Dear Mr. Dean

Dear Mr. Dean:

I was informed by a co-worker that you had stopped by the bar. You brought up to her your past involvement with the old Quarter Rat magazine while boasting about being a writer. She had also written for us and was excited to tell you about the recent incarnation of it. Your alleged response was: “If Styles is involved, it must suck.”

Let me put your concerns to rest. It has never been better. The publisher is an actual reporter, with actual newspaper experience. A reporter, not a “journalist.” Unbiased reporting of facts with verification and credible sources, written free from opinion or spin. NOPD and City Hall press people are taking our calls from The Quarter Rat newspaper to answer questions. How cool is that?

Tabloid sized 11 inches by 14 inches, 16 pages (4 in color) and in newsprint. I have been dreaming of this for 10 years. These are getting scooped up faster than the old ones did. Never any left over. The publisher and I bust our asses to try and keep this as a topical monthly publication. It is seriously not easy. A real effort since we both have a day jobs. Did I mention he’s still a working reporter and also a full-time graduate student?

Jay Slusher is our featured writer. When the publisher approached me to start this back up and asked who we can get to write for us, Jay was on top of my list. It wouldn’t have been The Quarter Rat without him. I just add print layout, ad design and an occasional editorial opinion. OP/ED pieces are clearly that. We are uniquely different from the other numerous monthly publications in town.

I hadn’t thought of you in years, but I’m flattered that you remembered me. It made my morning with hearty laughter. At first I thought I would post a snarky retort here. It’s challenging. I could go for the easy personal attack on you, but I can’t think of anything unique or specific about you that I could poke fun of. You are just generic, void of originality, creativity or independent thought. A non-playable character.

I’ve made all of the hipster observations that I need to in my past writings. The pretension, consumerism, narcissism, the self righteousness copy and paste ideology. Endless snobbery about music, food, nasty beer and celebrity worship. Are you one of those? And you’re a writer? Every hipster claims to be a writer, artist or musician. If you didn’t make any of those title claims, that would be unique.

Please don’t ever try to lay claim to the title of journalist, I’ll clarify why I say that. On March 15, 2018 you posted on social media a breaking story with your spin on it. The headline read: MIAMI BRIDGE COLLAPSE KILLS SEVERAL. Your comment: “We have money to build walls but not for our infrastructure. SMH.” That was your third “Orange Mad Bad” post that night. I had to click on it. You know, get more information, an understanding and some knowledge of the story before I made a comment.

The very first sentence in the breaking news story was something like: a pedestrian bridge under construction collapsed in Miami killing several…” You couldn’t even be be bothered to actually click on and read the article before you offered up your hyperbolic opinion on it. Obviously, you just spent your time scrolling the news and thinking, “How can I bash the right?” Click and share, get those likes from your tribe.

Another loud fart in the echo chamber.

There were a few instances like that, but that is the only one I still remember. You probably wouldn’t like the new QR newspaper. We actually go out and interview people, verify information, quote officials, go directly to those involved and ask for comment. Write it up clearly without a narrative. Very different approach to covering the news than you are probably familiar with. Kind of old school news reporting.

And yes, we still have lots of boob photos.
Best of luck with your future,

Clean Up Guy,
Art Director
The Quarter Rat Newspaper

The Quarter Report!

Local writer faces national backlash after harassing Asian man in bar

On April 8, local freelance writer Thor Benson proudly tweeted: “I just ran into Andy Ngo at a bar in New Orleans. I politely told him he’s a ‘garbage person.’ Lol” Andy Ngo is a journalist from the Pacific Northwest who has gained notoriety from his extensive on-the-ground reporting of antifa protests and riots over the past few years. Mr. Ngo is often a target of verbal and physical abuse from far leftist ideologues.

Mr. Benson was mistaken as to the identity of the individual in a New Orleans bar that he approached and insulted. Mr. Ngo responded to the Benson tweet by stating that he was not even in the country at the time in question. Mr. Benson evidently mistook a random Asian bar customer for the journalist.

In an effort to be fair to Mr. Benson, I’ll attempt to give him some wiggle room. In his defense, I doubt it ever happened. It was probably one of those fantasy “it never happened but I’ll say it did” tweets. The person who will post a fictional self-righteous tale about their virtue for likes and shares from their tribe.

“I was on the bus when a woman got on wearing a TRUMP shirt. I called her out for being an evil racist and bad person. I shamed her so bad she got off of the bus before her stop. All of the people of color stood up and applauded me for being so brave and righteous!”

Or the other spin on fantasy tweets “My 2 year old came up to me and his very first words he ever spoke were ‘Mommy, I’m trans!”

I’ll take “Things that never happened” for $500.

You’re Thor? I’m tho thor can hardly even walk!

I tend to think this is how this started. Thor was sitting in some pretentious hipster bar in the Marigny scrolling through his phone getting pissed Mr. Ngo has more fame and clout than he ever will. As he sipped his pickled herring flavored IPA, he fantasized about what he would say to Andy if he walked in this bar right now.

