Exposing Yourself

People still offer the opportunity to work for free


On this week’s show, Todd and I talk about his adventures in Ocean City, particularly at The Cork Bar, which is one of the few places that knows what Ocean City really is and acts accordingly. 

My own ambivalence about the resort is always this notion that is it anything more than a tacky tourist trap. It’s carny to its core but pretends that it’s a more accessible Martha’s Vineyard or whatever. 

My opinion hasn’t improved over the last few days, but we’ll leave the recent ugliness for next week’s show (which I swear I’ll put out Thursday, guys. Honest!).

The other thing we talked about is how much contempt many of the small business owners in the region have for people who make stuff. Todd spoke about literally being asked to work for exposure. He’s been at this like, 20 years. 

The myth that exposure works should be dead and gone by now, but somehow it isn’t. The reason is that people wrongly believe that word of mouth is effective if you’re not getting paid. Instead, it turns out to be one mooch telling another where they can get free work done. 

I’ve honestly stopped promoting things that I like just because I got a name for “working for free” when my hobby just happened to be blogging about things I liked. The only thing it did was ruin my ability to enjoy my hobby. 

I may have mentioned I had a book come out recently about a cult murder. At least three people suggested I should do a story about their business. They didn’t mean to be assholes, but the worst assholes rarely do. For me, though, I’ve just become a little contemptuous of people who don’t know not to ask for free work.