About once month, I get an e-mail from someone who is convinced that I'm the biggest asshole in the world because they sent me an e-mail, usually with a request for me to sign and send them a personally autographed photo, and I either didn't respond, or didn't respond to their satisfaction. In the "you're an asshole" e-mail, the sender usually points out how they can totally see through me, and I'm totally fakin' it on my blog, because I am, at my core, a huge asshole sitting atop a pile of money in my mansion, built by slaves, that's just below the treeline, and all you suckers who think I'm a decent person are paying for it.
I try really, really hard to be a patient and honest, direct person. I'm really not a jerk. (Well, at least I work very hard to not be a jerk, but if you push me too far, look out.) I do not live some extravagant lifestyle like you see on reality TV, and I don't have people working for me to run some sort of celebrity media empire. I'm just a guy with a wife, kids and two dogs, with 24 hours in the day, just like you. In fact, this whole idea of "having fans," that implies some sort of ownership or something actually makes me really uncomfortable. I love it that I can perform and entertain an audience, but when the curtain comes down and the lights come up, we all go back to our own homes and our own families. I don't really need to explain that, right? I mean, most people get that, don't they?
Let me just make this clear one more time, so I can refer to it when the next "you're a big asshole, Wheaton! Fuck you!" e-mail comes in: I don't have the time to respond to every e-mail I get, but I do read everything that's sent. That's right in my FAQ:
So are you going to reply to me or what?
Sadly, the answer to this question is most likely not. I really do read everything which is sent to me, but I just don't have the time anymore to personally reply to everyone who emails. I used to be able to keep up with it, but the time just isn't there, anymore, between my commitments to work and my family.
I am truly flattered that people care about that sort of thing, and I'm more than happy to sign things for people at conventions, in book stores, or if you happen to bump into me on the street, but I also don't have the time -- or piles of pictures, stamps, and envelopes laying around -- to fulfill autograph requests that come in via e-mail. For some reason, that isn't in my FAQ, but I'm pretty sure I've addressed it in my blog at some point in the last few years. However, it will be in the new FAQ when WWdN 2: Electric Boogaloo goes live.
I fully realize and understand that this just won't be good enough for some people. Reading Bimbos of the Death Sun, and having an "Oh my god I've seen That Guy at a con" moment on every other page reminds me that it's just not possible to make everyone happy, but like I wrote in my last post, not everyone will get this. The right people will get this. For everyone else, yep. I'm the asshole. In fact, I'm the biggest one in four counties.
Afterthought: Uh, just to be clear: I'm not fishing for compliments or testimonials about what a great guy I am; I'm just so fucking sick of these "you're an asshole" e-mails, I had to get it off my chest.