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his column was not supposed to happen. This column sprang from a moment so horrifying, so disintegrating, that telling other humans about it seemed the equivalent of setting myself on fire. It was a moment that scalded itself on my subconscious, and it seemed destined -- obliged -- to stay there.


But then, before I knew it, I was sharing the moment with the world. Looking back, my recollections of how This All Started are vague: I got real drunk one night around a friend of mine who happened to publish a Web site. And I told him the story of how the woman to whom I was supposed to be married left me hours before I was to
  appear on a cable game show. And he told me I should write about it. And, come to think of it, yeah, Will, bad shit seems to follow you around, you should write about that all the time. And we could do something with that Will, don't you think?  


And now here I am, four-and-a-half years later, still writing the damned thing.

The column has veered from inspired to uneven to scared to cocky to disinterested to the-very-air-I-breathed, and back again, over and over. Obviously, the author has changed in four-and-a-half years, and the columns have changed accordingly; if the words "bling-bling" ever show up in a column again, you have to promise to shoot me in the face. But the basic premise has always been the same: Every thought you're having, someone else has thought it before, they've been through it, you're not alone. You helped me, I helped you, hey, we're all on the same team here.



Ideally, every column is a self-contained entity, able to be read and enjoyed (or irritated by; any reaction is fine, really) whether or not you've read any of the other ones. I would not be so presumptuous to believe that everyone would be willing to sign up for this ride -- often, I'm not exactly ecstatic to be signed up myself. Each column should, ideally, be able to stand alone.

But, if you can handle it, I might suggest diving into the whole thing, reading them all, inhaling the whole Loser experience. Why not? You're not that busy at work today anyway. Hopefully, you'll laugh at some, you'll groan at others and, if I've done anything right whatsoever, you'll see a little bit of yourself from time to time. And, in lieu of anything else, perhaps you'll be able to make more sense of the whole mess than I've been able to.

So, you know, dig in. I spent four-and-a-half years in the kitchen making this for you. It might be a little moldy in spots, a little sugary in others, but, I can assure you, it was definitely home cooked, with plenty of special seasoning, directly from the heart.

--Will Leitch, July 7, 2003.