The professionally trained writer from The Daily Beast carefully and eloquently composed a brilliant and scathing comment for his more established media peer, “You’re a garbage person.” Mark Twain and Oscar Wilde would be envious of making such a burn.

Mr Benson, unaware that he had possibly just insulted a random Asian neighbor, later doubled down with a second tweet. He boasted that the Asian man he called a “Garbage person” had just left punctuated by a “LOL”

If a tobacco chewing redneck went up to the only black patron in a bar placed his hand on his shoulder and told him that he was garbage forcing him to leave the establishment in fear, we would have a name for such an awful person. Especially after the redneck goes back to his buddies bragging about how he bullied out “their kind.”

I won’t claim to be a journalist, but I thought I should investigate a story here in New Orleans before I make a comment on it. Let me connect with my local Asian acquaintances to get feedback. Plus it was an excuse to order take out.

I asked the delivery guy if he had ever heard of Andy Ngo. “SHIT! I had an asshole approach me on a delivery yelling that name at me.” I asked what did he look like as the bag of beef and broccoli was handed to me. “I dunno, just another hipster asshole with a beard. He said he was a writer or something.” I tipped him well for the interview.

Coincidence I am sure.

Coming back from Jackson Square I ran into one of my neighbors that I often say hello to. The asian guy who chain smokes as he scrolls through his phone in front of the Foot Massage Place.

He laughed hard when I asked. “A couple of weeks ago some fucker called me a racist and told me to go back to Portland. He kept calling me Andy. He wouldn’t leave me alone so I made a fake martial art stance with an “EIYEEE!” He backed off and said I couldn’t hit him since he was a journalist or some shit. He ran off down Chartres street like a little bitch.”

“Can you describe him?”
“Pasty ass hipster with a beard. Kind of creepy looking. Tough to say since you know how all hipsters look alike.”

Another coincidence certainly.

Today at my favorite sandwich shop I was almost to inquire the same to the guy at the grill. He turned around to greet me and take my order when I saw his t-shirt with large writing that said “NGO! I AM NOT ANDY”

I pointed to the shirt and asked, “Let me guess, pasty white hipster with a beard?” “Well, yea, he said he was a writer for something. What can I get you?”

Mr. Benson, allow me to lump you into a group. I place you with the white progressives who call Candice Owens a ‘Coon.’ Those who call black conservatives ‘Uncle Toms.’ I have known many hard core conservatives and not one has ever boasted about harassing a random Asian person over Pearl Harbor.

You may be too little to remember this: Back in the 1980s there was a Television minister grifting off of the evangelical crowd. Jimmy Swaggart use to preach about the sin and perversity of pornography. The evils of lust and fornication. He was busted with a skanky hooker in a Baton Rouge motel.

You are the hypocritical minister, and that tweet was your skanky hooker.

Someone is Thor.

You are just so Punk

So did you go down and get the COVID jab? Did the needle go through your “BORN TO DIE” tattoo? I bet you were wearing your favorite “SUICIDAL TENDENCIES” sleeveless T-shirt too. You look so anti-establishment with that anarchy symbol on your state-mandated face mask.

Nothing to do Nowhere to go
I wanna be vax’nated
I can’t go to the airport

And I can’t get on a plane
Worry worry worry
now here I go insane
I like to point my fingers
Fauci controls my brain

Oh no oh ho oh oh

Please don’t try to come across as a tough rock and roller who is a rebelliousness and fearless individual while simultaneously lecturing others on the importance of being vaccinated and wearing a mask. “Because our government and mainstream media says we have to. I don’t want to die!”

You’re not being very Punk, you’re being very very Karen.

I hung out with a few punks back in the early 1990’s. I was drawn to the “anti-establishment” narrative of the culture, but soon saw through the facade. A group of rebels is an oxymoron. “We’re rebels, you can tell because we all dress like this and listen to this music.” Rejecting establishment norms of status and conformity by creating their own society of status and conformity. Explain to me again how you are different to the YUPPIES?

While I’m at it, let me go off on the smelly hippies too. For nearly six goddamned decades, I have been getting lectured by all of you concerning healthy living. Healthy eating and meditation boosts your immune system. Then the vegans go off on how they are healthier than mere mortals because they don’t consume animals. Meat and dairy are bad for the immune system, so you should be OK then.

You’re all about organic foods and holistic medicine, so I bet you wouldn’t take the jab in a million years. Big pharmaceuticals are the bad guys, correct? Price fixing, price gouging, dangerous side effects, addiction to products, high profits, lab animal research, CEOs earning tens of millions and pulling strings in Washington D.C. Just such evil men controlling the industry.

But wait, did someone say FREE vaccine?

Let’s scroll down your social media posts, “capitalism bad,”tax the rich,” “Fuck Trump,” a kitten meme, oh look here! “I just got my first shot from Pfizer, I feel safer already!” Virtue signaling, propaganda and an endorsement of a billion dollar corporation all in the same post. Facebook is so proud of you. By the way hippy, I’m wearing a mask and staying six feet away from you not because of COVID, but because you smell.

I’m not saying that all of you are a bunch of pussies, but the vaccine really should come in a douche version too. Just saying.