacher Report.  I can't even remember how I stumbled across the site.  But I did, and it has saved my life.

No longer would I take beatings for spouting stuff like, "Barack Obama—they are all the same."  Of course I meant politicians, but when talking to a couple of black guys in an elevator I quickly found that my comments could easily be misconstrued.

So after reading some brilliant articles, I quickly signed up and published my Votto story.  It received immediate reads and comments.  I was dumbfounded.  This site was perfect.

Now, instead of reading world news and trying to be the one who changes the world with my opinions, I concentrate my writing skills solely on this site. 

How many people actually change society with words?  I'm no Mohandas Gandhi or Martin Luther King Jr.

Those guys had charisma and intelligence...and were snappy dressers.  I possess none of those qualities.

I no longer pay any attention to world events.  I don't even check the weather forecast.  According to my profile, I have been clean for two months.

My life is here.

I have found a home.  And I humbly thank Bleacher Report for saving me.