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RIP Maitland – Nothing is Funny Anymore

RIP Maitland – Nothing is Funny Anymore

Way back in 2003 I met a guy named Doug. He was one of a million funny people on a wrestling website. He was actually one of three guys who ran it. It looked like this, and the most recent post that day was his.

Looks good for 2003, right? They had a ton of people writing, a really busy forum and constant conversation. I have no idea what it was built in. There was no WordPress back then. And I am pretty sure they never made a dime. But goddamn it was fun.

15 years later. Him graduating college later. A million posts later. Him graduating law school later. A billion AIM / Google / Whatsapp chats later. A trillion ideas about jokes, sites, books, podcasts and ridiculous-text-based-online-gangster-game strategies later. An infinite number of times Doug and I would fall in and out of touch but never all the way out later – he died. I don’t know a lot more than that. I know the last time I talked to him was this:

It was not the first novel he wrote. He never stopped writing and he was funny. I am sure someone will help me figure out how to show you his posts here. But for now you can go to the site he started just because he had ideas of funny posts about Trump.

And because he was Doug, it was big. And intricate. Funny idea about what if Trump shot Jim Comey? Well it would be funner if it was in the form of a Don Lemon CNN panel featuring this group:

That’s Lemon, Ted Nugent, Dennis Rodman, Rick Santorum, Chris Cilizza, Michael Cohen, Rudy Giuliani and Roseanne Barr discussing trump shooting Jim Comey. Including this gem:

Rick Santorum: If I can jump in here for a second. Mr. Trump has done a lot of great for the country. This one moment is not something that should define him. We have to also remember, this is a man, James Comey who once leaked a memo he wrote to a friend and that man leaked that memo to the media. So, I think, once you start putting everything in perspective, was Mr. Trump justified? I think so.

What Would Happen If Donald Trump DID Shoot James Comey?

From what I know, Doug died after playing basketball last Saturday. I hadn’t gotten the script pages yet but even though he said “tomorrow” it meant “at some point fairly soon”. But now I know they aren’t coming but I don’t BELIEVE they aren’t coming because Doug was only 36 fucking years old. That is not when you die from some fucking heart problem after playing basketball.

We never actually met. I always assumed I would go to his wedding if he had one.

He was the funniest writer I had even if he only showed up with the same frequency as a comet. He was the only one on staff that I think Vange actually wanted to beat up. He pushed her buttons like nobody else.

But since I had known him longer than anyone else on the Internet, as Doug, as Silky Johnson, as Buff Bagwell in a giant top hat, as Maitland, he was always grandfathered into whatever scheme I had in play. And I in his.

He even got me to play that goddamned gangster game again last year, like I had time for that.

But I made the time. It was Doug.

I’m pretty sure he became a lawyer because arguing and negotiating were his two favorite past times. And he usually got what he wanted.

But the days of earning comments and discussion in the forums are long gone. And when you are trying to entertain people, especially when you are trying to make them laugh, silence is horrifying.

He and I discussed the relative benefits of running blogs (fuck, that word is gross) in a post Facebook world. We sort of came to the conclusion that there were very few. Is it funny if you don’t hear anyone laugh?

And thinking about it over the past 24 hours (a friend from the gangster game tracked me down last night to tell me, he’s a wonderful guy) us staying in touch now makes all the sense in the world.

Right before he told me he was sending those pages, he had popped up to tell me nice newsletter. He had gotten it in his email. You may have, too.

We stayed in touch because we were fans of each other’s stuff. Yeah we were friends. But he also knew I would tell him if an idea was funny or not and same with him for me. Sometimes we would have long conversations and dissect things but final sign-off was expressed with: ‘Nice’.

I mentioned how he loved to negotiate. Well the past few months I’ve been working on podcast script that is kicking my ass. And I needed him because he was a defense attorney. I told him he needed to read parts of a book.

He said no way was he doing that and I said yes you are. He said why would I do that?

I said: because I have gone along with everything you have cooked up almost without even questioning it for more than 10 years.

He said: That’s true. OK Tell me exactly what pages you want me to read. Is this going to be the whole show? I told him no, it was three parts but I only needed him for this part. I explained the rest and we discussed it a lot and it ended with him saying: Nice.

And now I get why I’ve been crying about losing a guy I could not identify in a fucking photograph.

If we had big ideas we always ran them past each other. I genuinely never realized that until just now.

We gave a shit about our projects. And I’m not going to say that either of us liked pouring our hearts into things and trying to come up with an algorithm of page views to silent laughs.

We both knew that even if nobody else gave a shit, at least we did. So nothing we wrote was ever for nothing. Until now, anyway.

Doug is dead and I won’t know what’s funny anymore and the only positive things I can pull out of this shit situation where a young man dies for no reason is realizing the function we served for each other all this time and that the last thing he talked to me about was something he was working on. And the last thing I ever said to him was: Nice.

About The Author

Acadia Einstein

I'm the funny one. And the handsome one. And I pay for everything.

10 Comments

  1. Jenn Martinelli

    🙁 he sounds pretty awesome and I’m sad I didn’t know him better. Life is a trash pile!

    Reply
  2. Christy Stevens

    Ugh, fam, I’m so sorry. It’s definitely an interesting world when we can make friends with someone who lives hundreds of miles away and who we couldn’t identify in a police lineup, and feel real genuine grief when we lose them for good. ::HUG::

    Reply
  3. Jose Carrillo

    It’s fantastic to find someone like that, to collaborate with. Very rare. I can count on one hand people that I’ve clicked with. To lose someone like that is the highest tragedy.

    I’m sorry you lost sometime like that, but try to remember how much better you are having known him.

    Reply
  4. James Olchak

    It sucks.

    Reply
  5. Adam

    Doug was an absolute rarity.

    I met him whilst playing an online gangster game, probably the same as mentioned in the words above. It’s way outdated, poorly ran and generally shite – but we liked it. I struggled to read the above without welling up to be honest. I share your grief in the loss of our mutual friend. Whilst I hadn’t know Doug anywhere near the time you had, he was still a part of my life and we spoke daily. We talked about anything and everything. We didn’t always agree, but respected each others view.

    I lost a close friend towards the end of last year and it hurt hard. It still does. The grief of loss feels exactly the same, even though Doug was multiple timezones, a continent and an ocean away. I too had never met him.

    Twice since I’ve attempted to @ him via a WhatsApp chat for his input. It’s amazing how often he was relied on for comedic, intellectual or well thought input. When his name appeared on the screen, or perhaps whilst partially typing it, it hit home. There’ll be no responce. Those daft things I snapped a pic of to send to him, he won’t see. The world cup games we were watching at the same time – unwatched on his set.

    Doug was a beautifully natured individual. He really saw the best in everyone; his career choice reflects that. He never seemed to do anything for personal gain, always had time for people and not once lost his temper – He just laughed. I dubbed him “The Proffessional Arguer.”

    Doug kept his personal life to himself. But news of his death has effected many people personally. I’ll honestly fucking miss that dude.

    Doug Graham – Wherever you are, be happy, be at peace and be you.

    Reply
    • Acadia

      You are an amazing guy and I am really glad you posted. He left a mark in a lot of places and his passing has left a hole in a lot of us. But I will say that based on my experience, him never losing his temper with you is more a testament to YOU than to his patience. Heh.

      Reply
  6. Peach

    RIP internet friend

    You were appreciated

    Reply
    • Acadia

      You are wonderful, Peach. Thank you.

      Reply
  7. Andrew

    I’m sorry for your loss, mate. Thankfully, you’ll always have his thousands of laughs to share with us.

    Reply
  8. Deadpoolio1224

    Well said Acadia, sorry for your (and apparently many people’s) loss. Doug sounds like a friend everyone wants to have in their life.

    Reply

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